ADHD

Question
Posted by: Dana Harmzen | 2009/11/09

Q.

IMPOSSIBLE BEHAVIOUR

I’ ve got a 6 year old daughter who has been diagnosed with ADHD approximately two years ago. She is on 10mg Ritalin since May this year. Before I put her on Ritalin, she was on Sportrons’  Melatone for about a year. However, it did not help her to concentrate at all. Now with the Ritalin, she is much calmer at school and not so disruptive.

However, at home she is impossible to control. She throws tantrums, is totally disobedient, rude to my mother (who we live with) Perhaps I should mention that her father is an absent father. She refuses to obey me and ignores me when I give her orders or try to discipline her. Giving her a hiding does not help. Time out is not an option, as she refuses to stay where I put her. I’ ve tried it several times and I’ ve never succeeded in getting her to stay where I put her. Taking away her privileges does not help either. SO WHAT SHOULD I DO? Our house is a constant battlefield. I hate going home in the evenings after work and dread weekends. I try to stay calm and handle the situation with love and compassion, but please believe me, sometimes it’ s impossible as she drives me so far I totally loose control. I love her very much and will do anything for her, but sometimes I feel like just getting out and leaving her behind. (Obviously I would not do that) She refuses to give me “ me time”  She constantly wants me around. I can perhaps understand that, as her father (who is an alcoholic) has let her down so many times and she is looking for security. The more we sometimes tell her to be quiet as we are listening to something, the louder she talks. It’ s like she’ s doing it on purpose to test us and make us angry.

She is currently going to a occupational therapist once a week and she is happy with her progress. I don’ t really get feedback form the school (Grade R) but as far as I know the teacher is satisfied with her.

I really need your help here, as I honestly don’ t know what to do anymore.

Expert's Reply

A.

ADHD Expert

Dear Dana,<br/>There are two possibilities for the cause of your daughter's behaviour: either she would benefit from a longer lasting medication such as Stratter or breaking up her Ritalin dosage (please speak to your doctor before altering anything); or she is after your attention, regardless of it being negative or positive.

If the latter is the case, praising good behaviour (over the top if necessary) with lots of hugs or verbal praise or both depending on your child's needs, and completely ignoring negative behaviour. It will be difficult for a time but she will soon realise that to get mom's attention she should behave positively.

It is important to explain very clearly but simply what constitutes good behaviour - some children cannot infer at a young age what is good or not good.
Best wishes.

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C.

Posted by: ADD/ADHD Expert | 2009/11/11

Dear Dana,<br/>There are two possibilities for the cause of your daughter's behaviour: either she would benefit from a longer lasting medication such as Stratter or breaking up her Ritalin dosage (please speak to your doctor before altering anything); or she is after your attention, regardless of it being negative or positive.

If the latter is the case, praising good behaviour (over the top if necessary) with lots of hugs or verbal praise or both depending on your child's needs, and completely ignoring negative behaviour. It will be difficult for a time but she will soon realise that to get mom's attention she should behave positively.

It is important to explain very clearly but simply what constitutes good behaviour - some children cannot infer at a young age what is good or not good.
Best wishes.

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