Aspergers Syndrome and Oppositional Defiant Disorder [ODD] Combination

Even the best-behaved Aspergers children can be difficult and challenging at times. Aspergers adolescents are often moody and argumentative. But if your Aspergers child or adolescent has a persistent pattern of tantrums, arguing, and angry or disruptive behaviors toward you and other authority figures, he or she may have oppositional defiant disorder (ODD). As many as one in 10 Aspergers children may have ODD in a lifetime.

Treatment of ODD involves therapy and possibly medications to treat related mental health conditions. As a parent, you don't have to go it alone in trying to manage an Aspergers child with ODD. Doctors, counselors and child development experts can help you learn specific strategies to address ODD.


It may be tough at times to recognize the difference between a strong-willed or emotional child and one with ODD. Certainly there's a range between the normal independence-seeking behavior of Aspergers kids and ODD. It's normal to exhibit oppositional behaviors at certain stages of a youngster's development.

However, your Aspergers child's issue may be ODD if your youngster's oppositional behaviors:
  • Are clearly disruptive to the family and home or school environment
  • Are persistent
  • Have lasted at least six months

The following are behaviors associated with ODD:
  • Defiance
  • Disobedience
  • Hostility directed toward authority figures
  • Negativity

These behaviors might cause your Aspergers child to regularly and consistently show these symptoms:
  • Academic problems
  • Acting touchy and easily annoyed
  • Aggressiveness toward peers
  • Anger and resentment
  • Argumentativeness with adults
  • Blaming others for mistakes or misbehavior
  • Deliberate annoyance of other people
  • Difficulty maintaining friendships
  • Frequent temper tantrums
  • Refusal to comply with adult requests or rules
  • Spiteful or vindictive behavior

Related mental health issues—

ODD often occurs along with other behavioral or mental health problems such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety or depression. The symptoms of ODD may be difficult to distinguish from those of other behavioral or mental health problems.

It's important to diagnose and treat any co-occurring illnesses because they can create or worsen irritability and defiance if left untreated. Additionally, it's important to identify and treat any related substance abuse and dependence. Substance abuse and dependence in Aspergers kids or adolescents is often associated with irritability and changes in the Aspergers child or adolescent's usual personality.


There's no clear cause underpinning ODD. Contributing causes may include:
  • A biochemical or neurological factor
  • A genetic component that when coupled with certain environmental conditions — such as lack of supervision, poor quality child care or family instability — increases the risk of ODD
  • The Aspergers child's inherent temperament
  • The Aspergers child's perception that he or she isn't getting enough of the parent's time and attention
  • The family's response to the youngster's style

Risk factors—

A number of factors play a role in the development of ODD. ODD is a complex problem involving a variety of influences, circumstances and genetic components. No single factor causes ODD. Possible risk factors include:
  • Being abused or neglected
  • Exposure to violence
  • Family instability such as occurs with divorce, multiple moves, or changing schools or child care providers frequently
  • Financial problems in the family
  • Harsh or inconsistent discipline
  • Having a parent with a mood or substance abuse disorder
  • Lack of supervision
  • Moms and dads with a history of ADHD, ODD or conduct problems
  • Poor relationship with one or both moms and dads
  • Substance abuse in the Aspergers child or adolescent

When to seek medical advice—

If you're concerned about your Aspergers child's behavior or your own ability to parent a challenging youngster, seek help from your doctor, a child psychologist or child behavioral expert. Your primary care doctor or your youngster's pediatrician can refer you to someone.

The earlier this disorder can be managed, the better the chances of reversing its effects on your Aspergers child and your family. Treatment can help restore your youngster's self-esteem and rebuild a positive relationship between you and your Aspergers child.

Tests and diagnosis—

Behavioral and mental health conditions are difficult to diagnose definitively. There's no blood test or imaging technique that can pinpoint an exact cause of behavioral symptoms, though these tests are sometimes used to rule out certain conditions. Physicians and other health professionals rely on:
  • Information gained from interviewing the Aspergers child
  • Information gathered from moms and dads and teachers, who may fill out questionnaires
  • Their clinical judgment and experience

Normal child and adolescent behavior and development can be challenging in their own right, but ODD is distinct due to the frequent and significant disruptions that are caused in the youngster's life at home, school, or in a job where authority figures have clear limits and expectations for behavior.

