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Old 10-07-09, 10:40 PM
suesanchez82 suesanchez82 is offline
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New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

I am unsure if this is a place I need to be, I have been to forums before and they always attack instead of help. Anyhow, since I am loosing it, I thought this would be a start.....
I have a 9 year old who was diagnosed ADHD at 2. He was put on Adderal, and Risperdal (Risperdone) for aggression. I was young when I had my son, so when he was 1-2 yrs old it was nice to know there was something going on, when he would get kicked out of every pre-school in town and not that I was not parenting him well. Anyway, years past, and the worries were always on him. CONSTANTLY. I had another son. So far he is fine.

Jonathan (my ADHD boy) has been on meds for a while, he has tried different ones, different doses, but problems always followed us. For example, he is not sitting still in school, not finishing classwork, taking HOURS to do one page of homework, that has been the story of my life.

Back in May, I began getting worried about some symptoms he was having on the meds, so I began investigating further...well there are certain things they dont tell u on the prescription paper....I got worried and decided, it is Summer time, I am going to take him off for these months and see what happens, remember, I dont know my son not medicated. I spoke with his DR and she agreed with me. Another child came out. A funny kid, who laughs and jokes, and plays. Not to say it was all good, NO, but a character I never knew emerged. I dealt with the hard times not being medicated but loved the new him...

WELL, here is where my problem begins. He starts school. 4th grade. First male teacher he has ever had. Long story short, he will not sit, he has to be bribed to finish work, kids cant stand him (which has been his whole life) when he comes home it takes him HOURS to finish a paper, when he does, it is all wrong, and the answers are in a book in front of him.
Basically I am at a breaking point myself. I need help, I havent slept in 4 nights, when I fall asleep I have dreams that he is grown and doing bad things cause of his ADHD, he has such a good life. A life I never had, a life many of his classmates dont have....I try hard, but am inpatient. He has never been a liar...he never knew how to lie. Well, he learned, he comes home, "Johnny, have your homework?" " I finished it in school" "Johnny, r u lying??" "No mommy I did" "Ok good job" THEN i get a call from his teacher that he found 8 pages of homework in his desk. He is not bringing them home to not do them. OMG, I feel like killing him at that point. I would like answers, or maybe help from other parents having a hard time...I NEED IT...

I will give you the things I have done in the years, or basically my routine to better understand...

Wake- 6:40
Breakfast ( which normally is 4 over medium eggs, english muffin, tortilla with cheese and lettuce, or cheerios with milk, of course thats not at the same time)
Get dressed
brush teeth
organize backpack
Out the door by 7:30
(a fight every morning just to put shoes on)

2:07 Pick him up
get home, a snack ( wheat thins, apple with peanut butter, cheese it's)
Immediatly homework (I dont give him a break, it makes it 10 times worse)
He will do homework until 6:00pm which is dinner time.
He stops, and has dinner..
Dinner normally ( we are brazilian) lots of meat, chicken, fish, rice, beans, salad, and he is not picky and eats everything, i have never had a problem with him eating.
7:00pm shower, and he is asleep by 7:30-8:00. Another problem I dont have with him or ever had, him falling asleep.
Mind you, during homework, he has finished one page out of 5. All those hours.
That routine sounds pretty nice, except for how he acts. I dont give him chores cause at this point ALL I WANT is for him to do good in school and homework. Doesnt work.

He has been 3 weeks, no toys, no TV, no computer, (video games have always been strictly weeknds anyway) he lost everything, and has to earn them back. well, hasnt happened. It has only gotten worse. I am involved in school, in everything, but am stuck, depressed, mad, name it, I AM.

I dont want to medicate him again, not saying I wont, but is there something more to this??

Thanks to everyone who takes the time to read this and look deep into my problem....God bless us all....
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Old 10-08-09, 05:21 AM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

Unfortunately, your child has ADHD. Just gonna put that out there up front. It's an unfortunate thing but it's what you're dealing with and these things kind of go with the territory.

It sounds like you're doing everything right, setting firm limits and enforcing immediate consequences. That's what kids with ADHD need, is to know what they can and cannot do and that there are consequences for their behaviors, good or bad. So it sounds like you have that tackled.

