+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 27
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    45

    What to do about ex not giving meds?

    What is the name of your state? NY

    Hello,

    My son has been diagnosed with ADHD, and his father refuses to believe that he has any problem (though he has not attended even one appointment to the psychiatrist or therapist), so in consequence, does not give our son his medication as ordered. We have 50/50 custody (both physical and legal). Every time I pick up my son for his time with me, I find out that he is missing assignments from school, and is behind on a number of things like projects that he should have started already, and reading. He also refuses to practice his instrument - which my ex insists that he takes - even though he does not want to. By the way, our son is 11. I have tried talking with my ex, but he just blows me off. I am planning on getting ahold of the psychiatrist and asking for a note, requesting that he have his med at school in the morning. While I have no problem giving him his medication, he almost always misses it when at his dad's house. I believe simply having him take it at the school all the time, might get rid of this problem.

    I know that my following issue is probably considered insignificant, but I am concerned about my son, because he complains to me that he is always tired, that he gets to bed around 11 pm at his father's house, because he has no set bedtime there. He also c/o stomach problems, which we have had him on medication for, and the MD stated he should eat a few hours before bed, not right before bed. Unfortunately, I often call to say goodnight to my son, and find out that at 9 pm they are just eating fast food takeout. If he continues to have medical problems (which I believe are related to poor eating habits and poor sleeping), and if a doctor agrees with me, is it reasonable to go back to court to get something in our custody agreement about these issues (his father not giving meds as ordered, and not feeding him or putting him to bed at a reasonable time). I know these are piddly issues. We have never had to go back to court, and have in general had no problems that have required me to consider going back to court. I am simply tired of hearing my son complain. He says horrible things about his father, and often says he wants to live with me (however he also has a 13 year old sister who wants to remain 50/50). I would love for things to remain 50/50 if he would simply try a little harder to do what the doctors see is best for our child.

    Any thoughts?
  2. #2
    CJane is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    19,827
    Honestly? At 11, your son is old enough to be tasked with both taking his own meds AND getting to bed when he's tired.

    My kids are 7 and 10 and they are responsible for their daily allergy meds, their 'when needed' meds, and their bedtime/bathtime/homework.

    I understand your child is ADHD, but really, he should be capable of handling his own things more and more.
  3. #3
    Silverplum is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Grand Junction, CO
    Posts
    25,566
    Quote Originally Posted by CJane View Post
    Honestly? At 11, your son is old enough to be tasked with both taking his own meds AND getting to bed when he's tired.

    My kids are 7 and 10 and they are responsible for their daily allergy meds, their 'when needed' meds, and their bedtime/bathtime/homework.

    I understand your child is ADHD, but really, he should be capable of handling his own things more and more.
    Yep. 11 is more than old enough.

    And, dangit, WHY are we discussing this AGAIN?
    [url]http://forum.freeadvice.com/showthread.php?p=1683489#post1683489[/url]
    Last edited by Silverplum; 10-11-2007 at 02:58 PM.
  4. #4
    CJane is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    19,827
    Quote Originally Posted by Silverplum View Post
    Yep. 11 is more than old enough.

    And, dangit, WHY are we discussing this AGAIN?
    [url]http://forum.freeadvice.com/showthread.php?p=1683489#post1683489[/url]
    Well lookee there, posts from yours truly, explaining very clearly (if I do say so myself) what OP should do if just such an occasion happens.
  5. #5
    casa is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    In the Vortex <CA>
    Posts
    7,121
    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse at Heart View Post
    What is the name of your state? NY

    Hello,

    My son has been diagnosed with ADHD, and his father refuses to believe that he has any problem (though he has not attended even one appointment to the psychiatrist or therapist), so in consequence, does not give our son his medication as ordered. We have 50/50 custody (both physical and legal). Every time I pick up my son for his time with me, I find out that he is missing assignments from school, and is behind on a number of things like projects that he should have started already, and reading. He also refuses to practice his instrument - which my ex insists that he takes - even though he does not want to. By the way, our son is 11. I have tried talking with my ex, but he just blows me off. I am planning on getting ahold of the psychiatrist and asking for a note, requesting that he have his med at school in the morning. While I have no problem giving him his medication, he almost always misses it when at his dad's house. I believe simply having him take it at the school all the time, might get rid of this problem.

