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Attention Deficit Disorder.... maybe....

Friday, October 12, 2012

Hello all! Thought I would post on this to see if anyone has input of their own experiences to share. Thank you Jayma for sharing your info with me before I even asked!! emoticon

So here he is, my 6 year old son, Ryan (will be 7 in 4 months):


I told him I wanted to take a picture in the shirt/tie I chose for school pictures, and he hopped up to lay on the bed and decided to pose for GQ! emoticon

We had a conference with his teacher yesterday afternoon, and she is stating that he isn't
"attending". It took me a few minutes to connect this with "Attention Deficit Disorder". Just say it lady! emoticon Anyway, he is a mover- wiggly, she calls it. And he doesn't finish the in-class assignments- doodles on his eraser instead. And when she teaches, he draws pictures. She also seems to think his drawings are very basic (as compared to the lovely "other child's" drawing she showed us). And he's writing in all capital letters for the most part. And when it's time to follow instructions, he doesn't know what they are or has to look at his peers' papers to see what to do (as he hasn't been paying attention to know himself). Easily distracted- someone gets up, the wind blows something, there's a noise... and he's off task.

Was that the laundry list? I believe so. She suggested we talk to his doctor and begin the process of assessments- her filling out forms, us filling out forms.... to lead to where? He is beyond the 1st grade reading level- by miles. He probably can read better than some adults. His math skills are also high. He's not missing the boat on anything there. (And being a would-be high school math teacher myself, I throw some things out there they haven't even touched on yet in 1st grade. And he gets them!) He writes well enough for a 1st grader, in my opinion. He can write in complete sentences. When I reminded him to write in lower case, he did. His spacing between words has improved. His handwriting is average- no worse than some, not as good as others.

It may be easy for me to state the obvious- "Is he just bored?" Well, yes, he is. Quite frankly, from what he is bringing home for homework... I AM BORED. Color the triangles red, color the rectangles blue, then put the # of each in a box. Simple math equations, all = or less than the sum of 10. There is no challenge here. Sequences- fill in the missing numbers. 1 _ _ 4 5 _ 7_ _ 10. Nothing tricky, nothing to think about. All can be done in about 2 minutes.

This child wants to know how things work. He wants to figure out why he can't fly. We had to pull the lid off the toilet - years ago- to show him how that works. He decided he could blow up balloons faster by using his father's air compressor in the garage. (father was present) emoticon He wants to know where all the drains go. I think he needs a kids' engineering school. If he found this stuff more interesting, would his attention be better? I don't know.

But I do know this- I'm not ready at 6 years old for assessments. Assessments that will not provide him with additional help for academic learning, as I can't believe they would give a child who ISN'T struggling academically, some kind of tutor or aide, right? (This is my assumption.) I'm thinking they want him to sit down and do the worksheets. And that he needs drugs to do this. After my own personal experience last year, I am really against drugging my child.

Now that's not to say there may be some "natural" help out there that I am willing to explore. I've talked with my Mom (a former 30+ year Natural Foods and vitamins store owner) and we have found a supplement for "active kids" to try, as well as some night time sleep help. Ryan obviously has a very active mind, even while sleeping- he yells out sentences of stuff in the middle of the night while asleep- usually upset that someone is taking something away from him. The little mind doesn't rest.... and that does worry me. So I do think it's time to get a little more serious about better rest.

I have chosen a beginning path (my mantra... "Begin anywhere.") and I will go from there, to see how things develop. For now, I asked the teacher to send home any incomplete assignments from the day, so we could finish up after school. Ryan has been made aware of this new arrangement, and hopefully that alone will help him "want" to get it done during the day a little more. I also suggested he see if he can be the first to finish assignments in class. He never thought of that! We'll see how it goes....