It can be difficult for doctors to sort and exclude other associated disorders — for example, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder versus ODD. These two disorders are commonly diagnosed together.


Many Aspergers kids with ODD have other treatable conditions, such as:
  • Anxiety
  • Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Depression

If these conditions are left untreated, managing ODD can be very difficult for the moms and dads, and frustrating for the affected Aspergers child. Kids with ODD may have trouble in school with teachers and other authority figures and may struggle to make and keep friends.

ODD may be a precursor to other, more severe behavioral disorders such as conduct disorder, but this is controversial.

Treatments and drugs—

Ideally, treatment for ODD involves your primary care doctor and a qualified mental health professional or child development professional. It may also help to seek the services of a psychologist specializing in family therapy.

These health professionals can screen for and treat other mental health problems that may be interfering with ODD, such as ADHD, anxiety or depression. Successful treatment of the often-coexisting conditions will improve the effectiveness of treatment for ODD. In some cases, the symptoms of ODD disappear entirely.

Successful treatment of ODD requires commitment and follow-through by you as a parent and by others involved in your youngster's care. Most important in treatment is for you to show consistent, unconditional love and acceptance of your Aspergers child — even during difficult and disruptive situations. Doing so can be tough for even the most patient moms and dads.

Learning or improving parental skills—

A mental health professional can help you learn or strengthen specific skills and parenting techniques to help improve your Aspergers child's behavior and strengthen your relationship with him or her. For example, you can learn how to:
  • Avoid power struggles
  • Establish a schedule for the family that includes specific meals that will be eaten at home together, and specific activities one or both moms and dads will do with the Aspergers child
  • Give effective timeouts
  • Limit consequences to those that can be consistently reinforced and if possible, last for a limited amount of time
  • Offer acceptable choices to your Aspergers child, giving him or her a certain amount of control
  • Recognize and praise your Aspergers child's good behaviors and positive characteristics
  • Remain calm and unemotional in the face of opposition

Success requires perseverance, hard work—

Although some parent management techniques may seem like common sense, learning to use them in the face of opposition isn't easy, especially if there are other stressors at home. Learning these skills may require counseling, parenting classes or other forms of education, and consistent practice and patience.

At first, your Aspergers child is not likely to be cooperative or to appreciate your changed response to his or her behavior. Expect that you'll have setbacks and relapses, and be prepared with a plan to manage those times. In fact, behavior often temporarily worsens when new limits and expectations are set. However, with perseverance and consistency, the initial hard work often pays off with improved behavior and relationships.

Individual and family counseling—

Individual counseling for your Aspergers child may help him or her learn to manage anger. Family counseling may help improve communication and relationships and help family members learn how to work together.

Lifestyle and home remedies—

At home, you can begin chipping away at problem behaviors by practicing the following:
  • Assign your Aspergers child a household chore that's essential and that won't get done unless the youngster does it. Initially, it's important to set your youngster up for success with tasks that are relatively easy to achieve and gradually blend in more important and challenging expectations.
  • Build in time together. Develop a consistent weekly schedule that involves moms and dads and youngster being together.
  • Model the behavior you want your Aspergers child to have.
  • Pick your battles. Avoid power struggles.
  • Recognize and praise your Aspergers child's positive behaviors.
  • Set limits and enforce consistent reasonable consequences.
  • Set up a routine. Develop a consistent daily schedule for your Aspergers child.
  • Work with your spouse or others in your household to assure consistent and appropriate discipline procedures.

Coping and support—

For yourself, counseling can provide an outlet for your own mental health concerns that could interfere with the successful treatment of your Aspergers child's symptoms. If you're depressed or anxious, that could lead to disengagement from your Aspergers child — and that can trigger or worsen oppositional behaviors. Here are some tips:
  • Be forgiving. Let go of things that you or your Aspergers child did in the past. Start each day with a fresh outlook and a clean slate.
  • Learn ways to calm yourself. Keeping your own cool models the behavior you want from your Aspergers child.
  • Take time for yourself. Develop outside interests, get some exercise and spend some time away from your Aspergers child to restore your energy.


