Outside Opinions: We recently chose to... - CHADD's ADHD Pare...

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Outside Opinions

KCsBM
KCsBM

We recently chose to have our child start medication to help treat his ADHD combined presentation and ODD. Medicating was a decision we did not take lightly and till this day we often question if we are doing the right thing. We are considering ourselves lucky that the first med we tried seemed to have the desired effects with minimal side effects. We also understand that medication is not the solve all answer.

...with that said, we had someone recently tell us "Oh no, you guys are medicating him!"..."You know, he's going to keep needing more and more"..."and you guys are risking him developing schizophrenia!". This person was by no means a medical professional. However, this was a very educated person. My mouth dropped and I was just stunned by that last statement!

I don't know why, but I let it stir up ten-fold the amount of doubt (not to mention emotions) in our choice to medicate our child. I (we) pray for guidance and reassurance daily as we navigate the challenges of our child's diagnoses... and people's opinions!

13 Replies
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KCsBM- First off welcome to this group of amazing supportive people...

Having a child with additional needs is something that is very hard to deal with but once you truly see how great of an impact medication has you, like we did we knew it was starting us off on the right path. There are so many more issues ahead to deal with when you have a negative person in front of you it is just one more "speed bump" on the path. We have in fact heard from many, and already experienced that it gets easier as they gain maturity and better understand how to deal with it. So I disagree with their statement and try to deal with today to get to tomorrow..

Each day I tell him, I love him and we take on the next day together.

Maybe that professional needs to find a new line of work.

Best of luck, thanks for believing medication will help your child.

Take care.

KCsBM
KCsBM in reply to Onthemove1971

Thank you for your response! Its reassuring to hear from others that have and are living our experience too! I know i/we shouldn't let outside opinions plague our journey. Yet, somehow everything is still so new and fragile. Guess we have yet to grow our ADHD & ODD "thick skin" sort of speak. One "speed bump" at a time, dealing with today to get to tomorrow!

You are definitely not alone. I cried many times over the decision to medicate. We knew that our child had something going on but at home and in controlled situations we got by. When he started school things became impossible. It turned into do something or your Pre-K child will be kicked out. We chose to medicate and know it's a necessary for our son to make it through every school day. Unfortunately there is always someone letting you know that your child is just spoiled or will grow out of it. They do not live everyday with your child . A parent knows their child. We all struggle with the thoughts that the medication may harm our child. You are doing the best you can. Just continue to educate yourself and ask questions. ❤️

KCsBM
KCsBM in reply to Jennlee6

I appreciate the support and positivity! Yes, this has been a difficult journey this far and I'm sure we haven't even reached the peak of things yet. Glad to have found this group to bounce thoughts off of. Thank you all!

We began to medicate in April. We started at 5mg of Ritalin at 8:00am, and 5mg at 12:00. That wasn’t enough. However, my daughter’s teacher at school was against the drug (she believes meditation and breathing will fix everything! Oh, I wish! ), so she didn’t give me good feedback, and kept telling me not to increase the dosage), but I didn’t see much improvement and her speech therapist didn’t either. So now, during vacation, I am trying different dosages so I can see with my own eyes. (With doctor’s knowledge and plan).

My child is not very hyper. Her problem is attention, self defeating attitude towards anything she considers difficult. She can’t sit through homework without taking 50 breaks, during which she is upside-down on the floor.

We can’t listen to people. I was once told my kids would have a much higher chance of becoming serial killers because they watched TV. All I can say is that if we can help decrease our child’s daily struggles, why not try?

Zaneasher
Zaneasher in reply to MissOz

She sounds like my son- same med, same dose, same time and now I’m feeling like it’s not enough. We tried to add the tiniest dose of guanfacine and it was awful! Still figuring out what else we need to add in, or if we just need to increase his dose at 8am & noon. Praying he doesn’t get a lot of homework this year,

Homework time is a constant battle. Anything working on your end? Thanks!

