Does He Look Like A Zombie?
Every time someone writes about some children needing medication for their mental health there are always at least a few comments, verbatim:
"I don't want my kid to be a zombie."
"I would never medicate my child!"
"There are so many other options."
"Parents who medicate their kids are lazy."
So I have to ask....Does this look like a child who is drugged? Does this look like a kid without emotion whose life has lost excitement and joy? Does he look like he's zoned out or miserable? Does he look meek or as if all of his uniqueness has been stripped away?
I didn't think so. I see a child who can go about his day without constant anxiety over what might come at him next. I see an individual who jumps and rocks and laughs. I see a boy who can now function, concentrate and attend long enough to learn and discover the world around him. I see a brother who can now enjoy playing with his siblings because his aggression and impulse control are so much better. I see someone who still experiences every emotion and still has some hard days, but can now get through those days in a more constructive way.
I don't discount that some people have had bad experiences. I don't doubt some kids have been medicated when it isn't needed. I fully understand some individuals have been medicated against their wills and feel strongly due to that experience.
But please don't apply one experience to every other situation. Every child is different and has different needs. We would never recommend just changing diet or hoping for the best for a physical illness; why is a mental illness any different?
I don't see a zombie. I see a happy boy who I love and would do anything and everything to support.