Parag said...

oppositional defiant disorder is said to be a psychiatric disorder which will affect the person’s behavior. The basic three characteristics that you’d find in a child with ODD would be – defiance, aggression and the constant urge to irritate others

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

It's quite hard to relay so much info into a few sentences, but I need advice. My 15 year old asperger son has odd. At least that is what it seems like. He is rude, unpleasant, needy, annoying, demanding, lacks hygiene, wants to eat all of the time, over reacts at small annoyance for typical teens. His general disposition is that of an ogre. We can't take him out much, his brother can't stand to be around him, he can't be trusted to be alone, we don't have family or respite and I feel like I am serving a life sentence and am becoming hopless. We see a therapist every other week for coaching, discipline techniques, etc. But I can't get out of my pity party. I am not sure how much more I can take of this. I love my son, but I see no joy in our family's life right now or any time soon.

Anonymous said...

We have a 6yo who is a f'ing nightmare. I emphasize w/you but have no idea what to do.

Anonymous said...

It sucks that we have to go through this, but I am glad I'm not the only one who has a kid who is a nightmare. {Asperger's, ODD, ADHD and she just turned 13}

Anonymous said...

I could have written the above. He's in day treatment, takes psych meds, we have once per month respite but no family support. The discipline techniques are laughable. My son is incredibly intelligent and manipulative. By the end of the day I have just had it. My husband and I split up over this (my son is his stepson) as my husband could not stand to see my son so disrespectful toward me. I resent my son and feel guilty for it; I don't know what else to do.

angrymama said...

mine is 8. im sure he's ODD as well. im being accused of neglecting him because apparently his behaviour is consistant with the symptoms of chronic neglect. it hurts so much. i do everything for my kids, work three jobs so they can have all they need.i want help learning how to deal with his conditions not villifying.

Anonymous said...

My God! I don't know what to do except pray. Everything I have just read... I could have wrote. I love my son who has Asperger's Syndrome and ODD, but I don't know what to do. My son is 8 years old and I feel as though I have been sentenced to a life of misery. Our family is topsy turvy. God please help us. I can't give up but I feel like running away sometimes. There has to be hope for us and our children. All I can say is my fellow parents "Don't give up!" God be with us. Signed FRUSTRATED, TIRED, MOM.

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

I'm 13, and I have asperger's syndrome, oppositional defiant disorder, and obsessive compulsive disorder. I struggle with all of these disorders a lot, especially ODD. It really interferes with my life on a daily basis, because I can hardly do anything without getting irritated and angry at small things, and getting smart and short with people. I really don't mean to be this way; its just that I try really really hard to control myself and not get angry, and that is SO hard to do! It takes everything I have, everything that is inside of me to not lash out at someone, and get irritated; and even when I do succeed and manage to stop myself, I'm still STEAMING MAD in the inside. I get so irritated and angry with myself because of it. Sometimes I just feel like EXPLODING because it seems like I can never do anything right. I try and try and try to be respectful, be calm, and not explode, but its so hard, and it makes me so miserable sometimes! I was just wondering, does anyone have any suggestions to help me?

Anonymous said...

OMG my 8yr old son has been diagnosed with ODD and aspbergers and after reading the comments here im in tears, relieved im not alone but extremly sad that its happeneing and were all saying the same! Im a carer for adults with learning difficulties, with all my training and experience i have no idea how to help my son! its heartbreaking xx

Unknown said...

I had an Asperger's student in my freshman class this year. He never told me he was an Aspie, etc., but he didn't have to. Everything he said and did signified this disorder. Moreover, he had ODD (again, he had every symptom) and probably ADHD. I could tell when he was unraveling - his hygiene and behavior grew worse. I did everything permissible by the university to get this kid help - I sent out early alerts and notified all the powers. However, this kid's pride would never allow him to admit he had a problem, so instead of getting help, he spent the rest of the semester torturing me and the rest of the class. He would ask for help on improving his grade, then argue with me about my suggestions (you realize how illogical that is.) He constantly blurted out snide and sarcastic remarks during class, and his essays were filled with vengeful quips about me. The rest of the class hated him, and the one girl who tried to help him moved to another table mid semester, so he sat alone.

He has a fundamental inability to accept responsibility for his decisions and mistakes, so of course, everything was MY fault.

