My son with ADHD is starting high school he's not coping..neither am I

Trudy - posted on 02/12/2016 ( 2 moms have responded )

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Puberty and ADHD is what I'm dealing with and it's driving me round the bend. My son is using Concerta and even though I have physically given his tablet every morning I've just yesterday realised that he wasn't swallowing it. He doesn't want the teachers to know he has ADHD. He is terribly moody and aggressive. He is 14 years old and in all this time no doctor has spoken about another condition besides ADHD. Is there always another condition attached to ADHD like being bipolar etc?? What would be the best strategy to use with him at this point? I am feeling very frustrated. I'm trying to support him with his school work but it seems as if he's on a path of self-destruction and he doesn't want to listen to anything because he believes that everything he says and does is correct. He seems to lie quite a bit...or make up a version of the truth to suite himself. Is this normal??

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Raye - posted on 02/12/2016

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Trudy, Kids with ADHD still need structure and discipline. You can't dismiss bad behavior because he has ADHD. He still has to be accountable for his actions and have consequences when he behaves badly. You may just need a different approach to get him to respond in a more positive way.

Has he actually ingested any of the medications? If so, and he doesn't like they way they make him feel, then maybe a change of prescription might work. 20% of ADHD children do not respond to the first stimulant drug tried, or have a negative reaction to it. It's common to have trial and error with medications to find the right one at the right dosage. Also, the pills need a couple weeks to see any changes start to happen, so don't get discouraged if you don't see results right away. If you want him to give the pills a chance to work, then you need to talk to him and get him to understand that he's not bad or broken. The pills aren't supposed to "fix" him. It's like taking an anti-biotic when you have an infection, the pills may help him feel better and help him concentrate on his school, etc. that he will need to have a bright future.

If he just doesn't want to take any pills, then you (as the parent) have to decide if it's worth it to try to force him. You can try to find alternative methods of directing his energy and getting him to concentrate. Everything from diet (give healthy, balanced meals and use fresh foods without food colorings or preservatives) to exercise (Yoga and Tai Chi are good at centering and gaining focus) to relaxing (massage can be good for circulation and improve mood) can contribute to helping him manage his symptoms. Also, you need to try to catch him being good or doing something well and praise him for it. Boost his self esteem so he has confidence to work through the problems.

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Trudy - posted on 02/15/2016

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Thanks so much for your helpful comments. I will definitely try to apply your recommendations. We are battling with getting into a routine. Thanks once again

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