i NEED to talk to ADD/ODD parents, please!!! *UPDATE AT TOP*

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Posted 10/5/2012 by PEAce sign in NSBR Board
 

PEAce sign
i'm not superstitious, but i am a little stitious.

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Posted: 10/5/2012 7:41:23 AM
*UPDATE*
had a pretty smooth, typical weekend. i was able to spend some time yesterday at school where his teachers and others expressed concern and were asking for advice - "what do you want us to do when he behaves like this?"

i saw the therapist today, without him, to discuss his behavior. she has us on a fast track to get a psych appointment but she feels that something at school is triggering his impulsivity - i.e., his ADHD, more so than ODD. we're starting the process of getting him an IEP or a 504, and she asked me in the meantime to ask for a bump of his adderall - 5mg in the afternoons - to see if that helps. one thing with adderall, you know quickly if it works or not.

so that's where we're at today, until i have a meeting with the school officials and a meeting with the psych. she mentioned possible mood disorder. who knows? poor kid.

_______________________________

my 8 year old is out of control. he's been in school for about 7 weeks now, and about once a week on average i get a call from the school saying they 'can't control him' and that i need to come pick him up.

my gut tells me it's not his ADD meds, but it's that spot where you get with a kid where you know you can't engage them, he's not listening, he has to ride this out and will come back around. at school they really don't have the luxury to handle things as i would at home. he's a safety issue, he won't be contained in a classroom, and they keep trying to talk to him where i would mostly ignore his behavior until he calms down and THEN we can talk.

yesterday i got the call again. he was full of energy around 3:00 in class and got in trouble for pestering others. he couldn't stop/control himself. he ended up running around the playground and refusing to get on the school bus. of course, it's a very busy time of the day. and his little brother got on the school bus. so i was in the position of having to pick him up while desperately trying to find someone to meet my 7 year old at the bus stop.

when i got to school, my son was on the OTHER side of the school yard fence, which backs up to railroad tracks. two staff persons and one volunteer were hanging around him, probably terrified that he would run off onto the tracks. one teacher climbed over, lifted him and handed him to me. i got him to walk and get to the car.

he had a tantrum the whole way home, which i ignored. he got home, cooled off, explained to me what had set him off, decided on his own to clean his room as punishment, and told me what he can do next time to avoid this. (he voluntarily missed recess yesterday but then he says he needed to get his energy out, so he says he will make sure he goes out on every recess. small, i know, but the fact that he vocalized this to me is huge, IMO.)

he caused at least 5 people to have to stay late at school, plus the trouble with his brother on the bus, plus the safety issue, and kids on the bus were late getting home because the bus driver turned back to school to bring my other son there (thankfully). i missed a 5:00 appointment (less important, but just to add up all that his actions caused.)

then i get to latchkey this morning and the latchkey instructor says to me that he owes her an apology for flipping off all the latchkey kids yesterday during all of this. basically half of the school was involved. he was cracking up and smirking at everyone while running away from them. so i spent ten minutes with him explaining how and why he needs to apologize to mrs. latchkey teacher. he finally does, and does a good, sincere job.

he's in 3rd grade and is a GREAT student. luckily, everyone really likes him and knows that this is not his normal behavior. so they work with me and are worried about him. the new principal this year has offered to give him breaks through the day where the two of them can go shoot hoops, whatever. he's usually such a reasonable and likeable kid.

i'm just at my wits end. i was at school TWICE in the same day last thursday. i have sat in his class. i have had him practice what to say so he can remove himself and get some space and exercise. we had 9 months of weekly in home one on one behavior therapy last year. i keep a very strict schedule at home (bedtimes, etc.) and make sure he gets enough sleep and doesn't eat much crap. he drinks plenty of water. he does his chores. he has friends. he's not violent (yet), just angry.

and the sad thing is, i see improvement in him from even august. the episodes are shorter and he recovers faster.


do any of you have any suggestions? have you done anything with the school staff that helped? a certain kind of therapy? or at least...have you been through this??

thanks for reading all of this. i have two calls into two different therapy programs as we speak, but it's early and i'm waiting for them to call me back!

aniheartsjapan
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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:02:01 AM
I would take him to the doctor, ASAP.

