Day dreaming or ADD

Why this parent advice topic

This post continues the series  “Getting along in school.”  The previous posts have looked at temperament, goodness of fit, the three major learning disabilities – Dyslexia, Dyscalulia, and Disgraphia; the most recent post, looked at Attention Deficit Disorder or ADD with a focus on hyperactivity.  Considered more as a behavior problem than a learning disability, hyperactivity definitely creates school problems.  Now the focus shifts to ADD without hyperactivity which also creates school problems, not ones that are always noticed.

Distracted by boredom and inner thoughts.

While Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is over diagnosed, Attention Deficit is under-diagnosed.  Why? The child’s behavior tends not to annoy most adults, teachers in particular.

Here is a symptom check list for ADD:

  •  Often does not give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, work, or other activities.
  • Often has trouble keeping attention on tasks or play activities.
  • Often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly.
  • Often does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork, chores, or duties in the workplace (not due to oppositional behavior or failure to understand instructions).
  • Often has trouble organizing activities.
  • Often avoids, dislikes, or doesn’t want to do things that take a lot of mental effort for a long period of time (such as schoolwork or homework).
  • Often loses things needed for tasks and activities (e.g. toys, school assignments, pencils, books, or tools).
  • Is often easily distracted.
  • Is often forgetful in daily activities.

The first hint that I might have a tendency toward ADD came from  quote that I believe I read in Halloway and Ratey’s book Driven to Distraction.  A golden oldie that should be required reading for all teachers and most parents.

Here’s the quote, “Always organizing, never organized.”

Never checked out to see how many of the symptoms I had.  Did so now.  As my mother always said, “God blessed you when he sewed your head to your neck.”

Yes, I lose things constantly.  Which reminds me, I am hoping my cell phone is in our car, but first I have to figure out where I put my car keys.  Sigh.  Found the car keys but not the cell phone.  Haven’t give up, but feeling it may be gone for good.  Life goes on.  Anyway, I don’t fully qualify for the diagnosis.

To be officially diagnosed one must have at least six of the symptoms.  I have three. Moreover, the symptoms must be seen in at least two different settings – home and school; home and church.  Well, I seem to take them everywhere I go.  However, the symptoms must interfere with the ability to do what needs to be done.  I am highly productive.  Annoyed and frustrated because of my various challenges, but productive nevertheless.  Finally, the distractablity  must not be due to another major mental disorder.  Trauma is a big culprit here.  More about in a future post.

Parent advice

Parent tip number one:  If you have not read, all of my posts about trouble in school, read them. The tips all apply.

Parent tip number two:  Program, program, program. This is a good tip for most of us.  Possibly not the obsessive compulsive who may be over organized.  By program, I mean instill things like:  A place for everything and every thing in its place.  My soon to be three year old grandson knows were his toys go and what happens if they don’t go there.

Parent tip number three: Routines. A time and season for everything meaning designated free time, me time, play time, T.V time, work time, study time, family time.

Parent tip number four: Check lists.

Parent tip number five: Guard your child’s self-esteem.  Promote what matters.  What matters? Kindness, caring, generosity  working for peace.  Moreover, those three things require no special talents, no huge pocket-book.  You star in your life when you seek to leave your corner of the world better than you found it.

Stay strong

Life is a struggle, full of pain and suffering. Parenting intensifies the struggle, but also brings more joy to your life.


Disclaimer: Forgive my grammatical errors for I have dysgraphia.

if you need perfect posts, you will not find them  here;  I will understand if you don’t follow me.  If  you want to hang in with me, thank you; if a post doesn’t make sense or bugs you but you want to keep reading try again in a few days   Often I catch the worse mistakes when I read the post after a few days.

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