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Ange71727 01-16-2017 10:01 PM

New development - thoughts please
 
I want to share a new detail in my case. Here is the backstory:
My son has ADHD although has not been formally diagnosed. A formal psycho-educational assessment is currently being done. A Pediatrician recommended medication back in 2014 and my son took this medication for 2 full years with much improved results in his school progress and confidence. It was noticed by myself, dad and step-dad that it started affecting his appetite, such that it was preventing proper weight gain. I discussed taking him off the medication in the summer of 2016 and dad agreed. Dad is generally opposed to the medication (although consented for him to be on it for 2 full school years). After discussion with him, and feeling that maybe we could give it a go without the medication this school year, his dad and I agreed to try that. It didn't take long (November-ish) before the teachers started mentioning focus issues again. I consulted with the pediatrician (dad came too) and he agreed it was best to try a trial run of a new medication - one that would possibly have reduced side effects (appetite being the biggest concern). My son was on it for 2 weeks at a low dose and then 1 week at a slight increase, as not much change was noted after the first 2 weeks. After the 1st week on the increased dose, I received a call from the pediatrician to tell me that he wanted to recommend my son stop taking the meds. He further explained that my ex had called him complaining that it was affecting his appetite on the INCREASED dose so he wanted him removed from it altogether. The kicker is, my ex didn't see him ONCE on the schedule during the week of the increased dose, making this a blatant lie to the doctor! He successfully got the medication stopped because the doctor of course took what my ex said at face value (why would he assume it wasn't true, right?).
Meanwhile, ex's argument was that he wanted to wait until the results of the psycho-educational assessment were in to decide whether to medicate or not (even though he'd been ok with it for 2 years before). This will be months from now I am told by the psychologist. The doctor wrote me an email saying that he would recommend continuing the trial run of the medication if the wait time was going to be long for the assessment results (it is); however, my ex will not medicate at his house now that he got his recommendation based on the false claim.
My sense of it is that it's a power/control thing. He's taking charge of this but at the expense of his kid.
Question is: is this something a judge will see is not in the child's best interests? I am really upset about the fact that my kid is now struggling. I see his confidence fading. I may be paranoid but part of me wonders if my ex would be happy to see poor marks because the "kid is not thriving" observation could help his case. I sincerely hope this is not the case - sickening if it is.
I understand that this isn't "abuse" - the only criteria some of you think should prevent a 50/50 arrangement. Just wondering how serious a judge would consider this, because I consider it pretty serious.
Please no debating about medicating children or not...just advice on this in relation to a potential court case.


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arabian 01-16-2017 10:24 PM

This must be extremely concerning for you. I would recommend that you contact your ex and arrange a meeting with the doctor to JOINTLY discuss your concerns. The doctor can then make his final recommendations. Both you and your ex should request the doctor's report in writing. Then the two of you can can consider getting a second opinion (I would recommend that you discuss getting a second opinion with your ex prior to meeting with the doctor. That way you are both on the same page). Emphasize to yourself and your ex that everything should be decided with the 'best interest' of your son. Try to get an agreement from your ex that you both will do everything possible to deal effectively with each other on this matter.

Ask your ex for his opinion on how the two of you should work together to come to agreement on current and future issues (such as this) for your son.

I hate to say it but I kinda echo your ex's concern that your son is being medicated without a formal diagnosis. Ask the doctor what his "working diagnosis" is with relation to the prescription.

You might want to take the same approach with regards to your son's school. It might be enlightening for the father to have the same information that you have regarding son's academics.

Either way you look at it (50/50/80/20/70/30) the two of you are both parents of the boy.

arabian 01-16-2017 10:37 PM

I have added some additional comments to my post above.

Ange71727 01-16-2017 10:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by arabian (Post 216529)
I have added some additional comments to my post above.



Thanks for your advice Arabian.
Yes, I know it is weird to medicate without psychologist diagnosis but the pediatrician had us do questionnaires and considered the observations of the involved teachers to be the deciding factor. Back then, I had wanted to get him tested but couldn't afford on my own. I went as far as getting a quote which my ex said was too high for him - even to split with me (they're pretty expensive). The testing was put off but he agreed, on the pediatrician's recommendation, that we try the meds. It was extremely helpful to my son, all parties agree.
The tides have turned now that his girlfriend has insurance coverage. My issue is that he is preventing my son from trying out the recommended trial run of this new drug, to see if it can benefit him. He is mad and is trying to control things. It sucks for my son who is noticeably struggling. If the meds have been proven to help him in the past, diagnosis or not, it would be in his best interests to give it a try, in my estimation. I'm just very discouraged. I know your suggestions are good in theory.... I will try to reiterate my thoughts to him I guess.


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arabian 01-16-2017 11:29 PM

Why is the child medicated without a diagnosis? You started out your post about wanting information for court. Well this is a biggie IMO.