Are these episodes more likely to happen in the afternoon? You said the last one occured at 3pm. I know with my DS (who has ADHD), around 3-4 pm he would start losing focus, become more hyperactive and I wasn't supposed to give him another dose of his medication until dinner time. His doctor has changed his prescription strength to a stronger one so that it lasts longer. All I can comment on is what I've had experience with.

I am so sorry you are going through this.

lovetodigi
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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:08:57 AM
It sounds like his behavior is becoming a safety issue and worsening. He definately needs to see a therapist. Perhaps his meds just need adjusted or maybe something else is going on.

he had a tantrum the whole way home, which i ignored. he got home, cooled off, explained to me what had set him off, decided on his own to clean his room as punishment, and told me what he can do next time to avoid this. (he voluntarily missed recess yesterday but then he says he needed to get his energy out, so he says he will make sure he goes out on every recess. small, i know, but the fact that he vocalized this to me is huge, IMO.)
Could this be his way of playing you to get less punishment for his behavior. If you are like me, you don't want to have to punish one of your children and if they do something to indicate that they are sorry for what they did, your heart wants to believe them. Speaking from experience, kids know this and use it against Mom. They are smart that way.

Right now it is early in the school year and it is easier for school personnel and you to be more patient with him. I suspect that your patience with him is beginning to wear thin as each episode occurs. The people at the school will most likely be feeling the same way. When he does things like climbing the fence near a train track, he not only puts himself in danger, but he takes the attention of those trying to keep up with him, away from other students. I hope that you can find answers soon.

One question. Are you certain that he is taking his meds? Our youngest, who had ADHD, seemed to be getting worse at home and school. We discovered that he had been hiding his meds and pretending that he took them as we gave them to him. I had just been handing them to him and not actually watching him swallow them. The little stinker said that he didn't like taking them. We had a talk with him, explained the importance and then for a long time, watched him swallow his pill.

(((HUG))). I know how frustrating this can be.




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PEAce sign
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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:16:07 AM
oh yes, the staff is definitely going to lose patience with him. i really felt it yesterday.

last week (or hte week before) i did find out that he had put his pill in his pocket. he thought we were running late in the morning and didn't want me 'mad at him' so he thought he'd take it at school. but by then, it had crumpled up and emptied in his pocket. i watch him swallow it now, and i try to tell him the importance of taking his pill.

the thing is about kids like this...you can't simply PUNISH them every minute of every day. we have a rule or two at home, a sticker chart, other things, and it usually works well for us.

i'm glad you guys answered...i didn't think anyone was going to!!!

SpongeMom
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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:28:54 AM

Does he have a MT or TSS at school? I don't know what services are like where you live, but in PA, when my DS was having difficulty functioning in the classroom, we talked about getting wraparound services in the form of a TSS to be with him at certain times of the day that were difficult for him. The school didn't want that, so they ended up giving him a support person who he can go to when he is overwhelmed or depressed or whatever. I worked with this person, who was very open and has a wonderful relationship with my son, to respond to him the way we respond at home, and it virtually eliminated any school behaviors. We moved to middle school (5th grade) this year and I was really worried, but we identified another great support person and it has been going well. He doesn't have her all the time, and but he is able to articulate to his main teachers when he needs her and then he goes off and gets her or they call her if he is unable to do that. It is all written into his IEP.

Maybe something like that would work?

Deb

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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:28:54 AM
(((HUGS))), it sounds like you are on top of it so that's good.

ITA about not taking his pills. ADHD runs in my dh's family though he was the first (and dd the second) to be diagnosed as they didn't do that when his mom and grandfather were children. Anyway dh used to pretend to take his pills all the time and he says most of the time he didn't. He was very sneaky. Thankfully dd didn't take after him but I still watch her put it in her mouth and swallow and then keep an eye on her for a few minutes after.

I wish I had more advice. DD is a pretty easy ADHD kid I guess and while when younger could be a problem behavior wise, it was all reserved for at home and much more minor than that. I would definitely contact the doctor about the timing of the meds etc.


