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Talking to Your Teen About the ADHD Diagnosis
"My 14-year-old has been diagnosed with ADHD and LD. He seems to believe that, if he doesn’t acknowledge them, his problems will just go away, but he’s nearly failing out of school. How can I get through to him?"
Many ADHD teens find being different so painful and so unacceptable to their friends that they deny any problems, even at the price of causing themselves greater difficulty. And because teens are asserting independence from parents, many are more willing to open up to a third party. If you’ve already tried talking and your son won’t listen, I’d suggest finding a therapist who specializes in adolescents with attention deficit. With good counseling, your son should come to see what his problems are in time. Until he does, make sure he knows you’re going to stand by him as a support.
Larry Silver, M.D., is the author of Dr. Larry Silver's Advice to Parents on AD/HD and The Misunderstood Child: Understanding and Coping with Your Child's Learning Disabilities. He is also a clinical professor of psychiatry at Georgetown Medical Center in Washington, D.C.