So upset and ANGRY!!Dont know what to do

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by gwenny, Feb 25, 2009.

  1. gwenny

    gwenny New Member

    Ok I am new here and not quite sure where to start. Well I have a 15 year old stepson who has ADHD,ODD,MOOD DISORDER, and CONDUCUT DISORDER. He has lived with us since OCT of 08--4 1/2 months, and our lives have been turned upside down.

    I am currently home schooling him as he cannot behave in school and was getting no education what so ever. So yesterday I noticed he was completly off (just not paying attention or doing what was asked) normal behavior. So last night my husband was going over chemistry with him and he told his father that I never gave him the periodic table (which I might add we had colored it together and glued it into the back of his book),which I showed husband and again its the lying. Ok so I overlooked it but was just upset yesterday but didnt say a word.

    Now this morning he was completly off doodling not doing what he knows he has to do, so I gave 2 warnings that if he didnt straighten up I was going to cancel todays lessons and he would recieve a 0. Well needless to say he kept it up and I told him to go to his room and he could deal with his father when he gets home. Than I looked in his room and sure enough he was going to take a nap to pass the time and I told him to sit on the floor and think about what he did. He stormed into the kitchen and had this stance about himself that was very intimidating, and than went out the front door and sat on the driveway and I told him I was going to call the cops he told me to go right ahead.

    So now I am trying to reach husband and finally get ahold of him and told him what was going on and he said for me to put him on the phone. He yelled at him and than he told his father that I threw him out of the house and that I am cursing at him---Omg why does he have to lie????? Than told his father that the homeschooling is just not working that I want to tear him down after he's doing so well.

    Now husband gets on phone with me and says why am I doing these things???I felt like saying something really nasty but held my cool and just told him he needs to find a long term care facility for him because this is just not working. I am tired of being the punching bag for him. He can't and wont do what he's supposed to do so you give in to him..

    I am sitting here in tears and really angry that in 4 months this kid has destroyed our once peaceful home. What do I do???? I think its best if I move out at this point because I am tired of being the target in my house.

    Oh and also he stepped on the dog today (which he has of history of hurting animals.)

    I'm sorry for such a long rant but I don't know where else to turn. I feel like I am at my witts end.

    Any advise would greatly be appreciated.


    And by the way he's sitting at the computer now doing his work like the little angle he is so he can tell daddy that see it was all Donna and not me.
  2. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    First things first - {{{{{HUGS}}}}}

    You are so definitely in the right place... I have a similar situation with stepdaughter so I understand the punching bag feeling... I have to say that you are more patient than I - I certainly couldn't homeschool!

    husband needs to be on the same page as you. If difficult child is on medications and can't behave in school then husband certainly knows something is wrong. If you can, sit down with husband and (calmly) explain your point of view - let him have his say too. Tell him how you feel when he takes difficult child's side. That right there can put a really nasty strain on a marriage and if the marriage isn't working, there's not much you can do for the kids.

    If husband won't listen - this has happened to me a couple of times, but fortunately it's the exception rather than the rule - document, document, document. Do you have a webcam on your computer? You can use it to record what's really happening.

    Remember - this is not your child - husband needs to be the one to take charge - if he won't - disengage! Refuse to do. And trust me, husband will see very quickly what's going on.

    Another possibility is a PHP (partial hospitalization program), which is part therapy, part school. May or may not work, but it's worth a look if you just can't do it. I know I couldn't.

    And last but not least... Get some time for yourself! No husband, no difficult child. Take care of you first. Great advice I got and it helps so much!

