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A Boy with ADHD, Mom's Tired of Yelling

If anyone could help me, I will listen and take any pointers. My son was finely diagnosed with ADHD. He is 6 1/2 years old. It's been a very long process to finally get where we are at. He is still being tested at school, man that's along process. But I myself don’t know what to do, I'm pulling my hair out. I yell all the time, I'm just so fed up with him. It's hard for me to be around him sometimes. I'm trying so hard not to have him put on any medication at this time. My husband just doesn't understand. Please if anyone has any information or ideas let me know. Very concerned mom.

2 moms found this helpful

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I have a child with ADHD and tried just about everything. The doctors put him on meds at 4. I agreed since they told me he needed it or his develpmental delays would get worse. I asked about diet and they said it was not proven. Well... he didn't do better but actually fell off the charts with weight and growth. I took him off the meds and tried the feingold diet. That works for him. I find if I keep him 100% organic and no salicilates then life is good. The diet is hard in the beginning but so worth it for us. We have been doing it for 3 years now. Life is still not a peice of cake but much easier. My husband was a skeptic at first until he gave him something we wasn't suppose to have. He went crazy within 5 minutes.

my older son is now 7 1/2, he was diagnosed adhd in kindergarden. i fought for 2 years not to medicate him but after much research and talking to my inlaws (nephews are also adhd)we put him on meds. it has taken 3 years to find the "perfect" med. this along with diet changes, and his school, he has become a much happier and easier to deal with boy. he has his moments of adhd stuff, but is is a lot better than it was. he told us he feels better and can do better in school. i also read ADDITUDE magazine. good luck.
M. silver

Hi N.,
Change his diet. No suger or simple carbs. Lots of protein, fresh fruits & veggies. This has kept my niece off meds for her ADHD.

More Answers

Dear N.,
First of all, you have my empathy. I have taught children with ADHD for fourteen years. I know how much energy they require, and, I am only with them for about six hours a day!
Rather than advice...here are some things for you to think about:
If your son was diabetic, would you give him insulin if it meant he could live normally?
If your son was asthmatic, would you give him an inhaled steroid if it meant he could breathe easier?
If there were a medicine that could stop the manic rush of chemicals that are flooding your son's brain, that even he wishes he could probably stop, would you give it to him if it meant he would be better equipped to cope with life?
I sense that you do not feel good about yelling at your son. Believe me, even if he doesn't show it, he doesn't feel good about it, either. Children with ADHD often have exremely low self-esteem due to the fact that most of the people in their lives are often annoyed with them and basically exhausted by trying to keep up with them.
Have you found the yelling to be effective?
Does it make either of you feel better?
After you have answered the above questions, it will help you to make the decision to continue yelling or practice great restraint and stop it. You may even want to go to the opposite extreme and whisper to your son when you are at your wit's end with him. I have used that practice both as a mother and educator and I have found it to be a much more effective means of getting a child to listen to me, especially a very energetic one.
I wish you well. If you decide to try medication, I have seen it be effective and non-effective and would be happy to help you navigate that path!

2 moms found this helpful

My son had ADHD and he is now 43 year old. In those days they did not diagnose anything so I was on my own and refused to give him Ridalin, which at that time was the only alternative offered to me.

There is a center here in the Chicagoland area that will work with these kids and help there bodies to calm down, naturally. Email me privately and I will give it to you: ____@____.com

Here is what I did with the help of a friend who recognized what was going on with my son.

1. I cleaned out the whole house, and I mean the whole house of all foods that were processed and had refine sugar. I filled two outdoor garbage cans with food.

2. Went to a local organic store and bought all fresh food. Even baked my own bread. Did not know about gluten at the time. Switched to organic foods as much as possible.

3. Get rid of all gluten products. Become a gluten free household.

4. Striped by son's room of all toys and clutter and painted his room light blue - read that blue was calming and clutter was stimulated to these types of kids. Even his window treatments were switched to plain white blinds. All his toys and books were put into a playroom that I created in another part of the house. If he has a computer in his room I would remove that also.

