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About a year ago my ds (now 6 1/2) told me he had people living inside his head and that he wished he had told me years ago. he has mentionned it probably 3 times since then, but not regularly and i guess i wrote it off at first as some sort of imaginary friend.<br><br>
however, he says there ants like an army in his head, and that there are people on the good side and ants on the other and that he is their general and has to give them orders and that sometimes when he has nothing to do it is good and he likes to think about them but sometimes he wishes they werent there.<br><br>
he is incredibly bright and has the reading age of at least an 11 year old and is very able mathmatically as well. he plays computer games which involve battling and things like that but only for about an hour or two once a week, although he really loves these games he has somewhat of an addictive personality so we limit him.<br><br>
i am trying to ask him the right questions like do the people in your head tell you to do things (probably sounds dumb but i really am trying to figure this out) but tonight he sounded almost stressed about it as he said he was having trouble listening to his bedtime story because of them.<br><br>
i guess i want to know is - does this sound anywhere within the realsm of normal or does it sound like something i ought to do something about and if so what?<br><br>
generally he is a very happy child, he enjoys playing and reading, he plays in the garden with his siblings and is very good at empathising with others, in fact he has always had what i would consider quite a high level of emotional intelligence.<br><br>
he can be boisterous and a pain, but also kind loving and helpful and most of the time seems very relaxed and happy.<br><br>
is there anyway this could be normal, or does it just sound a little too weird? tonight he talked about there being a cannon in there and that even if he could get rid of the ants the cannon would still be there.<br><br>
i guess what worries me is that he has not changed his description about these people in his head for about a year, there has been no deviation or change and he claims tey have always been there. i have not talked to anyone about this as he asked me not to and i have respected his privacy. however i am now worried, which is why i have signed myself in with a new username so as to respect his privacy.<br><br>
please help i dont know who to turn to or even if i need to talk to anyone at all.
 

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I couldn't read this and not reply - first of hugs to you, its a situation I could never imagine myself in - <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> - take as many as you need.<br><br>
So i have been thinking about what you wrote - I think I would have reacted the same way as yourself, but after a few times of him mentioning his ants I would start to ask questions as well. He is obviously concerned about it as well - I feel the anxiousness through your post - I would see what I could find out over the internet first of all. I am hesitant about taking him immediately to drs etc and then him being pigeon-holed into something that maybe he's not or something along that line. I hate it when people say that they have a fussy child or highly spirited child and then that 'label' stays with them for the rest of their lives - just wanted to explain my hesitancy. But i think find out as much info as possible first and then take decisions from there - you may find help in the health forum or special needs you could xpost in those forums.<br><br>
You may want to take him to a few CST sessions you don't have to mention anything to the therapist and see what happens - these sort of sessions can work wonders - there's someone on MDC that is studying CST that maybe able to help you - PM if you want to find out. I'll keep thinking ...<br>
hugs to you both
 

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My son is six and he has told me before that his mind is thinking too fast to listen to and at night sometimes he tells me there are people in his head yelling at him. These things mostly happen when he is trying to relax or go to sleep.<br><br>
it's not quite the same situation, but do you think he may be anxious about anything and his mind is just having trouble relaxing? I have given him teething tablets with chamomile when he really is having problems and saying the people are screaming at him and it does help.<br><br>
I would look at other aspects of his life too, like concentration, anxiety, trouble sitting still and things like that.
 

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as i child i used to get rushing voices in my head , often at times when i was feeling stressed or just overwhelmed if there was lots going on in my life, perhaps some boisterous physical excersize when he feels this may help, y'know just as a release of tension , then perhaps his body and mind will allow it's self to relax. Just an idea, mine seemed to calm down with age , as i found life a bit less frustrating and found myself in control a bit more.<br>
I hope you find a solution that it helpful for your son.
 

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Hi mrsweasley,<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/hug2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Hug2"><br>
I can not even imagine how worried you must feel! I would probably check all the routes out as the previouse posters mentioned, the more info/ possible options you have available the better I think!<br>
I have heard of things like this in two differnet situations, although there are a lot of other reasons out there as well I am sure!<br>
Firstly it could be that your dc is highly sensitive, which has a lot of good aspects but also as you can see bad ones, as it takes a lot of work for them to calm down and relax, can be easily overstimulated by our high strung society etc. Maybe relaxation exercises would come in handy, like regular yoga classes or starting a type of meditation, maybe when he starts to understand his voices in his head it will make him feel better. I mean this now very seriously, I would not ignore things like that or tell him that he is imagining these voices because when denial there could be problems later. Maybe chack with a psychiatrist and see what he/ she says, might be due to him just beeing sensitive.<br>
The other problem could be, which I really hope it is not, that he is actually sick and the voices in his head tell him of an illness in his body or in his head somwhere? Sorry, I really do not mean to worry you even more here, but I think it is important to mentione this.<br><br>
It sounds to me that you have a very bright and sensitive child and whatever he tells you should be taken seriouse. Did you have him checked for specially gifted childrens programs, they might have encountered situations like this before? With regards to going to a pediatrician....not so sure, as most of them just put things like that down to him being a kid with a lot of fantasy (which might be) but I would definitely investigate the whole picture!<br><br>
Good luck mummy and lots of hugs!
 

