iVillage Member
Registered: 07-30-2003
Wed, 08-13-2003 - 9:56am
Hi my name is Mary. I check the boards from time to time, but have never posted. I have read a lot of posts and feel like ya'll know my son personally. He's 10 and last year was the first year he was on Adderall. That was 4th grade. We had struggled with it every year. Putting him on meds, that is. At the end of second grade, he barely passed. At the beginning of 3rd grade, he got a wonderful teacher. She said she wanted to work with him, because she didnt really like to put children on meds. By the middle of the school year she was frustrated.

I have read a lot of mothers saying that ADD/ADHD has been linked to being gifted, so I dont know if anyone can relate, but math was the biggest problem. We would teach him a math function and he would KNOW it and then the next day he was like "Huh"?. So finally we put him on meds. He passed last year with A's & B's.

And it wsnt just the academic part. We have experienced all the other, too. From the time he was born. At 15 mos, he ripped the sink pipes out from under the sink in the Dr's office and flooded it because he couldnt wait any longer. Many more stories like that. We didnt dare take him to churches, which I regret(we do now). In second grade he wore a necklace that had a fish on one side and Jesus on the other side. His teacher(bad teacher) said it should say devil instead.

Its a relief to read some of your posts. I feel silly sometimes when I talk to my family about these things. My husband and I both come from big families. My sister had 5 children and his brother also have 5. So they look at me like I got it easy with 2(also a 2yr old). I dont know if its the ADD/ADHD or what but I fell like I have 5 children. I told my husband I dont think I can handle anymore. Talk about feelin like a failure.

My son really resists the medication. He says it makes him not want to anything. So I didnt make him take it this summer. Needless to say, not a fun summer. If I didnt know better, I would say he was on a stronger dose of Adderall, because it subdues him more than usual. Anyone ever noticed this? I have an appt this week to try a lesser dose, but would anyone recommend Strattera or Concerta? I mentioned it to my dr once and he said he would give it a try but he didnt really think it worked very well. He's 5 ft and 130 lbs so I dont worry about his appetite being suppressed. Anybody switched from Adderall to something else?

Any feedback would be appreciated.


Mary H


Avatar for iheidi66
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 08-14-2003 - 10:09am
Hi Mary.

So am I right in thinking that you just put him back on his meds after breaking for the summer, and he is more subdued than he was over the school year? I have ADD myself, so forgive me if I read it wrong. ;o) If this is the case, how long has he been back on the Adderall? It could be that his body is just adjusting to being back on.

Concerta is Ritalin in a 12-hour time release form. We started meds with my kids over this past school year, too, and for my dd it was a real rollercoaster ride trying to find the right med and dose. She started on Ritalin and we saw positive changes for the first couple of weeks, other than crashing down HARD coming off of it. After that first couple of weeks dr. increased the dose because it leveled off and wasn't really doing anything. Once we found the dose that seemed to work for her, she still rebounded hard and had a lot of trouble getting to sleep (which had always been an issue anyway, but it was worse). Then after a couple of months she got REALLY aggressive and short-tempered at school, way more than she was before meds, and she had a couple of bathroom accidents at school (she just turned 11). Dr. said those are both possible side effects and switched to Adderall XR. She did much better, rebound was less but she still needed a sleep aid at night, and she was still forgetting homework, etc. We waited until summer to switch again and now she's on Strattera and doing beautifully. No rebound, because it builds up in the system similar to the way an anti-depressant does; it's more consistent. She seems to be more in control of her reactions to things than she was on the stimulants; it was like she had no control over what flew out of her mouth. It will be really telling once school starts, but so far I am happy with the Strattera. Other benefits have been no trouble getting to sleep (well, for her--LOL!), so no need for the sleep aid, and since Strattera also has a mild antidepressant quality she no longer needs the low dose of Prozac she was on for childhood depression (I now question that diagnosis anyway).

I can relate to your story about your son and the pipes at the dr's office in a way. We were living with my mom for a couple of years when she was ages 4-7. She was acting up and my stupid mother had been attending these educational workshops since she works as a teacher's aid in Title I in the school system. This dork was talking about discipline and ADHD and said the bathroom was a great place for time-out because it's so boring in there. The most the kid could do was unroll all the toilet paper, and what then? My mom is really overbearing and we were having issues over discipline; she couldn't let me and dh handle it ourselves. So any way, the bathroom became the time-out place. Boring? Whatever. It made my daughter so mad that one day she finally BROKE the lid of the tank by shaking the toilet or kicking it or something. Of course then my mom decided we needed to pay to replace the toilet. My daughter had BIG impulse control issues last year and I couldn't believe the stuff that would come out of her mouth when she'd get mad; it just flowed like a river.

Good luck with your son; I don't know if this helped much but thought I'd share what our medication experiences have been.

