Monday, December 20, 2010

That "Bad Word," MEDICATION

If you've got an ADHD child racing up and down the halls walls of your home, you KNOW what I'm talking about. While medication has gone from almost totally taboo to half-accepted in recent years, the subject brings with it a firestorm of information and advice. I recall well-meaning folk insisting I not medicate Bobby when I hadn't even brought up the subject of meds. (Which confirms it was obvious he needed something!)

The choice to put our child on a medicine that would help calm his nerves & fill in those neuron gaps, causing him to be more successful in school and life in general, came after several years of watching him suffer. Contrary to possible opinions it did not come as a result of us being lazy & selfishly wanting our lives to be easier.  We really thought this whole thing out for a very long time. We read tons & counselled with professionals. We became educated on the side-effects both short & long-term. I teach first grade and realized as a teacher & parent that my child was higher on the ADHD radar than most children I had ever dealt with. We had no choice but to give our son a tool that would help him be successful. We chose Strattera for the first 2 years and now he's on a low dose of Adderall. Do I like that he is medicated? I wish he didn't need to be but if he was Diabetic I would also wish he didn't have to take insulin.

My final thought on ADHD medication is that the decision is up to parents. Nobody but the parents & their physicians fully understand what living with this disorder is like. We are qualified to make the choice & we're the ones who love them the most. Period.

1 comment:

Jeanne said...

Cory took medication for 6 years. It allowed him to focus and be his best happy self. He liked himself better. He even noticed that he could write better and he loved that! At the end of 6 years, in middle school, we got input from his teachers and they supported taking him off and seeing how he did. We kept in touch and he never went back on.
PS. He is 29 now.