So very tired of this....



It has been a while since I have even felt like logging on here. I have been so depressed; I don’t even want to do anything. Even reading wasn’t interesting me. I have depression; quite honestly I think my 14 yo difficult child has it too. I take my medications; however, she refuses to take hers. When I started feeling so stressed that I just didn’t give a darn about anything, I went to my MD and she increased my dosage. Doing better, but swear that when I start feeling like just maybe I can do this; my difficult child senses it and thinks it is the perfect time to act up.
I admit, my situation is not as bad as some. I have read posts on here that had me thinking “Thank God I’m not dealing with THAT.” But honestly, I am still so overwhelmed and I feel so negative about my difficult child that I cannot stand to be in the same room with her most of the time. I cannot stand the sound of her voice. I’m bitter and angry. I’m TIRED. I work full time, I am a full time student (online so I can be home to assist my husband with the chaos), and I have two other children; one of whom I know also has ADHD, but shows no signs of ODD (I’m keeping my fingers crossed). My baby is only 2 and therefore she is defiant just by nature. I am aware that the odds of her having ADHD are high; since my husband and my other two have it. Trust me, I am not looking forward to it.
I am exhausted. People ask me, “Why aren’t your kids in any activities?” Because I’m too tired!! I get maybe 5 hours of sleep a night during the week. By the weekend, I just want to sleep because I’m worn out. My husband is the same way. Saturdays and Sundays used to be used for cleaning and doing we just look forward to the nap we will get on Saturday and Sunday. Our marriage is still strong, and the love is there, but there is such tension in this house that it’s like constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop. That much stress all the time is exhausting. If the kids were in activities I think we would just reach the breaking point mentally. Both of us are barely hanging on and keeping control as it is.
As I write this I am scolding myself for not appreciating the positive things about my daughter. She is artistic and creative. She can be sweet when she wants to be. She has a good heart. I see potential in her. I guess that is why it so infuriating the stupid choices she is making and has been making since she was 10. It’s just so hard to believe that this incredibly intelligent girl with so much going for her failed 8th grade and had to go to Summer school and now is failing 9th grade with only weeks left in the school year. She doesn’t do her chores, and when she does, she does them ½ …um, “butted”. She just got two referrals on Friday and had ISS on Tuesday. The referrals were for defying a teacher and skipping class. So much for the phrase, “Well at least she only does it at home. It could be a lot worse.”
I try talking, I try reasoning, I try to motivate her with rewards like time with her friends. She will do what she wants and then when she gets a consequence, she simply does not care. I have been told then it must be the right consequence. When I tell you that I have tried just about everything, I am not exaggerating. I have emptied out her room. She has no computer, no tv, no cell phone, and we are going on a year or longer. She doesn’t care. She has been grounded just about the whole school year. She doesn’t care about that either. She is perfectly happy sitting on the couch staring at the wall. She has no motivation to do anything. How many 14 yo girls do you know that have to be TOLD to bathe? Her record is 5 days with no shower before I just couldn’t take it anymore and had to tell her. She’ll walk around in dirty clothes. She wipes her hands on her pants and then wears the very same pair of pants to school the next day.
I have tried my very best to be consistent, even though she doesn’t care. I still keep giving the consequences and still keep trying to find SOMETHING positive that she has done to praise her. There isn’t much, believe me. I can say at least she is not on drugs…that I know of. I toss her room every couple of weeks to make sure. There is absolutely no trust between her and me or my husband. Every ounce of trust we had for her has been obliterated by her lying and her sneaky behavior. She tried pot once. As far as I know it’s only been one time. I didn’t find out because she told me. I found out because I’m a registered EMT. I know that stimulants do not dilate pupils. She tried to blame it on her Adderall. First of all, she didn’t take it most of the time and if it was Adderall that was doing something to her pupils it would constrict them, not dilate them. I was worried about her and I read her diary. She wrote about it in there. I was devastated, but I had to know.
Her therapist and I did not see eye to eye on the whole diary reading incident. He felt I violated her privacy. I feel she does not deserve privacy if she is going to not follow the rules in our home and lie to me. I needed to know if there was something I had to get her help for. She does not see that therapist any longer.
She sees no therapist at this point, as a matter of fact. The reason for this is that my daughter is a master manipulator. She goes in there behind closed doors and makes it sound as if she’s persecuted. Then I have to spend the time in there with my daughter and the therapist advising him/her that things did not go down like that, here’s what REALLY happened and basically have to defend my parenting. I didn’t appreciate paying a copay and taking time off of work to have to explain to a supposed professional how manipulative my ODD/ADHD difficult child is. They should KNOW. Just by the nature of the diagnosis they should know.
I’m also sick and tired of her teachers treating me like I am an uncaring parent, or that I neglect my daughter. I am a firm believer in that sometimes you just have to let ‘em fall on their face for them to learn the lesson. She knew that she would fail if she didn’t do the work. I refuse to treat her like a little baby and get her assignments from her teachers and make sure that she does them. Even if she does do them, for one reason or another she doesn’t turn them in when she gets to school, so why expend the energy? Is her future boss going to make allowances for her since she has ODD? Is the world? The answer is nope. Nobody gives a darn WHAT initials she has, they want the job done or you’re fired and they can hire someone else to replace you. Jobs flipping burgers or working at a clothing store for teens are a dime a dozen. There is always someone who can do the job better than you and get paid less.
I remember someone posting to one of my other posts and saying that I’m more apt to stand outside and get a tree to change to something else than I am to get my difficult child to accept my authoritarian parenting style. It is HARD to deal with someone talking to you like you’re the scum of the earth without getting upset.
I don’t know if any of you can understand my ramblings, but I swear, it gets harder and harder to come home at night…makes you fantasize about running away and just driving; past the house and the tension and the attitude and keep right on going by the house instead of stopping. After all, I’m just trying to teach her how to be a functioning member of society. I am trying to teach her how to clean and take care of herself. I’m not being nitpicky or unreasonable. I just want her to know that she cannot use her disorder as an excuse to give up on anything that she sees as a challenge, and in life she cannot simply refuse to do something because she doesn’t LIKE or WANT to do it!
Ugh! There has GOT to be an answer for me somewhere. I’m sinking fast!