Now, I've had no training on mental disorders or how to deal with them other than what I have taught myself, and I felt inadequate to the task. I also realized I'd rather have had Ted Bundy and Jeffrey Dauhmer as students because at least they would be pleasant and easy to work with on the surface.

To be honest, I barely survived this semester with my patience in tact. I have no idea how this kid managed to get accepted into college, but he lacks the crudest, fundamental social skills to function here. He will never be able to hold a job or even get hired as he is now, so why is he here?

You parents - I don't know how you do it. If my son was like this, one of us would have to go and it would have to be me rather than him. I would've killed myself a long time ago. I couldn't take it.

I barely survived a semester and you have a lifetime. God bless you all. If anyone deserves Heaven, its you. A soldier in Iraq has it easier than you all, and some of us realize it.

Take care.

Unknown said...

I am a single mom of a 15 year old with aspergers and ODD. It is a challenge and I have fought for him for years. Something that works today doesn't work tomorrow. Others think you are a terrible parent because your kid is difficult.But you have other kids that are "normal". People don't understand what you go through to understand your child that has aspergers and ODD. They say only a normal teenage thing for whatever you talk about. But others that don't have a child with aspergers and ODD do not realize what it is like to deal with it. We have to stay strong and be positive. It is the only thing that works. Prepare them for a change in routine. Prepare them for whatever you can. It doesn't mean something won't happen or get broken. Seriously can't even tell you how much I've had to replace that was broke because of his anger. The only thing I found that works is to step back, take a deep breath and stay positive in an even tone. It is hard to do!Hang in there! I'm trying to.9090

frustrated said...

I was a step mom to a very troubled 11 yr old. My husband and his son walked
out 2 months ago. All me and his son did was argue. And it always seemed to be when I was trying to get him to do something for his own good. He does not want to share his father with anyone. Not even his sister. He was very disrespectful and mean to me. Until recently I thought he was just being a brat. I'm beginning to believe his son has serious problems. His father says I just should have been more understanding of his son. I love them all but am frustrated because I'm losing my husband and his son is going to have serious problems if his dad doesn't get him help

Unknown said...

My son is nearly 8 years old and is currently being assessed for his behaviour. I believe he is possibly a combination of Aspergers and ODD. I'm finding it so hard to cope with his defiance and daily argumentative nature. Deep down he has a good heart and will get upset if he knows he has upset you (only later once he reflects on his actions) but his need to be in control is so difficult to manage. He constantly blames his 5 yr old brother for everything even if you see him do it and he knows you saw him, he will still blame others. It's very sad to read all of your comments above and the idea he may get worse as he gets older terrifies me. I love my son so much and I always make my life difficult by never giving in to him and by always taking him out of his comfort zone, even if it upsets him. I want him to be the best he can and it breaks my heart everyday imagining how this will affect him as he gets older. I hate arguing with my child every day, about everything. It's exhausting as emotionally I'm torn with mixed feeling of anger and love towards him. I'm never going to give up on my son and I hope to get a diagnosis soon, but I hope to get support on how best to cope with him. It was very sad to read the comment above from the 13 yr old suffering from this and I can only imagine how it must feel for those of you suffering with this. I don't really know what else to say?

Unknown said...

I have a son with aspergers and now my grandson is struggling with what seems to be ODD and aspergers , this article is incredibly helpful but feel I cannot show my daughter as the list of risk factors is (in my opinion) is very finger pointing

I will have to find a way to let her read it with out that bit as I know she will only end up worrying that peoole will blame her

Andy Ward said...

Reading these comments has been very reassuring that my son is not the only child in the world who can be such an absolute handfull EVERY day!. At almost 12 our biggest problem is getting him off to school...a daily challenge and emotionally draining for my wife and i!.
I compare keeping him "onside" to the act of spinning plates. Take your eye off of the ball for too long and suffer the consequences !!. Thank you to all who have taken the time to post comments, it's nice to know we are not alone :-)

Unknown said...

My 7 year old is aspergers and adhd. He argues over everything, is so disrespectful, blames everyone else, every time we say anything he explodes. He is making us so miserable. I'm at my wits end! My daughter is 16 and struggles socially which has resulted in negative behaviors and now has a mental health condition. To sum it up, I have done everything to give my kids a good life and between the two of them, they are tearing me apart!

mindy said...