The problem with the homework issue is going to remain a problem. You could set up a token economy to reward him for successfully completing his homework each day. You could also discuss with his teacher making a sheet with all of the homework for each day on it, and requiring your son to bring that sheet home to you: because you know it will be coming back every day, you'll know your son just can't leave it behind and say "nope no homework so he didn't give me a sheet" because on days when there is no homework the teacher will write that on the sheet and sign it.

Unfortunately the best treatment for ADHD is medication. Therapy has been shown to be pretty poor, almost completely ineffective. 92% of children with combined type ADHD show therapeutic response to stimulants.

You mentioned he was taking Risperdal. Was he taking that before this summer, too? Perhaps a trial with him on just a stimulant, without the antipsychotic, might be worth trying. Antipsychotics can be pretty sedating and they might have been why your boy wasn't laughing, fun loving, etc.

I know this post probably isn't that helpful, but the unfortunate reality is that raising a kid with ADHD is hard, and they don't really make it any easier. We're here for you though.
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Old 10-08-09, 10:25 AM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

KMiller

Good post but one issue needs to be clarified.

Quote:
Unfortunately the best treatment for ADHD is medication. Therapy has been shown to be pretty poor, almost completely ineffective. 92% of children with combined type ADHD show therapeutic response to stimulants.
It is according to what you term therapy. Since ADHD is not a psychological issue, traditional therapy will normally have little or no effect on the ADHD. Therapy involved with teaching the parents behavior management however has been shown to be quite effective. Not nearly as effective as medication, I agree, but still effective. The combination of the two works even better.

With young children, I have seen the combination of Play Therapy, behavior management and medication to be very beneficial.

What I would always encourage with a difficult to treat ADHD child (the combination of ADHD and behavior issues) is to deal with the situation as a whole and work on all aspects. Sometime medication will solve all of the problems presented by the child's ADHD but all too often, and I might say in perhaps the majority of cases medication is just not enough by itself. Even though the child may be medicated ADHD is still present and while the symptoms may be lessened, they often are still present and need to be dealt with. Also with ADHD children, there are psychological issues that can and often do occur and these can be addressed by the appropriate therapy. ADHD is not all.

What you stated on medication is correct even if we do not like it. The NIMH study showed this clearly but it also showed value for appropriate therapeutic intervention.

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Old 10-08-09, 10:46 AM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

Apologies for not being clear. I was in fact talking specifically about traditional cognitive behavioral therapies and individual therapy sessions when I said it was not effective.

I was under the impression that things like play therapy showed good internal results but the benefits don't generalize well. Is that correct in your experience?
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Old 10-08-09, 12:11 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

Quote:
Originally Posted by KMiller View Post
Apologies for not being clear. I was in fact talking specifically about traditional cognitive behavioral therapies and individual therapy sessions when I said it was not effective.

I was under the impression that things like play therapy showed good internal results but the benefits don't generalize well. Is that correct in your experience?
I was sure you meant traditional therapy but wanted to clarify for the sake of those reading. I suspect that people are beginning to take your research claims seriously as they should and I just wanted to make the point that not all therapy is ineffective with ADHD children.

As to Play Therapy. I found that the benefits do seem to generalize well to the child's life situation with the cautions I discuss below. I used a mix of methods also discussed below and never just Play Therapy by itself and as such cannot talk much about the results of Play Therapy as a stand alone intervention.

Based on what I do know and anticipating some of your research based questions:

Play Therapy generally starts being appropriate around the age of two. At the age of nine, children begin to drift toward the use of talk therapy and by the teen years, traditional talk therapy is normally the intervention of choice.

Now very young children tend to live in the moment, in the "now" if you would. Most Play Therapy deals with the problems the child is experiencing in that "now". It can be successful and beneficial for that situation. I would suspect that specific behaviors (something measurable) would not carry over too well but with this age child, little does. Each day is new and each situation is unique.

I am speaking only of Child Centered Play Therapy developed by Virginia Axline. If you look at what where Play Therapy focuses you may see how specific behavior changes may, at times, be difficult to quantify as it works on more general areas. It's primary focus is not on problem but on the child. It works by helping children develop their unique and individual solutions to problems that face them. The solutions come not from the therapist, but from the child

Much of this, I suspect, generalizes at least some some degree but it would be quite difficult to study. Work is being done in this area however and Play Therapy has a subject specific peer reviewed journal addressing these issues.

