View Full Version : Frustrated and at my witts end

11-24-15, 09:00 PM
I am a mommy to a 12 year old dxed with adhd-primarily inattentive--(athough his impulse control is horrible) major depression, high anxiety and disruptive mood disorder.

I feel like I am breaking from all the stress. He sees a therapist twice a month and a psychiatrist once every 3 months. He is constantly negative, sees no good in anything.

He literally doesn't think before he does anything. Example, he missed the bus so he decided to walk four miles to school down two very busy roads. Or his hair was a bit long so he decided to wack the front of it off with scissors. He loses things constantly or breaks things. He mutters, grumbles and argues when I ask him to do ANYTHING unless it's sitting in front of the tv or playing a video game. He gets mad at me bc I let him watch tv or play games very infrequently.

He says he isn't good at anything but refuses to put the effort in to getting good at anything. As soon as there is a little bit of effort required he just quits. His testing shows him as gifted all around with a genius level verbal iq--i know he is very intelligent, but because he is constantly losing papers and things he needs at school his grades are plummeting. The kids are calling him stupid and he is starting to believe that too.

He takes the lowest dosage of concerta because if we up it even a little he develops a bad tic. He also takes 1 mg Abilify as an add-on. That we also cannot move up bc of the tic.

His therapist is supposed to be working with him on cognative therapy, but I am seeing no results. In fact I feel things are getting worse. He was suspended a week ago for hitting a kid in the stomach bc the kid was picking on him. Then he sent an email telling the kid to quit being a b****.

I cannot get him to accept responsibility for anything. It is always someone else's fault. Always. I feel like I have been meeting with teachers and principals every week since he has been in school.

I even went so far as to put him in a charter school that seemed to cater more towards his needs. Packing up my life and moving to another city just to make the best choice for him that I though there was at the time. I am seriously considering online school for him, but I worry that we will not be able to handle being in the same house together that often.

I just don't know what to do with him anymore. And I'm worn out. I feel so overwhelmed.

11-24-15, 10:15 PM
I can't offer any advice but I'm sorry you are in this situation.
I'm sure your son is far from a happy camper too

I have to say, I would have and have walked to school after missing a bus. The thought of waiting for the next was unbearable enough that I figured I'd rather at least be moving towards campus rather than wait who knows how long exactly.

11-24-15, 10:56 PM
I should clarify that I meant "12" year old. Not 22. As Im sure that a 22 year old walking to school probably looks pretty normal as opposed to 12. Sorry about that!

11-24-15, 11:01 PM
I am a mommy to a 22 year old dxed with adhd-primarily inattentive--(athough his impulse control is horrible) major depression, high anxiety and disruptive mood disorder.

And reading this and then the rest of your post is what has me confused.

Is he 22?

11-24-15, 11:57 PM
If he is developing tics after a certain dose threshold, then chances are he's already in a state of sympathetic dominance and is on his way to adrenal fatigue.

Sympathetic dominance offers an explanation for his aggression/irritability/negativity. It is like being in a state of "fight or flight" at all times.

To facilitate an increase in the Concerta dose towards a therapeutic result, a typical approach in the States is to get a compounding pharmacy to prepare a special mixture of amphetamine salts and Intuniv. A more cost effective solution is to simply add Intuinv (guanfacine) to his regime. It is a sympatholytic drug (that directly relaxes the sympathetic nervous system) and will help to reduce the "fight or flight" state back down to something more environment/situation appropriate.

Tics under these circumstances will be eliminated by Intuniv and for this reason, Stimulant/Intuniv combination approaches are common.

My opinion regarding his lack of receptiveness to CBT is that he really needs his medication to be properly adjusted so that the stimulant is actually working. If it was working, he should report significant improvements in his feelings about all aspects of life.