Well-Known Member
First of all, you need to get better help for yourself (and support). As one who suffered years with depression, you can not be your best for ANYONE including you if you have it. in my opinion it would help for you to see a psychiatrist. He could better evaluate your medication. A therapist would also really least it has for me.

Secondly, has your daughter ever seen a neuropsychologist? It could be that her diagnosis of ADHD/ODD is wrong so s he has not gotten the r ight treatment. ODD is in my opinion a unhelpful diagnosis. It does not explain WHY the child is defiant and it rarely stands alone. in my opinion there is a reason your bright child can not or will not do well in school. A neuropsychologist can flush out the possible learning disabilities or hidden disorders that are holding her back. in my opinion a neuropsychologist is your best bet right now since grounding her from all her electronics and natural consequences don't work with her. Something more has to be going on and nobody has yet figured out. She probably needs outside interventions to help her learn how to become a functioning member of society. Don't put it all on yourself. Get outside help.

timer lady

Queen of Hearts
witchie, do you have break from school anytime soon? It seems that there is a lot on your plate right now. Can you work part time?

Let the bathing issue go (as disgusting as this is) ~ there are natural consequences to this, i.e. friends at school will pull away; teachers may take her aside & explain the necessity of bathing, etc. I've never argued the showering or bathing with my tweedles; if worst came to worst I stood downwind of them.:bigsmile:

The homework issue was the same. It was written in kt & wm's IEPs that if homework wasn't completed at home they would lose free time at school to complete said homework. in my humble opinion, it's not worth the crisis each night to get a kid to complete this or that assignment if they aren't in the homework mindset.

Keep your marriage in the forefront. It's incredibly important to take care of first yourself, then your spouse, your marriage & then your children. Without a strong foundation (you, husband & your marriage), your difficult child will continue to cause chaos, exhibit defiance, & triangulate you & husband.

Those are the common sense, immediate things in the home I can suggest.

I'd like to suggest getting a copy of The Explosive Child. It's been used by many parents here (myself included along with Love & Logic books) with some success.

Is your difficult child on medications? Do those medications need adjusting as your difficult child is maturing & hormones are kicking in full force? Any concern of drug use? Sexual activity can send a young lady spiraling as well. Does difficult child get worse around her period? Would hormones/birth control be a consideration to even that out?

I agree if that your difficult child hasn't had a complete evaluation it's time to consider scheduling a neuro psychiatric evaluation.

Take a deep breath, tag off to husband tonight & get a long bubble bath in. Let husband do his thing tomorrow night. Saturday you can be a team & plan some fun family activity (at home) that may pull difficult child back into the fold.

Don't stay away so long ~ this board has helped me daily since 2003 with the tweedles. Even thru my darkest moments.


Shooting from the Hip
First things first - HUGS.
it gets harder and harder to come home at night…makes you fantasize about running away and just driving; past the house and the tension and the attitude and keep right on going by the house instead of stopping
I know this feeling all too well. Not feeling welcome in your own home because one child is terrorizing you...