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PierKiss
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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:40:42 AM
Do you have a psychiatrist that you are currently seeing who oversees his ADD meds? If yes, you need to schedule an appointment ASAP. I know it can take a while to get in there, but better to call and then wait a few weeks for your appointment then to put it off for a while you know. If no, get an appointment with his pediatrician. Maybe it's something as simple as his meds are wearing off before the end of the day and the dosage/type of pill needs to be changed.

I used to work with a lot of kids like this when I worked in the public schools. Find out if your school has or is contracted with a behavior analyst. If not, pea-mail me and I can walk you through the steps to finding one in your area off the Behavior Analyst Certification Board website (it can be a little bit confusing). This does not sound like a problem that a simple program a teacher has had success with in the past can fix. This sounds like something that needs serious intervention outside of the norm, and for that you need a behavior analyst.

Is there an EBD or EH classroom at your sons school or in your district? This might be more of an appropriate setting for him while you are trying to get his meds and behavior both under control. They are smaller classrooms, with intensive behavior support plans in place. The teachers in these classrooms are heavily trained and used to this sort of behavior. Placement in these classrooms can't be done after a simple meeting with the IEP team. The school has to try implementing a least restrictive behavior support plan (BSP) in his regular classroom first, and collect data showing that it is not effective before he can be moved to the EBD classroom. Which is why I recommended looking for a behavior analyst above.



PEAce sign
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Posted: 10/5/2012 9:44:32 AM
Since I posted this morning I got another call. He Had bitten someone and the (male) principal called for me to pick him up. He tried to climb out the principals window. Then he wouldn't leave and the principal had to carry him past his entire class to the car. I was going to take him to Ohio states emergency room where they can do a psych eval on him but the ped nurse said to wait for the ped to call me. She's off today but will call me this afternoon.

He's talk g to me now very calmly about how once he gets angry he can't make himself leave the situation to go to the principals office to be alone and calm down. He says he can't help it. He asked why he gets this angry. He is breaking my heart and my mother is worried sick.

I don't know what any of those initials any of you mentioned mean...so no, we don't have any of that in place.

He has no IEP. This just started in may and we switched to adderall xr. he's in the gifted program for reading and math. We will have to begin the IEP process.
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Posted: 10/5/2012 9:50:58 AM
I wish I had some advise but I'm just offering a HUG!

You sound like an AMAZING mother! Hang in there!



BudgetMama
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Posted: 10/5/2012 9:59:26 AM
Have you taken him to a child psychologist?

SpongeMom
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Posted: 10/5/2012 10:10:10 AM

It sounds like a psych eval would be a good place to start. One thing I will say about the meds is that my DS would get terribly irritable when the ADD meds would start to wear off. We tried Concerta and Adderall and ultimately he was most successful with Vyvanese, which is long-acting and does not wear off until he is in bed (though he has to take melatonin to fall asleep). Is he taking other meds for the ODD? Maybe he needs something, or that med needs to be adjusted.

I'm so sorry that he is struggling. I know how heart breaking it is when they are calm but so sad/upset/embarrassed for how they have behaved and they don't understand why they do such things or how to change it. It is good that he is able to articulate, though. My DS is also gifted and extremely articulate and that helps me to help him, but also helps me to feel less angry because I understand that he wants to manage his behaviors as much as I want him to.

I resisted the IEP for a long time, but after several years I realized that the school was already making all these accomodations as they figured out what worked, so we needed to write it up formally. A TSS is a Therapeutic Staff Support, and an MT is a Mobile Therapist, which is part of wraparound services in the state of PA. Sounds like you might not have that in Ohio. But I suspect you have some type of mobile therapy in the form of a therapist that would go with the child to school and be there just to help him function in a mainstream classroom. I don't know what that is called in OH. It sounds like the school is wanting to work with him though? Would they be willing to designate a person to go down to the classroom when he gets upset? Just be in close proximity to him, or remove him to somewhere quiet and private if necessary? Having one specific person would enable you to work with that person on how to respond to your son, and that person could build a relationship with your son so that he could have a safe, predictable person to process with during the school day when things go wrong.

