Our SN area is not a substitute for expert advice. While many Mumsnetters have a specialist knowledge of special needs, if they post here they are posting as members, not experts. There are, however, lots of organisations that can help - some suggestions are listed here. If you've come across an organisation that you've found helpful, please tell us. Go to Special needs chat, Parents with disabilities, SN teens, SN legal, SN education, SN recommendations.

My DD really doesn't like me and exp wants to take her away

(34 Posts)
queencat Sun 02-Dec-12 22:49:45

She is seven, has been formally diagnosed with ADHD, I'm still trying to get other diagnosis for ASD and dyspraxia.

She absolutely hates me. I'm a single mum bringing up three children by myself. She goes to her dad and his partner every other weekend. They NEVER have bad behaviour from her. He refuses to believe there is any kind of issue.

Because her behaviour is so extreme and awful when she is with me (he has witnessed this) he is now saying that I am making her miserable and she is better off away from me.

I don't know how to 'control' her behaviour. Please please help me.

swanthingafteranother Mon 03-Dec-12 22:51:58

I too have had a daughter who screamed at me relentlessly, said she hated me, I was worst mother in the world between 6 and 8yrs. But actually, do you know, she loves me a lot, and these outbursts were a kind of frustration at the family situation. She had a brother with ASD who was getting a lot of my attention. She wanted to be close, and that was her way of saying it. Go Away, I hate you.

She needs so much love and closeness so that is what I am working on atm. Lots of cuddles, lots of chatting, less presents, more time, less telling off. Accepting she is only 8. It will get better, but the best thing is to acknowledge that things have not been good between you recently but that you want to change the way you get on with her. There are no overnight miracles, but little by little she will stop feeling she is backed into a corner. FT will help.

I don't think she wants to live with her Dad at all, but that she is screaming for you because she feels unhappy and wants a response from you. The most important thing is to acknowledge she is unhappy not just naughty. You are her mum, you are her most important advocate, and your lovingself esteem is vital to her own self worth.

endoftherainbow Mon 03-Dec-12 22:39:01

Don't doubt yourself and get back to listening to your instincts - it's this that has got you so far in obtaining some dx. Perhaps redefine to yourself what you will and won't accept in terms of her behaviours at home - find some that you can ignore so that you can reduce the number of battles and get some respite. If school are suggesting or agreeing to the idea of some family therapy - they are at least listening and believing what you are saying.

Ineedalife Mon 03-Dec-12 21:58:10

Do you know what queen, I remember being stuck in those horrible negative circles with Dd1.

She would come back from her dads full of crap food and loaded with presents and money and then be vile towards me. Saying she hated me and screaming.

I would then feel angry with her which would then lead to her hating me more.

Any requests to do even simple things like get washed or brush her teeth would always bet met with her saying No.

She was and still is very confrontational and she pushes the boundaries all the time.

Children like them are very, very hard work. If someone offers you support of any kind grab it with both hands and hang on to it.

I wouldnt have wanted Dd1 to go and live with her dad, he was a rubbish parent but somedays when she was young I would gladly have let her go.

I wasnt on my own when I had 3 but I didnt have the same problems with the other 2 even though Dd3 has ASD she does not have ADHD and I think that is what makes the difference, that relentlessness.

ADHD/ASD etc are really hard to live withsad

CatchingMockingbirds Mon 03-Dec-12 21:43:51

I think going for the holidays will only reinforce her wanting to live there. She'll be able to get up when she wants, no school to go to, eat rubbish the whole time, go out for days out, then after Xmas day she'll have loads of new toys and presents to open. Then when she's back home it's back to school, chores, homework, etc. He needs about a month of school days with her, but obviously the distance makes it really difficult.

Hippocrocopig Mon 03-Dec-12 21:36:45

Oh Queen, I could have written your post myself. We are in exactly the same situation and I just know how much it hurts. I also have 3 kids, I am also on own.

My dd has ADHD, dyspraxia, socia comms disorder and probable Aspergers. All bundled nicely under the umbrella of "Mixed Neurological Developmental Disorder". Se was prescribed equasym and medikenet but the less desirable side effects overtook the positive ones, so we have taken her off it for now.

She tells me daily how she hates me, I'm a useless mum and tonight I'm a "nasty spiteful witch" when all l have asked her to do (for the 10th time) is to brush her teeth. She is 8.