My son is quite a challenge. He IS different than most children I've ever known. But his potential is great, I can sense that. If he truly was focused all the time- how much could he accomplish? Probably more than his current teacher has to offer at this time! Am I holding him back by NOT trying medications, or doing the right thing by shielding him from potential side effects of drugs? Choices.... for now, I am following instinct. emoticon
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SERAPHIM_DREAM 10/28/2012 1:00PM

    Go with your Mom instincts!! You have a wonderful bright probably even brilliant son! What an awesome smile! My son used to doodle in his notebook.. he would make pop out ships so when the teacher checked his notebook there were 3d illustrations from what he learned but the teacher put red marks all over his wonderful creations and told him to stay in the lines write neatly and "this is not what this notebook is for!" yikes crush my childs self esteem and creative and put him in a box! NOT!!! Listen to your Mom heart.. you know your boy.. they learn as they draw, they still listen as they design their eraser.. what is important to the teacher isn't important to your son.. that is why he needs to check to see what to do.. while the teacher was given instruction about something that is not important to him.. he is inventing and creating things that are important.. and he knows he can check to see what is to be done in just a few seconds and give her what she wants.. he doesn't need to use his awesome creative mind to listen while she is talking and talking and talking .. I dont' know I just know that's how I think and how my son thinks.. I am terrible at sitting still but I dont' think its because I have ADD.. I think it is because what the person is saying isn't always important to me.. and I do have things to accomplish that are.. I will still try to give them what they want and I feel like I can catch up and give them what they want and still use time to invent and create.. my son's hero is einstein and he has notebooks full of his own drawings and inventions! I'm not saying drugs aren't for anyone.. I really don't know.. I do know I have seen the affects of those drugs .. I have studied them.. the ones I have studied and talked to emt's about slow the mind down.. one emt told me he took some just to see the affects on his mind and it felt like being in a bowl of jello.. my children are at a different school now.. they dont' have to "fit in a box" to comply with what the children wants.. the school we are at has multiage classrooms also so my first graders can study some things at Kindergarten level or 3rd grade level just depending on where they are .. the awesome part is they dont' feel judgement from peers or teacher because there are all at different levels and they excel at some subjects and other subjects they are able to learn at a more basic level.. hope this helps! Sounds like you are a wonderful Mom!

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WEBEZE 10/27/2012 11:59PM

    I struggled with the same concerns with my son when he was 6. He could read the alphabet at age 2 and navigate a computer by age 3. His 1st day of 1st grade he came home and said so sadly. "We are doing the alphabet again" He pushed the teachers buttons everyday because he was bored. When he was in 8th grade we had an assessment done and found out he has aspbergers (can't remember the spelling. Math was always my better subject). A mild form of autism. Over the years he has struggled greatly fitting in with his peers. He thinks outside of the box, because he doesn't see the box. Teachers have always commented that he doesn't give them the pat answers they expect. His ideas are what the other kids don't even consider yet once he explains them the other kids like them. I feel he is going to be a great leader one day once he conquers his social skills. His high school as been wonderful and he is finally making friends. This year he is a senior and I am so looking forward to graduation even more than him.
Your son sounds wonderfully bright and will shine more than you can even imagine. It is thinkers like him that will lead our world in the future.

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LAHUDSONCHEF 10/27/2012 11:12PM

    In grade school, my teachers were fabulous. I was bored stiff and always finished all my schoolwork AND homework in each subject before most of the kids completed just the schoolwork. I read very quickly, and devoured library books, 5-10/week, in addition to my work. My teachers could see this, and back then, were free to work with individual kids as needed. All levels were in one class, except for "Special Ed".

I think the teachers gave each other tips as I moved up the school. I was always being sent on errands to the office, or to another teacher, or to the library to look up difficult words (like antidisestablishmentarianism in 4th grade), or search for just the right book for an upcoming lesson, etc. In other words, they got me OUT of the classroom, made me use my body (pent up energy that would otherwise be used in fidgeting and distracting the other kids), and often gave me tasks that would use my brain (have always loved libraries since then). Plus, I was developing relationships with adults throughout the school, learning to talk to them as well as to other kids. I see all of this as a plus for me, and that they were very wise.

