Wednesday, July 11, 2007

LONG POST AHEAD

Big things are a-happenin' on the home front. I haven't posted about this because, well, it's not running related. But as raising good kids is my main focus in life, I feel like it needs to be put out there. There's also the potential that someone may be able to offer advice or shed some light on this.

Anybody that knows me, knows that I will research the hell out of something until I am prepared. When The Dude needed glasses, I spent hours on the computer making sure that the doctor we took him to was qualified, that the diagnosis is consistent with the symptoms, what the procedure will be to get his eyes tested, what to expect after the exam, tips on getting him to wear his glasses, and the all-important (if very unlikely) worst case scenario.

When we moved to OH, we put him in a daycare that was close to my work and that had people in it that seemed to care very much for the children. They also had a curriculum that would help him transition well into kindergarten (even if that is years away). They told us repeatedly that The Dude was unruly and not behaving well. We know that he transitions very hard, so we thought that it was just transitional things going on...testing limits in the new place, missing the old teachers, house, friends in IN, making a place in the pecking order, etc. Well, after 6 weeks to 2 months, they sat us down & said that he was not making improvements. We felt that it was because they did not do time-outs or take privileges away, which is basically the only way that they can really discipline children. So, we thought that The Dude was running all over them with no consequences for his actions.

We moved daycares to a new place that is bible-based, has extremely caring, professional staff, will do more discipline with him, and is closer to our home. Since this is yet another transition, we were very frank with them. We told them that he would have a hard time. So, it has been another 2 months, with no improvement. They have sat us down to have the same conversation - T was unruly - T didn't play well with others - T doesn't transition from one activity to another - T doesn't learn from time-outs - yadda yadda yadda. The director thought that he may have a behavioral problem like ADD/ADHD. (She offered up her own situation as she has a grown daughter with ADHD) At that point, we were offended at the notion! We thought that these people were CRAZY. There's NOTHING WRONG with our son! But, since we didn't want to take him from yet another daycare to start the process all over again, we agreed to get an appointment for a referral.

I immediately started researching online for symptoms of ADD & ADHD. I wanted to take a look at the diagnosis procedure. What could we expect at the dr office? How does The Dude fit in with these behaviors? What are the treatments? Would we be forced to put him on medication? Could we modify his behavior without medicine?

In the meantime, he has been waking up with nightmares, grinding his teeth, biting his nails and most recently started pooping in his pants. SOMETHING is wrong. THIS HAS GOT TO CHANGE.

Last night was that appointment. It was just the husband & I talking to the dr. (BTW, the doc is a pediatrician with 35 years experience in diagnosing/treating behavioral diseases.) We laid it all out there, his whole history. The dr seems to think that he may have ADD as well (but without the whole process he can't say for sure). We asked him why this didn't happen in IN - why now? (It takes 6 months of these types of behaviors before the ADD diagnosis can occur.) He said that it didn't just happen. When we were in IN & changed daycares at 18 months, he almost got kicked out of that daycare as well for being aggressive. He said that his behavior just got better enough for the daycare to pass off any of the actions he was doing as normal toddler behavior. If we changed daycares to one that has a lower child:staff ratio will it improve? The dr said the problems will almost definitely continue at whatever daycare he goes to. Unless we get a nanny that would be able to identify & communicate with him 1:1 he will have issues. He said, it is easy to classify individual situations as isolated behaviors, but if you take a broader view of them, it looks like a pattern. He said that as he gets older, if we don't identify & address the problem, the pattern will continue and get worse. The most important thing right now is to bolster his ego & self-esteem. He said that the pooping in his pants is a huge sign that he is feeling really down in the dumps about himself.

I don't want to jump the gun & say "AHA! This is the problem! This is the solution!" We have been so stressed about this lately. It's nice to at least have a course of action instead of the daily poor reports from daycare that he was hitting/pushing/kicking the kids & teachers.

One hand: relived that I am not a bad parent; relieved that we can solve this; happy we are on the track to correcting the issue; grateful that daycare is not kicking him out.

Other hand:worried that he will be labeled "bad kid"; worried that he have trouble in school; worried about medicating 3.5 year old.

Are we doing the right thing?

1 comment:

The 311 Boys Mom said...

sorry to hear about the Insurance, my oldest had leukemia & I had a PPO, NOT an HMO, but they tried often NOT to pay, "not covered" crap; in teh end I got it covered, some bills went to Collection. But its differnet, if yours says not covered the DR turns you away, cancer they can't. It does sound a little ADD, My nieces both have it & my son's friend from 1st grade was like that--they're now going into 10th & Steven (the friend) hasn't been on meds since 5th grade, his grades are better, he's laid back plays sports. NONE of which happened beofre.

Listen to your Doc, BUT ALSO listen to yourself, a mother knows.....plus, try a sport, soccer, floor hockey; I have a 3.5 yr old, during a sport session (10 weeks, with 2 weeks off in between) the 2 weeks are hell for us ~ ~ ~ too much energy to burn, the 10 weeks, not so bad. Ans we cut out pop [for him, even Sprite].

sorry so long