I don’t know who told you that medicating your child will risk the possibility of developing schizophrenia, but that is not true. Most every medication used to treat ADHD and ODD are well tested. We made the decision a few years ago based on 2 questions. 1. What do I need to do to set my child on the path the being successful?

2. How will not medicating her effect her ability to function in school?

The answer to both was clear. My 5 year old had no ability to understand what was happening in her brain. She is 8 now and we are on a different med now (started with chlonodine at 5, moved to Adderall at 8 and just added 2 mg of intuniv). Yes, when she is 10 or 11 we will start some cognitive brain therapy, but that takes quite a bit of time and effort and right now, and maybe forever, she will need medication. Don’t second guess your decision. Don’t listen to others who are not living your experience. You are doing the best you can. I work in a school and see how difficult it is for kids (and teachers) who need to be on medication and are not. Poor grades. Difficult peer relationships. They have trouble learning and retaining information.

Do what you need to do to give your child the best chance for success!!!

I agree with MomofBells. There is no evidence that use of the medication will lead to schizophrenia (and, with the medications being used for decades, this information would have been identified if it existed). Also, your child will need more medication with age and growth since dosing is based on weight (don't give the same dose to a 5 year old and a 15 year old). The person who gave you the incorrect information may be well educated but not about ADHD.

We also did not make the choice to use medication lightly. We prayed SO hard over this decision. It became clear to me that I had to change the way I was looking at this. If my son had diabetes would I struggle this much over giving him insulin? For us, this is no different a need than that. He needs the medication to be his best most healthy self. I would never dream of holding him back with my choices or because of my fears. This is a very real medical diagnoses that can be treated with medication. It’s been hell getting here but we have found a good medication that is really helping him. I did question myself along the way so know that it’s normal but I can honestly say that I no longer question it. I want to add that just like with any other medical diagnosis medication isn’t the only thing we changed to help our son. We have changed our behavior, our diet, we removed chemicals from our house, we have added in the use of essential oils, counseling, etc. I had to stop looking at it as a choice because for our son to succeed it no longer was a choice. I will stand on my decision any day and stand up to anyone who would criticize my choice because my son is worth that. That doesn’t mean it’s easy! I do my research, I ask questions, and I do my very best to make all of my choices based on what is best for him. Seeing the difference in our son, I know I made the right choice. I pray you can find your way to that knowledge too. Big hugs, never forget that you’re not alone!!!!! This is a great group for support. They have all helped me get to this place. I hope we can help you get there too.

I have to say I continue to be surprised at what other people will say about our kids! That being said, I also have to say that I am so grateful that there is now medication to treat ADHD. ADHD is not something that we can change as parents and it's definitely not something our kids can change. This is an actual disorder, listed in the DSM -5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). Yes, this is a real mental disorder and most kids have a really hard time with school, etc without meds. And many will need meds well into adulthood. We should all be happy that there is now reliable and safe treatment. We would not hesitate to put our kids on medication for diabetes or a seizure disorder, so why are so many parents resistant to ADHD medication? My son is now 23 and in college AND on Vyvanse, but the years when he refused to take anything for ADHD were a big waste of time and money! I always tell people that he would never have made it out of high school without his medication for ADHD. So don't doubt yourselves and don't let others influence you. Your son's life (and yours) will be much easier on meds!

I highly recommend this short talk on Medication and ADHD and frankly almost anything by this highly respected doctor. His book too is fascinating. There is a lot of ignorance in society about the subject. My approach has been to arm myself with the facts. It’s also great to have this forum to know we all are experiencing similar doubts and criticism. I hope you find this helpful:

youtu.be/LnS0PfNyj4U

Hello this gives me hope for my child. What medication worked for you ?

We lucked out on only having tried 1 med while seeing positive results. However, we worked with our son's doc to adjust to desired dosage. We currently use methyphenidate 7.5 mg twice daily.

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