Will he stop lieing and stealing if he takes meds?

Carol - posted on 08/04/2016 ( 17 moms have responded )

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My son is 18 yrs old, was diagnosed with adhd. He tried meds but refused to take them because he was losing weight and not able to eat. His junior year his grades began to drop , not horrible but concerning. His senior year was an absolute disaster. He was either tardy or absent 190 days that year, flunking all but one class.

For two years he constantly stole money from my purse, he stole money from his grandmas purse . It's so bad I now sleep with my purse, he has taken my credit card and charge items,and forged checks in my name
He got caught getting into cars at school stealing money and personal effects. The police came arrested him, finger prints and all,he was suspended from school. He was smoking pot excessively, a couple of times a day. His pot use was excessive and worrisome. We made him get a job,since he wasn't focusing on his studies and all he did was get high in his spare time. We talked to him several times about not stealing, don't steal we explained they have cameras and you will surely get caught,so don't even think about, Three weeks into his job he got fired for stealing money from the cash register on three separate occasions and again the police came. When I confronted him he had no remorse and didn't think he would get caught. Why would a kid do this, he's on probation for the last burglary?He now has two charges against him as an adult, one for burglary and the other for theft and his not caring attitude was chilling and disturbing to say the least .
. We made him go to therapy. The psychologist felt he had a substance abuse problem and wanted to focus on getting him clean as opposed to addressing his adhd and severe anxiety. She felt he was stealing to get money to buy drugs. A year and a half of therapy, The drug use continued , the behavior unacceptable. We have since moved out of state and my son has lives with me. He no longer has his drug connections, great I'm thinking, no more stealing for drug money. The first week we were here we went shopping. We came home and he went to his room, I went to talk to him and found him emptying his pockets with at least 6 different items.
He had shoplifted! My son is on probation for two other theft and burglary charges and was told by the judge if he steals again he is headed for jail and he feels compelled to steal again? , what would possess him to take such a chance? He again had no remorse. He looked at me like what's the big deal!!! He's noting stealing just to buy pot, he's a bonafied thief.
Grant is also a pathological liar. You can catch him red handed and he will look you in the face and boldly lie. He can not take no for an answer if you ask him to do something or restrict him take something away for punishment, it's crazy. He becomes very angry, yells , swears, pick furniture up and throws it. He will make a scene out in public and could care less if people stop and stare. I never raise my,voice, but,our arguments last for hours. He tries to wear you down to get you to change your mind, he repeats himself over and over again, if I leave the room and tell him I'm not arguing anymore he will follow me to continue he swears at me, uses the f word, tells me I don't care about him,threatens to kill himself.... It's maddening. His dad and I were sure that he has major character flaws and deep sited issues. He grew up in an affluent family, did we spoil him, did we not teach him the difference between right and wrong? What did we do to this kid for him to act this way?
I took him to see a a psychologist here in Florida and she did a 2 hour interview and called me in to discuss. She said, he has no impulse control and doesn't understand the consequences of his actions, he smokes pot because he is self medicating because of his anxiety issue. Consistent with adhd. Many teens will turn to drugs when suffering with adhd. Why is he not on meds she asked? I told her that the dr. In Iowa wanted to focus on getting his substance abuse under control first before we started meds. She disagreed, I highly recommend you get him on meds to help with his impulsiveness. Treat the anxiety and he won't have the need to self medicate. Of course I thought to my self, how could I have been so blind. I was thinking adhd was a focusing issue, and the impulsiveness and not understanding consequences were more social issues...You know, speaking before thinking, verbal faux paus never imagined that it could to criminal activity.
For the first time in two years I have hope. We have an appointment with a dr in 6 weeks and if given meds he will stop the stealing!!! Great, I,think to my self.
I just happen to find his website today and I'm horrified reading the posts where many of you face the the same problems, lieing, cheating and stealing... While On meds and it continues. Does it not help with the impulsiveness? Are we doomed to have a a young man destined to go to jail because he can't control himself and doesn't understand the consequences of his actions ? Scared mom in Florida. Broken hearted.

