Reply To: Does she really think I hate her?

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I am a mom to a son who was diagnosed with ADHD, ODD, depression, anxiety…and highly intelligent. ODD outbursts are far greater than this. The defiance comes in, when to no avail, will your child respond to direction from you or any other authority. They will constantly defy your rules, judgements and argue with you for the sake of arguing. They do not wish to be wrong. I also have ADHD. And I do believe my 14 y/o daughter may possibly have ADHD, as well, but I can assure you that much of her behavior sounds very much like common teenage or pre-teen behavior, brought on by hormones, possible slight depressive thoughts, low self-esteem while trying to navigate their hormones with a twist of society or outside influence. I would be less concerned about ODD and more concerned with her feelings of not feeling adequate, possibly mildly depressed, etc., because everything you shared, sounds just like that. Especially if the frustration lies in not being able to pin-point her expression. With ODD, they are more apt to use terms associated outwardly, and have no trouble saying they hate you or wish ill upon you or even to more the extreme. Kids with ODD many times don’t turn anything onto themselves and will refuse to take blame, turn attention to themselves as being the problem, and their lack of respect will often cause very explosive arguments, to which someone else will always be the cause. But I think you’ve got a pretty normal pre-teen, with unbalanced hormones and the possible onset of depression. I would try to focus more on her diet, mindfulness, talking with her openly about her day and regulate her time on social media. And I will warn you as I’ve quickly learned at this age, that cutting is a very common self-harm technique nowadays, so I would just be aware of that and pay attention if the depression seems to worsen. But her outbursts sound like she has occurences of sadness and she may require more hugs in the process. Vitamin D may help ease some of these symptoms, being outdoors and away from electronic devices, for sure. If you don’t notice any changes in her overall demeanor within a couple weeks, or it starts to seem worse, make sure you bring her in for a blood test and evaluation from her doctor. Sometimes even the chemical imbalance of hormones can wreak havoc in a household. Especially if she’s not sure where to express them or associate them to. If she’s hurting she’ll project them toward to the one she loves the most first. I would establish an open line of communication with her, so long as she can discuss her feelings between the two of you, in a way she isn’t deflecting any of her feelings outward, and let her know that you can’t help her unless you have an understanding of what she is feeling. One thing I have learned also, is teenagers have a way of absorbing other kids actions and emotions on social media, youtube, and other social networking and video sharing sites, so make sure the behavior is hers, and not just a result of what gets rubbed off onto her, be aware that much of this bs on the internet is kids making videos for reactions. Sometimes they have the illusion it will work similarly for them, when they present it to the right crowd. If the behavior is that of defiance, they won’t change their behavior because they see it is upsetting to you. In fact, it will probably become worse and more aggressive. Depressive behavior can be periodically outwardly, but also very isolated/introverted behavior. And mood swings, as intolerable as they can get, are a good sign that her hormones are in control. ODD is a a horrible disorder to experience and I know it neary desroyed our family. But I hope you put your mind at ease by hearing other experiences. As much as hormones can fluctuate, the ODD brain seems to function on one wire only, and it isn’t anything that you want to live through or wish on your worst enemy.