These days, I think it's beyond hard for teachers to do this for their students. The I.E.P. others have mentioned would be a good move, but I'd check to see if that's a possibility without going the route of ADHD evaluation (as that has many negatives including pressure to medicate). I had an I.E.P. done at age 10, which tested me into the Gifted and Talented program. My mom chose to hold off on putting me in that until high school, but once in it, what it did for me was give me other things to do with my time than just sitting in a classroom being bored. I learned computers when our school of 2400 students had only 2 (even the office didn't have one). I was taken out of each of my other classes once a week (but expected to keep up with all the work), to work with the GT teachers who were handling each of us individually on various types of projects. Through GT, I did college level literature & writing courses in 11th & 12th grades (& got college credit), and was exposed to a smaller classroom/interactive way of learning that I'd have never gotten if left in the larger, generic classes.

All that being said, who knows best how your son learns and what HIS passions are? You and your son do. Have you ever considered homeschooling? I'd never suggest that it's easy (it most definitely is not easy), but for those who do it, it's incredibly rewarding. Not only do you work with your son in a way that suits his learning style and pace, but your family studies & learns together. A trip to the grocery is a math & budgeting class. Going to the park to play frisbee becomes a lesson in physics, as well as Phys. Ed. Cooking & baking is Home Ec., Math, Social Studies, Science. Hunting is Biology and Engineering (guns, crossbows, how do they work?). Vacations are instant History (what happened here in 1893?, etc.), Geography (maps, capitols, etc.), Science (geology, flora/fauna, weather, etc.), Math (mileage, distance, speed, etc.) and Writing lessons ("Our Trip to Kalamazoo"), etc. Etc.

I could go on and on. And this type of learning would allow your son to have plenty of time to expend all the energy his little body is wriggling with now, stuck behind a desk for 6-8 hours a day. It's a little extreme, but I've heard of folks who let their boys do math standing on their heads, because the body has to work so hard to stay in that position that their minds can be more focused than when they are bursting with repressed energy. Or, after every 20-30 min lesson/worksheet, they send them outside to race each other around the house a couple times, so when they come back in, they can sit still for another half hour or so and concentrate on the next lesson. Or, recite the times tables while doing jumping jacks... Etc.

One friend's daughter struggled with the basics of reading until she was nearly 9 years old...her brain couldn't wrap around it, but she otherwise was a very bright, very artistic, and very verbal kid who could do her maths just fine, and had listening comprehension down too (that's how they accomplished much of the rest of her lessons). When written words finally "clicked" for her, she developed a voracious appetite for reading. Now you'll rarely see her without a book when she's got some free time. If she'd been in school, she'd have been labeled learning disabled or some such, and she may never have been given the chance for it all to "click" in its own time. She's got a sister, who at the age of 9 has a reading vocabulary to shame many college students. Very different kids, and allowed to be so. :)

Not to mention, it won't take all day. My friends' kids who are homeschooled spend usually 3-4 hours/day total on all their lessons (depending on age, 6-9 subjects), are often ahead of the "average" kid their age, and are each pursuing things they really enjoy and are passionate about, and want to incorporate into their futures, and some beginning to make money at these passions and pursuits. One family encourages this angle in a way that has redirected some of the study of the one in high school and the one about to enter high school...taking more business math & accounting, business management, web development, etc. This would never have happened, and the time to devote to such things wouldn't have been there, if they had to leave at 6:30am for the bus and not get home til 4pm, with a couple hours of homework once they get home, all to stay "average".