    {{{{{MORE HUGS}}}}}
  3. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Hi again,
    I went back to your post of Feb. 16 and wondered what had happened to you. Did you go back and look at our responses?
    You need to get on the same page with-your husband. If you two parents can't come to an understanding, nothing you do with-your stepson will work out.
    I don't know much about Risperidone but others here can help out with that.
    Your stepson is still not paying attention, clearly, when you're teaching, so I don't know if it's the ADHD stuff of medications, or what. Then he freaks out and comes up with-excuses, when he can't perform.
    Do you know why he wasn't paying attention to begin with? Does he hate chemistry? Are the classes short or long, that is, 45 min., 1/2 hr, 2 hrs? He seems to need things in small time chunks.
    That's all I can offer now, except that I understand your frustration.
    You've got to get your husband alone, maybe for coffee somewhere, and hammer out a game plan.
    My difficult child used to say I did all sorts of things, and vice versa, but now husband and I don't believe him--we always talk to one another when difficult child is out of earshot to compare stories.
  4. gwenny

    gwenny New Member

    I tell my husband all the time not to talk in front of him. Sometimes we agree sometimes we dont. I feel that he just can't except that he's sick, like he would be a failure of a father. I did tell husband that if he does anything else today than I am calling the police and not him. Im just not having this in my home. He will need to move out and deal with this himself. I just feel that I am the one that is doing everything.

    His school work varys from class to class but it should take 30-60 min for each lesson. but he chooses to sit there and not do what hes supposed to. Now I just found him in the kitchen trying to make something to eat and he knows all his meals and drinks are prepared for him seeing as he will eat everything and drink everything so that no one can have it. So he felt that he could make his own today seeing as Im mad. Than I came out of my room to find him laying on the couch pretending to read his social studies text book, which I told him to get back to the table. (this is how he opperates just feels he can do whatever he wants.)urrrr

    I called the therapist and of course got the voice mail. I called the insurance company who told me that I have to talk with the therapist (who we have not me yet or even gotten an appointment for) so now what do I do?

    If I leave he gets what he wanted all along. If I stay im stressed and angry.. urrr

    well just 5 more hours till husband comes home.
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I personally think you all need family counseling. I don't know why stepson with you now, but I'm guessing his mom couldn't handle him. I totally think you need professional help for everyone as you are all affected. I think that expecting you to homeschool this child is out of line. He isn't your child, and he isn't listening to you. Maybe Dad can give him his lessons when he comes home from work or you can send hm to an alternative school (my choice). You shouldn't have to watch him all day. He sounds like he could explode on you and get dangerous. Please, please get family counseling fast. This is a very bad situation. I'm sorry for all of this.
  6. gwenny

    gwenny New Member

    I went back to your post of Feb. 16 and wondered what had happened to you. Did you go back and look at our responses? I did and great advise was given but my husband says how can I talk to people about this.(hes very private) he is the type not to tell your business to anyone.
    You need to get on the same page with-your husband. If you two parents can't come to an understanding, nothing you do with-your stepson will work out.
    I don't know much about Risperidone but others here can help out with that.
    Your stepson is still not paying attention, clearly, when you're teaching, so I don't know if it's the ADHD stuff of medications, or what. Then he freaks out and comes up with-excuses, when he can't perform. hes on straterra for the adhd, but the past couple of weeks have not been so horrible with the homeschooling.
    Do you know why he wasn't paying attention to begin with? Does he hate chemistry? Are the classes short or long, that is, 45 min., 1/2 hr, 2 hrs? He seems to need things in small time chunks. he can do it he just refuses to when he wants.
    That's all I can offer now, except that I understand your frustration.
    You've got to get your husband alone, maybe for coffee somewhere, and hammer out a game plan.
    My difficult child used to say I did all sorts of things, and vice versa, but now husband and I don't believe him--we always talk to one another when difficult child is out of earshot to compare stories.

    I was homeschooling him when he first got here because of the attack on his father. he was not medicated at this point as we were trying to find dr's and get insurance for him. than it came to the point of packing my bags and leaving and than husband finally decided to take him to the hospital. the hospital than suggested that he go to a long term care facility but our insurance would not cover him. so we had to take him home. we put him in school and on the 4th day he was suspended and than threatened to kill another child. I just didnt want to take the chance of him doing that, so I sacraficed myself to home school him again, but told my husband that he needs to be supportive and help me and of course he said he would.

