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Parents of children with ADD/ADHD/ODD



 
 
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JDHAPPY
Posts: 69
2/3/12 6:59 A

I'm 58 with 2 grown daughters. When I was raising my children, ADHD had not been invented as a disorder yet or it was very new in it's diagnoses. I say that only because my second daughter was truly a challenge. She was strong willed, bossy, threw temper tantrums, etc. She was smart, but when little and in pre-school, she was much more interested in playing in the bathroom at the sink with water in the sink, than sitting in a structured environment. I worried, yes, because my other daughter had a much different personality. If I were young today and having these same 2 children, my younger one would have been drugged, but back then, they didn't do that as a first line of defense if at all. Today she is 30, married, successful, has tons of friends, is confident and happy. As happy as any of us are in this world. We laugh about the things she used to do and one day she will have challenging little children to deal with. She has actually thanked me for not giving her the drugs. She has several friends who are a few years younger who took them, and now as adults, can't get off of them without terrible withdrawal and trouble. I was a rambunctious trouble making child myself when I was young ..... very high spirited. She took after me, but we have both grown to be great adults. I make no judgements about these drugs, we all have to do what we feel is right for our children. Sometimes I just feel like society is trying to label kids as troubled and then convince us they have some awful thing wrong with them, when maybe a lot of them don't. My best friends daughter was so shy as a child, she would just sit by her mom and not join a group. My friend and I used to talk about that all the time when we were young and raising our kids and my friend was worried as well. Her daughter is also fine today, beautiful, married with kids of her own. It's just different today I guess with all the drugs and labels out there. Good luck to you all and hoping you all find peace and wellness in raising your kids. It's a challenge, that's for sure!



ACACIA13
Posts: 25
2/1/12 7:09 P

I'm the mother of three boys, 22, 16 and 15. I have a 19 yr old step son and a 26 year old nephew who lives with us. My youngest son has not been diagnosed with anything yet but not for lack of trying. I cannot get him to go to an appointment or talk to a single soul. He's ALWAYS angry. He has daggers in his eyes every time I try to talk to him- even something as simple as asking him how his day is! He does everything within his power to avoid everyone in this family. It's like he's ashamed to be a part of this family. He spends every free moment at his friends house where, apparently, he's a great kid to everyone he interacts with.
This behavior has always been there but it's never been this bad. His grandmother died this past August, his brother (whom he IDOLIZES) is in the army and left in October and his father started a new job in November that has him away from all of us for 14 hours a day. I don't know if these things are the cause of his anger and hatred or if they just triggered something inside that was slowly going to come out anyway. He won't eat with us, he won't talk to anyone, he never smiles anymore, his grades have slipped to failure and the look in his eyes when I try to talk to him leaves me in tears. We used to be such a close knit family and I don't know what to do. I've lost my family and now I loose sleep over it.

My middle son has ADHD and is doing very well in therapy and on Medadate. They are testing him for aspergers syndrome because he has fewer & fewer symptoms of ADHD every day. He's a really sweet kid with a constant smile and a loving heart. Once you get to know him you can see that he's a love. My youngest son is NASTY to him as well. He teases him in school and calls him retarded. They used to be BEST friends (they're 9 months apart). They shared everything- they acted just like twins. Now i can't even get him to speak decently to his brother. It falls on his older brother to "brush it off and don't let it bother you". Thats not fair...
I called my youngest sons therapists office and asked for someone to see my youngest son but I can't tell him. I was going to tell him it's a new doctor's office (since we just got new insurance this month) but the words "Behavioral Health" are written on the front door so I'm hoping I can get him through the door before he reads it otherwise I'm not sure what he'll do. He could turn and run off, he could yell & cause a scene or who knows. And I guess I resent the fact that whatever I do, I have to do it alone because my husband's not home during the week.

It doesn't help that my youngest looks IDENTICAL to his older brother. I miss my son immensely and I worry about him and where he's deployed to almost every day. We have always been very close and now it's like looking into his face with nothing but anger, hatred and resentment looking back at me. He looks just like him but he acts NOTHING like him.

I know none of you can help me but talking about it and knowing there's someone out there with similar situations makes it.... easier to accept.
Thanks for listening.



LISADAWN1312
Posts: 288
1/26/12 12:39 P

Here is his website http://www.livesinthebalance.org/ for those who are interested...It covers a lot like the book. I have found it has made a huge difference in our family.



CAPPYKIM
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Posts: 195
1/25/12 7:37 A

One good thing about my difficulties with my son is that I think it has removed nearly all of the judgements I make about anyone's parenting. None of us are perfect and, we all know, a child acting out isn't necessarily a sign of "bad parenting". Anytime my son has acted out and I see someone look or whisper I ignore it but so often I want to ask "Do you have a problem?". I don't though because it doesn't matter to me what they think..all that matters is I know I'm doing the best I can.