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Sarah - posted on 08/05/2016

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Above all the drug use is probably the most influential factor in his behavior. Maybe he needs more than outpatient treatment?

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 08/04/2016

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Sorry Carol, but you CANNOT continue to blame ADHD for your son's problems, and at his adult age, you cannot continue to force him to go to therapy. Nor can you, or anyone force meds on him if he doesn't want to take them, unless he is legally deemed incompetent and court ordered into treatment.

What did you do when you discovered the stolen property this most recent time? Did you, as a responsible adult, turn him in for shoplifting? Is he having to face any consequences this time?

My kid is an Aspie's kid. My nephews were diagnosed ADHD. Both nephews had concentration issues. Both also had legal troubles. What helped both of my nephews? DOING TIME FOR THEIR CRIMES. Both, when they got done, moved forward and became productive adults.

Probably not what you want to hear, but it is what it is.

Ev - posted on 08/04/2016

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Actually, meds do not make anyone not do anything like stealing, lying, and so on. Those are moral values we instill in our children as parents. ADHD is not an excuse to explain away a child's behavior. Kids with ADHD can still be held accountable for their actions in breaking the rules and other things. Not all kids who lie, steal and cheat are ADHD either. No medication is going to keep him from cheating, stealing and doing other things. He needs to learn to control his behavior just like anyone else does and it can be taught. Apparently, taking things from him did not work to get him to learn his lessons.

And the fact he is 18 years old means that legally you have no say in how he handles his life now. He is an adult and you meddling in his medical affairs is against the law.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 08/05/2016

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I am sorry for everything your family is going through. I am sure ADHD is a contributing factor in a lot of his behaviors, but there is no magic pill to stop someone from stealing. Hopefully he is continuing with therapy. It sounds like there are a lot of underlying issues that need to be addressed in conjunction with the ADHD. I wish you the best, but it is going to take work on everyones part, especially your son.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 08/05/2016

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no one told you to give up, for god's sake, we told you to let him suffer the consequences.

LET HIM GO TO JAIL. He's not going to change, unless something drastic happens...thus, JAIL.

You didn't answer, either. DID YOU TURN HIM IN? Probably not.

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♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 08/21/2016

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FFS!

Danielle, I did not say anything different than you did, so stop telling me off.

You don't like blunt, straight to the point answers, that's not my problem. I am sick and tired of people telling me I am a "bully" when all I do is NOT sugar coat shit.

Carol - posted on 08/21/2016

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Thank you Danielle, I needed to hear from someone that was having similar problems. I think I'll leave this site as there are too many angry , hurtful people, not helpful . Best of luck to you and I appreciate your comments and will take them to heart.

Dove - posted on 08/07/2016

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*As for the stealing never ever let him think your making excuses for his behaviour even though we do. My son stole everything from me I called the police on him myself and pressed charges.

You don't like my approach and wording... fine... I don't like being told where I can and can not post and how I can and can not talk/write.

I basically mentioned that she should do this and I got put down because I don't have a child w/ ADHD... Granted, I probably shouldn't have posted my second response... but like I said... I don't like being told where I can and can not post, so... ;)

Shawnn and I are often blunt which is interpreted as rude.... Giving advice in a way others don't like is NOT internet trolling. I do oftentimes give good and kind advice. Typically speaking though... as a single, disabled mother w/ one major debilitating physical disorder and 4 mental/emotional health disorders... I really don't even have the patience to deal w/ my own life. Being here is a release to try and keep a shred of sanity in my own home. Anyone that can't deal w/ it... ignore me cuz I ain't going anywhere. My own family NEEDS me to be here and they outrank anyone else in my life.

Danielle - posted on 08/07/2016

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Shawnn & Dove it's extremely noticeable that you upset a lot of users on here. This is suppose to be a site for Mums uniting & sticking together not Internet trolling. I am a new user and needing support myself and you both seem to just ridicule and point out everyone's wrong doings. I nearly didn't come back on here cause I find you both intimidating. I really do think you should think before you speak and the hurtful negative effects have on us mums that are already going threw a hard time .