5. Changed my behavior. This is a big one. If you had a child who physically could not walk would you yell at him for not being able to walk? Your child is doing the best he can with whatever is going on in his body. When you change he will calm down somewhat. Your agitation is not helping the situation.

6. I went to his school and insisted upon two things.
a. That they do not give him sugared treats. I provided alternatives. I also gave him a lunch every day. That did not stop him from switching foods once in a while with his buddies. He was advised not to do it, but I could not control everything. The school called me the "health food nut" and I did not care.

b. That they provide an outlet for his "energy". We paid thru the nose for a private school so that we would have some control. He went to a lab school where there were lots of college students to call to help. He would go outside and shoot baskets once in the morning or afternoon. He was grouped with a couple of other boys to do a special assignment that took him out of the room = they interviewed people, they did research, they went on nature walks. He was allowed to walk around the room every hour as long as he did not disturb anyone else.

7. When he came home from school he was outside playing and running off his energy until dinner and he would do the same until dark. We had no expectations of him to do his homework until after dinner. And when he was done with dinner he was not expected to sit at the table. We really lowered our expectation as far as him sitting still for any length of time anywhere.

I think this is a story that will help you and it really happened: One beautiful summer afternoon my parents came over for dinner. My son really loved my parents. After he was done eating I suggested he stayed in for a while and visited with his grandparents. Aggetated he jumped up on a counter that we had that acted as a divider between the kitchen and dining room and said, "Mom, you know I can't sit that long. I need to go out and play." He was 9 years old.

Boy did it hit me what my son was all about and what he needed. And of course he went out and played.

I know it is harder now because most parents do not allow their kids outside without their presence, but you will find a way.

Good luck,

1 mom found this helpful

I also have a boy with ADHD....I completely understand your frustration.....my boy is 9 and we have battled since he was 2-3.....it is an exhausting lifestyle!! My boy did have to go on meds....and I can say it did help.....we can tell a distinct difference when he is on them and when he is not!! But you can try fish oil tablets which is a "proven" natural way to curb ADHD symptoms. My Dr. said you have a 50/50 chance it will help....my girlfriend (boy is older--14) took her son of prescribed meds and put him strictly on fish oil....happy with her decision. Total Transformation is a series of CD's you can buy to help you parent a child with ADHD (maybe heard the commercials on radio) a little costly like $400.00, but can pay in payments, (or buy outright on E-bay for a little less) but it DOES HELP!! Go to totaltransformation.com and listen to the testimonials.....GREAT!! My best advice I've received is learn to parent a child with ADHD.....you parent them differently!! My 4 1/2 year old NEVER has to be yelled at....she is just more compliant....but my son.....EVERYTHING is a battle!! A book suggestion I received is...."How to behave so your children will too" by Sal Severe....several people recommended it and it is a great resource. Mainly it is learning to parent them....not changing them....you just have to parent differently.....let me know if you want some other tips I have gotten (from school....Dr's...counselors) otherwise GOOD LUCK!!!!! I understand being fed up!!

1 mom found this helpful

I'm not sure I understand...does your husband want your son on meds or not?

At this point you have to do SOMETHING. I am not a big believer in medicine, so I tend to agree with the posters who suggested a diet change. However, you and your family must be prepared for a RADICAL diet change. You can't do tiny pieces of it and expect visable results. Obviously the diet change is a lifestyle change for your entire family and is more energy-consuming than putting him on meds.

As for not wanting to put him on meds...why did you have him diagnosed? If you just wanted an "official" diagnosis of ADHD, then you've got it. I would imagine that you had him go through all of the testing so that you could help him. You cannot let ADHD be an excuse for bad behavior. You either change your parenting style, (dieting, parent behavior) put him on meds, or use the ADHD as an excuse for why he's not learning and behaving.

My sister, who has a son who can push her buttons like no tomorrow (he has quite a few problems) quotes Dr. Phil quite ofthen: "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and getting the same result." I get wanting to yell; I have a 7 year old boy and he drives me nuts sometimes! But if the yelling isn't working, then you've got to stop it for your sake and for his.