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I can see how that would be worrisome!<br><br>
Is he functioning well socially? Emotionally? Educationally? Does he interact well with other people? If so, then I'd not be overly concerned. It may be a very active imagination, it could be his way of expressing to you the way he thinks about his thinking (metacognition).<br><br>
If he hadn't told you about the thoughts/ants/cannon would you have other cause for concern about him? If so, then it may be worth checking around, or at least talking to your health car provider (not ness. with his knowledge, and make sure that whoever you talk to can respect his privacy to.).
 

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I used to have a witch in my brain. She showed up when I was around 3.5-4, right around when my brother was born. I don't recall her telling me what to do, but I blamed her for everything(ie my room being messy, or spilling things).<br><br>
Now the witch is no longer in my head, though I do have conversations with myself as if there's another person(aka my conscious) there.<br><br>
Has he mentioned them to anyone else and perhaps they've said something to him so he thinks it's wrong? Do the games he play have these ants/canons in them? he's mentioned they've always been there, but to a 6.5yo forever isn't necessarily actually forever.
 

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OK, I would read up on childhood OCD just to see. It sounds like he's a bit anxious, and you mention that he has an 'addictive personality' -- not sure what the means in a 6 1/2 year old, but could it be related?<br><br>
I say this because it sounds a bit like what the post-partum depression literature calls 'intrusive thoughts' - thoughts that he can't control/can't keep from thinking. And that's a form of OCD. The 'good' news is that counseling is often very effective for kids with these kinds of issues. It may just turn out to be your average kid weirdness, but since it's causing your anxiety, and maybe him, I'd check it out.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">OK, I would read up on childhood OCD just to see. It sounds like he's a bit anxious, and you mention that he has an 'addictive personality' -- not sure what the means in a 6 1/2 year old, but could it be related?<br><br>
I say this because it sounds a bit like what the post-partum depression literature calls 'intrusive thoughts' - thoughts that he can't control/can't keep from thinking. And that's a form of OCD. The 'good' news is that counseling is often very effective for kids with these kinds of issues. It may just turn out to be your average kid weirdness, but since it's causing your anxiety, and maybe him, I'd check it out.</td>
</tr></table></div>
What a good suggestion.........it does sound very much like maybe an OCD issue. I have anxiety issues lumped in under the OCD blanket and I can remember as a child always thinking bad things were gonna happen and not being able to stop those thought or convince myself it wasn't gonna happen. I can't remember voices, but I can remember many sleepless nights because of the fears. Unlike bi-polar or schizophrenia which don't tend to manifest until early adulthood, OCD can start very very early.<br>
I do not say these things to frighten only to help. I wish very much my parents had listened to me as you're doing for your ds and helped me deal with the anxiety back then instead of living with it to this day. It may be nothing, but I would suggest being proactive on this one. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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Hugs momma. What a thing to be worried about!<br><br>
I agree that you are doing the best thing by not rushing to the doctor. Other than a few cases of your son mentioning something you don't fully understand there have been no other signs that there is the possibility of a problem. I too would just be watchful and continue to talk with him about it as he brings it up.<br><br>
I wanted to share that when I was little I would often get these very strange sensations as I was falling asleep that I interpreted as "trying to smooth out the blanket in my head." It's incredibly hard to describe as an adult with a much better vocabulary and more life experience but something about the way your son described ants battling in his head clicked with me. So maybe he is using his limited vocabulary and experience to describe a feeling/sensation and when he speaks of it the literal meaning of his words just comes across a little bizarre.<br><br><br><br><br>
Another thing that comes to mind...forgive me for getting a little deep and scholarly and maybe a little wacky here. I am also not trying to say this is what I think is happening. Just sharing <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> .<br><br>
My husband came across this book, The <span style="text-decoration:underline;">Origins of Consciousness and the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind</span> by Julian James while working on a PHD. (According to him it's a pretty heavy, tough read so I'm not saying rush out and read it.) He was fascinated by the book and shared some things about it that you may find interesting.<br><br>
Please understand I have not read this book so I am giving you my take on his interpretation of the book.<br><br>
The book talks about humans having once had a very common experience of having voices talk to them in there head. Not in a schizophrenic way, but in a way somewhat like the idea of guardian angel or you conscience talking to you. So people may have actually had conversations in their head that were a result of the 2 sides of the brain communicating. Where as modern man does not usually have an actual voice talking as this communication is going on.<br><br>
The book goes on to say that some people still have the remnants of this going on in there brain and it is commonly interpreted as the voice of God guiding them. Others interpret it as intuition or other guiding force.<br><br>
Your description of your son made me wonder if he was occasional experiencing something like this. As his brain is growing and new connections are forming it seems to me that it would not be totally unexpected that he would experience some mental activity that is difficult to describe. As I said above, maybe he is using his limited vocabulary and experience to describe a feeling/sensation and when he speaks of it the literal meaning of his words just comes across a little bizarre.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
how confusing and worrying. does he sound worried about it at all? does he mention it much or do you ask him about it?<br><br>
i would be careful in asking too much as it may start to be more of an issue for him than it was previously.<br><br>
if he seems upset or unhappy about it i would see about seeing somebody who could maybe talk to him, but make sure that you are careful not to let your ds think that you have talked about something that he has shared with you in confidence, as he may be reluctant to ahre with you again.<br><br>
it is great that he feels so free to talk about his worries and feelings with you.
 

