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Parents of ADHD Children

So many differences in ADHD kids I meet

My daughter has ADHD- NO learning disorders but HIghly Highly IMPULSIVE. She lies, she steals, she does not respect the property of anyone in the house. She cut her hair last night and caught the wrath of hell and then she went to school and cut her hair again. Mind you, she is highly intelligent ad extremely competitive. We enrolled her in softball , which she is very good at and I think it makes her feel good that she is very good at it.

I feel as though her outburst and emotional stuff is tearing the family apart, probably me more than anything as I am the stay at home parent with a pilot husband that is gone 3-4 nights a week. I am so stressed out that I feel myself pulling away from my daughter and haven’t the strenght to keep up with battling her.

I have tried all sorts of discipline, At one point in the stealing from stores saga, I got a refrigerator box and removed everything from her room and told her that she had to earn EVERYTHING back, excluding school uniforms. 

She makes zero effort to conceal the evidence that she broke rules. She litterally will put on earrings that i said she can not borrow and then come ask me how I like her outfit (with my off limits earrings)

She can go from being in the worst level of trouble to can I have ice cream? IN A MATTER OF MINUTES.

Meds- We have tried Vyvance, concerta and Focolin. Focolin as the worst it made her very aggressive and angry. She has lost way too much weight with Vyvance and we are finally seeing a neuro at All children’s and I hope to get a script for intuition.  Does anyone relate to these things or am I looking at something more than ADHD?


Well, I’m only a expert on my own child and Each kid with ADHD looks different. Impulsivity is a hallmark sign though. In fact a friend of mine was just telling me about the trouble her daughter (8yrs) has had with lying and stealing lately and all I coud think of was ADHD. i suggested to her that she perhaps start researching It based on my experience with my own child and all I’ve read.

Intuniv coud definitely be helpful. We had a big breakthrough when it came to impulsivity when we added it in for my son a year ago. He also takes Vyvanse now, but previously took Focalin. The Vyvanse / Intuniv combo is the best for him so far. His appetite definitely suffers with Vyvanse too, but maybevifbyour daughter got some Intuniv on board, you coud lower the dose of Vyvanse and not have as much of a problem with it?

Good luck!

Posted by JS on Jan 29, 2013 at 10:00am

I hear ya! What helps my son is a combo of lowner doses of vyvanse and fluoxetine in the am, and Clonadine in the am, afternoon and pm. His impulsivity is down to a manageable state, his focus at school is better and his aggression has dropped and leveled out.
Not saying none of these happen anymore but the change has been very significant for everyone, especially for him. He has had friends over, gone on outings all with success.

Posted by HV66 on Jan 29, 2013 at 10:41am

Could ODD be a possibility? My son is impulsive, but he feels bad about it not long after. He does things, and he just doesn’t know why. I thought that’s how ADHD was? Like they’re missing the ability to stop and think in the moment. Your daughter’s behaviour sounds more defiant to me.

Posted by Rai0414 on Jan 29, 2013 at 11:34am

Has she always been this way? Or is this something new that’s come on with the teen years? (You didn’t say… I’m just assuming her age.)

Posted by Rai0414 on Jan 29, 2013 at 11:35am

This doesn’t sound like just ADHD to me.  It sounds like Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD).  I would definitely write down these examples and bring them to your doctor.  50% of those with ADHD also have ODD or a conduct disorder.
-Katherine Price
Coaching Parents of Kids
with Special Needs.

Posted by KatherineADHDC on Jan 29, 2013 at 6:08pm

I’m not an expert - but from what I’ve read, it could be ODD.  Definitely worth talking to the Psychiatrist again about this.  And if yes - have the Psychiatrist recommend a therapist or social worker to help your child (and the family) through this. That way you’ll get a therapist who specializes in this type of behaviour.

Posted by staypositive on Jan 29, 2013 at 7:50pm

My personal experience, not necessarily research, is that kids with ADHD rank about third in terms of variance in their differences and how they present with the same diagnosis.
(Autism and BiPolar would be my #1 and #2.)

That is why I always try to avoid the “comparison” conversations when I find that someone has the diagnosis.

