Child Behavior Forum
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Avatar universal

Other End of Weight Problem

  Glad to see this forum-I've become chummy with your gastro and neuro counterparts-unfortunately-over the past year.
  My son was diagnosed with ADD and a learning disability in the 2nd grade-he is now 13 and in the eighth grade.  He was a fussy, irritable baby who grew into a child with alot of oppositional behavior and has been a real trial.  He has never slept well and and just generally blows everything that happens to him out of proportion in a negative way.  He's the original "the glass is half empty" personality.  I now know alot of that is ADD personality but for years, I figured I was just a lousy mom. (Thank God my younger son is the opposite.)  My older son's weight has climbed over the years.  I feel he is obsessed with food.  I understand from my own experience the "comfort" of food as I have a similar problem.  He often has stomachaches but wants to eat even tho his stomach hurts.  If you suggest he wait a few minutes to eat until dinner, he blows up.  He's got to have something NOW.  Sometimes he forgets that we have already eaten.  He'd eat constantly if I let him.  Over the years I've tried the pediatrician and a nutritionist-they say "just don't buy Twinkies".  I don't, but he can eat a handful of plain bread or a tube of Ritz crackers!  I feel he's a carbo junkie.  He's finally at 250 and only 5'5" tall and has "breasts".  He wants to play football next year so we enrolled as a family at the YMCA.  A trainer from one of the high school teams works there and is trying to help him with exercises and told him to cut the carbs, so he's now trying.  The school lunches are junk so I've been making him a chicken sandwich (baked instead of fried like he usually eats) or a salad with baked chicken cut up on it.  As I said above, he has always had lots of stomachaches, which I did too as a kid.  He seems to get terrible stomach pains, which I think are usually gas, but it seems to be becoming more constant.  Sometimes he has diahrrea (I think usually after cheese products like pizza, which kills him) and sometimes not. Now he's beginning to get heartburn. (I have GERD myself).  I thought the change in diet, which he is really working at, would help his stomach (we've been on this about 2 weeks).  But, it hasn't.  This morning he blew up because his stomach hurt and I made the mistake of offering to stop and get breakfast on the way to school  He wisely said there wasn't anything he could eat.  He started yelling that he was starving (which he isn't but his food intake is markedly lower than it was) and that he was not eating at lunch (I think he's been throwing my lunches away and not eating).  He has seen progress-lost 8 lbs and at least one person at school has noticed.  I sometimes think he has an eating disorder but, of course, no one cares unless it's anorexia or bulimia.  Oh, he did take Ritalin for a while, but that didn't even curb his appetite. I know I just need to hang in there.  I'm not sure what I need, but I wish there was some help for him.  He doesn't want to go anywhere much on the weekends and just sits and watches TV-especially Hercules and Xena-like he's obssessed with them too.  I tell my husband, who has no patience with him( that that is somewhat normal (I liked to spend alot of time alone at that age) Then when a commercial comes, he heads for the kitchen.  I've sort of become his "buddy" since he and his dad don't get along so well.  My personality is more like his (God help me) so I can communicate better with him.  But he "vents" on me more too (But apologizes afterward)  No one seems to want the help with a diet, but I feel some of the problem is "between his ears".  Sorry this is so wordy.  Any suggestions?      
1 Responses
Avatar universal

Dear Pam,
Your note suggests that you think your son's difficulties may involve more than Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and learning disability, and you are probably correct. The extent of his eating/weight problem and the volatility of his mood indicate the possibility of a mood disorder (of which his eating habits may be a symptom). It is neither possible nor appropriate to offer diagnoses in a forum such as this, but there is definitely help available. A child mental health clinician could evaluate your son and offer you guidance about appropriate remedies. Depending on your health care options/requirements, you may need to obtain a referral from your son's pediatrician or you may be able to pursue the clinical evaluation yourself (self-referral).
This information is provided for general medical education purposes only. Please consult your physician for diagnostic and treatment options pertaining to your specific medical condition.
*Keyword: weight, mood

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