I want to thank you for writing your book, Running On Ritalin. I am currently reading it and am almost finished with it now. It has been very helpful to me on clearing up many of the concerns and questions I had concerning ADHD and Ritalin. I have read many books on the subject and they take totally opposing views, either completely for the use of Ritalin or completely against it, which makes it very confusing.
Your book seems to take a very objective viewpoint. I love your style of dealing with the children and parents. My son has all the classics symptoms of the ADHD - hyperactive and impulsive. I have avoided an evaluation up until now because we have always tried to deal with it as part of his personality and have generally been very opposed to the use of Ritalin. As my son gets older and more is required of him, it seems harder to ignore. I can deal with some hyperactivity but I'm worn out now and I'm sure this has something to do with not being able to cope with the behavior as well as I'd like. I find myself just losing it (yelling) at him which bothers me greatly. Also, I have avoided the evaluation because I don't know how to find a doctor that will truly work with us to find a solution and not automatically put my son on Ritalin, although I will consider this if it truly needed. I am willing do have parent training or try behavior modification -- whatever he needs.
The main frustrating problem is disciplining for the same things over and over and over --- he just doesn't seem to care about the consequences of his actions until its too late. We are very firm and some might say strict with him and I don't know if we expect too much of him or not. He is 5 years old and I am home schooling him. My sister had her son in private christian school and the school said he must be evaluated because they thought he was ADHD. She took him out and is home schooling him now and he is doing fine at home. The expectations of the school were just too much for him and he would have HAD to be on Ritalin to stay. I didn't want that for my son so we are home schooling as well. (My son is much more extreme than hers-- I'd hate to see what they'd say about him!) My family doctor does not handle ADHD evaluations and is referring me to a neurologist for testing. I don't know anything about this doctor but I will continue to go to different ones until I find one that I like. If they don't look deep enough and prescribe Ritalin immediately after little history, then they are not for me. They did complete blood work at my family doctor, at my request, to make sure their are no physical problems that way.
Obviously, we can't come to you because we are in Houston, TX but I was wondering if there were any doctors here that you could recommend to us that use the style of evaluation that you use? Also, I have to try to stay within my insurance plan which is Blue Cross Blue Shield. This may be a far fetched request but after reading your book - I wish we could come to you!
Thank you for your very kind words about Running on Ritalin. I tried to be even handed and attempt to address the "living imbalance" with a number of strategies (including medication if necessary).