    I know that my following issue is probably considered insignificant, but I am concerned about my son, because he complains to me that he is always tired, that he gets to bed around 11 pm at his father's house, because he has no set bedtime there. He also c/o stomach problems, which we have had him on medication for, and the MD stated he should eat a few hours before bed, not right before bed. Unfortunately, I often call to say goodnight to my son, and find out that at 9 pm they are just eating fast food takeout. If he continues to have medical problems (which I believe are related to poor eating habits and poor sleeping), and if a doctor agrees with me, is it reasonable to go back to court to get something in our custody agreement about these issues (his father not giving meds as ordered, and not feeding him or putting him to bed at a reasonable time). I know these are piddly issues. We have never had to go back to court, and have in general had no problems that have required me to consider going back to court. I am simply tired of hearing my son complain. He says horrible things about his father, and often says he wants to live with me (however he also has a 13 year old sister who wants to remain 50/50). I would love for things to remain 50/50 if he would simply try a little harder to do what the doctors see is best for our child.

    Any thoughts?
    Taking his medication at school would help the issue with his Dad not giving it to him...but it's also cutting it pretty close in terms of stabilizing/medication absorbtion, etc. Just to let the teacher know that the first part of the day may be rocky.

    Not giving prescribed medication is certainly a reason to modify Custody/Visitation. I would consider talking to Dad about that. All the child's school records will reflect if he is not consistently on his meds. They will also reflect if his academics are falling, homework is not being turned in on those days, etc.
  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    45
    Hi all,

    First I want to address something.

    Honestly? At 11, your son is old enough to be tasked with both taking his own meds AND getting to bed when he's tired.

    My kids are 7 and 10 and they are responsible for their daily allergy meds, their 'when needed' meds, and their bedtime/bathtime/homework.

    I understand your child is ADHD, but really, he should be capable of handling his own things more and more.
    Here is where you and I (as well as many doctors whom I have talked with about this very subject) differ on what you feel an 11 year old with ADHD (which by definition means that he is inattentive and has a hard time focusing) can or should be responsible for. Essentially you are telling me that my son should be responsible for his things, and for taking his medication. Perhaps when it has become more of a routine for him, it may be easier for him to be responsible to do so. At this point, when he has the medication for 5 days, then is off it for two, back on for two, then off for 5, it certainly shows in his ability to read, comprehend, and stay focused enough to organize his things. So if he is unable to stay focused and organized without the help of the medication, you expect him to be responsible for taking his own meds without his father having to supervise? Do you also not check to see if your child has done their homework? How do you know if your child (particularly a 7 year old) has taken their medication. Are their medications in a separate container for each of them, so their medications can't get mixed up? I have taken care of many of children in the Emergency room who's parents "allow" them to be responsible to take their medications, and have gotten an accidental overdose of someone else's medication. This is something I would never advise, nor would the doctors of my hospital.

    What do children have parents for, if not to guide them, and teach them? If my ex can not be responsible to supervise them (his falling asleep in front of the TV, and allowing them to play video games or be on the computer until all hours, or even watch tv until they get tired enough to fall asleep) what is he there for? If he can't check to see if their homework is done, or to see if the teacher has sent him a note, again I ask, what is he there for. Do my children need to raise themselves while they are with him? I would like my children to grow up to be independent, however, allowing them to be up until 11 pm, when they have to catch a bus in the morning at 6 45 am, is certainly not helping them. Often they are just getting home between 9 and 10 pm, then he allows them to watch tv, and then get a shower before bed. They also often skip breakfast because their father doesn't wake them up in the morning in time to have it.

