Child Behavior Community
Serious Behavior Issues
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Serious Behavior Issues

My son is in need of help! He is now six and in first grade. He is academically advanced, but his behavior is awful! He has been suspended from school seven times, just during this school year! We have had issues with his behavior starting around age 3.5. His behavior has gotten progressively worse over the past couple of years: hitting other children, trying to hurt himself, throwing heavy objects, trying to put his foot through the wall, amongst other various aggressive behaviors! We have taken him to see several psychologists and psychiatrists, but without much hope! My six year old has now determined that no one is going or can help him! He actually says this to the doctors, teachers, and anyone else that listens! I am in desperate need of some assistance. This has gone on for so long that he believes that this is normal for him and there is no chance of change! We have done reward charts, reinforced positive behaviors, and many other 'tools.' Unfortunately, it seems that the more we try the more frequently it fails. His father and I do not know what else to do!
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Avatar_f_tn
I am sorry you and your son have had such a hard time of it. Sounds like you have done a lot to try to help him, and want to keep trying== that's great.

To start, what is the diagnosis of the psychiatrists and psychologists? Has a specific condition been identified?

Aggressive behavior can be the result of various different conditions, some of which can be treated successfully with medication in combination with behavior management. If a person's brain is missing some chemicals or has some chemical imbalance, then the imbalance needs to be corrected before effective learning can take place. So it is possible that your son needs some medical treatment in conjunction with the behavior modification to make it work.
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Avatar_n_tn
We have had more than one diagnosis. Several things have been ruled out, including ADD or ADHD. Depending on which psychologist or psychiatrist you ask he has a low spectrum Autism or even a defiance disorder. His current psychiatrist believes it to be some type of behavior disorder and that my son needs to be 're-taught' the proper reactions to situations. It is believed that his behavior is uncontrolled - meaning he knows the difference between right and wrong, but he follows through with the negative behavior any way. He, at one point, was on medication, but actually made it much worse for him! His behavior began to get worse, as well as his sleep patterns. His current psychiatrist does not believe that this can be treated with medication, at this point.

Our issue is that the school almost seems like they do not want to deal with it. We have asked for additional resources, such as someone to be with him during the day to help modify his behavior as it starts to build up aggressively. The school's reply to our request: "It is not like we have paraprofessionals sitting around looking for something to do. And your son has been tested for special ed and does not meet the criteria."

With an attitude like that, it makes it that more difficult for us. We have considered alternate school options, but our son is so advanced that it could cause more problems - since sometimes it is due to boredom within his class. He already does his brother's third grade work with ease (we have caught him doing his homework several times). I have asked the school to give him additional work that is at a harder level, but there reaction is that he can have it has a reward for positive behavior!! His school also is thinking about putting him in the expulsionary class room when he needs his breaks! I just don't think that's appropriate! I don't think punishing him with worse students is going to work!! He needs help - and I just wish the school would step up to help since he spends 8 hours of his day there!!!

We are just at a stand-still with a feeling of hopelessness! We want to help him; get our six-year old back to a happy childhood without having to try so hard to be good!! We have tried different behavior modification techniques at home, but they all seem to fail quickly!

Perhaps someone can recommend something! I am in definite hopes that with the RIGHT technique I can get back my loving, happy, and healthy six-year-old son!! He just wants to have a friend and we just want him to feel like he belongs with his peers again!
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377600_tn?1225167036
I think your son is right--no one can help hill--tell him he has to LEARN to help himself in life.  Tell him that you are there to help him  learn things--as well as any doctors you introduce him to.  Just because one dr. can't identify with him--tell him--another one might.  It is a search process.

I think he is having some type of anxietic reaction.  Very bright children can sometimes feel like a rug has been pulled out from underneath them.  They are bright, but they are not mature enough to handle it--frustration ensues.

I think he should learn techniques on how to handle his frustration.  I agree with the doctor about the techniques to help him, but I do not think that the dr. understands from where your son is reacting--his mental triggers.

I hope this helps.

Teaching my six year old some maturity has been hard too.  She regresses at times, but I tell her that I am proud of her...six is a transitional age--the transition to the ages of reason--and that can be anxietic--especially, in smart children who are very aware of everything.

Take Care.
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm re-reading this because it just stayed with me.

Your son has been suspended from school seven times-- in the first grade. That is severe.  You have described aggressive/ anger-motivated behavior-- a child who is not in control of his reactions.  You also said you tried medication, and it made him worse.
I am wondering if you tried stimulants- because I think most drs would immediatly think ADHD and try a stimulant for this type of behavior pattern.  Sometimes it takes several tries with different stimulants to get to the right one, if indeed ADHD is the problem.

Having said all that, if ADHD is not the problem, he could have an explosive anger problem. There ARE medications that can help with this. I think you should see another doctor who might be willing to work with you on getting some type of calming medication for your child-- he needs to calm down before he will be able to learn any of the behavior things you want to teach him.
I encourage you to contact another physician for your child and keep trying. I know its hard, but we can't give up -- their our kids....if we don't help them, as you can see from your son's school, no one else will.
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