She also says she wants to live with her father ( who is also remarried and she goes with her brother every other weekend). And do you know what, as much as it tears my soul apart. I am almost at the point of agreeing with it. He sees her 4 days out of a possible 31 a month, so of course life is fab over there.

I just wanted to say I feel your pain, if you would like to pm me, please do. Sounds like you could do with the support. smile

mrslaughan Mon 03-Dec-12 21:04:21

Applied behaviour analysis therapy - I only know a minuscule amount about it - I think moondog knows a lot about it, but also starlight knows quite a lot about it - I am sure there are quite a few ladies on here who know a lot more than me about this.
It's about reinforcing good behaviour, and changing behaviour to more of what you want to see, and less of what you don't. I just did a lousey job of explaining that. Mostly used for autistic spectrum disorder - but I believe has been used successfully with ADHD and other learning disorders, where you want to change behaviour.
Sorry - I have explained that badly, but goggle it.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Mon 03-Dec-12 20:55:05

Why can't she go for the holidays? No need to change school or anything.

queencat Mon 03-Dec-12 20:44:04

Mrslaughan what is ABA?

queencat Mon 03-Dec-12 20:42:37

Thank you for your wise words. If she goes to him she will have to change schools and I think that is too much for her, she clearly doesn't adapt to change well and is settled at school. I also don't want to be the mum that gives up and says she can't cope with it all. I feel like I have to try and make this work as she is my daughter and I want her to be happy. I went to see the school again today and they have suggested a family therapy type situation so we can get to the root of it all.

Inaflap Mon 03-Dec-12 20:30:37

You sound at the end of your tether and your self esteem sounds at rock bottom. I don't mean to sound heartless but perhaps your daughter is trying to tell you something through her behaviour that she can't articulate. Children pick up and hate any feeling of insecurity and antipathy and this results in oppositional behaviour. I've witnessed this in classes I have taught and also in children towards parents. I would seriously consider letting her go and live with them then you get her for weekends and can be the fun parent. While she is at his house you can then work on getting your relationship back on a good footing with your other two children and when you are more happy, I think you will find her behavior improves with you. That way if it all goes well with them, she is happy and although you are not her primary carer and I can really understand how that hurts to give that up, you at least will have a good and long lasting relationship with her and with your other two children.

As everone else has pointed out, he is getting the best deal so far and she is manipulating the situation. All that is happening at the moment is a lot of damage so something has to change. You are a great mum and whatever you decide to do (and you are between a rock and a hard place) you will do for her best interests. If you decide that she stays with you, then how about a parenting course for hints and tips. I know what it is like to get into a rut and be shouting a lot. I've done that and still haven't got it right so can't give you much advice there but good luck in whatever you do.

mrslaughan Mon 03-Dec-12 19:25:01

I am sure that her ADHD contributes - but it sounds like she is pitting her father against you, and he is letting her do that, which is such a shame - to put it mildly.
Can you access ABA - to help mange her behaviour?
Would you consider giving custody to get dad? I know it seems drastic...... You might find with just 2 and without (what seems) her derisive influence the other 2 may become more manageable.
With regards to the medicine, you are her caregiver , give it to her on the days she is with you.
And big hugs - it will get better.

madwomanintheattic Mon 03-Dec-12 19:16:06

Oh, I know. That doesn't make it correct though. We all have our own demons around parenting, and I suspect that some of yours stem from a general feeling of not being good enough courtesy of your lovely ex.

I do think you need to discuss some options with your gp, or contact paed re some parenting type classes that will help you regain some control over your thoughts, and help you move towards more of a team/ family mentality, rather than 'me v them'. That doesn't mean I agree you are a shit mother. (Lord knows I recognise that family dynamic> but it does mean I think that your low self esteem needs some support to enable you to feel like a better mother.

To realign your perspective, iyswim.

queencat Mon 03-Dec-12 18:22:57

It just feels like me against the three of them the whole time, I take no joy from the children and believe me I feel like a right bitch the whole time. Everything degenerates into a struggle or an argument. Nothing is ever calm and easy so it does feel like me vs them. My feelings generally are that I'm actually quite shit at being a mum.

madwomanintheattic Mon 03-Dec-12 17:56:22

Quite. There's no way he'd get anywhere near a court room.

You need to stop with the whole 1 vs 3 thing though.

Versus?

It isn't a war, or a competition. I get that it feels like it. Go to t your own gp and ask for a referral for counselling, or family counselling. You need to be emphasizing the teamwork, not pitting yourself against your children, however much it feels like that (and believe me, I know.)

