Sunday, December 22, 2013

My continued annoyance

I'm still irked at the last Times story. (I know, C. I know.) Just once I'd like a major news outlet to report some aspect of ADHD other than, it's overdiagnosed and kids are drugged-out zombies. It amazes me that the Times is only capable of finding 1. now-grown kids who say they were wrongly diagnosed or 2. parents of now-grown kids who say they were wrongly diagnosed, as opposed to, say, someone who was correctly diagnosed, benefited from the diagnosis and even benefited from the medication. But that wouldn't fit the reporter's predetermined narrative, I think.

I would also like to think that the whole process of diagnosing and treating kids has changed in the last 20-30 years or so -- being that there's more potential for physical evidence of it (hence the federal approval of this brain wave test), and more awareness of the disorder generally (in that no one is calling it minimal brain dysfunction anymore). So why the Times is insisting on solely reporting about cases 20-30 years ago is beyond me. Kids and adults are dealing with it now. Maybe the Times would like to pay attention to that? Or is that too much of a ... distraction?

I love my son, but I don't always love the cascading series of meltdowns over being asked to get dressed, brush his teeth, put his shoes on, put his coat on, get his backpack, walk in the direction of the door, every day, when the idea of doing any sort of routine thing ever clearly hurts his brain so much he'd rather hide under the couch cushions. I could probably do without his being the only kid in the entire restaurant to wear his cloth napkin on his head. (OK, admittedly a little funny.) And I'd kind of like it if he could get through one lunch period at school without getting too overstimulated and goofy, and getting in other kids' faces and roughhousing too much, because a crowded, noisy, unstructured cafeteria is going to ping his hyperactivity/sensory issues/social skills issues. And yet kiddo's story isn't anywhere to be found in the Times, and I think if the Times is going to continue to rant about ADHD that they should make sure to tell all the stories.

Incidentally, since I was mainly doing a little flamethrowing last week (admittedly something I enjoy), here are two other responses to the Times article that are better than mine: One from ADDitude magazine and the other from the Child Mind Institute.

And now I swear to quit snarking on the Times until after Christmas. That's only three days, you say. It still counts, I say.

Kiddo has been pretty consistently demanding a "bomb gun," i.e. a gun that shoots some sort of harmless ball things, which he's wanted ever since seeing one at a friend's house on a play date. So, serves me right for giving him a social life. I'm not wild about toy guns. I don't feel like guns should be used for play. And if you think I'm overthinking it ... well, you must not watch the news much.

But. being still new to this Santa business, I felt I was in a conundrum. Does Santa ever say no? Does he ever not bring a kid the specific thing the kid asked for, on moral grounds? And if kiddette gets the thing she asked for (a purple cat, in case you were wondering, and I'm not sure why she thinks the entire world should come in purple, but at least it's not pink), how is kiddo supposed to feel if he doesn't?

I finally told him that Santa and I talked about it, and that if Santa were to bring him one, he would have to promise never to point it at any person, ever, or he would lose it. I don't know if that's the right solution. I do know I'm holding him to that promise.  And I hope that that's good enough.

Man this Santa thing is complicated. It's like another layer of bureaucracy to think about.

At any rate, Merry Everything, and may your holidays be lovely and may you continue to be full of wonder at the world around you, like kiddette, who today discovered that she really, really likes carrot cake.


  1. Santa was my only concession to my family. If it were up to me( which I know it is but I also know that our kids are my parents only grandchildren) I would have not brainwashed Peter and James with Santa. It's a lie. it's a fun lie but it's still a lie. Peter wanted a puppy from Santa, but we said NO. Santa does not give alive things. Only toys. I feel like I am fucking doomed with the toy guns. James builds them out of Bristle Blocks. WTF. Peter talks about them sometimes and I told him that we don't use them. And then in a moment of absolute GLEE I told him that only people who are not smart enough to solve their own problems use a real gun. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHH SUCK MY BALLS NRA. It's hard when they are everywhere. Those things are 100% forbidden here, including water guns. And yet they still build them out of legos sometimes. I don't think giving him one is a wrong choice. It's not like you bought him Call of Duty, and if he uses it the way you say then YEEHA awesome. And if he doesn't, teachable moooooment for kiddo. It's a win win to help you clarify what you want to do as he gets older.

    1. I dunno, I still think the Parents' Conspiracy of Santa is kind of sweet. I would've loved that sort of backup when I believed in unicorns as a kid.

      Also, tell Peter superheroes don't use guns. Although they do use Batarangs and invisible jets and X-ray vision.

      I still don't love my choice but I'm willing to give kiddo the chance to prove me wrong. I guess that's something.

    2. James is addicted to television now. I hate compromise. I think he is going to get a Mister Rodgers tat.