Can you tell I'm a fan of homeschooling? But, whatever route you choose, I agree with the idea of advocating for your child. You need to push for what works best for HIM, not for his teacher. I do like the idea someone gave of considering having him tutored to see if he can push up a grade level or two, to work more at his own capacity. He sounds like a bright young man who needs and can handle being pushed and challenged. Keep him bored in a classroom of kids who work slower than him, and he'll be the class clown, the goof-off who hates school, and may begin to hate learning itself. But, give him a goal, a project, a pursuit, and he'll probably shine and develop the disciplines necessary to see his projects through to completion. He is the dreamer, the thinker, the do-er...he'll end up being the entrepreneur, the job-creator, the leader of whatever group he joins. I know a couple men who started just like him. :-)

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FANGFACEKITTY 10/27/2012 7:04AM

    My son was diagnosed ADHD in 1st grade. We suspected in Kindergarten but it's really hard to take seriously a teacher whose biggest concern about your son is that he won't color like the other kids. So what, he always hated coloring. But by 1st grade he was falling behind academically because he couldn't remain focused enough to learn what he needed to do at school. And a big part of the focus and wiggliness and non-attentiveness was, quite simply, he was bored out of his mind.

Like your son, mine was (is) highly intelligent and ahead of his peers. Coloring boxes was basically an insult his intelligence. But the schools don't care mostly. They cater to the 80% average - students who learn the same way, about the same intelligence, basically they norm. The schools do not want to be bothered with the other 20% of children who fall outside the school's definition of normal and average, in either direction.

The choice to medicate is a personal one, I believe there are good points and bad points no matter which decision you make. However you choose know that your son is special BECAUSE he is not joe-average-schoolkid. ADHD kids DO tend to be highly intelligent creative outside the box thinkers. They learn best when they are allowed to learn that way; forcing them to try to be the round peg in the round hole like the 80% majority is just not going to work.

The benefit in getting the diagnosis is then, legally, the school has no choice but to work with you and your son to come up with an Individualized Education Plan on how best to teach him as an individual. The school will most likely NOT want to do this as it demands time and resources from them but as his parents you have the ability to force the issue and legally they must comply. Otherwise, without the diagnosis, as the years go on he will be branded as a "troublemaker", as "not worth the effort", etc. by many of the teachers and he won't get the education he deserves (as another poster noted he will end up ignored because it's easier to let him be in class when you have 30+ other kids to deal with who are doing what they are "supposed" to do).

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FITNFUNJEN 10/27/2012 4:14AM

    It sounds to me like you are being very thoughtful about this and making good decisions for your son. He's lucky to have you for his mom!

Personally, I don't think most 6 year old boys do well in a classroom setting where they are expected to sit still. They are energetic and curious and want to be engaged in hands-on learning.

Here is my experience with ADHD. My two younger brothers both were diagnosed with ADHD. They were very difficult boys and very different from other children. My parents never put them on medication, but they did have them do biofeedback. Today my brothers are both college graduates and successful in business. The older one has an MBA from a prestigious university and runs a very successful business. He's married and has two kids with one more on the way. The younger one is engaged to be married soon and has a successful career. Even if a child has ADHD, it is possible for them to grow up successfully without medication. I'm sure my son would be considered ADHD, but I haven't had him diagnosed and he's successful in his schooling and his life. Since we homeschool, I can individualize things for him and he can move around as much as he needs to. He's almost 12 and he can sit still for long periods of time (like at church) even though he prefers to be moving and active. He's just like his daddy. I have also had lots of boy students (in a classroom setting) with ADHD most of them not medicated. It's more difficult for me as a teacher because I have to constantly re-direct them and remind them to sit down or be quiet or whatever. But they have been very successful in my classes including doing quality difficult work. So I wouldn't recommend medication just to make a teacher's class easier. I'd find a different teacher, class, or school. I would only recommend looking at medication if the ADHD is really causing a problem in your son's life affecting his success and his relationships.

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NIMAWEYGH 10/21/2012 12:32AM

    We have a ton to talk about because of my nephew Connar and all of this same stuff happening to him when he was very young. Want to cover all the bases of what my SIL went through and what she did and how wonderful Connar has turned out to be. About to finish his broad casting degree in Mena and already on the radio there as *the voice of the Bearcats*..................so will call you tomorrow Seven. LYG

All of the advise is just spot on above and I know you will do exactly the right thing for Ryan because you love him the most. And he is such a cutie pie........I love his GQ pose. emoticon

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1MIN17SECB412PM 10/18/2012 1:04PM

    He NEEDS to be tested for *G*I*F*T*E*D*

A.N.D... even if he fails their little tests... he's gifted (imo). You can *see* it in his eyes!!