Foxy800 Mon 03-Dec-12 14:55:20

He is being ridiculous over the meds, a paed wouldnt prescribe them if she didnt need them and I dont think a court would overrule a doctor if the doctor can prove it is needed.

Sending you a huge hug.xx

ChristmasTreegles Mon 03-Dec-12 11:04:48

I wouldn't recommend being secretive about it, as then it does look odd. Honestly, you have a prescription for it, given by a paed, you are not in the wrong to administer the meds to her.

He is not going to take you to court. Any solicitor will look at that and say "um, she has a prescription for it, given by a paed who has assessed her.... nothing wrong with it." He might waste a little time and money TRYING to take it to court. But I can't imagine it would even see the inside of a courtroom!

Check with a solicitor about your legal standing, but I would simply tell your ex that this constant barrage of nonsense about child abuse and not agreeing with your DD's course of medication is not in her best interest. If he wants to do what's best for her, he needs to grow up and start working WITH you instead of against you.

troutsprout Mon 03-Dec-12 10:57:44

Let her move in with him .... See how it goes.
Those words sound so flippant and non-caring and I don't mean them to be because I can understand the turmoil it could cause for you- her mum. BUT....it seems to me that they are all backing you into a corner and all are determined to prove that you are the one in the wrong.
Does she really want this? To move home and schools and friendships etcetera? Does she seem to really get what it entails?
If so then Tbh...it seems to me that it could be a good thing.
He is her father at the end of the day. Let him have 24/7 week in week out responsibility ... Lol- it ain't no 'holiday' is it !

queencat Mon 03-Dec-12 10:15:43

We were together for six years the one day he upped and left turned out he had someone else. I don't know how to get through to him that I'm not making it up its not me she really does behave like that. He keeps accusing me of child abuse in the sense that I am 'allowing doctors to prod and poke at her' his words.

When she went on hols with him she was fine when she went with me she was a fucking nightmare.
She keeps screaming at me she wants to live there buy surely that will screw her up even more?

I want to give her the Ritalin but can't tell him.

ChippingInLovesAutumn Mon 03-Dec-12 10:09:48

Let the twat take you to court - what are they going to say if you are giving your daughter doctor prescribed drugs? He is just going to look like the twat he is.

You don't seem to be hearing what people are saying... give him more time with her, it will soon change things.

How long were you with this twat, he's done a right number on your self confidence my love and still has you where he wants you - completely doubting yourself sad

Dd is MUCH better behaved at her Grandparents at the weekend, they never say no, she gets lots of treats because she's not seen them all week, she can play on the internet for hours.

She's given no reason to play up. At home she has chores, is not allowed endless Internet or all her own way and is told no.

She doesn't hate me even though she has said she does.

ChristmasTreegles Mon 03-Dec-12 10:00:27

First of all, I very much doubt that he can take you to court if you give her Ritalin. If the paed has prescribed it, and you feel it's warranted, then it's your decision. He can choose not to give it to her on the weekends he has her. Perhaps a week's trial to see if it makes any difference while she is with you? The paed is not going to prescribe Ritalin for her if it weren't something they felt would help.

queencat Mon 03-Dec-12 09:29:17

Her reading and understanding are ok but her writing is appalling. She has been observed at school hence the diagnosis but they will not diagnose ASD at this time. She is not naughty at school just a bit restless and finds concentrating hard.

It's now got to the stage where I'm doubting myself maybe there is nothing wrong it is as my ex says my lack of control and my instability following him leaving me.

Ineedalife Mon 03-Dec-12 09:02:57

Really feel for you queen,
Dd1 was very similar when she was young. She would behave completely differently for her dad when he had her for odd days.

He never understood what she could be like at home, biting, kicking, screaming at me.

I have no idea what the answer is, are you getting any support anywhere else. What is she like at school??

queencat Mon 03-Dec-12 08:44:15

To add I've been prescribed Ritalin but as the ex does not believe there is anything wrong he says he'll take me to court if I drug her.

queencat Mon 03-Dec-12 08:16:51

Unfortunately he does not live nearby so it would mean changing schools etc. the eldest child is not his so when dd goes she is 2 on 2 as he is with his partner, I am 1 vs 3.

I think she hates me because she is so awful around me and I can't seem to control her behaviour where as he can.

I'm at the end of my tether with it all really. I'm so exhausted and so sad I get very little pleasure out of being a parent.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now