With ADHD kids, various interventions can have very successful results as long as they are being applied. Stop them and the child goes go back to square one; little or no carry over. The same principle applies, I suspect, at least to some degree to all therapies directed at young children. Great in the immediate. Little carry over unless continuously reinforced thus my focus on teaching parents ADHD specific behavior management methods.

As an add on:

With Child Centered Play Therapy the therapist helps the child to learn:

Self control and responsible freedom of expression.
To respect themselves.
Their feelings are acceptable.
To responsibly control their feelings.
To assume responsibility for self.
To be creative and resourceful in confronting problems.
Self control and self direction.
Gradually, at a feeling level, to accept themselves.
To make choices and be responsible for their choices.

Wonderful therapy for all children and is very appropriate for ADHD kids dealing with emotional and psychological issues. But again, a plan of continuous work needs to be in place to extend to the future. That is why there is an emphasis on teaching parents emotion tending Play Therapy based tools often along with behavior management methods to help do this. It is there where I found my successes.

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Old 10-08-09, 12:20 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dizfriz
With ADHD kids, various interventions can have very successful results as long as they are being applied. Stop them and the child goes go back to square one; little or no carry over.
This is specifically what I was talking about in my second post, I was under this impression. Thanks.
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Old 10-08-09, 01:51 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

One other thing. No fourth grader should have to sit for four hours doing homework. 2 hours max. Math homework should be cut in half. Does he have trouble writing? Do you have to sit with him while he does the homework, or does he just sit by himself? What subjects is he good in and which are difficult for him?

Im curious about the respirdal too. I dont think the stimulant would keep your sons personality in.

Does he have an IEP or 504 at school? They should be helping you out too. Does your school have "resource" teachers for giving your son extra help? They can really help with homework techniques for your son.

Oh, and welcome, you wont find many people picking on you here.
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Old 10-08-09, 10:00 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

I honestly appreciate everyone for taking time and reading my long post...

Anyhow to answer a couple questions....I was 16 when I had my son. never used my age as a reason to not parent him the way I knew best. I am still married to his father, my morals are different than the average.

When I found out he had ADHD I did my investigations. The DR put him on a stimulant and the Respirdal cause he was aggressive as a baby/young child. Years went by and that dosage continued. But his aggression DISAPPEARED. So I second guessed myself on what I was giving him. I do understand that a stimulant alone would be good, but the side effects 'Freak" me out. Yes, I have put those in his body for some time, but it took now, after reading and doing the research that I find out the horrible things,
He is on a IEP?504, he has been since he was 2. I really do not understand the good it does (maybe I do not understand it at all) I was todl that if he is having that hard a time with homework, the district should provide him with a tutor that can come here to the house and help him, those are apparently my rights raising a child with a learning disability. Also that I am qualified for SSI for him, to pay for the extra things he needs. I never looked into these things cause I did it myself, unfortunatly doing it myself has cost me my life. So, if anyone can clarify this whole IEP/504 thing, my rights as a Mother, and any other info, I would be able to sleep tonight after 4 consecutive nights NOT.


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Old 10-09-09, 02:02 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

If you have not slept for four nights, go see a doctor.

Someone will come along with a link for detailed information about your rights, but and IEP is an "individual education plan". It is worked out with you, his teachers, the principal and often the school/district psychologist. It has specific goals and accomodations for your child. It should be reviewed annually at least, and more often if things are not going well.

Some common things to put in the plan; seat the child in the front row of the class(to reduce distractions), math homework to be cut in half, teacher will ensure that child has copied homework assignments into his notebook and initial it, teacher will contact parent if child has missed homework, child will not be held in from recess/lunch for punishment, student will get extra help in math or whatever from an aid x number of times a week for 1 hour sessions, if student has not completed homework within 2 hours parent will send note and student will not be penalized for incompleted portion of work.

Do you sit with your child during homework time? What is he good at, what is he not good at? What kind of grades does he get?
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Old 10-09-09, 05:23 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

My favorite for information for your child's educational rights:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/

For best results it helps to have everything in place for your child, effective med, school accommodations and positive reinforcement behavior plan. Other things may help as well depending on your child's needs at the time.

