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Re: Parent of 8 year old ADD / ADHD child

Re: Parent of 8 year old ADD / ADHD child2012-02-02T00:56:34+00:00

The Forums Forums For The Non-ADD Pillow Talk Parent of 8 year old ADD / ADHD child Re: Parent of 8 year old ADD / ADHD child


Post count: 363

Don’t worry about the meds. They are very safe. But are they working? I’m not hearing you say you see a difference in your daughter’s behavior. With my son, who got diagnosed at age 5, we noticed an immediate, dramatic difference. He calmed down and became clear and much more focused. I think you should see a difference – if not, you might want to talk to your child’s doctor about trying a different medication.

My son has unfortunately gotten the message that ADHD is “bad” and that he is somehow bad for having it. I’m not sure why, since I have it, too, and the only way I think it’s bad is if you don’t know you have it and don’t get treated for it. We have many struggles over school attendance and homework assignments. He is a moody, emotionally volatile kid, and extremely hard on himself, plus socially pretty isolated. He is now 12, and it’s hard for me to make him do anything – if he doesn’t buy into a solution, I can’t force him to, so I have a hard time with that. He learned to read late – in about the third grade. Now in 7th, he’s an excellent writer and story teller. He also has a flair for the dramatic. He’s a high-level abstract thinker, not so into the cliques kids form at this age.

When I was that age I was more the shy, withdrawn type, extremely sensitive to noise and light, easily over-stimulated by social activity, crowds, and visual clutter (like a lot of stuff lying around produces mental noise). This was at a time when being “shy” had a stigma attached to it, so I got the message that there was something wrong with me because of that. I’ve always had a hard time relating to other people, can’t understand what interests them about the things they like to talk about. Prefer my own company, writing, making art, or if social, prefer to see friends one-on-one. But everyone’s ADHD is different.

Most people have problems with procrastination, not being able to prioritize, not being able to block out what’s going on around them so they can focus on one thing, poor short-term memory, forgetting and losing things, being clumsy and accident-prone, being high-strung emotionally and not being able to keep their mouths shut when it would be prudent to do so, a hard time transitioning from one activity to another, waffling between inertia and obsessive activity.

It helps to have an external structure – for people like me who are visual, if I don’t see something, it doesn’t exist, so I need calendars on the walls, pictures of things to remember, a designated home for my stuff, and ear plugs so other people’s conversations in the house don’t irritate me.

Feeling chronically over-stimulated is a real problem. I can be extremely irritable because so much going on around me causes stress. When I look back on my childhood I think of all the times I had melt-downs and people were screaming at me because I couldn’t calm down – they were making it worse by expecting me to be outgoing and to participate when I was just exhausted. Tuning people out became a defense mechanism in part because they never had anything nice to say and also everything going on around me was just too much information to process at once.

Having ADHD is like having a very poor filter for sorting incoming information – it all carries more or less the same weight unless something truly crazy is going on.

Hope this helps.