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Monday, September 04, 2006

My Star Kyle. (Life with ADHD) Part Three

At the age of 4, Kyle started mainstream school. The teachers were as patient as they could be with him, and made sure that whenever they went on trips one of them ALWAYS held his hand. They learnt that from an episode when they lost him. He'd just done his normal thing and wandered off.

Kyle could never sit still in school, and he just couldn't concentrate on anything for more than a couple of minutes at a time. When he was almost 5, we moved to a different town and he changed schools. I took him to the doctors and they told me he was definitely hyperactive.

I took all sweets, e-colours and additives out of his diet and he calmed down a bit. But that was when I noticed that there was something else not quite as it should be. He was calmer, but he had no attention span to speak of, and his concentration levels were almost nil.

The teachers had a helluva time with him, and he had a rotten time with them. I kept telling them that there was something not quite 'connecting' with Kyle, but they wouldn't listen. It was always put down to 'normal' hyperactivity.

Kyle had always been fascinated with flames and fire, and we always had to hide any lighters we had. When he was almost 6 he managed to find one, and at 11pm one night, I could smell smoke. I ran up the stairs to find that he'd burnt a hole in his mattress, his chair, his duvet AND his pillow. That was when I finally broke down. I held him close and wept my heart out.

Kyle cuddled me back, but seemed so totally adjacent. As if he wasn't really feeling that I was upset. He watched TV as he cuddled me, while I was sobbing and hulking.

I knew then that something was definitely wrong. I'd noticed his lack of 'feelings' before, but not as clearly as this. I asked him why he'd done it, why he did things like this all of the time. His reply was; 'The words aren't typing right in my head.'!!

I took him to the doctors the next day and begged for a referral to see a specialist. The doctor turned around and told me it was a discipline issue! I explained, as nicely as I could, that I had 3 other children and Kyle was 'different'. At the age of 6, a lot of the things he did were still 2-year-old things, yet other things were 10-year-old things.

The doctor blew me off totally. I felt as if I was a criminal for even suggesting that there was something not quite connecting in Kyle's head. Even when I aired my suspicions with my mother, I got the same reaction. It was all in my head and it was all my fault. There was nothing wrong with Kyle that a little (or a lot of) discipline wouldn’t sort out.

Believe me, we had tried everything. Rewards, discipline, positive attitudes, ignoring the bad things. None of it worked. And life carried on just as difficult as it always had been. The older kids stopped bringing their friends to the house as Kyle would often get physically violent with them. The house was a total wreck. All our furniture was trashed. We had holes punched in walls, doors slammed and screams echoing throughout the day and night.


luckily for me damien was never physically violent, but the tantrums and screaming was there. i also had a helluva time when he started school, at first i didn't want to listen- i was afraid of looking like a failure because i am a solo act... but after a few months i had to face up to that fact that he had a problem. he was 6...
i was also getting the discipline lectures from everyone and their dog!
It seems to be much harder for us to ask for help when we are alone. It's like we don't want anybody to think we can't handle things ourselves, or at the very least think we're totally nuts. I was a single parent for most of the time with all 4 of mine, so I know what you mean there. I was also constantly fighting with myself about whether I was to blame or not...
the problem that im having with my 12yr old that has ADHD is that she has an attitude problem and can be mean to her sister as well. im just wondering what i can do to get that under control with her
I really appreciate the blog since the first time do I saw it. Now they have reached another milestone which lead us to report about it, and I think it's a great new... as the content of the text.
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