New Newbie Introduction

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by 4timmy, Dec 29, 2008.

  1. 4timmy

    4timmy New Member


    I'm new to the board. Looking for emotional support. My difficult child's name is Timmy. My name is Jen. Timmy was diagnosis'd with ADHD/ODD when he was 7 yo. We obtained an IEP for him just last year so I'm still new to the process. He's in a public school. The school's processes (or lack of) are very confusing and aggrevating for me and my husband. We live in Ohio.

    My son is funny, imaginative, witty, and HIGHLY energetic. We've been working on the right "cocktail" of medications for 3 years now and still haven't quite found the right combination that helps him. It's been extremely difficult with each transition. Timmy has been suspended from school twice this year so far for threats made to other students and adults. He has fits of "rage" and hurts himself (head banging, etc.). He's been "kicked out" of 2 daycares in the past. We've been working with a counselor and psychiatrist for over a year now.... the school situation is getting progressively worse. He obsesses over other children not liking him, and the teachers have a hard time getting him to participate in school-related activities. We have met with the school only once this year to set up a "behavior plan" that I don't feel is always appropriate for his needs. The IEP was written in March of '07 and has not been reviewed or addressed since.

    I could go on forever and ever and ever here..... I'll save some for other forums. Just wanted to jump on here and say hello and let you all know I'd like to get to know you all..... and become a really good Warrior Mom 4 Timmy!!!.

  2. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Welcome 4timmy -- I like your signature! Very funny :)

    Your IEP can be modified at any time and you can request a meeting to make changes at any time -- there are others here who can tell you more about this. We've only had one for my difficult child 2 since the start of this school year.

    Sounds like his medications are not supporting him well enough. My difficult child 2 had/has the same social issues and being convinced nobody likes him, but then his behaviors also made him the target of bullying and there really were some kids who didn't like him. Mine also made a threat at school and happened to have a pocket knife with him.

    Getting the medications right is so important. We have a very proactive psychiatrist who keeps an open mind, but it's taken several years to finally get the medications right. Very much trial and error, because you just don't know what's going to work, even if you have years of experience guiding you.

    The other support difficult child 2 gets is from his IEP and he receives social skills training at school twice a week for an hour total. The combination has helped him quite a bit. He still doesn't have any close friends, but at least he doesn't come home crying every day and he doesn't get into fights anymore at school.
  3. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    To me, it sounds like more than ADHD. Who evaluated him? medications only help if you're medicating the right disorder and if there are other interventions in place. I have a few questions that can help us help you. It doesn't sound like the school or your current psychiatrist are really helping him. I'd seek out a private neuropsychologist evaluation. They in my opinion are BY FAR the best evaluations, and I think your son needs one. Ok, the questions:

    1/Are there any psychiatric disorders or substance abuse on either side of the family tree? This is important.

    2/How was his early development in these areas?
    eye contact
    relating to his same-age peers (can he have a give and take conversation or does he tend to just butt in or monologue and walk away when he's not interested?)
    Does he have any obsessive interests?
    What sets off a rage? Is it being told no or is it not wanting to transition activities?
    Did he play appropriately with toys or did he line them up or take them apart or throw them? How about now?
    How does he do academically?

    You may want to do a signature like I did below. I'd also delete your real name and use fake ones. Ya never know who reads this ;) Welcome!
  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi 4Timmy, welcome.
    Here's some hot tea and some fuzzy slippers. :)

    So sorry about Timmy's issues. School issues like you described are so typical. They seem to be the norm more often than not.

    LOL about your rain/rainbow/tornado signature!

    I agree with-MWM, you sound like you don't have the right diagnosis. I've read about headbanging at older ages but can't remember what it was (sorry). Something about relieving stress, maybe?

    Nice to meet you!
  5. 4timmy

    4timmy New Member

    Thanks for the info.! I answer questions shortly. This really gives me some things to think about right off!! My psychiatrist doesn't really get specific when we meet... difficult child is always there and I really don't like discussing some things with the psychiatrist when he is present. Any of you experience this as well? I always try to put everything in writing so she can read my monthly updates.