11-25-15, 05:21 AM
I think the issue here might be that he is undermedicated or medicated with the wrong med. There are many other ones besides concerta or the methylphenidate class of drugs. If he is undermedicated that all of the things you mentioned would be considered understandable because he isnt being given the right tools to succeed. Therapy can be wonderful but without the proper meds, he cant be expected to have all of his ducks in a row. In fact even if he is perfectly medicated he could still be severely impaired enough to suffer from the things that you mentioned. I suggest that you read up on the more severe issues associated with adhd. It goes beyond the inattentiveness. What you describe sounds like my son. The risk taking and no concept of consequence or danger was something that we struggled with. When he was properly medicated, we saw huge improvements. He is almost 20 now and an amazing kid, but that never would have happened if we hadnt got his meds straigtened out when he was a kid. it saved my sons life and gave him the backdrop to paint a beautiful picture that is his life

11-25-15, 03:20 PM
I should clarify that I meant "12" year old. Not 22. As Im sure that a 22 year old walking to school probably looks pretty normal as opposed to 12. Sorry about that!

My parents used to come pick me up after school. I was usually pretty good about waiting(excavating a fire ant colony would keep me occupied for hours). But I can think of several times where I decided "screw waiting! I'm walking..." Walking may well have taken longer too. Of course, I didn't consider that I would be locked out and unable to get into the house anyway.

I hope you are able to work something out to help him :)

11-26-15, 12:13 AM
I should clarify that I meant "12" year old. Not 22. As Im sure that a 22 year old walking to school probably looks pretty normal as opposed to 12. Sorry about that!

Oops, I didn't see this. :)

11-26-15, 12:59 AM
Read the sticky thread here in the Parenting section titled "You know your child is ADHD when ..."

Everything you've mentioned is a result of your son's mental health disorder, something we've all dealt with as a child ourselves or as a parent.

Well, everything except the tics. That's just one disorder that sometimes happens alongside ADHD.

Your child does not have any control over these things, they are caused by his disorder.

It's a very real medical condition that affects the brain and the body.

Ask your local library if they have the book "ADHD - Living Without Brakes."

I found it very helpful in understanding my ADHD granddaughter, as well as my own childhood.

12-06-15, 11:31 PM
I don't know your financial situation, but if your kid is having this many problems, then meeting with therapist twice a month is clearly inadequate. I'm working on much more subtle issues and I see my therapist weekly. During a crisis point in my life--after my divorce--I saw a therapist twice a week for a few months.

Until you get a med that seems to really work, I definitely think you ought to be on monthly meetings with the psychiatrist. You can usually get a feel for a drug's effectiveness in a month. Time for the psychiatrist be be trying a lot of medicines and at a lot of doses ... and then combos of medicines ... and combos at different dosages. I would meet every three months with my psychiatrists only after the medication have stabilized ... and he was more or less checking up on me ... But if I were in a critical period (as your son seems to be) meeting every three months is not enough. Three months is the protocol that you use AFTER you get relatively satisfied with the meds.

I would say it's time to be more pushy with the therapist and with the psychiatrist. This is no time to be positive. They actually need your blunt and even critical feedback. The best way to do this is to talk about your frustration and about your son's symptoms ... "I'm worried because my son isn't getting any better." Give details ... and push on to ... "What new methods can you try? Why isn't he showing more progress?"

And of course, you might need to find a new therapist and/or a new psychiatrist. The difference between a decent therapist and an excellent one is HUGE!!!! To make a simple analogy, the difference is as wide as the difference between a professional NFL quarterback and a 12-year-old little leaguer. Yes, that huge. Because small improvements can make huge differences ... Combine multiple improvements or even the right med, and again the improvement can be enormous.

Also it may be time for you to talk more bluntly with your son about what he thinks he needs ... he might (maybe not) have some insight. Talk to teachers and ask them for suggestions. Talk to parents of kids with similar issues as your son and ask them for their recommendations.

Ask teachers if they have heard of particular techniques that seem effective, etc ... "Cognitive Therapy" sort of means nothing ... in that there are mediocre people who practice it and excellent people who practice it ... It's never the therapy itself in my opinion ... but the quality and skill and commitment of the therapist using the technique. Also the therapist's bond with your son is huge important. People make improvements for therapists they really like and love.

The first step is to get a lot more pushy and demanding of the therapists so that they can off their behinds and get more creative. Share your frustration with them!

Good luck.