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Old 03-23-07, 01:04 PM
newbobturk newbobturk is offline
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Can anyone help me out here, please? newbobturk from spokane, WA

Hello, you guys. I am new. No, I do not have adhd, but my 12-year old son does. My husband and I feel like the worst parents in the entire universe. I read the thread from the person who was totally depressed and felt worthless, etc. and that is how I think my son feels. He was diagnosed when he was about 2. He does have really good friends, who "enable" him in school by telling him to be quiet when he's about to get into trouble, etc. He often tells me he is depressed and stupid, etc. I have taken him to counselors, have him taking adderol (he has also been on concerta, strattera, ritalin, etc.etc). We tell him the same things over and over and over and he continues to do them anyway. His room is a complete WASTE AREA. I am frustrated, my husband is frustrated, and our son feels hopeless.

I realize this forum is not for parents of those who have ADHD, but I am really hoping that you can help me by telling me what is the best way that I can help him in school and at home to feel like a worthwhile person. I want him to be a successful person and to be happy, and I also want to understand why he does the things he does.

Please, can you tell me what YOU THINK are the most helpful things that your parents did, or could have done, to help you? If you had a child with ADHD, what would YOU do to help them succeed?

Thanks very much.
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Old 03-23-07, 01:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newbobturk
My husband and I feel like the worst parents in the entire universe.

I realize this forum is not for parents of those who have ADHD

Please, can you tell me what YOU THINK are the most helpful things that your parents did, or could have done, to help you? If you had a child with ADHD, what would YOU do to help them succeed?
Welcome!

Yes, the forum Is for parents of those who have ADHD!

There is a Parenting Issues section here: http://www.addforums.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=105

You will find lots of parents in the same boat as you. I think we all feel we are horrible parents some of the time. You have gotten him the diagnosis and meds and are actively seeking help, so that makes you concerned and good parents, in my book!

Unconditional love is my primary recommendation. Every day tell him you love him and give him a big hug.

Here are some short videos that I love:

http://www.drthomasebrown.com/resources/index.html

Pick up some books if you haven't already. Hallowell "Driven to Distraction" and "Delivered from Distraction" are both wonderful. Dr. Amen's "Healing ADD" is great because of the pictures!

He may also need some coaching and Cognitive Behavior Therapy.

Good luck. You have come to the right place!
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Old 03-23-07, 02:22 PM
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Welcome! As Jeanie said, this *is* the place for you!

I have a 7 year old son with ADHD (plus possibly BiPolar, Aspergers, or PDD-NOS). I am also being treated for ADHD.

I understand your pain and frustration. It is so hard to see our children struggle. To help our son, aside from meds (abilify + prozac for him, adderall xr for me) and counseling, we try to give him a lot of time and help to develop the things he loves and that he is good at (for our little guy, it's Legos, mostly). We always try to "catch him being good" and reward him either with praise (verbal and hugs) or rewards (we are trying out various point systems).

It's brutally hard. There are days I feel like I've spent 24 hours saying "No!" or "Don't do that!" But there are days when he tells me, right before he goes to sleep, "I'm so proud of myself. I had a *good* day!" Then I feel like the queen of the world.

It's touch and go, and trial and error, and more trial and error ...

Go easy on yourselves ... you clearly love your son and want the best for him. Look around here at the forum, I'm sure you'll find some words of wisdom and comfort ... I know I did.

Best wishes to your family,
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Old 03-23-07, 04:37 PM
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Welcome!

Jeanie & Mom23 are correct.

I have seen that side too, and feel your pain. My son who is 15 now, was dx at age 5. It's been an uphill battle. He was also dx with BPDII a couple of weeks ago. As if ADD wasn't enough...
He has struggled in school his entire time there, his room is a pit..and he has been in and out of trouble in school and wiht the law.
Everytime I want to give up....I remember, I didn't get dx until I was an adult, and many gave up on me. I don't want to do that to him. However, there is a clear line you must draw after you have done everything. At a certain age, and wiht medication, and counseling you must make them responsbile to their actions, and must take responsiblity. Tough love applies to these kids at some point. And ADD is not an excuse for everthing. If you let it be they will and do take advantage of it, and have little hope to change. It's tough I know.
It was hard because I was so new to ADD when I had him, I made so many mistakes..it's taken a long time to undo. I am happy I learned from him, because while my other younger 2 have it...They are much more productive and have very few issues in school or with behaviour.

