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I was formally diagnosed with ADD earlier this year. I am 53. I was fighting an unknown enemy for decades. Let me tell you, it is far worse than the trial and error it takes to find and tweak the right meds. Hey, if the Strattera works, rock-n-roll. You might want to look again at Strattera when your grandson reaches puberty. There are numerous complaints, way too many to be taken lightly, about Strattera male sexual side effects. I'm an old prud that believes no sex before marriage. Nevertheless, I remember that puberty was not easy - all of a sudden noticing those shapely critters that just months before I wanted nothing to do with. Well that was easy. Learning the social skills was the nightmare. Will Strattera make a difficult transition even more difficult? Don't know, but worth keeping an eye on. I guess it is possible that Strattera will help.

I have another observation. It is possible that the right med can enable a person to learn healthful practices and coping skills and, in time, make the med unnecessary. My first glimpse of that was my psychologist telling me that his job when treating depression was helping the formerly depressed unlearn bad habits. Let's flip that to learn good habits. Good habits come from repetition. Repetition is very difficult for us adders because we are so easily distracted. This is probably the most important discovery I've made yet in my own management. Let me illustrate with actual example. I know these examples do not apply to a child but the principle of *practice makes perfect and meds help ADDers practice* applies.

Here is a list of my time-tested ADD management techniques I've learned so far.

1. Write lists, use memos and put appointments on a calendar. What the heck is so hard about that? Everything if you are ADHD. When I started the meds, I found for the first time I was able to do it and it worked. Initially, I actually had to wait for the Ritalin to kick-in before I could schedule my day. Lately I noticed myself doing it first thing in the AM without drugs. What happened? The med enabled me to practice it enough until it became a habit.

Here's more where the med is helping learn new habits.

2. A trick I learned from one of the members on this board: Underline every word when studying. My job in computers requires me to constantly read technical stuff to keep up. I use the pen to keep my mind tracking on the material, not to highlite. If I really need the details, then I'll go back with a different color pen and highlite keywords and annotate in the columns. My books really look bad and I can't sell them on ebay, but doggone it anyway, the stuff gets in my head much more efficiently than before. I no longer need the meds to study.

3. Schedule the most difficult tasks, ie, those requiring the most powers of concentration first thing in the day when my mind is relatively clear. One of the most difficult things for me to do is restart an old project. A client called me last week and requested a few new features in program I had written for him two years ago. I very foolishly started working on it 3PM and it took me 6 hours with meds to figure out how the program I wrote worked. I estimated 20 hours for this very small job. I'm right, it will take 20 hours now that I got my brain is organized. Needless to say I just ate 6 hours of my time. If I started 6AM, would have had my brain organized in 2 hours, and, if I can learn to better document my work, another thing I hate to do because it is so difficult for me, I'll have it down to one hour and actually get paid for all the time on a project. The meds are helping learn the practice of documentation. I hope you are not into computer programming and know what a bad practice poor documentation is.

There are areas in my business and personal life that, so far, I see no efficient way of doing without meds. I'm very poor at spontaneous conversation and terrible at listening. I do have a sense of ettiquete but without the meds I still will, at times, walk away from a conversation while the other person is still talking. My mind leaves and my body follows. With meds, I can actually think of semi-intelligent things to say on the spot and pretend I'm listening to a boring converstion. Who knows, maybe those things will become habitual also.


They say children grow out of ADHD. I don't believe it. I think if, and it is a very big IF, they survive parental and school training, they learn enough good habits and enough work arounds to manage their lives with drugs.


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