What do you experts think of her symptoms?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by allhaileris, Apr 3, 2012.

  1. allhaileris

    allhaileris Crumbling Family Rock

    I'm pretty depressed today, thinking about daughter, I haven't spoken to her since Friday when I saw her. I know she's in a new home as of that day and I'm not sure if they have my phone number, and of course, daughter can't seem to memorize it. While I'm sitting here feeling sorry for myself, and reading the plights that many of you have had, I'm wondering if anybody could give me some insight into her symptoms and what else might be going on in her head. Obviously nobody here is a doctor, but I'm trying to put the pieces together for when she does see the doctor.

    She has High-Functioning Autism (HFA), mostly social issues, communication issues (needs time to formulate sentence, can't talk if stressed), some auditory issues. Does the lining up of things. Now self-abuse, it's been witnessed before, but she's never left a mark on herself until now.
    Probably a little Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), but very little.
    ODD, which covers the lying and a little stealing. It's just a lot of lying, and she's the best liar I've met.
    Has an Learning Disability (LD), in math and auditory processing.

    The issues I'm not sure where they fit are:
    She gets in a rage when she's really mad (like if I won't let her watch something on TV, something stupid), runs away, takes my phone so I can't text husband. She's been violent to me, but it's never been bad, just a swat to my arm. When she gets into one of these rages (fugues?) I think she forgets the pinnacle of her behavior. Every time she goes through one of these, I know when she starts crying that it's done.
    She can't be nice to the cats. husband thinks she's actually being mean on purpose. I think she just doesn't think of them thinking and wanting to be a cat. She'll throw things at the cats if she finds them hiding under the bed. Both daughter and the cats are finally at the point where one of them asks her for attention, but won't go in her room, one will let her pet her, but won't go in her room, the third just stays away from her period.
    Disrespects her belongings, destroys her things. Her room has this constant layer of little piece of paper, mostly trash, some things she's actually ripped up into pieces. She breaks pencils. She has admitted to beating on her dolls out of frustration.
    Sees things in her closet. This is a weird one, because I know she can see ghosts, but the way she describes these, they don't seem like ghosts. But there was something in our old apt (nothing that bothered us though), so I can't rule anything out. So far she hears them quietly chatting in non-english with each other, but not to her.
    She has said she wants to stop hurting us but can't. There is something eating at her inside that she can't control.

    She has not been moody, depressed or manic.

    My sister told me last night that our Dad had been diagnosis'd with borderline Schizophrenia back in the mid-70s (he's a Vietnam Vet with I'm sure plenty of PTSD at that time). Thanks Dad for ever telling us, who may have inherited the gene! :(

    Is there something other than ODD and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) that I need to be reading up on? I'm sure there are other things that are not normal behavior and I've gotten used to them or can't think of them now. I just worry so much that she has some kind of psychosis going on and want to be prepped to help her when I get her back.
  2. SocRocks

    SocRocks New Member

    I wish you the best of luck.
  3. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Looking at your signature, the only diagnosis was from the school??? They aren't legally allowed to diagnose. They can assess for services but not diagnose. As for the ODD, that's just a catchall for "she doesn't like being told what to do but we don't know why so we'll give her this label". When you mention her raging over not getting what she wants, that is typical Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) behavior. It's called change of mindset and kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) really struggle with this. They get an idea in their head and to them, that is what IS going to be. Then when it doesn't happen that way, they don't know what to do so they act out. If she has speech delays, she probably doesn't have the ability to put her frustration and anger and anxiety into words. That can be additionally frustrating for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids which will fuel the rages.

    Is she lying and stealing or is she telling you HER truth and taking what she doesn't really realize isn't hers. Kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) have a harder time differentiating between the two. difficult child 1 "lies" when he is simply telling me his perspective on things. To me they are lies but to him they are his reality. He really does think differently. difficult child 1 also picks up things that interest him when he sees it laying somewhere. He never stops to think that something like loose change really BELONGS to anyone, it was just laying there. These are issues we are working on constantly.

    Self-injurious behavior in a kid with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) can be extreme sensory seeking. Has she ever been evaluated by an Occupational Therapist NOT associated with the school? That's where you need to go to figure that one out.

    As for the cats, I'm not sure. We don't have pets so maybe someone else can chime in on that one.

    It sounds like you REALLY need to have her evaluated by a neuropsychologist, Occupational Therapist (OT), and Speech Language Pathologist (SLP). With my difficult child 1, when he wasn't getting all the help he needed (MOSTLY Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and anxiety) things were BAD. Since we have gotten the services outside the school and appropriate accommodations in school, things have calmed down significantly.

    Read the books The Explosive Child by Ross Greene AND What Your Explosive Child Is Trying To Tell You by Dr. Doug Riley. You will be amazed at what they have to say. Both have been a godsend for us...and I'm not exaggerating.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Well...in spite of your beliefs, if she thinks she is talking to ghosts, I would think she should be checked for possible hallucinations. There is a lot of mental illness in her birthfather's family tree and I wouldn't ignore it. JMO
  5. keista

    keista New Member

    Love the way Tedo explained Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) as relating to your daughter. I totally agree.

    Other concern I see is something that you mentioned, but then seem to ignore as well - schizophrenia. First, you say you know she sees ghosts. Are you 100% sure. As in have you been able to independently confirm information she's gotten from a ghost and linked it to a deceased person? I 100% believe that ghosts exist and that some ppl are 'gifted' with the ability to see/hear them. However, it is just as likely that a person has some form of psychosis going on. I don't know the statistics but I figure them to be about equal.

