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at my wit's end! - Page 2

post #21 of 62
I think it might be a good idea to call your dsc's mother on her bluff. Either she sends over the meds so your dss isn't all screwed up all weekend long, or he doesn't come over that weekend. Unless she has sole custody and your dh sees his children only at her whim, she actually doesn't have the power to make this decision alone. But he will need to step up.

No sane person WANTS to do battle with their ex. I can appreciate your dh's desire to avoid that. But maybe you can get it across to hm that not only are you, the other kids and the budget suffering from this every-weekend med withdrawal - his son is suffering too. He needs his dad to advocate for him.

I have no idea if meds are a good choice for your dss - but if he's taking them 5 days days/week regardless and that decision is out of your hands, in almost every case he is better off taking them 7 days/week.

I wouldn't let a teenager on the Ritalin Rebound (or whatever med he uses) stay in my house every weekend. It's obviously pushing you to the edge right now. If his mother is determined to give him two days off from the meds, then she can jolly well keep him and deal with the fallout. I'm not saying that that is a great long-term solution, but you do need to make it clear that you are not going to have HER make dosing decisions that are making things so bad for YOU.
post #22 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithie View Post
I think it might be a good idea to call your dsc's mother on her bluff. Either she sends over the meds so your dss isn't all screwed up all weekend long, or he doesn't come over that weekend. Unless she has sole custody and your dh sees his children only at her whim, she actually doesn't have the power to make this decision alone. But he will need to step up.

No sane person WANTS to do battle with their ex. I can appreciate your dh's desire to avoid that. But maybe you can get it across to hm that not only are you, the other kids and the budget suffering from this every-weekend med withdrawal - his son is suffering too. He needs his dad to advocate for him.

I have no idea if meds are a good choice for your dss - but if he's taking them 5 days days/week regardless and that decision is out of your hands, in almost every case he is better off taking them 7 days/week.

I wouldn't let a teenager on the Ritalin Rebound (or whatever med he uses) stay in my house every weekend. It's obviously pushing you to the edge right now. If his mother is determined to give him two days off from the meds, then she can jolly well keep him and deal with the fallout. I'm not saying that that is a great long-term solution, but you do need to make it clear that you are not going to have HER make dosing decisions that are making things so bad for YOU.
My impression was that it was dad and stepmom's choice not to give him the meds while at their house. It seemed like it was with the decision to give meds at all that the mom is saying there's no choice. Perhaps the OP could clarify? If the mom is actually withholding the meds, then that is a big deal that I'd go to court over. For that matter, if my ex was withholding meds while my daughter was with him we'd have big issues as well. There needs to be some kind of mediation to figure out whether to medicate, but once that decision is made it has to be consistent. Otherwise you're just really messing with a growing kid's chemistry.
post #23 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by plunky View Post
Not going to say much, but your rules seem very draconian to me. You have teenage kids in your house that want to eat and you are making that much more difficult than it should be. And I echo the previous posters who say: if there is a kid on medication when he's not in your house, he should also be on medication in your house. I'm kind of amazed that you're a 2K poster saying what you're saying in this thread.
I will have to agree that this is a little snarky.
post #24 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by maggiemae View Post
I will have to agree that this is a little snarky.
Not really. I don't agree with what the poster is doing, but my remark wasn't snide.
post #25 of 62
I guess that is why the written word can sometimes be interpreted so many ways without having the context of tone, facial expressions and gestures to help convey the message. I regress and apologize for my rush in judgement.
post #26 of 62
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bronxmom View Post
My impression was that it was dad and stepmom's choice not to give him the meds while at their house. It seemed like it was with the decision to give meds at all that the mom is saying there's no choice. Perhaps the OP could clarify? If the mom is actually withholding the meds, then that is a big deal that I'd go to court over. For that matter, if my ex was withholding meds while my daughter was with him we'd have big issues as well. There needs to be some kind of mediation to figure out whether to medicate, but once that decision is made it has to be consistent. Otherwise you're just really messing with a growing kid's chemistry.
absolutely not true. the meds are not sent over and dh was TOLD by the ex that she does not give him the meds on the weekends. i suspect that she gets X amount of meds for the month and uses the weekend amounts to 'boost' during the week.