In our elementary school it was the guidance counselor who took that role. She was not always there, but my son knew to leave her a note if he went down and she wasn't there, and if he could not go back to class he could go to the principal office and just hang out there and the principal or another teacher that was free would sit with him for a few mintues. If he was out of control in the classroom, which did not happen often, (but sometimes in clusters of several times in one week), the guidance counselor would come to the room and talk with him in the same way that I would, and help him process consistently so that he could calm down and go back to class. When he moved to middle school, it was the person who was in charge of the service plans who was particularly good with him. She had other kids that she managed/taught too, but she is almost always able to see him when he needs her to. The principal and the guidance counselors also developed a relationship with him so that they could be back up. It has worked great for us, but I realize you have to have a cooperative district to be able to do that. As I said before, we were willing to bring wraparound services into the school for him, but they preferred not to have that person in the school, so they were willing to accomodate us.

Sorry that things are not going well. I am off to write a paper for school and not sure when I will be back to peas, but feel free to p-mail me if I there is anything I can do. I can very much relate to your situation. I hope he feels better soon.

Deb



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Posted: 10/5/2012 10:11:33 AM
EBD = Emotional and Behavior Disorders. EH = Emotionally Handicapped. Kids with severe behavior problems fall under these categories. EH is what they used to call it in the school systems. They changed it to EBD a few years ago, but are essentially the same thing. Sorry that I didn't explain that in my other post.

I would see if his pediatrician can recommend a good psychiatrist. Also see if she knows of any behavior analysts in your area who can help.

Good luck with setting up your IEP and getting appropriate and effective strategies for your son! You sound like an amazing mom, so I have no doubt that you can do this!



SpongeMom
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Posted: 10/5/2012 10:16:43 AM

Also, does he have a therapist? I assumed that he had a psychiatrist since he has a diagnosis and medication, but I forget that sometimes a diagnosis is just a one time psych eval and the pcp manages the meds. If that is the case with your son, I would strongly suggest that you find him a psychiatrist to manage meds and a therapist to work with him weekly or bi-weekly on behavioral issues. For some reason, I think that you already have that in place, but if not, definitely consider it. Psychiatric meds and diagnoses can be very tricky, especially in children. You deserve to have an expert taking care of him. Alson, in my experience, a good therapist is the best support for you and him, as well as his little brother, who undoubtably will be effected by his behavior at times.

Deb

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Posted: 10/5/2012 10:38:35 AM
This sounds like a student in my class. All of the teachers in our room were trained in crisis management/restraint training this week, mainly to help us keep him safe. We have been hit, kicked, slapped, and bitten. He is violent 8 year old. He has been dx'd with ODD as well as a host of other things.

I would speak with his case manager and see if there is a behavior specialist/consultant that can observe your child in school. They need to determine the function of his behavior, and should be able to craft a plan to help him adjust to his school setting. We've been told that it will get worse before it gets better, and we are finding that to be true.

Are they using a reward program? Our guy earns 6 tickets and then gets a 3 minute timed break. He has learned to return to the activity when his timer goes off. This has been a work in progress--there is no quick fix.

((hugs))


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Posted: 10/5/2012 11:02:59 AM
I need to second Lisa in getting and reading the book "The Explosive Child." A total life saver in our home and school.

My DD used to be like that. Something would trigger her and she couldn't calm herself down. Moving in physically, demanding compliance, problem solving in the moment, telling her to stop, etc. just made the situation worse. It overwhelmed her to the max. My DD had the "flight" response. If you follow her, she would just try to move herself to calm down, but the act of you following her would make her move further and further away. Sounds like something you DS is doing.

Keep in mind that 3rd grade is much harder and it is a time when school issues really come to a head. I suggest that if you have not done so already, get a good neuro-psychological evaluation privately. It might cost you some $ (around $2000) if your insurance doesn't cover it. However, it was the best thing we ever did. No wonder my DD's medication wasn't working - she didn't even have ADD.