I think, as others have said, that you need to take care of you first. It's easy to let the kids get all the attention when we are trying - but that will make you feel so much worse...
Witchie ~ I can totally relate to how you feel. My son has ODD as well and it is so frustrating. He is such a good kid and in the rare moments that he is himself and you can sit down and have a normal conversation with him he is so pleasant and funny! But those moments are rare. I love that child with all my heart and I am fighting everyday so that he can have those moments all the time! Right now he is really struggling with his behavior. He is failing school and for the last several weeks he has been refusing to do his class work and sleeping in class. He has been written up for being argumentative, disrespectful, non-compliant, sleeping, etc. He has been in ISS 3 times in the last 3 weeks! He is in an EBD Self Contained class room so they generally put up with a lot and he is still getting office referrals! We too have taken his room door off and emptied out his room leaving nothing but a mattress on the floor. We have to force him to shower and brush his teeth. He will get in the shower and not bathe so we have to smell his hair when he gets out to make sure he at least washed it. He will just wet his toothbrush so we will think he brushed his teeth so we make him do it in front of us! He will wear the same underwear for DAYS! He also wipes his hands on his clothes and he will wear dirty clothes with no problem! He lies all the time so there is not trust there. He hates doing chores and (He will lie and say he did them.) does them half..."butted". Our kids sound just a like so I totally understand what you mean about not wanting to go home. Sometimes we feel like he holds our whole family hostage! You really need to try and find some alone time...maybe you and your husband can go out to dinner....and TRY not to talk about your difficult child. I know that having children such as ours is all consuming but we have to try and find some time to try and escape it....even if it is for just a moment! Good luck and take care of yourself!


Thank you! I know you are right. Sometimes I cannot tell if it's the anger/frustration/exhaustion that's the problem, or the depression. I've been dealing with this roller coaster for so long, I don't know what end is up anymore! I was seeing a therapist for a while...I started to feel better...stopped going. Plus, the therapist that my daughter used to see is in the same office; so it's awkward. I need to find someone else, but I got written up at work for my attendance and I feel like I can't take the time off to go; no one is really open on the weekends either. I know I need to go; even if it's only for benefit of an impartial person who acts like they care what I have to say because I pay them. LOL. Will definitely check out a neuro psychiatric if medications don't work...she hasn't been taking anything for months! She refused to take them..I think if I can get her back to a therapist who can get through to her why she needs to take them and that it doesn't work instantly, she'd do better. She takes them for a week or a few days; says they don't work, and then refuses to take them. Definitely making a note of the taking time for me thing. Thank you! I know you're right...:bag:


Thank you for the hugs...definitely needed them. I feel like I need to apologize for my post...rambling as it did...but I know you all understand. To answer your question about school, I do have short break coming up (thank goodness!). I schedule 2 to 3 week breaks in between my classes so that I don't go nutso. I have quit jobs and school before when my difficult child started having issues. It's a matter of principle now. Someday they grow up and leave..I need something for me. I refuse to let this stand in the way of my goals; so I compromise. I cannot afford to work part time unfortunately, if I could I definitely would because I don't like all of the unsupervised time my difficult child has when she gets home from school. It's definitely a blessing that my parents live right next door and my neighbor on the other side is the school therapist so she knows the deal as well; so I have eyes watching.

I'm working on getting her back on medications...I have to take her back to her psychiatrist. Not an easy thing because I swear the man hates me...the whole diary thing kind of killed it for me. He told me in front of my daughter that he did not agree with me reading her diary. My response was, "Do you have kids?" He said "No." I said, "I can tell, because if you were a father, you would not say what you just said to me. My daughter's safety was at stake; maybe her life; I didn't know. I would do whatever it took, so I read her diary. I understand she feels like I violated her privacy, and at 14 I would have said the same thing, but I wasn't a Mother then. I did it and I am not sorry. I found out she smoked pot. I wouldn't have known if I wouldn't have read it. I would do it again in a heart beat if I had to."

I have heard about that particular book. Will definitely give it a read. I am still working on a transformation program my mom bought me a couple years ago to assist with my daughter since she felt bad she didn't really have any advice to give me. My sister and I were just normal kids..a little rebellion, nothing abnormal, and definitely nothing of the magnitude I'm dealing with in my home on a dayto day basis! At the time my daughter did not seem to have issues as bad as what was addressed on the CDs. She now does, so I'm dusting them off and giving them another whirl. Maybe something will stick this time around that didn't last time.

