Re: Destroy?

Posted by Amaranth Rose on Feb 12, 2004 at 05:23

Re: Destroy? (Kathy)

Well, Hmm. I read what you posted. All of it. Then I sat me down and thought a great deal. Much of what you said I could relate to from my own personal experiences. I've been raising (trying to, anyway) a male child who has Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. I hate to bring that up here because it becomes a point of contention; there are those who "don't believe" in ADHD, who treat me as if I "believe" in ADHD like some people "believe" in the Easter bunny or Santa Claus. I expect to catch some flack, therefore. When I say my son has ADHD, I mean that he has been tested and diagnosed by one of the foremost Child Psychologists in this country whose interest is in the disorder specifically, and the good doctor told me, "Of the fourteen major criteria for diagnosis, five have to be met and your son has thirteen to a high degree and is midline on the fourteenth." I'm not joking. This kid has been a real challenge. Nothing works to motivate him but food and money.

I used to kind of smirk at my sister-in-law, who used to say to her older son, "NONONONONO!!" when he was doing something wrong. I thought one "NO!" ought to be enough. Then I had my own. Both my nephew and my son have ADHD, BTW. My son's is rather worse, according to my brother. He's seen both kids in action.

He had no sense of logical consequences, no concept of hurting another being, very little response to pain (You could wear out your arm spanking him, it made no impression on him). He almost chased a butterfly over a deck railing to a drop onto a concrete slab fifteen feet below; he was three. The focus was on the butterfly; the rest of the world didn't exist for him until I screamed and distracted him. He ran out into the street in front of our house; I dragged him (literally) back into the yard and dusted his pants; he looked right at me, stuck out his tongue at me and ran right back out into the street again.

IF there are 99 ways to do something right, and one way wrong, he'll do it wrong. If there's a right way and a way that's a cheat, he'll cheat. He does the absolute minimum in school to get by, and is flunking several subjects in his junior year in high school (year 11) despite having test scores repeatedly in the 95-99th percentile range. When he was 4-1/2 I taught him to read at home in nine weeks. Not kidding. ON the other hand, the kid lies like a rug. He seems to prefer lying to telling the truth, and he does know the difference. He seems to enjoy the thrill of getting away with something and lives on the fear of getting caught. He's told me his teachers have molested him at school. He WAS molested by his father, but that's another journey.

For him, everything had to be black and white. For years, he'd get angry when he'd ask me what time it was, and I'd look at the clock and say, "Ooh, it's about 7:30." He could tell time, he was just needling me. He'd look at the clock and get absolutely enraged if it was actually, say, 7:28 or 7:31 or something. Everything HAD to be EXACT. It wasn't "a foot", it was "twelve point zero inches" to him. There was no estimating. How far is it to the next town? "About seven miles" didn't serve as an answer. He'd watch the odometer and count the clicks (He couldn't subtract for crap, but he'd watch the numbers click over) for the entire distance and proudly and somewhat vindictively announce the exact distance to the one-tenth mile.

I can't make plans with him, because if they fall through (I have CFIDS, FM or ME to you, perhaps, and I never know in advance if I'm going to be able to do anything) or have to be changed for any reason, he gets VIOLENTLY upset (I do mean violent; usually aimed at me). Any course correction or change in plans is likely to provoke an angry outburst, though he's gotten better as he's grown up some.

Several years on Ritalin and antipsychotics and a couple years on a major antidepressants, and I begin to have some hope for him.

So, I read what you wrote with great interest, and I have to admit, I saw in what you wrote a great deal of my own life experiences with Shasta. I know it's "Fashionable" in many Psychiatric circles to pretend that people never have more than one thing wrong with them, but I have to wonder if your son was ever considered to have ADHD?

Life is a tough gig, and you don't get to choose what team you're on to start with or who your relatives are. It throws you some pretty severe curves from time to time. Sometimes it throws a honking big chunk of burning metal your way, or a malformation of one system or another, or a kid who just flat is way outside the bounds of "Normal". Life ain't easy. If it were, everybody would be doin' it. You do the best you can with what you got to work with and what you know or think you know at the time; you hope for the best; and you try to forgive yourself when you get further down the road and find out it was the wrong thing to do but you're going to survive it. Because you have to. You've got to go on, and you've got to share with your neighbors. With a little luck you learn enough from each other not to make each other's mistakes, at least.

Appreciate what you shared. I respect and honor you for sharing. Whether you stick around with this loosely knit bunch of loose screws, or wander off into the void, I'm glad you happened by.

Follow Ups:

Post a Followup



[ Forum ] [ New Message ]