Reality beginning to set in.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by comatheart, Aug 2, 2010.

  1. comatheart

    comatheart Guest

    husband and I took difficult child to the Doctor today to discuss changing his medication and to also give him a drug test. (difficult child thought we were going to the Doctor for a Sports Physical that he needs for school.)

    While difficult child was out of the room doing an eye screening we discussed the slight possibility of Disinhibition due to the Celexa with the Doctor. (something I read about on one of the threads here) The Doctor disagrees and said he's never seen it from Celexa and dismissed that as a possibility. He agreed that the medication needs to be changed based on difficult child's actions but instead of changing them himself, he's referred difficult child to a psychiatrist.

    The drug test came back clean, which I was expecting. I really don't think that's playing a role here as difficult child doesn't have money or the opportunity at this time. I do think he has used in the past, but not since school got out. I AM however worried that school is about to start again and difficult child seems to be doing everything he knows not to.

    We did notice while in the Doctors office that difficult child has cut himself on both legs and his upper arm. He carved a cross in each leg and his arm just looks like cuts going 2 different directions. :(

    This is really happening isn't it.

    I mean, that probably sounds stupid, but I guess I still find myself thinking "He's okay, it's a teenage rebellion thing, he's just testing us" etc ARGH!!!!!

    I'm so very sad. That psychiatrist can't call me soon enough.
  2. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Cutting isn't generally teen rebellion or anything having a go at you - it generally is a very personal, often secretive thing. With easy child 2/difficult child 2, she cut herself in order to see blood because then she would understand why she was hurting so much. It was as if the internal emotional pain needed something physically outward to match.

    There are ways to help someone who is cutting. There are also self-help methods (such as drawing on your arm in red pen instead of cutting) but self-help doesn't work if the underlying problems continue.

    I'm sorry you're going through this. But somewhere inside, he is hurting a lot and almost certainly does not understand why. Probably blames you. That's another reason to avoid using blame as currency which we all do - it's so easy to see cause and effect slide into blame and responsibility in all cases when too often bad things can just happen and we need to openly acknowledge this.

    Hang in there.

  3. barneysmom

    barneysmom Member

    Hey Kristen,

    I haven't read your other post and I'm not sure what you mean specifically by dysinhibition, but my gfg17 got manic and irritable on Celexa. It's not uncommon at all for antidepressants to make kids (adults too) "manicky" (manic) which is likely what you mean by dysinhibited. It's not a slight possibility -- it happens a lot, that doctor is just plain wrong, good thing you had already read up about it -- nice catch!

    You got some good advice from Marg about why he might be cutting. My son cut too. He said that he felt numb
    and wanted to feel something, anything other than the numbness. If you can, try not to be shocked at the cutting -- my initial intense reaction added to the intensity my son was craving. Maybe offer to help wash and care for the cuts, ask neutrally and supportively why he is cutting, and that he can come to you to talk about those feelings when he wants to cut, and doesn't have to hide it.

    Watch out for any more antidepressants unless your psychiatrist can give you a real good reason. Hang in there -- you're doing a great job. Keep posting for support and info.
  4. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I am so sorry Kristen.
    I'm glad that the dr referred you to a psychiatrist. VERY good. You will have better luck going that route.
    I agree with-the others, that medications do diff things to diff kids, and for him to just dismiss, out of hand, the idea that Celexa could be causing disinhibition (or mania) is narrow minded.
    I know you are dreading the start of school, and the influence of bad kids.
    I am so sorry that your son is hurting.
    Keep looking under all those rocks! You're doing a great job.
  5. Farmwife

    Farmwife Member

    I was a cutter and my reason may be a bit surprising. It was years before my true difficult child-ness came out. I did have home life issues but was a pretty well behaved and well adjusted young teen. Basically I had the potential to be messed up but hadn't gone down the path yet.

    My reason for cutting was to be cool, that's all. No numbness or interest in blood, no need to ease anxiety. I was a nerd and made fun of a lot. I saw some cool girls cutting in class and thought if I cut too that I may be less of a nerd. That's it. No deep underlying problems at the time. No actual reason that took any thought. If anything it was a dumb lemming impulse and nothing more.

    In fact, the pain from using safety pin as they did was a major deterent so I used a razor because it cut clean and only felt like a paper cut instead of their quite barbaric tendency to dig at themselves with pins an hour at a time. I know it all sounds quite "off" now but the temporary physical discomfort was much less than the real horror of being a kid who is not in the crowd. Kids are brutal and I was desperate to fit in. I just wanted to be left alone and be cool enough to not get picked on anymore.

    I am not at all a follower anymore but realizing how hard it is for teens and what lengths they go to in order to fit the flock is pretty scary.

    Doesn't mean your difficult child does not need help. Not trying to spread false hope. Just wanted to shed light on what is a very worrisome and mysterious symptom for some parents.
  6. barneysmom

    barneysmom Member

    Farmwife, I think that is an insightful addition to the list of reasons of why kids cut. You are generous to share that. Thank you.

    I think it really helps us to make some kind of sense of it because it is worrisome and mysterious as you said. For myself I felt like some invisible line of doom had been crossed when my kid cut.

    Your reason, to be cool, doesn't sound "off" at all, but is a good and scary reminder of what kind of pressure kids are under.
  7. comatheart

    comatheart Guest

    Today we met with difficult child's counselor. It was a very good session- the best we've ever had actually. The carving/cutting seemed to seal the deal for the counselor. He finally realizes there are definitely some underlying issues. Until now, all he's seen is this quiet kid who sits on his couch. Sure he's heard about all our issues but he's never seen or heard anything directly from difficult child that raised any concerns. (difficult child always says just what you want to hear, he's a smart one!) Between the stealing, lying and cutting the wool was pulled off the counselors eyes and he seems to be able to suddenly see right through difficult child. He called him out on quite a few things and all the while difficult child sat completely emotionless. Didn't bat an eye, no remorse, sadness, anger...nothing! It's not normal and the counselor made that clear. He warned difficult child that the cutting was a major red flag that could land him impatient real quick- not that he wanted that to happen. I think he just wanted difficult child to know how serious of a turn this has taken. The counselor instructed us to CALL him right away if he cuts himself just one more time. He looked at difficult child's legs and arm (3 spots where he's carved himself that we know of) He asked him if it hurt and difficult child responded "No". He asked difficult child if it felt good and difficult child responded "Kind of". The counselor turned to me and used an analogy: If someone puts their hand on a hot burner and I ask them, "did that hurt?" They usually say it did. If I ask them, "Do you want to do it again?" they usually respond "HECK NO!" He tells me it's not normal to do it once, let along move on to do it again, and again. difficult child claims he used a thumb tack...good grief I can't even imagine!!!!!

    At any rate, it was a good session and I feel like we might actually start getting somewhere now. He agreed we need some medication changes and is glad we are going to see a psychiatrist. (am I saying that right?)

    The odd thing? All afternoon difficult child has been wild. Super hyper and almost seems estatic like he was on top of the world happy. VERY unusual behavior for someone who is in deep trouble. I told husband it's like we're on a rollercoaster ride. You just never know what you're going to get with this kid. He's had these mood swings before but I've never seen him go from one side to the other so suddenly. (He was flat affect, emotionless all morning and then later afternoon flipped a 180*!)

    Anyway, thanks for all the comments and responses!