Over the past 25 years I have spoken to tens of thousands of parents struggling with the question of whether to give their child medication to treat their ADHD. In all that time I have never come across one parent who was thrilled at the thought of medicating their child. Most parents express doubt, concern and have countless questions. Some refuse outright to even consider medication as a treatment option even when their child is clearly struggling at home, in school and during social situations. I must confess that even with a background in psychiatric nursing I had to think about the decision and it took quite some time for my husband to come around to the idea.
I also think that second guessing yourself on the decision you made, for many years even decades, after the fact is quite common. I receive many calls from parents asking if I think that they are responsible for their child’s failure at school and work because they refused to try medication when the child was younger. Or, they ask if it is what caused their child's involvement with the law and/or with self-medicating with substances. No one can answer these questions nor should they try. When asked, I steer parents away from the past and towards the present and future. What can and should be done now to set up the best individualized, balanced, multi-modal treatment approach possible. It may include medication, or it may not, but it should always be more than just medication. On the other hand, I also receive calls from adults who never received medication as a child, have been able to weather the storms, and have come out stronger because of it.
So it was with great interest and delight that I watched a YouTube video by Jessica McCabe, a young actress, writer and YouTube personality with ADHD. The video is captioned “To My Mom who Drugged Me”. Don’t be alarmed by the title, you’ll be wonderfully surprised by the message Jessica shares. While she addresses the topic of medication in the video she shares so much more. She expresses how she felt as a child with ADHD, what her mother’s understanding and support meant to her, and the profound difference it made in her life.
Watch the VIDEO
Access an ARTICLE on the video
Access Jessica’s web site How To ADHD