Reply To: Mom on the verge…I'm not alone, right?

Home Welcome to the ADDitude Forums For Parents Behavior & Discipline Mom on the verge…I'm not alone, right? Reply To: Mom on the verge…I'm not alone, right?


Your child sounds EXACTLY like my son, now 13. Very bright, did ok at first, but then started displaying pretty much all the same behaviors you describe. I, too, am most frustrated with the lying…and the STEALING! He will get caught in the act and still deny it, which is also crazy. He, too, seems immune to consequences and is not very motivated by rewards, or at least not for any length of time. I have also tried all the discipline techniques you have.

Let me ask this, any chance your son is adopted? Mine is. I was a single parent and adopted him at birth, domestically. At age 4 I adopted a second son, and at age 6 I began dating and later married when my son was 8. In hindsight, I first recall that he stole something at age 5. His other really significant ODD behavior was to pee in random places around the house but not because he wasn’t potty trained, because he was, at age 2.

Where I’m going with this is that many of these behaviors that both our sons display are not only sometimes seen in ADHD, but can be symptoms of RAD – REACTIVE ATTACHMENT DISORDER. In fact, RAD literature makes mention that many of those kids are misdiagnosed with ADD/ADHD. Although often thought of as an issue with those abandoned or adopted in later years, it can be seen even in kids adopted at infancy or in kids who’ve suffered other sorts of trauma. I read a lot about it, and I think my son may have it. Unfortunately, I don’t think there are many people-even professionals- well acquainted with RAD and/or trauma therapy. If you think that could be an issue, some resources I’ve found include,
-Beyond Consequences (book and website):
-Karyn Purvis’ info: The Connected Child, by Karyn Purvis, PhD. and David Cross, PhD, and
-The Whole Brain Child, by Daniel Siegel, MD

So sorry for anyone going through this. I feel your pain! No one gets it! I feel like the crazy one (even though my son’s psychiatrist has reminded me repeatedly, “You know, you’re not the one with the problem.” I just wish there were more clinicians out there who knew more/could offer more (than we’ve had so far).

Best to you,