If nothing else... he needs to be tutored to skip a grade or two.

Comment edited on: 10/18/2012 1:10:09 PM

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FITNHEALTHYKAL 10/16/2012 5:08AM

    You have been given A LOT of insightful and veteran advice sweetie. I've walked this road with my own son and one thing I remember saying to a teacher who was particularly frustrated with him is "If YOU are frustrated with his 'busyness' just think how HE feels being in his body 24/7" My point being he knew he frustrated people and didn't fit into the mold. He knew that the teacher had nearly 30 kids to teach to and that it was easier to let him do his own thing because he was busy - fidgety - wiggly depending on which teacher it was. One wonderful teacher actually let him get up and walk around and use whichever desk he landed at (and the other children as well if the mood struck them) and that was a huge blessing. She let him pick things up and look at them and touch them. THIS is how he learned. He has spent a lifetime learning that he is a different learner and finding alternate learning methods to the "norm" because he has ADHD which is a very real thing. The neurotransmitters in his brain don't shoot right most simply. To be diagnosed (at age five after a teacher said it was like he had packed his bags and left town 15 minutes after arriving in class), he had to have a two year gap between ability and achievement. These kids are smarter - often brilliant. Life becomes more and more difficult when you realize you don't fit in. Social problems become more prevalent. You TRY to change because you WANT to fit in. It breaks a mom's heart to see it Seven. Steven is now a chef. I'll never forget when he was a senior and came to me saying he hoped I wasn't going to be upset or ashamed that he wasn't going to "real" college. He LOVES what he's doing and THAT is what Mama's want for our children. Just this week he called me worried and asking Mom for help in organizing for a BIG job interview. Life doesn't get easier....I know you have A sh*t ton of info, I just had to share another perspective.

Love you Island Sister

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TJCADDO 10/15/2012 11:20PM

    He is probably bored out his mind. Doing the same thing over and over day in and day out. He gets it already.

I am thinking that great movie with Uncle Buck.

So the teacher doesn't get him. You do! He is only 6. Of course he wiggles and day dreams.

Just keep teaching him at home and he will be fine. Sometimes you have to do what a teacher is too lazy to do.

And he is beautiful!

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JENS_DOIN_IT 10/15/2012 4:20PM

    emoticon I'm not familiar with ADD or ADHD.. ....But I have worked with lots of children over the years. In a classroom setting with so many children in a class, it is almost impossible to teach in a way for each child to benefit. ALL children learn in different ways and at this point, it sounds like the teacher maybe teaching to a certain child, and chances are, he is NOT the only one who is not doing the things the way she feels it needs to be done. I can only imagine how tough this is for you! Love you chica!!

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GOODGETNBETR 10/14/2012 6:46PM

    School can be a tough place for future movers-and-shakers and creative types. I don't think pills should be the go to remedy for these types but rather instruction that speaks to their talents. emoticon with the evaluations and all the fan mail from next month's GQ ;)

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MIPCY1 10/13/2012 2:09PM

    Your son sounds a lot like me when I was in elementary. I couldn't focus in class, but I was a great student. I had teachers who were willing to work with me to help me stay on task and finish my work. I learned how to deal with it as a kid, and it has definitely helped me to understand why I couldn't focus well and what to do when I can't focus now. I'm finding that better nutrition does help me now, but all that work has dramatically helped me in my studies in grad school. My mom also took me to all the hands on museums she could find when I was little and gave me all sorts of puzzles to play with at home. I hope you all get things worked out.

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VINOTEA 10/12/2012 10:48PM

    Hubby Says:

Ryan sounds a lot like me at a young age. Go with your instinct for now on this one. 6 is definately too young to diagnose ADHD. It's impossible to rule out environment, personality, natural youthful energy, and yes just plain boredom so soon. He does show certain symptoms, but he may never need meds if you change his environment now and he learns to deal with them as he grows up- or he may not have it at all, and may only be acting out.

