According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry , usually children with ODD can be openly hostile and are very often uncooperative, This is really what makes them stand out above their peers. The difficult, defiant and often revengeful behavior is the norm and it seems to be holding back their development. It is this which starts the alarm bells ringing and many teachers and parents then seek a proper diagnosis.
The diagnosis can take along time and very often a second opinion is needed. It can also take a long time and we are talking here about a possible diagnosis time of up to a few days as all the questionnaires have to be gone through. It is always wise to seek out the opinions of the people closely associated with the child.
It is fascinating to note that many parents have confirmed the fact that their ODD children were very difficult to comfort as babies. That started a sort of vicious circle where parents felt inadequate but they also started on a mindset in which they expect their child to be unresponsive and the child perceives the disapproval and negativity which just makes things worse. The child inevitably feels frustrated and unloved.
Very often these children with ODD are very slow in getting things done and they start opposing everything from an early age so that toilet training and bedtime routines are all battleground areas. It is also interesting to observe that they are treated as if they were deaf but the actual problem is rarely deafness. It is rather a refusal to hear when they are spoken to.
Parenting training is absolutely essential in dealing with children with ODD. This will make or break the relationships within the family so we cannot underestimate it at all.
Another feature is that fact that the se kids will never or rarely accept responsibility for their actions and they will blame others for everything. They are always ready for a confrontation and they will frequently complain that everyone is against them. They see every task or duty as a battle to be won and this often makes it almost impossible to parent them As regards medication, there is little hope here too as this will merely mask the symptoms although they can and do help to keep the lid on the situation.
Many parents learn to pick their battles because otherwise life would become unbearable. There is also the question of timeouts because these are usually ineffective, according to some parents. They say that the time is used to plot revenge and that is hardly effective either. Parenting strategies are the key to dealing with children with ODD but it is no easy task!