Friday, June 17, 2011

Understanding ADHD

This has been on my mind for a week and I haven't mentioned it because I was so angry, confused, sickened, and heartbroken. As you can tell from my photos and blog entries I really do enjoy my much that maybe I bore you.

Last week 6 year old grandson J (the one who stays over every Saturday night) was diagnosed with ADHD. I was blindsided, he is an excellent student in school and Sunday school and behaves in church. He is NOT easily distracted, does not blurt out things inappropriately, gets along good with others, and is very well liked. I have babysat for him since he was a few months old so have spend a lot of time with him. He LOVES coming over here...........and when he was 3 he'd often hide from mom and cry when she came to pick him up.....making her very unhappy. He improved a lot when he started school, although he still wanted to come here and not go with his other grandma. Now he's 6 and in school all day, mom does not need me to babysit, and he has a baby brother. Mom and dad will not answer their phones when I call (I detest cell phones for that reason-I can't call a house phone and talk to the boys.) Mom makes J call me, unless he is here and she has to talk to me. J does get really upset at times when he doesn't get what he wants-he will just cry and cry, like his dad did when he was that age. I just leave him alone until he gets over it and he is OK. I don't know what his parents do. I do know mom is bipolar and is very controlling and dad has anger issues (has seen a Dr for that). I've seen that J needs a lot of sleep, likes a routine, and enjoys quality time with a person. He is an extremely fussy eater and to get him to try something new causes him great stress.

I was told that mom told the Dr that J doesn't get mad at me because I give him everything he wants.......I do not....and he does get mad here. As a grandma I do spoil each of my grand kids (isn't that what we're for?). But I don't give him nearly as much junk food/snacks as mom does. He doesn't get his way any more than any of the others do when they are here. My other grand kids live further away so I don't see them as often. As you know I love to shop the thrift stores and garage sales and buy lots for the grand kids. My oldest grandchildren are 11 so I don't get much for them anymore...but when they were younger I always had something for them. I used to buy a lot for J too, but find fewer things now. I don't buy for his baby brother anymore either b/c I never get a thanks for anything ,(when he was born I'd bring diapers over at least once a month b/c I'd get a good deal).....I don't need to be gushed over but a polite 'thank you' would be nice once in a while.

anyway, I digress................How can a Dr give meds and diagnose ADHD when there are no symptoms? she won't even talk to him w/o mom there. My SIL and her 6 yr old saw a different Dr and he talked to each separately and gave her what seems to be a very accurate diagnosis and the boy's behavior is improving, with no drugs. So how can J be taking drugs with none of the ADHD symptoms??? I am so afraid for him. In my opinion I think they need family counseling. Dad is not home most evenings because he is at work so mom and the kids are at her parents for supper.

I know he is not my child and I don't have any say in the decisions about his life but I love this child and want the best for him (as I do for all of my grand kids).

Any words of wisdom/advice are appreciated. Thanks!


  1. Oh, Linda, we have something in common now. My 5-year grandson has been placed on similar meds by a doctor after consulting with my single-parent daughter and my grandson's teacher. Perhaps it is necessary, I haven't seen him since last August. Then I saw his energy as positive young male energy. Sometimes I think it IS a matter that parents don't have the patience or the time to deal with a child's troubles as grandparents do.

  2. I am so sick of inpatient parents that like to jump at the chance to drug their kids up to slow them down,all the kids want is one on one attention and good parenting.It is so sad for J.

  3. I'm so sorry that I haven't a clue on what to say to you. I believe in drugs only as a last resort, and I can understand your anguish, as only being able to stand by and watch must hurt. I saw that you checked out my blog, so stopped by for a visit. I hope things get better for you and your grandson soon.

  4. over-diagnosing ADd/ADHD is a real problem for children. I wish I had an easy answer for you Linda--but I dont. My youngest was diagnosed "borderline", but I held out and never agreed to go to the drug route. He just graduated college with a 3.2. Sometimes the drugs are just an easy fix.....

  5. As a former teacher I had to watch too many young kids on these drugs and it broke my heart. I am and was against the drugs, very few kids actually need them, most teachers use to chit chat in the privacy of the teacher lunchroom and say that the kids were over medicated along with all being on special education plans. It is the new thing in life, we have swung the pendulum too far and now we don't work with children anymore and we have lost patience along with over indulging them with THINGS and telling them all they are perfect and they equal. We are not perfect human beings and we are not 'equal' in all things. For instance, I am not good in math but I excelled in history and English, not the end of the world. Oh, and I sucked in ART and couldn't stand sports so I didn't expect EVEN playing time nor did I get EVEN playing time!

    So sorry for rattling, I do hope your grandson gets through this but unfortunately your hands are tied. Give him love and support and encourage him to be himself with you!! He will remember the love!!!