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Old 05-12-08, 02:38 AM   #1
The Black
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Anybody here with (some) psychological expertise?

I have a little brother in law, 13 years old, from whom I've just learnt has been inflicting self harm upon himself.
I have only once seen such behaviour that occured when he had a argument with his dad, namely that he hit himself hard in the chest a couple of times. Though I was shocked a bit at first, it only occured once that I had seen myself, so it didn't register with me to be honest.
Since yesterday I have learnt that he sometimes gets into a mood that he despises every activity he would normally like. You could normally give him a football and he could keep himself busy for hours on end, but he will suddenly develop a mood where he doesn't feel like doing anything that he would normally like.
During such moods I've come to learn that he scratches his inner leg hard with a pen, and hits himself hard with his fist too (as I've only seen once).

Now the reason that I'm worried is because I don't think the parents act accordingly. Some more background will reveal why I believe so.
He's had behaviour-problems ever since I've known him. All day long he chants like a soccer hooligan out loud (clapping and yelling), teases his older sister (to his grand pleasure) to the point of where she wants to harm him, and does the same to his mother. He verbally abuses his mother and sister (bitch not being his choice of word, whore would be his main choice), and he has more energy than I would call normal. He talks like a "gangster/rapper" all day as well, but I would believe that to be a phase. Granted him being a kid, I still think if diagnosed, he would come up as having ADD. But the parents choose not to bother doing so. Also maybe important to note that he has been extremely selfconcious about his looks for a few years already, which I really can't quite understand would already develop at such a young age(?).

I was wondering if anybody had dealt with such issues, and if anybody could maybe (loosely) diagnose what psychological issue we might be dealing with here?

Last edited by The Black; 05-12-08 at 02:45 AM.
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Old 05-12-08, 08:29 AM   #2
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I don't think anyone here can properly diagnose someone based on a few descriptions on an internet forum. What I can say is that if this has been done with any regularity, the kid needs help.
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Old 05-12-08, 09:20 AM   #3
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Sounds a little bit like autism...
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Old 05-12-08, 10:43 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bus
I don't think anyone here can properly diagnose someone based on a few descriptions on an internet forum. What I can say is that if this has been done with any regularity, the kid needs help.
Well the reason I posted here is because I know it will remain anonymous.
I was wondering if anybody, given the symptons I described, could point out what might be wrong, as it's obvious there is something incredibly wrong.

I wouldn't think of autism, he's as impulsive as they come. And has no rituals or compulsive behaviour. He just does those things, whenever it comes to him.
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Old 05-12-08, 10:49 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bus
I don't think anyone here can properly diagnose someone based on a few descriptions on an internet forum.
And it'd be completely unethical for anyone in the profession to do so.

The best/only advice I can give is to go see a licensed professional who can better assess, diagnose, and treat him. Being 13, I'd strongly consider going to a specialist whom works in that age group, as there will probably be some developmental issues to consider, etc. If he is a threat to himself or others, there are things that can be done more immediately to start the process.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:18 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by pedagogue
And it'd be completely unethical for anyone in the profession to do so.

The best/only advice I can give is to go see a licensed professional who can better assess, diagnose, and treat him. Being 13, I'd strongly consider going to a specialist whom works in that age group, as there will probably be some developmental issues to consider, etc. If he is a threat to himself or others, there are things that can be done more immediately to start the process.

Believe me, if I had control over the situation I would do that right away. But as an outsider I have no control, and as I stated I don't think the parents are acting accordingly.
If there's somebody in such a profession that could point me in the right way as to what it could be, maybe with Wikipedia and such I could convince the parents to then take action (with a licensed professional as you proposed).
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Old 05-12-08, 11:22 AM   #7
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Look into WedMD maybe. I can almost guarantee that any correct diagnosis here will be by chance, and not because of the information you're giving. I'm sure that a proper diagnosis for a psychological problem is something that can't be done over the internet without even talking to the party directly, but rather someone two degrees removed.