Next, suggest to the school that they have a "safe" place and a "safe" person. It can be as simple as a chair outside the room. Just someplace that is quiet that your DS can go to get control. Before he looses it. Instruct others and him that he goes there to calm down and to get control and that is the only place he is allowed to go. No one is to pressure him or interact with him while he is in his "safe" spot. It is after he is calm that you can problem solve and praise him for noticing he is getting out of control and going to his "safe" spot. It is a good idea to have the "safe" person do this step at first. The "safe" person is someone who relates well with your DS and who he can go to anytime he needs help. These steps may take some time for awhile and he may be late for some activities or transitioning to other subjects, but, it will lessen as he feels comfortable and can recognize his feelings. At first, the teacher also would give my DD a signal when she noticed that my DD needed to go to her "safe" place. Afterwards the teacher and my DD talked. Keep in mind, this is NOT time out or discipline, but, behavior management.

Another thing my DD's school did that was great is there is a track (yes, a track) in the middle of the campus. When students get overwhelmed (their beaker gets too full) and they need to "empty their beaker" they go out and walk around the track. I have seen every staff person from the janitor to the head of school out walking around the track with students. At first, they just walk with no talking. Eventually when the student was able, they talked and problem solved.

Sorry this is so long. I lost a job when my DD was in 5th grade because the school called me everyday to come and get her. I don't want to see this happen to someone else.

needmysanity
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Posted: 10/5/2012 11:03:47 AM

the thing is about kids like this...you can't simply PUNISH them every minute of every day.


That is where I get with my youngest sometimes. I haven't had to deal with things you are dealing with but it's close at times. I find myself putting ME in time out just to escape him because if I don't I will loose it.

I would take him back to the doctor and talk about the meds. Will you share what he is on? Maybe it's time for a change or up the dosage?

Your other son is relativly new to your family right? Has your 8 yr olds behavior gotten worse since he joined you? Just curious if there is something going on in his head that is making him upset or worried about the new dynamics.

Hugs to you and hang in there. I sucks when you feel like you are doing everything you can and it still isn't working.


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rosiekat
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Posted: 10/5/2012 2:16:53 PM
Just some hugs. I strongly suspect my 4 year old of having ADHD and perhaps ODD, and a lot of this sounds like things I could see him doing - if not now, perhaps later. The Explosive Child could help if you haven't read it, but unfortunately, it sure sounds like ODD is a problem with no "easy" solutions. Meanwhile, we're dealing with a lot of things with my older daughter, so I feel like they're both getting shortchanged.

Anyway, I have no wisdom, but lots of sympathy and empathy.


Jen


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Posted: 10/5/2012 3:28:26 PM
I spoke with the ped (love that she calls me personally on her day off!!) and she and I agree that his adderall 15xr is the proper dose. This isn't add, it's the odd now. We're going to talk to the psych about odd meds (risperol??) and have a team meeting at school to discuss action and intervention. I'm trying to find an aide who can help him identify when he is about to explode and remove himself. If there is such a thing. We're in a very big school district...
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Posted: 10/5/2012 4:36:48 PM
I'm sorry you're having to deal with this. It must be exhausting and frustrating


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Posted: 10/5/2012 4:49:32 PM
IMHO, your son is out of the range of expertise for a pediatrician and should be seeing a child/adolescent psychiatrist ASAP. He also needs at least weekly therapy (individual AND family), or perhaps PHP (partial hospital program -- here they are picked up at school, have 4 hours of treatment and supper, and are taken home. I'd suggest contacting your health insurance immediately to find out who in your area takes your coverage for a higher level of care. I'd also find out which psych hospitals in your area take kids under 10 and your insurance, just in case for future reference).

He's becoming a danger to self and others and if this continues to escalate, you (or the school) are going to get to the point of calling 911 to get him into a psych hospital. I don't say that lightly, or to be hurtful, but it sounds like things could be leading to that.

I also second (or third) the recommendation for a full psychological eval (done by a PhD psychologist) and an emergency request for testing and an IEP or 504 plan at school. But those things may take time to get started, so I'd work on them while finding resources for additional treatment via your insurance company.

Good luck to you and your sweet boy. It *does* get better, but it takes time and a lot of work. There is no "magic" pill in this situation, no matter how skilled the MD, you *MUST* also have therapy and training about behavior modification, emotion regulation, anger mgmt, social skills, etc.


