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ADHD Parents Together
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Advice for getting child to testing?

After waiting for 4 months for the appointment, and getting him to the office, my son refused to do the neuropsych testing. Everyone thinks we should get it (school counselor, therapist, pediatrician), and I don't want to potentially throw medication at a problem when I could understand it better. Maybe it's not even ADHD.

SO, does anyone have advice for convincing a sometimes obstinate and anxious 12 year old to go through with testing? He has threatened to not answer questions honestly. But he has also expressed some regret that he wasted my time with the other appointment. I never know when those more understanding moods are going to come around.

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What are his reasons for not wanting to take it?

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"it's stupid," he thinks he could be doing something more fun with his time; "you can't make me" (i.e., wants control); probably doesn't want to be alone with a stranger

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My inclination is to make sure you really understand his concerns about the test, to begin with, and empathize with whatever they may be. Then see if there's a way that you and he can address those concerns while at the same time addressing yours (i.e., having him do the testing). For instance, it seems to me that you should be able to be in the same room with him during all or most of it-- just bring a book and sit in a corner, if that helps with the anxiety. Make it clear, if you haven't, that this isn't a test that he can fail-- i.e., he shouldn't be worrying about getting a bad grade, or anything like that. It's not that kind of "test". Maybe plan some kind of fun event of his choice to do afterward - help him with that sense of control.

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Thank you for the ideas. I know some of it is basic parenting, but it's still good to hear from folks.

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Hi keep trying, keep seeking people who can help you. Medication is up to you, your doing the right thing by questioning it. My Child is 8 yrs old and I was hesitant about meds and I still am. Always remember your great parent when things get tuff. God bless!! All children are ☆'s

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give him some type of reward... it always work

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With my 13 year old grandson I often have to use some kind of a reward to accomplish something like that.

What problems is he having that you're considering this testing?

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Thank you. With the first attempt, he had an award offered for afterwards. Maybe I need to up the ante this time! (I respond to the next "Reply" in this string with more details about the background of problems.)

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We try to help each other openly on this forum so I hope you excuse my bluntness. A sometimes obstinate and anxious kid sounds like a normal 12 year old. Is he impulsive or inattentive to the point where it is disruptive to forming healthy relationships or being productive ? Learning in school or applying learnings is near impossible? What is the root of the issue that would cause you to want testing done? He's 12, normally ADHD behaviors are noticed sooner, as the science strongly suggests you're born with it.

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I guess I haven't properly introduced myself to the forum. My son has always been rather quick to anger and had some issues with group activities (e.g., quitting teams after he starts them, not liking loud places), but we thought with exposure and maturity he might grow out of it. But it's escalated. In the middle of 6th grade, he started to show more and more disturbing behaviors at school. He blurts out inappropriately, talks back to teachers, refuses to do the classwork. If one little thing (in my mind) goes wrong, he'll let it ruin the next 6 hours, sometimes going silent (it's like he regresses to toddlerhood). A psychologist witnessed such an episode of shutting down and thought it looked like there was terror inside him.

I have an older child, and have witnessed annoying behavior in other children. But with this child, there's severe interruption to his ability to learn (detentions, a suspension, and now he's separated to a different "class" room with one other child), so we want to see what else we could be doing. We've tried therapy, but after a few visits, he refuses (of course, we'll keep trying to find someone else in case it just hasn't been the right fit). We want more information to help us help him. Thus, the testing.

Yes, it might be that he doesn't have ADHD, and so you might ask why I'm on this forum, but I have seen so many descriptions here by other parents that resonate with me. In addition to ADHD, people discuss OCD, anxiety, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, and depression, which could all possibly be applied to my son.

I was really excited to find this forum. (This is coming from a person who does not like social media. I only joined Facebook last year because I had to for a certain group activity.) So, it has not come very easily for me to share. Thank you all for "listening" and I greatly appreciate the feedback!

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Don’t question yourself. Go with your instinct and get him tested ASAP. My son didn’t start showing til middle school. I had the same doubts as you. I ended up not getting him tested til 8th grade because I drug my feet. Biggest mistake ever

A lot of kids don’t present until middle school. Actually, high iQ and mainly inattentive types don’t present til middle School because they have found other ways around it

My son at 13 stayed the same thing about the test saying he would refuse. This is a normal response! He is scared and doesn’t want to be tested. My son did get tested and the tester said that he started to enjoy it about 30 minutes in to it

One of the replies on here was spot on about addressing his concerns you have to understand that when you say “testing” they get worried that something is wrong with them They hate to be different Especially at his age Explain that people’s brains work in different ways they are just trying to figure out how his brain is wired and how he beat learns Look up all of the famous people who are ADHD and share those stories with him He will see that some of the brightest minds in the world are wired the same way he is!

God bless yo mom for doing the right thing!!

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Thank you SO much!

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My grandsons psychiatrist says a lot of mental illness like ADHD, oppositional Defiance disorder, Tourette's, have intertwining symptoms.

There are some illnesses that get worse especially when kids get near their teens. Schizophrenia and anxiety disorder are two that I know from some people who have experienced it.

Glad you have found our forum and hope we are able to give you ideas to help. Although most of us are still trying to figure it out ourselves.

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