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[Susan notes: I applaud any recognition that ADHD is way over-diagnosed. The writer makes a great point: Since treating parents is often the best first-line treatment for children, we should assess the mental muscles of the parents as we train those of the children.



I have an over-the-top story that touches on this topic. The scene was a parent conference about a boy with cognitive delays who was also labeled emotionally disturbed mainstreamed into my classroom. After telling Mom about his great progress which I've written about in national publications), I mentioned that he still made certain noises when I read aloud. "It's a little hard to describe," I said.



Mom interrupted with, "Oh you mean this?" and quacked like a duck. When I nodded she smiled, "Oh, we all do that."



OK.



This boy begged me to retain him in 3rd grade. "I could be your helper," he said. "I know where everything is."

]

Published in New York Times
05/19/2014

To the editor

Re Mental Muscle vs. A.D.H.D. (Mind, May 13): Hooray to Daniel Goleman for bringing to our attention that there may be a better first-line treatment than medication for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Let me add that since treating parents is often the best first-line treatment for children, we should assess the mental muscles of the parents as we train those of the children.



Steven Gruntfest


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