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hmmmmm...<br><br>
i think if my kid were telling me the things your ds has said, i would be concerned, but not overly. i would do what you've done and try to ask more questions. i'd try to leave them open-ended -- i.e. -- "i was thinking about what you were telling me about the ants in your head -- how do you feel about that? can you tell me more?" etc rather than "does that make you anxious", etc.<br><br>
if he does seem anxious you might like to investigate some calming techniques. i really like the <a href="http://www.yogakids.com/" target="_blank">yoga kids</a> videos. we got one from netflix. there are some books about childhood anxiety, too, that might be worth a read -- <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FHelp-Worried-Kids-Conquer-Anxiety%2Fdp%2F1593852193%2Fref%3Dpd_bbs_sr_1%2F102-2269260-7805718%3Fie%3DUTF8%26s%3Dbooks%26qid%3D1179855049%26sr%3D8-1" target="_blank">Help For Worried Kids</a> is one and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FYour-Anxious-Child-Teachers-Children%2Fdp%2F0787960403%2Fref%3Dpd_bbs_sr_1%2F102-2269260-7805718%3Fie%3DUTF8%26s%3Dbooks%26qid%3D1179855158%26sr%3D8-1" target="_blank">Your Anxious Child</a> is another i've read.<br><br>
i've known several boys who developed tics growing up and then grew out of them so i'm wondering if it could be something kinda like that.<br><br>
what really prompted me to write was AbbieB's story from her childhood about the blanket in her head. when i was a kid i used to get this weird out of sync sensation. often-times i would just wake up with it. it was like i was out of step with the world or the world was out of step with me -- kinda like music being played too fast or too slow. the only way i could get out of it was to sing and then it would instantly be right. i vividly remember having this dream one night which was not really a nightmare, but sort of an anxiety dream. it sounds really silly now, but i dreamed of red jello and green jello racing each other down a wooded mountain-side in like bob-sled runs or sluices <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> (crazy dreams), but it provoked that out of sync feeling. he may just need a technique like how i sang a song to make the ants go away. i don't know what that technique would be, but he might. you could try by asking him if he'd like them to go away and tell him that sometimes singing can help something like that or maybe he has another idea.<br><br>
hth and i would definitely keep tabs on it, but try not to make too big of a deal out of it unless you think it's bothering him a lot.
 

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You have gotten so many great responses. You may want to look nutritionally. I tend to get obsessive thoughts and so does my 9yo son. We both take fish oil supplements and that seems to curb the thoughts quickly. Fish oil helps with my depression, anxiety and obsessive thoughts. Just figured I would mention it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br>
Wendi
 

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Hmm, could it possibly have anything to do with his ears? Like he has fluid in there or wax and is hearing weird echoing sounds and getting weird sensations??<br><br>
Or could it be tinnitus? I found a page about tinnitus in children <a href="http://www.tinnitus-audiology.com/children.html" target="_blank">http://www.tinnitus-audiology.com/children.html</a><br><br>
I thought of this because I've had problems with wax and have had ear ringing, etc. from it and it is a very strange sensation. So I could see a child interpreting it as ants crawling around in his head.
 
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