I bought The Explosive Child book years ago but have still not finished reading it. Just by reading there were/are parents out there who go through the same things my husband and I do made me feel better and changed my approach with my son.



LISADAWN1312
Posts: 288
1/24/12 2:52 P

I think it so very sad that everyone looks to the parents as we have clearly done something wrong...The people who would NEVER let their child act like THAT...No one is wrong here...just different. I have found the more I lay down the law, the harder it is . There are somethings that have to be...Going to school, going to church, doing home work etc, but I have to say The Explosive Child by Ross Greene has done wonders for us. Both boys are still on medication, and will continue to be until they do not need it anymore, but it has to be a whole approach. My theory isn't that they are bad kids, I just need to learn how to parent them while they learn how to handle their ADD and ODD. They are such strong, wonderful, bright boys. I never want to destroy the spirit that is in them!



CAPPYKIM
SparkPoints: (11,413)
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1/24/12 1:26 P

I was nearly hospitalized while pregnant with my youngest due to stress from my ADHD/ODD child. Many times I would completely break down and it has been a struggle but, at least for us, the older my son has gotten the better things have gotten. Sure there's rough patches but it's nowhere near like it was. I did blame myself, thinking I wasn't providing enough discipline or was somehow cursed but instead I was blessed with a special child who just needs a little bit of extra understanding.



KERRYMITCHELL28
Posts: 3
1/24/12 1:35 A

First don't ever blame your self for it. I have a son who has ADHD he was diagnosed at the age of 4. I did put him on medication as School needed to be a priority. I had a really great doctor who was also very supportive. So many people don't know what ADHD is. I went to my local library and read up as much as I could on it. MY CHILD HAD A DISABILITY? HUH WHAT? I did not know what to think. I was not accepting that because I was a 'TEEN' parent, it was the way he was. So many people will give you so much grief for medicating your child and say it is just bad parenting. ( But truth be told it is a legit medical condition that he collected SSI Disability on, until I was able to get on my feet and take care of him 100%)/ My husband was that person. Did not believe in such a thing. It was just a way to take care of bad parenting until he moved in and actually lived with my son. It did not matter to him and some other people along my journey with my child that it was considered a brain damage. It was a night and day when he was taking his medication. I never made him feel bad for taking it either. My son has adhd, he is not adhd I always make that statement very clear when I speak of his disability as well and it helped him to be okay with taking his meds and was on honor roll and did very well with school. Socially he was always behind with his friends because he was still very immature, and the impulsiveness was there to but so much more thought out. Before that it was such a boomerang effect for him. But I do have to say he is now 20 years old and doing very well. He has a girlfriend he loves and treats her like a queen. But I tell ya there were days and people who refused to watch THAT KID. and days I would lay in bed crying myself to sleep wondering why????? WHY US????



HLANIER4
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Posts: 177
1/23/12 7:27 P

It is good to hear someone talk about the positive aspects of having a child with ADHD, as well as having a husband with it. I hope we eventually make it to the light at the end of our tunnel.



SUSANSCHLOSSBER
Posts: 134
1/23/12 11:11 A

My son (and husband!) has ADHD. I tried behavior modification as well until he was in 2nd grade. I also was a teacher. For me, I just gave him lots and lots and lots of love and patience (the latter I'm not so good at) and he is now 18. While he is somewhat struggling in his first year of college, he is a very sweet, smart young man. He takes his medication when he goes to class and while it isn't the "end all-be all", he does the best that he can and is a productive member of society. That's all we can ask for. Best of luck to you.



HLANIER4
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1/22/12 10:06 A

Hi, I have a son with ADHD (and at a younger age the psychiatrist said ODD as well). My son is 11 now, but we have been battling with behavioral issues since he was 4 years-old. We chose to pursue behavioral modifications until he was in 2nd grade. Since then, we have been giving him ADHD medications, but it still did not help with all of his problems. I always get these looks from people that I must be this horrible parent, but the ironical part was that I used to be a teacher. I have realized that I have to just stare past people with "perfect children" and realize that we just have to work harder in our home. Although, last year my son's issues were so bad, even with medication, an IEP, and seeing a psychologist weekly, that we made a tough decision and sent our son to a military camp for the summer. It was the best decision we made in our life for our son. The camp specifically focused on children with behavioral issues, especially with children with ADHD. As the Colonel discussed his experiences with his own children with ADHD and how it lead to his founding the school and camp I began to tear up with finally knowing others had the same issues as our family. The camp changed our son's life and he actually seems a lot happier to go to school and interact with others. We still get the occasional phone calls, but the progress our son has made is amazing.
I still get the looks, but now I realize I am not alone and I am not a bad parent. I work as a school social worker now, which means I am able to tell other parents they are not alone and to keep working to help their children.
I always tell my son that ADHD is not an excuse, but just a reason just to work harder, I keep reminding him that other children may have it easier with behaving and listening, but he is still one of the brightest children in his school. And yes, he is still taking his ADHD medication.



