Home Recovery Parent Info Adult Info Special Interests Your Contributions E-Mail

Improper use of Ritalin for an AS child -- A personal story

By Stacie:
My experience on Ritalin.

I was put on Ritalin in 3rd grade in 1972 because my teacher said I "day dreamed" and wiggled in my chair. They called me "hyperactive" at that time. I spent 7 years on it untill in High School, I said I wasn't taking it anymore and quit. Here are some of my reflections...

I grew up a military brat. My father was stationed in VA. Beach at the time. I remember my "day dreaming" as they so called it. Had they done more research into my overall health they would have discovered I had/have tactile defensiveness since infancy. I could hold mashed potatos in my mouth for a very long time. Everytime I swallowed, they choked me. Fruit pulp gags me. I hated having hair cuts and it always took several people to hold me down in order to cut my hair or toe nails. Had they looked any further, they would discovered I could hear the lights. It sounded like little machine guns. Had they looked even deeper they would have discovered, that I could see the lights flicker. Had they asked about my gastro-intestinal system. They would have discovered that I never had a "normal" bowell movement. It was all diarhea. Had they asked about my play habits - they would have discovered that I only set up games to play but never really understood how to play them. I loved to play with plastic animals and always set them up in a nice little scene. Or the same thing with the Fischer Price people. I never played with these things only set them up. I absolutely loved to bounce on a pogo stick. I would do that for hours or swing in a swing...

Does any of this sound familiar?

Had they had tested me in any sort of way, they would have discovered that I am moderately dyslexic also along with Asperger's. What a combo!

No, they didn't do any of the above. I remember talking to my mother a few times when I was older. I told her that probably to other people the Ritalin appeared to work. I didn't wiggle in my chair anymore. I still daydreamed. It was a shutdown process for me. I was overwhelmed in a classroom. I never did that at home. But at school, all the Ritalin did was kept me from wiggling in the chair. I wiggled to fight the shutdown! I knew I wasn't suposed to shutdown and I fought it. After the Ritalin, I just didn't care if I shut down or not.

Did it work? Was it effective? Not to me. I just didn't care.

[My thanks to Stacie for allowing me to use this experience on my site.]

Home Recovery Parent Info Adult Info Special Interests Your Contributions E-Mail