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Old 12-06-2010, 09:48 PM
Location: Bora Bora: Vava'u.
738 posts, read 1,690,657 times
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read through the complex characteristics of a rad child. Many diagnosed incorrectly.....

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Old 12-12-2010, 02:46 PM
Location: California
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Default Differential Diagnosis

Here is some food for thought...

Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is due to the lack of attachment from birth until whenever. Babies need touch, love, stimuli etc to form human connections. If they don't have that (think Romanian orphanages), then they will have great difficulty in ever forming human connections.

Reactive Attachment Disorder (http://www.psychnet-uk.com/dsm_iv/attachment_disorder.htm - broken link)

However, if the kids had loving parents and have the same types of behaviors, you're looking more at Conduct Disorder (CD). CD is due to a whole host of things, abuse, genetic loadings, etc. Conduct Disordered kids hurt animals, younger siblings, break lots of rules, very defiant, etc.

Conduct Disorder (http://www.psychnet-uk.com/dsm_iv/conduct_disorder.htm - broken link)

As for treatment, there is a lack of research on how best to treat RAD children. No doubt, some of them will need inpatient care.

As for CD, the most severe cases will grow up to have Antisocial Personality Disorder or, in rare cases, become psychopaths. (http://www.suite101.com/content/without-conscience-a205137 - broken link)

The good news is that most (75%) of children diagnosed with CD will NOT go on to develop a personality disorder. And, because it's much more common, there are good treatments out there, including medication, and cognitive-behavioral programs. The rule of thumb with CD, is that treatment has to "come from all sides" and the earlier the intervention, the better.

Want to send some love and support to all of you moms out there who are trying so hard....

