To the Public HS Administrators and Teachers: My child is not lazy! My child is smart and loves to learn, but my child does learn differently. My child wants to do well, but needs support from qualified teachers that understand learning differences. My child does not have the skills that you think he/she should have by this age. Please help him/her develop those skills. Just because my child is very smart, does not mean that he/she does not have learning difficulties. Create an environment that truly focuses on promoting the success of all students. Create an environment that is supportive of learning differences and helps students develop skills needed for future success. Create an environment that promotes self-confidence, self-esteem and independence. Create an environment that cares about the success of all students.
I was so reluctant to try meds for my son. I thought it would sedate him, make him a zombie and stifle his creativity. But I got to a point where I felt his ADHD would destroy our family, and we turned to medication. It turned out to be a wonderful decision. His grades turned around completely (top of his class), and he began to feel intelligent and capable. He could focus enough to express his fabulous ideas. Soon, we realized his dad also suffered from ADHD. We got him on meds too, and it’s been a life changer for our whole family dynamic. Dad feels bitter about not getting the meds as a child, and feels he could have done more in life (it’s not too late!). So I want people to know that just as someone with bad eyesight needs glasses, ADHD medication can allow you to reach your potential.
– Tamsin, California
It’s magic and fire all rolled into one. My son is bright and energetic yet easily frustrated and distracted. It is a constant battle to help him, to get help from others, because so many are ignorant on the issue and think ADHD doesn’t exist. I accept my son as he is and think his ADHD just makes his world that much more colorful
I would like for people to know that there is a whole segment of the population out there with ADHD who have amazing gifts to offer. They have stories to tell, help to give, jobs to do, people to love, lives to be lived. Without acknowledgement and acceptance of their ADHD by themselves and others, they may bury their gifts, die with their stories, never experience the feeling of putting in a week’s work they feel good about, never learn to articulate the love they truly feel for the people in their lives because they are always working on measuring up and are severely misunderstood by their “loved ones”. They frequently want their agony to end, perhaps even their lives. Can you live with that? If not, do something about it. Start a support group. Give a hug. Help a friend with ADHD. Don’t give up on us. We would not give up on you.
My 9 year old son has ADHD and struggles every day for self-control. He is extremely intelligent and especially creative (an out-of-the-box thinker), with abundant energy. He cries to us frequently saying that he doesn’t want to be the way that he is…he doesn’t want to get in trouble for talking in class, he doesn’t want to forget to turn in his homework, he wants to be able to follow the rules. The anxiety over wanting to be the “good” kid is heartbreaking. I tell my son every night that one day he is going to do great things in this world. Be POSITIVE for a child with ADHD!!
– Michelle, Florida
For years I was fidgety in class, often unfocused, but I got the work done and I had good grades throughout school so nobody ever said anything. I finally asked for help when I was getting in trouble for doing or saying things that I knew were wrong. They just came out of my mouth before they went through my head. It was always something inappropriately timed or said in the wrong way. One of my teachers worked closely with my guidance counselor and me to figure out the problem and, eventually, we came to the possibility of ADHD. Since my diagnosis I have been much more focused in school and at home, getting in much less trouble, and overall I’m very happy that I was diagnosed before I finished high school, because trying to figure out college this year without knowing why I struggle with certain things would be less than successful for sure.
I find the lack of understanding and knowledge about ADHD, especially among teachers, to be extremely disturbing. These individuals have the most daily influence in the life of a child and an opportunity to assist and help these children develop the skills needed to work with this disorder. Teachers are sadly behind the times when it comes to dealing with in their classrooms and we as parents find ourselves spending inordinate amounts of time advising and educating the educators on how to partner with us and our child to help ensure his success.
It took me a long time to see how my “boundless energy and curiosity” that were helpful in my professional and personal lives were also limiting my professional and personal lives. Acknowledging and treating my ADHD has helped me see and listen more clearly, think ahead more thoroughly, and be more effectively creative. I am also less anxious.
Because ADHD is not a visible disorder, people don’t understand that it is just as disabling as those that are very visible. It requires understanding and acceptance that people with ADHD need some accommodations at times to perform to their potential.
For me, having ADHD is like walking one step in front of a rain cloud, two steps in front of a thunderstorm [and], three steps in front of a tornado. Forgetting things, making careless errors, being confused. … these things can create havoc!
The important thing I’ve learned is to accept errors as quickly as I can, remedy the situation, issue apologies as needed… and keep moving forward. Afterall, the sky is clear and the sun is shining up ahead!