ADHD - Or is it the AGE?

Avatar for keke0116
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Registered: 03-26-2003
ADHD - Or is it the AGE?
6
Tue, 05-27-2003 - 6:33am
Is this ADHD symptoms or just personality, or what? ARGH! Kevin is 11, diagnosed with ADHD (impulsivity type) and ODD. He also has some auditory processing issues, and is gifted. He is presently taking Ritalin LA in the a.m. with a small dose of Focalin in the afternoon. Just weaned him off of Strattera which had no benefit. He had done well on Concerta for a good amount of time, but after 16 months, it wasn't working as well.

Anyway, my biggest issue with Kevin right now is his totally weird behaviors. And, I do know that because there is such a huge contrast between his abilities and his behaviors it really grates on my nerves. For instance, this weekend he was playing in a tournament for his travel ball team. This is an 11 and under league, and he is one of the older players. This was his first tournament with this team. As one of the older players (and one of the better players) the coach is hoping (and expecting) him to be a 'leader.' Now, I watch him play ball ... first game, he played 'catcher' and he pretty much saved the game for them. On the ballfield, he is poised and focused and intense. They won the game, and the coaches all complimented him on how well he did, and what an asset he is to their team. But, in the car on the way to the park, he's talking like a baby, rambling on about stuff, intentionally antagonizing everyone (especially DH.) Or, between games, whenever he was near me or DH, he was being really argumentative and defiant. The constant Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde. He is really bright, but acts totally stupid (the male version of the dumb blonde!) We stayed at my sis' last night since she leaves near where this tournament was being played, and it was up in the air whether or not they'd be playing today ... and he asked DH if he wanted to shoot a game of pool, and instead of just walking to the game room like a normal 11 y.o. boy, he skipped ... with this goofy look on his face looking really effemenant (sp?) ... almost like Jack from Will & Grace.

I guess it just kills me because I see him in other settings ... karate, where he is a 1st degree blue belt, a member of the black belt club, where other parents tell me what a nice and helpful kid he is, how kind and patient his is, how helpful he is to kids in lower ranks ... or baseball, where he plays key positions (pitcher, catcher, short stop and first base) and is focused and intense and the complete vision of that "all American kid" living a great life ... or how his teachers in gifted program always say how responsible and helpful he is. Geesh! I'm not asking for perfections, but how about SOME of that evidenced at home with his family? DH tried to warm him up yesterday before the game because he was supposed to be the starting pitcher of the game ... and all Kevin did was whine and complain ... he didn't like the ball DH had, he didn't like the area DH selected, his arm hurt, he wanted to sit in my chair ... but as soon as the coaches got there, there's Mr. Sports-Guy all ready to play. Sigh!

Is this typical of ADHD kids? Or, is it about being 11 (balance between being a kid and a teen?) Am I just too sensitive or too easily annoyed? (I know I am but it is frustrating.) What do I do? Ignore it?

Any ideas?

Nancy

Nancy 

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Avatar for keke0116
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Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 05-29-2003 - 6:06am
I think I need to learn to roll with the punches a bit more. What's interesting is I posted this on the ADHD Children's board, and the reply there is that this is pretty typical-ADHD behaviors. Also posted here, and the general concensus is that this is pretty much age-appropriate. So, I guess I'm drawing the conclusion that most kids this age are goofy and immature, they do things to drive us crazy, they talk like babies, they can be very capable in some situations yet collapse in others ... but perhaps Kevin's issues intensify the situation. I'm probably also ultra-sensitive to some of it because we've had so many problems with him for such a long time that my antenna goes up any time something seems peculiar. So, I guess my best bet is to learn to live with it as much as possible. If he is making me crazy, then I'll remove myself from the situation. If he's acting inappropriately in a certain situation, what I usually do is pull him aside and talk to him quietly to try to get him to 'reel it in' ... and I'll continue that. And, most likely, if this is like other 'habits' and such, the more I ignore it, the quicker it will pass.

Thanks, all, for your input.