...............................
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Posted: 10/5/2012 5:20:25 PM
I have calls in to our behavior therapist and psych, but she's off on Fridays. The ped was the only person I could get today. I will call my insurance co too.
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Posted: 10/5/2012 5:49:01 PM
I would be calling for an immediate IEP! He needs a behavioral plan in place. He needs to have a plan in place to where he can be removed from the classroom and sent out to run laps (that's what my son did when things got too overwhelming) but he needs an adult to be able to make those decisions for him, because once he starts to lose it, he isn't capable of making rational decisions for himself.

I also agree with the Pea who said this is out of the range of your average Pediatrician, you need to be taking him to a Psychiatrist specializing in ADD and ODD.

I also recommend reading the book 'The Explosive Child'.

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Posted: 10/5/2012 6:23:11 PM
He sounds just like my 5 yr old. We have been dealing with this for almost a yr. He was angry, throwing fits, hyper, and very defiant.

We started play therapy...it helped a little, but he still melted down.

Finally, after a 6 month wait we got an appt at a diagnostic testing center.

I knew he was ADHD, but also we were thinking ODD.

Turns out...it's anxiety AND ADHD. Dr wanted to start medicating the anxiety first and go from there.

He has been on meds for a month....TOTALLY DIFFERENT kid! He is happy, calm, and enjoyable. I could tell a change in him after the first dose.

A lot of my research has said that when some ADHD meds are given and anxiety is present, they will MAGNIFY the behaviors of ADHD kids.

PM if you have any questions. I am also a teacher with 15 years experience...part of the reason I knew so soon he needed help.

Hang in there...


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Posted: 10/5/2012 6:31:59 PM
Forgot to mention our DS is coded ED and does have an IEP and BIP in place. He also see a therapist once a week and a Special Ed counselor at school once a week.

All of these things have been a tremendous support for him. I love his "new" self.


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Posted: 10/5/2012 7:29:30 PM
Thank you everyone. He has been his normal self since we got home this morning, like able, helping with chores, reading a book.

I'm afraid if he gets the Bp, he'll have to go to another school. Which is a whole other set of problems. I doubt they have the capabilities of a Bp at his school but I could be wrong.
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Georgiapea
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Posted: 10/5/2012 7:49:00 PM
How difficult life seems to be for your boy. It's heartbreaking to read what he is going through. Does he feel he has enough warning that he is about to go 'down the chute' in time to remove HIMSELF from the class? Is he able to feel it coming on and WANT to escape? Or does it hit him so fast that being disruptive seems like what he WANTS to do? Please give him a hug from me. It seems like he really wants to do the right thing but is overcome with the desire to do the opposite.

hayjake
My kids have better lives than I do!

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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:00:35 PM


I have a book recommendation for you: The Explosive Child by Ross Greene. I'm not suggesting that your child is "explosive" but the book has a lot of info about how these kids are lacking basic skills such as frustration tolerance, flexibility, problem solving skills etc.




YES! Collaborative Problem Solving can absolutely be helpful. You have received a lot of excellent advise on this thread, but this book and this approach does work.


Tracy
Mom to Jacob (19yo), Hayley (17yo), and Ruby (11yo)


cycworker
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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:04:26 PM

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
IMHO, your son is out of the range of expertise for a pediatrician and should be seeing a child/adolescent psychiatrist ASAP. He also needs at least weekly therapy (individual AND family), or perhaps PHP (partial hospital program -- here they are picked up at school, have 4 hours of treatment and supper, and are taken home. I'd suggest contacting your health insurance immediately to find out who in your area takes your coverage for a higher level of care. I'd also find out which psych hospitals in your area take kids under 10 and your insurance, just in case for future reference).

He's becoming a danger to self and others and if this continues to escalate, you (or the school) are going to get to the point of calling 911 to get him into a psych hospital. I don't say that lightly, or to be hurtful, but it sounds like things could be leading to that.

I also second (or third) the recommendation for a full psychological eval (done by a PhD psychologist) and an emergency request for testing and an IEP or 504 plan at school. But those things may take time to get started, so I'd work on them while finding resources for additional treatment via your insurance company.

Good luck to you and your sweet boy. It *does* get better, but it takes time and a lot of work. There is no "magic" pill in this situation, no matter how skilled the MD, you *MUST* also have therapy and training about behavior modification, emotion regulation, anger mgmt, social skills, etc


This.