Concentrate not on what his problem is but rather on getting him help. That really is much more important. Get him in front of a person who can help him.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andicus
Sounds a little bit like autism...
Exactly what I was going to say.

Hmm, so I should think of something else.

How about...Autism! The Musical!
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Old 05-12-08, 11:35 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Black
Believe me, if I had control over the situation I would do that right away. But as an outsider I have no control, and as I stated I don't think the parents are acting accordingly.
This is tricky because it involves a minor and they are the guardians. Outside of getting an agency involved for the safety of the child (if he is a threat to himself or others and/or if you feel they are being neglectful), you really wouldn't have a leg to stand on in regard to forcing services.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:38 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Black
I wouldn't think of autism, he's as impulsive as they come. And has no rituals or compulsive behaviour. He just does those things, whenever it comes to him.
I was thinking this based on the shouting and clapping all day being a possible sign of hyperactivity, as well as unusual social behaviour.

Another thing that comes to mind is Turrette's Syndrome, based on his verbal outbursts. Does he have any tics?

Other than that, I agree with the others... This should really involve a professional.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:48 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andicus
I was thinking this based on the shouting and clapping all day being a possible sign of hyperactivity
Maybe he just likes gospel music.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:53 AM   #12
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He should also see a physician to rule out medical conditions, as many of the symptoms listed could have an organic implication/origin. There are WAY too many other factors to go Zebra Hunting (looking for low incidence Dx's like Tourettes).
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Old 05-12-08, 11:54 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Bus
I don't think anyone here can properly diagnose someone based on a few descriptions on an internet forum.
I can.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:54 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pedagogue
And it'd be completely unethical for anyone in the profession to do so.
Is not.
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Old 05-12-08, 11:55 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pedagogue
He should also see a physician to rule out medical conditions, as many of the symptoms listed could have an organic implication/origin.
Should not.
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Old 05-12-08, 12:09 PM   #16
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Don't you have something to shoot?

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Old 05-12-08, 12:23 PM   #17
The Black
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andicus
I was thinking this based on the shouting and clapping all day being a possible sign of hyperactivity, as well as unusual social behaviour.

Another thing that comes to mind is Turrette's Syndrome, based on his verbal outbursts. Does he have any tics?

Other than that, I agree with the others... This should really involve a professional.

Hyperactivity, it's possible. However the main focuse that I'm trying to get to is the self harm.
It's not tourette's, he won't chant in the classroom, or comparable situations, and he doesn't have any compulsive tics.

I agree with EVERYONE here that he needs to see a professional, but I need some sort of way to convince these parents that just sort of turn a blind eye to the situation.
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Old 05-12-08, 07:03 PM   #18
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I suppose, since he is a minor, you could call Child Protective Services, and report that he is not getting medical care he needs.

And, he does need something.
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Old 05-12-08, 08:36 PM   #19
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If he's your brother in law, doesn't that mean you're married to his sister? If not, I would still recommend talking to the people you know who are closer to the situation. Maybe they have already taken him to the doctors.

You seem to be related to the boy by marriage, so I would recommend trying to get people you know to talk to the parents about getting the boy evaluated. I wouldn't approach the parents myself unless you had a very close relationship with them, or no one else was willing to do it (or told you a good reason not to, like the parents are already getting him treatment.)
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Old 05-12-08, 08:51 PM   #20
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Sounds to me like a punk-ass kid that likes attention and gets it through being loud, obnoxious and violent. Since everyone around him lets him get away with it, why should he stop? He's posturing to be the alpha male, and winning. Someone in the family needs to stand up to him and knock him down a few pegs.
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Old 05-12-08, 09:00 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mrs. Danger
I suppose, since he is a minor, you could call Child Protective Services, and report that he is not getting medical care he needs.

