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A Letter to Parents:

I am the mother of a 14 year old boy and a 9 year old boy who both have valuable gifts:
My oldest child has been a promising artist since he was introduced to drawing in Kindergarten by a teacher who was convinced that he was a special student. This teacher thought he was probably bored in class because he wasn't challenged enough by the kindergarten curriculum. She recommended him for the Gifted and Talented Program in his school. The director of this program tested him and told me in a form letter that he did not fit the profile of a gifted and talented student. He wasn't excelling in all his subjects at an equally high rate and he wasn't focused and driven to achieve. I was surprised at how she came to this conclusion with one meeting with my son. My son said he didn't want to be in that program anyway because he would be treated differently by everyone. The matter was dropped.
In third grade he started having problems in class. His work was good, but his behavior, according to the teacher was unacceptable. Let me remind you that third grade means 8-9 year old children. He talked to other students when he wasn't supposed to. That included lunch time, which should give you an idea how unreasonable the demands of teachers and school rules can be. He played in class. He drew pictures on his work. He didn't listen to directions. I received notes from the teacher every week. He was suddenly a problem child.
Now, I had not considered him a problem at all, but I talked to him and suggested that he try to do as the teachers asked. Eventually, ADD was brought up by this teacher and she sent home a list of characteristics, of which my child had a great many. I was told that he should be evaluated by a psychiatrist to see if he was ADD. Fortunately, the school had no program to back up this recommendation and my child never had to see a psychiatrist, though, on many occasions the third grade teacher suggested that Ritalin was the answer. When I pulled my head out of the sand and started looking at this situation, I realized that this teacher, like so many others, couldn't handle children who act like children. Her own child was on Ritalin as I found out later.
In the years since third grade it has been a battle to stave off the psychiatric influence in school. I eventually removed my son from public school in 7th grade and he is a much happier individual. It is a crime that teachers who would like to rely on drugs to control their students are even allowed to teach our children. If I sound like I am against Psychiatry, you better believe it. Anyone who passes themselves off as help and then hands out mind altering drugs to people, especially innocent children, are criminals as far as I am concerned. Psychiatry and it's drugs are not an option.
My other son who is now 9 years old is also a great artist, but his activity level is far greater than my oldest son. He would be considered a classic ADHD and believe me Ritalin was suggested for him by several teachers. He is all over the place most of the time. In Kindergarten through half of third grade I was getting notes and calls every other day, until we moved to a new school. He is in 4th grade now and doing very well, mainly because he has a teacher who knows children and loves children. She knows how to teach with a positive attitude and he loves her. His third grade teacher was the same way. He hardly ever gets into trouble now The only thing that is different are the teachers. He and I didn't do anything different. So what do you think was the problem? To my mind, the teachers who squawk all the time about a child being a problem are doing nothing but squawking.
In the last 4 months I have discovered that I can help my child control himself with vitamins and nutrition. He takes a multivitamin formula for children. They make the claim it is intended for children who are active. I can really see a difference in his behavior. He is still the same sweet, funny, spontaneous, smart boy he always was. He can control himself better and can choose when to act "wild", rather than being at the mercy of uncontrollable urges.
My advice to anyone with children is:
Get a good nutrition book to help you find what vitamins and nutrients your child needs. Remember, we are all different, even in our vitamin requirements, so the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowances) don't necessarily suite everybody. Also the RDA is "minimum" to avoid malnutrition, not for optimum health.

And most importantly, don't buy the lie that psychotropic drugs are going to help your child do better in school and in life. If they are on them get them off now and if they aren't on them yet, don't ever let anyone put your child on them. They are dangerous. Even the most out of control child will be better off if you find some other way to help them.

Diana Rhyne

Feel free to Email me.

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