Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Lynn33, Oct 2, 2007.

  1. Lynn33

    Lynn33 New Member

    <span style="color: #FF9900">Hi everyone, Im new to understanding ADHD. The teacher of my 5year old Nephew suspects that he has ADHD. Im trying to educate myself as much as possible about this disorder so i can be his biggest advocate. So far i have written a letter to the school requesting a meeting about finding ways to help my Nephew. When i told his teacher that i am going to take him to a speacialist, she said to dont worry about doing that, that the school will take care of eveything. Should i be worried? or should i go with my gut and send him to a specialist of my choice? Can anyone tell me of his rights and mine as his Guardian? Ive been reading about the medications these kids are taking. I refuse to put him on any kind of drugs and would rather use alternative solutions. Is their any other solutions than drugs? Please share with me other alternatives. I read this article that says if you refuse to put a child on medication that Social Services can take them from the home. This scares me. here is the link to the article Is this real? Does anyone have a link to share that outline our rights? I would like to be well informed before this meeting with the schools teacher ,counselor and psychologist. Any and all information that i can get will be helpful. </span>
  2. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Welcome, Lynn33.

    It's not the teacher's decision whether you should take him to a specialist or not, and no, the school can't always take care of everything. Sometimes a few school modifications can make a difference so the child is functioning well enough to not need medications but that really depends on the severity.

    If the teacher's impression at this point is that some modifications would be helpful and problems seem only minor at this point, I'd probably explore the school only route at this time and see how it goes. If the ADHD or school related problems seem more on the severe side, then I'd see a medical specialist as well. There are non-medication interventions that can be used alone or in conjunction with medications. A student in one of my kids' classes was the most severely ADHD child I'd seen and he used a gel ball on the desk and it was a great help to him (in addition to medications).

    Most of us start out thinking we'll refuse all medications but you will meet up with parents here whose children totally can't function without them. I was one of those parents who was determined and when I exhausted every possible resource did wind up turning to medications for two short term periods. It's one of those areas that it might be better to try and keep an open mind to because you have absolutely no idea what lies ahead.

    I wouldn't look for social services to come take a child who is being well cared for in a stable environment simply because the guardian is refusing to use medications.

  3. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    I am leary of schools, and if the child is insured I would encourage you to get private testing done. If you are his guardian this is your right. There are many disorders that can mimic ADHD, and they should be checked. In my area I believe that the professionals employed by the schools are overworked and I do not feel it is the schools responsibility to test my child unless it is necessary due to finances/insurance reasons.

    As for medication, you can make your own decision. As SRL stated, many of us were against medications and changed our ways. This is a difficult journey, but you will make it as long as you know your options and continue to research them. Welcome
  4. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Hello Lynn33 and welcome,

    I agree with the others who have recommended that you take your nephew to see a specialist, and don't rely on the school to do everything.

    Sometimes a child's behaviour can be so different at school and at home, that if you're working with an independent specialist, he or she can get a complete picture of what your nephew is dealing with. Sometimes a child with ADHD can hold it together all day at school, only to melt down at home, and sometimes it's the reverse.

    With regard to medication, I would also recommend that you keep an open mind. Sometimes alternative therapies work, but in some cases our difficult child children just cannot get through the day without medications.

    All the best,
  5. blb

    blb New Member

    Hi and welcome to the board

    Your link re social services taking kids away is from a non profit group from the church of Scientology. click here Scientologists don't believe in mental health issues.

    Re the other woman who said the school will take care of everything, not true either, unless they have a psychiatrist on duty.

    Remember, knowledge is power. If a child was a diabetic, you wouldn't keep him from his insulin. Likewise if a child does not have enough natural impulse control due to brain chemistry and as such cannot learn, and there was a medicine that could help, would you let your child go on needlessly suffering academically, possibly destroying his self-esteem to the point of turning him off to learning all together? For my daughter, she would have been a statistic academically without medication, it has allowed her to remain in a mainstream setting.

    Welcome to the board
  6. Lynn33

    Lynn33 New Member

    Thanks everyone for your great advice. I will keep an open mind about the medications, but rather try other approaches for now.

    That article i read about social services, didnt realize it was from the church of Scientology.

    trinityroyal you are so right. His teacher is telling me things
    that he does at school, but i havent seen this behavior in the home. The one thing i have noticed in the home is his lack of focus, other than that he is a well mannered kid. Oh and he can be very talkative at times.

    blb they do have a school psychiatrist on duty. But still i think
    i will get him his own Doctors and psychiatrist if needed.

    Thanks everyone, and thanks for the links.
  7. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    I would have both evaluations done, school and your own. I would not even tell the school I was having the outside evaluation done. See how close they match.

    I was against medicating my difficult child, too. When I realized her life was being negatively affected I had to give in. Thank goodness I did! The phone calls and detentions just ended.

    Have you checked out the Natural Treatments forum here on the site? GO to 'Forum list' and you will see all the different forums here.
  8. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    You have already received good advice from others I just want to add my welcome-glad you found us.
  9. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    There is no way on earth I'd trust a teacher's diagnosis. She's an educator, not a neuropsychologist or Child Psychiatrist. I'd have her tested elsewhere.
  10. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member


    You have received some good advice already. What I want to do is give you some hope.

    I am the parent of grown kids. My middle son was a purely ADHD boy. He didnt have the behavior problems that would give him any defiant diagnosis. He got into normal kid trouble but what kid doesnt?

    My ADHD son was on medication (ritalin) from the age of 4 through 14 so he could manage school. Without it he simply couldnt focus or sit still in a classroom setting. He was miserable without it. He thought being in a class was torture for his poor hyperactive body.

    He had dreams of joining the US Marine Corps from the time he was 8 years old however, he knew that to do that he would have to go off his medications when he entered high school. He did just that. He learned to manage his ADHD symptoms with exercise and willpower.

    He ran 3 miles before school to get the wiggles out and then joined the track team.

    He joined the US Marines in 2003 as a Military Policeman and successfully completed one tour of duty and was Honorably Discharged in 2007. He is now a Animal Control Officer with the Deputy Sheriffs office in upper Virginia. He loves it. He is happy and has a fiance and new baby.

    I would say this is a successful outcome for a very ADHD kid who was medicated when he was little.
  11. SnowAngel

    SnowAngel New Member

    Hello & welcome to a great support system,

    I was also told the school will handle things. I was not comfortable with that answer and got several different opinions. The psychiatric dr's(psychiatrist)came up with other issues that the school missed. A psychiatrist over several visits get to know your situation better than a one time appointment with a scool psychiatric. Most teachers don't have the knowledge on what is available to help children with mental disorders,unfortunately. :crying:

    You are his biggest advocate. You need to do what you feel is in his best interest. Nobody knows him better than you if you are his primary caregiver,please remember that.

    As far as other treatments check the other forum on natural treatments. Remember anything you try takes time. It helps if you do try the diet changes to keep a journal.

    As far as medication goes, none of us wanted our kids medicated. All medications have side affects, some are milder than others. Plus we have to go to the dr every month to get a new prescription as most ADHD medications are controlled substances and require a new script everytime.

    Contact your school district to get a copy of your rights and the appeals process. Also have them give you in writing how they determine a childs need for exttra services.

    You are doing a great job!! Keep asking the questions and advocate.
  12. Lynn33

    Lynn33 New Member

    Thanks Desari,

    Your encouraging words gives me strength.