I found similarities in all that has been mentioned with my 15 year old boy With aspergers and other problems Medically. He doesn't attend school anymore and is waiting on home schooling. His life has taken over mine. Living breathing sleeping it. At times I feel so low as it's just us two. He blames me for everything. Hardly speaks properly to me. Mostly angry with me and can't trust me as he heard me talking about him to my sister. won't be in same room as me always wants to be alone. As well as lots of other stuff. He doesn't know as yet he suffers with aspergers. Can't see how to get thru to him as hes always right and everyone else wrong. Thanks for listening. Mj.

lovesmydghtr said...

I have an 18yr old dghtr with Aspergers and ODD/ADHD. She is such an intelligent girl. But, I can totally relate to all the posts here. We have been to counselor after counselor and psychiatrists. None of the counseling ever helped because she's always blamed everyone else for everything. It's tiring, exhausting and does suck the life out of you. I struggle hard to stay balanced as I am a single mother. My youngest has been affected greatly by her sister. Like others have posted, I think my aspie loves her sister but also has a great hate/resentment toward her. I think that mostly stems from her being envious of not being like her. I don't think she wants to say and do the things she does but somehow can't control it. We've tried many antidepressants; most make her anger worse. We've tried a couple adhd meds and they have the same affect. These are our kids but these extreme moods and arguments make it really hard to want to be around them because it's mostly turmoil filled times. And, as parents we feel guilty as though we've done something wrong to cause this. I have to admit there are good times with her and I cherish those times. We seem to go through what I call seasons. She can go through periods where she's really good and then crashes for months. Has anyone had any success with any medications or anything?? I'm wondering if a mood stabilizer would be of help?? Stay strong. These kids need us as we are the only constant they have!!

Unknown said...

I have a son with ODD and Conduct Disorder. He is highly intelligent, so that makes it difficult for my husband (son's stepdad) to understand that some of the behavior of my son cannot be helped. This morning, for example, my son tells us that he wants me to drive him to school because some kids are picking on him on the bus. Husband asks what they are doing to him, son cannot provide an answer so husband assumes son is lying (which son does all the time) and says as much. This in turn upsets son and causes him to be frustrated, husband keeps on asking for examples of what's happening and son still can't give straight answer. Son starts to almost growl from frustration. Husband blows up, yells at son, calls him an "effing" liar since he can't give clear examples. Meanwhile, I'm in the middle trying to referee both of them. Husband has a point, but delivery sucks. Son gets upset, crying, cannot give clear examples, etc. and ends up apologizing to husband and me, off to school son goes. I tell husband that he is NOT to yell and cuss at the kids. Again. I have had it with this stress.
I don't know what to do to fix this problem. Daughter is 14 and hormonal and snotty and smarts us off all the time, husband has no patience with her issues, either. This is husband's first go at raising kids, he has no experience and married us when my kids were 9 and 11, kids are now 12 and 14 and he still has no patience. I love him, but I don't love this about him. Yes, my kids are trying and have problems but how can I make everyone get along?

Angela Clark said...

I feel your pain. My son is the same way. I also feel the way you feel....torn. I love him very much. Did you ever get a diagnosis??

Unknown said...

I feel just like this! Is there any help out there? Having a hard 13 yrs! Son w aspergers,intermittent explosive disorder, and add and petimal seizures.

Unknown said...

I feel just like this! Is there any help out there? Having a hard 13 yrs! Son w aspergers,intermittent explosive disorder, and add and petimal seizures.

Analia Calantha Zamora said...

I have a 14 yr old son who has Asperger and paranoid schizophrenia and a physical disability. I am at my whits end. He is fixated on his older brother so much that he cant touch, sit or breath walk through the air that his older brother who is 16 walks through. The older brother doesn't provoke his at all, and has at times became suicidal because of his brother. Does anyone else deal with this kind of fixations?

