son has ptsd, need help with med y or no

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
son has ptsd, need help with med y or no
Tue, 06-15-2004 - 2:42pm

I am in desperate need of advice, information and commentary to help me reach a decision on meds for my son. I will make try to make the symptoms and issues brief. Any help on this situation is MOST appreciated. I have posted on a few other boards to gain as much perspective as possible

I left a 7 yr abusive (physical and extremely emotional) marriage with my 2 kids. Son was 6 and daughter was turning 4 at the time. I didnt realize it at the time that he was abnormal on an emotional level, my son. Because my ex never let us be around other families including my own, I had no reference to see how full of anxiety and how emotionallt inbalanced my son truly was. My daughter was not the target most of the time and was not as effected by the abuse as my son.

So after leaving the marriage, we went to therapy and I have been looking seriously at what has happened to me, my daughter and my son. He has been diagnosed PTSD and ADD. The Dr said he has hypervigiliance which effects his emotional status all day. His outbursts can be brought on by the change of the wind. He doesnt really get violent however he does throw temper tantrums and threatens my daughter when she isnt doing what he wants her to do. I'll do a quick list

1) Crys when doesnt understand something very small or if he cant fold something or whatever.

2) Thinks no one likes him and is making fun of him or takes jokes too seriously

3) His perception is off, thinks everyone hates him and then starts fights with people

4) gets frusterated if you dont answer his questions in complete detail, will throw a crying fit.

5) Can not be left alone in a room by himself even during the day unless he is at school or at a function. He will get scared of his monsters

6) has auditory and visual hallucinations right before bed and can not be consoled unless you are sleeping right next to him. Acts as if he is going to have an anxiety attack if you try to leave him.

7) extremely emotional but very loving and sensitive at the same time

8) Failing 2nd grade, cant not stay focused at school, everyone says the same thing...he is a smart child but cant pay attention. Cant remember a conversation sometimes even if you are looking straight into his face. Can not recall moments after. This is not all the time, mostly happens when its something serious or important...he just blocks it out. Many times he just is in his own little world.

9) does not have solid friendships with kids his age, seems to play with younger kids 2 yrs or more younger.

So these are a few of his issues. The Dr and Therapist are stressing the need to give him the medication Risperdal. I am very scared to do that and worry about side effects and potential harm to my sons well being. Friends say that well, he is suffering right now and that its worth the risk but its hard. I know my tolerance is high for dealing with his issues but what is it doing to him? How will his issues effect his young life since it is obvious that he is not able to function as well as children his age. I need to make a decision soon and have been sitting on this for about 2 mths now. I have been looking at alterative medicine..does anyone have advice on this approach. I am already giving him extra B vitamins, omega 3, and calcium in the evening.

We have been away from his dad for 2 yrs now and I would think that his anxiety would go down but its not. yes he is calmer to some degree but the main issues have not changed and the nighttime fears have actually gotten worse and the Dr says it wont until the chemical inbalance in his brain is adjusted with meds. I know this is true but i just wonder if there isnt another way, another medication another alternative med? Please anyone, let me know your exprience your advice and I will be so greatful.



iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 06-15-2004 - 6:02pm

Aarja, welcome and glad you've found us.



iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 06-17-2004 - 4:25am

Sometimes kids need to be stabilized by meds so the therapies , teaching skills such as problem solving , anger control can take place. For me behavior modification does not really address the kids issues . However giving a lot of positive recognition , try to make the kid successful by finding things to praise helps his self esteem and attitude

I always think back to the story of Helen Keller. Her behavior was very out of control and aggressive when she was young. Once she was taught the skills to be able to communicate the negative behavior disappeared. No amount of punishment could have brought that about. It was skills that she needed so desperately and that made all the difference. If your child is monitored closely you should have no fear. Also get a second opinion. It is not easy to find the right med , dosage or correct combination

Also look after yourself -remember a good parent is one who is good to herself

Yours Mary

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Mon, 06-28-2004 - 2:36pm
Mary, thank you for sharing some excellent information.