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Q: My Oppositional Tween Refuses His ADHD Medication!

A child with ADHD who is also oppositional and defiant may refuse to take his ADHD medication. Without treatment, his behavior will only worsen and tear apart the family. But how can a parent effectively enforce treatment rules when the adolescent is verbally and physically abusive?

1 Comment: Q: My Oppositional Tween Refuses His ADHD Medication!

  1. I have a son with ADHD who at various points refused medication. It’s very hard to force a 12-year-old to take medication. But what I found worked was asking him his concerns about the medication. For example, as he got to be a teenager he became more embarrassed about having to go to the nurse’s office to take his second dose of medication. We were able to change to a long acting dose so he only had to take one in the morning before school. It’s so important at this age to get their buy-in to taking it. That happens best when they are more self-aware and understanding about its benefits. I found that by showing a lot of empathy and a true willingness to listen to his concerns, he became much more invested and willing to take it. There is a great book by Dr. Ross Greene called the Explosive Child which was very instrumental in helping me understand how to approach these and other issues.

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