Fear

Hello all. I am very new to this. My son, whom will be 6 years old next month was diagnosed last year with ADHD. He has been prescribed the medication but out of fear and the cost he hasn't quite started taking it. As other parents, I have read horror stories about others and yes I do know not every child is the same. My fear is in thelong run. I don't want this medicine to harm him in the future, I don't want to lose my son, meaning his personality, wittiness because of the medication. Sometimes, I often question myself as a parent. He attended daycare, pre-k. He was actually pulled out of pre-k by us because they called everyday for someone to pick him up because they couldn't "handle him". Today was his second day of Kindergarten, and for the first time it took a turn. He is never physical, but today he decided to hit the teacher because she wanted him to sit down and do his work along with his classmates. I am so ashamed and embarrassed and even though I have his father, I feel like I am so alone. Im so scared for my child. I just want him to be normal, however you define that word. My focus is him, I just want him to be successful.

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  • Hi Gilesa. My names George. I too fear for my sons future, we are not medicated as he has only just been diagnosed really and I wonder if it's right for us at this time in his very young life. He's only just 8. It's his lack of sleep and attention that we struggle with. I found that talking with other people helped me come to terms with the diagnosis and I'm working to understand his world and learn his way in his world. I just want him to reach his potential and be happy with his life. I hope that being here will help you too as it's helped me.

  • Hi Gilesa,

    Much like you, my son has been recently diagnosed with ADHD, sensory issues, and anxiety. He's five and will turn six in October. I'm not going to tell you what you should or shouldn't do. Ultimately, that's your family's decision. But I will offer you the perspective of the parent who went the medication route. The first thing I would recommend is reading the section on medications in Taking Charge of ADHD. It goes over the pros and cons of different medications for ADHD. It was a really valuable chapter for us. One of the facts that most helped me trust medication is that ADHD has been a diagnosis for fifty years. And stimulants have been used to treat it throughout that period of time. So, there is ample medical evidence out there on some of the ADHD medications.

    When we were evaluating whether or not to go the medication route, the biggest factor for us was my son's comfort in the school setting. It's obvious that being in school is very anxiety inducing for him. He has very big outbursts at school. And we were also called to pick him up every day in preschool. For me, personally, it breaks my heart that he hates going to Kindergarten. So, we went the route of trying to help alleviate some of his anxiety and discomfort. We want him to feel safe. And the medication may help him start to approach that feeling.

    That being said, we are still trying to find the right medication for our son. Guanfacine was a bust for him, but it seems to work for other kids. Lamotrigine has not had any harmful effects. But we don't really see any positive effects either. So, we're back to the drawing board. Part of our difficulty is finding a medication that won't negatively impact our son's weight. His sensory issues also impact his diet, and, as a result, he's underweight. So, we have to be careful about what we use. I think that's why we prefer seeing psychiatrists who are well versed in ADHD medications and the history of their use. I really trust my pediatrician, but I'm not sure how well versed he is on ADHD meds. If I were going to go to my pediatrician for medication, I'd be sure to read up heavily beforehand.

    So, that's my perspective on it. It's a personal choice. Just make sure you research the pros and cons thoroughly--especially for particular TYPES of medications, and if you can, talk to a psychiatrist who specializes in ADHD if you haven't already.

    On a final note, don't feel bad. My son hit his teacher, too, so you have the dubious distinction of belonging to our private club. :) Just remember that if your son could control his outbursts, he would. Just like mine would. I always remember the mantra that this is a disability. And his outbursts are often a reflection of his disability.

  • mine just turned 8 and has really bad outburst threatens to hurt students when he gets up does your child go threw that as well ? what do u do when that happens ?

  • So far, my son has been more dangerous to teachers than to the students. :\ I trust the teachers to handle any disciplinary issues that need to take place, but we talk at home about how hitting and violence are never ever EVER acceptable.

  • Hi. :) Even though both my husband and I have official ADD diagnoses (we are approaching 50,) I was also afraid of not only getting our children diagnosed, but also putting them on medicine. I hope what I have to share helps in some way.

    Our 4th child, a smart, happy, athletic boy with a deep desire to be obedient and well-behaved started seeing his name on the board for inability to listen every single day during 2nd grade. We tried every type of behavior modification tool we could think of to help encourage him to "try harder" to be a good listener. Earning things, taking things away... none of it worked. His teacher would tell us with every email that our son was very remorseful and sad every time he was told he had earned his name on the board.

    It was the summer before he started 3rd grade that I realized that my soft-hearted sweet boy who HATED getting his name on the board may start hardening that soft heart to keep it from being sad about this. I so didn't want that to happen. Because of our diagnoses, the Dr was OK trying him on Vyvanse to see if that helped him. He told me that if he didn't have ADHD it wouldn't work anyway and we would stop. He went to 3rd grade taking this medicine and only had his name on the board or talked out 2 times the entire year. Both times he forgot to take his medicine. He stopped worrying about getting in trouble and started enjoying school more.

    Then I had an epiphany... I know the crazy coping-mechanism hoops I jumped through to make school work for me when ADD was still brand new. Various classes in college were quite a challenge for me with my type of inattentiveness. Did I want my children to have to work so so so hard to get good grades just because I didn't want them medicated? The answer for me, having gone through it, was resounding NO. I didn't want then to hate school, to spend 5 hours doing 2.5 hours of homework (something my Senior daughter did to get straight A's until she was medicated starting her Junior year,) or God forbid cheat to make-up for what they weren't learning.

    At this point, all 4 of our children have official (expensive) diagnoses of ADHD and are medicated. SO glad to have the diagnoses as it changed they way we parent them. Our two boys are 100% opposite learners. One is in the top 1% of visual learners and bottom 3% of auditory learners. Our other is in top 3% auditory learners and bottom 5% visual. Our girls are more balances, but have significant attention issues. They are very driven and both have anxiety that takes over when they aren't on medication.

    For our family, medication has allowed for the intake gaps to be less obvious. Our children learn in a more typical way when on it. Our goal, of course, is to help them to learn the very best ways for them to organize and retain information so they can be as successful in school and in their chosen work environment as possible. They are learning to do that more quickly and efficiently because they can focus more on the tasks at hand.

    Finally, their personalities are just as delightful as they have ever been. As far as that goes, the medication only lessens the spontaneous outbursts that tend to get them in trouble - especially at home. It gives them a chance to think twice before saying something they wish they hadn't - or better yet - to think twice before a spontaneous action that could hurt them.

  • Serial Hello are they on different meds?

    That's ok I see the name. Thanks!

  • Giles

    I would suggest to put him back on the meds! It helps I promise! Don't be embarrassed its part of his situation. Find some multivitamins and not sugar. Get him an IEP and be upfront about his behavior! I would find a Behavior specialist.

    Hope it helps.

  • It is scary to put our children on medicine but remember that you are in charge of helping him and if this helps then that's great! And if it doesn't then you stop. I can't believe the difference the medicine is making for my daughter in school. She tells me that she wants to take it so she can focus and "be good". By all means, research your options on good sources and wait until you feel ready and can stick with it for two weeks at least. In the meantime, watch this encouraging video from an adult with ADHD to her mom.

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