The Young And The Hyperactive Essay, Research Paper
The Young and the Hyperactive
Five percent of kids are affected with A.D.H.D. or Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, which is characterized by impulsiveness, hyperactivity, a short attention span, which often leads to learning disabilities, various behavioral problems, social problems, and low self-esteem both at home and at school.
Imagine trying to sit still after drinking three or four cups of coffee. This is roughly was it is like for me when I m not on medication. my Peyton cousin affirmed. Their minds go a hundred different directions at the same time making it impossible for them to concentrate on tasks. Because their minds wander uncontrollably the child appears lazy, ignorant, or of need of an attitude adjustment. Oftentimes this is corrected with stimulants such as Ritalin or the innovation: Adderall. These help them to focus and are often the only means for them to perform on a level near that of their peers. Children with this learning disability are often very intelligent and talented but cannot organize and prioritize their thoughts. Two cousins of mine have this very problem.
My cousins Peyton and Kari are very close to me and both have A.D.H.D., but one has had the optimal environment for overcoming the disorder and the other has had about the worst. Peyton has grown up with two wealthy parents and a sister to support her. Her parents supplied her with as many provisions as possible to help her be a healthy, happy student whereas Kari has not had that luxury. She grew up moving around went through her mother s two divorces and two marriages with no siblings, and her mother often struggling to pay the bills. Outside factors have had a huge affect the way these two girls have handled having A.D.H.D.
Affluence is very helpful when dealing with an A.D.H.D. child. Given to the child are special opportunities such as tutors, private schools, and doctors. Peyton has had all these options provided for her to help her be a healthy, happy student and child. Kari, on the other hand is the daughter of a teacher for Tulsa Public Schools who do not award their employees with a high salary for their services. Added to low pay, her mother is deficient in the skills for handling finances, which in effect puts them in a bind for money toward the end of the month. Raised rent at their apartments and divorce has forced them to move six times in eight years. They also had to be creative in their housing– once, living with my mom and I in a cramped one-bedroom apartment. Contrastingly, Peyton grew up in a large house with a three-car garage, a big backyard with a pool, four bedrooms, and multiple living areas in a nice neighborhood on the south side of town with many other kids to play with. Although Peyton lived in just one place, she often changed schools as Kari did– moving from place to place.
School life for these two girls was very difficult so they often jumped from school
to school. Peyton went to private schools, home school, and public schools. Kari could only afford to go from public school to public school some in small towns to lower the student/teacher ratio just as Peyton had done moving from public to private to home school. They changed schools because their grades were low due to their inattention in class, which in turn made them lack the understanding of the subject matter. They both proved to be intelligent when doctors tested them for I.Q. but could not focus in class and on homework for long periods so they did horribly on tests in school. Another option for Peyton was tutoring, which helped her find fun ways to become focused on work and gave her someone to supervise her–one on one so she could not get off-track. She showed marked improvement over time. Kari who did not have this choice went through cycles of improvement and decline getting progressively worse because the constant disappointment and lowered self-esteem drove her to focus more on her social life, which also needed improvement. Likewise, Peyton also had many problems fitting in with her peers at school.
Peyton usually has had a few close friends whom she was very dependant upon for support. In the public school she recently attended, the social situation gave her high anxiety and made school a dread; she took every opportunity possible to miss school such as faking sick, taking vacation, and taking holidays which, were an enormous relief. Kari on the other hand, used the social scene as the driving force for her to get out of bed every morning. She found the quickest way to climb the popularity ladder and integrated herself into large cliques, but this often resulted in love/hate relationships and a soap opera type of life. On days when the drama was too vicious for her to handle, she often played sick and stayed home. Another factor that affects the lives of my cousins are at home: their immediate families.
Peyton has a well-rounded, very typical family with both of her parents, a sister and two dogs. Kari has gone through two stepfathers who were mostly figureheads having no real relationship with her and practically no fatherly duties to fulfill. However, mostly it was just she and her mother fending for them, since she had no siblings. Peyton conversely had three people she to interact and cope with. Most importantly, she had a very competitive sister, which teaches patience, sharing, and co-reliance. Kari had to have all her needs met by her mother but did not learn to meet the needs of others. The maternal relationships of Kari and Peyton are also very important because they often have clashes with them, yet they choose to handle them very differently. Peyton chooses to tune out comments her mother makes when she is disappointed in her by daydreaming and watching excessive amounts of television. On the contrary, Kari thrives on conflict and will argue with her mother for hours without resolution ending only after sometime gets hurt in the concluding catfight that is always inevitable.
Peyton and Kari have handled their disabilities in very different ways, as a result of the advantages and disadvantages given to them. Kari has chosen to drop out of school altogether whereas Peyton with the help of the medication Adderall, tutoring, and strong support of her family has established herself in the school best for her and prospered in her career as a student. She now makes A s and B s and looks forward to going to school everyday.