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Old 01-07-2011, 02:40 PM   #4501
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Re: Uh-oh

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don't mention the nick-name you got here when you first gave your "opinions" and see if anyone comes up with it organically there.
[confidential to Hank] I forget what his nickname is, hmu on the pm [/confidential to Hank]
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Old 01-07-2011, 02:47 PM   #4502
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Re: Uh-oh

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[confidential to Hank] I forget what his nickname is, hmu on the pm [/confidential to Hank]
Narcissism may not be a mental illness anymore but I bet you could get this fecta- OCD awarded a page in the desk reference
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Old 12-01-2011, 12:29 PM   #4503
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.


Parental nightmare!!!!!
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Old 12-01-2011, 12:32 PM   #4504
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.

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Great granularity on that analysis.
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Old 02-17-2012, 06:52 PM   #4505
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Re: Advice?

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One of my nieces is a high school sophomore. She's a little high-strung -- trust me, she comes by it honestly -- but otherwise seems like a totally normal kid. She's witty, a fast talker (it seems they all are at that age), and empathetic. Her parents are both pretty successful in their fields and can both be a little retentive, but their home life is comfortable and at the high-end range of functioning. She lives on the East Coast so we don't see her all the time, but when she talks about problems it seems like normal teen girl trauma -- school, bitchy friends, and more school.

So here's the thing -- we just found out that they're thinking of putting her on Xanax. Her mom says that some of her friends are already on it, and it has improved their outlook a great deal.

I'm outraged. Of course, I don't have complete insight into her day-to-day, but with the information that I know and putting it into the preexisting narrative of What I Think Is Wrong With America, this seems completely wrong to me.

I appreciate that there are real things called mood disorders and that some people need medication in order to do chemically what their brain cannot do organically. I get that. Depression and anxiety are real things.

But so is being a teenager. Let's assume that there's something going on here where she's struggling more than I've been led to know. Still, I'm gobsmacked that someone would even consider taking a teenager and attempting to treat symptoms without knowing whether she has a permanent condition that requires medication. Call me silly, but I thought these drugs were supposed to be prescribed when other approaches to a particular pathology had failed. I've go no objections at all to adults taking these drugs, because I trust that they would only do so as adults, figuring out that they needed to get past whatever was blocking their uptake of life's happiness. But a fucking teenager? If my kids are frustrated, anxious and unhappy at age 15 that's how I'll know they're growing up correctly. I didn't realize that adolescence, even in its extreme pathological form, was a condition requiring medication.

Am I being too, pardon the phrase, prescriptive here? Am I old-fashioned to think that pharmaceutical mood alteration is pretty serious stuff, and that even if she experiences a positive outcome there's still moral risk here?
So, 3+ years later, I thought I would give an update on this one.

The past three years have been a waking nightmare for the family. Niece was on Xanax, then something else, then nothing, then Xanax again -- if she was really taking it, we're not sure. She stopped going to high school in the early part of sophomore year -- said the whole school experience made her too anxious to function. Section 504 meetings were held; SST meetings were held; psychologists were consulted, the whole shootin' match. And still Niece would not go to school. What she preferred to do was stay in her room and IM with friends and/or strangers all day and night, subsisting on microwaved cheese pizza and a burning hatred for her parents, particularly her mother (the parent of the two with relatively more backbone on discipline efforts). Items were thrown in rage/disgust. We learned that it is possible to throw a Blackberry at a car windshield with sufficient force to crack the windshield but leave the Blackberry unscathed. We learned about acute psychiatric hospitalizations, and we learned about Borderline Personality Disorder, particularly the hard fact that it is probably not an organic mental illness, but rather often the product of stressful maturational events, or the consequence of too-porous boundaries that occur when parents do not consistently mirror a child's emotions back to them, or at least acknowledge they have recognized the child's emotion as genuine. We learned that civil commitment in her state of residence is a tricky thing. We learned that affluent areas often have a hidden subculture of aimless young twentysomethings and that it is possible for a 16 year old girl to find and join them, if she is precocious. We learned the differences among suicidal ideation, suicidal gesture, and suicide attempt, and we saw at least two of the above -- more, depending on how seriously you regard cutting. We heard a beloved therapist friend advise us that we shouldn't be too hopeful or get too close, because people with BPD have a terrible prognosis and when they self-destruct -- literally -- their extreme narcissism often gives them an entitlement to influct special damage on others as they go. We learned the phrase "emotional lability." We learned that it is possible, indeed even easy, for a manipulative teen to break her parents down into a formless, hopeless jelly, and that if a fortysomething woman with a mentally ill daughter says it will never get better and that we should all stop saying it will, there are zero good arguments to the contrary. We learned that you can drop out of high school and get your GED with relative little effort, if you're smart. We learned that many of the opportunities for adding direction to a young person's life are made difficult if you have some involuntary hospitalizations in your history.