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to say that I have an almost 10 year old son with Aspergers and every single symptom of ODD. We have tried many therapies, social skills groups and have recently introduced anxiety and depression medication. While this has made his outbursts and anxiety more calm, he is now starting to be mean and vindictive. We are going to try adjusting his medication. But, I have also heard wonderful things about Asperger Experts. They are two gentlemen with Aspergers that have videos, coaching and classes available to those with Aspergers and those who have relatives with Aspergers. Their point of view is priceless. I ordered the Asperger's 101: Breaking the Barriers and it helped me tremendously with understanding his point of view. Now, I'm seriously considering the coaching. It is so amazing to hear that others share in this struggle. Something else that may be helpful is to read Eustacia Cutler's book "A Thorn in My Pocket". She is Temple Grandin's mom, and it helped me make a lot of sense out of things. Especially when you don't even know why or what to do. She helped me to realize that working hard, staying the course, and getting professional training and help are worth it!

mich said...

This is my son exactly. What helps? So far nothing has ever worked! He has us all going crazy.

Mary said...

I could have written this - we are living the EXACTLY same life!

Our family has been irrevocably alter by the gravitational tilt my non-neurotypical daughter exerts on our family. I love her so much & wouldn't trade her in a million years. I struggle every day to be the best advocate/cheerleader/role model mother for both of my girls yet always feel like a failure. I am equally sad for my other daughter who is growing up in this chaos. I wish I had advice to offer other than to share that you are not alone. I work every day on readjusting my own expectations for both her future and my own.

Tracey said...

My husband is leaving us. He is my child's stepfather. My child is diagnosed Aspergers, ODD, and gender dysphoria. She was born male assigned. She's never been easy. My husband thought he could handle it and between my kid and the stressed out person I've become after 17 years, I guess we're not that great a package. My biggest worry now is what her future will be. She is like many of the kids described in the above comments, behaviorally. It does feel like a life sentence but also I love her so.

Unknown said...

I am just now to the point with my 14 year old amazing, intelligent, funny, resilient, and utterly stubborn, incredibly ridiculous and irrational son to have him assessed for high functioning autism. I have advocated for him for years simply because I always knew something was off but refused years ago to put him on any sort of medication after learning about The Nurtured Heart Approach. That said, our families life has orbited around him for as long as I can remember. This makes me wonder now looking back if this is where the ODD piece comes into play. It has been such a struggle to keep this boy from melting down and from incredible public outbursts that I think we have responded In all kinds of different ways to try and find what would work. Ignoring, yelling, grounding, reward charts, and sometimes just plain reacting because we are out of ideas. That's definitely inconsistent parenting...LOL! But one thing I can say...we have 5 children and he is the 4th and by far the biggest challenge. We have always known there was something different. And with all of that said and all the hard work and struggle he holds such a dear place in my heart. I love this boy...no more and no less than my other kids...but man does he keep me on my toes. I do worry about him though...with his irrational and overly intellectual and odd arguments; just to argue. He has friends but he does not miss them much and it doesn't really bother him if they don't go out of their way to connect with him. But he's happy (when he's not arguing or blaming or lashing out) nothing seems to get under his skin for very long. While I'm still laying in the aftermath of one of his battles he is already moved on to the next thing and has no understanding if I'm still annoyed. It's quite a voyage and I still refuse to agree that it's a lost cause and continue to hope that there is a special little place in the world for him where he will blossom and find his perfect fit. I still will have him assessed because I guess part of me just wants to know so that I can have more serenity and hopefully learn a technique that works better for him. As of now, mostly the only time there is war in our house is when I hold him accountable for school...that's our battle because there is no perfect niche for him to learn right now except the private one that he has created for himself when he has no boundaries and learns with no limits...on his own...buried in technology...or going on long walks, bike rides and skateboard trips for hours and comes home smiling ear to ear just because he was one with the outdoors and feels grounded again! It's so confusing raising a boy like this in a world like the one we live in today. I'm still forging ahead and I hope none of you give up on your special kiddos. I guess there needs to be some serenity to find peace.

Unknown said...

My six year old son is ODD, ADHD and more. I agree it feels like a life sentence sometimes, and then he will turn around and be the sweetest child for a little while and it makes me feel so guilty for feeling that way. We have started PCIT Play Therapy a couple of weeks ago. We are also starting a new anxiety medicine. We had to take him off of the ADHD medicine because believe it or not it was making him even more emotional (crying). I keep telling myself that God would not have given us this special little boy if we couldn't handle it but sometimes WOW. I'm glad I read these posts. It's nice not to feel alone.

Linda Cat said...

