First Diagnosis of ADHD/ODD
This was my first question to my son’s doctor regarding my his behavior. I was frantically waiting to see his pediatrician for another ear infection. Hence, I was exhausted from being up all night with him crying from pain and fever. Upon our arrival, he refused to get out of his car seat. Nothing worked, from bribery, niceness nor persuasion. Eventually, I got mad. My son would not budge out of that seat and he was screaming bloody murder. Yes, I was embarrassed for people to be witnessing a mom that couldn’t control her child. Just wanting him to be quiet and get him inside to the office, he refused to move. Frustrated, I had to pull him from the seat and carry him over my shoulder with him kicking and screaming, into the office. During this visit is the first time I would hear the words of ADHD/ODD.
Please Stop Staring At Us
We are met with an entire waiting room of people staring at us. You can see the look on their faces: Why can’t she shut him up? They don’t keep me waiting in the waiting room long before we were taken back to a waiting room. When the doctor walks in, I am frustrated and in tears. Explaining to the doctor what happened in the car, waiting room and and behaviors at home, for the first time I hear the diagnosis of “Oppositional Defiant Disorder and ADHD” .
The doctor mentions medication, but not without an evaluation from a psychologist. In that moment I want her to give him something to make this stop – I can’t take it anymore. He hits me, spits on me, screams at me, has meltdowns and he is only four. I already feel like a failure as a parent. We are doing all of the “correct” parenting techniques and have taken parenting classes. The search begins and we are in therapy for years with medication adjustments.
Since mental illness runs in my family, I was trying not to medicate my child. As time went on, there are so many incidents with him and it became a matter of safety. No matter how good a parent you are, you can’t be there 100% of the time. Kids have unbounded energy, but the ADHD/ODD child is like a child on speed and can’t be caught all the time. Our son would run out in parking lots ahead of us, in grocery stores, and sometimes ran into people that were using a cane.
The Decision To Medicate
The final straw was when we were visiting family for a get together. I was in the other room enjoying a few minutes of not having to watch him when family members informed me that our son had done two things that alarmed me that day. He became intrigued from the fire was in the fire pit. Our son was leaning his face down toward the fire to feel the heat. There was also a brick wall that he had jumped off for fun. It was then I knew something had to be done or he was going to get seriously injured.
Swallowing my “pride” of my past family history and not wanting him to take medicine, I needed to not look at this as a failure. We needed to do what we felt was right and also do what was best for our child to get help.
Did you decide to put your son on medication? What was the turning point for you? I would love to hear your story.