    Anyhoo..... we have counseling tonight and then I'm going to respond to Midwest Mom's questions. psychiatrist has mentioned possible Asberger's due to some of his obsessive interests.... but it's been a very slooooooow process. Oh, and yes, extremely HIGH anxiety at school and in social settings it seems. School is very stressful for him and instead of asking for what he needs, he tends to act out in other ways....

  6. bran155

    bran155 Guest

    Hello and welcome.

    I am so sorry for you and Timmy. You have found a wonderful place to find comfort and answers. This place has been a lifesaver for me. You will love it.

    I second what gcvmom says, you can have the IEP revisited at any time upon your formal request. Do not let the SD bully you. Your son has the right to an educational plan that is suited to his needs. Become a thorn in their side if need be.

    I just wanted to chime in and welcome you. Hang in there and God bless. :)
  7. Nancy423

    Nancy423 do I have to be the mom?

    sounds like my difficult child. She's had an IEP since age of 3 and I ditto the SLOOOOOOOOOW processes these districts ahve. If he's being suspended for behavioral issues, have them evaluate him (Functional Behavioral Analysis) especially since he's hurting himself which could manifest into hurting others. You'll want a plan in place for any possibility.

    As for IEP, you should have a yearly meeting to update it. If it's been almost 2 years, I'd certainly bring it up because what goals may be in there could be met and new ones may be needed! See if meetings with- the school SW could help with- behavior mod. They can teach him self calming techniques (worked very well for my difficult child).

    If you are confused regarding the IEP process, please consider hiring or brining an advocate. You might be able to find free or reduced cost help. Advocates know the system and can help find school resources that may benefit your difficult child.

    As for this psychiatrist....get a second opinion! if things aren't getting any better, then see if fresh eyes might have a new perspective.
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I've been at this a long time and in my opinion before you really get help with the IEP, you need to find out what is really wrong with your son. I don't like how the psychiatrist seems indecisive and secretive and, if my son's psychiatrist had acted like that, I would have fired her. Our kids don't HAVE all the time in the world. The younger they get help, the better they do in life. This is just my opinion, but I'd speed things up and go to a neuropsychologist. The psychiatrist hasn't had him tested, has she?
    I had a lot more luck with neuropsychologist evaluations then Psychiatrists. They kept getting my son wrong, partly because they go by what you say and they don't actually test the kids. I feel the testing is necessary. Our neuropsychologist tested my son for ten hours in two hour increments. It covered everything from every Neurological deficit to possible Psychiatric problems and he finally nailed my son by the tests. He took his time and was VERY explicit with us and mailed us a ten page report that was so useful for school. My son got a lot better after we understood him better. It made me wonder why our darn psychiatrist had never told us to go to a neuropsychologist. If your son has Aspergers he needs school interventions ASAP. He can't just be medicated and made better just by giving him medications. He needs special handling in school, at home, and in learning how to deal with real life. I would not be happy with a psychiatrist who just read my updates and didn't share much and didn't do any testing and STILL didn't really tell me what was wrong. But if she doesn't test, the chances are good for a misdiagnosis. JMO and experience!
    I wish you luck :)
  9. 4timmy

    4timmy New Member

    Thanks for the tips -- I'll get the lingo down and change my sig.

    Tonight difficult child lied to me and told me all went well today at day care (they are all out of school right now for winter break). After giving him his medications tonight, I saw where he had been banging his head again - husband told me difficult child told him he got angry at this kid today because the kid asked him "what size bra he wears" !!! ???? I'm so worried that he's going to get a concussion.

    I will definitely be looking into a neuropsychologist, although, I have no idea where to start looking. Where I live, you are lucky to find even a Psychiatrist. Also, health insurance probably won't cover tests. I feel sick tonight... so much anxiety and worry.
  10. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Hi and Welcome!! It sounds like you have your hands full. I used to live in the Cincinnati area and had the WORST problems with schools.

    There are a lot of questions thrown at you already, so I just want to lead you to a few links that may help.

    First, if you go to the Special Education 101 part of this Board and post about the school, behavior plan and IEP they will be able to give you PLENTY of help and AMMO to deal with the school. there are LAWS that have to be followed iwth IEPs, but you have to get them written correctly first. anyway, here is a link to the Sp Ed 101 Forum:

    OK. So far you have a LOT of info and personal knowledge about your son. BUT it is HARD to communicate with all the docs adn teachers and others. There is a thread on the FAQ board called Parent Input or Parent Report (I forget which). It is a way to organize ALL the info on your child (including your hopes and dreams for him!). You will need to work on it in chunks, not all at once. And keep updating it as you get new info.

