will my child always struggle?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
will my child always struggle?
10
Mon, 09-21-2009 - 8:31pm

Once we get to the point that my child is on medication, will she still struggle in school and with her peers? Will she always feel left out because she will act inappropriately or aggressively? Am I hoping for a wonder-drug in thinking the medications will solve her problems at school? I think I'm doing a reality check here and realizing nothing may help. Is that wishful thinking? Is it possible that the meds could solve it all for her? My heart is breaking thinking that she may never have friends again or that she'll always be looked at as the troublemaker. And have I bombarded all of you with enough questions these past few days? :)

Momma to Sweet Pea, Baby Cheeks, Snuggle Bug and Little Guy
Momma to Sweet Pea, Baby Cheeks, Snuggle Bug and Little Guy
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-10-2007
Mon, 09-21-2009 - 8:44pm

Kids with ADHD are usually socially a few years behind their peers. Some struggle after meds, some do not, it depends on the child.


There is no ONE wonder pill that helps all kids equally. For example, DD was diagnosed at 7, we tried different meds for 3 years, until at the age of 10 we found the right med. Unfortunately we had to stop using it, due to a side effect. She now uses the other "right med" for her.


I would suggest reading every book on ADHD you can get your hands on, except the ones who claim it s curable, and have your DD read also.


There is a series, called Phoebe Flowers by Barbara A Roberts,

A child may HAVE ADHD, but it is not what they ARE. Never tell a child they ARE ADHD.

Avatar for kathyjoenathan
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-04-2003
Mon, 09-21-2009 - 9:31pm

I feel your "pain" I have cried myself to sleep plenty of times while asking myself over and over in my head the same questions you are.


Yes, my son struggles sometimes in school; emotionally.

Kathy

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-10-2006
Tue, 09-22-2009 - 8:54am

Hi!


I agree with all the other posters have said, but wanted to add another note. Why not add social stories if you think they will help?

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Christine

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-03-2007
Tue, 09-22-2009 - 10:29am
What I will say is that yes, chances are your child will stll struggle some.
kids
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Tue, 09-22-2009 - 10:57am

I just had to say how cute that the kids all seem to be interested in Pokemon and such! My DD (7) loves Pokemon, Star Wars, etc. Coupled with her hyperactive behavior, I chalked it all up to her being a tomboy. But now here we are and realizing it's more than that. She has no problem making friends. It's keeping friends that's hard. Her peers are beginning to see her behavior as odd and she is all alone now.

On a side note, how likely is this going to occur with a sibling? My 5 yr old is quick to react, temper tantrums, melt downs, seriously messy and unorganized and I wonder if she has ADHD but it looks different than my older daughter. Any thoughts?

Momma to Sweet Pea, Baby Cheeks, Snuggle Bug and Little Guy
Momma to Sweet Pea, Baby Cheeks, Snuggle Bug and Little Guy
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2008
Tue, 09-22-2009 - 12:51pm

I can offer some hope. Our son had one friend in preschool. That was it. That was before medication and when his behavior was at the point of him being kicked out. At age four, he started on his first ADHD medication, regular Ritalin. At his new preschool, he became like Norm on Cheers: He would walk in the room and kids would say "Ben!" in excitement that he was there. At age six in the 1st grade, he has lots of friends.

Medication won't solve it all, but it can be life-changing. It was for our son and for our entire family. The big issue is just finding the right medication and dosage ... and this isn't just an issue at the beginning ... it's ongoing. We've had to increase our son's dosage of Concerta (long-acting Ritalin) twice in the past two weeks because of problems at school (lack of focus and impulsivity). He had a growth spurt last month where he gained three pounds and that threw everything off.

However, when the medication is right, you can expect your same energetic child, with all of the necessary behaviors in the normal range. Our son's first day on Ritalin was a miracle day to us. He was noticeably happier, calmer, focused, but still full of life. None of the "Zombie" stuff you hear about (and that only happens when something is not right with the medication). Someone here has described it like giving glasses to a child with poor vision ... it just makes things right. The only side effect we've noticed with the Ritalin family of medications is a loss of appetite, but that was temporary and we learned to work around it. It greatly improved over time.

Good luck!
Michelle

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Tue, 09-22-2009 - 1:16pm

Sure, mine still struggles. But it is *easier* for him on the meds. He has a CHANCE to pick up social skills, which were really over his head before. If yours is having social issues, please consider finding out what your school offers--ours offered stuff like "lunch buddies" groups (playing games in a supervised manner at lunch time).

And...also, I'd focus on the long-term picture. I've decided that my goal is to have a fully-functioning adult who can hold down his own job, live on his own, etc. Not having friends in, say, middle school was something that happened to me & a lot of people I knew in college. We're all fine, happy adults. So, that's what I try to think about when I'm despairing. Because, of course, it feels so sad & not fair (on anyone!).

At the younger ages, they suggested to us that one-on-one was probably the best for ADHD kids. Specifically, that if the other kid could see it was fun to play with the kid in a small situation, then they would be fun to play with at school & you could ignore the rest of it. So you try to set up playdates, which is oh, ever so much fun. Me, I'd recommend sports & stuff like that, 'specially if she's a tomboy. Pokemon usually goes a long way to creating friendships, at least the early elementary school kind.

Oh! And, I should point out that my son finds his BEST friends with other ADHDers, especially in 4th & 5th grade. There was this fellow-feeling thing there & they all knew how to make allowances for each other.

Megan
Megan
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-10-2006
Thu, 09-24-2009 - 10:51am

I think if you can find the right medication for her, then ideally her hyperactivity should mellow out and her relationships with her peers would improve.

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Christine

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-26-2009
Sat, 09-26-2009 - 7:04pm

Maybe this will help...My son is now 22. He suffered...we all suffered with his ADHD ADD forever. We started out with a routine schedule and followed it. It just worked out that way? School for him was torture for him and me. Meetings every week...

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-14-2007
Wed, 09-30-2009 - 4:12pm

WOW! your story really touched me cuz my son will be 22 in October.


Yes terrible struggles during the 90's - I couldn't home school him because he wouldn't even let me try to help him with homework - it was always a screaming match. He barely grad from HS - but he did - learned he did 2 days before grad


College was different because one, he could pick what he wanted and two, he only took 12 units - he knows how much he can handle so thats why its taking so long - we don't care - he is getting great grades and learning - just at a very slow pace.


He had to go off meds because they created double vision in one eye.

Denise