Originally Posted by everydaycounts View Post
Hello-I just got back from visiting a friend of mine and I am so disturbed-I can hardly sleep. My friend had a daughter almost years ago. She never had any schedule (no bedtimes set, no parameters-a co-sleeper who was able to nurse until she fell asleep completely in control so my friend never got any sleep). She never really talked-just would say "That!" and scream until they quickly give her what she wants to shut her up. The Father is not really interested in being a father-he stuck them in suburbia and gets in late from his job late at night and wants the house to be perfect and the children orderly. Which the little girl does respect him and does what Daddy wants. Anyway, this little girl is hard to describe. Whenever I visited my friend our conversations were either over her screaming for things or running after her when she would laugh and run. My friend taps her butt and says no and time out-but nothing was ever done to rein in the normal way kids I guess test the boundaries of parents. As a result-there is no discipline anymore except half-hearted time outs because the little 4 year old knows this-has Grammy to run to, says shut up and does not listen anyway (no bedtimes can be enforced and you can't "make" her do anything-everyone is just subject to dealing with whatever she is doing when you are around my friend) My friend's Mom also lives with them and she is the "go to" one for this little girl. The little girl is always making grammy defend her and giving her sweets and always saying "poor so and so-I'm so sorry" when sometimes there was nothing wrong. This little girl hits and spits. Slaps and if she sees you like something will try to destroy it. She is always screaming and breaking things so whenever you call my friend-she is always screaming at her to stop! Don't break that! etc. So if this is not a big enough problem, it gets worse -my friend now has a 8 month old baby girl who now knows how to walk. This little girl(the 4 year-old) still does poopie diapers and is still out of control. She is always "fencing in the baby" or holding her down, or sitting on top of her with her hands over the baby's mouth and nose. I was horrified and had to say things to my friends (Her and her MOM) "Hey! *** just kicked over little **** over and over and you guys aren't doing anything but tell her to stop!" The baby runs away from her older sister and the older sister is always "bullying"her. She is always trying to run off with her or pull her away alone. This 4-year old is such a lying manipulator. YOu may think badly of me for saying that, but she steals and comes up with elaborate stories that sound plausible. Her lying about everything is like it really did happen and she does not bat an eye and looks at you so sincerely. It does not help this little girl looks EXACTLY like the little girl "Cindy" in The Grinch-totally gorgeous. When I was in the car with her and her grammy-we almost went to the restaurant she wanted because she started screaming she wanted a certain dish. Grammy almost capitulated until I looked at her and said-"No we are the adults and we will decide". Little *** started screaming and kicking towards me and screaming "no" !iover and over. She bites and hits and is like a wild animal. Seriously. I have seen her twice for extended periods while visiting over the past 4 years and am shocked. My friend is overwhelmed with the demands of feeding the new baby and her state of 24-hour protection from the 4 year old. She never leaves her alone-because when she does-the 4 year old is trying to quietly pick her up and take her to another room and hurt her. This is so insane and I tell you-I could not make this stuff up. My friend lives in a fabulous home and seemingly has everything most folks could want-but she is exhausted from the feeding and defense of her baby and the constant dealing with (seriously-when you are around them you have to deal with this kid either demanding or trying to physically do things to the baby-it is hard to be around her). I have told my friend that all I can see is misery for her as these kids grow up-one out of control and violent-always trying to hurt her sister and the little baby sister who will grow up and hate her Mom for the literal torture she suffered at the hands of her horrifically jealous and rage-driven sister,. This baby is scared of her sister and looks over at her mother almost like (help) sometimes and cries like she knows what is going to happen next as the 4 year old hurts her and says "sorry Mommy!" so "innocently". This child scares me. I have told my friend the following: Please: 1-set a schedule for food and please feed them something besides cheerios pasta and McDonald's-feed them only natural foods not crap (the 4year old does like fruit and gets it everyday-she also does things like say she wants eggs and the eggs are fixed and then she does not want them-so grammy her ally and defender of bad behavior-fixes her new dishes-it is like a game to this little child). As far as scheduling-you have to set a bedtime and somehow figure out how to enforce it-the 4-year old does not have a st bedtime so she is up and down as she pleases demanding and getting food at 10:00 at night or whatever-YOU CAN NOT GET HER TO DO ANYTHING OR LISTEN TO ANYTHING SHE CAN NOT BE DISCIPLINED_SHE DOES NOT RESPECT ANYONE EXCEPT ABSENTEE AND GOLDEN DADDY 2-Get the 4 year old and you, the Mommy, in therapy 3-tell the daddy you need help as this is too big for you and he needs to be made aware of the problem and needs to help-not react as he always does(he wants order and control around him-please I can't get started in on him) 4-Tell Grammy no more cosleeping with the 4 year old , giving her what she wants all of the time-over and over, countermanding the Mommy so the little 4 year old runs to Grammy who staunchly always defends and justifies this awful 4-year old's lies and violence towards the baby , 5-get organic food delivery service so the food issue is settled and controlled (yeah I suggested this but the 4 year old demands and gets what she wants all of the time that I do doubt she would eat it), 6-stop developing another kid with horrific habits-let me explain-my friend nurses the baby and does not sleep because she gets upset when the baby cries if she goes in the crib-so my friend looks like she is on the way to getting ms or something as she eats like crap and never gets any rest-she did the same nursing thing with the 4 -year old. The kids have total control to the point where she does her half-sleep thing in another room and does not sleep with her husband anymore, 7)Put the 4-year-old in nursery school or kindergarten and then daycare after that to have some peace and quiet-5 days a week-get her away from that baby. I know it is rough sounding-but that 4 -year old senses things and does truly evil things-crazy things that unless you saw her do them when she did not know you were looking-you would not believe it. I am only the friend and this situation exhausts me. I fear since my friend does not possess any tools for motherhood-something truly tragic is on its way to happening. I feel for my friend and those kids-I feel as though this sophisticated almost sociopathic behavior of the 4-year old is now her operating m.o. for life and my friend may not live to tell about any of this. This child watches like a cat and learns-she is frightening. If anyone has any advice on another forum I can post this if this is the wrong one-please let me know. Or maybe you know of a site. I have a life and am very busy but this situation had rocked my world. These folks live lives of insanity of this little girl and the situation it creates 24/7 now like it is normal.
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Old 03-14-2011, 11:32 AM
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What do you do when you find out your adopted foster child may have RAD after the adoption is complete?
We adopted our daughter almost 4 years ago and she was labeled with PTSD. Things have gotten worse and I see her symptoms and behaviors are those of RAD.
Her behavior has been very trying on our family. I feel that catering to her behavior is taking away from attention my other children need. It's also very trying when you are the "target".
Sorry to vent.........thanks in advance for any advice you may have.
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Old 03-15-2011, 04:25 PM
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Talk with the school psychologist about your daughter, get an IEP/IFSP for your child started now, to have documentation, and services. This will help if things get worse, as she can be put into a special residential school with enough documentation, at the school district expense. Look at the Website, wrightslaw.com for information about SPED laws and RAD kids.
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:16 PM
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Glad to see there's other parents out there with RAD kids.