    Once you have it done, then you can share some or all of it with professionals. BE CAREFUL with what you share with school. The district we were in used info AGAINST students, and that is just wrong. So you always want to be aware that you may want to keep some info private.

    Anyway, here is the link to the Parent Report:

    I am glad you are here!

  11. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Welcome. Your son sounds a lot like my difficult child 3. He also was slow to talk, although he could vocalise well. He just didn't have functional language for much longer than usual. He would instead repeat songs on the radio, or scripts of TV shows/movies over and over, verbatim, but "blurred" because he didn't have any understanding of what he was repeating. Once he understood a word, he spoke it clearly.

    Eye contact - there seems to be a misunderstanding that people on the spectrum can't make eye contact with anybody. They can, it's just more difficult with people they don't know so well. Sometimes. My kids have generally made good eye contact with family, always. difficult child 3 makes good eye contact with strangers, too, although if he's feeling overwhelmed he will shut himself off from the bustle and activity if he can.

    To check out the possible Asperger's traits, go to and look for their online Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) questionnaire. Do the test, print it out and take the results to the psychiatrist, regardless of what results you get. If nothing else, it could give the bloke a bit of backbone.

    I think it's very unfair for your son to get into trouble for getting upset when another kid makes a nasty personal remark. It's only natural for him to be upset, and if his social skills are not as good, he will not be equipped to cope with that sort of thing. He needs support in place and that will require an IEP.

    Some things to try:

    1) Keep a diary on your son, to help you keep track of how he is going. It's really useful - we so often are convinced we will be able to hold all the info in our memories, but we can't be certain.

    2) Read "The Explosive Child" by Ross Greene. It helps you deal with the difficulty transitioning, the problems when you have to say, "no." and the other things that trigger a rage. I found the book made our lives so much easier. Get sneak peek at what the book is about by checking out the discussion on Early Childhood forum.

    Stick around. Keep us posted on how you get on. There is a great deal of helpful, useful information and support here.

    Welcome to the site!

  12. 4timmy

    4timmy New Member

    Thanks Susie and Marg! I do feel a little overwhelmed at the moment, but I'll be OK. I actually already have the book you referred to "The Explosive Child", but like any book I get to read, I start reading and then get distracted.... (I'm pretty sure I'm ADD, but have never been diagnosis'd). I have a hard time finishing books, but if I work real hard to, it's possible.

    The Diary idea is one I have pondered as well.

    Oh, and Marg, interestingly enough, I was never told about the incident at the daycare yesterday. difficult child told husband what happened. Usually there will be an incident report for me to sign in the morning, but this morning, nothing. Maybe he didn't get in trouble, but if he was banging his head, I would still like to know what happened!!

    Anyways, you all have a great Day and thanks again for the info.!!
  13. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Welcome from another Central Ohioan.

    I'm north of Columbus, but I know a neuropsychologist in Dublin if that's not too far a drive for you. If interested, send me a PM. I think we had another member that said Children's in Columbus only does neuropsychologist testing for brain injuries. You may also check out Riverside - I don't know their criteria for who they do neuropsychologist testing on. I had one there myself, but that was because my neurologist ordered it.

    Susiestar has said that Cincinnati Children's is really good if you're willing to drive that far. neuropsychologist evaluation would be limited - 6 to 12 hours of testing - so once it's done you wouldn't have to keep going back.

