At wits end!?

by Clark
(Peoria)

For about the last 4 yrs, my 8yr old son has been battling many of the items on the checklist. My wife and I have not taken him to a doctor because we felt he would outgrow this as would a normal child with the different phases that occur throughout their childhood.


Background:
Motor skills are weak, but he has no cognitive problems in school. He has great grades and is a complete angel at school or while playing with other children at their homes. At our home, he does fine, but will have an occasional tantrum that lasts up to 2 hours. Sometimes he has 3-5 tantrums per week.


Commonalities occurring are his defiance with clothing. Socks do not always feel right. He won't wear his underwear and pants can be troublesome at times. He wears shoes with velcro straps, but complains they are not tight enough. Many of these items are right on according to the checklist, but he has one very disturbing addition. He will continually repeat he wishes he were dead when things seem at their worst. As a parent, this is the absolute most difficult thing to hear. We are both professionals. She teaches 2nd grade and I am a firefighter. We spend a great deal of time with him and his 3 siblings (ages 12, 5, & 5). He gets a great deal of 1 on 1 time because we thought that might be a piece of the puzzle. Unfortunately, it doesn't appear to have much effect. We are setting up an appointment with the family physician to explore diagnosis' and treatments. My fear is medications and/or psychological problems, but we won't jump the gun just yet. We are taking this one step at a time and thus far the hardest part is just taking the first step.

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Oct 24, 2011
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update
by: Author of At wits end

We did see our family doctor and got more information than expected. In a nut shell, we went with ADD medication. I can't tell you how many of the issues were resolved by this regiment. I felt extremely guilty about "drugging" my child, but after speaking with other adults on similar meds, found out that this was not the case. They stated that it gave them the focus that they had lacked for years. Hearing that made me much more accepting and after a couple months, we have became so much better as parents.

Best of all, he was able to effectively communicate his ideas as clearly as ever. This may not be the appropriate step for all cases, but it was, in my mind, the most appropriate for my child. Thanks for all the comments made thus far. It's great to know we're not alone.

Oct 24, 2011
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Right there with you
by: steffeni

My daughter (8yrs) is doing the SAME thing. I read this and said "OMG thats my daughter". Right now we are having issues with clothes too. She wants to wear the same shirt everyday. Its literally wash and wear. The kids always ask her why she wears the same thing everyday and now she feels embarrassed. She is overly attached to her underwear and doesnt want me to wash them. (I HAVE TO!!!) and she gets VERY upset when i do.

She also always says she has no friends (and she does) and always says she "wants to die". It makes my heart hurt because i dont know what to do. We are always late to school because of these issues and the teachers dont understand it.
I also have not went to a dr. to get info or diag. because i dont know if i can pay for it nor if this is what she has.......but today, i am going to research alot online. Get some books and read up and make a dr. appt.
Good luck to your family also!! :)

Nov 22, 2009
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10 yr old Daughter with SPD diagnosed at 6
by: Anonymous

It takes alot of patience and understanding to best deal with our children with this unique quality. What brought me to a therapist in the beginning was trouble with dressing and entering the school. Once a diagnosis was made it was in a way a sort of relief that we were not crazy and as many will accuse parents of SPD as being bad parents, that was the hardest for me to deal with. I think we need to have simulations as adults so we can fully understand how debilitating this can be for our children, my daughter who is now 10 is still unable to enter her school like the other children.

I notice with my own daughter she is stronger than me and can pick up items I cannot even pick up. The severe anxiety she suffers over people watching her and various other anxieties is heart breaking. I have wonderful support from her school and I recommend seeing a therapist if you are not as lucky to have school support, so that it can be implemented by a therapist and the schools are required by law to accommodate and disability, and this certainly is one as most of you well know.

Nov 16, 2009
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take heart
by: Anonymous

I have a kiddo who is now 30 and in college. He still has sensory issues but is functioning well has a sweetie and things are looking up.
Developmentally he had many of the same symptoms you describe. We did deep pressure, indirect lighting, a variety of music low in the background (he now has great taste in music and works pt time as a DJ).

When he was tested in K his teacher thought he was cognitively delayed. The opposite was true he was off the charts at the high end.
As much as he hated school he loved learning.
We got through the early years easily enough using brushing, deep pressure, joint compression and heavy play (he had a dirt bike)
It got harder when the hormones hit and he did require some intense work in the area of self regulation. This improved when he quit school and got his GED.

Now we are back to the beginning of this missive where he's 30 and in college.

I wrote this so you would know there is hope and these kiddos do improve. enjoy the good times and breathe through the bad. Try family Yoga it does help.

NOTE: Having a diagnosis can be a double edged sword as it follows long past the school years and can effect college and future employment. On the other hand it does get services that are necessary. Also be wary of meds they can be prescribed for one thing when something else is really the problem and they come with awful side effects. Thoroughly research any drugs that are suggested. It may be more difficult going drug free but in the long run avoiding the side effects and working hard in short spurts to teach coping skills really is the best choice.

Virtually any kid can learn in 5-15 minute blocks.

Nov 04, 2009
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know SPD
by: Anonymous

hello maria is classic behavior in SPD children, they can not happy for they have anxiety. I wish you a better future life.

Nov 01, 2009
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New TO SPD
by: Maria

My 7 year old son displays many of the signs on the check list too. Clark, like you my son says things like that as well. He seems to never get enough attention and is constantly needy. He always feels like he is a terrible person. He is always saying " everyone hates me " it is so difficult to know what to do for him. We have an appointment to get a referral to an OT. Has anyone dealt with severe insecurities and constant meltdowns?

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