Even if I had been through this with someone other than myself, it wouldn't matter to you because individuals react to medication very differently. What works splendidly for one person can ruin another's life. Our brains are extremely variable, we metabolize medications differently, and our levels of illness are different. Our motivation for getting better differs. I think your concern about medication is appropriate -- none of them were ever tested or approved for children (this is mostly because testing drugs on children is generally prohibited) and because children's brains are not yet fully formed. Doctors are allowed to use them, however, because once a drug is approved for any purpose, doctors are allowed to use them for any other purpose unless specifically proscribed. Now, abilify is an antidepressant -- it was approved only when every other antidepressant had already been tried and failed to work. It is most often used in conjunction with an antidepressant that is working but not well enough. If your daughter is psychotic, we have no treatments for this other than drugs -- therapy doesn't treat this, though it can make the person better able to function while on medication. Nobody here can make this diagnosis for you. I also would say having a Dad murdered might have a much larger impact than you give it credit for. Kids that young especially have a hard time processing that information. So you have to follow a practical course here. The first thing I'd do is get a thorough work-up with the best doctor you can find -- it could be lots of things, including nutrient deficiencies, autism, hormonal problems, blood sugar problems, thyroid problems, hidden viruses, a host of things that are not easy to find and that the average doctor does not look for or know how to find. After that, I'd get a second opinion from the best psychiatrist you can get referred to see. If the diagnosis comes out as psychosis, I don't know what alternative you have to medication. If it doesn't, you do.
Great response above. I know from adult experience that risperodol, the smallest dose, has been very helpful for me. Hearing voices, hallucinations and delusions all went away. I pray your daughter finds relief soon.
Medicine right away! Don't let it get worse! The medicine will not destroy her.