reader’s story: Rosetta


an interview with: 

Rosetta DeLoof-Primmer
ADHD child(ren):

Roger, 11, 5th grade, ADHD, R/O dx of Bipolar & Aspergers

Vincent, 4, Pre-School…R/O dx of ADHD

NON-ADHD child(ren):

Angelique, 5, Pre-K~Spectrum Disorder, Mild CP, Hypotonia

Who are you?

I am a working mom of three special needs kids. I have been married for 10 years to my plumber husband. I met my husband when I was 15 and he 17, high school sweethearts, and have been together ever since (14 years now!). I was raised mostly by a single mother, and my maternal grandparents after my mother left my abusive father. I honor her and look up to what she over came as well in her life.


Describe your ADHD child using only ONE word: enlightening

What about your life makes your ADHD story uniquely yours?   

I have a unique situation where I have special needs kids AND work as a Child & Family Psychotherapist! I am a therapist in the school district my son is in (which is a small rural community, adding even more of an unusual and, at times, uncomfortable twist). I too have recently been diagnosed with ADHD and Bipolar disorder after struggling for the first 29 years of my life! Through having this diagnosis, I was still able to achieve a Masters Degree with GPA higher than 3.7, although I can’t say that was the case in Elementry-High School, barely scraping by to graduate! I have an insider’s perspecitve personally, professionally and as a parent… at times its my world! But, having “been there done that,” I also know the brighter side of the ADHD child/parent/person/professional and that not all of it is doom and gloom (but there are days…oh there are days!).


How did your ADHD child come to be diagnosed? 
Both of my sons have sensory issues and were “hard to handle” kids, but many dismissed it as “being a boy” or “bad parenting.” I have taken my eldest to NUMEROUS therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists and went through numerous medications, all of which made his and our life hell. Most recently, per referral, we met a phenominal therapist and have an appointment with a neuro-psychologist! Hoping to get more answers soon!

What are your ADHD child’s strengths/gifts/talents? Weaknesses? Obsessions? 

Both boys are extrememly intelligent. Both also hit milestones early. My eldest had nearly straight A’s and one B+ last semester, and hardly needs to study to ace everything. He does however lack in social skills, social ques, making and keeping friends, getting along with domineering adults/teachers, anxiety, OCD tendancies, ruminations, inattentiveness, organizing, anger/anger outbusts, controlling his temper. My youngest is VERY hyper, has to have lots of attentions (as does my eldest). If he thinks that something is wrong he’s going to literally tell you off. He has a very extended vocabulary and is maniuplative, which my eldest never was. Both boys are husky built and crave carbs in any shape or form, they are PICKY eaters (well all three are)!


What sports or extra-curricular activities does your child participate in successfully?

My eldest LOVES sports. He is in football, soccer, wrestling, basketball, was in Little League but decided this year that wasn’t his thing, swimming, 4-H, Math and Spell Bowl, Student Council, ROCK. He has had trouble with losing and gets frustrated easily if he doesn’t think something is fair. He is a very black and white thinker and wants to be perfect.

What strategies do you employ to cope with ADHD? 

We use 1, 2, 3 Magic, timeouts, sensory deprivation, CTB, Behavioral Therapy/Modification, and watch their diet as best we can! (Which is hard considering the boys sneak food and my eldest has been known to binge eat when no one is watching…on carbs of course).


If you could give one piece of advice to a parent of an ADHD child just diagnosed, what would it be?

Learn as much as you can about the disorder and find a good doctor/psych/therapist! Work with the schools and try to befriend the teachers, principal, etc. Understand that this is a MEDICAL CONDITION/DISORDER and treat it as such. The behaviors are SYMPTOMS of the illness and most likely are not what the child is wanting/choosing to do.

If you could have a free 60-second spot on a public broadcast station, what would you share, show, say? 

Very much the above about educating people that the brain is an ORGAN just like the pancreases or heart. That “mental illness” is a disease, just as the other organs of the body can become diseased and need to be treated. We wouldn’t punish a child who has diabetes and became symptomatic from it, just as we should not “punish” a child who is having symptomatic behaviors from their brain chemicals malfunctioning.


Does your child take medication to manage their ADHD? Is so, what medication and at what dosage? How does it work for them? What side effects do you see?

We are not medicating yet as we had a horrible experience with it earlier. We are now looking into it again after my wonderful, life-changing experience when a doctor put me on the right “cocktail.”


Does your child attend public school or a special school? Does he or she have an IEP or a 504 Plan? What kind of accommodations do they receive? 

Yes. He has a behavior plan which has helped accommodate him when he is having symptoms: decrease sensory stimulation, go to another classroom to cool off, etc. He has two male mentors who are coaches that he looks up to. More time on tests, goes to a quiet room to test, a chance to be reminded about things are also part of his accommodations.


What else would you like to share with other parents on this similar journey? 
There is just so much I can share from the various perspectives that I have!


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COVER3D_400sq_bestsellAward-Winning Blogger. Freelance Writer. Author. Warrior Mom.
A self-described “veteran” parent of a son with ADHD, Penny Williams is the author of the Amazon best-seller about her parenthood in the trenches, Boy Without Instructions: Surviving the Learning Curve of Parenting a Child with ADHD. She is also the creator of the award-winning website, {a mom’s view of ADHD}, a frequent contributor on parenting a child with ADHD for ADDitude Magazine and other parenting and special needs publications, and co-founder of the annual Happy Mama Conference & Retreat, a weekend away for moms of kids with neurobehavioral disorders. Look for her second book, What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting ADHD, in late 2014. Follow Penny at http://BoyWithoutInstructions.com.

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About the author

COVER3D_400sq_bestsellAward-Winning Blogger. Freelance Writer. Author. Warrior Mom. A self-described “veteran” parent of a son with ADHD, Penny Williams is the author of the Amazon best-seller about her parenthood in the trenches, Boy Without Instructions: Surviving the Learning Curve of Parenting a Child with ADHD. She is also the creator of the award-winning website, {a mom's view of ADHD}, a frequent contributor on parenting a child with ADHD for ADDitude Magazine and other parenting and special needs publications, and co-founder of the annual Happy Mama Conference & Retreat, a weekend away for moms of kids with neurobehavioral disorders. Look for her second book, What to Expect When You’re Not Expecting ADHD, in late 2014. Follow Penny at http://BoyWithoutInstructions.com.

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The "ADHD Mommas" are not medical or mental health professionals, nor an ADHD coach. Any opinions shared here are just that, opinions. I, and the other "ADHD Mommas," are sharing our experiences with our own ADHD children. Please do not re-post or publish any content or photos without a link back to {a mom's view of ADHD}. Have the courtesy to give credit where credit is due. Copyright protected. All rights reserved.

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