    Since you just found out that your Dad had this, you cannot completely rule it out as a consideration.

    Wish I could help you with the cat stuff - all the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) ppl I know are all great with animals(definitely better with them than with ppl) Although it doesn't sound like she's being purposely mean to them - just not knowing how to treat them.
  6. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    My Duckie has sensory processing disorder and has super sensitive hearing (down to -15dB). Before receiving Occupational Therapist (OT) therapy (specifically, the Wilbarger Protocol, aka brushing/joint compressions), her perceptions of the world were often "off". Lights were too bright, sound to loud, every touch was rough. There were many times you could have said she was exaggerating or even lying, but I truly think it was just her reality.

    An example was when she thought she could hear people whispering (scared the **** out of me!) in the house. It turned out to be our baseboard heaters which needed to have air bled from their lines. The scary thing? husband and I could barely hear it down in the basement, next to the boiler but she could hear it well upstairs in her bedroom. It's also important to note that she didn't really know what she was hearing so her mind filled in the blank with what made the most sense to her: the slight hissing sounded like whispers.

    So, from my point of view, I would definitely hit the Occupational Therapist (OT) hard. It may make a positive impact on her perceptions.

    The other thing to look at is her frustration level. I'm sure Eris, despite her High-Functioning Autism (HFA) and other problems, is a reasonably intelligent person. Imagine yourself in her shoes: where it is so difficult to make herself understood. What appears to be manipulations and lies could very well be her (poorly) trying to get what she wants in a world that doesn't make much sense to her. So she's very frustrated and angry much of the time.
  7. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    TM said it well. I just want to add a few things.

    Your father's borderline schizophrenia diagnosis could have been spectrum-ish but high-functioning. A book I've read ("Life Behind Glass" by Wendy Lawson) describes how the author was diagnosed as schizophrenic, and institutionalised, because she gave a typically autistic answer to the question, "Do you hear voices?"
    She said, "Of course, doesn't everyone?"
    Turned out, she meant that of course you HEAR voices, you don't SEE them.

    Females do present differently with autism. They are more complex, often more socially adept, splinter skills can be ore confusing. With easy child 2/difficult child 2, she used to cut herself in order to have a physical appearance matching her emotional feelings. In other words, she felt bad, felt like she should be bleeding, so she made herself bleed. There are techniques you can use, but you need to understand why it is happening because reasons are different. If the cutter is seeking pain, an elastic band snapped on the wrist can provide the pain without the injury. If they want to see blood, drawing on themselves in red pen can be a healthier alternative.

    I do think a neuropsychologist assessment would be a good idea. The school assessment results may be useful but a thorough assessment is more accurate.

  8. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    I think that if the only "diagnosis" that you have is from the school that you need to get her into see a doctor. I'm not sure what High-Functioning Autism (HFA) stands for, but it sounds like there is alot more going on. Will your insurance cover an exam by a neuropsychologist? I'm not a doctor, but since you asked, my first thought from what you had written was schizophrenia. I hope that I'm wrong.
  9. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    High-Functioning Autism (HFA) = high functioning autism
  10. Bunny

    Bunny Guest

    Thank you!!
  11. allhaileris

    allhaileris Crumbling Family Rock

    No, she's been diagnosis'd by the regional center as Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified, but they were basing the diagnosis off of MY answers, and I told them repeatedly that I thought I scored her too normal because I don't have anything to compare it to. When her teachers filled out the forms last year, they all scored her worse that I did, as I explained to the regional center.

    I'll have to try to figure out how well her hearing really is. It could attribute to the monsters in her closet, that she's hearing weird voices from neighbors (we were in an apt until a couple weeks ago). As per the ghosts, at age two we went to my mom's house (don't see her often), it was the middle of the night and she was stumbling up the stairs to go inside. She stopped and said "hi kitty", only to find out the next day that was exactly where my sister buried her cat. There have been other instances as well. But I totally think it's possible that her monsters are hallucinations, her imagination is very vivid.

    I've worried about schizophrenia before, and found that out about my Dad, but going to Vietnam and the PTSD could have been part of the diagnosis too. I'm guessing.

    So a neuropsyc (which we probably have to find out of the county), Occupational Therapist (OT) (this should be easier, I know there is a place in town). What's an Speech Language Pathologist (SLP)? Speech and Language Pathologist??? She's gotten speech/language help at school, has since she was 3. It's the one thing that has been worked on and she's improved a lot. I know she's sensory seeking, but I guess when she's stressed, it must come out more. I hope that with some Occupational Therapist (OT) (and unfortunatley medications) many of her issues can be dealt with better.

    I do wish I knew why she got frustrated so easily. Both her teachers and we have been encouraging her to write to get feelings out. I know this has helped her a little, I just wish she didn't tear out the pages after and throw them away!
  12. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Yes, Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) = speech language pathologist.
    They handle a wide range of things, and it sounds like she's been getting good help - but may not have had testing for the full spectrum of APDs, for example. You might see if the school can test for those - or you may need to get that tested privately, as we did. Make sure the testing covers "auditory figure ground" - seems like if they test for that one, they are covering the others also.
  13. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) can do some of the testing. If you've had the same person all this time, they would be a good choice for a start. In my opinion. That opinion may not be shared by a neuropsychologist clinic.