Nancy

Nancy 

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Wed, 05-28-2003 - 2:15am
Age gets my vote. My own dd is almost 11. She is gifted, but NOT ADHD. She acts pretty much as you describe. She can be all sweetness and light one moment and then be in total break-down mode 3 seconds later, because she "feels" that I addressed her in a tone of voice that implied that she was stupid!!!! She speaks in stupid voices, makes stupid faces, is defiant, repeats TV ads, talks non-stop etc. She also asks far more really dumb questions than usual. IOW, hopefully this too shall pass.
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Registered: 05-26-2003
Tue, 05-27-2003 - 5:29pm
Nancy,

I personally have not had enough experience with ADHD to answer your questions about symptoms of the disease. What I do know, or should I say, IMHO, that you should be proud that your child not only feels comfortable around you and DH to express how he truly feels at that moment and to be goofy and silly, but that he knows when to behave properly. He is doing, IMHO, exactly what he should. Being respectful and proper with people outside the family unit, but silly and acting out around the ones he loves and trusts.

Since he knows the difference and can adjust his attitude accordingly, I bet he will grow out of this stage too.

Take care,

Samantha

Avatar for amyteddie
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Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 05-27-2003 - 12:15pm
I totally agree with everyone else so far! Zachary can be so mature at school and then at home he is the opposite. I think preteens today feel alot of pressure to try to measure up to what is expected of them but at the same time aren`t quite ready to leave childhood yet! When I was this age I was not having near the amount of homework and activities to be involved in that kids today have. He may just want to act like a kid at home because he knows he has to act like a young adult everywhere else. I have another son Timothy that is age 9 and he is like the Jekyll/Hyde thing you describe his teachers are always talking about how helpful and quiet he is and when he gets home it is watch out world here I am! I agree with Janet I think kids act different ways in different situations. Sounds to me like your boy just wants to blow off some steam and forget his responsibilities and just stay a kid a little while longer. They grow up sooo fast now I wouldn`t worry about it too much!
Avatar for cl_janetlh
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Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 05-27-2003 - 9:11am
I agree with Sherri. This is a goofy, silly age. They're all grown-up one minute, and weirdos the next! I don't see it to such an extreme as you've described in my kids, but definitely elements of it.

I do think you can talk to Kevin about some of the behaviors though. If the baby talk really annoys you (and I can understand that!) focus on having him stop that one behavior, and let the silly walking and skipping go. Also, being disrespectful is never acceptable, but that's an ongoing battle!

Hang in there! And, try to appreciate he's doing so well in school and sports. It would be tougher if the behaviors were reversed! Kids seem to save the "worst" for their parents.

Janet

Janet


Jewish Family Life

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Registered: 03-19-2003
Tue, 05-27-2003 - 7:43am
Not having had any experience with an ADHD child it's hard for me to say if those are symptoms of it. BUT having an almost 11 year old dd and an 11 year old nephew and being at the school alot, I can tell you that the general goofiness, arguing, whinning, backtalking,etc. is PERFECTLY normal for this age. EVERY child I know this age, and I know alot LOL, is doing all of the things you mentioned.

I think they are caught between being expected to act grownup, and wanting to just be a kid for a while longer. Kevin might want to just have fun when he's playing ball and not be expected to save the team, act grownup or be a leader. Maybe it's not that important to him, it's about fun instead. Maybe the whole "You are older, be a leader, save the team, be a hero" thing is just too much responsibility and pressure for him.

Brooke will be 11 next month. She is bright, funny, talented, etc. but darn can she be annoying. I actually bought her a shirt that says "born to annoy" on it lol. She does the stupid, goofy crap all the time. Stands in the kitchen and dances really stupid, talks like a baby, etc. She argues over every little thing and thinks she is supposed to always have the last word. I try to NOT let her get to me. Personally I want her to be a little girl as long as possible. If she wants to act goofy, I let her as long as she's at home or not being overly stupid in public.

My 11 year old nephew acts just totally stupid about 95% of the time LOL. His life's goal at the moment seems to be to see how dumb he can look and act. He makes stupid comments that he thinks are funny, but aren't. Life is just a constant go on with him.

You are the only one who can really judge what is causing these things with him. But to me, he's being a perfectly normal 10 year old!

Sherri