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To wonder if it's adhd or just plain naughtiness

(78 Posts)
Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 22:35:21

My son has just started school and seems to have run into trouble immediately. Not listening, jumping up from his seat, pushing his chair around. Today he spat at a classroom assistant ☹️ The teacher has started a book with stickers that comes home with every day, writing his behaviours each day so I can see how is he doing. He has had problems with childminders before - in fact two have cited difficulties with him as a reason for quitting. We also had constant problems at his nursery when he started at 2.5 years - hitting other kids, being overly boisterous in play - although his preschool teacher said he made great progress in the year with her ( he was part-time in the afternoons as I was on maternity leave so I think I had some of his energy worn off by the time he went in). But then other times he is good as gold, can play be himself, his new nanny thinks he is a lovely warm living boy ( though school may have him tired out for her?) Its an awful thought but is he just a naughty kid? Are we failing as parents? My husband is not a natural disciplinarian and would get more annoyed with the people raising the behaviour than the behaviour itself. I find myself getting shouty and struggle not to lose my temper with him sometimes, always biting my tongue. I just feeling a bit hopeless today.

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 22:36:16

Loads of typos there, I hope you can work out what I mean..

converseandjeans Thu 12-Oct-17 22:42:16

Sorry but he sounds like a handful. You need to avoid shouting/getting cross and chat to him. DH needs to be firmer. You are setting him up to fail in the school setting unless you work on things. How much time do you and DH spend with him? You mentioned a nanny. He needs lots of firm boundaries but also lots of praise and positive attention.

x2boys Thu 12-Oct-17 22:48:33

My son has autism and learning disabilities not adhd, but I have a friend whose son has autism and adhd she says to be diagnosed with adhd the child needs to present like that in all situations,what do school think? maybe they could get the education psychologist to assess him?

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 22:49:05

I work full time, out of the house 8.15 to 6.45. Dh's hours are irregular, often working late, sometimes working from home. I know I need to work with him, I don't want him to be known as the "naughty boy" and struggle socially. The teacher says he has friends but I don't want that to change. Tonight I just feel exhausted and depressed at seeing his report (also exhausted from aforesaid job and non-sleeping wheezy baby).

manicinsomniac Thu 12-Oct-17 22:52:22

No possible way of knowing just from what you have said.

If you and the school both have concerns it's probably worth getting him assessed. If there's no ADHD then you haven't lost anything by investigating and can move forward with strategies with a peaceful mind.

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 22:53:24

School says too early to be talking about such things ( I was called in last week to discuss "things they could do to motivate good behaviour"). He has a cousin with adhd/asd. I know adhd can be hereditary.Funny enough when I was looking up adhd, I read something about inattentive adhd and it was the first thing that felt like it described my scattered brain which I've had since childhood. That could just be the sleep deprivation talking though!

converseandjeans Thu 12-Oct-17 22:54:49

Sorry if this sounds harsh but he sounds like he needs more input and attention. You only see him end of the day when you're all exhausted. I know this isn't helpful or what you want to hear. He is asking for some attention but in the only way he knows I.e. acting up. Are you able to work less?

Stargirl82 Thu 12-Oct-17 22:55:05

How old is he? Speak to class teacher about your concerns and if they are unsure ask to speak to SENCO at school. They can fill out various observation forms and request an appt with the ed psych in needed.

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 22:55:18

He's also on the young side for his class. Which isn't helping because I know adhd is diagnosed more in those who are younger. I wouldn't want adhd misdiagnosed when it's simply immaturity mixed with a hyper personality (although spitting is more than being hyper).

Jellycatspyjamas Thu 12-Oct-17 22:59:46

If he's just started school is he only 4? I'm amazed at the standard of behaviour we expect from tiny children - they aren't built to sit at desks and listen at that age. You may find that he just needs time with you and your DH, your working day is so long I wonder when you do have time to spend with him just playing or being with him. If he knows you'll respond to naughty behaviour I guess that's what he'll do. I honestly don't mean that as a criticism - it's not easy by any means but he might just be struggling with the transition into school with all that that entails and need some time with you to help him feel secure again.

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 23:00:02

Dh often has a day off with them here or there (although the flip side is he is often working late or has a weekend job). I would be the more stable breadwinner but am considering asking for a 9 day fortnight. I'm not in the UK though and flexible working is neither a right nor would I say it is usual. In our company there certainly isn't a precedent for it at senior management level. Our hours aren't so bad for our salaries and I can work from home after the kids are in bed (when I'm not too tired).

