Life with Fast Boy

The Challenges of Raising Our ADHD Son

School and ADHD Medication Update

Posted by One Tired Mama on October 21, 2007

School has been in session for a while now and the Concerta that we put Fast Boy on is obviously helping.  Between those two things, I haven’t felt the need to post here as often.  (Thank goodness!) 

Fast Boy’s behavior at school has definitely improved.  It’s still a far cry from what I or his teachers would consider “normal” eight year old behavior, but I have to be grateful for any positive changes.  His reports from school have gone from many “reds” down to a few “yellows” and mostly “greens”.  So far this year, there has been some pushing and biting, but no hitting people across the face with sticks or sending them to the doctor for potential broken noses.  There has been some speaking out of turn in class and some running in the hallways, but no flat-out disobedience or rages in the classroom.   Gee… While I’m typing this, it almost does sound like normal eight year old boy behavior.  😉

My concerns about medication side effects are still there though.  He appears to be sleeping okay for now, but it is obvious that his appetite and weight have decreased.  I haven’t noticed any other changes. 

I guess all is okay.

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The ADHD Medication Debate

Posted by One Tired Mama on September 4, 2007

I don’t need a formal ADHD medication debate.  The debate exists enough right here in my own head.  My son went to school today on Concerta.  I hate it!  I absolutely hate it!

When Fast Boy was three years old, I asked the doctor to prescribe something for him.  Either he was going on medication… or I was.  The doctor argued, but I insisted.  (Things have changed since then.)  After the worst rages I’ve ever seen from a child that size, he was taken off of Adderral two weeks later.  No one should be afraid of their three year old.

It was a good two years later that we tried again.  He was in Kindergarten and disrupting the entire class.  We started him on Ritalin.   It helped.  Some.   Eventually we switched to Concerta with a Ritalin “chaser” to try and keep him calm after the school bus dropped him off in the afternoon. 

Sometime last year, we decided to decrease his meds and gradually take him off.  There are so many reasons why.  He wasn’t growing like we thought he should.  He wasn’t eating like we thought he should.  He had a hard time sleeping at night.  He was still getting into trouble any way.  At one point he actually told me that he had “people dancing in his head”.   (They danced “quieter” when his medication was decreased.)  The co-payments were more than we could afford.  The trips back and forth to the doctor’s office every month to pick up the script for his “controlled substance” were getting old at a fast pace.  Add to that my own personal issues, side effects and withdrawal problems from my former anti-depressant days and I just didn’t think the medication was worth it.  We were also having some success with chiropractic treatment (more on that in another post) and I was feeling confident we could do this on our own.   

On the last day of school last June, we took Fast Boy completely off his medication.   You’ve read how well that turned out.  Okay, honestly, you’ve read the bad parts of how that turned out.  What I haven’t told you yet is that I actually got to see MY son this summer.  The good, the bad and the ugly maybe, but the good was there.  He was more affectionate that he has been in years.  I missed that little boy despite all the bad behavior that came with him.

Two days into school… Two… the notes started coming home.  The services we got “help” from over the summer didn’t give us the skills we had hoped for in coping with Fast Boy’s issues.  They certainly weren’t going to help the school.  

I felt like I had no choice.   No matter how much we want him off medication, none of us can function without it.  At least not with some help from something else.  So, $55 out of pocket and a few pills later, Fast Boy is back on Concerta.  I am hopeful that the new therapist I found will be able to help with some behavior modification and we can take him off the drugs again soon.  Our first appointment is this week.  Maybe I have only lost this battle.  Maybe I can still win the war.

Posted in ADHD Medication | 3 Comments »

Poop!

Posted by One Tired Mama on August 31, 2007

Literally.  Smeared all over the bathroom cabinets next to the toilet.  How?  He “stuck his hand in his butt and wiped it.”  Why?  Because he “felt like it.” 

After we supervised the clean-up of poop on the bathroom cabinets, we had him clean the urine off of the floor and sent him to bed.

In case you have forgotten… Which he apparently has… He’s EIGHT!

Posted in Impulsivity, Shenanigans | 3 Comments »

Scared…

Posted by One Tired Mama on August 10, 2007

Not sure where to start with this one, I guess I’ll start at the beginning….

A couple of weeks ago, The Boss Man had left our shed unlocked.  I knew Fast Boy had been in there and reminded my husband quite harshly about how much trouble could come from an unlocked shed.  I was right.  The Boss Man promptly locked the shed and kept it locked from then on, but what we didn’t know was that Fast Boy and Princess had hid their previous finds.

When Fast Boy entered our house yesterday afternoon I was immediately reminded of the chainsaw oil smell from a few weeks ago.  This was a little different.  This was Tiki Torch fuel.  And it covered the lower half of my son.  He had taken the container out of its hiding spot under the shed and punctured  a hole in it to open it when he couldn’t figure out the safety lid.  He said that he bit it open with his teeth.

He had poured the fuel on the neighbor’s grass and bushes. (Different neighbor from the water slide incident.)  What I also found at the scene of the crime was a lighter that he had stolen from the neighbors porch.  I shudder thinking about what could have happened if he had actually been able to light it.

I was at my computer working just like the last time.  It wasn’t more than 30 minutes.  I thought they were just in the back yard playing.  Just like the last time.  I try to reassure myself that it isn’t my fault, that I can’t be on top of them 24/7, but when stuff like this happens I am reminded that I really need to be. 

Posted in Impulsivity, Shenanigans | 3 Comments »

The Wrong Kind of Water Gun

Posted by One Tired Mama on August 8, 2007

My sense of humor is just not where it ought to be on this one.  Even though a good 36 hours has past.  I’m still shaking my head in disbelief. 

Picture the scene…  A fun day with friends swimming, sliding and playing with waterguns.  The playdate turns into a dinner invitation.  The dinner turns into a spontaneous sleep-over party.  Then it happens.

Fast Boy and Surfer Dude (his 4 year old friend) disappear into the bathroom to prepare for bed.  You can feel it coming, can’t you?  Surfer Dude shrieks and comes out of the bathroom crying.  Fast Boy peed on him! 

I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt.  He does get distracted easily and all it would have taken is one word for my son to turn away from what he was doing and lose his aim.  However, I knew immediately upon questioning that this was not the case.  The look on Fast Boy’s face told the truth that it was intentional.  The fact that Surfer Dude’s pajamas were wet all the way up to his chest was proof of it. 

What was he thinking?  His answer: “I don’t know.  I just felt like it.”  He never gave me a better answer. 

It wasn’t until I sat down to write this post that I came up with my own answer.  Just like he had invented his own water slide a few weeks ago, Fast Boy had found his own water gun. 

________________________

And simply because one of the internet marketers I work with coincidently sent me this link yesterday, I just had to add it here… Make Potty Training Fun Again.  (Maybe they should add in a “water gun” section?)

Posted in Impulsivity, Shenanigans | 1 Comment »