    Perhaps I am naive, but I believe parents are supposed to teach their children good habits and be good role models.



    Hello Casa,

    I have tried talking with "dad" about it. He refuses to budge. He won't "make" our son take his medication. Our son has asked him, numerous times to come and talk with the psychiatrist or therapist when he has an appointment, but his dad refuses to do so. I have tried talking with my son, about trying to get him to be responsible to take his meds without prompting, but even at my house I have to prompt him (and have often had to give it to him on the way out the door) because he simply does not remember on his own. The school nurse stated that many kids take their meds like that (in the morning at school). While I agree that the medication would be better if it were in his system for an hour before school as that seems to be the time when Concerta reaches it's therapeutic effect, if I can't get his father to remind him to take it, what option do I have? I remember CJane telling me to doccument and then take him back to court, however this is only a month or so into school, and surely not enough time to show a clear pattern. Does my son have to get to where he is miserable and feels depressed (and perhaps suicidal) before I can have any hope that the court system will help me? My ex's refusal to believe that our son has any problem manifests itself by destroying my son's self esteem. His father tells him he is simply lazy and not trying hard enough. My son believe's that, tries harder (which the psychiatrist states, without medication, makes the ADHD worse), and fails, making him feel like a failure. How far do I have to let my son sink before I can reasonably expect the courts to intervene?

    Sorry for writing a book, but I don't see the system as very helpful for children who have mental illness.

    Thank you for listening.
  7. #7
    Bloopy is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    1,343
    Whether or not your son takes Concerta may be open for debate. Since you share legal with the father certainly he has a “say.” Plenty of children “qualify” for ADHD meds and their parents still choose not to medicate. While I feel that true ADHD benefits greatly from meds, I don’t think he’s a jerk for not wanting to do it. What really stinks for your son is being on and off Concerta.

    You two must come to an agreement. I suggest going to mediation on this. Entertain the possibility of NOT medicating. You are being as stubborn as he is if you are not willing to hear his cons. Even though you are a nurse, you do not trump dad.

    I have seen ADHD meds given at school for consistency. In some of the cases, the parents have meant well, but honestly many kids with ADHD have parents with ADHD too. A fast acting pill for the morning and an extended release after lunch usually does the trick. It’s helpful if in his classroom his Language Arts is delayed for 45 min to an hour after school starts. Find out from his teacher if this is possible. If he is in middle school a puff class in the morning would be perfect. The big con here is that most children on this regimen have no appetite for lunch and end up scawny… offer him a huge snack.

    Lighten up on the bedtime and other talk. It makes you sound pushy and silly. This really robs you of credibility on the bigger issue. Your son is old enough to go to bed at a reasonable time and do his homework. If not, he can suffer the natural consequences.

    I don’t think handling controlled substances should be up to a child so I’m with you on that one. Concerta fetches a good price among teens. I’ve known youth to crush and snort it. It can be dissolved into cigarettes and smoked. I love working in the mental health field.
  8. #8
    JacobJoel is offline Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hicksville NM
    Posts
    487
    Can you call your son daily while he is at his dad's house, a specific time, and he can take the med while he is on the phone?

    i have a lot of background (non-medical) on add/adhd, it is a focus problem caused in the brain when the neuro-transmitters are either over transmitting (hyper) or under transmitting (daydreaming).

    believe it or not, working simple math on a graduated time scale (five minutes for a week or so, 7 minutes, etc.) can do wonders. Math generates more 'brain working' activity, per capita, then any other activity a person can do. the goal is 30 minutes of focus math. there is a name for this but i can't remember, if you are interested i will dig it up.

    if dad can be convinced that jr. needs to work on his math skills (or even if you can get the school to work with you on this) you might see a lot of improvement w/in a month or so. it could be a 'bonding' time for dad as in the beginning it helps if someone is working/encouraging the activity.

    writing out the addition/subtraction/multiplication/division tables while saying them aloud is the easiest way to go.

    i have the research to back this up. i have worked w/three kids, pre-teen this way and they all improved. they were all from divorced homes and there was tension between the homes as well.
  9. #9
    JacobJoel is offline Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hicksville NM
    Posts
    487

    i'm just dense

    i looked at the thread SP provided and good grief cj! you should just write the book already!

