ADHD: The Medication Non-Compliance

One of my biggest struggles with my son with managing his ADHD is the medication.  I remember a time when I refused to give him medication, mainly because of my denial of him having this condition.

However, once he did start the medication, the changes in him were bitter sweet.  These stimulants turn my son into a successful student, making him capable of everything I know he’s capable of academically.  Although the bitter is his personality.  My talkative, PDA, sports stat rambler, thousand question asker turns into a silent place holder.  It seems as though he’s just “there”.

What’s even worse, is he notices it as well, and struggles with compliance of his medication.  He has this desire to want to be able to “do” everyday task like “normal” people without needing medication. He also wants to be able to be himself.

Due to these wants and desires my son has, the battle of getting him to take his medication has been an up-hill battle from the start.  Initially, it was the side effects of headaches, loss of appetite, insomnia, mood changes, zombie feeling.  Once we tackled these problems and found a medication with minimal side effects, the next up-hill battle became, “I don’t like taking pills.”

To add to the non-compliant issues, his dad too is not compliant and on board with his medication regimen when in his care (on the weekends).  Therefore, this makes everything I’m trying to enforce impossible!

My son has went through all the typical non-complaint med routines.  Pretending to take his meds, the hiding under the tongue routine, the hide it in the hand only to be found in the  pocket, lying about taking the med when CLEARLY he did not, having melt-downs about having to take meds, taking only SOME of the dosage, and the list goes on.

Just recently, his doctor switched him to the Daytrana Patch.  His only comment was, “Why didn’t they give me this a long time ago?” However, guess what? He’s still non-compliant, especially when with dad, still lying about taking his meds.

This struggle with him wanting to be normal and his dad convincing him he is “normal” and don’t need these medicines to be successful, is the thorn in my side.

It’s so frustrating and hurtful in the same breath to see my son struggle when I also see days of his potential.  His first day on his new medicine, it was like a new child was doing homework.  It was legible, I could make sense of it, and it was 90% accurate THE FIRST TIME!  That’s like finding a cure for cancer in my house.

I have him set up to see a new counselor to deal with his underlying depression and hope he can help tackle these issues.  My son told me, “Mom, nothing motivates me to get good grades in school.”  What do you say to that?  I’ll rant about that conversation in my next post.

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