Today We Started Our Son On ADHD Medication

Today, I did something that I thought I would never do. Something I’m sure I spoke adamantly against at some naive point in my life. {It seems like parenting is full of these sorts of moments}. I started my eldest child on ADHD Medication.

 

medication

I didn’t think I would be emotional about it. I thought I would be relieved. Instead I feel sad and a little apprehensive. I’m also feeling some hope. This has not been an easy decision. I read a handful of articles that folks post to social media in which there are very strong opinions against parents making the very decision that we have made and I wonder if they really understand.

A parent’s decision to use medication to help their child is not choosing the “easy way out”.

There is nothing easy about it. It’s not going to solve all our problems. It was a really hard choice to make. We’re doing it & fully expecting to keep having to do some serious hard work alongside the medication.

This isn’t about not allowing “boys to be boys”.

I’ve heard the argument about how we have a epidemic of parents and teachers not letting “boys be boys”. Please trust that this is not always the case. My boy has been struggling. Β He’s still going to be a boy. He’s going to be allowed to be a boy. But you have not sat next to us for the last year as we have tried different tricks and worked at different skills. This is about helping my super smart boy quiet some of the noise in his head so he doesn’t have to struggle in areas where he would otherwise be shining. This is about taking our daily life from being a battle to giving us a chance at more peace and better relationships.

Yes, I have tried {fill in blank with something you have heard helps kids who struggle with ADHD}.

Do I need to elaborate here? Suffice it to say that I have tried lots of different things.

I’m Still Going To Hold My Child To A High Standard Of Behavior.

Struggling with ADHD doesn’t mean that I give my child a pass on poor behavior or that I expect you to do so. It’s harder for him to focus and hold his tongue, but when it’s time to do those things, he needs to do it. We all have things we have to do that we aren’t good at or aren’t interested in. It’s part of life. If I don’t teach my child this, I do him a great disservice. As we work with our doctor to get the right protocol, my child still needs to work to be responsible for his actions. Medication is part of the puzzle that hopefully opens up the door to give him a chance to make this possible.

Thanks for supporting us on our parenting adventure with our kids. Today we start a new leg of the journey. Honestly, it’s not one we wanted. It’s one we have avoided and put off for years. Today I’m feeling a little defeated that we even have to go this direction, but I’m absolutely convinced it is the right next step for us.

 

3 thoughts on “Today We Started Our Son On ADHD Medication

  1. I hope that it helps ease some of the stress for your family. Keep in mind, the right dosage and the right med for each kid is vastly different. So sometimes its a bit of messing around with dose and med to get the best option! Hang in there friend!

  2. Hi Amy,

    I wanted to drop by to encourage you. Your writing is always honest and beautiful.

    I’m sharing my story in hopes that it will give you some comfort and so you know you are not alone.

    Over a period of 5 or so years, I personally dealt with some difficult life circumstances along with a difficult relationship with someone close to me. I developed some anxieties and, in hind sight I can say, depression. I honestly did not feel depressed. I can see now that I did have thoughts that I sometimes could not escape. I went for some counseling and was told I was depressed. Apart from my several difficult circumstances i felt mostly happy, so I didnt really believe him. It took me 3-4 more years before I agreed to try an anti depressant. By that time I knew I needed help. I wasn’t sleeping well, I felt overwhelmed, anxious, and like I couldn’t handle life.

    I’ve now been on medication for 2-3 years. I noticed a positive difference within weeks. I sleep much better, worry less, handle stress a whole lot better, can laugh more, relax more, etc. I do still have problems, issues & fears in my life, like everyone, but now I’m able to keep these in better perspective.

    This year, my teenage son began dealing with similar anxieties. And along with that, I’d say some anger too. He would take a little incident that happened at school (I.e. A teacher disciplining other students – something he wasn’t even involved in) and be completely stuck on that. He felt like his teacher was unjust and he couldn’t not think of what was bothering him. I noticed that he was no longer able to give a speech in class though he had given them in the past with much less difficulty. Now he was completely shutting down just thinking about having to give a speech. It became a serious issue when he refused to go to school and would enclose himself in a small, dark, safe place (I.e. Under his bed). And it got worse from there. There were a few times we 3 had to just drop to our bellies on the floor together and pray through his overwhelming anxiety.

    I immediately took him to the Dr to discuss the option of medication. And because of my personal experience, I was so much more prepared to get my son the help he needed right away. I was past worrying about what others would think. I didn’t care about the stereotypes. People who didn’t fully understand the situation would say something that I knew wasn’t right for our situation and it didn’t get me down. They just didn’t know. I did exactly what was best for us at that time. My son improved dramatically within just a couple of weeks of starting medication even though the doctor said it could be up to a year before any improvements were noticeable. How wonderful that he began getting help at a young age rather than struggle through years of depression & anxiety before finding the help he needed. These doctors visits forced him to have to verbalized his feelings. We have had some good discussions as a family as well. I feel like God has definitely walked and is walking us through those valleys. He has guided our steps. I know He is doing the very same for you.

    I applaud you for searching for ways to help your son. You know best, especially as the Lord leads you. I am able to look back on the past several years and I’m so thankful for the Lord’s faithfulness & guidance. If you ever want to talk on the phone at greater length, feel free to contact me through facebook & I can send you my phone #.

  3. Don’t feel defeated. Starting our daughter on ADHD medication was one of our best decisions as parents. She is happier and more herself than she has ever been. She has more friends and gets invited to more parties. She performs as well in school as her intelligence suggests she should and is proud of herself. She isn’t getting in trouble as much or being told she’s being “annoying” as often. And, our family life is much more peaceful. The medicine allows her to be the self she has always been capable of being. Don’t feel defeated… feel hopeful.

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