    Thank you for all your help I truely do appreciate it.
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Ohhhohoohohohoo!!! It's the "I-can't-talk-to-people-about-this-syndrome"! Yup, been there done that.
    Got to put a good face on everything. Wow, does that sound familiar.

    Sit down, quietly and calmly, with-your husband, and ask him if it will make it any easier to talk to people about it when his son is in prison? (It's hard not to say that with-o sarcasm. Just keep your voice calm.)
    You've got to get into family therapy to learn some new dynamics.
    Too bad your stepson is older and bigger ... if my difficult child were on the couch, upside down or whatever, with-his soc studies book, I'd be upside down on the couch, reading pages with him. Sometimes he would cooperate, or sometimes, be so humiliated that he would go sit at the kitchen table in defeat and desperation and do his homework. Moms can be so embarrassing!

    Clearly, your stepson's medication isn't enough. Or even the right kind. If he's ADHD, you probably need something for the hyperactivity, but if it's mania, as in Bip, then stims will probably make him worse.

    Oh, another thing for your husband--if he's too embarrassed to have a therapist on his record, pay cash or credit card for the appts, and do NOT file with-the ins. company. We spent close to $1,000 b4 the checkbook balance became more important than husband's ego. Dr's ofcs call it "Self Pay."

    I was so relieved when we were finally able to file! Plus, by that time, the therapist had gotten husband to the point where he understood that there was something "wrong" or "different" with-difficult child, which is hard to admit, husband was also able to accept the idea that the therapist was simply giving us new tools to parent a different kind of kid. We are not out of the box kind of people when it comes to parenting and were in desperate need of ideas. (You'd think that an artist and chiro would be way out of the box, but what they heck.) :)

    You have to be a Warrior Mom and a Warrior Wife. Stay on your husband's case (nicely) until he sees that there is a problem that needs to be addressed NOW.
    If he says, "I'm too tired to talk right now," say, "When would be a better time? How about tonight at 8?"
    "No, I want to go to bed early."
    "Okay, coffee at the corner cafe at 7 a.m. would be great."
    Otherwise, your only choice is to force your husband to make a choice between you and his son. And that's not a good choice. It's a no-win situation.

    You can still have your stepson placed in an Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Or someplace with-professionals. It's going to take a while. Either way, you're going to need family therapy. You're going to have to juggle a lot of balls at once.

    In reg. to the home schooling, I'd slack off a bit. If kids fail in school, they can fail at home. Just make sure you get the school district to understand that it is not because you aren't a good teacher. There's got to be a way you can fill out the paperwork to get around this.
    Homeschoolers here can help you out here. I'm not saying just let him flunk, but right now, you can't even get him to give you the time of day.

    I hope your son is doing okay. I recall that you were concerned about him. Be sure to praise him and pay attention to him (which I'm sure you do). Do not compare the kids, especially within earshot of one another. There is no comparison. At all. It can only do damage.
  8. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Donna, the public school must educate him by federal law. If he was having problems related to his disability on day 4 of school, it seems perfectly reasonable to request that the school conduct an evaluation for an IEP. If the school cannot educate him in his current setting, they are obligated to find an alternative setting that meets his needs. In my humble opinion, I'd be pursuing that route PDQ before agreeing to homeschool him. I know I would have a very hard time homeschooling my own son, who is the same age as your difficult child and has a bipolar diagnosis.

    Which leads me to some suggestions on how you should deal with him until his school situation is straightened out. First, read The Explosive Child. You will get a better understanding of how your difficult child thinks and reacts as well as some suggestions on how to handle him.

    Second, some of his behaviors border on typical teen rather than disordered thinking. I don't know many teens who would honestly care if you as a homeschooling teacher threatened a 0 if they didn't do their work. The consequence doesn't hold much weight nor is it motivating to make him do his work. I also think it's pretty typical of teens to want to nap when they have nothing better to do. Personally, I think you need to find positive ways to motivate him rather than negative ways to dissuade him from unwanted behavior.

