Having grown up with undiagnosed Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), I know how it feels to be labeled "lazy" when you're really just fighting ADHD and doing the best you can to fit your ADHD square peg into the round hole of life.
I remember, as an ADD child, deciding I wouldn't write my spelling words five times. I just didn't want to do it. To a kid with ADHD, that kind of work is just torture, and I quit doing it.
I remember that ADHD experience because I failed sixth grade spelling, though I went to the spelling bee as champion for my class.
I remember how painful it was when my parents, who'd never heard of ADHD, called me lazy--and meant it
I know how it feels to be the kid with ADHD.
But I accused my ADHD son of laziness recently for not doing his work at school. Even though I know about ADHD. Even though I know what it's like. I forgot.
How much harder it must be for parents who don't understand ADHD and don't know what to do about their child's learning problems.
What I want to say to all parents is this:
You know your child. You know whether he's being lazy or really struggling. You may not know why. You may not have an ADHD diagnosis to fall back on. You may not be an expert on ADHD or parenting. But you know your kid and you love him.
Remember that, and seek out people who do know and who can help.
It's frustrating and even infuriating to see a kid we know is bright not living up to his potential. But think about how frustrating it must be to the child, to know he's doing everything he knows how to do and just isn't making it.
So think about that the next time your child seems to be "slacking off," and investigate whether there might be something going on related to his ADHD, if he's been diagnosed, or whether he might have ADHD, if he hasn't, and whether you should talk to a qualified professional about your son's difficulties.
Angie Dixon is a writer and ADHD mom of an ADHD son, Jack. For a free report on helping your ADHD son, see Angie's site "That's My Son!" at http://www.Raising-the-ADHD-boy.com