with my DH and his ex who I will call BM (as in biological mom) in regards to my oldest stepson (SS). He was diagnosed with ADHD at 4 by a family physician. At that age, the pedi didn't want to "label" him and so BM sought out a family physician that "specialized" in ADHD treatment to get him diagnosed and then switched pedi and the new pedi has been prescribing the meds ever since.
Since then more and more behaviors have popped up and DH and began to think that either he is on the spectrum or has sensory issues tied with other emotional issues. We finally got BM convinced a few years ago to take him to the neuropsychologist that diagnosed DD but when the appointment was made we were told our insurance was out of network and it would be about $2500 OOP for the testing. BM backed out at that point. I never post much about his issues because since I'm only the step-parent and can't force DH or BM to do anything about it. I feel like there's no point in posting about it because I can only help with the behaviors I know how to help with from my experience with DD but they have very different behaviors in most ways. I had previously told DH that until he and BM dealt with the issues that I would no longer try to help him when SS was having a meltdown because if I had any authority in the matter he would have been tested at least through the school district long ago.
SS has horrible tantrums and meltdowns. He throws stuff, curses, tells everyone he hates them, wants to go to jail, ect. Then cries because he wants you to give him a hug for bed and then when you go to give him one he says "no, I hate you." However, when he's not in the midst of one of these tantrums he would never say any of these things. He is a very sweet boy. He destroys all of his toys and doesn't and has never played with toys correctly. He has grinded down all the corners on the window frames in his room. He's a straight A student. Although he was recieved in school suspension and was suspended from school in 2nd grade for a violent meltdowns. One was for throwing his shoe at his teacher because he didn't want to go to lunch that day and one was for throwing a tantrum and hitting his teacher when he realized he wasn't going on the field trip with his younger brother even though BM had discussed that with him before he got to school. Those 2 issues aside, he has had zero problems at school and since he's a straight A student the school had seemed unconcerned. He just switched school districts 2 weeks ago though, when BM moved closer to us.
He is an extremely picky eater and refuses flat out to eat sometimes, but then will go and sneak food out of the fridge or pantry. His pedi has him on an appetite inducing medication (can't remember the name). He's actually on 3 meds, the appetite med, Methylin and another drug that is frequently used with Methylin to try to get him to sleep at night. He has sleeping issues. He frequently wakes in the middle of the night and gets up and plays and that is when he sneaks random food too. We have notes hanging up at our house to try to remind him to get a bowl of cereal if he gets hungry instead of stealing random food. He steals things from the girls in the middle of the night so we had to put a lock on their door (with a key entry for us) and a lock on their side so he couldn't get into their room. When he was younger he was sneaking out of the house into the backyard until we put an alarm there. We have an motion alarm on his bedroom door that chimes but sometimes we sleep through it. It has an option for an extremely loud alarm but that alarm is way too loud and he has sensory issues to loud noises and it would wake the entire house. When we go to sporting events he either wears headphones, covers his ears or wears and ear covering hat because of the buzzers and crowd noise. He also does the same with thunder. He acts like a 4-5 year old. He puts everything in his mouth. He chews his toys, picks up lint from the carpet, paper, trash, practically anything and puts it in his mouth. He has access to gum at all times to try to prevent it. He cannot seem to regulate his voice and is loud most of the time. Has practically zero eye contact.
He just has so much going on and I've been trying to get him help for so long but DH and BM just deal with this and know something is wrong but never did anything about it. He has these behaviors at both houses because they've been discussed at length between DH and BM many times. Anyway what basically happened was that a friend of mine posted on FB that a friend of hers is a graduate psychology student at local university and a big project they needed kids to perform emotional, cognitive, behavioral and academic tests on and if anyone needed this testing for their child to contact her and it would be free. So I made the contact. My friend put me in touch with her friend that was the graduate student. That student than put me in touch with another student because they had gotten a large response. So once that person contacted me back I directed her to my DH since I have no legal authority. Today, the woman explained their testing process which will consist of a parent interview, observations in 2 settings (structured and unstructred), and interview with the child, an interview with his teacher, then assessments for cognitive function, processing, fluid reasoning, long/short term memory, academic, and social/emotional functioning and other tests as indicated. DH contacted BM and she is on board. I cannot believe this is happening. I am in shock. I am so happy we might finally nail down what is causing his problems. I was fearing the teenage years because of the unknown and that fact that things seem to be getting worse rather than better with him.