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Overwhelmed by a 3 year old
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Overwhelmed by a 3 year old

We adopted a little boy a year ago.  He is now 3.  He runs wild in the stores, hits and kicks me, scratches and screams.  When he is discplined he just smiles and laughs.  He plays in his poop and makes huge messes.  He pinches and hits the dog. If he is asked (or told) not to do something, he will do it even more and then take off running.  He smells everything -- everything!   He is like a tornado, completely out of control.  I have raised 4 other children, I'm an older mother and have never experienced anything like this.  It's like he goes into some altered state of 'out of controlness.'  Then we'll have a couple of good days and then like a light switch he'll turn into this little monster again.  He's got some medical issues, is missing an ear, and has been raised until we got him, in a long term medical care facility.  Because he is adopted we don't have a real good mental history.  
I need help.  So far I've remained calm and stay consistent in my discplined but it doesn't seem to make a difference.  I can't leave him with a babysitter because he is so wild.  Do I need to seek professional help?  What more can I do?  What red flags should I look for that suggest this is more than just a 'three year old' behavior?  He seems to have NO impulse control.
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535822_tn?1389452880
my first reaction, is that poor child what a start in life I am not surprised there are some issues, but I dont see that they are not something that care and love and kindness cannot over come, how wonderful you adopted him .At 3 year old most children are apt to run wild , you can curtail the visits to the stores with him until he gets older , do the shopping when his Dad can look after him.Keep him away from the dog and be firm if he hits the dog, removing him .Do you take him to parks, does Dad play games , with him maybe ball games boys love that.If your concern is great a visit to the Doctor for an evaluation may be a good idea. My opinion is considering his background ,continue with your kindness, tolerance, he will grow very quickly,be firm when he needs it. .Good Luck I greatly admire folks like you who willingly adopt a challenging child .
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Avatar_n_tn
NO, you don't get it.  When he wakes up and I change his diaper he is crying, hitting, scratching and trying to get away.  When i get his dressed, he is hitting me and biting me, at breakfast he throws his food and bowl on the floor and screams, he does NOT play by himself at all.  When I stepped away from him to use the bathroom, he climbed on the kitchen counter and pushed of ALL the dishes onto the floor.  Other times, he has taken the kitchen sprayer and sprayed the wall, the flat screen tv, the floor, the ceiling, etc.  If we go somewhere I have to battle him hitting me and screaming to put his shoes on.  Getting him strapped in his car seat is a HUGE battle.  Then, out of anger he takes his shoes off and throws them at me.  When I get him out of the car and unbuckle him, he is biting and pinching me and pulling my hair and slapping my face.  When I firmly take his hands and say, "No hitting"  He smiles and hits again.  If I has him to come he takes off running the other direction (almost hit by a car 2x's).  If i let him walk  next to me in the store, he will randomly take off, when I got to pick him up and put him back in the cart he runs past me pushing the cart as hard as he can into a display while he takes off.  As I put him back in the cart he breaks my necklace, continues pinching my hands on the cart and then throws anything he can get his hands on.  Even playing with him, if I touch one of his toys he comes right into my face, grabs it and yells at me.  The more strict I become, the worse he gets.  I try to show NO emotion while discplining, simply explain NO hitting.  If i put him in his room, he empties out every toy bucket, knocks over shelves, put holes in walls.  

If I put him on my lap to read him a book, he will listen intently to the book and when it is over turn around and claw my face with  his nails.  There is not ONE task that i do with him that isn't a MAJOR battle.  

We give him lots of outside play time.  He takes sticks and tries to shove them into the dogs eye or down his ear.  He knows it's wrong because when I turn around he hides the stick behind his back.  If we go for a walk he refuses to stay out of the street.  So I hold his hand and he screams and then turns and bites my leg, so we go home.  He's no better for my husband, and my friends refuse to babysit him because he is so violent with them and with the other children.

It can take me more than 2 hours to clean up the poop he smears all over his room and toys.  This kid refuses to be loved.  I've sought professional help but can't get into see a doctor for 6 weeks.  Six LONG weeks.

Does anyone have a kid this difficult all the time?
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13167_tn?1327197724
g,  it sounds like "reactive attachment disorder".  Kids who don't get any attention in the first year of life often develop extremely difficult personalities,  because the usual thing that motivates children - the approval of their parents - doesn't motive these kids at all.  They don't feel like they "belong" in the family,  so the family shunning them or being very angry with them doesn't bother them.  

Here's a link that might help you.  With so many kids currently being adopted from foreign orphanages with this disorder,  you should be able to find some support.

Some of these symptoms you see in older children that wouldn't show up yet in a 3 year old,  it's his rage and violence (and history) sounds like RAD.

I will say,  I don't think detached discipline works that well.  You need to show anger,  embarrassment,  disappointment,  disgust,  etc.,  as are appropriate for this child to pick this up although RAD is EXTREMELY difficult to deal with if that's what he has.

BTW - the "smelling" everything is a sign of a sensory disorder,  maybe that will help.
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13167_tn?1327197724
Oops,  forgot the link.

http://www.radkid.org/signs_and_symptoms.html
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