Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Medicated Child; Part I

I recorded The Medicated Child months ago, but hadn't watched it yet.

Honestly, I was a little afraid to.

The decision to medicate my boys was not an easy one, and I still occasionally second guess myself, even though it is clear that medication is helping them both enormously.

But we are getting a new DVR (because we are getting a new tv and for some reason that I can't quite grasp, the old DVR won't work with the new tv. Nor will the old dvd player. Or the old speakers. Or the old cable....) and so, I will lose everything in my queue.

So I watched it last night and as I suspected, I was a little freaked out. A little shocked. Terribly saddened. Inexplicably angry. And amazingly grateful.

There is an incredibly chilling segment where an angelic looking five year old girl discusses how she would kill her parents.

There is a sixteen year old boy who takes so many medications that he experiences constant and perhaps, irreversible tics.

There is a 4 year old who is dead because of anti-psychotic medications.

I think it's something that's worth watching, even if your children are "normal". Because in the last ten years, there has been a 4000% increase in the number of children diagnosed with and prescribed antipsychotic, mood altering, anti-anxiety and ADD/ADHD drugs.

Four THOUSAND percent. That is absolutely staggering.

Children in the United States are prescribed these drugs 4 times more than children in the rest of world combined.

And your child could be next.

Your child could be diagnosed as learning disabled. Anxious. Moody. Anti-social. Oppositional. Defiant.

I have more to share on the issue of medicating children, but I'll save that for tomorrow.

You can view it online by clicking the link above. Go watch. And watch the 2001 Frontline Program Medicating Kids.

They will change your perspective.

11 Comments:

  • At 6:20 PM, Blogger All Things BD said…

    I'm interested to read your thoughts on this topic. We're going through ADD testing for my 7 year old, and I've always been biased against medicating her, but with no hard data or personal experience to point to. Just my own judging attitude.

    Thanks for sharing your experience and the link to the show.

     
  • At 7:23 PM, Blogger Tracey said…

    Justin was on Strattera for about 6 months. It was good at first, he reacted the ways we'd hoped and seemed to be improving. Then. Then his anger started increasing and spiralling out of control. I called the doctor one day and was encouraged to stick with it, but our guts told us to quit. Within a week, he was a different kid. And this year, he is remarkable. He's grown up, and doesn't have the attention issues anymore. I feel thankful for that, but I don't know what we'd be doing if he still did...

     
  • At 7:53 PM, Blogger Life As I Know It said…

    It IS staggering. And scary.
    I'm off to watch the link right now...

     
  • At 8:08 PM, OpenID realitytesting said…

    These are decision that I hope I never have to face. But considering the level of depression that runs through both sides of my girls' families? I wouldn't be surprised if I will. I'm going to watch this...thanks for posting.

     
  • At 8:38 PM, Blogger flutter said…

    I have to be honest. I am so scared of the level of overdiagnosis that I feel goes on in terms of these types of illnesses.
    Is your kid high energy? must be ADHD! Shy? Must be depressed! I would rather people take your approach and question, and not blindly think that these meds are the only options, but rather the last ones.

    I am so glad you are seeing success with your kids and that you made the right choice.

     
  • At 9:17 PM, Blogger Fairly Odd Mother said…

    Wow, I'll have to watch that show. It does seem unbelievable that so many kids are medicated now. PBS did a special about boys in schools (I only caught a bit of it) but it talked about how the elimination of recess in many schools has made it so hard for many boys to run off their extra energy. This could explain how so many of them, in turn, get labeled as needing something to calm them down.

     
  • At 9:36 PM, Blogger jen said…

    4000%??

    i think that this is one example of what's wrong (ha, just one example) with a convenient culture, we want quick answers, quick fixes, and over medication (of many things) can be a result.

    (not knocking choosing this, but the rate at which it's chosen.)

     
  • At 7:57 AM, OpenID wheelsonthebus said…

    Great post. Zach is anxious, but it would never occur to us to medicate. It seems to me that there ARE times children need to be medicated (as you well know), but those times are fewer and farther between than people think.

     
  • At 8:35 AM, Blogger Avalon said…

    I did watch this, as did my daughter (the pre-school teacher). We both came away finding it less than compelling, not because of the content, but because of the lack of content. It was heavily billed as a special discussing the over-medicating of children with diagnoses such as ADHD, yet they really focused on children who were far more affected by Psychosis.

    I found that it was difficult for me to clarify the argument for medicating vs. not-medicating when 2 of the children profiled were having active homicidal/suicidal thoughts.

    It simply was not what it professed to be. I normally love PBS specials, but this one was a disappointment for me.

     
  • At 5:45 PM, Blogger Mitzi Green said…

    when my son was 18 months old, i was told by the director of his then-daycare that he appeared to have ADHD and i should have him evaluated and put on medication. i told her to shove it. when he was 3, another daycare director told me the same thing. i told her to shove it, too. my son got kicked out of 2 or 3 more preschools before i finally relented, took him to a psychiatrist, who immediately said "ADHD" and put him on an anti-hypertensive that is used "off-label" for ADHD. over the next 3 years, he was eventually put on stimulants for ADHD, zoloft for depression, and at my continued insistance, a mood stabilizer for bipolar, which i suspected all along. i now have a 6 year old who is in the middle of a textbook case of mania. the psych community around here are slim pickin's when it comes to BP in children--most are reluctant to diagnose it, let alone treat it. the end result is my child is over and over again misdiagnosed with the more acceptable "ADHD" and prescribed more stimulants that only worsen his condition.

     
  • At 6:53 PM, Blogger Terri said…

    I'm really glad you posted these links. I watched both programs. They were very eye opening. I sometimes wonder about my nine year old because she is soooo easily distracted from the task at hand, yet she doesn't seem like a classic ADD case either.

     

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