Hugs, Heidi



"That which we pers

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-14-2003
Thu, 08-14-2003 - 10:53am
Hi Mary, I usually read the boards every now and then when I have a minute, but when I saw your post, I just had to reply. We sound almost identical. I also have a 10 year old son. He was diagnosed with ADHD in the beginning of 3rd grade. His teacher wanted to keep him back that year, but we ended up putting him on medication after his diagnosis (20 mg Metadate). Well, his grades improved and he went on to 4th. He had a great teacher last year and got mostly B's. So now we are on to 5th grade.

I just recently switched his meds to Strattera. I wanted to try something different. Even though he improved immensely on the metadate, I was concerned about his sleeping habits. On the metatdate, he wouldn't go to sleep at night until 11 or 12. And it was a STRUGGLE to get him up in the morning.

At the beginning of the summer, we switched to 18 mg of Strattera. AFter a few weeks and NO CHANGE, it was increased to 25 mg. And to be honest, I don't see much of a change with that either. I have an appointment next week for a med check and I'm hoping to increase it to 40 mg. His target dose for his weight (he is only 68 lbs).

Needless to say, it has not been an easy summer also. I can't tell you how many times I ended up in tears, thinking I just can't take it anymore. I never knew it would be so hard to raise an ADHD child. I also have a soon to be 6 year old daughter with no signs of ADHD (Thank God).

I am going to try to stick with the Strattera for a while longer. Maybe a new dose will help. At least I can get him to bed and ASLEEP long before 11 or 12. If in the next month or so, he doesn't show any sign of improvement, we will probably go back to the metadate and I'll have to deal with the sleeping issue again.

Please know that you are not alone and I feel the same way. If you would like to email me, send a little note to my ivillage email and I will answer back with my "regular" email address. It's always nice to have someone to talk to that you know is going through the same thing.

Take care and take 10 deep breaths :o)


iVillage Member
Registered: 08-14-2003
Thu, 08-14-2003 - 4:00pm
Mary, It seems I'm having trouble with ivillage email. Here is my email that I use regularly I am more than happy to chat and commiserate :o) with you anytime. Our sons sound so much alike. p.s. I can't talk to my family about this too much as they are all "old school" and don't believe there is such a thing as ADHD. :o( Chris
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-30-2003
Fri, 08-15-2003 - 12:54am
Thank you both.

Heidi, actually I had given the Adderall to him a few times over the summer. You know, when I just couldnt take anymore. Thats when I noticed the effects, but I never thought about the readjustment. I guess I'll have to wait and see.

This was the first week of school and we both forgot his meds the first couple of days. So yesterday he told me he had to remember today, cause he had to be able to finish all his work. So many times I tried to explain to him why he had to take his meds and he never seemed to get it. That made me feel some better.

Chris, I would love to have someone to talk to. My email is I have a 2 yr old who so far doesnt have any symptoms. He's very active, but he can entertain himself, he can sit still while I read to him; things that never happened with Erik. But he loves his older brother and tries to act just like him, so when Erik is bouncing off walls, Nathan does the same.

My family has been very understanding, but I cant really talk to them either. My little sister has a neurologically damaged child. She is 10 mos and cant do anything physically. So I feel kind of like a heel if I blow off steam to them. My sis says she would love to have a kid bouncing off the walls. So I try to listen and let her blow off steam. And I am grateful for my wonderfully active boys. LOL

So yeah lets talk.

Thanks again


iVillage Member
Registered: 08-19-2003
Tue, 08-19-2003 - 1:48am
Well, my son has been on regular Adderall, Adderall xr, concerta and some other meds as well. I have to say each child is different. My friends daughter is on concerta and is doing great. My son took it and it really did nothing. When he does stay off a few days he does seem less active(than usual). He now seems better back on the old adderal that you have to take a few times a day but it could be he's ready for school to start. Try a diff. med. it may make a difference.
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-25-2003
Mon, 08-25-2003 - 10:18am
Your story is exactly a carbon copy of our story. I have a 7 year old son who has AD/HD he has been on Metadate for a year now but we switched about a month and half ago to Strattera. We started at 10 mg for 3 weeks then went up to 18 mg for 1 week. The only thing so far it has helped is with sleeping. He's still bouncing oof the walls and driving us crazy last week I called the doctor back. She suggested we up it again now he's taking one 10 mg and one 18 mg. STILL NOT WORKING. They want us to hang in there till they slowly get it up to the dosage for his weight but don't know if our nerves and patience can take it. I was wondering how you are making out and whether it turned in a success story for you or anyone else out there in message board land?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2003
Mon, 08-25-2003 - 11:57am