i will never, ever refuse to medicate if that is the absolute best thing for MY kid. i do not and will not decide those things for dsc. not my place.

i REALLY appreciate the comments from ariche, oriole, greenemami, and smithie! you get it, you REALLY DO

dh and i have talked but we have not come to a consensus as of yet. left overs are usually reserved for dh's meals during the week at work, but i think we may work those in to the reg. meals. and dss IS given foods he likes at at least 2 of the 3 daily meals and IS offered healthy snacks. he refuses them and tries to sneak sweets or chips or the like. i don't keep much of that stuff around, so it's obvious when it gets eaten.

this is about SO much more and i AM using gentle parenting with dh's and my own and our children. whew. however, BEING gentle doesn't mean that i don't sometimes want to just scream and hoist the meal (and possibly the kid) out the door and just not have to try and be the even minded grown up that i am! i LOVE these kids, no question, or the whole thing would probably be a non-issue as in eat what you like, i don't care. i think meal times are family times and good opportunities to teach parenting to our kids so that good choices get made here AND outside the home.
post #27 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithie View Post
I think it might be a good idea to call your dsc's mother on her bluff. Either she sends over the meds so your dss isn't all screwed up all weekend long, or he doesn't come over that weekend. Unless she has sole custody and your dh sees his children only at her whim, she actually doesn't have the power to make this decision alone. But he will need to step up.

No sane person WANTS to do battle with their ex. I can appreciate your dh's desire to avoid that. But maybe you can get it across to hm that not only are you, the other kids and the budget suffering from this every-weekend med withdrawal - his son is suffering too. He needs his dad to advocate for him.
This.

Not to stir the pot any more, but is she giving the extra pills to your DSS during the week, or is she doing something else with them (taking them herself, selling them)? If she is giving them to your DSS in a way in which they are not being prescribed, the prescribing physician should really know this. What if she inadvertently overdoses him? Amphetamines are nothing to play around with.
post #28 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by boobs4milk View Post

i REALLY appreciate the comments from ariche, oriole, greenemami, and smithie! you get it, you REALLY DO
And not to stir it even more, but I also think it is good to hear from people that don't agree with you. I think that this is what this board is for- to sometimes check yourself to see if you are being rational sometimes. Sometimes a different perspective is refreshing (as long as it is said in a kind manner).
post #29 of 62
just a quick reminder to please keep the UA in mind when posting:

Quote:
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thanks
post #30 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by mandib50 View Post
just a quick reminder to please keep the UA in mind when posting:



thanks
What is UA?
post #31 of 62
User Agreement
post #32 of 62
"i suspect that she gets X amount of meds for the month and uses the weekend amounts to 'boost' during the week."


... and then dumps him on your doorstep in in withdrawal? Niiiiiiiiiice.


Your dh is going to have to fight on this one, if you truly believe that this is what is going on. In addition to sabotaging his time with his dad, your dss may be in actual physical danger, depending on the med and the dosage.
post #33 of 62
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smithie View Post
"i suspect that she gets X amount of meds for the month and uses the weekend amounts to 'boost' during the week."


... and then dumps him on your doorstep in in withdrawal? Niiiiiiiiiice.


