I'm a SAHM to 5 kids (2, 3, 5, 6, 9). The 2yo has a possible speech delay (I've had other kids with speech delay and he seems to be right along where they were at this point), the 3yo has Sensory Processing Disorder, the 6yo has SEVERE ADHD, and the 9yo has mild ADHD. Compared to the 6yo, he kinda seems like he doesn't at times, but once we can focus a little more away from 6yo, big time noticeable. I've been homeschooling the 9yo for the last 8 months but am ready to throw in the towel because he throws major attitude about EVERYTHING and I tried to homeschool the 6yo for the last 2 months of kindergarten but it coincided with her going off medication and that ended all learning for her.
I struggle with the 6yo more than anyone/anything else. She can't go into the bathroom alone, she can't read alone, can't write alone, can't play alone. She jumps on everyone, kicks, screams, makes tons of babble noises, shrieks, climbs, runs, and seems to enjoy annoying everyone. She was on medication and was absolutely PERFECT but insurance ended and we had to stop giving it. She has been off since June 1st and I cry ALL THE TIME because of how hard she makes the house. She is going back to public school for 1st grade.
3yo is sweet as can be, but is VERY needy emotionally and is ALWAYS into food/drinks, breaking into the kitchen to get it. He alone would be ok to handle with his "quirks" but I'm getting exhausted chasing him room to room ALL THE TIME. It was suggested he MAY have ADHD but he was so young when they suggested it, I brushed off.
My 5yo is getting shafted on awesome attention and has started acting a little....nutty? like her big sis. I'm not sure if it because she thinks thats how shes supposed to act, she likes the attention, or if this is just the first signs of ADHD for her as well. Until about 6 months ago, she was the calmest, quietest, almost perfect child.
9yo acts up a lot and I know thats part age related, but its been going on for 5 years now. After age 5, his personality just became a challenge. He has fine motor delays (minor) and we are supposed to be resuming OT for him soon.
. Oh, and my mom (whom we are living with for the next month and a half) INSISTS I don't tell anyone about their "labels" because people will automatically decide they don't want to interact with them. I think thats weird and I do tell people who point out their "quirks" that its not their fault, not to judge them, because of their ADHD or SPD. I haven't had anyone say anything about the 9yo motor skills but I have brought it up in a more in depth conversation and she thinks its pretty much the worst thing to ever tell anyone. Oh, and my mom thinks 9yo is absolutely God's Gift to the world so anything I say is shut down and IMPOSSIBLE to be true.
I'm just losing it. I cannot go like this much longer. There is only one of me, too many of them, and too much individual attention needed.
I hear ya! I have a house full of SN kiddos and I feel like giving up about every day! I am becoming aware also of my own SN's and that my kids trigger my own issues with anxiety, depression and ADD. None of us our currently medicated (I am pg and we just moved and our getting insurance/providers set up) So it can be a hot mess here some days.
I wanted to let you know that Ritalin is available as a generic and can be extremely inexpensive. The downside to Ritalin is that it is shorter acting so you have to dose 2-3 times a day and coming off of it can be a little more abrupt (a lot of kids get irritable in the evening when their last dose is wearing off). The plus side is that it works really well and its cheap! My oldest DS who has ADHD (among other things) actually prefers Ritalin to Concerta or Focalin or any of the other extended release stimulants. He says it works better (he's 17). We just couldn't remember to give it to him and he was pretty irritable in the evenings so we have stuck with the extended release but yeah - in your situation I would get a RX for Ritalin until you get insurance.
Have you applied for your state's children's health insurance program? You can get services and medical care for your kids. Being without insurance and having SN kids has got to be one of the most frustratingly helpless feelings there is. BTDT - that is how I know! We went 2 years without ins for our oldest three because their bio-dad was supposed to cover them and wouldn't, and their step-dad's ins wouldn't cover them because of fact #1. We now have state insurance for them and then DH changed jobs and the new carrier wasn't nearly as picky so we are double covered. I can't tell you what a relief it is! I highly recommend looking at what is available in your state.