Regarding ADHD, don't trust what his teachers or the family doctor say. As someone else said, they don't have the experience to truly tell. Special Ed teachers may have more insight, and will probably tell you it's too early to tell and see a professional anyway. So if it gets to that stage, don't rely on anything less then a diagnosis from a child psychologist with ADHD experience. The drugs have no long-term effects, but there are side effects like headaches and grumpiness at night when it wears off.

That said, everything he's doing in class can be explained by boredom. Drawing in class is more interesting then whatever the teacher is doing, rather obviously. When I was a kid, my parents arranged with the teacher to let me draw- I actually paid attention better when I had this simple distraction to occupy my restless energy. This was in 5th-6th grade though. Writing in all caps seems like a simple lack of respect for the teacher's authority, which could be caused by the boredom. I don't believe any kids drawing can be fairly called simple, either. Brains that young don't act like ours do, so don't think that something simple to you is simple to them. Since he's so spacially/systems oriented in his inquisitiveness, it's possible he's going for some arrangement of shapes or pattern geometry instead of some classical picture or coloring. This would just be normal for the way he processes the world.

Depending on how far out of the class curriculum he is, it may be appropriate to home school. Either the curriculum simply won't move at his pace, or the classroom environment will be too restrictive for him to explore and learn as he wants. If so, the consequence of keeping him there will be to stifle his learning and put him at extreme risk for teenage depression due to the frustration and lack of stimulation. I can say from firsthand experience, these can possibly be long term effects he will never recover from. His grades and behavior in school now are NOT what's important this early on. Figure out what he needs, and how to get it. Your intuition as a parent will go a long way here; it will tell you where to start and how well what you are trying works. If you do start looking at homeschool, your district should have a guided home or tutoring program. Be aware that there are a lot of fishy homeschool ideas out there; there's some good ones too, but start inside the system and see what the district has to offer.

Lastly, don't neglect the nutritional options. Complex carbs and lean protein, low fat diet (potatoes, especially whole grains) make a huge difference. Cheese is a good protein option because of the tryptophan in it. These foods help encourage neurotransmitter production, such as serotonin, in addition to eliminating the spikes and crashes that come with sugar. The book "The Chemistry of Joy" has a good workup of how these things work in the first 3rd of it or so- it's geared toward depression, but it's nutritional guides work as a general cognitive boost for concentration problems as well.

Pass on this advice in your travels (there's far too much misinformatio nabout adhd out there), and good luck with it all!

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KRZYKAT3 10/12/2012 10:10PM

    ah! I get to speak my piece thank you for asking. Remember the days when every day schools had different classes for children who learned at different levels?

I belive getting rid of those has opened the door to diagnose perfectly healthy BORED childeren as ADHD. I could be called ADHD, not sue why I was not pulled out of class for this. Instead, whend I finished all my classroom chores early, the teacher was ALWAYS ready with other tasks to keep me engaged.

I am not a fan of this ADHD at all. There may be children who have issues but not near as many as are being diagnosed. seems like we constantly have the disease of the year.

Like strep. how can one family have strep throat from October to march when tehy all get it at once??? let me knpw if you have an aswer? Still trying to figure thsi one out.

Does RYan lose interest at home? Sounds to me like Mom and Dad KNOW he can learn and loves it, probably due to your own love of learning. Teachers have a tough job trying to teach A-F studenst all in one class. Let's go back to teaching to childrens level instead of "well how com emy child isn't in that class?"

emoticon I feel for you tring to fight the system. hope his teacher let's YOU make the decision.

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DEBBY4576 10/12/2012 4:28PM

    My girlfriend's son has ADD or ADHD, and she took him off all processed foods, sugar and complex carbs. He quit being so wiggly in class, and was more attentive. He stayed on that diet thru high school.

