Sunday, February 28, 2010

Toddler to Now

From the time Cayle was born up until she was 5 years old, she would not sleep all night. She was such a rambunctious toddler and she is still that way. She started showing signs of ODD at the age of two. It wasn't just the terrible twos. I know...terrible twos, well she was much different, very defiant and having fits if she didn't get her way and even sneaky and lying about it then. She was so smart, saying her ABC's at 18 months old and talking so good at that age, but she had this terrible defiance and attitude as well. When she started Pre-K at 3, I got a call just about everyday that she was picking and being mean to other kids and telling the teachers off. I knew then that something was wrong with her behavior for sure, so that's when the Dr. visits started...and we are still seeing Doctors 10 years later.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Other Reasons To Think Your Child May Be ODD

Your discipline isn't working

Your child or teen laughs off your punishments

Your child or teen's behavior is getting worse

Your child or teen calls you names

Your child or teen's disrespect is getting worse

More Causes of ODD

By Rick Shaffer
Unfortunately, the exact cause of ODD is not known. However, there are several theories regarding the cause of the disorder. Researchers believe that the disorder may be related to:

• A child’s temperament and the family’s response to it

• A child’s social skills

• A child’s ability to communicate through language

• How parents discipline and understand the child

• The way a child’s body adjusts to arousal and stimulation

• Having parents who are overly concerned with power and control

• Disrupted childcare – involving, for example, multiple caregivers

• An inherited disposition to the disorder, possibly both environmental as well as genetic

• Neurological damage (such as a head injury)

• Prenatal and perinatal factors.

American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry – 202-966-7300; – The academy’s “Facts for Families” series features two items relevant to families interested in ODD. Check out and

Rick Shaffer is an attorney and freelance writer who often writes on health and financial issues.

Diagnosing ODD

By Rick Shaffer
Because the symptoms of ODD tend to mirror common childhood and adolescent behavior, differing primarily in frequency and degree, recognizing and diagnosing the disorder can be difficult. In addition, similar symptoms resulting from other disorders can make the diagnosis more complex. For these reasons, it is important to have the child evaluated by a child psychiatrist, child psychologist or other qualified professional.

“To diagnose ODD, the disruptive behavioral pattern has to be significantly more intense, prolonged and frequent, and cause considerably more dysfunction when compared to children of similar age and developmental level,” Toppelberg explains. “Determining whether the behaviors are significantly different from what would usually be expected in a child at that age can be quite complex and shows how the developmental expertise of a child psychiatrist or child psychologist may be necessary to make an accurate diagnosis and effective recommendations.”

In addition, Toppelberg notes, “problems with the development of language or with learning may also fuel the negativistic and oppositional behavior, making the assessment even more complex.”

If a doctor suspects ODD, he or she will first:

• Talk with the child and with their parents.

• Review the child’s and the family’s history.

• Obtain information about the child’s functioning in school.

• Look for signs of other disorders in the child. (ODD may be accompanied by one or more other psychological disorders, further increasing the difficulty of diagnosis).

A diagnosis of ODD will not be made unless:

• The child displays at least four of the typical behaviors of the disorder.

• These behaviors occur more frequently and have more serious consequences than is typical in children of a similar age.

• The behavior symptoms lead to significant problems in the child’s school, work or social life.


American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry – 202-966-7300; – The academy’s “Facts for Families” series features two items relevant to families interested in ODD. Check out and

Rick Shaffer is an attorney and freelance writer who often writes on health and financial issues.


Well, I got a phone call from Cayle's Principal Friday. She and another girl had words and Cayle hollered out and got suspended for two days. This is just another downfall for her in school. We are trying so hard to work with her and teach her not to lose her temper and get in trouble. The worst part is that it doesn't seem to bother her. She acts like it is nothing wrong with being suspended. I am going to the school today and talk with the Principal and see what we can do.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Some Ways A Parent can Help A Child With ODD

~Take a break if you feel you are going to make a conflict with your child worset
~Give your child praise when he/she shows cooperation

~Prioritize the things that you want your child to do, one at a time.

~Enforce limits...let your child know that there are limits to what he/she can do and let him/her know that there are consequences if he/she does not stay within these limits. At all times follow through with the consequences so that your child will learn not to do things that he/she is not supposed to do.

