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Question
Posted by: Tammy | 2004/03/09

stepson and his moms relationships

My stepson is living w/his mom.She has moved him 3 times since he has been 5.He is now 9 and has been in 3 diff. schools.He has ADHD and was diagnosed with adjustment disorder the last move she made.She blamed that on their divorce and had his therapist write it that way although the psy. never spoke with us. His father had been seperated from mom for # yrs and divorced for 1 before the diagnosis. He has talked about suicide, which we weren't informed of by mom...but school psych eval. we got. Daniel has asked his mom to move back and find a boyfriend with less kids. She said that wasn't going to happen. He lives in a 4 bedroom trailer with his mom, her BF and 4 other children 3 boys and 1 girl.ages 9-16. She has him on concerta and clonidine. She was refusing to send the clonidine saying it was as needed. We took him to the hospital to get pills.They called Youth services.She was informed she had to send the meds. Now she changed Drs. Daniels doseage was .05, then .1 now .15 clonidine nightly. She had the new Dr. change it to PRN, (never heard of this. ) The physicians desk reference says as little as .1 can be toxic in children. Also it says that this med should be taken daily. Is giving it PRN safe? We are going for custody and she keeps "forgetting" to bring Daniel although it is ordered that he give testimony. This is a very stressful situation for Daniel and for us.He is an hour and 1/2 away and we try to stay as involved as possible but are thwarted at every turn by her telling schools and psych. services not to speak to us. Then we have to send them copies of the custody agreement and it takes another week till we get any information before she changes Drs. again or calls the school with a new way to keep us from getting info.Case in point: we see him Easter last..He looks thin we call her and ask if he's sick and that maybe he should be seen. She won't tell us his weight, we call scholl nurse. She says he went from 52lbs and 47 inches to 47lbs 47 in.. Called mom and told her and she went to school and said they can't tell us that.They said they can't keep it from us so she won't let him be weighed in school now. Then went to her Dr. and had the Nurse practi. write that he was 47 in. and 57 lbs a month later. The drs. office won't talk to us or release his records although we have a legal right to know. Any take on the whole situation would be helpful, especially on the clonidine. Help!!!

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Our expert says:
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Dear Tammy,
Sounds like you need good legal help more than psychological --- and it sounds likely that the boy's psychological state will quieten down if you can get cusody, and ive him the stablity she has denied him. To move him so ofen, and move in to a crowded trailer with 4 other kids would be an obvious explanation for adjustment Disorder, and blaming a divorce several years earlier is rather a silly diagnostic conceit. I know of no benefts from clonidine prn in such a situation, and would prefer it to be prescribed after proper assessment by a child psychiatrist rather than a GP. I wouldn't like to suggest dosages at such a distance.
Make sure you document all of her failures to share relevant information with you, and her interference with his father's elaionship with him and his other caregivers. It sounds ominously as if she is determined to use the boy as a weapon in her ongoing battles with his father.

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