Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A Loving Mother, or Willful Disobedience to my Husband?

Ok, things are a bit calmer since I last logged on. Got Bucket an emergency appointment with his "behavioral specialist." True to form, Bucket acted out. He threw stuff, screamed at the doctor, spit on the floor. I was mortified and embarrassed, but at least the doctor knew I wasn't kidding when I said it was bad around our house.
Bucket had not been on medication in over two years, and I liked it that way. He is only 9 years old, and I don't like my son being on mind altering medications. However, I also don't like autism, and I don't like manic depression, and I don't like my son trying to kill himself. (We had a second suicide attempt at school, so the laying in the street thing was not a one time deal.)
So Bucket is on a medication called Risperdal. Do I like it? Well, he is calmer. He is sleeping at night. He is cheerful during the day. He is getting perfect scores on his behavior report at school. He wants me to read him stories about whales and he is asking to go to Sea World. He is being funny, dynamic, and pleasant. But the fact that my son needs medication in order to be...somewhat human? No, I don't like that.
Here is my reasoning.
If you had a child with diabetes, would you take away their insulin?
If you had a child with lazy eye, would you deny them their glasses?
If you had a child with a heart malfunction, would you withhold surgery?
No, you probably wouldn't. You'd give your child what he or she needs. So it is with a heavy heart that I allowed Bucket to be medicated.

Mr. R just told me this morning that now that Bucket is sleeping throughout the night (and this has only been a week of him sleeping) he wants me to take Bucket off meds and try the Melatonin again. Melatonin is a natural supplement that aids in sleep. However, it didn't seem to work for Bucket. I used the Melatonin the entire time we were waiting on the emergency appointment, and he was only sleeping for about 3 to 4 hours a night.
I am hesitant to take Bucket off the Risperdal. Mr. R is accusing me of doping up our child for my own benefit.
Admittedly, this does benefit me. I get sleep. I get a child who is more willing to obey.
But the meds seem to be benefitting Bucket too. He is not telling me that he wishes he was dead. Or that God hates him. Or trying to scratch and bite his own arms until he bleeds. Or slamming his head into walls, trying to get the voices out of his head. Or attacking people at school.
At this time, I don't want to take Bucket off Risperdal, but Mr. R insists. I am at my wits end here. Mr. R says these things, but who is the person who deals with the fallout? ME. He is off in his truck, merrily seeing the country, while I am here 24/7 on my own with literally no help.
So, do I obey my husband and take Bucket off the medications and possibly see Bucket spiral into deep depression and suicidal thoughts, or be defiant and stand up for my baby?


Julia said...

Stand up for your baby! I think as a society we overmedicate, and I would also be uncomfortable with putting one of my children on drugs for the very reasons you listed. In your case I think it is right.

I understand the argument for obeying your husband, and I used to try my best to follow it 100% but one day I saw the damage this was doing to my children. I won't go into details, but I put my foot down hard. I thought my marriage might end. In the end, my husband did what I said needed to be done and he even thanked me for pointing out his error later. Perhaps if you showed him what you wrote here it might be easier for him to understand your point of view. Surely he wants his son to live the best life he can too.

By the way, I found you by following your name from a comment on anna s' blog.

Sarah R said...

Well, thanks Julia! So far I am following your advice, even before I knew you! ;)
My husband is a wonderful guy, but if you read throughout the blog, you would know that he is a driver and gone for weeks at a time while I handle the household on my own. So I made the choice to keep him on medication for now.
Thank you so much for your wise words!
Isn't Anna's blog awesome? I click on there several times a day to see what she's up to! And I can't wait to see her wedding photos.