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ADHD: Please, no.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Soo. It's time to get my daughter evaluated for the dreaded A word.


I've been waiting for it, but protests from my husband have really kept me from pushing too hard for it, even though last fall my 6 year old's Kindergarten teacher pushed for it.

But now, things are different. This is first grade. Things are serious, things get graded, and so far, she's getting evaluated at very low reading rates (she's an excellent reader) having difficulty even following directions, and just plain paying attention.

I don't want her to have ADHD. But unlike my husband, I'm willing to accept it if it happens. He thinks it's an "imaginary" issue. He actually said those words today. "Imaginary disease." Which pisses me off, because I KNOW ADULTS who suffer from this. And it's not a damn disease.

He bitches because his niece was diagnosed, but he hasn't sat and talked to his sister about the issues she has. The girl has a very difficult time... which is what will happen to my daughter if she falls behind now because of inattentiveness. I do believe that ADHD isn't actually an abnormality, rather, it's a different way of processing the world, but unfortunately, those who have it just don't fit in as well with modern processes... that doesn't mean they don't have a problem.

Do I want her on drugs? No. What parent does? But the fact of the matter is, while I will do whatever it takes to keep from going down that path, if it happens, it happens. I will tell the doctor I want that to be the last resort, but frankly, I'll do what I have to. Hubby's ego aside, I don't care what I want, or what he wants for our daughter. I want more than anything else for her to succeed, and live up to the sparkling potential I see every day. The baby who learned all her letters, by SIGHT and SOUND, by 22 months, will NOT be below average anything if I can help it.

So I've made the decision. I made the call and left a message to see if the referral paperwork we got last year is still good, or if I need a new one.

And if I have to fight an uphill battle with my husband over the "imaginary" problem that's had us in so many conferences in the past 2 1/2 years? So be it.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    You are using caution wisely, and I'm sure you will make the right decision, along with the professionals. Hang in there!
    2005 days ago
    My younger brother and I both suffered form learning challenges. We came from a small town where no testing and no special ed was available. We each had to come up with strategies that worked. We both got through university, we each came up with a set of tricks to help us get by.

    In spite of my learning disabilities I test out very high on a standard IQ test and on Creativity tests, some of you may have noted that my creativity still apply to my spelling and grammar. This still drives Gramie a bit crazy, but it does not bother me much.

    I suspect I would have been designated ADHD had they tested me, but I managed and seemed to have worked things out.
    2005 days ago
    Lots of good advice and things for you to consider. As a substitute teacher I run into many types of children. Since I am not always warned of the "special" students that I am about to run into, I am sometimes unpleasantly trying to keep a class, student or students under control, instead of teaching them information. This is not always due to student with ADHD, some of them are my best students, they just need much more stimulus to keep them busy. My biggest problems have been with the behavioral problem students. Whether they have ADHD along with it or not, it can be very frustrating for a teacher that is just trying to get information to the students.

    So go ahead with testings and such, but look into all the alternatives and get second opinions. I have had some parents that used biorhythm treatment on their children to avoid meds. I worry too many of our children are on meds that sometimes just delays true cures to the problems. However, if they truly need them, then it may be what is needed to help them focus and to stay out of trouble with tired teachers.

    Whatever you do, make sure you are being a great example for your child, removing anything in your lives that may add to the problem(such as clutter), try to bring more order and organization into their lives, and most of all, be patient understanding and loving. Whether or not they have any mental or physical impairments, our children need to know they are loved more than anything else. My prayers will be with you guys.
    2005 days ago
    You have a lot of advice here - I just hope you get the help you need, and your husband forms his opinion on measured facts, no just casual conversation.
    2005 days ago
    It is most definitely not an imaginary disease. However many children do get wrongly diagnosed with it. I'm sorry that you and your family are going through this... emoticon
    If she does have it, there is a good chance that most of the symptoms, if not all, will go away as she grows up. Most of the people that I know that have ADHD are absolutely brilliant and ended up doing great things. It is an obstacle, but I'm confident that she will pull through and that will only make her stronger.

    Stay strong!
    2006 days ago
    2006 days ago
    I saw a PBS show about ADHD adults - many of them are VERY creative people. They can learn tricks to help keep themselves on track. Hope your daughter blooms emoticon
    2006 days ago
    Heya. Sorry you have to go through this. If you ever need someone to translate teacher speak into plain English just let me know. I know at times we can use technical words that make no sense if you aren't a teacher, and they seem more scary than they need to be! I'm here if you need me!

    I just want to add, you said this "she's getting evaluated at very low reading rates (she's an excellent reader)"

    When you say that she is an excellent reader, do you mean her ability to decode and speak the words or her ability to comprehend and understand the information she reads?
    2006 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/23/2012 6:53:39 PM
    One thing that struck me is you talk about how quickly she learned her letters. Have you considered getting her tested for a gifted and talented program? Children who are not being challenged and are bored can appear as being inattentive. When I was a kid I probably should have been in G/T, but it didn't exist at my tiny school, so the teachers yelled at me and I was bullied instead, thus I just learned to not care about school - I preferred learning on my own. That caused significant challenges when I got into college.

    If she's not G/T and you get her tested for ADHD, before you consider any treatments read current studies and information on the condition. Some people are connecting the use of artificial colors and flavors to ADHD symptoms, so by adjusting their child's diet to whole, natural foods has completely changed how they interact in their environment.

    One last thing to consider: if a person ever takes an ADHD medication - even a single pill - s/he can NEVER be in the military. Even if you don't think your child will ever be interested in the military, this is an example of how the choices you make now will affect her opportunities in the future. Sure, if medication appears to be the best/only option, then you have to go with it. But if there are other options it is worth trying those first.
    2006 days ago
    Better to deal with it early so she doesn't get locked into a pattern of frustration and failure so that she just gives up!

    Good for you, Mom!

    2006 days ago
  • ETHELB150
    You need to go with your gut. Do not let other people tell you any different. My son has asperger's syndrome, and I have been through hell and back. He was first diagnosed with ADHD and it started from there. Early diagnosis is key. These kids with ADHD are bright, funny, and excel in life. If she had diabetes nobody would think twice about her taking medication?

    You are her mother, you know best and that is the truth, You know her better than anyone else. Take good care of yourself, as things get stressful with school, and everyone putting their two cents worth in.

    If you need anything at all let me know. Good Luck and good for you for doing what you think is right.

    2006 days ago
  • DIDO123
    Dragonchilde, I'm sorry you are having to face such a difficult thing. My nephew was diagnosed with ADHD and some related disorders, and it has been a really difficult and long journey for him and his parents to find what works for him. But, he is an INCREDIBLY intelligent child, and when given the right environment, really excels. With the right support, your daughter will be able to blossom and grow in the way she is meant to.

    Your daughter is really lucky to have such a compassionate and dedicated mama.
    2006 days ago
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