And I'm going to add something really controversial. Meds are not the answer. Meds just mask problems. The kid needs therapy to figure out why he's so angry and he needs to be allowed to deal with that anger.


-Tania... but people who like me call me `Tang`


The secret of a good life is to have the right loyalties and hold them in the right scale of values.
Norman Thomas
US socialist politician (1884 - 1968)

Human and civil rights should NEVER be subject to the tyranny of the majority. Minorities gain legal equality only when those in power come to understand that their unearned privilege is wrong, and enforce change upon society. - ProfessorZed

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Posted: 10/5/2012 8:12:34 PM
I dont really know if meds are the answer or not. They definitely are with his ADHD. But I also don't think there is a "cause" for his anger. It's impulsive and he's quite simply too young in most cases to stave off his anger impulses. I understand it can get better as they mature. Sometimes.

I could be wrong and certainly will be investigating every single avenue mentioned here. And I'll be pmailing some of you in the next week or so.

I'm all ears for any other ideas and experiences!!
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Kate-pea
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Posted: 10/5/2012 9:57:38 PM
My mother's heart is breaking for you and your ds. My teacher's heart is crying in frustration and fear.

I have been on both sides of this scene, and neither view is pretty. I'm so sorry for what you're going through. I wish I had a solution for you, but I really don't.

Here are some brainstorms:

Can he have a planned early dismissal time, at least until you have some other supports in place? If he routinely falls apart in the late afternoon, maybe you could just pick him up at 2:00 for a couple of weeks. Yes, he would miss some school time, but as it is, maybe he - not to mention all of his classmates - is not getting much out of he last hour of school, anyway.

My adhd kid reacted quite differently to different stimulant meds. Afternoon tantrums were Pretty mind-blowing on some of them.

As a teacher, I'm much more comfortable if there's a uniform plan of action for gross misbehavior at school. If I know a certain kid gets (for example) 1 reminder, 1 warning, then a specific consequence (or series of consequences), I am much calmer when that child is in class. The worst situation is feeling on pins and needles every time an explosive child's class comes through the door.

Artbabe
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Posted: 10/5/2012 10:39:09 PM

And I'm going to add something really controversial. Meds are not the answer. Meds just mask problems.


What a load of bull crap. Aspirin masks the problem of a headache. So we shouldn't take aspirin?

As someone who takes meds for ADD and Bipolar I just get so irritated with this attitude. Therapy is always a good thing. But chemical balances are a real, physical problem. And the meds that "mask" my problems have changed my life from horrifying to great. No amount of behavioral therapy is going to totally cure my ADD. I used to have rages. No amount of therapy helped and I tried a lot. Took the meds and 90% of my rage was gone.

Stuff like this really pisses me off.

And on topic: I think most of the people here have given you great advice. At my school we have two ED (Emotional Disorder)units. The kids are mainstreamed into as many classes as they can handle but there is a support system of teachers and aides that have experience dealing with emotional issues and helping these kids be successful.


Tracy

I put my heart and soul into my work, & have lost my mind in the process. Vincent van Gogh

trixiecat1
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Posted: 10/6/2012 7:14:45 AM
You said this started in May and you switched to Adderall then. Have you seen improvements or has it gotten worse since then. I know Adderall can do some weird things to children/adults. Has anything triggered this to start in May? Home is his safe and secure place, hence no outside stimulation like school to trigger these episodes. I agree with the peas who recommended a total neuro evaluation. Wasn't there another pea who was having issues with her son and he had to be admitted for weeks at a time at the hospital for his uncontrollable behavior? I think she said he was doing better. Maybe she could offer some advice.

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Posted: 10/6/2012 7:33:09 AM
He was switched to the long acting adder all from two daily doses of regular adder all. Adder all is definitely right for him. The ADHD is under control for sure. This is the ODD that we need to solve somehow.

I was looking up risperdal and there are very harsh side effects. So scary. Not that it's a definite thing, just saying.
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KristinL16
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Posted: 10/6/2012 8:15:00 AM
Without knowing more about your situation, I would second the recommendation for a psych evaluation and assessment by a child psychiatrist. Is it possible there is an alternative diagnosis (RAD, etc) that could be coming into play?


