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Venting but also looking for help.

Posted by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 11:02 AM
  • 20 Replies

Ok, so here's the thing. My step-DD is driving me nut. Ok I know that just sounds really mean, but both DH and I dont know what else to do. Her mother has full custody since DH went pro-se when they divorced so we have no say so as to what she is medicated for and we cant take her for a second opinon ( we already tried that and the court denied it since she was being seen by a board certified doctor, and we were told we would have to prove medical malpractice first). So, ya our hands are literally tied. Anyway, she has been diagnosed with Child-Onset bipolar, ADHD, and depression. In the past she was also diagnosed with Aspergers. I have tried to research as much as I can so I can be educated on all this stuff so I can be prepared for issues and such. Well nothing I am reading is helping. Also on a side note, Step-DS is also diagnosed with child onset-bipolar, and ADHD which I totally agree with because his actions and moods totally match it to a T and the meds do work for the most part.  Now back to Step-DD,  she has alwasy been slow when it comes to school, thats not really a problem. She does pass but its usually by the skin of her teeth. She has always been small for her age but has put on about 20 pounds in the past year. She is into things like Dora the Explorer still. Mentality wise she acts like she is a toddler.  She has zero respect for others, she has pushed teachers, spit is kids faces, told her coach to go to He!! and got kickd off the cheer team, will stand in the middle of class humming and rocking, ect. She is 9 yo going on 2 with how she acts. Baby talk, hysterical crying when she doesnt get her way, spacing out, picking at her skin till she bleeds, peeing her pant, and yestarday she pooped her pants! I asked if anyone forgot to wipe and she was like nnnoooooo, but I kept smelling something. so finally I asked if she pooped her pants and she just stared at me. After a minute or so she finally said yes. Ugh so gross. We dont know what to do. Is this part if the bi-polar or Aspergers or something? We've tried rewards and punishments for the behavior. We cant figure out why this is happening on a daily basis. Her mother acts like nothing is happening and acts like its a normal phase. I just dont get it. She has the kid medicated on multiple meds but doesnt ask the docotr about all these bad bahviors.  Any suggestions I appreciate.  Please also realize I am not bashing my step-DD or any kid with any issues. I just at a loss for why this stuff is happening. We try to make their visits enjoyable but we cant when a 9 yo pee's herself in public and we're not allowed to put her in pull ups or a diaper becasue the "docotor" said not to supposedly. I'm just at a loss.  does this sound normal ?



by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 11:02 AM
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by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 3:12 PM

Have you tried talking with the doctors about her behavior? Maybe they would be able to tell you more about what to expect, what's normal, and give you some tips for coping and correcting problems with her that are within the scope of her disorders and age range?

by Gold Member on Feb. 20, 2011 at 3:38 PM

maybe its time the 9 yr old talks to a counselor?

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 3:50 PM
I am new to the whole message board thing, but I saw this post and I feel for you, and your step daughter. I know you said that you don't have many rights because her mom has custody.
That may mean you don't have the right to take her somewhere else, but you do have the right to know what the doctors have said. To me that needs to be your first step. Find out exactly what her diagnoses are, and what the doc recommend. Then find out if there is a support group in your area.
To me that is your best bet. It sounds like you don't have enough info to make those important decisions.
Good luck and God bless.
P.S. remember when you are dealing with children with special needs there is no cookie cutter answer and you could in fact do more harm then good if you treat her as those special needs don't exist.
by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 3:57 PM

does she have therapists, like occupational therapists and a counselor? sounds like there is something else going on. also a regular doctor, it could be her meds or the combination of that isn't right for her. I personally don't believe medicating a child,  maybe some other type of therapy is in order. I would contact her school too to see if there is any therapists and help for her. Also if she is having trouble in school you could request a one on one aide. Does she have a behavioral plan in school? I would request an IEP in school and see where you can go from there to get her the help she needs. There is some groups that deal with adhd and autism and aspergers here on cm and maybe they could offer more help. I wish you the best.

