HELP FOR PARENTS WITH STRONG-WILLED, OUT-OF-CONTROL CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS

Education and Counseling for Individuals Affected by Oppositional Defiant Disorder and ADHD

She punched me in my face hitting me in my eye and nose...

Mark,

In viewing the web information, I have not come across anything that talks about your child being violent toward you at the level I just experienced. Is there a section in the program that discusses this issue?

Sunday, my daughter got out of control angry because I started to wash her clothes that were all over her room, wet and smelling and couldn't take the smell coming from her room anymore. My husband told her that morning to clean her room and when I saw her she was laying in her bed not doing anything. So I began to do her laundry. She became extremely angry and verbally abusive so I did not respond or say anything to her. I put a load of wash in the machine and when I returned to her room she was standing in her doorway yelling at me and refused to move. When I tried to walk past her she pushed me and my arm got scratched in multiple places against some hardware on the door panel.

I called for my husband because I did not want to get into yet another fight with her and when he came she moved. She began slamming items in her room, ran into the bathroom, slammed and locked the door. We got worried what she was doing in the bathroom because back in September she attempted suicide and we almost lost her. So I unlocked the bathroom door and she tried to not let me in. I asked her what she was doing in the bathroom and she just kept yelling.

She began to hit me with the door as I was standing between the door panel and the door to keep her from closing it. She flung the door open into the glass shower doors and cracked the door luckily not breaking the glass. I subdued her to the floor to keep her from hurting herself, me or destroying anything else. I asked her if she was done and that when she calmed down I would be able to let her up. When I let her up she punched me in my face hitting me in my eye and nose. She jumped behind me and dug her fingers into my eyes luckily my husband walked around the corner and grabbed her.

This was a ridiculous situation. She then got away from my husband and called the police claiming that I was beating her. We let the police come, as we were instructed to do so many times before when she becomes violent. The only difference this time was she was the one that called them. Only she did not realize that the long police record(s) of her actions for the last year have been recorded. Out of the 3 officers that arrived, 2 of them had been to our home before and were fully aware of our daughter’s history.

The police offered to have her taken to the hospital for a psych evaluation, but when I told them I lost my job and do not have any insurance. They brought Alex out of her room and tried to talk to both of us. Of course Alex's story was much different than what my husband and I described to them, and they went from talking to both of us to just Alex. I asked the police officer in front of her, if one of his children stood in his face, yelling and screaming and then hit him, what his response would be, he stated that there would be corporal punishment and then that child would no longer be living in his house.

She stated that maybe if I would stop trying to control everything and leave her alone and her room alone it wouldn't get this bad. If I would let her hang out with her friends, even if they do get high, doesn't mean she does all of the time and what is the big deal. She brought up that I need to get a job and a life and that I turned down a job because I told her I could not be that far away. I couldn't believe she was telling 3 police officers that she was breaking the law by using drugs and bringing up our financial situation. The officers and my husband stopped her and asked her what my employment status had anything to do with this and that she is not an adult and would not fully understand the reasons behind any choices my husband I make. I just sat there in shock and disbelief.

This awful scene ended with the police officers and my husband telling our daughter that if she put one more hand on me, then she would be arrested and DCFS would take her because she will not stay in this house and be violent and extremely out of control toward her mother as well as if she was caught with these other people even if she wasn't using at the time, that she would be arrested. Before they left they told us good luck and that if she does not change and get help, that the law will step in and have to teach her the lessons she needs to learn.

Mark, this all is so overwhelming, even when you try to stay calm. Everything has become reactive instead of proactive. I do understand that what will be will be and that I cannot control what she is doing, although I keep being told by the police, that we must control our child (ironic huh) before they do. No parent, at least that I know of, does not raise their children to become a menace to society. Although our children might not be doctors, lawyers, etc., doesn't mean that we can't at least expect that they do not become a menace. Which is what we fear our daughter is becoming.

I will continue working through the program because I keep thinking about the statement of "you can't control your child, but you definitely want to influence their decisions." I have definitely been fired as her manager, but at her age, I shouldn't be a manager anymore, I should be a coach that she can turn to and if I do follow the baby steps here, then maybe just maybe that can happen. The only thing is the violence. How do we deal (how do I deal) with the violence and not let myself become cold to a child I gave birth to and have raised thus far.

I've sent this to you in hopes that you can give some advice on this very volatile situation.

Sincerely,

T.

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Hi T.,

Re: In viewing the web information, I have not come across anything that talks about your child being violent toward you at the level I just experienced. Is there a section in the program that discusses this issue?

This is covered in the Anger Management Chapter of the eBook [Online Version], but allow me to elaborate. This is actually a very simple problem to address.

First, your daughter should have a Comprehensive Psychiatric Evaluation if she has not had one already. Some medication for mood stabilization may be in order (at least temporarily).

Second, tell her upfront that the next time she commits “domestic battery” (which is exactly what occurred) you will (a) call police and file a report and (b) go to the nearest Juvenile Probation Department and file battery charges. Then she can answer to the Judge. And she will likely be court-ordered to treatment, which you may or may not have to pay for.

Having said this, ideally you want to avoid these meltdowns before they start. Again, this is all covered on the Anger Management section of the eBook.

Re: She then got away from my husband and called the police claiming that I was beating her.

Please refer to The DOs & DON'Ts When Falsely Accused <== click

But again, avoiding situations in which the child is trying to get the parent in trouble with the law is mush easier than trying to explain to authorities that you, the parent, are the victim.

Violent behavior in children and adolescents can include a wide range of behaviors:

· attempts to hurt others
· cruelty toward animals
· explosive temper tantrums
· fighting
· fire setting
· homicidal thoughts
· intentional destruction of property
· physical aggression
· threats
· use of weapons
· vandalism

Numerous research studies have concluded that a complex interaction or combination of factors leads to an increased risk of violent behavior in children and adolescents. These factors include:

· Being the victim of physical abuse and/or sexual abuse
· Brain damage from head injury
· Combination of stressful family socioeconomic factors (poverty, severe deprivation, marital breakup, single parenting, unemployment, loss of support from extended family)
· Exposure to violence in media (TV, movies, etc.)
· Exposure to violence in the home and/or community
· Genetic (family heredity) factors
· Presence of firearms in home
· Previous aggressive or violent behavior
· Use of drugs and/or alcohol

Children who have several risk factors and show the following behaviors should be carefully evaluated:

· Becoming easily frustrated
· Extreme impulsiveness
· Extreme irritability
· Frequent loss of temper or blow-ups
· Intense anger

Whenever a parent or other adult is concerned, they should immediately arrange for a comprehensive evaluation by a qualified mental health professional. Early treatment by a professional can often help. The goals of treatment typically focus on helping the child to:

· be responsible for his/her actions
· accept consequences
· express anger and frustrations in appropriate ways
· learn how to control her anger

In addition, family conflicts, school problems, and community issues must be addressed.

Research studies have shown that much violent behavior can be decreased or even prevented if the above risk factors are significantly reduced or eliminated.

Mark

Click for more help ==> My Out-of-Control Child

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