Basically, there is no help or hope. You can research all you want, you will be given all sorts of phone numbers to call, all sorts of suggestions, etc, but there is no treatment, just a lot of talk.

All the RAD treatments are unproven, and costly. Insurance doesn't cover much of it, and if you've adopted from another country, you can't qualify for medicaid. As we know, we had to sign a waiver to place the child on medicaid to get him a visa into this country. You will argue that point over and over with social workers, etc, who don't know WTF they're talking about and keep insisting you should apply for medicaid, which will make everything ok. Just the act of applying for medicaid could get us in trouble.

If you don't have a RAD kid, you know everything about what I did wrong, what I'm supposed to do, and are full of worthless advice. then, I'm a "bad parent" because I don't utilize your marvelous advice ans suddenly make my child perfect, like yours, because, after all, you raised a perfect child, you must know how its done.

Because parents of nonRAD children don't have a clue whart they're talking about, but I'm supposed to follow their advice, anyways.

You're damned if you do or don't. If you try to deal with the RAd issues, you're just trying to vindicate your own "bad parenting" by putting it off on the kid. If you don't deal with the RAD, you're neglecting the child.

Meanwhile, you try to live with a child who lies, steals, sets fires, makes up incredible tales of abuse, calls police and CPS constantly on you, and you have no recourse.

All you can do is:

live day-by-day

lock up your money, credit cards, check book as tight as a drum, never let your guard down for a second

If you have anything of value you wish to keep, like jewelry, put it in a safe deposit box OUTSIDE the home for some day in the future, otherwise, these kids know all the hiding places and will find it---my ds traded my diamond watch for some games, doesn't have a clue where it is now

make sure never to be alone with the RAD kid, always carry a cell phone, have an alram system in the house,

Be prepared to be attacked, have a "safe room" with a strong lock and seperate telephone line

Know the police won't do squat, except report YOU to CPS

take out a second job for money to pay YOUR legal defense bills, you will need it

Count the days until the kid turns 18

Realize you will be expected to find an answer, when there isn't one

Be prepared to have the system in your face constantly

All they do is double back on themselves---well, did you take him to a docotr, psychologist, psychiatrist? what did they say? Beyond a certain point, going to professionals is a lost cause. The original ones either give up, or, like us, we move, or they move, you start all over again, then get that stock question "what did doctor so-and so say?" they never "say" anything that you can use. They just look at you and say things like "what do you think?" What do you feel?"

We just went to one last week who looked at us and asked "what do you want me to do?" well, what can be done? That's something you have to figure out, pay $60 on the way out. Oh, ok, thanks a lot for nothing.

Be prepared to give up your dignity, your sanity, to constantly feel judged, to constantly feel you're at fault somehow, even though you're nursing injuries inflcited by the RAD kid, its YOUR FAULT!

Of course, its not your fault, but that's what the "system" will say, because they can't come up with anything else.

Good luck, anyone with a RAD kid!
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:20 PM
9,647 posts, read 15,748,183 times
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Of course, its all my fault---I never held my ds the first year of life, I never played with him, never fed him, never changed him, never even made eye contact with him. I never even touched him once----!

