Psychiatry & Psychology--General/10 year old threats


Hello, I am a step mother of a 10 year old boy. I've been his only mother figure since he was 5. About once a week I get angry, violent, threats from him stating that he will kill us. I've tried all different types of parenting styles with him, and nothing is working. We went to a psychologist for a while and that didn't help either. I can't afford a psychiatrist but I can't keep living in fear. What should I do? His dad has just about had it as well. We try sitting down with him and talking to him, we've tried disciplinary actions such as time out, grounding, etc. But his anger never stops. Today he threatened to kill me and my daughter because she threw a toy at his face on accident. Then he proceeded to punch her. I don't know what to do anymore. I'm at the point where I want to take him to the ER or even call the police. I have to keep my door locked at night when I sleep because of his threats. Please help.

The police won't do anything, but you may want to take him to the ER. This clearly needs ongoing psychiatric care.  If you cannot afford such, try calling your local mental health association or family service agency to see if there is a low-cost clinic in the area.  

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Daniel S. Harrop, M.D.


Dr. Daniel S. Harrop received his B.A. and his M.D., both from Brown, and his M.B.A. from the Edinburgh Business School, Scotland. Board-certified in adult and geriatric psychiatry, he is a past president of the R.I. Psychiatric Society and a member of the Committee on Medical Quality of the American Psychiatric Association and the Committee on Continuing Medical Education of the R.I Medical Society. He serves as a consultant to four of the top five major medical management companies, including OptumHealth/United Healthcare, Magellan Behavioral Health Services, ValueOptions and APS Healthcare, and maintains a private practice in Providence, R.I. He also serves as chief psychiatric consultant on the Medical Advisory Board at the R.I. Workers Compensation Court. He was formerly on the faculty at the medical schools at both Brown University and Harvard University.

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