Friday, October 12, 2012

So many questions...

This week has been a horrible week. "Crisis" is the word that comes to mind to define it.

My son said he hated himself. He said he wanted to kill himself. At 6 years old.

There was talk of taking him to the ER and him being treated inpatient by the doctor.

I found out ritalin can cause suicidal thoughts.

We took him off it.

He stopped the majority of the negative self-talk, the suicidal threats.

Medicine caused this for the most part. Medicine that I decided (with the help of a doctor) to 'try'. Looking back, it went downhill slowly. How did I not notice sooner?

Medicine we decided he needed because he needs constant redirection and is hyperactive. But HAPPY. And he passed the end of year tests, so he's not behind.

So he's progressing, he's learning, he's happy. But he's hard to keep on task, requiring extra work by the teachers.

So who am I medicating him for? My job is to make the best decisions for HIM. Not to make him 'easy'.

His self-esteem is not suffering because of his ADHD. He is not struggling academically. He just requires a lot more of teachers.

I see the flip side. I'm going into education. But we're talking brain-altering medication for my 6 year old.

I'm just not so sure anymore this is the path we need to be on. Maybe we need a break. But we need to make a decision in the best interest for our son, not for anyone else. That's our job.

Then I wonder about the self-depreciation. There is an underlying issue there somewhere that we need to address.

When I say I hate autism, I mean I hate the difficulties that it causes my son. I can't recall ever saying it around my son, but maybe he's overheard me. Does he think that I hate him because I say that?

Another re-evaluation and lesson: however angry I may be with the hand he was dealt, I will not speak negative of it. I can't do it anymore. I can't chance that it may be what hurts him.

I wonder if this is a bigger sign. There is a 'probable mood disorder' diagnosis involved.

It is heartbreaking for your child to say they want to kill themselves. That they hate themselves. You ask if they know you love them, they say yes. Which means I am powerless. My love is not enough. He has plenty of friends. That is not enough. We have family and friends (and friends who are like family) that adore him. That is not enough, either.

My son lives in a world where everything is mixed up, and a lot doesn't make sense. Things that are supposed to be easy are hard, so hard. This world is not always a friendly place for him.

I do my best to keep him happy. To help him love his life. To teach him how to navigate this world that doesn't fit, trying to interpret how he sees things and what he needs and getting it from every situation.

It's exhausting.

And now I feel like I'm failing.

The ONE job on this earth that I feel I cannot, must not fail at is being a good mother. That, to me, is the single thing that I cannot screw up no matter what.

So I am struggling with him, trying to find my footing and get back to helping him, stopping the hurt, making his life good.

Every first star I see, every yellow stoplight I go through, every lucky penny I find, every night when I pray (and day, several times)... my wish is the same. For my kids to have everything they dream of in life.

I can only hope that this is an answer to those in progress. A rough patch to lead to our dreams.


  1. Love to you and your kiddos. I am impressed with how well you have delt with the situation. I only hope I would be as strong

  2. My nine year old daughter has both Bipolar I and autism as diagnoses. I have found the best thing I can do for her, besides closely monitoring her medication, is helping her learn to self regulate. Among the tools she has learned to use over the last 5 years are music, weighted vest/blanket, a fidget wedge, meditation, yoga, tapping (EFT), swinging, jumping jacks, and using the trampoline. I am surprised they put your son on ritalin- they usually stay away from ritalin if a child has a mood disorder. There are other ADHD medications out there that do not have the side effects of ritalin.

  3. Hi. It sucks that you're dealing with this. Plain and simple. I do want to thank you though because I'm in a similar situation and reading your story is helping me. My son is 6 and in 1st grade and he's a handful for the teachers. But he's managing with the school work (with lots of redirection and attention) and he's happy. They have gingerly been trying to suggest medicating him but I feel like it would be more to make their lives easier than to help my son. So far we have chosen not to go down that path. I hope your son can find some lasting peace. It must be awful to have those negative thoughts/feelings.

  4. I absolutely wished my son was born after yours instead of 12 years earlier! Oh how I needed all of this information, help, insight, and patience that you have shown/talked about/given!
    I was just so ignorant and accepting of the medical and teaching staff and I so regret it now :(
    Thanks for it all because even though most of it is too late for me to help him, there are some items I can use to start teaching him :) and others about him and the issues he faces.