Jessica McCabe is an actress and YouTube personality with a large following. Recently, she posted a video with the title “To My Mom, Who ‘Drugged’ Me.” In the video, the actress details her life with ADHD and how she is grateful that her mother helped her seek medical attention and treatment for her condition.
It’s an unexpected twist in a world where celebrities and YouTubers often “med-shame” others.
Med-shaming refers to criticizing those who want to treat mental issues with medication rather than natural means. But McCabe is not ashamed, either of her condition or her dependence on medications that help correct it.
The actress has no time for judgment or shame.
Parents of children with ADHD, meanwhile, often face extreme criticism, especially from other parents. McCabe borrows her language from these people, who accuse parents of “drugging” or “sedating” neurologically different children. This can be a difficult thing to bear in an already-stressful situation. Many parents do not know if they are making the right choice by putting their ADHD child on medication.
“Thank you for listening when I told you I was struggling,” said McCabe, speaking to her mother. “Thank you for standing up for me when Dad tried to dismiss what I was dealing with as ‘normal.’ I know you were busy, but I never ran out of medication because you took the time to take me to every appointment.”
McCabe said she learned that her condition was nothing to fear.
At the end of the video, McCabe grew teary-eyed as she described the difference her mother made. McCabe said her mother’s willingness to fight for her daughter made her a happier and more confident person. McCabe added that she had long been ashamed of her condition, but her mother’s help and medical treatment helped her feel unashamed.
“I now understand it’s because ADHD brains develop differently,” McCabe said. “You didn’t know that. You didn’t have the research that I have, but you listened to me when I told you that I needed help.”
McCabe hopes that the people who watch her video will seek the treatment they need.
“There are many misconceptions about ADHD and ADHD treatment that keep kids from getting the support they need,” McCabe’s video notes. Its ending also calls attention to resources in the video description and begs parents to seek proper treatment for their children who have ADHD. The actress’s video has more than 60,000 views.
Parenting children with ADHD means worrying … a lot.
In an article for Babble, Jill Robbins described the guilt and shame that come with parenting a child with ADHD. She said it was difficult to know whether she was making the right choice for her daughter, who began taking medication for ADHD when she was in fourth grade.
Robbins said she always second-guessed her own decisions regarding her daughter’s treatment. But ultimately, she was grateful that she reached out to doctors who could help her and her daughter understand the condition and know what treatment was best for her. Robbins said one treatment isn’t right for everyone. She ended by asking readers to seek medical help and to be attentive to what their children are saying.
ADHD is more common than many people realize.
More than 6 million children in the United States have some form of ADHD. This condition usually becomes recognizable just after toddlerhood and up to age 6. However, because of conflicting advice and other worries, only 6 percent of children take medication to manage their condition.
It is a condition that is surrounded by judgment. This is because ADHD in children often comes across as hyperactivity. This means that children might be labeled as “bad kids” or “badly behaved” when they are actually suffering from ADHD. Other symptoms include forgetfulness and trouble concentrating. While some people find it manageable, others find it makes life very difficult.
Although the condition is more common in males than females, even women struggle with ADHD into adulthood. In fact, around 4 percent of adults have some form of ADHD that they deal with every day.
Why are we seeing more cases of ADHD?
Diagnoses of ADHD have risen in the last few years. This is most likely due to increased awareness of the condition. Nowadays, doctors and parents are less likely to dismiss child hyperactivity as “troublemaking.” This is a good thing, since it means that children have easier access to medication or therapy that can help them understand their condition and live more peacefully.
While there is no one “solution” for ADHD, McCabe and others want people to know that there are available treatments to help those with this condition.
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