Wednesday, November 3, 2010

An uneducated opinion is no opinion at all.

I have been struggling with the diagnosis that Jul has a severe learning disability, and with it, ADHD. For those who know Jul i'm sure that isnt much of a surprise. But the consequences from this are rather significant. For years i have felt that Jul is so much brighter than what he can show through school work. This is the proof!!! But trying to get him to understand this, and what it will mean is still a struggle.

This will have life long implications. But will he grow out of it? Could this be because the tests are bias to being difficult for children who have difficulties with tests to begin with?

The psychologist suggested we see a paediatrician regarding his ADHD. But now they want to put him on medication. I have always been adamantly opposed to medication. But what if it will help him? I dont oppose wearing glasses because they are needed. I didnt oppose (too much) when the psychologist suggested that he do math with a calculator. (and remedial math to help his skills.) So why am i so opposed to medication if it will help him control himself and aid his ability to learn?

Any thoughts? Any suggestions? Has anyone else dealt with this? Anyone out there who has been diagnosed and struggled with this?! I cannot make an informed decision without knowledge... and i am only getting bias information from health care practitioners.


Anonymous said...

Hi Jordin
Sarrahe has high-functioning autism and adhd. We as a family have made the choice to medicate her. She is on dexidrin. We struggled for a long time with this but she struggled so hard to focus and sometimes in tears would say I can't stop. We realized it must be an awful feeling to feel out of control. The first day we gave her the dexidrin she sat down and coloured a picture for a half hour and focussed. She was so proud of herself. The proof for us that it was a right choice was the day she said she could think now and no longer felt she was going out of control. I'll pray for you as you struggle with this decision as I know from first hand experience it's a difficult one


jordin said...

Thanks Brenda for sharing! I know your struggles are very difficult and i really appreciate you giving your opinion!

Rachel said...

I know you're not on very friendly terms with your library up there :) But my course of action with any big decision like this is to sign out every book on the subject that I can find. Then read, read, read. I read stuff on-line, too. It's the best way to get perspectives from every different side of the issue. It takes a lot of time, I know, but I don't think there's a time limit by which you need to make this decision, is there?

You will be in my prayers, too, as you tackle this big decision and find the path that's right for you.

jordin said...

Rachel, there is a bit of a time limit. Only because if we dont decide before we move back to kingston, we would have to wait until we get into a Dr again, and then however long it will take to get in with a paediatrician. And i am not that fast of a reader, as you know. But no, i want to take the time and make the best decision for Jul. We are completing questionnaires for the Dr, and have an appointment for the 25th (which i have to change due to a conflict). So... i have a lot of ground to cover before our appointment.

Rachel said...

That sucks. Making tough decisions is that much tougher when there are time constraints. My God give you wisdom and clarity in abundance!

Barefoot Tribe said...

Dave Young November 5 at 11:06am
Hey Jordin,
I just want to let you know that I have ADHD and numerous other "learning differences" - all of which made me hopeless as a teenager - I was violent, suicidal, and disruptive in everything i did everywhere

My father was a teacher and expected academic success from me and treated me very cruelly and abusively. The problem for me was that I was smart and I knew it - but everyone who taught me kept asking me the wrong questions in the wrong way. I knew the answers I just didn't understand what they wanted - or else I totally had no idea what was going on (math - dyscalculai)

As a side note just so you know I never actually graduated grade 8 or high school - I was given the diplomas but never completed the work...they passed me on because they wanted to get rid of me.

I eventually graduated from university after 8 years of part-time work...I was teased by everyone I knew that I would never graduate (a re-living of highschool) so I was never "normal" but I learned to be "healthy" for me :), and accepted the fact that I take longer than other people to do what most people consider very simple activities.

When I was going through my process of discovery the DRs' told me I was bi-polar and all kinds of bullshit - even worse they gave me medications like crazy that were all mis-diagnosed. Some of these medications were as bad for me as much as they claimed to be helpful.

When they decided I was ADHD I was relieved and they gave me Ritalin which I loved - but it isn't a miracle drug. I didn't want to be on drugs so I used the time (gave myself 3 months but had to extend it to six) to learn how to live a healthy life for me - I had to really simplify my life (got rid of most of my possessions - especially from my view), removed sources of noise like a TV (living in the city killed me although I personally love the excitement and people in the city), and learned to relax and "not be incontrol".

Its hard to feel out of control all of the time so I had to learn to both relax and exercise purposefully.

The hardest part is not understanding yourself - that is what made me suicidal. I used to think it was other people not understanding me that made me suicidal but I realized one day that when I understood myself - I didn't care if others misunderstood me as much.

I think that we are addicted as a society to "norms/cool", and "having all the right stuff" - but people with these differences don't need or want "normal or stuff". We want to feel better because a lot of things in this world is very "harsh" and "violent" feeling to us because we see and feel things much more intensely than other "normal people".

I don't know if this helps and I am sorry its so long but that is my feedback - would love to help anytime/anyway I can.

Hope this helps,
God Bless,

jordin said...

this is so very helpful, Dave!! I do want to talk more!