~With my own daughter, we have tried to get her to take a time out when she feels a need to explode or to start a conflict. This helps and we are still working on it, but try to explain this to your child. Explain to them that they can go to a safe place...their room, dog lot, etc. and take a few minutes to calm down and think about something good.

There are many ways to help your child, it's just finding the right ways and being able to help them and help yourself at the same time.

Friday, February 19, 2010

This Week

It was not a very good week. I got a call from the school today and Cayle has had quite a week all the way around. The Doctor said the new medicine would take about four weeks to totally kick in. She has been taking it two weeks and one day. I am praying that it will help her more than the other meds did. We are going to do some productive things this weekend and hopefully turn things around for her and get ready for a fresh start heading into next week. Will be back tomorrow for an update on how things are going.

Some Signs of ADHD

ADHD often accompanies ODD, though it can stand alone. Here are some signs of ADHD:

* trouble paying attention
* makes careless mistakes
* easily distracted
* loses things
* forgets to turn in homework
* trouble finishing class work and homework
* trouble listening
* trouble following multiple adult commands
* blurts out answers
* impatience
* fidgets or squirms
* leaves seat and runs about or climbs excessively
* hyper
* talks too much and has difficulty playing quietly
* interrupts or intrudes on others

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, ADHD occurs in an estimated 3 to 5 percent of preschool and school-age children. Therefore, in a class of 25 to 30 children, it is likely that at least one student will have this condition.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

What to do????

It is so hard when it is almost impossible to correct your child. A child that thinks he/she is in control is so difficult. I have to stay on my toes and see that everything my daughter does is not something that she shouldn't be doing. Talk about taking all your energy. Parents with ODD children are saints for making it from day to day.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Is your child struggling in school?

If your child is failing in school and think that he/she needs Special Education Assistance and you're told that they can't get it that's because ODD is a behavioral disorder and not an emotional one. This is according to the Federal guidelines for Special Education Classification and Services. Click Here for more info on IDEA. Special Education Services require an emotional diagnoses. Eligibility is often met when it is determined that a child meets both emotional and behavioral criteria for placement and services through Special Education. If your child does not qualify, Section 504 can be used. Click Here for info on Section 504 and what it is. Other alternatives such as this are sometimes difficult to implement because they are not funded. In order to receive services under Section 504, a child must first be determined to have a disability that substantially limits one or more major life functions, including education, learning, and behavior. You can submit a written request to your childs school and ask for an evaluation. Asking for help for your childs education and helping them learn and do better in school is one way that you can take a stand for their future. Some children, like mine, have a hard time in school, not because they don't try, but because they have something standing in their way.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


We have had a nice weekend. Pretty much snowed in and Cayle usually gets really bored, but we have kept busy and all in all it has been nice. Her new medicine will probably not kick in for a little while, but we are doing okay!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Raising My Daughter With ODD!

How many of you have a child with ODD(Oppositional Defiant Disorder)? I do and it is a struggle everyday. My daughter was diagnosed with ODD when she was three years old. Being independent and strong-willed is like having ODD, the difference is the tantrums, controlling, defiance and aggressiveness that goes along with ODD. A child with ODD has trouble making and keeping friends, they tend to do poorly academically, and they do not follow rules set forth by adults. My daughter seems to think that she is her boss and they no one should tell her what to do or correct her. I try so hard everyday to make her realize that she is a child and that she has to listen to authority figures. It is such a struggle getting her to cooperate and understanding that she has to give in and know that she has to live by rules. She is very kind hearted and loves to help people, but she doesn't like other people helping her. She wants things done her way. You have got to have a lot of patience with a child with ODD as mine are tested everyday. Doctors tell me that there is really no known cause for ODD and that I have to set rules and stick to them and get her on a schedule and stick to it. What I do with her is I find something for her to do like making receipts out for me or going through my inventory of things and writing it down...things to keep her mind occupied. When I tell her something that she should or shouldn't do, I always have to hear what she thinks about it...instead of just following along with what I tell her, she always has to come back with something. It is a struggle to cope with the defiance that she has. I know that everyday will be a test to see if things that I am doing to help her will really help her. You have got to show a child with ODD that you are in charge and try not to let your emotions get the best of you. I just sit and cry sometimes worrying about her and wondering if I went wrong somewhere. I love her with all my heart and I just hope and pray that I can do what is necessary to help her. I know that this is a struggle for her to and seeing your child be like this is so heart breaking. I just take it one day at a time and have faith that things will get better. I have taken her to so many doctors and it has helped a lot but I have realized that this is something that we have to be in control of. It is the ones that are around her all the time and the ones that have a personal relationship with her that have to be there for her. She is my baby and no matter what I will always be there for her and lead her in the right direction...She can't do it by herself. If any of you have children like this, I know what you are going through. It is so hard to deal with and I tell myself everyday that I can't give up. She depends on me...even if she doesn't think she does.

