Child anger/emotional issues, fighting and ADHD. Long. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 03-04-2010, 02:22 AM - Thread Starter
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I am having a lot of problems with my 8 year old DS. There are a myriad of issues at play, and quite frankly I'm losing control of the situation, and myself because of them.

He is 8 years old and he still, well, soils himself. We have been taking him to therapy for that, it hasn't seemed to help it all and he has actually gotten worse about it lately. The school counselor sees him for his problems at school; unwillingness to do homework, not relating well to peers, soiling himself at school.

There are many anger problems, and a lot of fighting. He has become very violent and aggressive towards me. Telling me he hates me, how I am making his life horrible, he throws things at me, argues with me over everything, is totally unreasonable and unwilling to compromise on ANYTHING. If it is not to his benefit it simple will not work for him and will NOT happen.

There are a lot of issues at play here: I was an incredibly young mother, I gave birth at 15. I was an irresponsible mother for many years, putting my self first. I regret that period of my life.

I was in an auto-pedestrian accident in 2006 that he witnessed, which caused him to totally regress in his potty training, and ever since has basically gone poop in his pants. After this accident, he left my custody because I was not physically able to take care of him for a very long time.

He lived with my sister, who was a good, stable home. During his time with my sister, he stopped soiling his pants, and flourished. He was only there for a year though. My son's father asked for, and took custody of our son from my sister and had him for two years.

I'm not entirely certain about all of the details of what went on in his home life with his father but, it's pretty obvious to me that his father was not an effective parent. I know that his father treated DS as his 'buddy', there was physical punishment, arguing and generally he lead an unstable lifestyle. DS began to soil himself regularly again there, and though his father denies it, DS will admit to it and adds that his father often just threw his underwear out because he didn't want to wash it.

When DS would come to stay with me, he would have piles and piles of homework that his father couldn't get him to do. Sometimes DS would be so far backed up in his homework that he'd have 30+ (sometimes they were just tiny things, like draw a bug, sometimes whole tests or work sheets) pages to do. It was ridiculous. DS also had a hard time coping with any kind of rule. I know now that is was because his father was VERY lenient in his 'rules'.

I know my son is very likely ADD/ADHD; he has a hard time focusing, easily sidetracked, is totally unable to work unprompted and unmonitored. I feel totally overwhelmed.

DS was recently put on Strattera, and I didn't fill the prescription for a while because I was afraid of putting him on medication. Well, I filled it today and gave it to him. I really never want to give it to him again.

I just don't know what to do anymore. I don't want to fight with my son, I just want there to be a happy, harmonious home. It just seems like no matter what I do, I cannot win with him. No matter how gently or firmly I try to ask or address things with him, it always leads to a fight. I can't get him to complete homework, I can't get him to clean and I don't even know how to go about getting him to stop throwing things at me.

I don't know if I need advice. I probably do, I just wanted to ramble and get this out there. I'm just so burnt out. I've been on 100mg of zoloft and to be honest, I may ask my psychiatrist to up the dosage because I cannot cope with things at home.

blah.

If you actually read that, thank you. It means a lot to me. It truly does.
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#2 of 8 Old 03-04-2010, 03:27 AM
 
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I'm so sorry you are going through this. I am in a similar situation, though maybe not as severe as yours. My son is 10, and witnessed a regular stream of violence in utero and during his infancy. He has obvious anger and fight or flight issues. School has become a major problem. He doesn't like or trust me most of the time. He even seems possessed when it's really bad. I will be keeping an eye on this for help.

There's got to be a solution or something that helps.

Elizabeth, mama to 4 kids and 5 chickens.
The grateful recipient of 3 home water births, 1 being an accidental UC.:
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#3 of 8 Old 03-04-2010, 06:15 AM
 
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Have you tried seeing someone who has experience with PTSD in children? It can often mimic ADD/ADHD, the anger issues may be symptomatic of that as well, even the soiling can figure in. Wittnessing the accident by itself would have been very traumatic for a child, then factor in his early life, and his fathers dubious discipline. I'd try and find someone who has experience in childhood trauma to work with your son. Unfortunately many therapists do not have experience in trauma and treat the symptoms instead of the root cause. You might call around to various therapists and ask about it, your local child and family services branch might also know of someone, and your doctor and the school would be good places to ask. I hope you find something that works, it sounds like the poor guy has been through a lot.
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#4 of 8 Old 03-04-2010, 01:13 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oubliette8 View Post
Have you tried seeing someone who has experience with PTSD in children? It can often mimic ADD/ADHD, the anger issues may be symptomatic of that as well, even the soiling can figure in. Wittnessing the accident by itself would have been very traumatic for a child, then factor in his early life, and his fathers dubious discipline. I'd try and find someone who has experience in childhood trauma to work with your son. Unfortunately many therapists do not have experience in trauma and treat the symptoms instead of the root cause. You might call around to various therapists and ask about it, your local child and family services branch might also know of someone, and your doctor and the school would be good places to ask. I hope you find something that works, it sounds like the poor guy has been through a lot.
Yeah, good therapists are hard to find. My son did a whole 18 session course at Kaiser to no avail. The therapist was worthless.

Chiropractic help is a possibility. I have heard good things about what they can do for kids with different issues. I have just never had the money to pursue it, and no one seems to cover that.

Una, I thought a lot about your post last night. I hope you are doing okay.

Edit - Is school stressing him out? Can you do homeschooling or independent study for a bit and see if that helps? I would love to, but DS's dad won't let me. .

Edit #3 - About the meds, listen to your little voice. I totally understand why you gave it to him. However, if there is one thing I have learned here, it's to listen to that little mama voice. I am not a Dr., so do not take what I say too seriously, but really, I know I would rather listen to my heart and be wrong than to do something against my will and be right.

Elizabeth, mama to 4 kids and 5 chickens.
The grateful recipient of 3 home water births, 1 being an accidental UC.:
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#5 of 8 Old 03-04-2010, 11:38 PM - Thread Starter
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I am actually looking around for another therapist. It's hard to know who is good and who isn't. I sort of like his current therapist, he very much tells it like it is. I also really like his school counselor, she is very gentle. I just know that neither are the exact right fit for his issues.

I didn't think to find someone to address the trauma, my main goal was simply to get him to therapy as fast as possible and hope that something, anything, would help for the time being.

I am trying, really trying to make the errors of the past better. I am trying to be a good mother, to both of my children. It's just so hard when you are so emotionally drained.

Redebeth, we actually do see a chiro quite often, and she helps a lot. I adore her.

Thank you, Ladies, for responding. I truly appreciate it. <3
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#6 of 8 Old 03-05-2010, 06:37 AM
 
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wash.gif  Me  + bikenew.gif Dh =  broc1.gif  Dd1(9 yrs) + hearts.gif  Dd2(6 yrs) and blowkiss.gif Ds(3.5 yrs)
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#7 of 8 Old 03-13-2010, 10:42 PM
 
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I hope you and your son experience some peace and solutions. My DS is almost 7 - we are experiencing a portion of what you describe - I feel your pain. Hang in there ... I hope solutions appear.
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#8 of 8 Old 03-14-2010, 02:09 PM
 
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I'm currently reading Freeing your Child from Anxiety by Tamar Chansky. (And I am sure it is coloring my reading of your post.) Some of what you describe can be manifestations of anxiety. The book also talks a bit about PTSD. And has suggestions of things you can do at home.
It might be helpful for you while you look for that right-fit therapist.
Hope you find some peace soon.
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