MELODIEVP
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1/20/12 6:55 P

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CAPPYKIM
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1/15/12 9:28 A

When my son first started taking ritalin he wasn't big on swallowing pills so the doctor suggested getting a spoonful of apple sauce, opening the pill (his are capsules), and sprinkling the medication on top. We had no issues with him taking his meds then and he eventually didn't need to take the meds that way.

Edited by: CAPPYKIM at: 1/15/2012 (09:29)


BARBLIVESHERE
Posts: 235
1/14/12 6:19 P

My 6.5 year old daughter has ADHD/ODD. It was a nightmare before we got a diagnosis but once we got it, we understood her so much better, and she did a bit better too, since we were able to adjust expectations and the way we did things for her. I was very against starting such a little person on medication and tried everything....diet changes, crazy amounts of exercise, just adjusting our home environment to be more structured. But none of that helped enough. I wound up eventually getting a consult with a child psychiatrist who explained, very kindly, that it was really great that i was trying everything, and that behaviour modification can be very successful for kids like my little girl....but they can't learn anything from behaviour modification programs until their minds stop wandering and can pay attention to it. She pointed out that if my daughter had any other medical condition requiring presciption drugs, I would give them to her. She suggested I just try something for a short amount of time and if I didn't like it, I could stop it.
The Biphentin we eventually put her on has changed all of our lives for the better. She does much better in school, has many more friends, and there is a lot less yelling in our house.
My husband and i did wind up taking a parenting class just this past fall though, because I felt our relationship with her was damaged from the constant fighting. I have found the class, based on a solid foundation of play and praise, has been incredibly helpful



DROPADRESSSIZE1
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1/4/12 8:03 P

My oldest son was diagnosed with ADHD in first grade. the doctor suggesed meds (not sure what they were now) and he refused to take them because they were in pill form. By third grade and fighting him everyday to take them, he really seemed to have outgrown the symptoms. My youngest son who is currenly in 3rd grade was also diagnosed in 1st grade, is currently taking Ritalin (not my first choice for a med) and seems to be doing really well with it. His teacher has commented that she knows right away if I forget to give it to him in the morning. He does seem to be doing better on the meds. I was against Ritalin for several reasons but it's a tiny little dose and does help.



BJALEX5
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1/3/12 11:04 P

My son started having random tantrums and meltdowns when he was 5. These would come on for no reason. The rest of the time he was a brilliant perfectly behaved child. We noticed a pattern of inflexibility and a difficult time with transitions from one activity to another. We went to a psychologist that helped him with anger management. After several months it became apparent that we needed more. The next step was a psychiatrist that diagnosed OCD and Anxiety. I was actually relieved because I now knew why my perfect boy was broken. Now we needed to find the best way to help him. He started meds. in first grade which was a hard decision but the best thing we could have done for him. We had our ups and downs, life was never easy for our family. I was always proactive, planning ahead, heading off any triggers. I never felt so alone. None of my friends knew what our family was dealing with. My son's issues never interfered with school, actually he was always a straight A student. His teachers thought I was crazy. He kept his fears and worries under wraps until he came home and let it all go on mom. UGH! So I ate , gained tons of weight and have been battling that for years. Our motto in our house is "BELIEVE". Believe that god is there. Believe that you are not alone.And I continued to reinforce to my son to BELIEVE in himself. He went through Cognitive Behavorial Therapy three times. It is a form of exposure therapy. Well that boy is in High School, an Honor student, no signs of anxiety and his OCD is in check. We started taking him off meds. this past year. I never thought I would get here. Some days were so dark and lonely. But with faith and love we made it. Hang in there, Make time for yourself, and ask for help, don't make my mistakes. If you wanna talk or have questions feel free to ask.



