We’ve finally agreed to go the anti anxiety medication road with our daughter. The psychiatrist we started taking her to 18 months ago reassured us that anxiety is far worse for her, with the cortisol surging through the body, than anti anxiety meds are. Additionally, too many negative behaviours become cemented and a greater risk of self medication (ie use of alcohol or drugs) can occur when the anxiety becomes too much and coping mechanisms have not been developed.
We postponed it when the psychiatrist first suggested it last year, instead opting to try a few other alternatives such as Melatonin to help our daughter sleep. We hoped that would make her more prepared for the day ahead if she had a proper amount of sleep instead of her usual lying awake til at least 11pm every night. We also changed schools, hoping a less stressful educational approach would ease the pressure she was feeling. But that didn’t work either, so she’s back at her old school again after just one term.
We’ve also tried reducing the days she has to attend school, then we tried making it subject specific where she only had to attend art and history. That seemed to be working at first, but like most changes, she does her best to attend as expected, but within two weeks, begins to crumble and hide from the world again.
Time is ticking by and she’s not actually attending more than about 15% of school. She isn’t interested in homeschooling (and I just know I’d be no good at doing that!!) or distance ed, because she says she doesn’t want to totally bow out and give up. Poor poppet, we forget just how devastating this must be for her and how she must feel like a failure.
Given all this, we felt we couldn’t deny any longer that medication is required to make some positive steps forward. It’s day 7 today for her taking them; she’s experienced occasional nausea and weakness and unfortunately less sleep since being on them. She just started on half a tablet, but tomorrow we increase that to a full tablet. I hope that doesn’t also increase the negative effects she’s had two fold as well!
It apparently takes approximately 5-6 weeks before any possible improvements will show. Thankfully it’s school term holidays at the moment. Only one term left for the year. We don’t even know if she’ll go up a grade since for the second year in a row she has not exactly been attending!
One day at a time.