Violence and Developmental Disabilities

Discussion in 'Parenting' started by Frieden, Apr 6, 2007.

  1. Frieden

    Frieden Senior Member

    Ok, first off I'de just like to say I'm not a parent but this is concerning my 26 year old cousin, whom my mom has guardianship over because of her developmental disabilities. Sorry if this is long but I'm in urgent need of alternatives


    My cousin ,April, along with her sister, grew up 1/2 their life living with my mom and I. The other 1/2 of her life she lived in a rather shakey environment. Her dad committed suicide when she was about 18 years old. He wasn't a large part of her life but when they were together he was in constant pain and used meds to hide from it. I believe in his part of the family, substance abuse ran rampant. April's mom, although hasn't been officially diagnosed, I believe suffers from some sort of mental disability. She also has a bad past with drugs, cocaine and prescribed pills. She wasn't much of a mother figure and has more then once tried to commit suicide in front of her kids. I only mention this because the company that takes care of her and my mom are seriously thinking about putting her on psychotropic drugs for her sometimes violent behavior, and she too threatens to kill herself when she throws tantrums. I'm looking for natural alternatives for April right now. In fact, I am in dier need of some.

    April's living situation now is this: April recently moved into a new house with two other girls. She previously was living with only 1 of the girls in a different house and things were going great. April needs a lot of attention and I believe this new roommate is causing some issues. The company that works for her is nothign short of greedy and that is why they added another roommate to the mix. For the most part though, she gets along well with her roommates. She usually has 2 staff members on during the evening when she isn't at work or volunteering and 1 live in that is there at night. One staff member does not get along with April at all. They constantly are bickering with each other, which shouldn't be happening because April employs this lady.

    Anyways, April has a history of violence. When she gets upset, she gets phsyically violent. She is a very strong girl and she doesn't realize her strength. Also, she has on 2 occassions pulled a knife on two different people. One was about 12 years ago and she cut her mom's arm. The second incident was just a couple months ago when she pulled a butter knife out of her staff member but did not go through with cutting her. Recently, she had another tantrum. She got violent with her staff memebers. She got upset because a staff memeber told her she had to wait until 10pm for another staff member to help her write in her journal, and that threw April off her schedule, which she has been acclimated to since being with this company. The next morning she got violent again, but worse. The cops were called...it was mostly just a scare tactic. She was pulled of the house and came home for a couple days.

    She then had a meeting with her staff, the company owners, the house director, and my mom and April's mom. Towards the end when April knew my mom was going to be leaving the meeting, she started getting violent and throwing things at people. My mom left, and told them she was going to wait in the parking lot for 15 mintues just in case April wouldn't calm down and told them to call her if things worsen. Well, they got worse and they didn't notify my mom.

    Anyways, April isn't happy where she is at, and although her violent tantrums usually are only occasionally, they look like they are heading down a path to no return. I'm worried that they are going to drug her up so badly that I am going to lose my cousin. She has a family past of addiction, and lets face it, psychoactive drugs are addictive. Also, there are many risk involved. It's not like April is ever going to be "cured". Currently, she is on a birth control for mood swings. I asked my mom about possibly taking her off bc and see if anything improves.

    Anybody have any suggestions about more natural remedies to help keep April's violent rages on the down low? My mom told me if I found anything she would rather try other options then drugs. I, more then likely, will be her guardian within the next 30 years and I want what's best for April now, because I hate to see her not even human like once she's been on these drugs for that many years.

    I am completely open for ideas and suggestions. Currently, April is living pretty well off, so money isn't a HUGE issue for her. I was thinking about bringing April to a Yoga class or a meditation class, but I'm not sure if these things would be effective with somebody with developmental disabilities?
     

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