Allowing children to be children

27 09 2010

Continuing from my previous post on wrongful diagnosis, I met with my son’s specialist this Friday. He showed me some paper work between he and the School asking if I had seen it? I replied “NO that I hadn’t”

I discussed with him the issues of the medication he had placed my son on regarding a push from the school and my ex wife. Again I mentioned about how my wife who is a youth officer and my mother in law who is a youth career both haven’t seen any indication of Asperger’s or Austism with my son and he agreed that he didn’t think he had it either.

He did say though that he had him on the lowest medication and thought it would be good for him to be on for 12 months as it would help him stabilise his anger and develop some better behaviour controls. During our discussion he said he was totally happy with my not giving my son this medication during the week I had with him for the School Holidays, but it would be a good idea to continue it over the weekends I had him.

We spoke about counselling, to which he said that is a great idea if you are able to take him.

What a bun fight this turned out to be… I picked the boys up on Friday afternoon. Took them to their grandmothers and then home… I had to discipline the boys for fighting at home and their mum rings them up… to which when I spoke to her she called me a liar for seeing the doctor etc..I hung up on her.

My oldest son (11) became angry, telling me that I was lying about seeing the doctor. That he knew my bro had these problems and I knew nothing about it at all. His mother had told him to make sure I gave his brother his medication no matter what…

A few weeks ago I said to my son, “Son, I know your angry and its better to get it out then leave it in, so be angry with me” and boy did he let me have it. … Which was OK, better he gets it out then to allow it to boil and eat away at you.

My ex rang the coppers, had the coppers come out to check on us for apparently abusing the boys on the Friday night. The police spoke to us both, I told them what had happened and they said…sorry to disturb you…

The next day my son was still angry and wanted to go home… I was happy for him to go home…but would have preferred him to stay for the week and work out his issues with Dad…meanwhile mum is constantly on the phone to him encouraging him to come home…. I get a phone call from the police again telling me my ex was at the station demanding they help her get her son back… when I told the Constable that we did have a argument and I thought it better he stay with me to work through the issue… the Constable replied; “You have that right, its your agreed week to have your sons and we can’t get involved”

15minutes later she is on the door banging to be allowed in and because of past experiences I kept the door locked and told her no! Her words of advice to my son were… Ring 000 and tell them your big bad daddy is hitting you and you need to get away….

Lucky my wife came home and my ex stopped her intimidation. We both spoke to my son and let him go back with mum…to her disgust my other son decided to go home with her and she abused us about how was she going to look after both boys as she was supposed to be working.

A couple of huge issues came out of the event.

  1. I spoke to my ex about the need for the oldest to have counselling…She said he is having it and she is sitting in the room while he has it… How on earth can a young boy starting in his teenage years have counselling about all the issues at home, the separation and what is going on for him while his mum is sitting with him?
  2. The constant undermining of my position of the boys dad and the destabilising effect this has on my boys in doing so. My son should never have been given the responsibility of his brothers medications…as the policeman told him on Friday night… allow your mum and dad to be parents and you enjoy being a boy.
  3. I see a double whammy here though in that he is going to a fortnightly after school support group for kids with disabled siblings. Its being reinforced to him that his brother is disabled, and through his eyes I am a liar about him not being so.
  4. During my sons outpouring of his anger he spoke of how mum tells him every thing and that all I want to do is cause problems for her and so he isn’t allowed to nor will he tell me what mum says….This is a continual problem with my ex and my boys. I have written before about how her having adult conversations with the boys has caused problems where I have had to pick on son up from school because what she told him was making him feel sick.

Yesterday at church as we shared this story with our pastor and he said… “Huge kick in the nuts” and that is what it is…not only for me but for my boys as well….


Children Wrongly Diagnosed.

22 08 2010

On Page 3 of todays Sun Herald (Sydney) there is an article about the push from parents / schools to have children diagnosed as having autistic type traits so that they can get access to special needs schools and help for their children.

However the paper says that many of these students are being wrongly diagnosed. This is an issue that is close to home. My ex-wife has pushed with the help of the public school to have my 8-year-old son be diagnosed as being autistic. To the doctors credit he has refused to do so.

Yes I admit there are behavioural issues with my son at school. Some of these behaviours can seem to be an autistic or ODD (oppositional defiance disorder) and ADD origin. However when at a school meeting with both my ex and a member of Doc’s I said that I don’t believe his issues fell into any of these categories, rather his behavior was stemming from issues at home and named those issues. I was told they didn’t want to know about that, that I needed to stick to the issues at hand which was his behavior at school.

Hmmmm I really felt like saying to them @^#$&@# ^&*&  but didn’t.

Some of the things I mentioned was my sons behavior being linked to certain people having adult conversations with him (8)

  • Such as one particular time I was asked by the school to come and get him from sick bay… before we even got out the school gate he asked me about why I was being really mean to mummy in making her give me what at the time we were discussing for property settlement the measly sum of $10k.
  • The other night he said on the phone…Daddy I’m too distressed to talk to you because you did this….  another time in discussing how long he would spend with me during school holidays said….its not fair that you have us longer… we think its better that we spend 50/50 % of the time with you and mummy (this from a 7 year old boy)
  • During a time of suspension I was looking after him during the day making him do his school work. One day he didn’t want to do it and I made him do so. The next day my ex brings him, tells me in front of me that he didn’t want to do his school work and that she had told him don’t worry..daddy wont make you do your school work..Will you daddy.  My reply was that indeed I was going to make him do his school work, to which she made him get in the car for she would take him to work…then ranted about me being a bad father making her take him to work… then she told my son to get out of the car after I stood my ground telling her that she could take him to work, but if he stayed with me he would do his school work… My son was 6 at the time, about to turn 7. He had a paddy screaming about not wanting to stay with dad and wanted to go with mummy…her reply was see what such a bad father you are… I calmly told my son that I would count to three..then if he wasn’t up off the floor and sitting at his desk I would smack his bottom as he was too old to have such a tantrum… he got off the floor, went and did his work and we had no more problems.
  • Other times he has said, Mummy says your just lazy and mentally ill daddy…and not really sick at all. Which was her catch cry when I came home from hospital where I had spent 52 days recovering from Viral Encephalitis, which had paralysed my right side resulting in my need of both walking stick and wheel chair.
  • There are too many situations to share where my sons behavior has been linked to stuff that is going on at home. There are financial benefits also if he is diagnosed as having special needs… however when I contacted the pediatrician about what was going behind the scenes with my son, he said to me…”Now its all making sense and he has refused to diagnose my son with having autistic tendencies… especially after hearing that he had none of the tendencies before I became chronically ill….

I applaud these researchers who have come out with this research… I feel validated in that the problem is not my son. I decried the teachers and the system who are too quick to want to drug the kids, put a band-aid on their behavior and not really deal with the root problems…shame shame shame.