    Third, I think it's critically important that your difficult child be evaluated thoroughly and treated for his disorders. I suspect, from my years of hanging out on this board, that a mood disorder is fueling oppositional and conduct-disordered behaviors as well as ADHD-like inattention. When the right medications treat the mood disorder, the other behaviors will typically improve. Is he still on Strattera? Is it making things better or worse? Not only is Strattera effective in only 40 percent of kids with ADHD, but it also can make kids, particularly those with mood disorders, more moody, angry and irritable. How much Risperdal is he taking? There's a chance it's not high enough to address his behaviors, and it might need to be augmented by a mood stabilizer (Depakote, Lithium, Lamictal, Trileptal and Tegretol). If you're not working with a child/adolescent psychiatrist who has expertise in mood disorders, I strongly recommend you find one. A neuropsychological evaluation would certainly be in your family's best interest as well.

    Hang in there.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2009
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Who evaluated him and is medicating him? Has he had a neuropsychologist evaluation? Does he see a Psychiatrist (with the MD?) Straterra can make a mood-disordered child even act worse. Are you convinced this child is getting the right treatment? Is hub open to having a fresh opinion on this child? Are there any psychiatric problems or substance abuse (which is a big red flag for mood disorders) on either side of this child's family tree? Maybe something hub doesn't like to discuss?
    I agree with smallmom. I think he's probably been misdiagnosed.
  10. WSM

    WSM New Member

    Boy am I sorry. My handle stands for Wicked Stepmother. In 3 years I'm going to be standing in your shoes.

    What helped for us is nanny cams and web cams, I also have a personal recorder. Train a camera on the study table. If you can, some nanny cams can hook to the web and your hubby can look in from time to time.

    The cameras don't change the behavior, but now you have an accurate record of what happened, so there's no doubt between your husband and you. He will come up with other excuses tho.

    My cell phone has a recording function, as do lots of mini recorders. If you carry one in your pocket, you can switch it on whenever there seems to be an eruption, then there's no doubt who said what to whom.

    Again, it doesn't change the behavior, it just makes it a bit harder for them to come up with reasons why they are misbehaving. They still always do come up with the reasons however (and it's never their fault).

    I have to say I think it's very unfair of your husband to make you so responsible for his son. Does the high school have alternative programs for troubled kids? Almost all do. I know there's a stigma attached, but these programs have dealt with these problems before.
  11. gwenny

    gwenny New Member

    Thank you all for your great advice. We had difficult child admitted to a hospital for 7 days and they gave the diagnosis of mood disorder and adhd. They said he was moonlighting and he would need to stay longer, but of course the insurance we have do not cover more than 7 days so he came home. We left with a recomendation of putting him into a longterm care facility and serious counseling. So we found a MD Pysch doctor who we met with 2 times and she diagnosed him with ODD and Conduct disorder.

    We than received the state insurance who said we have to get new doctor's because the one I see is private, so once again I made the appointment's got all the infor and attended the meeting last week and was hopeful as the woman saw right through him. Have not heard anything on the therapy as she said she was putting an action plan together and would find a therapist that could help us with all his problems. (is there anyone out there that can help him).

    As for a Neuro psychiatric I was researching this to find out what it is and how to go about getting one. There's just never enough time in the day to do everything. I am the cook, chauffer for my son, laundry woman, sick from my illnesses I have (arthritis and no immune system due to medications). I just feel like where in god's name is my time. I feel like I can't leave my house because this child has stolen info from his mom and brother (social security #'s Creditcard #s.) What he will find when I'm not here. Than I have to take my son from his home, and than there is the dog who he I feel is just waiting to hurt.

    As for my husband I have told him on more than one occasion that he is going to wind up going to prison if he does not do something. I feel that this child is definitly capable of harming me and this scares me to death. None of my friends know what to say except but to leave my husband.

