Updating difficult child situations all around


Old Hand
I don't like posting a lot about the difficult children as it seems it's pretty much the same stuff, just different day (ssdd). The youngest difficult child seems to being doing the tiniest bit of well I don't know really. His foul mouth is there and I really feel often it is reflexive in nature in how he uses it. For example I will call his name and he will answer "what B****?" (Or some other combination of foul wording) NOT ok and not acceptable! But after looking back over when this started occurring I can only find where he picked up the wording but not why he's using it on me, which generally he is ok with me and would normally use it on his sisters but doesn't. You see he picks up words period and then uses them as I call "catch phrases" and repeats them often. It doesn't matter what the word or words are or where heard them (could be off the TV or from someone). It's frustrating as all get out and there is nothing that works to to get him to stop with the language.

He is still stealing on a low level when there is something he wants around the house. Usually a tool or food that he is allergic too and isn't under lock and key. Again, on a minor level so we have made some minor progress on this. I am struggling with him getting up for school in the morning desperately. He just really fights this to no end. I think there are several reasons. He's never been a morning person (except when his body gets him up on it's own), he's having issues at school though minor, it's coming the end of school in about 6 weeks, and finally there are a couple of teachers that he really has struggled with all year that I find even I can't reach to help them work with him (you know the kind). I' have tried adjusting bedtime to make it easier for him but it doesn't matter if he goes to bed earlier or not, the end result is always the same. I truly believe that a good percentage is that he is just not really a morning person and that is a hard thing to fight. Also at school some of the issues he's having is regarding homework (which I posted about before). I just had a review meeting for his BIP. The behavior specialist for the school was at this one and something interesting occurred. He pointed out to them that if homework is the issue and the kid is doing fine in his school/class work and his test grades are fine then why not just take away the homework requirement? Exactly the same thing I have spoken of before that it is unnecessary! He also, in listening to the conversation pointed out that my son sounded as if he was on the spectrum. I said that this is something I have been saying for a long time and have been trying to get him tested for but have yet been able to accomplish. Finally, someone else can see it and he did so just by listening to a conversation and hearing about his behaviors! Yay but it's not really going to help me other then it made me feel good to actually hear it.

His worker (kind of like a mobile therapist) has been going to his school once a week and then usually on the same day comes to house to speak with me. Can't say he is very helpful other then giving me information on community programs (like big brothers, boys & girls club, social skills classes, etc. things like that) and being a sounding board for what has been going on, what I've been working on with him and what he's been doing. This is the second one as the first one had to leave after a health matter took him away. The first day this one came to us I almost thought this one wouldn't be working with us because he came on like "you need to be consistent, you need to do this, that and the next thing" when he hadn't even spoken to me, didn't know me or my child or what I have or hadn't done. I thought great some new young guy fresh out of school who hasn't got a clue. I even said to him I'm not sure this is going to work. Middle difficult child's worker was here that same day and she was kind of floored by what he did too. I did, however, immediately report to his supervisor his actions and such. The next visit things were very different. We had a long talk and I learned about his background (which was far different then I suspected) and I thought things would work out perhaps differently. I'm not sure again though for two reasons. The first is that I'm realizing that I don't see what he's able or doing that can really help that I'm not already doing (other then giving me information that I probably could have found on my own). He is being a sounding board and on some level it's a good thing because it's a relief for someone outside this house to hear what's going on to save my sanity and know the craziness and I feel a little more protected should something or someone get a bug up their butt and do something stupid (been there done that in the past).

I know there is nothing more we can do medication-wise. There just isn't. We need difficult child to mature now a bit more for more things to work out with him as he has to want to do better over all. His food allergy is a big complication and the maturity to want to not eat bad things has to kick in to help himself better in managing behaviors. The mix of medications we have for the ADHD and the food allergy management, at least ones we have that have assisted us in managing it PRN, are the best we are going to have.

