So, we had some little ones move in about a month ago from another foster home. For unknown reasons, that home gave 24 hours notice to replace them, citing 'its just too much' (not sure what they meant; behavior? coordinating services? general stress? They never said)
They each have diagnoses of Anxiety Disorders and Attachment Disorders. Both have adjusted to our wonderfully and are marvelously sweet children.
Both have been taking Risperdal for less than a year. The little one is on a higher dose, and was exhibiting more significant behaviors - tantrums, self injuring, breaking things. His sister was more moody. Now, they are compliant almost to a creepy extent, and often have a blank stare. I am also pretty concerned about the side effects. The little guy's weight increased significantly since on the meds (according to WIC records) and his sister is also overweight for her age, and they are still very young. I also wonder if it is having an effect on his gross/fine motor skills, which are very poor.
Anyway, all service providers, including the behavior specialist that works with the kids in the house during the week, agree that the meds may not be necessary, and should be discontinued (eventually), so we are working with the behavior services agency Dr. to do so this month. It appears that the people most certain that the meds. were necessary were the previous foster parents, but they never let the behaviorist work in their home, where the behavior occurred, to work with the kids. Red flag, to me.
Wondering if anyone has had experience with a child coming off Risperdal, and side effects. Right now they are on 1/2 the original dose. So far, no big changes, in behavior or otherwise, except the little guy hasn't slept quite as well.
**Big side note: I am not against meds; the team just agreed that we think we can handle teaching the little ones coping strategies to monitor and control themselves in this situation.**