Prozac for a 3 year-old?

This is my youngest. Mister T.

Check that one raised eyebrow. He gets that from me.

He’s an awesome kid. Loves cars. Is inquisitive. Whip-smart. Active and coordinated. Everyone he meets on the playground is his “best friend.”

He also feels things differently than other kids. He has really high highs, really low lows, is defiant and obstinate and physically strong, which you find out quick if he hauls off and punches you for no apparent reason. He’s by turns suspicious, trusting, pessimistic and exuberant.

I promise, he has more shirts than just this orange one.

He’s my third kid, so it’s not my first time at the rodeo. I’m realizing early, though, that T’s a little different than our other two (as he should be!), but talking with his pediatrician at his yearly checkup, we agreed maybe he should talk to someone good with very young kids about coping strategies and how to handle emotions in better ways. Also, if there’s something deeper going on, better to learn now than before he gets kicked out of Kindergarten for giving the teacher a bloody lip. (He doesn’t hit other kids his age, only bigger ones and grown-ups, and if he has a “good” reason.)

My first clue it wasn’t going to be that easy should have been when the referral office lady called and asked in a very snotty tone, “You’re aware they don’t medicate 3 year-olds, right?” I corrected her and explained the coping strategies, emotions, there’s gotta be a better way thing. Second clue might have been when the doctor’s office called and said the same thing as the snotty referral office lady, in the same judgmental tone. Again, the tune changed after I gave my now stock explanation of what we were after.

The face of skepticism.

I’m not familiar with counselors, but I was told this guy was great with kids. We walk in, T starts telling him about our trip to the car museum this past weekend, and how some bad kids were riding the pedal cars in the pedal car museum, even though the sign said NO, and then Doc simply watches in fascination as T acquaints himself with the room. “That’s a brain!” he exclaims, pointing at a poster. “I’ve got one of those in my skull! Because skulls are on top of your skeleton, inside your head.” The doctor is impressed. Then the doctor tells me he’s never seen a kid so young in his office and I start to get confused. This is the doc so good with young children? We go through medical history, T’s, mine and my husbands.

The conclusion? Prozac. “How would you feel about putting your 3 year-old on Prozac? Just a little bit. Like, a quarter of a milligram. Just to see what would happen.” Doc’s words. Like, hey, this might be a cool experiment.

I give him pretty much a big, fat, fuck no. I’m not anti-medication. I’m on a couple, trying to work out what’s going on with my wacky brain-chemicals which have suddenly decided I should have fairly sudden-onset near-constant anxiety and now maybe panic attacks at random intervals, among other things. Husband is on meds, too, and has had amazing success with issues he’s struggled with his entire life.

Nope. Not going to experiment with this guy.

But to experiment with Prozac on a 3 year-old? Doc tells me, you know I’m a psychiatrist, right? I say, if that’s the one that prescribes medications, then, no, I didn’t know that. You are not the guy we were supposed to see. But now, he’s intrigued by T. He wants T to come back in a couple months. He thinks T has really early signs of ADD/ADHD, which don’t usually show up until first grade. Dad has those, too, plus dyslexia, so it wouldn’t be a surprise. He tells me to make an appointment on my way out.

I didn’t.

I don’t normally blog on super-personal things like this, but is this normal? I know we’re a society that relies more and more on medications to fix things, and hell, sometimes we really need them, and it’s likely that T will at some point. But this just seemed so weird to me. No recommendation to talk to a psychologist. You know, the kind of doc we were supposed to see in the first place. We were only at his office because of a clerical error, apparently. No advice on coping strategies. Nothing on handling all those big emotions and anger at people bigger than you.

What do you think? Is this messed up, or am I just over-mom-reacting? And if you have a toddler on an anti-depressant – I’M NOT JUDGING. I’m just wondering if this is now a common first resort.

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The Internet Ate Yesterday’s Post

See? I told you it was evil!

I had this whole post about how I got some new anxiety meds and maybe they’re working, lots of new ideas kicking around, being all productive and stuff…

I did okay on last week’s goals. Visited a few ROW80ers, didn’t consume quite as much internet, wrote some words. But I’m changing format, after some crazy developments this week:

Finish rough draft of PL&M by August 31.  

Post ROW80 Wednesday updates and visit 10 other ROW80ers.

Work out initial anthology details by Sunday.

Outline short story by Sunday (30K words).

Plan out cookbook project next steps. 

I know, there’s some weird left-field stuff in there. How are you doing on your goals? Do you participate with ROW80? Want to? Join us here!

The internet is evil. Eeeeevil.

Goals. I has them. I has updates, too, but nothing impressive, because the internet.

Last week’s goals:

Write daily.

Visit 10 other ROW80-ers.

I bombed on the write daily goal, only getting one out of seven days. I did, however, visit 10 ROW80-ers. And spent a disgusting amount of time scrolling Facebook, terrifying myself with videos about how Washington state is overdue for a massive earthquake and tsunami (I have family there, so that really helped my anxiety issues), and getting mad about the general tendency of people to be meaner and stupider online.

So, new goals:

Limit my non-writing, non-blogging internet consumption to less than 45 minutes per day.

Write 1 hour daily.

Visit 10 other ROW80’ers.

How are you doing on your goals? Do you participate with ROW80? Want to? Join us here!

X-ing

That’s right. I’m X-ing things off my to-do list today:

Quick blog post? X-ed.

Put gas in the car and air in the tires? X-ed.

Work hard on actual day job workity-work-work-work stuff? X-ed.

Get a big fat certified check and virtually empty my bank account? X-ed.

Wrangle anxiety down to a level where I can get really excited to be a homeowner again? X-ed.

Happy Tuesday, all. I hope your day is fantastic. heart

Babysteps

So, babysteps. If you read my post from a couple weeks ago, you might know I’ve been dealing with some issues relating to anxiety and depression and just plain being overwhelmed. That post was pretty upbeat and positive (no, don’t go away, this post is too, I promise!), but unfortunately, the medication I was seeing such great results on also caused WW3 in my guts. Wait, stop running! I promise I’m not going into detail on that, either!

Anyway, where that leaves me is back at square one: no meds to help me but I do have a definite advantage. I know I’ve actually got an issue with anxiety and depression now (for those that missed this stunning revelation I had: Suzy Sunshine types can get anxious and depressed, too!) and that automatically puts me way ahead of where I was before. Since I’m opting out of more meds until my tummy heals up, I’m going to employ some of those coping mechanisms I talked about before. And that’s where babysteps come in. Continue reading