Finally, the good part is that young difficult child is very entrepreneurial in nature! Late fall last year and into early winter he went around neighborhood and cut lawns to earn money. He also raked a few lawns. He earned a bunch of money, though that money ended up coming back to me for damage he did to house during a rage and he didn't like that one bit! He started that back up again. :) Of course in many cases he has used our gas and lawn mower to do it (and not paid for the gas!) but the point is the kid works his butt off doing it on his own. This time around his older sister suggested to him to save his money for something big instead of small things he was getting like he had gotten a bunch of things for his bike (headlights, etc,) video game, a bike, and junk otherwise. Oh I forgot to mention that he went to a couple yard sales in neighborhood and bought furniture for the game room (ok it's a spare room that the kids use for watching tv and playing video games). It only had a tv and futon in it. He got and entertainment center for it, shelving, and a big huge table. He even brought home and end table for me but it's not one I could ( or honestly would) use but he was at least thinking of me! :) Anyway, I digressed. His sister's suggested prompted him and because he has negotiated things with people in the past and opportunity came up for a riding lawnmower. He bought it. You know a riding mower that was only $40 had to have stuff wrong with it. Of course it did but I'll be darned if that kid has not been faithfully not working on it with a neighbor daily. It's a battery and apparently a starter (seems that's what they are saying now) issue. Batter got replaced by him and now he will replace the starter. I'm impressed with his ethic on working for and towards this. If only I could get him to work as hard here at home on the things he needs to do as well as his school work. I could put him as easy child.
Ah well in the future, I have hope for this kid. I really do! :)

Now on to middle difficult child. Not so encouraging with her at all. She is my tough cookie. No answers all the way around and really not many new or good things. We did have a slight change for a while. A baby step but they are not consistently holding with her. We have tried 3 of the mood stabilizers and she has failed all 3 now. Each one had a bad reaction. She continues to steal food at every opportunity. She will go into her older sisters room if it is not locked (she has a key lock) most times for revenge if she is mad at her for some reason and steal her soda or any other food that she might have stashed there (aka junkfood) to keep for herself at night. Remember older sister is 20. Other times it's just because she wants the food like with the rest of the food in the house she steals. That food it's again, opportunistic. It also is under lock and key and generally she doesn't have access to the key and it's most often kept locked. There are rare occasions that someone forgets to lock up and by jeezus if she isn't like a hoover bee and knows it immediately and steals! Or, if some one slips up and she connives them into allowing her to use the keys because "trust me, I only want to get a drink or I only want to get this and I promise I won't get anything else" and she immediately sneaks something additional out at the same time. Case example, the other night older sister accidently left her keys out on counter over night. Middle difficult child saw them there through the night when she came down to try and forage. She said "I didn't touch them cause I didn't want to get in trouble". We find out youngest difficult child ended up taking the keys in the morning and then he returned them. But, come to find out that middle difficult child HAD used them and stole a whole box of ice cream sandwiches and ate them (there were 12 in the box with only 1 gone out of by the time she took it). She ate the entire box and this was the same day she stole 5 cans of soda from sisters room and drank them as well! :( Clearly this eating issue is here to stay and I do not have a clue how to help her and no one is offering any up or addressing it.

She still continues to have her outbursts, still doesn't do what she is suppose to at any given time, and still having issues in school with peers. She complains to me and teachers on a daily basis about the kids and things they are doing. I'm told that most of the time it's overly dramatic and so because they've basically given up on listening to her or brush her off, she either comes home really mad about it or really upset (depending on what happened) and takes it out on me/us. She has gone so far in her class (it's basically a resource for all her core) and takes note all day long of who does what wrong and hands it in to teacher (tally form). No kidding! Her team worker was shocked to learn from this teacher how picky and organized she was at school, organizing the classroom yet at home everything is a mess and she refuses to do anything. She will make messes everywhere. She just drops things and leaves them. Her room is an utter pigsty.

She has continued to issue all kinds of threats to any one of us when she doesn't get her way. She threatened to slash the tires on the car several times. Just yesterday because her sister declined to take her to the library and Y with her (she expected to go). They have been going together but not all the time. It's always contingent on if she has done what was asked of her #1 and it depends on what class is going on at the Y. You see we have found a small (baby step) way to get her to do something in the house. If she wants to go then she must empty dishwasher, or pick up a room, or clean litter boxes, etc. Something to earn going. It's the only way we can get her to do anything and thankfully it's actually working! But yesterday there was no way she could go. She had done nothing towards going and even if she had the class that was at Y was not something she could do as her physical limitation would have prevented her. Unfortunately she had gotten it in her head she was going before she even came home from school so when she got home and learned she wasn't going this set her off and she began her rant, rage, threats. So from threats (for a while we thought she actually did slash the tires), to letting the dog out of crate, locking people out of house, etc. It was a wild couple of hours with her. Since I am a warrior parent and have well learned detachment and ignoring things when needed, I was able to get through it but oldest difficult child has her own issues and simply can not ignore or detach and feeds into it all. That doesn't help situation. No way!

