Your son’s ADHD is your fault!

I am currently filling out forms for one of my sons to get some extra educational help in school. It’s an intake form that helps the local education authority understand the child, and the household dynamic etc.

I understand that they need a full view of the child and his surroundings and his background in order to adequately assess his specific situation.

However, and I have got bent out of shape on this on many occasions, it burns me that they asked details about the pregnancy and delivery. Did you take drugs when pregnant? Was it a normal delivery? Surprised they don’t ask his APGAR scores which were 9 9 9 ! Am I just being too touchy? Does the pregnancy years and years ago impact the issues a child has now? I had 4 almost identical pregnancies, but only one child is ADHD. Did I drink too much caffeine in that pregnancy (or not enough) or was it just pre-destined anyway for him to be the way he is?

Why do I get so defensive? Why do I feel like I am being judged for his issues? Why do I let a questionnaire tick me off so very much?

14 responses to “Your son’s ADHD is your fault!

  1. lady lock and load

    Don’t take it personally, they ask those questions so they can do research on ADHD, which helps your son and others who have ADHD in the future. Not blaming you at all.

  2. We don’t know much about ADHD, and I would think such a time when one has to fill out mandated forms would be a great time (from their perspective) to try and gather data for correlations and future studies.

    We do know it is genetic, however, so maybe it is your fault. ; )

    My family is riddled with it, and very proudly so. So maybe you should take “credit” instead? Most innovators and super successful entrepreneurs throughout history and the world have had it. I think you should be very proud to have an out-of-the-box thinker who will take on the world, and very grateful to live in an age (and country) that recognizes it and provides resources.

    For several generations, many ADHD kids were simply refused a Yeshiva education. As frustrating as it always is to work with “the system”, we are actually very blessed.

  3. The questions are so they can take a large number of such questionnaires to produce statistics and see if any correlation exists. It’s solely to help the researchers and is nothing personal.

  4. These questions are designed to diagnose and encompass a huge range of issues – everything from kids who were born to drug addicted mothers and that now affects their abilities to kids who were born completely normal and just happen to have ADHD. You wouldn’t think so, but the pregnancy years ago can have an affect. For the record though, those questions apply less to you than to people who had premies or mothers who were on drugs. That’s who that’s directed at. These forms are used for everyone. It’s a standard form.

    Really what it comes down to, and I say this as a special education teacher, is that we don’t know what information might be valuable, so we collect as much as we possibly can to get the most complete picture of your child. That allows us to help them as much as possible. If you have any other questions or concerns, feel free to ask me. I can’t provide the perspective of a mother, but I can provide the perspective and experience of a Special Education teacher. I’ll be glad to help!

  5. The form that she’s asking about isn’t for research on ADHD. It’s how we collect information to write either a 504 Plan or IEP (Individualized Education Plan). Since Special Ed. covers so many different things, from severe mental retardation to ADD, the forms tend to be all encompassing rather than less.

    • It’s not specifically for research. The researchers collect the information in the aggregate (with names/addresses deleted) after the fact. It’s not anywhere near perfect data, but it’s the best they can get short of following (with periodic questionnaires like they did with the big heart health research project a few years ago) a few hundred thousand kids from conception through adulthood.

  6. When I was teaching in public school, so many of our special education students and had ADHD had done drugs. I remember hearing people say that it was just kids whose parents let them watch too much TV or did not spank them enough. But I had experienced one if not the other and my sisters and I didn’t have it. I went in to teaching not believing in ADD and ADHD and it was eye-opening. Now I have so many friends and family who have been diagnosed.

  7. First, there are all sorts of symptoms labeled as ADHD.
    ADHD really is a talent. I’m serious. The fact that schools have created situations that bring out the worst is the problem. There are all sorts of professions, important ones, for which ADHD is a requirement.

  8. If you think it’s intrusive, try dealing with the some of the frustrations that can accompany adopting. I don’t know about all those factors, and I’ve had forms that were written as if an adoptive parent was not really the parent at all, but more like a guardian. Those really annoy!

  9. Eleanor Roosevelt has been quoted as saying: “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”. Genetics, birth history not withstanding, this is your child, you love him and you just want to get him what he needs. I have filled in similar questionnaires with my ow annoyance. The real question is: “How will this help you help my child to learn?” You can answer their questions but advocate for yourself and your child to help him best be accommodated for his challenges and learning needs.I hope you know you know you are not alone in your indignation and fortunately that will serve your son ever better as you can think clearly and advocate on his behalf.
    Stay strong.

  10. R’ Freundlich is very helpful w/add kids

  11. We all hope you’re feeling better. There r no post from u today.

  12. I suppose they want to check wether it could be fetal alcohol syndrome or something like this, or differentiate adhd from fas…

  13. Speaking not as an educator or specialist, I recently had to fill in some similar forms for an IEP. I would think that the questions about the pregnancy/delivery would somehow correlate to the maturity or development of the child. Of course it may not be as relevant 15 years later, but since these forms are also probably also used for early childhood intervention it is more relevant at an earlier stage especially since preemies do have a developmental par to “catch up”.

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