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new york times

“When Dr. Michael Anderson hears about his low-income patients struggling in elementary school, he usually gives them a taste of some powerful medicine: Adderall.”

“We’ve decided as a society that it’s too expensive to modify the kid’s environment. So we have to modify the kid.” – Dr. Michael Anderson

cut the budget and up the stimulants? this as an answer to children’s under performance in school? i realize that parents are desperate, especially when they are facing financial strain, but why is this okay with our government?

introducing stimulants to young children, is a really bad idea. that seems obvious. clearly there is a lot of desperation out there. people need help on so many fronts. when it comes to their children taking stimulants it is hard to fathom how parents come to see this as a rational decision when their child is struggling. that said, we all know what a long road it can be to finding ways to support our children. options take time, energy and a clear mind. most parents lack all three of these things.

a revolution is in order. so much needs to change. most urgently, children should not be taking drugs to perform better in an unhealthy environment. the alternative is obvious – the environment must change to better support the development of children’s minds and bodies. with the continual cutting of funding for our schools, the environment is deteriorating at a very fast rate. the curve seems to be quite steep, cliff-like really, after having existed on a gentle downward slope for so long. the tree is falling fast. class sizes are growing, recess time is shrinking, testing has completely infiltrated the classroom on all levels, and students do not know how to occupy their own time. meanwhile they are expected to sit still and be quiet. it has been a broken system for too long – one in which people are not seen for who they are, but are expected to be on the same path, walking at the same rate as everyone else. good grades are demanded in a mind-numbing environment. the only way to succeed is to avoid asking questions and do as you are told. how can one grow into a healthy mind and body in such an environment? i know humans are adaptable, but please.

current answer: give them the pill form of a straight- jacket. a perfect idea when considering the circumstances.

really???

toward the end of the article they mention a casual observation of the diagnosis rates of A.D.H.D. having risen as sharply as school funding has declined.

why do people not see that we are past the triage phase – the environment is not only unhealthy, it is dying.

click here for article

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i like pretty much everything she has to say:

“The optimal parent is one who is involved and responsive, who sets high expectations but respects her child’s autonomy. ”

“The happiest, most successful children have parents who do not do for them what they are capable of doing, or almost capable of doing; and their parents do not do things for them that satisfy their own needs rather than the needs of the child.”

“If you can’t stand to see your child unhappy, you are in the wrong business.”

“If pushing, direction, motivation and reward always come from the outside, the child never has the opportunity to craft an inside.”

“Parents also have to make sure their own lives are fulfilling. There is no parent more vulnerable to the excesses of overparenting than an unhappy parent. One of the most important things we do for our children is to present them with a version of adult life that is appealing and worth striving for.”

 

click here for the article