I need encouragement : So my 8 year old... - CHADD's ADHD Pare...

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I need encouragement


So my 8 year old son (ADHD/ODD/Anxiety) is so so emotional, moody, and often angry. He whines about everything it seems and aims most of his frustration at his sister. Stimulants seem to exacerbate the irritability. Started 1mg Intuniv today. Hoping to see some relief over the next 5 days. Does anyone have a story for me that’s positive. Like... his emotions/temperament may regulate as he gets older. Or like 70% of kids out grow their ODD. Every moment feels like a stressful/emotional standoff between him and his sister (7 year old). It’s nails on a chalkboard all day and there’s no end in sight. He instigates majority of the time with his agitation and demands but she can be annoying too. Worried about her self confidence. Anyways. Tell me there’s a chance this levels off as he grows up. Thanks!! I’m wiped out.

17 Replies

We saw positive side effects from guanfacine in the very first week. I hope that’s encouraging!

The good news is that with time children with ADHD often have a reduction of symptoms as they gain maturity. They also can be taught how to deal with emotions that they are experiencing. I your son in therapy? This is one of the tools which really helps our son. He can talk with someone ( not me) about how he is processing things and find better ways to deal with them.

We have had great luck on Intuniv, he has been taking it for about 3 years now. Don't be afraid if they want to increase the medication to get to the best dose. Our son takes his at bedtime and it is a 24 hour dose.

Good luck, we are here any time for you.

Hi - how do you get your child to take Intuniv? It seems to only be available in uncrushable tablets and my son won’t take anything he has to swallow (sensory and control issues). Thanks!

MomofBells in reply to Lindsaykc

We started with putting the pill in a spoonful of yogurt and it went right down. It only took a month for him to get to swallowing it with water.

Krispies99 in reply to Lindsaykc

You can also get it in crushable form, called Tenex. It’s short acting so it has to be taken more than once per day. My son is 5 and can’t swallow pills yet either.

DC516 in reply to Lindsaykc

We played a game at dinner once ... swallow the bean. We had black beans and peas to use (I know a pea isn’t a bean 😊). Anyways we made it fun and got excited when he did it. Like he won! Then when pill time came it was like ... oh wait, you know how to do this! 🧐. Honestly I think the hard part was actually getting beans on his dinner plate 😂

DC516 in reply to Onthemove1971

Hi. Yup he’s been in therapy for 3 years now. It’s “play therapy” so it’s not too invasive and his counselor is good about making it fun. I could easily see him refusing to go/talk so this is a helpful approach. The issue with therapy is that they usually don’t get very deep. It’s surface level stuff and I don’t know that he really listens. He’s kinda smart on it too and gives silly answers to avoid talking about stuff.

You will get great advice and information from others on here. Here are some Pax Tools for parents to use. Go through all of them and see what works for you. You will survive and it does get better... and worse... then better. Meds can smooth out the roller coaster.

Pax Tools intro


Pax Breaks


Working from home


Our neighbor have two boys with similar conditions and they took meds that sounded like yours, but I am not sure. The boys needed to go outside a lot to vent and have fun activities. Then they started attending a local church where the volunteers just loved them and they changed for the better, and they found friends whose presence calmed them down. Being with other kids of similar age can sometimes have an amazing outcome. In time some new neighbors moved in our community with similar aged kids and they played outside regularly. The boys are in high school now and doing quite well. Maybe you can try checking out some nearby churches who might be able to help you.

It does get better!! My daughter is 10 and has been On intuniv (3 mg), and Adzenys for a few years. Maturity helps a lot, also CBT as well for the last year. We have to work with her younger brother so he understands her behavior and how he has to walk away or ignore her provocative behavior. But she has to take accountability for the way she behaves and the things she says. They still argue like normal siblings but it is better than it used to be.

She has ADHD combined and ODD along with anxiety. Keep your chin up. And keep trying medications, one may be a winner for him.

DC516 in reply to MomofBells

Yup! Constantly fighting and whining with sister. I always say “speak nicely to your sister” and he shouts back “I AM!” ... but he’s not. It’s like he has NO clue how to be nice. Like it’s not even a function he possesses. So strange and frustrating

MomofBells in reply to DC516

Oddly their brains need the extra stimulation so arguing and fighting fills that need. We have also found that her need to control him and what he does is a result of her anxiety. And her attempt to control him sets him off. It’s a vicious cycle.

Please watch all the Pax Tool videos. You will find some helpful ideas for handling those two. Laying out a vision that the two of them create with you, and then being specific about what is "nice" and what is not, will give them some self-control and recognition of appropriate behaviors. Watch all the videos. The ones posted above should lead you to the others.

My daughter is 10 now. She was terrible when she was eight. That is when I took her to a psychiatrist, started her on meds, and started her in therapy. Her psychiatrist told me that most behaviors in children with adhd get better in time when they mature and when peer relationships become more important to them. I am already seeing that he was right. She has come so far in two years with her emotional regulation, acceptance of responsibility, and social skills. Hang in there!

Very similar story with my 9yo son. We did methylphenidate, clonidine, and sertraline along with some therapy and a BIP at school. He was actually doing great and then COVID happened. Now we are regressing and having meltdowns and aggression again.

Ask your doctor about Sertraline or other antidepressants to see if it is right for your son.

Good luck!

My son was the same way. He was difficult to be around and blamed everyone else for his mistakes. When he hit puberty, he got physically abusive. With the combination of all the right meds, therapy and maturity, things did get better. Not perfect, but he's now 19 has a full time job and a place of his own.

My daughter is 6 years old. She has migraines like me. Because of my history all they made me do was keep a headache diary for 30 days at 4 years old. I really tried not to effect the results I made sure I asked no leading questions. I recorded 15 headache and 2 of those went to what I call "term" and she threw up. So the medicine to prevent has helped a lot. She only really causes any "serious" behavior problems(I realize my serious probably doesn't compare to yours). We give her a homeopathi.c remedy called "Calm Keeper"(I get it at Sprouts) daily and it really seems to help the eb and flow of her moods. Doesn't make her a space cadet, but it allows her sit down and color, or sit down and play with her Barbies. I suspect she has ADHD like me so there are times she is talking a lot, and is just not calm, where you as a parent aren't trying to be mean. You just need a little peace and quite for your own mental sanity . I have said a prayer for you that you can find peace in your home, and as God brings your situation back to my memory I will pray again.

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