Child Behavior Forum
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Avatar universal

Needed Attention or Wanted Attention???

Hi, I have an 11 year old that I have adopted about 5 months ago, she has come from a very harsh background. She lost her mom at 5, saw her father rape a handicap child, and rejected from 2 home because she was "stupid" and "un-wanted". As far as behaviour issues, not a whole lot. what i am seeing is her forgetting homework, chores, daily tasks such as showers, etc. When I have a conversation with her she holds eye contact for a whole 2.5 sec. before she looks at anything else, and starts picking at her nails,etc. I am noticing alot of doodles on her papers in school. Teachers tell her she can do better. I am worried about going to a doctor cause she has been on about 30 diff. meds for Depression and stress disorder in the past. It made things worse, about 4 months ago the docter took her off and she has been doing great. she holds a low B average in school(with costant supervision & remindings) I feel if she is Wanting the attention then I will Spoil her by giving in. on the other hand I feel if she NEEDS the attention I will hurt her academically and emotionally if she doesnt get it. Last night I explained what ADD was, and she started to cry, said she did not want to be ADD because she was not "stupid". I beleive she is very smart, just needs to focus. Any tips or advice with no medications? I dont want her to feel like a failure or stupid but I dont want her to loose it and become depressed. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
5 Responses
242606 tn?1243786248
She may indeed have an attention deficit, but the most important goal is help her learn how to attend to her various tasks. Sure, if a child displays ADHD to a moderate or greater level of severity, meication can be an appropriate and useful tool. But, even with medicine, there are practical steps you can take to help her. One of the most useful is to rely on lists. She can have a self-care list and a list of chores, as well as a list of reminders about what she needs to bring with her to school and to bring home with her later on. You will find a wealth of information about non-pharmacological tactics to employ. Check, for example, the internet sites www.adhd.com and  http://www.nimh.nih.gov/publicat/adhd.cfm. A very comprehensive book intended for parents is Taking Charge of ADHD by Russell Barkley.
Avatar universal
Probably neither.  Really, until you know the problem, you can't find a solution.  Whether this child is ADD or not is redundant at this point.  Please seek out proper medical attention to get a correct diagnosis and then hopefully, proper treatment.  Attention (or lack thereof) cannot solve mental health issues (and this is what I think might be the problem).  And, if the treatment requires medication, so be it.  Good luck
159063 tn?1247276417
I have no answer to your question but KUDOS to you, that is such an undertaking you did by adopting an older child with all these problems,.you must be a special lady.. good luck to you.
Avatar universal
Thank you, I tend to think I am a kind hearted "guy" :-) Its okay I know its rarely heard of but I am trying to be the father she never had. :-) Thanks for your post. I will be making an app. next week for her.
159063 tn?1247276417
i am so sorry I didnt read the name and guess i just ASSUMED see what happens when you do that. is there a mother figure in the picture for this girl
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