Monday, May 11, 2015

ADD/ADHD: Help for Kids and Families

See my other blogs about: class-size issues, issues with measuring teachers, etc.
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With special thanks to my wife Kristin, who hunted down the sites.

ADD/ADHD is perhaps the most over diagnosed, most misunderstood, and worst named “disorder” that kids, parents, and teachers can face.

It is often over diagnosed because ADD/ADHD’s most obvious and outward characteristic (seeming distracted or forgetful) often occurs for many reasons other than a child having ADD/ADHD. And ADD/ADHD is often misdiagnosed because it can express itself very differently in different people.  ADD/ADHD is also is very often misunderstood because people often think that distractibility is the primary issue; however, attention issues are only one outward symptom of a complex set of cognitive characteristics; the brain of a person who is ADD/ADHD actually works differently than the norm—a difference that does not always integrate well with the way contemporary America thinks, educates, and lives. And, lastly, ADD/ADHD is horribly named because the name misleads people into thinking that attention deficit is the issue that must be resolved when deficits in attention are a comparatively minor characteristic of a much more complex situation—a situation that an ADD/ADHD person (and their families) will have to manage for a lifetime.  A further thought: ADD/ADHD often co-occurs with one or more other issues such as anxiety, depression, learning disabilities, sensory issues, chemical dependency and even Tourette’s Syndrome, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, and Conduct Disorders.

Many people who misunderstand ADD/ADHD roll their eyes at what they perceive as an imaginary issue.  Conversely, many people who have (shall we say) unruly, disorganized, or distracted children often want to attribute those behaviors to ADD/ADHD rather than poor behavior.  But, kids who are genuinely ADD/ADHD and their families know the complexity and frustration of the situation that they have on their hands.

Below are a number of resources—from the celebratory to the hilarious to the helpful to the clinical-- that can provide information about ADD/ADHD; the links also offer help for affected kids and parents.


If a Facebook user, it is helpful to "Like" and follow on Facebook the ADDitude site.

ADHD Parent Group

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