Mommy Needs To Vent
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
We have always thought my older son had some sort of hyperactivity problem. His behavior is very good, but he is very impulsive. It is like he doesn't think before he does or says anything. He talks twenty four hours a day, and I know all little boys talk a lot. They should not talk all the time though. So when he started kindergarten we started having problems with him in class. He wasn't really being bad, just disruptive. He will not stop talking, even when the teacher is trying to teach. I believe what she says, because she teaches a class of twenty two students and my son is the only one standing out.
Last November we decided to have him tested. They diagnosed him with having one of three forms of ADHD. He has the Hyperactivity Impulse problem. Testing was done by one of THE BEST psychologists in the DFW area. We didn't just bring him to some crappy clinic. After the testing we had several choices on what to do about what they diagnosed. We could put him in therapy to help him control his impulses or we could go to a psychiatrist and have him on medication. We chose the therapy because I am not thrilled on putting my child on medication.
Meanwhile, in school we were finding out more about him. He is very intelligent, which of course I already knew. He wants to know everything. I had a conference with his teacher a couple of days ago and I have to say I am pretty proud of him. Although he still has problems with talking and getting in trouble. He seems to whiz through his work. For example, his teacher will give him an assignment and he will finish long before any of the other students. So fast that often his teacher will think, "there is no way he could possibly be done." When she looks at it, it is very neat and in detail. He can read long words and write with correct punctuation. The thing is, he flies through his work. If he does that well so quickly, imagine if he only took time with it. It may have something to do with the fact that he is always ready to do something else. I also found out that he is ranked high in his class, or something on those terms. They are going to put him in advanced classes next year, but they will have to take a test the first week of school to see if they belong in there. His teacher thinks he will not have a problem since he is academically so strong for his age. His problem will be with disrupting class. So how in the world can he have ADHD right?
About two weeks ago, his therapist recommended we take him to a psychiatrist and try the meds. She didn't think therapy was doing anything for him and this was the route I didn't want to take. So I started him on them last week, I haven't seen a major difference, but these aren't supposed to control his hyperactivity, it's to control his impulses, so it may not be too visual. The pills are supposed to make him think about things before he does them, or put more thought into what he does.
The reason I am a little upset, is because people are so judgmental. You KNOW who I am talking about! Right?? I am not going to name any names or point out people because this is a public blog. I mean, first off parents have problems with other parents always looking for something wrong with their kids. I don't want anything to be wrong with mine! At the same time I want to help them. Also, people say that ADHD is soooo over diagnosed, but what if your child really does have it? They say it is genetic, so it's pretty possible my boy has it. In my family, I have several family members with it and they had it bad. My husband's brother didn't get diagnosed until he failed out of first grade. I am just fed up with friends and family knowing what is going on and having negative thoughts. They say that he is fine. Maybe he is, so I don't see how this will hurt. Yes. I am confused too. I am just so confused.
Okay, so let me cut it off here...I do have some questions for those with school age children.
Next year in first grade, my son will have a homeroom and start switching classes. Is this NORMAL? I don't remember changing different classes until like sixth grade!
If you have ADHD, do you have problems learning, because he is really smart for his age. SO is it possible this diagnosis could be completely wrong?
Thanks everyone for listening!
First grade is way to soon to change classes. Young children need stability and routine (as do children with ADHD) I would say something to the school. This may not change anything but if enough parents say something it might.
Secondly, ADHD is not a learning disorder. It is exactly what is says - an attention and hyperactivity disorder. Lack of attention may lead to learning problems but not necessarily. Your son probably is a very bright child and with the help of some medication and therapy will go far!
Keep up the wonderful job mom!
Just to let you know, my sister with the son on medication is also very intelligent. As part of the initial testing they discovered that he was able to do maths at a 17 year old level - at age 8 (he's very intelligent all round but apparently his strength is maths).
I have watched my kids like a hawk for signs as my exH's counselor said they had a 30% chance of having it.
I think you are doing the right thing. As long as he doesn't turn into a zombie, the meds are a good thing right now. He can eventually be weaned off as he gets older.
Its the parents who OVER medicate their children that make me mad.
PS: That's crazy to have first graders change classes!!
There is a lot of data as to why boys fall behind in schools -- one reason is we drug them because teachers don't like active boys. There is active anti-male prejudice in the school system, plus schools get extra $$$ when they have ADHD students. Boys and men are built different from girls and women and school systems must realize this and stip drugging boys into being like girls.
Think about this OUTSIDE of the realm of school and kids: If you had a worker who was neat, diligent, smart, loquatious and quick you would promote him. WHY WOULD YOU DRUG A KID OR DIAGNOSE HIM WITH A DISEASE WHEN YOU WOULD LAVISH PRAISE ON AN ADULT WITH THE SAME QUALITIES??
You may also cause your child long-term problems. Please look at what this drugging does to boys. Also consider that you yourself may have some ingranined anti-male prejudice, perhaps instilled in you from Women's Studies courses. The drugging of boys in younger grades is largely the reason boys do not make it to college. Why don't you try taking drugs with the same effect and see how you succeed?
Final thought: Back in 1979 my autns and uncles complained my brother was like your son. He was talkative, active, and moved a mile a minute. He was also frighteningly bright. Their kids, on the other hand were "well behaved." Scroll up to the future: My brother is still always moving at high speed -- as a multi-millionaire CEO. All the "behaved" cousins are slugs that work at used car dealerships and the A&P. They complained about me, too, and I would up at the Washington Post, although compared to my bro I am an abject failure!