Special Needs Make Puberty More Challenging


Let's remind this mom that this too shall pass.

A child without special needs issues going through puberty can turn the most calm household into a drama-zone. When hormones take over your kid, sometimes it takes all a parent has to keep from going crazy themselves.

But when you combine puberty with special needs issues--as is the case for theparksmama01's child--there are a lot of major challenges and possible repercussions to every decision a mother makes.Theparks has a 12-year old daughter who has multiple issues--down syndrome, deafness, ADHA and OCD. She goes to a special school during the week and comes home on weekends.

The daughter has had behavioral issues at  home and school in the past, but with the onset of puberty, everything seems to have escalated. On one visit home her daughter literally tried to suffocate her younger sister by placing a pillow over her head and sitting on it!  Dad put her in time out for quite awhile--mom wasn't home. Now her Ritalin dose has been pumped up and they are considering a psychiatrist.

Another option suggested by their doctor, however, is a med called Risperdal--an antipsychotic drug, that works by changing the chemical effects in the brain. Needless to say, this mom is frustrated, concerned, and needs support and advice. For more on this topic check out the conversation over in the Moms Parenting Special  Needs Kiddos group.

If anyone has a child on Risperdal, PM this mom so she can compare notes! Otherwise, please share your story of getting through puberty with a special needs child.

behavior, puberty, special needs


To add a comment, please log in with

Use Your CafeMom Profile

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Comment As a Guest

Guest comments are moderated and will not appear immediately.

salty... saltycoqui

My kids are both autistic but do not take medications. Both are in their tween years. My oldest will be 13 soon and changes have been noticed over the past couple of years! Oh those hormones! But my daughter not violent thank goodness. She gets counseling and life classes at school. I am in constant contact with her teachers. It's helped. As for her younger brother, he's doing many 'typical' things that most 11 yr olds do.

LoriW LoriW

My ex step daughter had a lot of problems, and I could never get her dad to see the seriousness of her behavior. She started saying really weird things around puberty. She would say things like, I want to pick up that stick and poke your eyes out. No matter how much I talked to her, she didn't hear me. Her eyes would glaze over and as soon as I stopped talking she would sat something like , can I kill you? I wasn't comfortable with her around my kids.

canad... canadianmom1974

Think of how "normal" kids are during puberty and remember back to when we were hitting puberty.  Then multiply that by special needs.  I work with special needs high school kids and some days those hormones are just raging.  But if there is one thing I could advocate for it would be sexual education, whether through the school or at home.  I know a lot of people, from parents to service workers are uncomfortable with teaching special needs people about their sexuality, but a high percentage of special needs people will be sexually abused (20% comes to mind, but I can't remember for sure what the # is).  If they are educated about their bodies, sexuality, what is private, what is a "good" touch or a "bad" touch, what is a good relationship, what abuse is, the things that we teach our children to protect them, then they will be better able to protect themselves.  If someone doesn't know that it's bad that their worker makes them do certain things, that they can say no, or even what is going on, then they are unable to protest, to protect themselves, to report it.

clovi... clovismommy25

My brother is on this med. It has done him worlds of good, he has ADHA , is bi-polar,and has asperger's (sp?) It is not for everyone, the dr we have dealt with dont just had it out like candy. If her dr is suggesting it, it might be worth a try. If it doesn't work, her mother can always tell her dr that she wants something different.

mamam... mamamom431

BOy oh Boy are we dealing with this one right now! Rispidal didn't work for us but,every kid is different.Mathew is on abilify and Concerta I sing thier praises everyday!!!!!I don't have advise on how to help but i wanted you to know you are not alone i am just barley hanging on myself!

sakee... sakeenah35

My son is 7 and I do worry about his issue with him. He is already going to a special school, so maybe they can prepare him for these type of things. He also has a socail worker to help.

1-6 of 6 comments