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ASPENHUGGER 10/12/2012 2:08PM

    I'm ADD, not diagnosed until I was in my 60s emoticon & struggled all my life with the consequences of marching to a different drummer. Most AD/HD folks are very bright, but unfocused & unstructured. I cannot even begin to ennumerate all the ways my life has been derailed from not knowing that I am ADD & not having any of the tools to cope with it! The worst of all was trying to raise my children without having a clue about how to be normal, nor how to teach them the skills they needed to succeed in this world. Undiagnosed AD/HD people generally can look back over their lives & see a pattern of nothing working right: bright but unsuccessful in school, or a career; lack of social skills, failed relationships, etc.

Imho, you should have your son evaluated by a professional who specializes in AD/HD. A regular doctor generally doesn't have the knowledge to understand the condition. AD/HD is NOT a one-size-fits-all condition, & it takes a trained professional to be able to give a competent, accurate evaluation. I was fortunate to find a life coach who is also a Nurse Practitioner & very knowledgeable about AD/HD and the various medications. Her name is Laurie Dupar & you can contact her at www.coachingforadhd.com. Life coaches can work with you long distance, or she could recommend someone closer to you who works with AD/HD kids.

Once you have an accurate assessment, you can start to work on whether or not medication might help, & if so, which one, if he is AD/HD. Again imho, but I think your son would greatly benefit from having some help understanding himself -- it might not be very bad now, but the further he goes in school, the more his untreated condition will distance him from his peers and make him feel isolated and different. AD/HD kids are given additional help, if they need it -- I'm not real familiar with this aspect, but I know that if it's needed, Ryan could get accommodations to help him be successful.

Of course I can't make a diagnosis, but he sure sounds like an AD/HD kid. He also sounds like he needs to be in a GATE (gifted & talented) program, to be challenged intellectually.

Lastly, I encourage you to research AD/HD. I was absolutely amazed at the various aspects of it, the different comorbidities that often accompany it, the multitude of ways it shows up. I also learned that it's not the bugaboo I used to think it was -- it's not mental illness, it's just different brain wiring. There are a variety of books on the subject, and countless sites on the Internet. Hopefully after studying the subject a bit, you will no longer think getting Ryan an assessment is a bad thing. After all, if he had asthma, you would want to know exactly what his condition was, and how to treat it so he could live a productive life, wouldn't you?

Sorry to have written a book here -- as you can see, I'm pretty passionate about this subject. If I was ever going to become a crusader, it probably would be about getting kids assessed early on in life, to save them the grief & heartache of struggling to succeed & not understanding why all their efforts don't work.

Good luck with this! It's not an easy place to be nor an easy decision to make.

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BLH507 10/12/2012 1:38PM

    Stick with your instinct! My son (very bright, way above average reader, on read encyclopedias, science and history books) was diagnosed at 10 with ADHD. He took low dose Ritalin, only at school, and did very well. He stopped taking Ritalin in High School. He was a B average student. Could he have been and A student, yes definitely. But B's were ok with us not to have him on meds. My daughter was diagnosed at age 5. Meds never worked for her. She was diagnosed with depression and sleep deprivation at 7. We attended more to the sleep and she improved a little. It was just never easy for her and still isn't. My son is 30, veteran now in college and on the Dean's list. My daughter is 26 and a successful CMT, single Mom and still has trouble sleeping. I don't think she was ever ADHD. I think she has some learning disabilities and possibly bipolar but for now she is doing ok. It is a hard road and I don't envy you. Read everything you can and advocate for your child. I tried to get them to hold my daughter back in 2nd grade and they didn't get her testing done in time. She went on to 3rd and they wanted to move her back in November after she had been in school 3 months! I said no. They kept talking about how she would fit in because she was so small. So many times I finally told them I felt she was being discriminated against because of her size! I wish they had the state sponsored online home schooling then. It would have been perfect for her. Sorry to write a book!!
He is adorable by the way!

Comment edited on: 10/12/2012 1:38:52 PM

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