I hope you continue to read here, as the ladies above stated this is a forum not just for ADDer's but for those who love them.
We hope by understanding us, it will help you understand your son.

Good luck and let us know how it goes.
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Old 03-23-07, 11:03 PM
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newbobturk, as has already been said several times....you have most definately come to the right place. Not only is this Community filled with a wealth of information. But the people here are Understanding, Caring, Supportative & Encourageing.

I had 6 kids, 3 with ADHD, 3 Without & our son, who was ADHD also had Learning Disabilities....they are all grown now. I wasn't dx with ADHD until I was 45. Hubby had ben dx as a child but didn't like how the meds made him feel so he stopped taking them until shortly after I was put on ADHD meds & then he gave them another try.

First, when your son tells you that he is stupid. Point out to him that even though he may "feel" that way right then, that feelings can often be deceptive & this is one of those times. If he does something "stupid" tell him that we all do stupid things...especially adults..(seems like the older I get the more I catch myself doing "stupid" things-I'm 53) And that there is a difference in who he is & what he does.

There were a few things that I was wondering & I may have some suggestions, depending on the answers. Do you have other children ? How much does your son know about ADHD. Not just that he has it & the medication he takes helps. What ADHD actually is & how it impacts the lives of those that have it & their families in numerous different way & that ADHD can be turned into a huge Assett. It can enable you to do some jobs better than alot of other people can do those particular jobs.

Do you know how well the Adderall is working for him compared to the other meds? Is he reluctant to take his meds and/or does he makes comments like " I hate having to take this stuff everyday ? Also at his age, the "Hormone Rollercoaster" as I call it is beginning to kick in & there may be alot of things about himself that are changing that have nothing or very little to do with ADHD. Know what I mean ?

And things like his room, even though it is a "complete WASTE AREA" unless things like his personal hygeiene are effected by his room because he can't find where his clean clothes or, his hairbrush/comb, ect.....try & just ignore it as much as you possibley can.....at least for a while & see if you notice any difference in him. One more thing, does he have to take any of his meds at school ?

If for any reason(s) you aren't comfortable with or would rather not answer any or all of what I asked, thats cool .

BlessedLady
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Old 03-24-07, 01:31 PM
newbobturk newbobturk is offline
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First, I would like to SINCERELY thank all of you who replied. I have never sought out any support for this before, and I am now wondering why. Going through all of this alone has been very difficult. As one responder said, my husband also was treated (with large quantities of Ritalin), and still has ADHD, takes nothing for it because of his past experience. He is a construction worker who continually RUNS all day and this job is very well suited to him. Basically, he takes no role in helping me with our son - who is our only child. (I think he carries a tremendous amount of guilt over this, because of the large possibility that Michael has inherited this from him.) Regarding my son, Yes, he hates taking his pills every day. If I don't watch him take them, he throws them out, hides them, etc. etc. He knows that he does MUCH better with them, but still sometimes says, "I think I can do this without them". We have tried every drug out there, and he is currently on a HUGE dose of Adderol. (he takes a 35 mg. + another 10). He was in the 98% range of activity at 2 mos. old. We had to remove his crib and put the mattress on the floor because he would flip himself out of the crib repeatedly, landing on the hardwood floor. In kindergarten, I had him on Ritalin. One day, after school, as my friend was picking him up, in front of all the other moms, his teacher said to him, (very loudly), "Michael, did you take your pill today?" He said yes. She said, "well, go home and tell your mom that tomorrow you need to take two". (no, I am not kidding-he was 6!!!!!)
After a long chat with the counselor and the principal, the teacher was severly reprimanded.

