I thought it might be useful to share what has helped to improve our difficult children, our family lives and our parenting. For us, our difficult child Duckie has never neatly fit a diagnosis except ODD even though there were lots of "little" things going on. It seems to me that a lot of little problems can be just as bad as a big problem. Consistency helped and so did using the plan outlined in "The Explosive Child" by Ross Greene and giving natural consequences. We also tackled and have learned to keep Duckie's medical issues under control because they were a huge trigger to her behavior. The most recent big step forward was implementing the Wilbarger Protocol (brushing/compressions) for her sensory integration disorder and giving her tools to control her ultra sensitive hearing. You would think she's completely typical... even if you spent a lot of time with her. For our family life... I had to learn to let go. We will never be a normal family and I've had to adjust my view accordingly. Happiness is much more important than a spotless house. I also make sure my husband knows that I value him because life with a difficult child can be a strain of a marriage. And I respect my husband's point of view, even if I don't agree with it. He's part of this family too. As for my parenting: I try to keep a balanced perspective. I'm here to help Duckie acquire the tools to lead a happy, well-adjusted and productive life. her battles are not my battles, her failures are not my failures and her successes are not my successes. She has one go round this crazy life and it's up to her the make the most of it. That's not to say that I'm not heartbroken when she's heartbroken and thrilled when she's thrilled... but it's her life and it's not healthy to live only through her. I also had to stop worrying about what other people think; my theory is that I should do what works for my family and you should do what works for yours. So.., what works for you and yours?