ADHD in Relation to ODD

Nearly half of all children and adults with attention deficit disorder also suffer from a comorbid condition such as anxiety disorder, depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, or even oppositional defiant disorder. It is exceptionally rare for a physician to see a child with only ODD. Usually the child has some other neuropsychiatric disorder along with ODD. The tendency for disorders in medicine to occur together is called comorbidity. Many conditions can accompany ADHD, so like with Cayle, testing should be done to see if there is another condition which may be causing your child's behavior so that all conditions can be treated. Like me, some parents probably think "Oh my child is ADHD, I will get my Dr. to put him/her on an ADHD medicine and all will be fine". This is not always the case. ADHD meds are great for the ADHD, but there may be something else wrong as well. If a child comes to a clinic and is diagnosed with ADHD, about 30-40% of the time the child will also have ODD.
Children and adolescents with ADHD alone do things without thinking, but not necessarily oppositional things. An ADHD child may impulsively do something to someone and be sorry for it. A child with ODD plus ADHD might do something to someone and say she didn't do it.
ODD is characterized by aggressiveness, but not impulsiveness. In ODD people annoy you purposefully, While it is usually not so purposeful in ADHD. ODD signs and symptoms are much more difficult to live with than ADHD. Children with ODD can sit still.

Mood Disorders in Relation to ODD

Cayle has been diagnosed with having a mood disorder which goes hand in hand with her ODD. Three of the symptoms of mood disorder are irritability, hostility and aggression. If you look at children with ODD, probably 15-20% will have problems with their mood and even more are anxious.


Cayle is a very bright girl. She can do whatever she sets her mind to, only it usually comes with some difficulty. She is ADHD which a lot of times accompanies ODD. She has a hard time focosing on things and really has to make herself stay focused. She is on meds for ADHD and just today started a new medicine for ADHD which also should help with her ODD. She is coming off of one medicine to try this one. Her Dr. is hoping that the meds, will not be permanent, but that is something that we will have to monitor. I can tell a difference in her with the meds. She still has her days and her "fits", but I have learnt and am still learning how to cope with it, as is she.

What is ODD?

If your child or teen has a persistent pattern of tantrums, arguing, and angry or disruptive behaviors toward you and other authority figures, he or she may have oppositional defiant disorder (ODD). No one knows for certain what causes ODD. It is usually noticed between ages 1-3. With children this young these behaviors are pretty normal, but with ODD it never goes away. ODD does run in families.

Symptoms of ODD

Some of the more noticeable symptoms of ODD may include:

Frequent temper tantrums
Excessive arguing with adults
Often questioning rules
Active defiance and refusal to comply with adult requests and rules
Deliberate attempts to annoy or upset people
Blaming others for his or her mistakes or misbehavior
Often being touchy or easily annoyed by others
Frequent anger and resentment
Mean and hateful talking when upset
Spiteful attitude and revenge seeking

The disturbance in behavior must be causing significant problems in school, in relationships with family and friends and at home.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

My Daughter

I have had a long journey with my daughter having ODD, which is Oppositional Defiant Disorder. All children are defiant from time to time. In children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder, there is an ongoing pattern of uncooperative, defiant and hostile behavior. Having a child with ODD is very hard on a parent. My daughter, Cayle is 13. She has been a hand full since she was little. I noticed the defiant behavior early on. She has been in psychiatric hospitals and is on medicine. She is seeing a wonderful Doctor. Some days are almost unbearable. It depends on her mood each day that determines if she is going to have a good day or bad day. As a mom, it takes all of my energy just to keep her on a positive track. Some days are so overwhelming. It's like walking on egg shells watching what I say to her so as not to set her off. I love her dearly and we just take one day at a time.