HELP.

Dec. 1st, 2012 02:59 pm
psyche29: A brown eye with rainbow eyeliner all around it (harder to breathe)
[personal profile] psyche29
Okay, so.

I am feeling stupid and useless and sheepish and embarrassed about this. I shouldn't, it's not my fault, it's not his fault, blah blah blah, but--.

Does anybody have any knowledge or suggestions or experience or opinions with getting a child tested for possible mental or emotional disorders?

I am--. I don't even know how to explain. I DON'T UNDERSTAND THIS.

Boychild is fourteen years old, but there is so very little he does that makes me think he is developing normally. Hubby is finally starting to see my point, and I just. I don't know what to do. Do I take him to his regular doctor first? It's not physical, but does that matter? I am just at a loss.

This kid cannot ever answer a question with more than "I don't know" or "Meh" and a shrug. When we ask him what he's thinking, he is at a loss for words and cannot tell us. He hates reading, sincerely believes we are punishing him when we expect him to do so, but swears up one side and down the other that reading is not hard for him. He cannot understand vocabulary that I know eight-year-olds can grasp (he had to ask today what "extra-mild" meant!!!!), and his social skills are on par with kindergarteners.

I love that he is a fairly happy kid, but he is FOURTEEN, not six!! I love that he is not embarrassed to be seen with us and that he is affectionate and loving, but he thinks it is appropriate to group hug in the middle of a grocery store aisle and giggles like a lunatic when we try to inform him seriously that now is not the time. Which, of course, makes me feel like a slug. BUT FOURTEEN!!!

He repeatedly tells the same jokes over and over again, long after everyone is sick and tired of hearing them, and never grasps that no one is laughing anymore. Then he gets upset when someone tells him it's not funny anymore and says that no one ever thinks he's funny! I don't get it!

We still have to tell him - every single morning - that he must put on deodorant. He has needed to do so since he was nine. Should he not be doing it on his own by now? We have to remind him, and then he does it extremely grudgingly. He likes showers, but has never once taken one of his own volition. We have to tell him to do so, and he sighs like we're expecting him to bring us the moon. He seems perfectly happy being filthy. How is that even remotely normal for a teenage boy?

He continues to do things we've repeatedly asked him not to do, and laughs like it's hilarious when we get upset that he's doing it again.

I feel so angry with him all the time, and I hate it so much. But I feel that this goes so far beyond my own impatience. There is something so very, very wrong, and I don't know where to start looking for help. Looking at the criteria list for ADD and ADHD, I think that he doesn't hit the ADHD requirements, but he does hit every. single. item. on the ADD list, but I just don't think that explains everything.

So. Please. Tell me your thoughts. Tell me your experiences if applicable, and your ideas and suggestions. I am starting to think that we must be unfit parents. I'm not looking for reassurance or accolades or anything like that, just-. I am so not equipped for this. Help us. Please. If he needs help, I want to get it for him. I just don't know how.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-01 10:56 pm (UTC)
pinesandmaples: A bunch of green coconuts in the tree, viewed from the bottom. (theme: peek up)
From: [personal profile] pinesandmaples
My parents had one of my brothers tested for ADD, ADHD, and Autism Spectrum stuff. They called the school and asked for a recommendation for an outside tester. I think a psychiatrist can also make such a recommendation.

As an adult, my partner and I have both been tested for the Autism Spectrum; and we used a psychiatrist. Someone who focuses on your suspected issues might be a good place to start. When you go to the first appointment, tell the doctor that you want a diagnosis to help make your kid's life better. Continue to announce that you want testing, not "behavior management." Sometimes, shrinks can be difficult, especially in more rural areas. It can be annoying and frustrating, but the outcome is so good. The testing will be worthwhile because it will improve your kiddo's quality of life. And yours, too.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-07 07:03 pm (UTC)
pinesandmaples: A picture of freckles, in the shape of a heart.  (love: freckles)
From: [personal profile] pinesandmaples
In this context, behavioral management doesn't mean "able to interact with and be a good parent." It means "learn new techniques for coping with the mental health issues that are present and tackle the problems on the table with life-style changes instead of medication." The way I've heard it explained using diabetes: there is a certain category of diabetes that responds to medication OR diet/exercise/life-style modification equally so the person can choose one or the other path without making a bad choice. And with some mental health concerns, managing with new techniques instead of medication is possible and equally effective.

My parents chose the behavioral management option for my brother because he was an athlete, and they were concerned that the medication would disqualify him from playing high school sports because it tends to create false positives on drug tests. He responded well, and that was the right choice for him. This story is told not to be an object lesson to you because I know your kid has different needs, and I trust that you'll find one that works just right for him, too.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-02 12:59 am (UTC)
zarhooie: Girl on a blueberry bramble looking happy. Text: Kat (Default)
From: [personal profile] zarhooie
Your primary care doc should be able to get you a referral, or the school can.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-02 04:06 am (UTC)
archersangel: (no advice)
From: [personal profile] archersangel
i agree with the above comments. try his doctor & his school for referrals or recommendations. i don't know if there's any kind of counseling center type thing in your area, you could try them.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-02 08:22 am (UTC)
simply: (Default)
From: [personal profile] simply
Aw, hugs. That's so tough.

Have you looked into any Asperger's behaviour lists/tests? I work with a little boy with Asperger's, and some of your son's behaviours sound quite similar.

But definitely your family doctor will be able to give you a referral to see someone more specifically trained to diagonose these kinds of challenges.

(no subject)

Date: 2012-12-03 12:39 am (UTC)
kowe: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kowe
It actually sounds more like autism to me. My brother-in-law has autism and those behaviors you're describing sound a lot like him. Autism and Asperger's have similar behaviors also, so as a commenter above me stated, check that out too.

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