As far as family members - they cannot possibly understand and the more you try to convince them, the more frustrated and misunderstood you will feel. I can't tell you how frequently I felt judged by my own family - especially soon after my oldest sons were diagnosed with ASD. They just did.not.get.it. And after a year or two I was tired of trying to get them to. Do you have a close relationship to your mom? If you had a heart to heart, do you think she'd hear you? If so, maybe try that. If not and she's one of those stubborn toxic types, I would put a healthy emotional distance there. Life is way too hard as a parent of SN kids to have anyone second guessing and criticizing you. And I have said that through tears to my family members! That is a deal breaker for me and they now know it.
And just so you know, I wholeheartedly disagree that you should hide your children's labels. Labels get help and services. Your daughter will need those in public school. The behavior you describe at home is not conducive to learning in a classroom setting. If you don't contact them, they will be contacting you. You don't want your daughter to have a bad experience. These are formative years. If she has an IEP that will help her have success in school, that will go a long way in helping her have overall success and confidence. Again, BTDT. My oldest lived silently with his labels until 8th grade! He got his first IEP when he was 14! His grades went from C's to A's. he had C's because he could never remember to turn his homework in. His IEP reduced his work load and his homework gets completed as a study hall each day. Easy peasy! Its made all the difference. He is a senior next year, well on his way to college. He will take his IEP with him there. I doubt we would have had the same outcome had we insisted that he diagnosis not be brought up at school. School just gets harder, academics get more intense and it can be a nightmare for kids who need support and aren't getting it. And wouldn't your mom rather her grandchildren's teachers see bright kids with ADHD needing help vs coming to her own conclusions that these kids are spoiled or bratty? One of the hardest things for people with ADHD to overcome is the negative feedback they experienced before diagnosis. Diagnosis (the "label") is freeing because it helps people see past the behavior and see the person. Opposite of what most people expect but that has been my experience as a parent and as an educator in the public school system.
I highly recommend any of Dr Hallowell's work - he's an MD of psychiatry with ADHD himself and two kids with the diagnosis. I have his book "Delivered from Distraction" and I found it very, very inspiring. He focuses on the positives and the realities in a way that I found both helpful and hopeful.
Don't give up mama! There is hope! You just need some help and support right now. You are right, you can't do it all, so don't expect yourself to. Do what you need to so you have the supports in place by creating your "team" of teachers, doctors, counselors and (hopefully) family and things will start looking up.
Mom to DS(17) DS(15) DS(12) My gifted, quirky, wonderful teens!
Mama to Jack 11.08 and Liam 9.11 and due with boy #6!
Blissfully married to the love of my life since 8.8.8
Earthmama4 gave you some great advice and insight. Can't add much except .
Well, a tiny suggestion: try to do something fun everyday. Get out of the house, even if it is just to run through the sprinklers outside. Or make a batch of popcorn, and enjoy movie night, all together. Take dinner to a park for a picnic. I don't know what would work for your family, but when things get overwhelming, I have found it really helps to re-establish the bond. For a while, I had 6 kids, 5 of whom were high needs (2 therapeutic level foster kids, my bio-son with ASD, and an infant and a 2 year old - also a very full house!). That summer, when it looked like August would last for years, we all needed to escape!
Rhu - mother,grandmother,daughter,sister,friend-foster,adoptive,and biological;not necessarily in that order. Some of it's magic, some of it's tragic, but I had a good life all the way (Jimmy Buffet)
We've been trying to get out a lot, because that helps the most, but we're losing it inside.
My mom snapped at my 6yo for making noises this morning while in timeout. I stood up for her because while she was making noises, she was standing in her "spot" and doing what she was supposed to. I've tried to explain how ADHD makes it nearly impossible for some kids to just stand quietly. It isn't her fault. Well, my 6yo stopped making the noises so she could listen and then resumed when we were quiet and my mom freaked out "SEE? You just told her its okay! Now she thinks its okay to do that!" And honestly, it is ok with me that she is making noises. She is medicated now and is a different child once the meds kick in, but she isn't being "bad" by having ADHD. I asked my mom if she would yell at a child for a physical disability and she said "if they didn't do what I said." grrr. It grosses me out how she is inside. :(
Hopefully this is our week to move. No one wants to rent to a family with 5 kids. I'm so tired of not living where they can be free to play and make noise.
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