adopting a special needs child - FamilyEducation
adopting a special needs child
12/09/2007 at 20:18 PM

Is there anyone out there who has adopted a child with special needs? I adopted a beautiful girl whom was prenatally exposed to Methamphetamines. As a result, she has secondary ADHD, a VP shunt, and complex partial seizures. She is now 7.8 years old.


My daughter is 7 also. I didn't adopt, she is my bio child and she has epilepsy. Hers is Benign Rolandia or Rolandic (not sure how to spell it) and she has her seizures after falling asleep at night. They started out as grand mal or tonic clonic seizures and then more recently (last 1 1/2 yrs) they've been focal. So needless to say I don't sleep well because I'm always worried about her. She has vomited a few times while having them and one lasted about 17 minutes. The neurologist says it is genetic and that she will likely outgrow them as a teenager. How often is your child having seizures? How are you handling the ADHD? My friend's daughter who was born 2 days before my daughter was recently diagnosed with ADHD. The doctor is recommending meds. My friend didn't want to put her on medicine. What is secondary ADHD and a VP shunt?


My daughter's ADHD is a result of the birth mom taking Meth amphetamines (making it a secondary condition). Morgan is taking Guanfacine (generic for Tenex). I went for a day without her taking meds, and noticed a big difference (she had a difficult time following directions and staying on task). The medication helps her focus. I don't care for meds either but I have to do what is in Morgan's best interest not mine.  I did have her do neurofeedback through the Drake Institute. I helped a little bit. There is a book that I use called 1 2 3 Magic by Thomas Phelan, Ph.D. With those whom have ADD/ADHD you have to follow through with discipline and this book gives me guidelines in an easy to read way.

Because Morgan was born hydrocephalic (aka water on the brain), she needed an extra vein (that's the shunt) to drain the fluid into the abdomen.

Hi Trisscity Secondary ADHD is a result of the Meth that the birth mother took (otherwise my daughter might not of been born with ADHD). Does that make sense? A VP shunt is a tube that goes from the cranium down into her abdomen. My daughter was born with meningitus and sepsis causing hydrocephaly (aka fluid on the brain). The tube drains any excess fluid. Scooby

First of all, I'd like to say, what a noble thing you've done adopting a special needs child. Although it's difficult to see these children struggle, it's also rewarding to see how much they progress w/ the appropriate treatment and love. Although we've never adopted a child, our son also has special needs. He's 4 and has not yet been officially diagnosed. We don't know why our son was born w/ these difficulties, but we have gotten him all the help we can, and we've seen tremendous progress in him. We are truly proud of our son for how far he has come. We would never trade him for anything! I took your advice and ordered the book "1 2 3 Magic". My husband and I still have our difficult days (w/ both our children), and we cld always use some extra advice. Thx!

Dear Concerned, I hope that you find the book worth your while in reading. For me it's a keeper. You might want to also try meditation cds for children (especially when it's a rough day). My daughter goes to bed listening to classical music. She now loves classical music. My daughter also has a chore chart and behavior chart (she just loves the stickers/points that she earns and what incentives she can get with them).

Hi Scooby, What a great job you're doing! I just rec'd the 1-2-3 Magic book I ordered, and I'm anxious to give it a go. Also, love your idea of classical music CDs. We had a few when my boys were babies, but haven't played them in a while. I'll have to dig them out of the archives. I seem to remember they soothed my kids, and put them right to sleep. Thx!

I hope that you like 123 Magic. They just came out with one for kids to read. How is the classical music going?

Hi Scooby, How r things w/ you? Thx for the recommendation on the book for kids to read. I'll look into it. Right now, my kids are only 4 and 3 (obviously not at reading level yet), but I suppose they cld benefit from the book in the future. Also, my kids LOVE any kind of music, but at night, I put the classical music on (like you suggested) and it definitely has a soothing affect on them. Thx for all your great ideas. I hope all is well on your end too. Regards, concerned

HI im new here and my child is adopted and I can't ever get her to be happy what do I do

When did you adopt your child? Was it an open or closed adoption? How old is your child? Right now my daughter has learned to back talk, so I'm trying to figure out what is the best disciplinary course to take (with the help of 123 Magic). She is also going to day camp, but finds it socially challenging (today she told a counselor to shut up). Any suggestions from cyberspace on how to deal with this? Thanks Scoobydoodle

How old is your daughter? I wld nip the back talk in the bud right away. Respect is a huge deal in parenting. Also, make sure you respect your daughter as well. Give her choices, but also set limits. Use the 1-2-3 Magic book as a guide to help you. In the long run, you will both be happier. Good luck!

I ended up having her work on her penmanship by writing the counselor an apology note. She also had to read a manners book, and had to television the rest of the day. Was she pissed? You bet, and she ended up having a 5 minute time out (tantrums are an automatic time out). In order for Morgan to come out of being in time out, she had to take 3 deep breaths. FYI: If you have trouble getting your young child to sleep, put on some classical music. Have them lye down in their bed, lights off, tell them to close their eyes, and just gently massage the tops of their feet for about 5 minutes. While you are massaging their feet, you close your eyes and visualize the room full of your love, gods love, etc... for your child... and whatever other positive spiritual thoughts that may come your way.

hai scooby! can u adopt me? im 15 years old and my birthday is september 21 im born in 1996 also if you adopt me can u buy me diapers and a wheelchair? plzzz...