Your dh is going to have to fight on this one, if you truly believe that this is what is going on. In addition to sabotaging his time with his dad, your dss may be in actual physical danger, depending on the med and the dosage.
i agree 100% smithie. dh, however is not willing to confront the ex over this. i know dss can not help some of the behaviors simply because he's going through meds withdrawal. i do not believe that excuses dh from appropriate parenting.

i really do appreciate the help and even some of the disagreement. if you feel what i'm doing is wrong, it's nice to see the reasoning, too. i just don't feel it's helpful to tell me how mean and cruel and un-AP i'm being especially if you aren't going to help me with alternatives. i truly believe that family meal times are perfect times to teach children how to nourish themselves properly and learn about food prep, budgets, togetherness and making good choices. i want to do so in a gentle way without anyone getting slighted or feeling like there is preferential treatment that has nothing to do with a proven medical condition (ie allergies, intollerances).

oriole: i could actually see your point if dss wasn't given the option of nutritious snacks (even without eating his other foods). he was given an orange last saturday and he mutilated it and threw it away. when i asked him about it, he lied. he then complained to dh about being hungry and he came in here and tried to sneak other things.
post #34 of 62
I don't know which type of ADHD medication your DSS is taking but I think for most ADHD medication there are no withdrawl symptoms when they are not taken. Most people who take the medication properly will take it in the morning so they can focus while they are in school and doing homework and it will mostly wear off by the end of the day so they are able to sleep regularly. It is not something that they need to take everyday if there is not school work focusing type of work they need to do. Good Luck
post #35 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by boobs4milk View Post

i really do appreciate the help and even some of the disagreement. if you feel what i'm doing is wrong, it's nice to see the reasoning, too. i just don't feel it's helpful to tell me how mean and cruel and un-AP i'm being especially if you aren't going to help me with alternatives. i truly believe that family meal times are perfect times to teach children how to nourish themselves properly and learn about food prep, budgets, togetherness and making good choices. i want to do so in a gentle way without anyone getting slighted or feeling like there is preferential treatment that has nothing to do with a proven medical condition (ie allergies, intollerances).
I suppose you're talking about my criticism. I didn't go into more detail because your situation made me pretty angry for your DSS and I try to avoid getting into arguments on MDC. That's where I fall in this forum: I'm a stepson, not a stepmother. So I empathize with him, not you.

I did tell you how I think you need to solve this problem. You need to feed him. And not with an overly restrictive rule set that prevents his father from giving him milk and other cheap simple foods like peanut butter or cheese sandwiches. You've said that you don't have enough money to feed your seven children, or you barely do. But you also don't want to be on public aid. I would say if this kid can't make himself a cheese sandwich when he's hungry, you should be trying to get more cheese and bread by any way you can, even if that means getting help from WIC or whatever.

I fundamentally disagree with you as a noncustodial step-parent having such a direct role in teaching this kid how to eat. He learns that stuff with his custodial parent. It's unfortunate that you don't agree with what he learns there, but it doesn't absolve you of having to feed him. If I was his custodial parent, I would be trying to get him away from your house. What are you going to do when he turns 13 and starts having ridiculous growth spurts?
post #36 of 62
I don't know, but the meal plan you listed doesn't sound entirely healthy at all to me. where is teh fruit and veggies?

I also agree that if you have a kid who is very picky eater, and low weight/height, you NEED to accommodate more so that the kid who DOES eat anything set in front of them. I agree that you need to get the kids involved in making menus from 'approved' foods. Also, if you are doing canned soup and sandwiches for dinner, I REALLY don't get what the issue over two different cans of soup or two different types of sandwiches.

I don't think food is EVER a good thing to power trip kids over- this is where eating disorders come in.
post #37 of 62
I don't know the science of the meds, but if they are prescribed for daily use then they should be sent over. Can your dh set up an appointment with dss's doctor to discuss this with him/her? Then he could decide next steps but I think you should at least be in a discussion with the dr.

