My mom doesn't believe ADHD is real

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    • #83156

      So I was diagnosed (by a professional, may I add) with ADHD(inattentive subtype) a few days ago.
      My mom, however, simply refuses to believe that it is real.
      She was a bit supportive in the beginning but I was diagnosed on a Saturday, and the next day, we had a bit of a family gathering thingy and my mom was just telling everyone about it and everybody was like “There’s no such thing as ADHD. He’s just a little immature.”.
      I mean, seriously!?
      Some of the people who said it have a medical background.
      Since then, however, she’s been like “I don’t know.”.
      She doesn’t believe it’s real. And I feel so heartbroken. What can I do?

    • #83157

      Hey @rahul29112002 ,

      First, your frustration is valid and real.

      You didn’t give your age and it’s not in your profile. No matter your age you deserve to be listened to and believed.

      There are two things I can think that might help:

      1. Start a paper log of your symptoms. Keep it short – date, time, symptoms. Ask your mother to help with it. She might notice somethings you miss. Patient’s home logs are a valid medical tool. Many people with high blood pressure and/or diabetes keep a home log to help their doctor know what’s happening.

      2. Ask your mother to take you for a 2nd opinion from another doctor. In your post you mention three people, yourself, your mother and the medical professional that diagnosed you (as well as a gathering of family members). The main people who seem to be having a disagreement on what to do are you, your mother and the doctor (although you said medical professional). So, a 2nd opinion from a different doctor would balance out the dynamics.

      Mostly, remember this – you’ve obviously been doing some work towards finding a solution to your problems. All of that work didn’t happen instantly, it took time, persuasion, self education and most likely a bit of “stick to it-ness”. So, if it takes a few more weeks to either for you and your mother to come to a meeting of your minds, that’s not really so bad.

      Lastly, your mother might be concerned about the adverse effects of any medication your put on. That is a legitimate concern on her part – some of the adverse effects might last a lifetime.

    • #83278


      Unfortunately there will always be people who don’t believe that what someone else experiences can be legitimate medical conditions. ADHD, in all its forms have been proven time and time again. Any medical professional who doesn’t believe it exists, either hasn’t seen the research or is choosing not to believe the abundance of evidence. Even in the medical profession there are those practitioners who make errors in judgement. It doesn’t make them bad people just incorrect in their analysis.

      As for your mother, ask her to read “Driven to Distraction” by Edward Hallowell, M.D. In it he addresses those very issues and gives numerous examples of why those assumptions are incorrect. In fact, it would be a good book for both of you to read. There are many reasons that some parents refuse to (or take a long time to) accept an ADHD diagnosis. It doesn’t mean that they don’t believe you, or are not taking the issue seriously. For a parent there are a who lot of “Did I do something wrong?” type of emotions that they need to address as well as dealing with your actual diagnosis. She will most likely come around once she understands that it isn’t something she did wrong, or something she didn’t do.

      In the mean time, keep talking about it and do as much research on the subject as you can. This is a perfect place to do some of that research.

      Good luck, and keep your chin up.

    • #83325
      Penny Williams

      Rarely can you change the mind of someone who refuses the change. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t educate those that play a big role in your life. Rather, it’s a warning that it may not do any good.

      Here’s an outline of a great conversation to educate non-believers:

      Enlightening an ADHD Non-Believer

      ADDitude Community Moderator, Parenting ADHD Trainer & Author, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

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