CAPPYKIM
SparkPoints: (11,413)
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Posts: 195
1/2/12 11:35 A

My 9 year old was diagnosed with ADHD and ODD at the age of 4. We tried a non-medication route at first with him seeing a psychologist once a week and being allowed to bring special items from home to help him when he was having diffculties but these things alone did not work. When my husband left on a 6 month deployment and my son was suspended from school for the last two days I knew something had to give. He's been on medication ever since and it has done wonders. Today he's a straight A student with several close friends and with the help of his medication and outside help (he still sees a psychologist from time to time and is on an IEP through school) things are much better. Like a previous poster said structure is key-on school nights we have dinner around the same time, bedtime is enforced, and we are up the same time everyday. Weekends are somewhat lax and we do not medicate him then (unless we have somewhere to be) so that he learns to fully manage himself. Different approaches work for everyone so the best advice I can say is to find one that works for all of you and stick with it, making adjustments as needed.



KCDELENN
Posts: 86
12/18/11 10:00 P

I have 4 kids, 2 have ADHD, 1 has schizoaffective disorder. It is VERY difficult. For the ADHD kids, they are both on medication. One has benefited from therapy, the other did not. The biggest help we have found is that our lives are very VERY structured. My kids get up at the same time every day, eat at the same time, go to bed at the same time, etc... that is very helpful for my kids. right now they are 21 (the schizoaffective) 15 (ADHD), 14 ("normal"), 11 (ADHD, OCD). Both of my ADHD kids were diagnosed and began medication in 1st grade (7 years old). The medication helps a LOT. We have also used some behavioral modification techniques. I have a white board in the kitchen where I list the things I expect them to accomplish after school (ADHD kids do NOT do well with multiple task expectations.)

The most valuable advice I received was from their pediatrician. He told me that kids with ADHD are generally about 1.5 years less mature than their peers. So when I get frustrated with how my kids are behaving, I subract 1.5 years from my expectations. (i.e. My 11 year olds behavior is quite normal for a 9.5 year old.) Sometimes just adjusting expectations is the key.

For those just starting down this road, learn everything you can about the disorder! THat knowledge will help tremendously.



LISADAWN1312
Posts: 288
12/14/11 12:02 P

I just remember feeling so alone and like I was doing everything wrong. the other side of it (before the diagnosis) was, why is he doing this to me. Now, we both understand it is not something he chooses and we are dealing. It is difficult, but we are doing all we can. It is tough because they are such wonderful., loving boys and it harder on them than it is on us.



TINA2OLD
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Posts: 202
12/14/11 11:21 A

I have 4 chilrden and my son was diagnosed at the age of 10 with ADHD inatentive type. It has been a struggle since then. I had him on stratera that turned my child into a monster and he hated every body! Took him off that went to concerta that went well for a year and we went off for the summer and had horrible withdrawls that scared both of us that he didn't want to go back on. So our next step was ritilin patches (sorry if I am spelling these wrong) he only used them for about 5 months and we decided they were not heping enough to make it worth putting that in his body. Then we went on herbs, we had great results with mental edge and fish oil and with every growth spurt or hormone change we have had issues. Now he still takes the herbs but we have a heck of a time regulating how much he needs so really he is not under control now and has gotten himself into some trouble with the law and I am beginning to wonder if we should try and go back on man made meds which we are both totally against! It is a non stop battle and I really feel for the kid, now he is 17 and struggling to make the right decisions and he is actually a Really good loving child! I wish you all luck, just remember when your at your most stressed from dealing with their issues to take a deep breath and remember they are feeling worse than you are! I would love to hear any feedback with other natural ways of dealing with ADHD, thanks for starting such a Great topic!



LISADAWN1312
Posts: 288
12/12/11 9:31 A

My boys are also on meds, but I don't want that to be forever, if we can help it. They are making improvements on the meds, but the CPS (Collaborative Problem Solving) also works. I also pray....A LOT ! emoticon



CURVESDIVA2000
Posts: 142
12/12/11 9:16 A

i am a mom of 3. my oldest child (girl age 5) has adhd and odd. it comes from my mom who also has adhd/ocd/type a. my child takes night and day meds and they help tons. before she was on meds our life was hell for almost 5 yrs. my other 2 children are normal. thank god.



LISADAWN1312
Posts: 288
12/9/11 10:49 A

I have heard about the Total Transformation...what does it involve? How does it suggest yo interact with the children?



SANDYLM
Posts: 2
12/9/11 6:42 A

I have a 6 year old with ADHD and ODD. And my 3.5 year old has autism. I would love to chat with you. I have used the Total Transformation Program to some degree of success. I also do biomedical which is vitamin therapy. I have found that magnesium and tryptophan really help to calm him down.



LISADAWN1312
Posts: 288
12/2/11 4:11 P

I am mom with four boys, ages 18, 10 and 7 year old twins. My 10 year old and one of my twins were diagnosed with ADD and my 10 year old also has ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder). Anyone else out there with these kinds of special challenges in your lives? How do you deal with it? We have tried almost everything and are now using Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) with some small success. Anyone want to have a discussion?



 
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