    Divorce/Custody Tips for the Lost and Desparate.

    you would be a millionaire w/the first printing.
  10. #10
    CJane is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    19,827
    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse at Heart View Post
    Do you also not check to see if your child has done their homework?
    I ask my kids if they've completed their homework. If I have time, I spot check for accuracy. I do not hound them, nor do I follow them around making sure they've completed tasks they routinely need to complete. They're both A/B students.

    How do you know if your child (particularly a 7 year old) has taken their medication.
    Because if she doesn't, she feels like crap all day long. And when she gets home in the evening and says "Hey I felt like crap all day long" I say "Then you didn't take your meds. Take your meds, you won't feel like crap." She forgets about 2x/month (the 7 year old) the 10 year old takes hers when she needs them - by checking the pollen and ozone numbers on the news. We HAD to institute this ... policy ... because their father will NOT ensure that they take meds on his time (2 days every week). So the children became responsible for their own needs/monitoring their own meds.

    Are their medications in a separate container for each of them, so their medications can't get mixed up?
    They take exactly the same meds. Claritin D, Rhinocort, and Afrin as needed.

    I have taken care of many of children in the Emergency room who's parents "allow" them to be responsible to take their medications, and have gotten an accidental overdose of someone else's medication.
    Weird. My kids have NEVER, not once, even come close to taking the wrong thing, or taking too much of the right thing. They've been tasked with remembering their meds since they were 3 and 5 and with administering their own meds since they were 6. And that includes when my now 10 year old was on Sudafed 3X/day, Claritin 2X/day, Tagamet 4X/day, Afrin 3X/day and Rhinocort 2X/day. I wrote down in a notebook when she should take each medication (before lunch/after breakfast/before bed/etc) and she checked off what she'd taken. Easy peasy.


    What do children have parents for, if not to guide them, and teach them?
    How do you propose they learn, if not by doing/dealing with consequences?

    A friend of mine had custody of her 8 year old grandson who suffered from ADHD as well as PDD. HE was tasked with taking his own meds. He was known for calling his grandmother from the school and reminding HER to refill his scrip. And if SHE forgot, in the rush of getting ready, he'd say "Gramma, if I don't take my pills, I'm not gonna have a good day at school"

    If my ex can not be responsible to supervise them (his falling asleep in front of the TV, and allowing them to play video games or be on the computer until all hours, or even watch tv until they get tired enough to fall asleep) what is he there for?
    Parenting choices.

    If he can't check to see if their homework is done, or to see if the teacher has sent him a note, again I ask, what is he there for. Do my children need to raise themselves while they are with him?
    Your 11 year old can't say "hey dad, Mrs X sent something home that you need to read"?

    I would like my children to grow up to be independent, however, allowing them to be up until 11 pm, when they have to catch a bus in the morning at 6 45 am, is certainly not helping them.
    Why can't your 11 year old determine for himself that he's tired? His dad isn't FORCING him to stay up, is he? Do you not understand personal responsibility/natural consequences at all?

    Often they are just getting home between 9 and 10 pm, then he allows them to watch tv, and then get a shower before bed.
    Sounds like my house on 4-H nights... or if we go to the stable after school, or when we decided dinner out would be nice... or a hundred other reasons we're home late. Would you prefer he didn't shower? If my 10 year old doesn't shower, there's no amount of deodorant that's gonna win her a free pass into my car in the morning.

    They also often skip breakfast because their father doesn't wake them up in the morning in time to have it.
    Suggest granola bars. Or... can't they eat at school?

    Or... my kids DIG instant breakfast. Comes in a can. Easy peasy. Use it to wash down their meds too.
  11. #11
    CJane is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kansas City
    Posts
    19,827
    I'm a bit confused by this though... from the thread this summer...