Didn't do the bubble bath tonight but promise it's on the agenda for this weekend! My hubby travels a LOT so he's been gone more than he's been home since January. I have taken your advice and handed off to him. I expalined to him why; not sure he liked it, but he did it.. I told him I'd like to go on a business trip! I would like to escape for a while. I get jealous he gets to leave...then I feel bad for feeling that way. Boy, I am so neurotic sometimes! LOL

I plan to check in here as much as I can. Just posting what I did last night helped me so much. After I was done typing and posting, i literally feel asleep. All the tension let go, and I was so exhausted I just passed out!

Thanks to all of you for your words of encouragement. They mean a lot to me, and I know you all have been there. It's so much easier to talk to someone who's been through this stuff. when I talk to other people; friends, family, etc...if they don't deal with this kind of thing every day like I do; they just look at me like I have two I'm being overly reactive to a rebellious teen. I wish it were that simple...but I'll keep hoping!


I definitely know what you mean about the "rare moments". I get those with my difficult child but it is usually when she and I are alone. We talk, laugh, joke, it's nice; but then you add the husband, 8 yo difficult child, and my 2 yo easy child to the mix and she goes from funny to just plain evil. She dominates my 8 yo...she does look after him for a few hours when he gets home from school...but she has bossed him around and bullied him his entire life. I really think it seems to help her to have some responsibility where he is concerned; it keeps her busy and she does not have time to do sneaky things like trying to break into my room and steal my cigarettes or Xanax...I know there are many on here who probably are horrified to know that my oldest is responsible for my 8 yo, but drastic times call for drastic measures. I have put a lock on my bedroom door that is an outside door lock, so it requires a key to get in. She picked the regular lock we had. We used to lock it from the inside and shut the door. She; being the smart kid she is, figured out if she just used a small screw driver she could get in there.

My son goes outside to play after he does his homework, so she is really just here. My parents live right next door and my grandfather as well. If there was an emergent situation, they know they can pick up the phone and call or they can go over my parents' house. I simply cannot afford the before/after school care AND the full time daycare for my 2 yo. I am going to put my son in Summer Camp this summer. All day every day is not a good mix for the 2 difficult children. It's just drama waiting to happen.

My husband like yours travels a lot. He's been gone more than he's been home in the past 6 months. Thankfully there were only a couple trips that were 3 weeks long, and the rest are a week at the most. The only thing is, dealing with my oldest and my 2 yo is exhausting. I swear sometimes they act the same way! :bigsmile:

I have said before on here that it helps me to think of the positive things about my oldest difficult child. I will say that she helps with my 2 yo when her Dad is gone, and she does an awesome job. She may complain about it but she still does it. She also does well looking after my 8 yo difficult child. It seems like the responsibility helps her feel trusted and grown up. I am trying to work up to the time that I feel comfortable enough to let her watch the baby (after she goes to bed) so my husband and I can maybe go see a movie or something on the weekend to get a break. I'm not sure if that will happen.

I know what you mean about needing to escape for a bit. It's a sad state of affairs, but I will use grocery shopping as an escape...I hate doing it, but at least I'm alone and I can take my time, stroll around and enjoy the quiet time. My husband helps a lot when he is home. He has become more active in helping me parent my difficult child. I am still the main disciplinarian around here, but he now has finally gotten a clue. Before he thought I was just over reacting. Now he sees; so that helps.

Thank you for the kind words, and I hope you can find some time to yourself this weekend. You deserve it too. :notalone:


New Member
Honestly, I don't see how anyone could work full time, go to school full time, and be the primary caretaker to 3 kids (one a 2 year old), and be really o.k. When things go wrong, you've got such a small amount of wriggle room in your life. I know when I'm stretched thin I have a much lower tolerance for problems and inconveniences. You sound like you're about at the breaking point, and I think most people would be.

Is there any chance you can defer school for at least a few years and focus just on parenting, work, and your relationship?

I'm concerned that both you and your 2 year old cannot really get your/her needs met with so much stress and fatigue happening. Stressed parents make stressed kids.


New Member
Witchie...I'm new to this board, but I totally get where you're coming from. Holy cow...some of what you wrote was MY difficult child and he's only 8. He'll take a study hall instead of turning in homework that has already been done! Even the teachers are perplexed by that.
Bathing is a HUGE issue for us. For awhile we were going through bottles of shampoo like no one's business then I walked in on him taking a shower and it turns out he was putting it in his MOUTH and blowing BIG BUBBLES and no, not using it on his head. Soap is checked daily. One day I told him to brush his teeth and he started in with the tantrum and we walked in the bathroom, wet the brush IN FRONT OF ME and put it back, crossed his arms and said "HMPH". I had to walk out. He won that one, in that he didn't have to brush his teeth, but he got NO attention from me at bedtime.
While I don't wish to drive away because the easy child's are my calming force, there are days I want to take my easy child's and NOT pick difficult child up from school. That's for sure. I totally get the tension in the household...I feel for you.
Just out of curiosity how did your difficult child find out you read her diary? Did you tell her you read it or did you tell her that you could tell cuz of her eyes? I've dropped therapists because we didn't see eye to eye, either.
I hope you find peace soon. I really do.


