Denice - posted on 06/07/2011 ( 12 moms have responded )
I am the mother of an adopted 16yr old boy with FAS/FAD. He has received medication throughout his life for one reason or the other. I have never really found that it does much good. The only medication I do find we need is the one to help him sleep at night. His whole life he would wander and get into things. Now at 16 those "things" involve leaving our home at 1am... He has had many different forms of medications and to be honest I think I WANTED it to work so I would see slight differences but looking back...what was working was my HOPE that something was helping which left me feeling more relaxed and more ready for another day. That is what was helping him...my fresh start. But I am not a doctor, I was just a worn out mom who single parented 3 boys and the middle one with FAD for over 14 years. Even though I fought for it we didn't get a diagnoses of FAS/FAD until he was 14yrs. I have been through more than you can imagine. I love my son dearly and have fought every step of the way to get him help and support. He has no understanding of cause and effect thinking. (IE He can not determine "If I do this, this will happen") Creating real challenges with discipline and teaching. He can not transfer information (IE He is told you can't hit Bobby. He thinks "OK" but will then hit Billy. Or he may be told you can't throw rocks. He says "OK" but will throw sticks, bricks, books etc. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Most times he is very charming, intuitive, polite, courteous, he really is a great guy!! At 6'2" he has no fear of getting on the floor and making faces and weird noises with my 18 month old daughter. He is really good with her (most of the time) our problem rests with his inability for impulse control and that cause and effect thinking. Living with my son is like living with two different people. He, as a person, is a great guy, but then the disability takes over and everything changes. The craziness of it is that just when you know you can't do it anymore, he changes and becomes this sweet loving guy and you stop, breathe and think "OK well maybe I can go one more month, week, day, minute..." depending on the severity of the event. I am now at the point of having a 16yr old who by all standards of our law system, has all the rights and we as the parent(s) have all the responsibility. I have done all I can and then some, but still haven't been able to keep my son safe from his disability. I am even trained int he field of Human Services and had numerous contacts. There are many delights with children with FAS/FAD. When my son shows enjoyment...its over the top. You can't help but join him in his joy!! When he laughs it truely is contagious :) But depending on the severity of FAS/FAD the care they will need throughout their lives varies greatly. Some, like my son, should never live independently. But the question becomes what do we do when you can't control them anymore and they won't let you help them? That is what we are facing today. How do you keep them safe while trying to keep others in your house safe, while trying to maintain some sanity and life for yourself?? I would be more than happy to chat with anyone who is looking for advice or just needs to vent. At the same time if anyone out there has been through what we are going through and has some advice for me I would greatly appreciate that as well. We are now at the stage that the law is involved and progressing much faster than I anticipated. I have done my research and know this is normal, but I still am hoping for something more than what all the professionals have offered me so far...."The best I can hope for is he gets arrested" Direct quote from several professionals.
If you would like more on our story feel free to contact me.