    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse at Heart View Post
    Hi Singlemom67,

    My son is 11 years old and yes I think he is mature enough to take his own medicine. I also think that I could give the medicine to the school nurse and have her dispense it - but would rather that he took it earlier so that it wears off when it is supposed to, not a few hours later because he had to take it at 8 am or later instead of 0630. I know I had thought of the school nurse as a way to avoid much of this, but if he wanted to, he could go tell the school nurse that he does not agree with our son having the medication. I guess I should not borrow trouble.
    He was mature enough THEN... but not so much NOW.
  12. #12
    casa is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    In the Vortex <CA>
    Posts
    7,121
    Quote Originally Posted by Nurse at Heart View Post

    Hello Casa,

    I have tried talking with "dad" about it. He refuses to budge. He won't "make" our son take his medication. Our son has asked him, numerous times to come and talk with the psychiatrist or therapist when he has an appointment, but his dad refuses to do so. I have tried talking with my son, about trying to get him to be responsible to take his meds without prompting, but even at my house I have to prompt him (and have often had to give it to him on the way out the door) because he simply does not remember on his own. The school nurse stated that many kids take their meds like that (in the morning at school). While I agree that the medication would be better if it were in his system for an hour before school as that seems to be the time when Concerta reaches it's therapeutic effect, if I can't get his father to remind him to take it, what option do I have? I remember CJane telling me to doccument and then take him back to court, however this is only a month or so into school, and surely not enough time to show a clear pattern. Does my son have to get to where he is miserable and feels depressed (and perhaps suicidal) before I can have any hope that the court system will help me? My ex's refusal to believe that our son has any problem manifests itself by destroying my son's self esteem. His father tells him he is simply lazy and not trying hard enough. My son believe's that, tries harder (which the psychiatrist states, without medication, makes the ADHD worse), and fails, making him feel like a failure. How far do I have to let my son sink before I can reasonably expect the courts to intervene?

    Sorry for writing a book, but I don't see the system as very helpful for children who have mental illness.

    Thank you for listening.
    Fill out the appropriate paperwork for your son to take his meds at school. If Dad complains...have him do something about it. (his time, his money) If he tries to enforce Joint Legal status over it, file to modify to Sole Legal. Whether or not it is granted <and it can be> Dad will learn the important lesson of cooperating re; Medical, Educational &/or Legal decisions re; the child.

    Just let son know that he will be taking meds at school in the a.m. and that way won't have to remember at both houses.

    Consistency is SO important to this disorder. Making the child's days/schedule as similar as possible at both houses is the ultimate goal...whether Dad cooperates or not, do your part to head off any roadblocks for your child- you know them better than anyone else.

    Depression is very common in pre-adolescent & adolescent ADHD kids. It's a sense of feeling different and all the rest you probably know by now. Having him more organized, protected or planned with/for will help that. The more stable he is, the better he will do. The better he does, the better he will feel about himself. Address these specific issues with his therapist & ask that the therapist discuss them with your son. Then ask to meet with the therapist to consult with him yourself. All that will turn into documentation re; what is really in your son's best interest.

    Also, I do want to comment that it's very true that ADHD kids can be socially 'younger' than their peers...often not exhibiting appropriate social awareness/behavior to their age. Hygiene <like depression> can also be an issue.
  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    45
    Hello CJane,

    I wanted to clarify what you say you don't understand about my post this summer, and now. Back in the summer, my son was excited about taking the medication, and it was the first thing he would do upon getting up for breakfast. The change of routine with going to school, and the fact that his father continuously tells him that he does not need the medication, has gotten him out of the habit of taking the medication while at his fathers house. I thought my son was ready this summer to be responsible to take his own medication (although I expected him to need frequent reminders at first, until he developed a routine). Unfortunately, he has not been responsible enough. He will even go so far as to lie to me and tell me he has taken his med, and when I check (count the pills), I find that he hasn't. I guess I was overly optimistic when stating he would/could be responsible for taking his own meds. So yes, that has changed. The sarcasm on this board is unbelievable.