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Posted: 10/6/2012 8:18:20 AM
No RAD. We see the therapist Tuesday where we will schedule with the psych. I will be bringing this thread and discussing all of these ideas!
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birukitty
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Posted: 10/6/2012 6:28:15 PM
"Meds are not the answer, meds just mask problems"...this is complete and utter horse shit. I'm right there with you Artbabe.

Would you say this to a diabetic who needed insulin?
Would you say this to someone who has an infection and needs antibiotics?

Why is it that as soon as an illness involves the brain (mental illness) so many folks just presume that therapy or prayer or both are all that is needed to fix the illness, and walk around advising people not to use medication?

Many mental conditions (ADHD, ADD, Major Depressive Disorder, Bipolar illness, Anxiety and so on) are caused by organic reasons-the chemical balances in the brain are not in balance. The only way to fix this is by medication. You can't pray it away and you can't fix it through therapy alone.

Please do some medical research before you go around giving this very harmful advice.

OP-I am so very sorry you are dealing with this and I really feel for your son. My own son has ADHD and anxiety so I can relate just a bit what you are going through. I do highly recommend that you take your son to a pediatric psychiatrist for a full evaluation and for this psychiatrist to oversee your son's medication-for that he/she will need to see your son periodically to adjust the medication as needed.

It's very tricky to get just the right dosage for children, then they grow and you have to keep adjusting it. A pediatrician just isn't the best doctor for this type of illness, you truly need a specialist for it.

I'm sending big hugs to you and your son and wishing the best for both of you. Hang in there, you are a fantastic mother!

Debbie in MD.

fwscrapper
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Posted: 10/6/2012 6:39:46 PM
I would be doing my son an injustice if we weren't medicating him. He was 4...angry, crying, throwing MAJOR fits, hugely impulsive, the list goes on.

In fact he WAS in therapy for to find out why he was feeling that way...for EIGHT months.

On meds he is finally able to process and apply his skills his therapist has been teaching him.

Mental illnesses runs in my family and ADHD runs in my husband's family.

It doesn't "mask" anything. It helps them be truly the people they were meant to be. And I for one am very thankful that at last my son is able to ENJOY life.

OP, I am so happy to see you so proactive in finding help for your son. As a teacher and parent of kids like him, it isn't easy, but something that he NEEDS in order to reach his full potential.

Hang in there!


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Judie in Oz
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Posted: 10/7/2012 2:43:17 AM
Did he have these symptoms on the twice-a-day Adderall? Maybe the slow release version doesn't agree with him. He may be getting more of a taper effect in the afternoon from it, whereas the taper from the twice-a-day dose wasn't as bad. Worth checking.

And for those who don't believe in meds for ADHD - I will lend you my son. He was diagnosed at 3. Trust me, he needed it. He's now 17 and still takes Concerta on school days. I hate to think where he'd be without it.

Judie

babybeansmom

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Posted: 10/7/2012 8:25:42 AM
I teach sped and have had a number of students over the years that have had major issues with adder adderall. Major behavior issues, rage, super defensive. I wonder if some of this couldn't be the meds. Once a few students went off of it those behaviors stopped. I would seriously look at it being meds because I've seen too many cases of it being the adderall over the years. Everyone responds to meds differently, but I've seen where adderall can be a huge issue. (Big hugs). I would also start the referral process so the help your child needs can be addressed in an IEP.

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Posted: 10/7/2012 8:40:35 AM
I will definitely be asking about an IEP, if appropriate.

I'm certain the adderall is not the culprit. It's the ODD.
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PierKiss
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Posted: 10/7/2012 8:49:48 AM
If your son has ODD, an IEP is absolutely warranted. Especially because they are going to have to do some kind of behavior support plan in whatever his school placement is (regular classroom, EBD classroom, etc.). You will want it in writing, in case the teacher or the school as a whole decides they are not going to do it. That's a big no-no, and the school will be held liable if it's not done.



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Posted: 10/9/2012 11:29:23 AM
bump for update.
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