And we learned that even though the idea of her moving out into an apartment at 18 is terrifying, it's more scary to think she won't. And it got a little better. A very little better. At least if she's having a dark moment, she's not dragging her mother into it, directly at least. She keeps changing jobs, but keeps getting them, at least. She talks about college, but carefully makes sure that her classes won't be anxiety-producing, which bodes ill for anything resembling adulthood.

I don't know that I can say it started with a bad decision, or any decision at all for that matter. All I know is that some people I love have been through hell, and that it was at the hands of another person I love. Part of my hope that it will continue to improve is selfish. I hope someday I can look at my Niece and not be furious with her for taking adolescence to such a horrifying extreme, at the expense of her entire family, including her younger sister.

Well, that felt good to revisit a time when I hoped it might turn out okay. Please take special care not to refer to any of this on Facebook, or I will delete your ass with extreme prejudice.
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:38 AM   #4506
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Re: Advice?

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AG's niece update
I'm sorry to read this -- it sucks.

On the other hand, reading it makes me feel somewhat better about the latest bad decision made by my stupid nephew and his even more stupid (and very young) wife. Although they live paycheck to paycheck and are always complaining about how they have no money and although his wife is only 20 years old, she has wanted a baby almost since they married 2 years ago and her equally stupid parents have been pressuring her to give them a grandchild because her brother won't let them see his child.

A baby is the last thing they need but a baby is what they will have come September.
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:42 PM   #4507
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Re: Advice?

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I'm sorry to read this -- it sucks.

On the other hand, reading it makes me feel somewhat better about the latest bad decision made by my stupid nephew and his even more stupid (and very young) wife. Although they live paycheck to paycheck and are always complaining about how they have no money and although his wife is only 20 years old, she has wanted a baby almost since they married 2 years ago and her equally stupid parents have been pressuring her to give them a grandchild because her brother won't let them see his child.

A baby is the last thing they need but a baby is what they will have come September.
If Rick Santorum is president they will be designated breeders for the coop.
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Old 02-21-2012, 12:42 AM   #4508
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Re: Advice?

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If Rick Santorum is president they will be designated breeders for the coop.
Even Santorum wouldn't want them to reproduce.
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Old 02-21-2012, 06:20 AM   #4509
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Re: Advice?

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Even Santorum wouldn't want them to reproduce.
You are, apparently, very unaware how life is in the patch. Paycheck to paycheck (as opposed to hunting rabbits and mice) is not a deterrent to having children.

Who do you think is voting for this guy?
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Old 03-02-2012, 05:03 PM   #4510
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.

Facing some hard facts about bedtime books.
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Old 08-21-2012, 08:06 PM   #4511
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.

Am thinking about getting L'il Ty a mobile phone, but I am a long, long way from giving him unfettered access to his own iPhone. Does anyone know anything about the different mobile phones made for kids with limited features/parental controls/parental features?
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Old 08-22-2012, 03:40 PM   #4512
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.

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Am thinking about getting L'il Ty a mobile phone, but I am a long, long way from giving him unfettered access to his own iPhone. Does anyone know anything about the different mobile phones made for kids with limited features/parental controls/parental features?
I'd say get one of those burner phones/prepaid phones that don't have any features except voice.
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Old 08-22-2012, 06:27 PM   #4513
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.

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Am thinking about getting L'il Ty a mobile phone, but I am a long, long way from giving him unfettered access to his own iPhone. Does anyone know anything about the different mobile phones made for kids with limited features/parental controls/parental features?
Best Buy. They will have options from all the major carriers. I forget how old Li'l Ty is, but the Wonk Monster got a phone at 10 that had our number pre-programmed with a special call button, and it allowed parents to pre-select and enter a limited number of contacts from whom calls could be received and to whom calls could be made. If he's older than that, I would agree with the basic burner (or monthly, no-contract) model.
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Old 08-22-2012, 07:12 PM   #4514
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.

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Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop View Post
Am thinking about getting L'il Ty a mobile phone, but I am a long, long way from giving him unfettered access to his own iPhone. Does anyone know anything about the different mobile phones made for kids with limited features/parental controls/parental features?
I don't know what you and the kid do for a living but I'm rewatching The Wire and modern drug crews have realized that cells are too easy to tap.
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Old 08-22-2012, 07:13 PM   #4515
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Re: General discussion - Mom and Dad Esq.

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I'd say get one of those burner phones/prepaid phones that don't have any features except voice.
translation: I represent phone companies.
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