    Casa,

    Thank you for your time and patience. I appreciate your advice. My son has a therapy appointment in two weeks. He was tasked with asking his father to come to the next therapy appointment (by the therapist), and he has told me that his father has said no. I will talk with the therapist about this. They have been focusing on self esteem issues (as far as I know anyhow) in therapy. I will also ask about the consistency (I truly know how important this is, yet unfortunately, no one has yet to convince my ex).


    JacobJoel,

    Thanks for your response. My son is very bright when it comes to math and science (and actually enjoys math). For a few years in his earlier education (I believe 3rd and 4th grade), he was in advanced math. His school had identified that he needed advanced structure, and ever since Pre-K we have been trying behavioral therapy and time/organizational strategies with the help of the school. Unfortunately, these have been unsuccessful. My son is very smart, but unable (when unmedicated) to focus long enough to read and comprehend. All the math in the world was not helping him with the reading and comprehension issues. He has been tested, and at this point, no learning disabilities have been identified. I wish I could call my son every morning to get him to take his medication, however, I can not guarantee that when I am at work in the ER, that I will have time to call him at the same time every morning. I work in a trauma center, and never know when things are going to be chaotic.

    Thanks again all.
  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    45
    Hi Bloopy,

    I wanted to point out that I don't think my ex is a jerk for not wanting our son to have medication. What I am upset at is his agreeing to give them, then changing his mind, after our son has already been on the med for 4 months or more. To me, he is being passive aggressive. He will not discuss this issue with me, even though I have tried to talk with him about it. I realize that the issue of medication is a controversial one. I just wanted to say that we have tried other interventions, many in fact, over the years, and they are no longer helpful. I have entertained the idea of not medicating for 6 years, and finally have decided that it was time to get help, before my son became truly suicidal. Many things have gotten better for him with the medication.

    I know the side effects of the medication, and he is not having any problems with his appetite (except when he first started the med, and when he has a dosage increase).

    I agree that I should lighten up about the bedtime and mealtime issue. I just hate to see my children in pain (reflux and biliary colic are not easy to deal with as adults, much less as children), and when they are eating fatty foods late, they end up in pain. I guess they could try again asking their father to feed them earlier, or make themselves sandwiches before they go out for girl/boy scout meetings, or soccer practice.

    Thanks for your response.
  15. #15
    JacobJoel is offline Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hicksville NM
    Posts
    487
    my apologies. i didn't meant to imply stopping the meds and this really isn't about behavioral modification. it's about focus.

    the repetitious working of simple math requires the brain to focus, when this happens for extended amounts of time (it's cumulative) it has long term beneficial effects.

    it is not a 'cure', it is merely an assist.

    and it does work. i'm trying to find my paperwork as i can't remember what it is called.

    anyway, seems you have done everything there is to do, by your response to those who have offered suggestions, so i doubt i would have anything to add that would work.

Similar Threads

  1. What more can I do if my ex isn't giving meds to our child
    By aliachase2007 in forum Child Custody & Visitation
    Replies: 38
    Last Post: 04-19-2011, 10:25 AM
  2. ex not giving daughter her meds
    By mmsmom in forum Child Custody & Visitation
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 01-04-2010, 06:50 PM
  3. forced meds & neglect to give meds
    By voices in forum Medical and Health Care Malpractice
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 08-22-2006, 04:57 AM
  4. CP not giving child prescription meds.
    By sbaldwin in forum Child Custody & Visitation
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-27-2003, 02:37 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

© 1995-2012 Advice Company, All Rights Reserved

FreeAdvice® has been providing millions of consumers with outstanding advice, free, since 1995. While not a substitute for personal advice from a licensed professional, it is available AS IS, subject to our Disclaimer and Terms & Conditions Of Use.