If a particular med causes unacceptable side effects, then there are others to try out. It is important to find a med and dosing that is right for your child. Both of my kids have done really well with meds, behavior plan and for the youngest an IEP. My youngest was violent and was put on risperdal for a time with her stimulant and guanfacine. Her IEP was critical in the 4th and 5th grades and is helpful now in the 8 grade while they prepare her for high school.
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Old 10-09-09, 08:42 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

Quote:
Originally Posted by suesanchez82 View Post
I am unsure if this is a place I need to be, I have been to forums before and they always attack instead of help. Anyhow, since I am loosing it, I thought this would be a start.....
I have a 9 year old who was diagnosed ADHD at 2. He was put on Adderal, and Risperdal (Risperdone) for aggression. I was young when I had my son, so when he was 1-2 yrs old it was nice to know there was something going on, when he would get kicked out of every pre-school in town and not that I was not parenting him well. Anyway, years past, and the worries were always on him. CONSTANTLY. I had another son. So far he is fine.

Jonathan (my ADHD boy) has been on meds for a while, he has tried different ones, different doses, but problems always followed us. For example, he is not sitting still in school, not finishing classwork, taking HOURS to do one page of homework, that has been the story of my life.

Back in May, I began getting worried about some symptoms he was having on the meds, so I began investigating further...well there are certain things they dont tell u on the prescription paper....I got worried and decided, it is Summer time, I am going to take him off for these months and see what happens, remember, I dont know my son not medicated. I spoke with his DR and she agreed with me. Another child came out. A funny kid, who laughs and jokes, and plays. Not to say it was all good, NO, but a character I never knew emerged. I dealt with the hard times not being medicated but loved the new him...

WELL, here is where my problem begins. He starts school. 4th grade. First male teacher he has ever had. Long story short, he will not sit, he has to be bribed to finish work, kids cant stand him (which has been his whole life) when he comes home it takes him HOURS to finish a paper, when he does, it is all wrong, and the answers are in a book in front of him.
Basically I am at a breaking point myself. I need help, I havent slept in 4 nights, when I fall asleep I have dreams that he is grown and doing bad things cause of his ADHD, he has such a good life. A life I never had, a life many of his classmates dont have....I try hard, but am inpatient. He has never been a liar...he never knew how to lie. Well, he learned, he comes home, "Johnny, have your homework?" " I finished it in school" "Johnny, r u lying??" "No mommy I did" "Ok good job" THEN i get a call from his teacher that he found 8 pages of homework in his desk. He is not bringing them home to not do them. OMG, I feel like killing him at that point. I would like answers, or maybe help from other parents having a hard time...I NEED IT...

I will give you the things I have done in the years, or basically my routine to better understand...

Wake- 6:40
Breakfast ( which normally is 4 over medium eggs, english muffin, tortilla with cheese and lettuce, or cheerios with milk, of course thats not at the same time)
Get dressed
brush teeth
organize backpack
Out the door by 7:30
(a fight every morning just to put shoes on)

2:07 Pick him up
get home, a snack ( wheat thins, apple with peanut butter, cheese it's)
Immediatly homework (I dont give him a break, it makes it 10 times worse)
He will do homework until 6:00pm which is dinner time.
He stops, and has dinner..
Dinner normally ( we are brazilian) lots of meat, chicken, fish, rice, beans, salad, and he is not picky and eats everything, i have never had a problem with him eating.
7:00pm shower, and he is asleep by 7:30-8:00. Another problem I dont have with him or ever had, him falling asleep.
Mind you, during homework, he has finished one page out of 5. All those hours.
That routine sounds pretty nice, except for how he acts. I dont give him chores cause at this point ALL I WANT is for him to do good in school and homework. Doesnt work.

He has been 3 weeks, no toys, no TV, no computer, (video games have always been strictly weeknds anyway) he lost everything, and has to earn them back. well, hasnt happened. It has only gotten worse. I am involved in school, in everything, but am stuck, depressed, mad, name it, I AM.

I dont want to medicate him again, not saying I wont, but is there something more to this??

Thanks to everyone who takes the time to read this and look deep into my problem....God bless us all....
This sounds very close to how I was as a child (I'm 20 now).

I was diagnosed in 2nd grade. I was on Ritalin till middle school when I was switched to Adderall. I never felt like it did anything, but my mother thought it did. I always struggled with homework once I got home. I do not think that problem will get better until college (much less busy work, more interesting courses).

I never had an IEP, but in retrospect, my mother and I think that it would have been a great idea. She just never wanted to single me out.