I do see what you mean, I really do. Thankfully, my school will be done soon, I'll have my Master's and then I'll be done. I am doing this mainly because if I have to send my oldest difficult child to a Residential Treatment Center (RTC), I can afford it. My husband is a great help, and most of the time things run pretty smoothly. I will honestly say that the time after I get home from work until I have a chance to decompress from the day is the worst. I've got my youngest hollering for juice or a snack, my 8 yo is talking as well as my oldest and there is just mass chaos...No matter how many times I explain to the kids to let me get their baby sister settled, and me settled, then I can talk to them, it doesn't seem to sink in. I don't ask for a lot of time, just 10 minutes. I remind them, "This is my 10 minutes. Please go in the other room and leave me be so that I can chill out and concentrate on you guys." I will say that my husband travels...during the times he is traveling, it is stressful, but my oldest difficult child usually steps up quite a bit, and we get a long better...USUALLY. There have been times that we haven't...we've almost had some knock down drag outs, and would have if I didn't have self control. Most of the time though, it's ok. I think part of it is because I am mentally preparing myself for single parenthood while he's away, and I HAVE to be patient and keep it together because there is no one else to hand off to.

I agree with what you say about stressed parents and stressed kids. The way I deal is to put the baby in the stroller and she and I go for a walk, or we go in her room for a bit. My 8 yo comes when he wants, but he usually is too busy playing with his buds outside. :)

I am counting the days til I have my degree...I've come so far now, with only about 5 classes left, I just think it would be best to just push through them and get them done and over with. This is the thing that I do for me. Everything else is for someone else. You know?


" totally get the tension in the household...I feel for you.
Just out of curiosity how did your difficult child find out you read her diary? Did you tell her you read it or did you tell her that you could tell cuz of her eyes? I've dropped therapists because we didn't see eye to eye, either.
I hope you find peace soon. I really do."

Thank you for the kind words, I too have sooo been there! The brushing the teeth thing seems funny to me now, because my oldest difficult child is going to be 15 in July...she did that stuff and was defiant every step of they way. My middle difficult child now 8. He's pretty sedate compared to his sister.

His medications are working right now so he is my little love bug at the moment.. I still have to tell him every night to brush; and I have to smell his breath...BUT he had a not so great visit recently to the dentist so i think he gets it now what will happen if he doesn't brush! Now, if he doesn't have his medications, he is argumentative and whiney, but other than that NOTHING like his older sister.

It's kind of funny, actually, because I just got done sitting them both down and explaining to them that because I parent them differently does not mean I love one or the other any more or less. I love them all equally, but they are all different children with different personalities. Some things work for my 8 yo difficult child that have never worked for my oldest one. My son is pretty easy to figure out at the moment. He is motivated by being able to earn time outside with his friends by doing chores and making sure his homework is complete. That stuff never worked to motivate my oldest daughter. I'm STILL trying to figure her motivation out...and she is turning 15 soon. I just hope I haven't missed my chance with her.

My oldest difficult child, the soon-to-be 15 year old found out I read her diary because I told her I did. One of the main, cardinal rules in my household is honesty. I do not lie and I do not expect my children to lie to me. They know if they tell me the truth about something they did wrong, they will still get consequences, but if they lie and I find out, the consequences will be far more severe. My husband and I are both Military Veterans and integrity and trust are what we believe are the main personality traits of a good, honest person. Now we don't perscute the kids for a little white lie or something trivial, but the important ones like, "No, Mom, why would you think that? I would never do drugs," are taken VERY seriously. My oldest does not have a cell phone, a computer, or any privacy. She has not earned it back. I've told her over and over she just needs to talk to me and tell me truth and I wouldn't have to go looking for it. She actually told me a few days ago when we were having a nice Mom/daughter moment, that she now understands why I did it; although she doesn't like it. She asked me not to do it again and just ask her next time. I reminded her I asked her last time and she lied to me. I also reminded her that trust is earned, it's not something that comes automatically and every time she is caught in a lie, it tears down whatever trust we had started to build up again.

I love my children to bits, and I want happiness for all 3 of them. I hope that we can find something that helps my oldest so that we can go back to being a loving family again. My husband and I understand that with any adolescent there is going to be conflict; but you add ODD in to that mix, and it is quite something..that's for sure!!