Hi. My 9 yo Aspie has severe ODD. Here's what has helped us a lot: consistent, predictable schedule; 1mg melatonin at 5:30p for 8p bedtime; no ADHD meds, they worsened his violence (heard from a reputable dr that stimulants aggravate ODD in aspbergers); lots of silliness and humor; faith in Jesus(the one who gives me hope); and reading The Explosive Child: A New Approach for Understanding and Parenting Easily Frustrated, Chronically Inflexible Children by Ross Greene PhD. Have read 15 books, kept only this one. Specifically addresses ODD and then turns it upside down. Gives scenarios and specific advice on how to best handle seemingly impossible children. He doesn't offer a magic formula, but he's the one that has come the closest. I don't feel utterly overwhelmed anymore. God bless all you brave moms!

Linda Cat said...

It's been heartbreaking and strangely reassuring to read everyone's posts. All u moms deserve compassion and major props. I have been searching far and wide for advice and answers. A few things are really helping us to better handle our 9 yo Aspie. 1. We took him off Vyvanse and Intuniv. Both seemed to increase his anger and violence. 2. We give him .5 mg melatonin at 5:30p sharp. Gets him yawning by 7:30 every night. Stays asleep until 7a next morning. 3. Give him tokens when he behaves and/or complies. Redeems them for "treasures" or TV time. 4. Reading "The Explosive Child: New approach to Understanding and parenting easily frustrated chronically inflexible children". Dr. Ross Greene. The title alone describes the last 6 mos of our lives. Read many books, kept only this on. God bless, LMW

Ms understood said...

I know this is super late but he probably couldn't give you clear examples because either its too painful for him to admit or they forget the really bad stuff that happens to him. My son was like that when he was being bullied.

ASC Healthcare said...

People with Asperger syndrome can find it harder to read the signals that most of us take for granted. This means they find it more difficult to communicate and interact with others which can often lead to high levels of anxiety and confusion. Asperger syndrome is most definitely not caused by a person’s upbringing, their social circumstances and is not the fault of the individual with the condition and should not be confused with conduct disorder.

Aggy said...

Thanks. Between the ever present tension of trying to encourage our children to strive for a fulfilling life, and fighting constant feelings of defeat, we must always hope.
Accepting them usually means accepting their concept of the world in which they are expected to exist.
I chose not to push for my "aspies" continual education. What interest she has she can research through the miracle of her computer. The gifts she does not possess for tolorating the world won't keep her from participating in her quest to understand it.

Unknown said...

I been looked into neglect I give my son lots attention he has aspergers. But the school s special Ed teacher thinks he's not even though he has seen 2 doctors saying he is . He is looking into ODD. Due to constant tantrums.. he's teacher says why are you not doing nothing.. the special Ed teacher words things differently. Which is upsetting

Unknown said...

I am a mom of a 15 year old boy who has aspergers and 99.9% sure odd. He has made it so hard for us always mad and arguing with everyone. He is never wrong and gets physical with his younger brother and sister. We constantly have to watch our Ps and Qs around him because we don't know what will set him off one day to the next and punishing him is very hard and is getting even harder. He doesn't bathe or use deodorant, which leaves him going to school smelly but he won't listen. He is addicted to porn and so we have put interventions here at home but he still looked at school. The 1st time he got ISS the most recent he got OSS plus probation for the rest of the semester as well as losing all of his computer privileges. So I grounded him from all electronics along with movies and any games till he gets his privileges back at school and made him write an apology letter. He seemed fine at first but 3 days ago he threw his TV, smashed his telescope through it, broke his razor and fan remote against the wall and told me it was all my fault he looks at porn because I should have had the sex talk with him years ago, that I am unfair,mean, and I took all his family away. Then he tells my younger two they should be scared of me, and that my husband and I should get a divorce. He still hasn't calmed down and this is by far the worst it has ever been. My other 2 kids told him I was a great mom and that he didn't know what he was talking about so he said I never defend him, which I have been doing his WHOLE LIFE. I don't know how much more I can bare. He used to be so loving and affectionate and mommies little man and now he is always angry. I love him so much and my kids are my world, I just wished I knew what to do

Seenbean said...