Sometimes our children are not succeeding in school... they are distracted... they have hormonal changes which can have an effect on academic testing. Not a big deal in the large picture considering how long a person is in school. Kids also go through a rebellious stage and those teenage years are really, really difficult for many families.
'
You say your son is "struggling" - what specifically is the problem? Focus, irritation, loss of interest? Those are pretty normal things for teenagers. Loss of appetite and weight loss are a physiological issue and can be directly correlated to medication.

It seems to me that you and your ex need to get on the same page with regards to addressing the issue. This is not related at all to the balance of custody, rather a parenting thing. This has no reflection on the parenting. I think your ex very well might have valid concerns. Too often people are "labelled" has suffering from something without valid, corroborative testing... a doctor's easy way out... a parent's excuse for a child with behavioral issues.... indication for a requirement for tutors. You name it, there exists a plethora of rationale for medication.

Yes you very well may be correct in thinking your son needs to be on a trial for a new drug. However, without a formal diagnosis I would be hesitant to proceed.

What, pray tell, is the problem anyhow?

Rioe 01-16-2017 11:34 PM

To me, the biggest problem is that this man LIES to the doctor about his child's health in order to get the results he wants.

I'm not sure how to combat that without putting the doctor in the middle of things, but going there for your own appointment and presenting your own observations of the child, as the parent who sees the child the most besides a teacher, seems like a good idea.

arabian 01-16-2017 11:49 PM

my son was lazy and non-motivated in school. I spent $$ big bucks on private psychological testing. I needed an excuse... he wasn't the brain-child that I was certain his school psychological tests indicated he should be. Also, I was certain that my son was special (he absolutely is!) and there must be an answer why he wasn't at the top of his class (in fact he was borderline failing). After all, I scored high on IQ testing so why didn't he? I guess it must have been my ex's fault (yeah right).

Sure I could have had him labelled as "learning disabled" or "ADHD" and had Ritalin prescribed (basically this is a name for "speed"). Fortunately for my son, I am half-assed intelligent enough to know this sort of pharmacotherapy is a joke. Interestingly, my son has always been underweight. I think he merely has the same metabolism as his father.

My rant is to parents who naively think that medication is an answer to normal, typical growing of children into human beings. If your kid is out-of-control when a child and laboratory testing exhibit normal results then that's it - your kid is normal (perhaps disappointing to you academically or behaviorally) but the kid is... NORMAL. It makes no sense to me to try to alter a child's chemistry, particularly in the absence of a specific diagnosis rendered by a physician.

arabian 01-16-2017 11:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rioe (Post 216532)
To me, the biggest problem is that this man LIES to the doctor about his child's health in order to get the results he wants.

I'm not sure how to combat that without putting the doctor in the middle of things, but going there for your own appointment and presenting your own observations of the child, as the parent who sees the child the most besides a teacher, seems like a good idea.

Nothing wrong with putting the doctor in the middle of things.

If someone is prescribing medication I'd damn well want to know what the diagnosis is. This could very well be the basis of the father's concern/move to all of a sudden want 50/50 custody - he could possibly be suspicious of the fact his son is receiving medication for something without a diagnosis. I'd be upset if I were the father. Therefore, would it not be logical to assuage the father's concerns and simply get the answers from the doctor and/or so-called professionals who have convinced the mother that the son is requiring medication? To me, it is logical that the first step is in meeting with the doctor.

trinton 01-16-2017 11:52 PM

I thought the children were happy and well adjusted for the past 8 years? Sounds like he's got a very significant material change under his belt. This was not forsean when the order was made.

As per your concern, Can you prove he lied to doctor about medication not going well? Can you prove he didn't have access and couldn't have observed the child when he was on medication? If the child was losing weight on medication and dad noticed and called doctor then thats the end of that. The medication didn't work well for the child.

The child is clearly not thriving under the current regime.

That's my opinion court wise.

Friendly wise, you have to get your anxieties and paranoia under control. It's normal to feel anxiety when dealing with child custody access. We've all experienced it.

Ps. You should get the doctors clinical notes.

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arabian 01-17-2017 12:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by trinton (Post 216535)
I thought the children were happy and well adjusted for the past 8 years? Sounds like he's got a very significant material change under his belt. This was not forsean when the order was made.

As per your concern, Can you prove he lied to doctor about medication not going well? Can you prove he didn't have access and couldn't have observed the child when he was on medication? If the child was losing weight on medication and dad noticed and called doctor then thats the end of that. The medication didn't work well for the child.

The child is clearly not thriving under the current regime.

That's my opinion court wise.

Friendly wise, you have to get your anxieties and paranoia under control. It's normal to feel anxiety when dealing with child custody access. We've all experienced it.

Ps. You should get the doctors clinical notes.

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Before heading into a confrontation stage I think it would be logical for the parents to simply meet with the doctor and ask for more information. As the mother has had custody for many years she very well may not have felt the need to enlighten the father with all of her concerns.

sounds to me like the mother is doing everything she can do to do things right and the father's recent action (retaining a lawyer and receiving a letter from the lawyer) has made her paranoid. She is now simply trying to review everything in her mind... lots of what haves/could haves/should haves going through her mind. this must not be pleasant for her.


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