And, he does need something.
This is what I was thinking also. If the kid is physically harming himself and the parents are doing nothing (to your knowledge) about it, then someone else needs to - and it sounds like you've elected yourself. I recommend having a talk with the parents about your concerns first - to rule out if they've been negligent, or are doing something and you're simply not "in the loop" (amazingly, not all families discuss their issues with everyone). If, after the talk, you determine that negligence is happening, then make it your responsibility to inform whatever authorities you have in the Netherlands. Put the welfare of the child before your feelings of offending the parents. A kid having a tantrum is one thing, but inducing actual harm is not a matter to be ignored. Good luck to you and the kid.
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Old 05-12-08, 09:13 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pedagogue
And it'd be completely unethical for anyone in the profession to do so.

See! This is exactly what Tom Cruise was talking about! He just needs to get his Thetans straightened out, and Tom would have been brave enough to offer his diagnosis over the net, not hiding like some snake-oil salesman behind "ethic" and "professionalism".
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Old 05-12-08, 09:14 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Black
I have a little brother in law, 13 years old, from whom I've just learnt has been inflicting self harm upon himself.
I have only once seen such behaviour that occured when he had a argument with his dad, namely that he hit himself hard in the chest a couple of times. Though I was shocked a bit at first, it only occured once that I had seen myself, so it didn't register with me to be honest.
Since yesterday I have learnt that he sometimes gets into a mood that he despises every activity he would normally like. You could normally give him a football and he could keep himself busy for hours on end, but he will suddenly develop a mood where he doesn't feel like doing anything that he would normally like.
During such moods I've come to learn that he scratches his inner leg hard with a pen, and hits himself hard with his fist too (as I've only seen once).

Now the reason that I'm worried is because I don't think the parents act accordingly. Some more background will reveal why I believe so.
He's had behaviour-problems ever since I've known him. All day long he chants like a soccer hooligan out loud (clapping and yelling), teases his older sister (to his grand pleasure) to the point of where she wants to harm him, and does the same to his mother. He verbally abuses his mother and sister (bitch not being his choice of word, whore would be his main choice), and he has more energy than I would call normal. He talks like a "gangster/rapper" all day as well, but I would believe that to be a phase. Granted him being a kid, I still think if diagnosed, he would come up as having ADD. But the parents choose not to bother doing so. Also maybe important to note that he has been extremely selfconcious about his looks for a few years already, which I really can't quite understand would already develop at such a young age(?).

I was wondering if anybody had dealt with such issues, and if anybody could maybe (loosely) diagnose what psychological issue we might be dealing with here?
Oregonians would LOVE this kid so they could label him autistic, thereby jacking him up on prescriptions and naturopathic chants.

But they would be stupid and highly retarded.

The real diagnosis? As others have stated, he wants attention. He craves it. He lives off the high. It's also mixed with a desire to see the reactions on people when he "Shocks and Awes" them.

Being at school, he's probably trying to be noticed as well, and since he doesn't particulary have (or want) to use his intellect, his resorting to primal ways of getting attention and respect.

Seeing a professional won't help at this point. He needs reinforcement from family and hopefully friends. It's apparent he's getting away with this behavior, because he's continually doing it. He will only continue what he feels is being observed. At 13, there's no point in being a Freak-Ass if nobody is around to see you doing it.

This kid reminds me of my little brother. He eventually grew out of it, but his friends certainly helped him along in the dumbass stage, like your brother in law. I can see a lot of similarities here.

Btw, the reason he hit himself in the chest hard, is because he acted out hitting his father. If he hit his father...I suspect he would be in trouble--not to mention you didn't mention him teasing his father...but just about everyone else, right? So, think about that one. Father isn't teased. There's a reason. He respects that authority, but no one else.

And as an aside if I had a kid calling my wife whore and teasing my daughter to the point of utter frustration, I'd drop kick him on my back porch to the end of the fence so fast he'd wish he had autism to see the kick ahead of time.
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Old 05-12-08, 09:32 PM   #24
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I have much to add to this thread. But because I believe in hell, I will refrain.
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Old 05-12-08, 09:46 PM   #25
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