Posted by Dr. Eric on Jan 29, 2013 at 10:57pm

every kid is different of course but we just started Intuniv a week ago after being resistant for a long time to medication.  We were at a point where waiting to get through the school day without a phone call from the school was affecting every aspect of our lives it was so stressful.  Our son was also alienating himself from friends, and the school losing patience fast.  He is very impulsive and also seemed to have episodes that indicated ODD.  He had some minor side effects like being drowsy, a little cranky, and easily overwhelmed in chaotic circumstances but all in all has begun to control his impulses far better than before.  still hate the idea of relying on medication so we are also trying some other forms of therapy in hopes he will grow into it a little more over time but so far it seems to be help.  I will say before this he genuinely wanted to control his impulses (he was voluntarily reading and trying exercises to help) but we began to see he really could not overcome it without help.  So, for what it is worth- hate medicating him at all and looking towards summer to try to take him off but for now it has definitely stabilized him.

Posted by cwe_atl on Jan 30, 2013 at 7:21pm

I read a paper on the different sub-types of ADHD & which meds work best for each sub-type. It said that stimulant medication will increase impulsive behavior. Maybe you could speak to her doctor about Welbutrin because I’ve heard that helps with ADHD as well.

Posted by jrmoon6575 on Jan 30, 2013 at 7:28pm

Oh my gosh!!  It sounds like you are describing my daughter when she was growing up.  She is now 12 years old. 
She was constantly stealing from stores, etc.  Every time she did I return the item to the manager or to her friend she had a “playdate.”  It did not matter if it was yesterday or 3 months ago. I made sure she apologized and return the item.  It did not seem to deter her from repeating it.  But, I made sure she would return it.
One Manager said she would not to be able to come back if she continued this. (This did get her attention.)

  For a period of time, I could not take her to the stores any longer or playdates were limited to our house and monitored by me due to the “stealing” inpulsive issue.  (It’s exhausting!)

My daughter cut her hair as well when she was 8 and decided my collection of china dolls could use a trim as well.  I totally understand your situation!!

Eventually, the Psych recommended Intuniv which did help.  (She know longer needs to take it because she has learned “to put on her breaks” as we call it.)  She is less impulsive because she does know the consequences and wants to have friends that trust her!!

I am not a medical professional by any means. I am just a mom who has 2 children and a husband with ADHD!!

I know it must be terribly hard for you since your husband travels.  Make sure you take time for yourself and breath a lot. 

Good luck I hope this helps!

Posted by 2ADHDkids on Jan 30, 2013 at 10:54pm

I totally understand when you say you feel yourself pulling away and can’t stand the battles anymore.  Totally.  My husband too is gone 3-4 nights per week, so it is just me with my two adhd kids.  My daughter, 12, is the hardest for me to manage.  She too is very impulsive and I can relate to many of the things you wrote.  We were at our lowest point last summer.  She’s been on Focalin, since last summer, the doc added clonidine am/pm and a short lasting, fast acting booster of focalin if needed for after school/evening activities.  In addition, we’ve been seeing an awesome therapist weekly.  Between the two (meds and therapy) I’ve seen a very big change. 

One thing that the theraist pointed out, is that when my daughter gets anxious, I get anxious, which makes her anxiety/behavior worse and worse.  It’s like a spiral (kind of like a tornado small at the bottom and large at the top).  I have noticed that the battles are fewer when I’m more low key.  When I can remember to use humor instead of just ‘laying down the law’ so to speak.  it’s hard though.  Very hard indeed. 

We also try to tie things to good behavior.  Not using discipline so much, but using a reward.  I.e., if you can control your temper tonight, then tomorrow you can ‘have something special’.  It may be in the beginning the reward will have to be in the same moment, today vs tomorrow.  More immediate I mean. 

I do feel your pain and know exactly how you are feeling.  Keep up the great work.  I can tell you are a thoughtful, caring mom!

Posted by SJF04 on Jan 31, 2013 at 12:07am

I love hearing medication success stories.  Thanks for the post

Posted by mattp13 on Feb 02, 2013 at 10:05am

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