Over the last two decades we have supported many families. The family case studies presented below have been compiled from interviews with some of those families who shared the difference we have made to their lives. Please note for privacy reasons the names of the parent has been changed
Corinne has a 13 year old son with ADHD and a 18 year old daughter. She suspected her son had ADHD when he was very young; he had some extremely challenging behaviours including violence and anger. He was diagnosed at the end of Year 5. Corinne has been in contact with ADHD Embrace since just after his ADHD diagnosis, and has accessed the information and support from the website, and has frequently attended the webinars.
Corinne has had some very difficult times with her son as until recently he was frequently physically violent towards her. It has also been challenging to get the educational support he needs and he has been excluded several times from his mainstream school.
She has found the information and support around medication from ADHD Embrace invaluable.She has found being able to talk to other parents a very important support mechanism, and is looking forward to the in person meetings starting up again: “I feel less on my own with it all.”
Jenny has two children, a girl aged 16 and a boy aged 8. Her son has ADHD and she was signposted to ADHD Embrace a couple of years ago. Since then Jenny has accessed several webinars and has completed the 123 Magic course.
Being a single parent to a child with ADHD has been very challenging. Finding the right support for her son has been tiring and difficult. Jenny has found the information on the ADHD Embrace website and in the webinars, and the content in the 123 Magic course very helpful in finding positive ways to support her son and manage his behaviour. It has also been really helpful in terms of helping him to understand his diagnosis and his feelings. She has noticed that the support she has put in place means he is less angry and anxious. Critically for her, finding the charity helped her feel less isolated as she met other parents and for the first time did not feel judged.
Amelia is a primary school teacher, and her son was diagnosed with ADHD last year. He is now 10. His behaviour had been very challenging, particularly with younger children and he had violent outbursts. The diagnosis was a long process, and Amelia found one of the hardest aspects was seeing other parents’ reactions to her son’s behaviour.
Amelia had come across ADHD Embrace during the diagnostic process, and found the information and advice about ADHD very supportive at what was an extremely difficult time. Once he was diagnosed she and her husband attended the 123 Magic course. Doing the course has also meant that her husband and Amelia are ‘on the same page’ when it comes to supporting their son.
The family found the ADHD Embrace advice and support about medication – particularly the webinar – to be very helpful as they made the decision to go down that route. Their son is now taking medication and whilst it has taken a long time to find a combination that works, his behaviour is now much easier to manage and he is happier and more confident at school.
Both Joanne and her daughter – then aged eight – were diagnosed with ADHD at the same time. Her daughter was struggling to concentrate at school, and having difficulty with friendships and she was referred to ADHD Embrace by the GP.
Joanne keeps a close eye on the newsletter and website and attends as many seminars and webinars as possible. The one focusing on EHCPs was particularly useful as she was trying to work out whether this was a route they needed to go down. Joanne also found the webinar on teenagers very helpful, to think about what support she could put in place for her daughter as she grows up.
Joanne has found parenting a child with ADHD when she has the same condition herself to be difficult. For Joanne, the information about ADHD she has accessed through ADHD Embrace has also helped her understand her own condition.Joanne feels she can help her daughter avoid some of the mistakes she feels she made as a result of her condition.
Elsie’s son is now 16; he was diagnosed when he was 10. She also has an older daughter. Her son attended a very nurturing, supportive primary school. Things changed significantly when he started secondary. The family would get phone calls every day from school due to behavioural issues and he even ran away from school. The situation put a lot of pressure on the family. The GP referred the family to ADHD Embrace and Elsie attended the post-diagnosis workshop. She accessed information about EHCPs and began to understand and navigate the process for her son. She has attended many of the seminars and workshops, which have given her the information she has needed to make decisions about medication and support for her son. She now feels confident in dealing with the school and making sure he has support in place. Elsie has also met other parents as a result who have been able to understand the challenges of having a child with ADHD.
Two years after diagnosis their son is much happier and the family as a whole is under much less pressure. He has discovered a passion which has meant he has been able to leave school and pursue it as a vocation.
Sarah has three children – daughters age 4 and 9, and a 14 year old son. Her two oldest children were diagnosed with ASD and ADHD when they were four.
Her oldest son was in a special school for a few years, and with support and an ECHP is now in mainstream. This last year however has been very difficult with COVID and with his anxiety about the transition to secondary; this has resulting in another diagnosis of sensory processing disorder. Sarah has overall had great support from the school, which has made a significant difference to her children: largely helped by the education liaison volunteer at ADHD Embrace who has helped her throughout the process.
Family life was very challenging when the children were younger; Sarah recalls days of feeling that everything was hard. The family put a lot of support in place once they had the diagnoses, including family therapy which helped to manage the dynamics between the children.
Sarah feels ‘lucky’ to have ADHD Embrace nearby. She has attended several seminars, and in particular found the one on sleep very helpful. She is impressed by the range of experts available through the talks, and also likes how there is always time and space for questions.