    You're probably not in Franklin County, right?
  14. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Yeesh. I can't diagnose. I'm not qualified, but this kid sounds like he has Aspergers or Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified, and that really isn't a psychiatrist's best field since they are neurological problems.
    NeuroPsychs are in Children's and University hospitals, and I had to travel a bit to take my son to his, but it was worth it. The psychiatrist kept saying he had bipolar and he doesn' Funny thing is, hub and I adopted him at two and we thought "autism" right away because, although he was bright, he was so strange and had so many obsessions and inflexibilities and he couldn't transition. But psychiatrist kept blathering about ADHD/ODD/bipolar/yada yada and put him on tons of medications that eidn't help! We finally heard about NeuroPsychs and had him tested and he's been doing great for a long time now--he didn't need all the medications, he needed a different type of help. At 15, he has come SOOOOOOOOOOO far. He is still Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), but he actually has friends and can behave appropriately if he wants to. And he doesn't act weird in front of other people anymore or go up to strangers and blurt about his They all have obsessions if they're Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). AND anxiety.
    My son actually did better than Timmy at his age--here's an online test you can test for Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) (Autism, Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified or Aspergers). I have heard that it's really good, if you tell the truth. This child could do so well in life if he just got the proper interventions and it sounds like beyond ADHD. The "drive by" hellos cracked me up. L. used to do that. And he'd talk to anyone, even people he didn't know, about things they didn't care about. He has learned social skills now in class. These kids BADLY need Occupational Therapist (OT), PT and social skills help. If he is on the spectrum, these kids perceive the world differently and medications alone and psychiatric treatment really won't do the trick. They don't respond to "typical" treatments. Ok, here's the test and again good luck! See that neuropsychologist, even if it's far away ;)
  15. 4timmy

    4timmy New Member

    I'm in Franklin County, not far from Dublin. I will attempt to PM.
  16. 4timmy

    4timmy New Member

    I tried to PM you wyntersgrace!! Let me know if you didn't get anything. Dublin is actually within a 1/2 hour from home... so YAY!!

    I found out today that the psychiatrist has decided to take difficult child off of one of his doses of Vyvanse (70mg). My husband had to take difficult child to appointment yesterday as I had to work.....and well, he just "forgot" to tell me that part! Oh, and of course we have no idea what she's thinking!!

    Sooooo, now difficult child is down to just 1 70mg dose of Vyvanse in the morning along with 20mg of Fluoxetine and 10mg of Zyprexa at night. EHHHH! -- so, I've read where stimulants can make you more moody, but then I've also read that when you go off of them, you get extremely irritable and mean..... I don't get it!!! :faint:

    I called to check on difficult child in day care at 10am and he had already had 3 anger outbursts..... when he thinks someone is talking about him, he goes off and apparently, this is 1 thing that happened.

    difficult child scored a 74 on the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) assessment online. Which may suggest mild Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). I forwarded this on to our MA, PCC-S (??? Counselor) He seems to be my only way of getting information to the psychiatrist when we aren't scheduled to see her until Jan. 29.:mad:
  17. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    There's withdrawal if you've been on them for too long. My daughter who did drugs was addicted to stims and had a lot of trouble withdrawing from them. And she used ADHD drugs--crushed and snorted them in a pillcrusher. They have street value for a reason. They can be addictive. So it makes sense that after five years of stimulants, no longer using them will cause withdrawals.
  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Wow, does Timmy ever sound like my son! Almost to the letter!!!

    One thing we did that has helped immensely is to practice transitions, particularly during computer game. difficult child would totally melt down if he had to leave to the computer and eat dinner, for example. So we practiced setting a timer at 30 min. intervals, and shortened it to 15, 5, etc. We also practiced warnings such as 1 min., 30 secs, before his 30 min. was up. He would get a reward if he did well. (It's been a while now; I can't recall what the reward was.)

    In regard to his thinking that someone is talking about him, some aspies can be hypersensitive to others' comments. Not that he is aspie, but boy, he sure sounds like it. I read a humor skit a few yrs ago that was a conversation between two aspies who were dating and it was very funny. They both took everything too personally and pretty soon the conversation just flew out of left field. (I think it was written by an aspie.)

    Best of luck with-weaning off the medications. I feel for you.
  19. 4timmy

    4timmy New Member

    Same here, only timers would get destroyed or thrown across the room.:( However, it has helped if I count to 5 after I tell him to do something. ;) The school has him sit in a chair after recess to calm down before his next class starts to help with the transition there, but I'm not sure how that's working out. The schools Occupational Therapist (OT) has him wear a weighted vest sometimes when he's anxious and he is cooperating. This doesn't always work. I've also provided the school with "fidgets" little toys for him to fidget with while he's doing work because he shreds pencils, erasers, tears paper off of crayons, snaps them in 1/2.... etc. The fidgets end up destroyed too, but I buy them constantly.