I'm sticking to my point that food struggles are not ones you want to pick. I think it's a mistake and sets you on a collision course. I'd let him make pb&j sandwiches if he's hungry and leave it at that. I particularly think this is true because your husband clearly does not agree with the rules that you thought he agreed with. This means that you need to sit down together and come up with new rules. The fact that you are fighting over these issues 6 or 7 years into your family indicates that counseling would be really important. My partner and I started counseling and it makes a huge difference. I'd really try to argue for it. I'd really avoid framing it as your husband needing counseling and talking about your needs as a family.
post #38 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by plunky View Post
I fundamentally disagree with you as a noncustodial step-parent having such a direct role in teaching this kid how to eat. He learns that stuff with his custodial parent. It's unfortunate that you don't agree with what he learns there, but it doesn't absolve you of having to feed him. If I was his custodial parent, I would be trying to get him away from your house. What are you going to do when he turns 13 and starts having ridiculous growth spurts?
Wow, really? My dp is on board with the way I feed dsd, but it is very different than the way her mom feeds her. It sounds like you are saying that I should basically feed her whatever her mom does and not even attempt to explain to her why I make food the way I do (i.e. healthy, balanced meals for the most part). I am honestly a little bit flabbergasted by this point of view-are you referring just to the fact that she is the NCP stepparent or NCPs in general having a say in teaching the child how to eat (or learn about many other things, for that matter)?
post #39 of 62
"dh, however is not willing to confront the ex over this."

I'm very sorry to hear that. In your shoes, I think I'd decline to be part of the dysfunction here. I wouldn't host this kid in my house - NOT because I didn't care about him and want him to be well, but because what's being done to him is morally unacceptable, and by having him over every weekend to sweat out his withdrawal, you are condoning and enabling what his mom is doing and his dad is allowing to be done. Emphasis on the enabling. If she knew he wasn't coming to your house this weekend, do you think she'd follow the prescription and spread out the meds over 7 days?

Make some room in the budget for your dh to spend time doing fun stuff with his son during the day on the weekends. Make it clear, to both your dh and his ex, that as soon as doctor's orders are being followed WRT the meds, you are thrilled and delighted to have your dss live with you every weekend. If there is confusion about what the doctor's orders are, have your dh take his son to the doctor and get clear on this issue. (And get a prescription for you to fill.)

To the poster who said that ADHD meds don't cause withdrawal: I'm sure it's different for every individual, but I have seen my kid on the Ritalin Rebound and it is an ugly, ugly thing. We have modified out lives and schooling so that he only takes meds a few times per month, because the other choice is medication 7 days/week, because the the Ritalin Rebound is NOT a choice that is acceptable to anybody in this house including my son. It's hellish. I know exactly what the OP is saying when she talks about a street drug user in withdrawal. If you haven't seen a child go through it, it might be hard to believe it can be so bad. The idea of deliberately inducing that state in a child and sending them off to their NCP's house - it's appalling.

OP, your real problem here isn't food or the budget or even fairness. It's a dh who is failing to parent his children from his first marriage adequately. I am sorry about that, but I don't know what you can do other than refusing to let this mess over your threshold. You need to make him hear you - not about the food or the budget, but about the fact that his child needs a father whose first priority is to keep him safe and healthy and offer him a second home where he is treated like he truly belongs.
post #40 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommy2maya View Post
Also, if you are doing canned soup and sandwiches for dinner, I REALLY don't get what the issue over two different cans of soup or two different types of sandwiches.
I assume (correct me if I'm wrong, OP) that she probably sees it as a "slippery slope." What starts as two cans of soup slowly becomes individual meals for every single person. If you have a family of 3 or 4, that seems like less of an issue, but when you are trying to accommodate family meals for a large family, the idea of separate meals for each person is sort of terrifying from a logistical perspective.

There's also something else that was mentioned earlier in the stream of posts that some days her step-son will sometimes refuse a food one day and eat it another. I was thinking of that just last night, as my son who usually won't touch the veggie burger on his plate ate the whole thing. He was hungry and we didn't offer cottage cheese on the side last night (not to be mean, we were just out of it). He didn't ask for something else, but did ask for more bread when he finished. Next week he may or may not eat it, or might eat 1/2 of it, might just eat the bread, or might eat it all but the bread and burger separately. When that's the kind of "picky eating" your dealing with, it can be really hard to figure out how to strike the balance between teaching good eating habits and figuring out what in the world the child will or won't eat this particular day.
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