    I was a patient person who never got angry. I have faced many things in my life but I have always looked at it in a positive way. I just can't seem to be me anymore. I could never dream of going to the corner and have a cup of coffee with my husband because there would be no one to supervise difficult child. We tried this one time and he threatened to kill my son.

    It's really hard to want to help someone who can do and say evil things to and about you. I am to a point where I just need to make a choice as what to do, leave or stay. If I leave than what kind of wife am I, and if I don't leave what a bad mom I am for having my son exposed to this. I just wish that I could hit the lottery and buy an island for my difficult child. Oops did I say that out loud.

    I know I am rambling but my thoughts are going faster than my fingers.

    I thank you all again for your wonderful unconditional help.

    I say prayers everynight now with everyone in them that we can find the strength and courage.
  12. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Gosh, I've got big sized male friends who have come over to pinch hit for me. Can't you get some guy to come over and pretend he's fixing the computer or something? (So difficult child doesn't think he has a babysitter.)

    You've GOT to talk to your husband alone. I cannot emphasize that enough.

    I know what you mean about how you used to be a nice, gentle person and now you can't be yourself. It ***** the life right out of you.

    You cannot saddle yourself with-this kid 24/7. Everyone needs a break. Even God took a break on the 7th day.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2009
  13. gwenny

    gwenny New Member

    Terry you made me crack the first smile today!! thank you for the comment even god rested on the 7th day.

    I'm on the 10000000000 day!! I need sleep, I think im gonna go to a friends house for a few days, and let him and his father be with each other.

    Thank you again..
  14. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Sounds like a great idea - your friends are people that will listen, and make you a drink if you need one!

    Hang in there. And I will repeat myself - the friends idea is awesome! Let husband handle difficult child for a few days...
  15. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Oh, I thought she was just going over for a few hrs, StepTo2. Yeaaaahhh, that's the ticket. Stay for a few days, Donna. :)
  16. gwenny

    gwenny New Member

    Just an update.. My friend who is single is actually have a friend staying with her, she said I could still come but I would feel funny intruding on them. Oh well husband came home and said blah blah blah. nothing worth writing it's the usual what are we going to do. I said sorry there is no more we for a while, this is your child and you need to take care of him. (felt bitter sweet saying that out loud) but now he is yelling at him because all the school work he didnt do today my husband is doing with him now.(LOL) let him get a taste of what I go through. Lets see how long this will last as husband gets up at 5 leaves by 545 and dont get home until 7-730.

    I told him he needs to take some action to get difficult child committed to a long term care facility because we cannot handle him here. He agree's but we have so many steps to go before that can happen. I gave him the folders of info and told him to sort through it and start calling.

    Ok after all of this now I still feel guilty and horrible for some things I said to husband but I'm just mad.

    Well that's it for now.

    Thank you all again from the bottom of my heart for listening and being supportive.

  17. I have often heard that the stepmom or stepdad are not supposed to be the disciplinarian. It has to be the birthdad or birthmom if you want to get the best result.

    If not possible people can benefit from having a professional helping the parents to set up rules both parents agree on. I think that your stepson are "shopping".

    Our daugther has tried the same and we have gone so far to not giving her an answer at once but postphone our answer if we suspect that she has asked this question to one of us before. Then I would text my husband so we can show her united front. It has helped us alot, but we were too slow to realize that and we are in the process of taking a further step.
  18. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    I agree - I have recently informed husband, difficult child and easy child that I won't make any decisions as he is their legal guardian. In the past they got around us a couple of times, so our standard response was, "If I ask Dad what he said..." and "If I ask stepmom what she said...", and then, randomly, we would ask. Drove them nuts but since it was random they never knew... And did get caught once or twice before they figured it out.

    Now since I have "washed my hands" I am only asked when and if it affects me (such as friends coming over, etc.).

    Gwenny, remember - if you are telling husband horrible but true things about difficult child, don't feel bad about it! husband needs to know! You are so doing the right thing.