We switched from Adderall to Straterra and have really liked the results. My son, almost 10, has been diagnosed with ADHD and ODD, and he became very anxious and phobic on stimulants. But he has done considerably well on Straterra this summer. However, I believe his dose needs to be increased and I intend to go pick up the added dosage TODAY! He is having difficulty settling down and doing his summer book report. He just wants to write 2 sentences and be done with the whole thing, and it's frusrating me to no end!! He's always been a short-cut taker when it comes to his school work, but when tested, he's extremely bright. He simply refuses to put forth the effort! His appetite has been fine and now he can sleep which was a big problem with the stimulant meds. I believe part of the irritability he suffered was from sleep deprivation. The jury is still out on whether he'll do well in school on Straterra, but since he wasn't doing great on Adderall, we're just happy that his outlook on life is better and the anxiety is at a minimum. Good luck with your decision! Dana
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2003
Mon, 09-01-2003 - 1:31pm
My son of 14 years had been on Ritalin for 9 years. Then last year we decided to try the concerta becase he was going to be entering high school and we didn't want him to have to take meds at school. It is hard when you have to take Ritalin 3 or 4 times a day to bring it to high school. You are responsible for your own meds in High school. So over the summer we started him on the Concerta. Not only did he have an appitite with this drug, but he only had to take it once a day because it is an 8 to 12 hour pill. He had less side affects and didn't change his personality as the Ritalin tended to. He doesn't have peeks and valley's like he did as the Ritalin was wareing off before his next pill. The only down side to this drug is that it is very expensive. Even with insurance we still pay 50.00 for a month supply. I used to only have to pay 12.00 a month for the Ritalin. The results from this drug far outway the costs. For us this was a good move. I can only speak for my child and how this drug has improved his life. I hope this helps you. You Dr. can give you a coupon for a 20.00 discount for first time users. I would try this drug during a vacation or over the summer because it can take up to 3 weeks to kick in. For my son it happened almost immediately. He doesn't give me as hard a time now taking this medication. Hope this helps

Good luck,


iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2003
Mon, 09-01-2003 - 1:51pm
Hi, My son is 12 and has been diagnosed with ADHD since kindergarten, when he

would've failed if it weren't for the diagnosis and specialized treatment they

give you in school. I also heard that ADHD was linked to being gifted but my son

is in the 7th grade on a 4th grade level in math and 5th grade level in reading.

He is in resource classes for these subjects. Growing up over the years I have

experienced behavior problems with him, the teachers and councelors know me by

name and face but I have to say it has gotten better with each year, especially

the last 2 years. I have also had problems with him wanting to take his medicine

because he says it makes him feel dull and boring, so I didn't give it to him this

summer and it wasn't as bad as I expected it to be, but I found myself saying the

same things over and over again. He started out on Adderall and he complained about

the side effects and he is currently on Concerta, but still everything is still lifeless

for him when he is on it, so I am going to ask the Doc if we can try Strattera.

Good Luck,


A Mom helping Moms work from home!

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2003
Mon, 09-01-2003 - 2:46pm

Hello my name is Kamaria Boyden and I have a 6 year old son who has ADHD we have tried everything my son was diagnosed at age 3 he was just hyper jumping off the walls could not calm down just running around and going non-stop could not sit still and would be very aggressive we would go into fist fights bad he had such a mood disorder that we would fight he would attack the kids at his daycare distroy things in the classroom would not listen or sit still at night he could not go to sleep he wouldn't go to bed until 1:00am or 2:00am then be up every hour well I have two cousins that are ADD and ADHD and they told me I needed to get him seen and also the owner of the daycare told me that her son was the same way he was ADHD so I went and got him seen at first we just tried to control his aggressiveness but with Zyprexa which really helped but his hyperness was getting worse so we decided after a few months we'd try some meds. for ADHD so first we tried a depression drug which he as a zombie, then we tried concerta which worked for about a yr. then we changed doctors cause I found out the one he was seeing had him on too many meds. so we went to a new dr. that speciallized in children with ADHD so we had to slowly get him off some of the meds and go to a lower dosage then the concerta stopped working for him so then we tried Adderall which worked for about maybe 4 months and he was just emotional crying would just cry for no reason so then she told me about a new drug that just came out Strattera and let me tell you that drug is wonderful it does take about two months to really kick in my dr. had called the manufacterer and they told her that it does take about 2 months to really see a difference to we tried it and he's calmer he can actually sit and do some work at school which he is in 1st grade this yr. last yr. in kindergarten the teacher had a very hard time getting him to sit down long enough to work and learn she went to visit him this year in his classroom to see how he was doing and she was amazed at how much different he was he is in special ed because he needs more one on one and he is behind but he is doing so much better and I can actually handle him and he listen so much better and I feel better knowing that it's not a control substance drug and a non stimulant drug that alone made me want to try it and it's one pill once a day and does last all day and night he does still have to take clonidine to help him sleep but he's so much controllable and I don't feel like I'm gonna loose my mind he can sit still play in his room or watch a movie and doing his homework he can sit long enough to do his homework which he could not do last year I would really advise you to try Strattera I recomend it to everyone that I know has a child who's ADHD but remember it does take about 2 months to see a difference and it is a big difference. If you would like to email me or have any questions feel free to respond to this email. thank you I hope I helped you out.