I live in Spokane, WA. and there is a children's unit at a large hospital here where they have a very respected Dr. who runs a program called BEST. In the third grade, I enrolled Michael in that program. (It about KILLED me to enroll him as I had to literally commit him to the psych. ward at the hospital). He was there for 6 weeks, during which time the school counselor was required to attend weekly meetings and bring all of his school work. It was a great program and I feel comfident that his treatment is appropriate. It is VERY difficult for me to understand what he is going through, not having ADHD. I love my husband very much, but the support I get from him is non-existent. None of my friend's kids have ADHD, so they are no help either. My husband's mother said, "the happiest day of my life was when Mike (my husband), graduated from high school because I knew I was done dealing with teachers, counselors, and principals". She told me basically that Michael will never be able to really have a "normal" job, and to just accept this. (My husband's brother, who doesn't have ADHD, is a CEO of a very large bank) and he is definately her "golden child". My husband is not a "talker", but I'm sure you can see how much pain he must have due to the above experiences.
Once, his mother told me that a teacher pushed him down a flight of marble stairs. He didn't tell her or his father about this, and that night, at a bowling league, one of her friends said, "Marilyn what are you planning to do about what Mr. X did to Michael today?" She said she packed up her ball and walked out. She asked Mike about this (he was 14) and he said, "well, that kind of stuff happens alot, and I didn't want to get in trouble." She said she called the principal at midnight, woke him up, and said, "my husband and I will be there at 8:00 am and Mr. X's As_ had better be there as well." I really think that the biggest problem with ADHD is the way that other people treat those who have it and their total lack of understanding. In regard to Michael, I have explained to him that he is "normal", as has his doctor (an ADHD specialist who also has ADHD himself", and others, but I know that he doesn't feel this way. Again, I want to say "thank you" for just listening and offering advice.
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Old 03-24-07, 03:03 PM
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Praise him so he can praise himself.

I am also a male I can relate to his feelings well. I always wanted my parents to be proud of me, even today, I occationally, ask myself if what I'm doing will please my parents. One of which is dead the other lives many states away.

ADD is not a death sentence. But you do have it forever. Don't let the word DISORDER fool you into thinking he has something wrong with him.


Quote:
Originally Posted by newbobturk
My husband and I feel like the worst parents in the entire universe.
We are all going through this life for the first time, this means both you guy's and your son. He feels bad as it is. He may begin to feel responsible for your feelings too. This breeds co-dependancy vs. dependancy.

It can also make you think you have to act a certain way to have him feel a certain way. That is a lot of pressure for everyone to deal with. Be who you are and let him be who he is.


Quote:
He often tells me he is depressed and stupid, etc.
The best thing that my parents did for me was to enroll me in martial arts, karate. I believe that it teaches self-disipline and also will take care of the bullies that will very likely pick up on his low self-esteem and use it to make themselves look better for the girls.

Kids are cruel, I never told my parents about 90 percent of them because I didn't want them to feel bad or worse than they already did and because I was ashamed of myself for not being better at warding them off.

Depression can very likely be a co-morbid condition that is a result of things not going the way you want because ADD gets in the way.

I have a problem with chronic depression because I have been frustrated with wanting to be what I couldn't for so long, it became a part of who I am. I didn't recognize this until recently.


Quote:
We tell him the same things over and over and over and he continues to do them anyway.
As you know if you do the same thing as you've done before, you'll get the same result. He may work much better with written notes or stick-ums.

This a good idea also because it will teach him a good way to organize his thoughts and plans on paper. Learn how to teach him coping skills. I can tell you many more if you want.

Reward him and praise him for what he does well, over look the minor infractions. Many ADDers work best with recognition of their work. This will also instill a feeling of being successful. If you add enough of these successes together. He will believe he is successful.


Quote:
His room is a complete WASTE AREA. I am frustrated, my husband is frustrated, and our son feels hopeless.
A trait of ADDers is being disorganized and messy. I think it has to do with being creative. Have you ever known a creative person who was neat?

I never let neatness get in the way of being creative.


Quote:
I want him to be a successful person and to be happy, and I also want to understand why he does the things he does.
Read about it from many differant angles. Stay on the forum for a while. Teach him to educate himself on ADD.


Quote:
If you had a child with ADHD, what would YOU do to help them succeed?
I would seriously try to love him for who he is and not what I want him to be. Learn to appreciate his uniqeness. Let him know it is OK to be who he is.

Everyone has a greatness in them. Find it and praise it.

Have him learn about the many great people who are very similar to him. Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, Einstein, and a multitude of entreprenuers in every type of business.

I wish you the best.
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