Disorderly Conduct

It took years to discover the source of my son's behavior problems—ADHD.

Ross was born by emergency C-section. He came into the world grabbing our attention, and that's how he's conducted his life thus far. Even as a baby, Ross was extremely active and never seemed to need sleep. He's my firstborn, so I didn't realize his rambunctious personality was unusual—and a sign of things to come.

As Ross became a toddler, I became aware of his stubborn nature and his inability to focus on a task or to follow simple instructions. When I compared notes with other moms, they always assured me that if Ross had an attention problem, he wouldn't be able to focus on a television program. Since he could watch an entire episode of Barney or Sesame Street, I ruled out that option. We concluded he was simply a strong-willed child in need of discipline.

In kindergarten, Ross's teacher commented once that Ross had a large vocabulary and that he seemed to be unusually bright. I was thrilled, but by the end of the year, this same teacher suggested he repeat kindergarten because of his immaturity and inability to complete his work. I respected this teacher's opinion, but after prayer and discussion with my husband, we moved Ross on to first grade.

In first grade, things got worse. It seemed Ross was in the principal's office every week for disrupting the class by wandering around the classroom and aggravating fellow students. The school counselor suggested he might have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), a neurobiological disorder that slightly impairs regions of his brain.

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May 25

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