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 23:01:25

Oh sorry just realised why people saying the hours are long! I'm actually back at 5.45, not 6.45! For full time I don't think it's so bad (compared to what my hours used to be..,)

catbas Thu 12-Oct-17 23:04:14

I would get a psychologist in personally, my friends child is like this and he is not nice to be around (sorry) and my son and most of the other kids shy away from him 😔 They think he is just a bit "challenging" but he is beyond that so haven't taken it any further so well done for taking it seriously as that will benefit him in the long run I'm sure. I would be looking for possible mechanisms rather than a diagnosis as that will be more useful at the moment I'm guessing, to see if you can come up with a way you're both happy with to deal with it. I would be saving up to go private if one is not offered on NHS as this is not something you want to leave alone.

converseandjeans Thu 12-Oct-17 23:05:22

For a six year old 5.45 is quite late. When do you relax and chat with him? Ask him about his day? Does he have same nanny or do they leave and he has new ones?

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 23:12:42

We relax and chat about his day in the 2 hours between coming home and going to bed. Nanny is new, minder we had after my second maternity bailed after 4 months. Before that he was in Creche/preschool for 2 years, before that, minder. New Nanny is actually great for exhaustion, as she does all laundry, cooking for them so I can actually just sit on the floor with them when I get home and not worry about cooking while juggling unput downable baby.

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 23:14:23

Also, I might be taking it seriously but my dh is not. I think we have different expectations for behaviour. He thinks the school is unreasonable, or the Creche was unreasonable etc etc

LucieLucie Thu 12-Oct-17 23:15:27

Could he be sensitive to food colourings and E numbers?

My advice would be to keep a behaviour/food diary every day. See if there’s a link.

Keep your reactions to his bad behaviour calm and consistent every time.

Reward the good and try and spend one on one quiet time with him every day.

It gets harder to deal with the older they get and I’m afraid if it’s not nipped in the bud before secondary school, it’s all but too late to change anything.

Wolfiefan Thu 12-Oct-17 23:16:58

You need to have consistent expectations.
You need to agree strategies and consequences for poor behaviour.
Not once have you actually said how you handle the behaviour you don't want. Perhaps that's the place to start.

Ttbb Thu 12-Oct-17 23:17:10

Maybe the school isn't being strict enough? Clever children often figure out how far they can push it before getting into serious trouble and take advantage atcwill.

LucieLucie Thu 12-Oct-17 23:20:00

Your husband being passive will not help in the long run.

His sons behaviour has stood out immediately at School and was already a problem with other childcare professionals. These people all have great experience of children and wide ranges of behaviour.

I’d suggest your dh pulls his head out the sand now and acknowledges there’s a problem.

He absolutely needs to be on board 200% on the joint parenting from the same page at home.

converseandjeans Thu 12-Oct-17 23:21:37

What is he like at home? Does he behave well? I think turnover of main carer could be main issue. So if you work long hours but have same nanny from birth he would find that easier. Your DH needs to take it more seriously. Does he spend quality time with him? Swimming? Bike rides? Footie?

Jellycatspyjamas Thu 12-Oct-17 23:26:18

How old is he? My 4 year old wouldn't be able to stay away until 8.00pm on a school night - he's in bed around 7.00 and sleeps a full 12 hours. In fact he was in bed at 6.30 tonight after just about falling asleep in his dinner. My 6 year old is in bed by 7.30 and towards the end of the school week they're both exhausted. Could he just be knackered? Maybe trying earlier nights and a calm bedtime routine - at his age it's not deliberate behaviour so looking for what you might change at home is a good place to start before thinking of diagnosis.

He's had a lot of change and a new nanny to adjust to. I'd be looking at sleep, diet, closeness and time with parents, is he feeling displaced by the new baby perhaps?

In short there are lots of things going on for him that would cause any small child to act out, look at helping him with those and then see about diagnosis.

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 23:30:12

Turnover of carer is an issue I've been stressed over, yes. I always thought I would have the same minder the whole way along, like I've had but it didn't work out that way 🙁 I did a bad job there. My biggest worry for my son is that he will have addiction or criminal issues when he's older, there has been some alcoholism/addiction issues on both sides of the family, and also crime on dh's side, and now it seems like it could be coming true. But maybe I'm catastrophising, he's only 4 after all. I need to go to sleep now or I'll have no energy for anything. And ask for that day off so I can at least set up play dates, watch him socially... he can be so sweet, and he is so happy when he sees I'm pleased when he has a good day at school. One day he got a little award for good behaviour and he fell asleep holding it bless him. He talks about his good heart and his bad heart, he told me a few days ago that his bad heart had gone away and then he has a day like today in school

Phuquocdreams Thu 12-Oct-17 23:32:14

His sleep is also a problem. He goes to bed at 8 with a view to waking at 7.40 or so (he's always been a 10.5 - 11 hour sleeper) but it takes him over an hour or more to get to sleep.

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