Carol my dear please do not think you are alone in this, what you have just described you could of been talking about my son. My son also has ADHD but wasn't diagnosed until he was in high school. my child displays no emotions, empathy or remorse. His behaviour is completly out of control and it's so difficult it's to tap into his thought process to the point you end up banging your head of off the wall. Their minds work differently and they don't seem to respond to the norm. I do know they need parenting differently as I have a daughter who is 18months older than my boy and responds fine to praise and rewards punishment etc etc. Carol I know what you are going threw and feeling, Please do not feel you are a bad parent because you are not. Your boy maybe displaying behaviour difficulties which could be brought on by frustration of his ADHD. My child was called naughty all threw his primary years at school that he now lives up to that name. He actually was just struggling academically and no one noticed the signs and just said he was doing it on purpose. Carol keep consistent, keep calm, they love and need routine same routine everyday with every area of their lives. They need lots of praise if you can find someway of doing it outside the constant bad behaviour. Their self esteem and self belief is none existent so they need that from us. Try and find a advocate specialist in ADHD and get some tips and how to deal with him I did and it helped somewhat. As for the stealing never ever let him think your making excuses for his behaviour even though we do. My son stole everything from me I called the police on him myself and pressed charges. He hated me then but understands now why I did it. Good luck and all the best, stay strong you can do this. Danielle

Carol - posted on 08/05/2016

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Thank you for you post. I'm involved in his medical affairs because he has asked me to and has signed the approbriate paper work. Yes he is 18 an adult but I will continue to help him get the help he needs. I'm not giving up. There maybe a time in the future where I am not involved and let it run its course . But to give up now is not an option .

Carol - posted on 08/05/2016

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We were good parents. We did teach him the difference between right and wrong. There were consequences for his actions. We didn't have problems until his senior year. I was looking at other posts by people that have children , teens with ADHD and was astounded with the number of parents that say they have the same problem. Maybe I am grasping at straws hoping that the meds will help with his impulse control . I know he is 18, but I am not going to give up on him. I will continue to take him to therapy and talk with the dr's about things we have ecperienced with hopes he gets the help he needs. He has agreed to allow me to do this and has signed documents to allow them to speak with him. This may not be an ADHD problem , perhaps he's lost his way, but it's not because we were not parenting. We were very involved with his life.

Jodi - posted on 08/04/2016

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As others have pointed out, things like stealing and lying are NOT due to his ADHD. They are due to a basic lack of moral values in this area. I do not have a child with ADHD, but I work very closely with teens with ADHD (some cases worse than others), and ADHD children still need to be held accountable for their choices each and every time. And yes, these are basic values. ADHD children DO understand the consequences of their actions if you work through a restorative question process. It just takes consistency. Even the worst cases of ADHD I have seen (and we've got a couple at the school at the moment), when you provide the right environment and work through the right process, they absolutely understand the consequences of their actions.

Dove - posted on 08/04/2016

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While I do not have a child w/ ADHD... I did not mention that I do have a friend who's daughter w/ it is a senior this year... she gets straight A's, has never broken the law, has a job, etc... because she has a mom that was very strict (while also kind) and got her the help she needed as a young child to be successful in life.

And if I did have a child w/ issues and I failed to parent them when they were younger... at 18 they would have to take responsibility for themselves and their illegal actions and I would just have to hope the guilt of my failure would be something I would get over in therapy...

Carol - posted on 08/04/2016

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dear Dove, appreciate your comments. We have held him accountable for his actions. We have taken his car, his phone, his computer, grounded him, therapy, extensive out patient drug rehab. We have done everything. This post was meant for mothers with children with adhd. They post similar problems. No offense but you don't have a child with adhd so I don't think you are in a position to make comments.

Dove - posted on 08/04/2016

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If this were my child I would have pressed charges myself for the theft. He quite likely still steals because he was never held firmly accountable for his actions from the beginning.

Of course, I don't deal w/ a child w/ ADHD, but this 'kid' is 18... the time to parent has passed. He is old enough to take responsibility for his own choices and get himself the help he needs... or suffer the very real, legal consequences of his behavior.

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