Thank you for the helpful advice. My son has just started showing all the signs of ODD, before this year it wasn't as frequent but it's getting ridiculous I feel sorry for the teacher it makes me want to homeschool him for their sake. My son gets upset when things don't go as expected and he responds very well to praise and positive reinforce.ent. He is in Cub Scouts and loves it, probably the structure and the parallel (play) time spent with peers. His behaviour is very difficult. My husband is very good at getting my son to explain his behavior by taking away privileges. It helps us to know what his thoughts are but he still lacks natural accountability and common sense judgement. He has empathy toward babies and toddlers. I feel like he responds best to love and when I am at peace he can sense it and is happier. Thanks again. Good luck to all of You! I am also looking into biomedical treatment, dietition dietitian and naturopathic doctors. We will see.

H said...

This sounds like our 8 year old. Have you found anything to help? We don't know what to do. Regular discipline doesn't work.

TooMuchMadness said...

I'm so glad I found this site. I've felt so isolated and judged for years by people that have no idea. People have told me they could fix my son if they had him for a few days because I just don't discipline enough or demand enough respect. However I have 3 other children that have no issues. My son is 13 diagnosed with autism, adhd and bipolar. He's getting evaluated soon for ODD and they mentioned BPD and schizophrenia. He's always been difficult, enjoys annoying people, loves to push buttons, obsesses to maddening levels over material things, wakes up everyday with a high level of irritation and anger, has never had a friend, warped perceptions of interactions with peers (thinking people are his friends when they are actually bullying him), flat emotions unless achieving to annoy someone or being angry. So he smiles when he's being annoying, showing no emotion, and escalating to anger in a hearbeat. That's his range. He just started acting out at school and in one month went from never being in trouble at school to lunch detention, after school detention, in school suspension, out of school suspension. I got emails from teachers, calls from the vice principal then the principal. None of the behaviors surprise me, as they have all been experienced at home for years. He's had a number of mobile therapists that all tell me he's one big question mark and no one's ever experienced a child like him. Real comforting (sarcasm should be noted) I'm terrified of what puberty will bring and believe this may be just the beginning.

Stump Town Girl said...

My son is currently being evaluated for aspergers. After 5 yrs of therapy and no answers (he is now 11) finally someone suggested an autism evaluation. He only has temper tantrums with change but as he gets older they are getting more severe. He is now refusing to go to school. All day everyday is a struggle for me. My husband and his family are not supportive. I have lost 2 immediate family members this year. Have had surgery this month. And we have no family in the state. I am essentially dealing with this alone. Hoping we finally get answers to help our son and our family.

tyyashomestuff said...

Not sure you'll see this, but since you posted over a year ago, but I wanted to suggest getting him tested for PANDAS if you haven't already. You said you noticed a recent change for the worse, and it made me wonder if there might be a physical cause. I'm the mom of a 15-year-old who has many of the behaviors everyone's talked about here. My daughter definitely has ADHD and probably Asperger's (although she's only been diagnosed with high-functioning ASD) and mood disorder. But I also discovered just a month ago that she has PANDAS. It's a virus often caused by strep. The result is an autoimmune response to the strep where the infection attacks certain areas of the brain and triggers behavior changes like tics, OCD, or aggression. It is diagnosed with a blood test and can be treated with antibiotics. We are doing that now, but her doctor isn't sure it will alleviate any of her behavior issues because she's probably had it for a long time. I was unaware of this illness until just recently and never had a doctor suggest testing for it before because they all assumed the ADHD, autism and mood disorder were the cause of her extreme behavior.

tyyashomestuff said...

I suggest getting your son tested for PANDAS if you haven't already. My 15-year-old daughter was diagnosed with this just a few weeks ago. It's an infection often caused by strep. The strep triggers an autoimmune response and attacks certain areas of the brain that cause behaviors like tics, OCD, aggression, childlike, clingy behavior and other issues. It's diagnosed with a blood test and can be treated with antibiotics. We are doing that now but her doctor isn't sure if it will improve my daughter's behavior because she's probably had the infection for years. My daughter also has ADHD and HFA. She was also diagnosed with mood disorder and it's been suggested that she has ODD. At this point, I guess it's impossible to know if she actually has mood disorder and ODD or if the tantrums and aggressive behavior she's had all these years were caused by the PANDAS infection.

Gigi said...

Have you tried medication? What if it has to do with a mood disorder.

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