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 5:18 PM

Thanks ladies.  Yes she see's a thyrapist weekly, she also see her pedi every month to draw blood to make sure the meds arn't doing damage. DH has called three times to make an appointment with her Phyciatric doctor but either 1) the guy is busy, 2) he says he'll call right back and never does, or 3) he's out fo state. There is always an excuse. We have called the pedi and our lawyer to try and get rights but the pedi then refused to see the kids about the bipolar  and ADHD any more and satated only a phyciatric doctor can prescribe the meds. So from that point on the new doctor only prescribed the meds. SDD was on a depression med last month but ONLY AFTER I did a check online and found the meds didnt go well together did the mother and doctor decide to take her off them.  The mother says it's mine and DH's fault SDD is like this, and states and tell SDD that it was because of the divorce and DH re-marrying that causes her depression and stuff. The thing is SDD was not quit 3 when they divorced and she was 4 when we married. So I know thats not the reason,. but her mother likes to blame us. Anyway, so ya there is more to it but I just dont know. DH has asked to go to the appointment but his ex will reschedule at the last minute and make the next appointment for a time he cant go.

As for an IEP yes, she has had them. Many of them. Basically the school is keeping her where she is until she reaches 5th grade then tranfering her to the behavioral disorder school step-DS is now sent to.  It basically all boils down to what the bio-mom wants done. I just didnt know if anyting she is doing actualy coinsides with what she is supposedly diagnosed with. I am trying to find a proper way to deal with her behavior issues. If this is something she cant control I dont want to treat her wrong but I do want to teach her her action are inappropriate. Know what I mean.

Thanks for the advice ladies.

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 6:11 PM
I have a 10 yr old son diagnosed with ADHD. I have also been told he has a mood disorder which basiclly is bi-polar without the title. To me it sounds like her meds aren't working correctly. What is she on?
It also sounds to me like she might be Autistic and ODD. How was she diagnosed. Did a psychologist diagnose her or the ped? First off with or without a disorder going in her pants at that age is not exceptable. What sort of rewards/punishments have you tried with her? The first thing to do is get her into a schedule/routine. Put it on the fridge or somewhere she can see and refer to it. Then get a timer. Treat her like a two yr old who needs to be potty trained.
Set the timer for 30 mins and make her go potty every time it goes off, no matter what she is doing. Hopefully it will interupt something she really wants to do and she realize how silly it is that she has to take time out to go to the potty constantly instead of just when she really has to go. If you haven't done this before make her a goody box. In one box put numbers 1-20. In another box buy $1 items (plastic braclets,candy, stuffed animals) every time she makes it so may hours she gets a treat from the goody box. Start with morning till luch, lunch till dinner, dinner till bed. Then expand the time. Also give her a treat when she does something else she struggles with.
Hope this helps! Good luck momma.

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by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 6:13 PM

Sorry,no advice.But best wishes on this.

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Ya, we were doing the sending her to the bathroom every 20 minutes. Then she stopped peeing her pants. Yestarday was the first time she pooped them. So ya, I was back to making her go the the bathroom every 20 minutes. As for rewards, it is based off a day. If she makes its all day with no problems them she gets praised and we talk with her about how good it feels to do the right thing, she then gets to color or do a special activity. We dont like doing monatary items  because then she will misbehave just to behave and get the gifts, she's done that in the past.  As for the diagnoses, the ADHD was by the Chicago Childrens Hospital. We have a huge report that goes along with that. This is also the plave to mention Aspergers. The bi-polar was done by her phyciatric doctor she is currently at.

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 6:30 PM

I have been around aspergers and the pooping herself is more then likely that. The behavior issues can be the aspergers, adhd, or bi polar. The behavior can also be all combined. You should be able to go with the child to dr appoint or psychiatric appoint so that they can explain all of your child's health to you. If you aren't told anything yet then you need to see a judge or lawyer about the dr.s explaining things to you. There shouldn't be any reason they won't or can't include information to you on your own child's health. With the asperger you will have to take the child to the bathroom often even if they don't say they need to go so no accidents. Also for the asperger of the behavior you need to make sure that you plan things and talk things out with the child. I would try to do a lot of the same things when you have the child because they thrive in consistency and calm environments. I wish you luck and hope that they can tell you more about what your child needs.

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 7:03 PM
I agree with suziq on the consistancy. Something as little as picking her up on a diffrent day this week then last week can cause issues. Unfortunetly children with ADHD have a very difficult time behaving all day long. Also once they make that mistake and don't get there reward they won't behave for the rest of the day because in their eyes their is no longer a reason too. However i do understand the misbehaving to behave later to get the treat. Write down and add pictures for what is expected of her. Let her check things off the list so she can see all the good things she's doing. Refer to it and praise her often when she does do something right. Adhd kids thrive on attention, good or bad and they need it so much more then your average child. Wish I had more for you.

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