hi all, A serious post, hopefully i may get some guidance and as its not in the naafi bar no daft posts about what i should do about the problem. (i've gone thru them already thanks lads!) i have an 8 yr old step son, he was diagnosed with ADHD at 6 yrs old and is taking medication (concerta) this has improved his levels of concentration and reduces him doing silly and immature things to a certain level. He does better at school now as a result although they still have concerns about his general behaviour. i met him and his mum when he had just turned 5 (within a week) and prior to him being diagnosed. He was a nightmare, his bio father was not on the scene and my partner was struggling to control him, he was violent, very badly behaved and generally not a nice boy to be around. i observed this for perhaps 10-12 months and had my own ideas of what to do, my partner was doing her best, she was trying to make up for her ex not being around and this lad wanted for nothing, he had a good life besides bio dad disappearing. after a time i suggested that firmer discipline was needed, violence from a 5 yr old boy was intolerable and my partner allowed me to get involved, to cut a long story short, the violence was stopped and general behaviour was improved by a firmer hand (not physical) and removal of treats and a reward chart system introduced. behaviour over the next couple of years has been better (it was a nightmare) but its nowhere near good enough, having to be constantly reminded over the simplest tasks, behaviour is just on the limit, not quite bad enough to result in severe reprimand but always teetering on the edge of what's required. chance after chance and compromise from our side always. as he has got older, ive come to realise that generally there is no real improvement and no real indication that he is growing up, and taking on that little extra responsibility, ie well your 8 now, you can take your plate to the sink, you can pop your dirty clothes in the wash basket etc etc, simple things but part of growing up. he starting seeing his bio dad in January, a good thing in my book, (i get a bloody break 2 weekends a month) he is pleased about this and i totally agree he should have access to his real dad, his real dad is on side about his behaviour, he has had problems also already and finds his behaviour unacceptable too, basically we seem to sing from the same song sheet. If, he has had treats removed, ie playstation, nintendo DS, TV time he can be well behaved for a week or more as he is working towards getting them back, as soon as its normal service resumed and he has access to all he wants he goes back to his old ways and will do stupid things and misbehave big style. This to me says he know damn well how to behave and it cannot be totally blamed on the ADHD, in my mind he is very calculated, very intelligent young man and knows how to work the system (his mother). As a result me and his mum are usually at loggerheads, her saying i should accept he will never be really well behaved due to his illness and me saying well he can do it when he wants something. To me he is very selfish and its all about him. We have now had a baby who is 16 months who he adores and gets along well with, over the last 3 months with no apparent trigger his behaviour has taken a drastic downturn, drawing pictures with people cut up and stab wounds and blood etc saying enter his bedroom and you will die, he stole and hid 2 kitchen knives in his room yesterday which i found as i knew they were missing and this morning he attempted to set fire to the curtains in the front room as we slept. this now has obviously made me fear for the general safety in the house and my young daughter, his father has collected him today and taken him to his for a few days at my request. The doctors have been informed, and a mental health team are seeing him Monday AM. When he is off the concerta, he is a loon, running around like an idiot and doing silly things, a definite sign of ADHD, i can accept that, these things are happening with the meds in place, and i proved that the behaviour is not all ADHD related as there was an improvement prior to meds and ADHD being diagnosed when i enforced harsher discipline when he was 5/6. Before anyone asks, he is not physically punished, i don't think you should have to smack your children to get the desired effect, but i am not soft and do not tolerate bad behaviour and punishment is given where necessary. I'm at a loss to be honest, if any proffessionals can help or anyone who has had similar problems could advise I'd appreciate it. i apologise for the long post.