Reply To: Frustrated, sad, depressed

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Allison Russo

This reply was originally posted by user Pump2Duncan in ADDitude’s now-retired community.

1) The 504 Plan … yeah it can take awhile. Be the squeaky wheel and know your child’s rights. Research, research, RESEARCH! I was emailing daily! Come aimed with your own recommendations for suggestions too. Don’t just let the teachers tell you what they can do for your child. If something works at home, try implementing that in the classroom setting.

2) My son did “play” therapy. The initial meeting was just with me to discuss my concerns and thoughts. Then the therapist met with my son and they played. I thought the technique was stupid at first. Because seriously, how can drawing a picture or playing with legos really help? But it did.

For example, one session the therapist built a home out of legos. My son immediately destroyed it. And the therapist acted sad and hurt about her destroyed home. And then asked “how do you think your action made me feel?” My son replied “ummm I don’t know”. Couple sessions later he did it again, she made the same face, but this time he helped put it back together and see acted happy. Couple more sessions and instead of destroying her creation, he started working with her to make it better.

He also had an eating issue, a sub-issue of an anxiety disorder which caused him to feel sick a lot of the time. Because of his age, he associated the sick feeling with whatever he ate right before feeling sick. Which quickly eliminated 3/4ths of food from his deit.

So she drew pictures of a panda and asked “can the panda have some fruit? He’s pretty hungry”. And my son would answer “no, the Panda doesn’t like fruit, it makes him sick”. So she’d draw the Panda “hungry”. After a few sessions, the Panda was eating everything and the panda was happy. Oddly enough, soon after the Panda would try some new food, my son would eat that food when it was presented to him at home. Only thing the Panda would never eat was mashed potatoes, my son still HATES mashed potatoes…LOL.

We took those steps from age 5-8, and then did start him on medication at age 8. He’s on Concerta. Our pediatrician really knows her stuff when it comes to ADHD medications. You might try talking to your pediatrician about the metabolism issue to see if there is something that can be done. I prefer talking to my pediatrician about the medication because she knows the full history and underlying physical issues my son has as well as the ADHD and she’s able to develop a more full-bodied solution.