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General Parenting Issues The purpose of this forum is to discuss general parenting issues related to children with AD/HD(ADD & ADHD)

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Old 12-21-09, 10:19 PM
auntie auntie is offline
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How can I help my nephew and my sister?

I would love some advice and feedback from all parent's dealing with ADHD. I am upset and emotional about this and really need to speak with my sister, but want to do it in a constructive way that will help her and my 7 year old nephew.

Here is some background: 7 year old nephew formally diagnosed with ADHD last spring. High energy and can get very angry and lash out. Medication has helped somewhat with his attention levels in school, can't remember what my sister told me he is on, but is only on 5mg at this time. My concern is his anger and his lashing out with physical violence.

He has had to some degree since toddler-hood those angry fits, but it was hard to tell what was the age and what was being a very active boy. I guess that is what is so hard with this - that bit of gray area. It's not black and white. Bear with me. I will try not to write a novel. My heart is hurting so much over this I might go on and on.

My nephew with the ADHD is the son of my only sister, and in fact my only sibling. She and I are very close. I have 5 year old boy/girl twins and have hit that stage where the older male cousin is influencing my son. A huge amount of the time my nephew is very good with him - I think he enjoys playing the older cousin/sibling role and I have considered it to be a very positive and therapeutic role for my nephew.

About 6 months ago I gave my sister a small upholstered chair that I was not using and was perfect for a corner of her bedroom. I am not fully aware of the background on this in that I don't know if my nephew was upset about anything prior to this action, but he took a knife from the kitchen and slashed the chair a few times. My sister was concerned but she also played it down to a large degree saying that it might have been one of those boy things where he wanted to see what happened or how it felt. In other words, she played it down to a huge degree. I found this incident to be very alarming and disturbing. She did go ahead and did a few sessions with a child psychologist, but their insurance is terrible and they were paying out of pocket and it was hard to keep going with it. Especially as Nephew did not seem to respond hugely to it.

Fast forward to tonight and my 5 year old son telling my husband that his cousin wanted to bring a knife from the kitchen to school and cut "Billy" with it. I don't know who Billy is in his class, no idea what the bullying situation is there, obviously something. But the problem with my nephew is it could be the average 7 year old boy one upping type bullying and he reacts to the extreme from it. He gets too angry too fast.

I need to speak with my sister about this. Out of concern for "Billy", out of concern for my son's relationship and even I hate to say it, safety in hanging out with his cousin without a parental eye on the situation. And obviously for my nephew. Who is a victim of this evil diagnosis.

I don't want to just dump this building concern on her without some constructive help. We see the same pediatrician and I mean to speak to him about this, but I know the Heppa or Hippa, whatever, will maybe constrict what he can talk about even though this is my nephew.

If you have read this far - thank you. I would appreciate any feedback, any advice. Anything. ADHD seems to be a large far reaching sea, and we are in a tiny boat without knowledge of which port to head for.
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Old 12-22-09, 12:07 AM
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Re: How can I help my nephew and my sister?

A few suggestions, first off read up on ADHD. The more you know, the better you can respond to things. I don't know them off the top of my head, but I am sure other members can point you in the direction with great links.

Did he have these anger issues before medication? If not, it is possible that it's a reaction to the meds (not a doctor, so I can't say for sure). It's also possible it's not ADHD, or not just ADHD. Many other disorders can look like ADHD at first glance, but later (usually after trying treatment with little to no success) it found that it wasn't ADHD, or it's ADHD and something else (a co-morbid condition).

I've found, and noticed with conversations with other parents, that may times medication alone is not enough. It will help get the brain to where it needs to be, but it doesn't fill in all the "missing" things that might not have been learned yet. For us, and I always recommend it, medication along with play therapy worked wonders. My son went from choking a girl at school, being able to stop himself from lashing out, an then ended up on the honor roll.

I'd also suggest a full evaluation, not just looking at does he have ADHD. Like I said, many times what appears to be ADHD isn't, and unless you're dealing with someone trained to spot the differences, it can be missed.
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Old 12-22-09, 08:34 AM
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Re: How can I help my nephew and my sister?

Quote:
Originally Posted by auntie View Post
Who is a victim of this evil diagnosis.
I would never consider call a diagnosis of any type "evil". It is always better to have a name for it. Granted ADD/ADHD does come with its own negative conotations, but with that being said their are many of us who thrive with it.

My son has ADHD and I think might also be Bipolar not sure on that yet. But his is under control with a two medinice treatment plan he is currently on Strattera 25mg, Concetra 33mg with a 5mg retial as a booster in the afternoon.

I chose as a parent to start out with the Strattera just from the personal experience of having the stimilits as my only opition as child myself. I tried the Strattera first to help him. With the Strattera he gained better control of his emotional outbursts of tell pretty much everyone he hated them both to being all lovey dovey to us. Now he is much better can controlling himself and his anger.

He was still having issues focusing at school that is were the concetra came into play. Now he is well adjusted in school. He is focusing on what he needs to do.

Just remember the dosing for this medication take time to get them dialed in for the best results. It took almost 5 months to get my son's meds dialed in.
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Old 12-22-09, 04:30 PM
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Re: How can I help my nephew and my sister?

Thank you Lady Lark for your insight. I found that link to Dr. Russell Barkley's lecture and will read up on that. He did have the anger issues prior to the medication. I am going to research into this "play therapy" you all are speaking of. I most definitely think therapy must go hand in hand with medication. This forum has an amazing wealth of information so I have much studying to do!

And whorton - my apologies on referring to it as evil. Much too strong a word and I had myself very upset last night and very worried for my sister and nephew.

thank you both. off to study!
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