On January 2, I wrote a post about blended family struggles and my boyfriend’s son being heavily medicated on antipsychotics and stimulants… without his knowledge… for over two years. I am SO happy to report a very positive update.
As soon as Dane learned of the medications, he started attending the “behavioral specialist” appointments with his son Bradley, and his ex-wife Dina. Dina fought hard to keep Bradley maxed out on his meds, 0.75mg Risperdal and 54mg Concerta. During every appointment, Dane continued to explain how Bradley has never acted in the manner described in Bradley’s chart by his mother. Finally, with hints of a law suit, the Nurse Practitioner agreed to try decreasing the Concerta to 36mg in March, but Dina insisted on keeping the Risperdal at 0.75mg. Bradley is now 9 and 65 pounds soaking wet.
In March, while I was visiting the farm, we were out in the barn when the Nurse Practitioner called. She asked if Dane would like a second opinion and was willing to write a referral to another physician. Dane jumped at the opportunity, and Bradley was referred to the psychiatry department of a very large children’s hospital over an hour away.
Dina set up the appointment and refused several times to tell Dane when the appointment was scheduled. Dane received the appointment time and date quickly after contacting Dina’s attorney. Dane then had difficulty getting the psychiatry department to give him the same paperwork sent to Dina containing questions about Bradley’s behavior.
While I was at the farm for vacation a few weeks ago, Dane, Grant, Kristy and I made a trip to hand deliver a copy of Dane’s divorce decree stating he has joint legal custody, and therefore, access to Bradley’s medical information and the right to have input in his care. This children’s hospital was unlike anything I have ever seen. It wasn’t a hospital, it was a city. Dane was quickly handed the necessary paperwork after the receptionist made copies of his decree.
Today was the appointment.
Dane’s mom and grandma attended with him, for moral support and to witness to Bradley’s behavior. From 400 miles away, all I could do was wait. His grandmother and I wrote letters (about Bradley’s behavior) which were mailed in with the completed paperwork early last week.
Dane called me as soon as the appointment was over. Two psychiatrists met with Bradley, then with each parent individually. The appointment was scheduled for four hours, but only took two. At the end, there was a general meeting with everyone. The lead psychiatrist gave his recommendation then.
The psychiatrist stated he did not feel Bradley needed the Risperdal AT ALL and questioned his dosage of Concerta, hinting they would only know how he would do in school if he was taken off completely. During Dane’s individual interview, the psychiatrist confirmed Dane’s fears…that Bradley was on high dosages for his size. Bradley’s “behavioral specialists” have always argued to the contrary and strongly defended their position of Bradley being on very low dosages.
Dina quickly jumped in at the end of the meeting, saying she was “completely on board” for taking Bradley off the Risperdal and wanted to know if the doctor just wanted her to stop giving it immediately. Dane said he about gagged. The doctor recommended they meet with Bradley’s “behavioral specialists” for proper weaning.
Dane is so happy he didn’t just give in again when met with wall after wall of resistance. His gut told him to keep pushing since the day we found the pill bottle in Bradley’s coat last December, and he is so glad he did. Dina will always be like Ted, trying everything she can to take Bradley out of Dane’s life. If hurting us means the kids are hurt as collateral damage, then so be it… in their sick minds. I really feel today marks a big milestone for Dane and his continued effort to fight for what is right for Bradley.