Friday, November 28, 2014

Charlotte's ODD Web?

The picture of bouncing wildness has shifted in the past year to one of defiance and opposition. Every single (and I truly mean EVERY) request of ours seems to hit a a barricade of willfulness. We are slyly distracted away from the point at hand through a lengthy exchange of words and wills. Our son no longer presents many symptoms of ADHD but strong ODD or rather, Oppositional Defiance Disorder. From what I've read, these behavior labels regularly go hand in hand.

So here's the deal. Just when I feel we've begun to get a hold on the ADHD, it all shifts to a completely new bunch of stuff. I'm not humored by this one bit but that's extreme parenting for you. Should my blog title be Charlotte's ODD Web instead? Or maybe I should leave the title alone so those readers who are dealing with ADHD can transition into this ODD thing with me?

Some days I'm so frustrated with figuring out this behavior and what I can do about it. That's a lie. Most days. I'm sad and overwhelmed. For him. For us. For his teachers. It's hard and painful. He hates being told "no." He's angry at even his shadow. He rarely stays respectful and quiet for longer than 15 minutes unless in front of a screen... Which in our home is rare and earned.

More rules? Stiffer consequences? No privileges? Rewards and incentives? Teen boot camp? Argggg. I just shake my head while I begin another journey. A trek through piles of book titles, methods and blogs. Why didn't I start this a year ago when it all became more intense? Maybe because I was in denial but more likely because I thought it would end like it began.....suddenly.

I love my 14 yr old Bobby. I don't like this path and I probably hate the behavior. It raises my blood pressure, quickens my pulse and takes me through a path of tears. When will our home just be calm and just what is "normal?"  ADHD to ODD - I'm on this journey of labels determined to understand this second one. For myself but even more for him.

I have learned a couple things already... It takes strong strategies to deal with ODD in our parenting. Firmness with love, consistency and a willingness to help these kids become successful at thinking about reasons for doing things and consequences. We can't argue. We state facts. We can NOT get sidetracked by their sly excuses and blaming. These kids need to be trained carefully to engage with and respect adults and kids. Important discussions must be put aside if the child is hostile, but not aside for good. We need to listen and praise successes they make in their growth. I'm learning. I'm reading a lot. More later. Stay tuned......

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My 8 year old son also has ADHD and ODD, I find the ODD much harder to handle. I'm about to have my 4th boy and I suspect all of them in one form or the other will have ADHD. It's totally normal for me since I had it growing up and it's been very helpful for me to have been in their shoes and understand firsthand what they are feeling and that limitations do exist. I find myself on a never ending treadmill of learning about ADHD and separating the facts from the opinions. It's not an easy road but Anything worth doing never is :) <3