Author Topic: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors  (Read 711 times)

CAMRAMan

  • Formerly A Warwickshire Lad
Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« on: October 07, 2018, 12:07:08 pm »
Our son, 16, presents us with many, many problems. He is heavily into drugs - cannabis for the most part - but has dabbled in others. That's not uncommon in teenagers, of course. However, he has been caught in school and been the subject of a managed move to another one, where he successfully sat his GSCEs. He is extremely intelligent & has discussed quantum physics with his well-educated grandfather and run rings round him.

He displays some abnormalities (in my view) that make him 'different'
  • He fails to realise risky/dangerous behaviour from normal - which is why he gets caught and has put his health in severe jeopardy on two occasions because of drug experiments
  • He is easily led
  • He has low self-esteem
  • He is extremely abusive and doesn't apologise afterwards/sees no need to
  • He empathises with nothing - except perhaps his similarly drug-addled 'mates'
  • He has had a long series of friends, but no one constant as a best mate
  • He is very manipulative
  • He steals and justifies it in his mind as acceptable
  • He has had many opportunities over the last two years to make better choices, yet carries on with his bad choices
Now, I don't know what that all points to, but it is leading him down a very dark path at the moment. I suspect there may be underlying reasons why he does what he does, but that's where my 'knowledge' ends. If there is a reason, at least I'd know why and maybe be able to seek help for him.

How can I get him tested for some sort of disorder? I really hope it doesn't have to involve CAHMS, though I suspect it will. They have not proved themselves to be competent or able to help.
Is there a private option?
Haggerty F, Haggerty R, Tomkins, Noble, Carrick, Robson, Crapper, Dewhurst, Macintyre, Treadmore, Davitt.

Re: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2018, 01:38:53 pm »
I am absolutely not an expert, but I think this type of diagnosis tends to take a relatively long time. It might be worth asking the school if they’ve taken any actions towards an assessment, although I believe you should be notified/included in law. I don’t know the private routes, but your GP might be an alternative start point. Probably you need his cooperation and engagement too.

Sorry to hear what must be very difficult for you and your wife/partner.

Mike

Re: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2018, 02:01:39 pm »
Our son, 16, presents us with many, many problems. He is heavily into drugs - cannabis for the most part - but has dabbled in others. That's not uncommon in teenagers, of course. However, he has been caught in school and been the subject of a managed move to another one, where he successfully sat his GSCEs. He is extremely intelligent & has discussed quantum physics with his well-educated grandfather and run rings round him.

He displays some abnormalities (in my view) that make him 'different'
  • He fails to realise risky/dangerous behaviour from normal - which is why he gets caught and has put his health in severe jeopardy on two occasions because of drug experiments
  • He is easily led
  • He has low self-esteem
  • He is extremely abusive and doesn't apologise afterwards/sees no need to
  • He empathises with nothing - except perhaps his similarly drug-addled 'mates'
  • He has had a long series of friends, but no one constant as a best mate
  • He is very manipulative
  • He steals and justifies it in his mind as acceptable
  • He has had many opportunities over the last two years to make better choices, yet carries on with his bad choices
Now, I don't know what that all points to, but it is leading him down a very dark path at the moment. I suspect there may be underlying reasons why he does what he does, but that's where my 'knowledge' ends. If there is a reason, at least I'd know why and maybe be able to seek help for him.

How can I get him tested for some sort of disorder? I really hope it doesn't have to involve CAHMS, though I suspect it will. They have not proved themselves to be competent or able to help.
Is there a private option?

There's definitely a private option providing you have private health cover like BUPA for example.  When our daughter started secondary school she began to struggle with the large class sizes of 30 so we got a referral by our GP to attend an appointment with a doctor at our local private hospital.  We had to pay an excess of £150 as this type of thing wasn't covered by our private health care policy but who we saw was brilliant.  He sat our daughter down, took notes of everything she said and a couple of weeks later we received a report agreeing with our thoughts that she had autism, and detailed why her current setting wasn't appropriate and suggested a placement at a special school in the local area.  Armed with this we then had a meeting with the schools SEN officer and County education officer and they agreed she should move to this other school.  She is now very happy in her new school and with a class size of 15 who can blame her! 

Yes you are right - CAHMS was probably the right channel to go down initially but I would recommend private moving forward if you can.

Good luck.

Re: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2018, 08:07:35 pm »
How would a diagnosis help you and or your son? The issues you are having are clear. It sounds like you would like some support, but given the context of the issues you might want to think if and how a diagnosis could result in that?

I'm a non clinical psychologist with a son with a diagnosis (from a validated test conducted by qualified professionals) of autism. The additional support it's generated is meagre and inconsistent, but my son finds it helpful.

Good luck.

Sent from my Lenovo P2a42 using Tapatalk


Re: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2018, 08:34:43 pm »
With regards to your son, Dr Mek, I'm minded of my cousin who is now 51. He was always a 'bit odd' when we were kids in the 70s and 80s. Autism was not talked about and kids at school who I now realise were aspergic were just viewed as weirdoes and avoided.

My cousins parents refused to accept there was anything untoward with their son, and in doing so denied him the meagre support that was on offer. But far worse than that was condemning him to a life a being a 'weirdo' in his own mind, rather than just somebody with Aspergers, similar to loads of other people.

Young CAMRA doesn't necessarily need a diagnosis, but he does need somebody to listen to him in a non-judgemental manner. His drug and alcohol use sounds very much to me like a form of self-harm.




CAMRAMan

  • Formerly A Warwickshire Lad
Re: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2018, 10:00:45 pm »
Even if such an assessment were to result in a ‘clean’ bill of health psychologically, at least we’d know. Not that it’s an exact science. I’m reminded of a Half Man Half Biscuit line ‘Is your child autistic, or is he perhaps just a twat?’. If it’s the former, we’ll have ammunition to seek help. If the latter, well, perhaps he’ll mature.
Haggerty F, Haggerty R, Tomkins, Noble, Carrick, Robson, Crapper, Dewhurst, Macintyre, Treadmore, Davitt.

Re: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2018, 10:03:35 am »
In some ways, it seems that being a parent is about choosing the right times to act on your worrying and try to do something (more), and accepting those when you should do nothing.
It feels like your current situation with your son is definitely one of the former, and following up on all avenues available is a good plan. Good luck.

Oscar's dad

  • Cheers!
Re: Testing for Psychological Conditions in Minors
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2018, 10:35:17 am »
Even if such an assessment were to result in a ‘clean’ bill of health psychologically, at least we’d know. Not that it’s an exact science. I’m reminded of a Half Man Half Biscuit line ‘Is your child autistic, or is he perhaps just a twat?’. If it’s the former, we’ll have ammunition to seek help. If the latter, well, perhaps he’ll mature.

Bingo, nail hit squarely on the head.  Getting a diagnosis is key, you can't effectively fix a problem until you have some idea of what it is.  Even if the diagnosis is he's just a twat its still better than not knowing. 

Your situation rings true here, from what we have discovered it could be a whole host of things, ADHD, autism...