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Old 01-29-2016, 11:13 AM
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Default Roller coaster ride, seeking support.

Hi all, hope you are all well!

I'm coming here to receive support and connect with parents that might have been through similar situations.

As the title states, this whole week has been the worst roller coaster ride. There is a multitude of problems that have been ongoing and seem to have exploded this week.

For factual purpose and to give you an idea of the multi dimensional problems, here's some back ground.

-My S6 was diagnosed with ADHD in November by a psychologist.
I've since been working profusely with the school and professionals involved to help S6 in the class room since S6 has not only had difficulties academically, there have been a number of behavioral challenges.
May I add that prior to the diagnosis, I had to go to court and have my ex consent to having S6 seen by the psychologist. The psychologist revealed that both S6's teachers and I were on the same page with regards to difficulties, but ex was not. After the diagnosis, both my ex and I had a meeting with teachers and resource teachers on the subject of a new reading/writing program that S6 could benefit from. Again, ex stated he was baffled that S6 was going through these trials and tribulations as he admits none of this is an issue in his home.

-I began to research possible strategies to implement to further help my son with his difficulties. We started administering natural supplements for concentration (no changes in two months of intake) I've changed S6 to a cleaner diet and have him exercise daily. Since last year I've retained a tutor for S6 (once a week/ 40minutes) I've offered multiple services to ex such as private assessor for a new parenting plan, psychotherapist/nutritionist services, websites as well as keep him informed of teachers weekly reports via email. Please take note that our separation is high conflict, we communicate via Our Family Wizard solely and we have a 50/50 joint legal custody.

-January came around and S6 has started his new program but challenges have multiplied as well as the aggressiveness and defiant behavior. Being in close contact with teachers, A.Es., principal, I've had discussions on other avenues to take at this point as youth completely refuses to do any school work, becomes violent with other kids (last incident yesterday, S6 was waiting for his bus to head home and hit another child on the head with a mini hockey stick).

-This past week (S6 is with his father) was incredibly difficult for S6 as he was asked to do work, refused, continued to disturb others in the class and was asked to leave with the assistant teacher which in turn sent him into an anger fueled tantrum. I was called to the school because the assistant didn't feel comfortable putting S6 on the bus, I asked if she had called S's father and she stated that she would be. I offered to come to school to help S6 calm down until his father came to pick him up and she agreed. At that point he was ramsaking her office.

-I arrived at school, S6 was in her office, sitting quietly, objects all over the floor, as well as his winter wear. Concerned, I asked what happened, S6 started crying and crawled on top of me as I sat next to him. I spoke briefly with S6 and the assistant teacher and asked S6 to pick up the mess in the office. At that time S6's father's girlfriend showed up to pick S6 up. (I was disappointed the father didnt show up as this could have been an opportunity to show our son that we are a team.) S6 and the girlfriend left together to go clean the mess on his desk S6 had left in the classroom. S6 then came back and clinged onto my leg, I hugged him and reasured him that everything was going to be ok, mid sentence, girlfriend stated they had to leave as she had to go back to work. (both her and ex operate a tattoo/barber shop in the same physical spot). The T.A. explained that S6 was in complete tantrum mode, kicking and pushing everything in his grasp/way. He proceeded to do the spaghetti noodle on the floor and she pushed him in direction of her office, past the reception area and tried to do it quickly as she didn't want other kids to see S6 that way. She explained that they have tried to remove the audience and have all the other students leave the class but this strategy had not worked out.

-I received a txt from ex stating he was furious and wanted to know what S6 had told me but explained that he would be reaching out on OFW later.

-Later that night I received this message (names have been changed)
Just wanna touch base on what happened today and would like to hear what S6 revealed to you of the incident at the end of the day at school. I'd don't know what he mentioned to you and what he explained to you of the situation but S6 mentioned to me that teacher assistant while alone with S6 took her hand and forced S6 to sit down on the chair using his face to do so and I mean he was scared talking about it telling me that when she took him inside he was being stubborn and she did that. He discussed how he felt her squeeze with her fingers .Now I don't know what to make of this because I don't know what he told you when you arrived there first and I think she was there as well so I didn't want to jump the gun so I figured I'd contact you first before approaching the school and the teacher assistant. So let me know thanks

-I replied swiftly stating everything I had seen, the discussions with T.A. and waited for what I thought would be another reply with fuller details and how we would deal with this. I received no reply to my message (he actually didn't view it for two more days). Instinctively, my concerns grew for my son and I didnt feel like waiting around with this type of matter on my hands.

-The next morning I headed to school early and requested to speak with the Principal on the allegations. I also requested to speak with S6 in private, to which he agreed. He explained that the teacher assistant had sent him a report on her intervention and that further discussion on the matter was scheduled for later that day. During this impromptu meeting, I saw ex's truck through the window, pull up and ex's gf with son come to drop him off for the day. Ex was absent. I sent a OFW message to ex to let him know that I had discussed things with the principal, requested the intervention report and also touched base with S6. Ex was livid.

