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Should we tell someone?

azcatzazcatz Registered User Posts: 89 Junior Member
edited June 2013 in Parents Forum
Hi everyone--

Big time lurker here :). My D just graduated and, like many of your kids, will be heading off to college in fall.

She is a bright girl who tests well but struggled scholastically because she doesn't turn things in. Most of the time the work got done but not submitted. Near the end of the school year she started saying some things that led us to having her evaluated for depression. At that time, the crisis therapist she saw said that she believed that D might be ADD (no hyperactivity) and that we should have her evaluated and see if ADD treatment might help with the depression (kind of a chicken/egg thing--Is she depressed because of the ADD or is the ADD a symptom of depression).

To make my story slightly shorter, she has been on an ADD med for about 6 weeks and will be continuing on it for the foreseeable future. Is this something that should be disclosed to her school?

She had no accommodations (IEP or 504) in school because she was diagnosed so late and I'm not sure whether there would even BE accommodations at the college level.

What do you all think?
Post edited by azcatz on

Replies to: Should we tell someone?

  • momofthreeboysmomofthreeboys Registered User Posts: 16,504 Senior Member
    The college probably has a disabilities office. I would read up on their web page(s). Generally with adult college students it is voluntary to register with the disabilities office. Generally one can register without requesting accomodations, but then she will be 'on file' with the office if she needs assistance. If she were mine,More importantly, I would want to connect her with at least a physician in the college town to monitor her drug use and physical wellbeing.
  • ordinarylivesordinarylives Registered User Posts: 3,026 Senior Member
    Have her register with the campus disabilities office. They may not disclose this information to anyone without your d's permission. If she wants to request accommodations, they can be set up much ore quickly if she's already registered. That being said, her grades will probably be far less dependent on homework or things that are regularly turned in and more on tests or papers. She may find that without all the grade busy work, she manages more easily.
  • teachandmomteachandmom Registered User Posts: 1,244 Senior Member
    My D was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder during her freshman year. She worked with an on campus counselor, and a doc in the town for medication. Now, she gets the accommodation of an extra half hour on tests/quizzes. All she has to do is give a blue card of some sort to the professors. They aren't allowed to ask "why", they just read the card that states she is to be given an extra half hour. No students even notice when she has done this, and it has helped to take the edge off.
    I think you should encourage your D to let the disabilities office know. They see tons of kids with ADD, etc, so it won't be anything new to them, and it will help if minor accommodations are needed. **I don't know what meds your D will be taking, but get a locking box for her medicine. Lock that box into a larger trunk (like a steamer trunk) that she will store things in. Encourage her not to share that she is taking these meds. So many meds are abused by college kids, that if she is taking the popular one and others find out, it may be stolen if she is not very diligent about locking it up! She should try to take her med dosage out when the roommate is showering and your D has privacy for a bit.
    My D was taking anti-anxiety meds, and we were advised to take precautions such as this...
  • greenbuttongreenbutton Registered User Posts: 2,546 Senior Member
    How schools deal with ADD students, or students with mental health issues like depression varies widely, but yes, you definitely should tell them. They will be on her side. College is very difficult for many ADD students because it relies so heavily on independent organizational skills. Procrastinating is just another way ADD manifests, and college professors are merciless about deadlines. (S1 was dx w ADD and depression at the beginning of what would have been his senior year of college)
  • Classof2015Classof2015 Registered User Posts: 4,343 Senior Member
    D'11/College 2015 did not have any identifiable issues until sophomore year, when the challenges and stress really got to her. She is now "registered" as a student needing extra time on tests, etc. S'14/College 2018 has had a 504 plan in place for years. I plan on mentioning his needs in his college apps.
  • GRITS80GRITS80 Registered User Posts: 540 Member
    My son was diagnosed with ADD Inattentive two months before his high school graduation. I agree that you should contact the counseling or disabilities group at the school. We were asked to provide the report from the testing psychologist as well as her recommendations for what accommodations were appropriate. I don't believe my son ever used any accommodations, but had he needed them they were already approved.

    ADD meds are controlled substances so you will want to check on how she can get her medications at school. My son went to school out of state and was not able to fill a prescription from his primary care physician. The school's clinic contacted our doctor and took over writing the monthly prescriptions so they could be filled locally.
  • SudsieSudsie Registered User Posts: 494 Member
    You should check the college's disability site to find out what testing is necessary to get accommodations--there are often specific requirements and usually require testing rather than just a note from a therapist. Once a disability is documented, it is fairly easy at most schools to get accommodations such as extra time on tests, note taker, etc.

    Sounds like she has executive function issues. They don't go away in college--in fact time management, etc is often more challenging once they are on their own. Formal accommodations don't help if the kid gets behind on work or doesn't hand things in. You may want to consider connecting her with a coach. The Edge Foundation is one resource for ADD coaches.

    I've been going through this process with D1 who is starting college in Sept and D2 who is going into 11th. Feel free to PM me if you want more specifics. Good luck!
  • azcatzazcatz Registered User Posts: 89 Junior Member
    Thank you all for the input. I sent an email to the Disability Office, so we'll take it from there. Fortunately her school is only an hour or so from us, so getting her the meds won't be too bad. I never even CONSIDERED that she needs to lock up the meds, but I know you're all right!

    Thanks again.
  • wis75wis75 Registered User Posts: 13,316 Senior Member
    I noticed a lot of "you should..." responses. Actually SHE should... Remember she is now an adult and needs to be the one contacting any offices et al. Your job has to be in the background, reminding her to do things. It can be hard to let go but she needs to take charge of her life. Hopefully she is enthusiastic about her school- that could make a difference as well. Please let HER be the one sending any emails to the school- even if you hover over her to be sure it gets done.
  • azcatzazcatz Registered User Posts: 89 Junior Member
    You are absolutely right wis! And it's a tough thing to do. I'm working on it though :)
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 32,691 Senior Member
    Our kids both have some chronic health issues. We all submitted the paperwork and met with the head of the disabilities office prior to them starting at the U. We all discussed what appropriate accommodations could be offered and which were appropriate, what services were available and the kids' obligations. We also made appointments and found them docs connected with the U's med school, in case either kid needed medical care beyond the very basic offerings of the health center.

    In a perfect world, my kids would have played a larger role in all of this, but one of the side effects of their condition is very limited stamina, so I took a significant role in all of this. We and the U wanted all if this to be in place before the kids started at the U. S never needed much, but D did require more medical care and accommodations. I just wish she had worked with the docs sooner, but she chose to wait until she was much more symptomatic.
This discussion has been closed.