As a parent of a RAD kid, get used to hearing about that "important first year of life" over and over. Yep, he was severely neglected that important first year of life, and guess its all my fault, or at least, I'm the one to blame!
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Old 04-07-2011, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post
Of course, its all my fault---I never held my ds the first year of life, I never played with him, never fed him, never changed him, never even made eye contact with him. I never even touched him once----!

As a parent of a RAD kid, get used to hearing about that "important first year of life" over and over. Yep, he was severely neglected that important first year of life, and guess its all my fault, or at least, I'm the one to blame!
MaryleeII, I am an adoptive parent of a RAD child and I can certainly relate to your frustration and pain. I know that our circumstances are probably very different, but nonetheless, it is still very challengeing being a parent of a RAD child. The key is not to give up. Fight! I too have made many mistakes in the past just as all parents have.

What I have found helpful is to definitely meditate on a daily basis. Nothing fancy, just 10-15 minutes a day of finding a quiet space (a closet, the bathroom, wherever) to just completely clear my thoughts during that timeframe. What I have also found helpful is changing the way that I talk about my child. As Pastor Joel Osteen would say, "Speak favor over your child." Instead of thinking negative thoughts or visualizing negative outcomes, I trust in that higher power and BELIEVE that things will get better. I'm not trying to preach or judge, but I know how difficult it can be. You just have to look at your child and find the goodness in him/her and focus solely on that. Children are extremely intuitive and can pick up on the negative vibes and they feed off of that. I know this to be true first hand. Many times, when I change my attitude, my child instinctively changes his.

Remember, you cannot change the past, but you can change what you do right now. Everyday is a challenge, but take it one day at a time.

I really wish you the best!
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Old 04-14-2011, 07:49 AM
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Thank you for your advice. I have forwarded info to school counselor and I have her in counseling on a regular basis. I am now looking for a counselor who specializes in this.
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Old 04-15-2011, 06:52 AM
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Mommymoe, here are some links that might help:

Attachment Disorder Site - providing hope and support.

Reactive attachment disorder - MayoClinic.com

Reactive Attachment Disorder | American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

Adopting the Emotionally and Behaviorally Challenged Child

Reactive Attachment Disorder: RAD Signs, Symptoms & Causes

Reactive Attachment Disorder — Addresses challenges faced by parents of children with Reactive
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Old 08-08-2011, 01:49 PM
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We think the child that was just placed in our home has RAD...her previous adoptive placement with another lesbian couple failed...she split them in 3 months. My partner and I are extremely harsh and blunt with her. We cut her off when she speaks and says "no not okay, inappropriate and rude, DONT do it again." things like this work. the other day she was going to tell another child he was rude and she stopped herself and said "oh never mind.....(in a low voice) thats inappropriate and rude." THIS IS NOT IMPOSSIBLE. we literally JUST learned that she could be RAD, we were told she could be, but had no idea what it was, until now. Ive been telling everyone of our supports what RAD is and how they need to deal with her...and they understand. DO NOT GIVE UP, like most parents in here say. MY daughter doest steal yet, BUT she will try and take other kids toys and things that she finds at the pool...its a constant, i wish i had a mansion, i wish i had a cookie, i wish i could drink soda...we tell her "we wish we had a million dollars.." and she stops. We started parenting like this before we even realized the reality of who she was. BE FIRM...and STRICT...let them know you are serious, and its NOT funny. AT ALL. STICK TOGETHER. whether ur straight or gay, doesnt matter stick together, and they WILL learn, they r not stupid, or slow, or anything. One week is good another is terrible...but one thing to remember is that it is not their fault. My daughter has been through tremendous abuse and neglect...i repeat IT IS NOT their fault. Remember to tell them that you love them and that they can be angry and sad, and mad and whatever, but u still love them. PAT urself and ur partner on the back everyday, because you are picking up the slack for what abuse and neglect, other nasty adults did to them. We can heal our children.

We are in this 1 month and a half, and we r commited...be committed, no matter what.
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