-He replied with this:
it's call Co-parenting and once again you take it upon yourself to approached a situation that happened to are son as a lie or whatever your thinking. When I mentioned to S6 if he mentioned to you what happened he said no. Now clearly you have your own agenda at hand that has your interests at heart but that doesn't surprise me there is also other information that you clearly don't care about that will be presented to principal my self I guess now . Also for future reference when something happens to our son for his best interest we should share the information of the situation and decide together what the next steps may be instead you take it upon your self do go behind my back and present your so very small story of what you know which is most likely because you feared why S6 didn't consult you at all right after it happened but you didn't even bother to inform me i was hoping we could communicate about the matter but what was I thinking to consider such a concept after all you forced this program
on are Co-parenting so if you have any other question I'm sure you'll be personally going to school each morning so you could find out for yourself thanks

-Now three days after the events took place, ex had not, as per principal, communicated with him. I asked the principal that he touch base with ex and review the report with him directly.



What a cluster of craziness. My knees are weak from writing it all. This is by far the worst thing Ive ever dealt with, that is, of my son living no success at school, things being difficult with behaviors, the allegations, the ex's reaction and admitting that maybe I should of waited for more info prior to going to school.

To add to the mix, I've been considering medication for S6, I've always maintained that I would not medicate and try other steps prior but see no light at the end of this tunnel. I just want S6 to have 1 good day at school and that becomes a new dilemma as father will not support this idea.

I guess I'm looking for your input, if you've been in a similar situation, can relate to any of the themes in my post, please, please, please, shed YOUR light.

Feeling....Helpless!
Thank you.
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Old 01-29-2016, 12:59 PM
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I don't envy your situation. I'm sure you are trying to do everything you can to resolve the situation.

Your son is only 6 years old. When does he have time to just be a kid? Your well-meaning actions (psychologist, diet change) have resulted in your son simply objecting to all the changes in his life?

Look at things from the outside, it appears that your son has received lots and lots of attention for his behaviour. I think you have to take a half-step back and not jump in every time there is a problem at the school. I'm sure the school deals with temper tantrums with other children. Your son has figured out - poor behaviour = mummy comes running.

I'd try to think of fun activities to do with your son which requires a good dose of physical activity and less time with psychologists and health food fanatics. Kids eat big Mac's and fries frequently and they turn out just fine.

I believe your son is merely pushing your buttons. Clever boy!
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Old 01-29-2016, 01:20 PM
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I can help you. I'm on lunch at work right now but I understand your situation very well. To begin, Arabian has a very good point. Every behavior has a function, usually 2 come to mind -- 1. Attention ; 2. Escape/Avoidance. I really do hope your TA's are showing you ABC data (Antecedent, Behavior, Consequence). Yo want to know the Antecedent's (Triggers: What occurred just prior to the tantrums). This will assist greatly n the functional analysis and intervention plan moving forward.

Be VERY careful about showing up at school when tantrums occur. This will in fact reinforce the negative behavior. The child will tantrum just to be picked up. You don't want to get in to that pattern. I deal with about 6-7 tantrums/day at my school and have never once called the parents.

Regarding the TA's physical approach, know your rights as a parent. NO staff are allowed to place their hands on your child. There is a "Hands-Off" policy at the school. Unless there is real danger (Blood/Death/etc)...the school board will never back an employee. I've actually followed children down the road when they ran away from school, ensuring their safety (guiding with my had on their back pack).

I'd like to help you out with the ADHD piece and ensure that the school has the proper supports in place. Things like "Therabands on desks" (students can kick), "earphones" (to drown out distraction), frequent body breaks, ... perhaps even medication (Concerta is the best as it lasts all day from morning and no med administration is needed at school).

Either way ... I feel for you and could certainly be of some assistance.

I'm glad a qualified psychologist is speaking to your child .. not sure what dad's issue is about that, but he should have none (as long as it's not a witness of abuse counselor.. ).

Things will get better if the right things are put in place. Chin up, hold your head high.

LF32
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Old 01-29-2016, 01:36 PM
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Excellent post LF32 - good to have a "pro" to offer advice for this sort of thing on the forum. I believe this is your area of expertise.

To offer another opinion (unqualified) - I feel parents sometimes are looking for excuses for their children's behaviour. Many years ago parents with out-of-control children rushed to get their kids diagnosed with something.... anything... Schools gladly went along with this as schools get additional funding for children who have been diagnosed as having a "learning disability." Not a bad thing as additional funding meant schools could then afford to hire extra TAs. My question would be - how does one differentiate between a child with legitimate learning disability from child who simply is reacting to parent's divorce and/or a child who simply doesn't like to conform to rules? Often times it is pretty easy to pick out the kids who didn't attend preschool from other children simply because child didn't know how to socialize with other children and/or had difficulty adjusting to environment with rules.

Interesting topic.

(I hope I'm not offending the poster... I do feel for your situation and I'm sure you are a loving and caring mother and you have a wonderful, smart child).
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