One other suggestion: Watch Supernanny! If your children aren't as "naughty" as the ones on the show, you'll feel better after watching it, and also you'll get some great ideas to incorporate into your lives.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

First "Stop Yelling"; as you already know this doesn't help him nor you. You need to seek help with care-givers that have experience with this same disorder; ask his doctor/nurse for referrals. Reading "between-the-lines", you refer to your son as "boy" and your daughter as daughter. You are quite upset with your "son's" problem, and I'm sure he feels your anger. I'm sure you love your son, otherwise you wouldn't be asking for help here.
I'm praying for your you and your family.
God Bless!

1 mom found this helpful

First, educate yourself about ADHD. The library is loaded with material on the topic. I myself always go to the childrens department first because they always have simple explanations. (read to your husband if he's willing to listen) Second, get help from your school. Ask the social worker and occupational therapist for tips on coping. These kids need lots of activity and what occupational therapists call "heavy work." Like carring a weighted backpack or pulling a plastic container filled with something. Nothing should be too heavy for a 6 year old to manage. And these kids usually LOVE to be helpers, so you can arrange to let him "help" by carrying something heavy to a neighbors or to the back yard "for Dad." You can try "wall push-ups" (just lean against a wall and push off).
Avoid sugery cereals and treats. Try sweet fruits/raisens instead and "cut" sweet fruit juices with water. No soda pop.
Lots of exercise, try exercise cd's or tapes for rainy days.
Give them lots of important jobs (like stacking magazines neatly, or even putting playing cards neatly back into the boxes.) Finally, getting very close to their face or ear and whispering is 10X more effective in communicating than volume.

1 mom found this helpful

I agree 100% with the effects of artificial dyes! I have 5 boys. My 6 year old is my one "with extra batteries" we like to say. My mom is a Special Ed teacher and even suggested medication. I started paying attention to when he was his behavior was at its worst, then I would look at what he had eaten that day. I found that red dye especially triggered CRAZINESS in him. Now I try to exclude it from all their diets. It is such a difference! I buy all dye free medicine...Tylenol, Benedryl, etc. The crazy thing is that if he needs a prescription, they all have dye in them! I can definitely see the hyper part come back within the hour of taking the medication...even when he is sick!!
He was in Kindergaten this year and did great! I always thought he would get kicked out of Kindergarten:) He was able to sit still and stayed on "green light" the whole year.
I would just start with the obviously dyes foods...the ones that leave his lips and toungue stained and go from there.
HE is still my kiddo with extra batteries, which is just his personality now. The difference is, he is in control of his personality.
Good Luck.

1 mom found this helpful


I didn't have time to read all the other posts here, but speaking as a mother who has raised a son with ADHD, why on earth would you NOT want to medicate him?

Here is what will happen (I am speaking from experience) if you do not medicate him: You can expect an ongoing and escalating pattern of behavioral problems from school and anyone else he is interacting with. As he becomes older he will begin to self-medicate (yes, street drugs and alcohol). And yes, you are going to yell, stomp your feet, pull out your hair - these kids are extremely difficult to deal with because they have absolutely no understanding (THEY ARE PHYSICALLY UNABLE TO COMPREHEND) cause and effect. In other words, he doesn't 'get' why he does what he does.

If you have a proper diagnosis (and it sounds like you do), why would you deprive him of a medication that will help him? Chances are, when he gets older he will think he can control himself without meds (and he might) as my son did, for awhile....and then it gets really bad, I'll spare you the details.

Please get him what he needs and do not listen to parents who do not have children with this disorder, they just don't understand.

Here is an excercise to help understand what it feels like to have ADHD:
1. Look around the room and notice everything brown for 10 seconds.
2. Now look only at your computer screen (don't cheat) and recall only everything red in the room. Frustrating? This is just a tiny fragment of what it feels like to have this disorder. (I learned this at a seminar).

It is your decision of course, and the meds do have side effect, but know that very soon (sooner than you'd like) he will be making decisions about his own body in an attempt to modify his behavior himself in order to fit in.

best of luck to you.


1 mom found this helpful

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