I would say the same lies to my mother when asking about homework. I don't know why I always lied, but I would lie about doing everything and anything that was unable to hold my attention. Your son is not maliciously lying to you. He just doesn't know *what* to say. It is what you want to hear. Perhaps it is something dealing with impulsivity and rewards. If he says yes (in his mind) he has satisfied you, but if he says no he will be "punished" with homework. Which one sounds better? (logic not withstanding)

I do have ask you as a child who must have been grounded for at least half of his childhood life, to try and adopt different strategies instead of grounding. The results of grounding in an ADHD child like your son and I are only short-term. Results may last only for about a week, a month at most. It's not defiance, but a lack of willpower. You would not believe the times where I told myself that I would stop being a bad boy, do my homework, stop acting out, etc. It would last a week and then I wouldn't be able to follow through any more.

9-10 was a very rough age for me behaviorally. I would have probably 3-4 disciplinary referals sent home in a good week. Be a firm parent, but try not to be too overbearing. My mother would come home from parent-teacher conferences at this age crying.

Best of luck to you, and feel free to ask about any parenting methods that worked particularly well on me.
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Old 10-09-09, 09:24 PM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

OMG, reading this post made me cry. My 11 year old son has ADD and has identical problems. I find myself yelling at him now but I am losing my patience and my mind! Yes, it takes my son 4 hours to complete 1 of 4 pages too. Or mom I need help..after he's been staring at a math sheet, EMPTY, for an hour!! He's on Strattera and I see no difference. It's his first year of middleschool and already failing 3-4 classes. The teachers are already calling telling me my son is wasting their time...what do I do? I am SOoo confused?! ow, I am crying as I type...I feel so helpless too!
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Old 10-24-09, 12:09 AM
Tanyan1 Tanyan1 is offline
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

I think that for a nine years old boy it is too many hours for homework..I always try to put myself in my son's shoes or try to remmember when I was young...

I thiink that what your son needs at least after school is some relax...Let me tell you.. my son is five , first grade and he used to leave at 2:30pm (monday he starts leaving at 11 am because he's right now without medication mmmm long story, after 11am he's all over the place his behavior is bad very oppositional ) .

That is how I work, he has an schedule from 7:00am to 8:30 pm . After school he gets home and inmediately we have lunch , I'm peruvian so my lunch is like your dinner, so after that I allow him to watch his favorite show Spongebob like an hour. Because he knows his schedule, he turns off TV and WE do homework...believe me he likes it !!!!I try it to make it FUN...I seat with him and I give him the homework from the easiest and then maybe I jump to the little harder.... I like to play with the clock...so sometimes I challenge him like "try to do it in a minute "and he love it !!! when I see him focus with his homework I move from the table and let him doing by his own.. .but sometimes he needs me there...I like to give him bonus as a reward... so he knows if he finishes the homework in less than one hour he use that bonus time in the next task (maybe Computer or TV).

I know that sometimes school is so stressful for our kids, so I try to help him to relax at home ...doing things together just playing puzzles, computer games o watching movies o dancing...try to spend time with him, do fun things together and tell him more that ten times how much you love him and how special he's in your life ...you will make him feel better ....

Another thing, I prepare my son's clothes and back Pack at night before I go to sleep...

Good luck and God bless our little ones,

Tanya
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Old 10-24-09, 01:43 AM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

First of all, you are among friends. I have ADHD so I have not read the responses, however it is my opinion that a break from routine is needed at some times. While homework is important, the development of social skills is of greater importance. X-y=z is great for a moment, however social skills last a lifetime. Let him go out and play, and explore the word around him. This will be the most valuable lesson of the week.

Medications are helpful, however they are not the "cure all". Your child needs to learn daily skills. Once properly medicated, which may take several attempts at differant medications and dosages, his brain will be able to process prioritys and daily expoeriences and put them inro practical use
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Old 10-24-09, 02:31 AM
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Re: New here, 9 yr old ADHD, in desperate need of help...Please, THANK YOU

I can understand you wanting the best for your son, it can take trial and error to find the right stimulant. I too would try your son on just a stimulant.

I'd speak to his teacher about cutting his homework in half. The value of homework is really overrated. He needs physical activity and down time for his emotional and mental well being. A well rounded life is a necessity. Sitting him down at a table after he's been made to sit all day takes such a toll that he probably can't do the work.

Learn as much as you can about ADHD so you can help him more effectively. Be kind to yourself, you're a caring mother in a very challenging situation. Be proud of yourself for that and don't let the school bully you.
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