Newbie Oldest with PTSD/ODD

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by M2TG, Mar 24, 2011.

  1. M2TG

    M2TG New Member

    I adopted my two nieces 3 years ago. Their Mom died and Dad abused them, they were 7 & 9 when they came to live us with.

    The 9 year old is now 13. She has always have problems with authority is very manipulative. She recently had to go to a psychiatric hospital for 7 days for saying she was better off dead than following our rules. They started her on Risperidal and gave her a diagnosis of PTSD & ODD/Conduct Disorder. She has been in counseling for a couple years now, but it really doesn't seem to help.

    Does anyone else have kids that are manipulative? What can be done about this? The counselor wants me to talk to another child's parents because my niece reported she was calling her names. She said by talking to the other parents my niece will see that I am on her side and she can talk to us more. The girl did call her names just said that everyone is the car was acting crazy (heard this from driver).

    Sometimes I just want to cry, because I can never win and everything I do even if that is what she wants is wrong.
  2. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Hi M2TG, and welcome!

    First off, I'm in the throes of 13-dom with- my beloved daughter, who was recently diagnosed with- depression. I think that part of the reason you can't do anything right, even when you do what she wants, is *because* she's 13. Honestly - I survived a major difficult child, but this 13-year-old girl may very well do me in. So, basically, I think part of it is just that horrible typical teen (typical teen) syndrome.

    Manipulation. Yep. My difficult child was a master of it. Some of it was just stone cold messing with- adults' heads. Some of it was due to his very skewed perception of the world and really lousy interpretation of interpersonal behaviors. It makes it really difficult to sort out what really is going on. For example, in your car situation, my son definitely would have interpreted it as someone called *him* crazy. He was the center of the entire universe, everything was about only him, and he took "literal" to new heights. I understand what the therapist is saying and trying to promote, but I think I would just explain, in front of your difficult child, that you did address the issue with- the adult driver and that perhaps difficult child misunderstood. It's probably not going to go over well with- difficult child, but ... you *did* hear her concerns and you *did* address them with an adult who you think is responsible enough to drive her (reliable source), so that's that.

    My son once came home from school, telling me that the substitute gym teacher hit him. He was utterly consistent in his story, even the next morning as I was driving him to school. I tell you what, I was ready to really raise a ruckus. As we're walking into the school, I gave him one last chance - telling him that I was going to walk in there and accuse this man of hurting him, and he'd better be darn straight on his facts. "Uh, no, Mom, it didn't really happen." ARRRGGGHHH!! I don't know if the payoff for him was watching me spin, or the thought of me ripping this guy's lungs out (figuratively speaking). I don't even remember his excuse - I *do* remember praising him a whole lot for telling the truth (saved me one day of embarrassment anyway, LOL).

    I think the key is to make sure all adults involved with- your niece are on the same page and communicating well. We were very lucky to probably have more than our fair share of professionals who clued into his manipulation very quickly. There were a few who were totally taken in by it - I found that direct, unemotional discussion of the issue with- the parties involved, with difficult child present, usually got to the bottom of it.

    Take deep breaths, and hang in there. The girls are lucky to have you in their lives. How's the younger girl doing?
  3. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    That is very typical with the typical teen, as well as the older PRE-teens. I "don't know anything" and I can't win either. As for the manipulation, that is part of the PTSD. They will constantly "test" the adults around them. Do you think some of it might be subconscious (or conscious for that matter) thinking that "you're not my mother"? Just a thought.

    Keep searching and talking. Welcome to our "family".
  4. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    Hi M2TG,
    My 16 year old difficult child also has PTSD. She was repeatedly molested as a young child by an extended family member and then gang raped when 13. She was a good kid until she hit puberty and all hell broke lose. She has been a huge challenge. 18 months of residential treatment (where we found out about her sexual abuse), and now a therapeutic foster home and DBT day treatment because we could not keep her from running away from school and sexually acting out. We have her weekends.
    Manipulation is her middle name, but my understanding is that they have a difficult time even knowing what they are doing. It is usually around protecting themselves and controlling everything. EMDR therapy has a pretty high success rate for treating this. We had just started this-but it is on hold until the DBT therapy is established.
    I have felt the same way as you. Please understand that you are doing your best and that wrong and right parenting is so fuzzy with our challenging kids. She needs you to keep loving her and setting firm limits (which she will challenge and try to make you feel bad for). Take care of yourself and know that there a wonderful people here that support each other. Hugs!
    We have had almost no luck with cognitive therapy and the residential treatment made everything even worse. Hind-sight.