Worker and I have discussed placing her in partial and or residential but, as with and actual therapist, we don't think it will matter. She refuses to talk to anyone so like with therapy none of it will work. She'd have to talk in partial for it to work or we'd just be wasting time. In residential, same thing. It'd just be warehousing her, per se, and at the same time giving her an opportunity to pick up other behaviors that she would be exposed to to bring back home and use on us. She does stuff like that. She copies people all the time. Very Opportunistic. For example, cutting. She is not a "true" cutter but because people at school were cutting and getting attention she tried it ONCE for attention in her own way. Didn't like the type attention it got her none the less but did it at first anyway. I could tell you a bunch of other things she's tried or done just because others have done it.

It's also a processing thing with her as always. She just doesn't "get things". She has tried starting up a bully club at school because she is a big defender of bullying and generally she is not one who would ever bully but defend anyone who has been bullied. Well just recently she did something horrendously horrifying to me and I had a hard time with it. She went and said to another child who suffered a stroke and has struggled very hard to come back with walking and said "you walk like an old man". Let me explain this fully. You see her brother said this to her because she walks like this herself. This is sibling stuff and while NOT ok, it's within the house and siblings say stuff to each other. So she said it to this kid (then justified it to the teacher as to why she said it to him because "her brother said it"? huh? really?). She did not get it in her head or truly understand what or why she did what she did was wrong. She didn't take it as a bad thing! The teacher was just as upset and concerned as she knows difficult child generally is not someone who would be expected to do something like that and was shocked.

I just don't know what to do with this kid. It's terribly frustrating as I don't know how to help her or where to take her to get help because traditional mental health system is just not helping her and school is becoming frustrating. She has all resource for core and then electives and enters high school next year. She's barely making it (of course she flies with A's in resource becuase it's too easy, f's in regular) socially and being eaten alive and is so miserable. We just can't help her. No one seems to know how because....well I believe it's because no one knows what's wrong and I say there is something in her brain and until that is addressed or found we won't be able to!!

Finally, oldest difficult child. I could put this in the PE column but I'm including it here because it is part and parcel to everthing in the household going on. I can't help her with school situation. It just boils down to financial and she has to pay it all off before she goes back to ANY school now. She's adjusted her game plan, which is great and now she wants to go into nursing. She figures it is a quick and relatively (for her) way to get a good paying job that she is garaunteed work anywhere (which means she can travel around which is something she wants to do). Then she can also afford to continue on in her other goal at school for what she really wants as well without worry. She is on new medications and on some level it has helped her. It's just having to deal with the difficult children that is hard for her, mainly middle difficult child. She can't move out as she is not ready to do so mentally or even maturity-wise and we both know it. Financially either. Having to live here is very very difficult for me as an adult and knowing what to do. I can't imagine being her with her issues so I feel bad but I also know that there are some more things she could do that would help to make it a little better for her. Probably easier for me to say then for her to do I guess. I'm just glad she has new doctors and is seeing a therapist now and has found another medication. Oh and she finally has the dog of her dreams that she has wanted for years, since my divorce when ex took her dog. This has helped immensely in that it gives her focus and something that she has to be responsible for and gives her companionship. :)

That's my update with the difficult children. My health hasn't been the greatest unfortunately. I've been doing some struggling and that always makes it harder for me and that usually makes them even worse as they take advantage of the situation too. Funny, they do an awful lot of complaining about mom not being able to do this or that, or saying nasty things how all I can do is ********* but as they have been told by others besides me that if they cooperated and didn't do half of what they did, my health could be a little better (not great but better as stress makes it very much worse) and things could be a little different. Nope, of course they have no desire to do what is needed even when they are blatantly told "what are you going to do some day when your mom isn't here?" (a very real situation) ~big sigh~


Love me...Love me not
Thanks for the update!

Sounds like there are some positives in there....that is good to hear! (Youngest buying himself a riding mower? how cool is that?)