Oh, my heart.
Ethan's school gives the kids planners. They are responsible for keeping track of what they did that day and highlighting any homework. I think it's a fantastic idea.
Today Ethan's planner came home and in the sidebar he wrote, "I need to get out of here." Then beneath that, "I need a break." The first he dated 12/1/13, the second he dated 12/4/13. Under both of those he drew a stick figure of a boy crying, tear and all.
I called him out to the living room and casually said, "What does this mean?" He responded with, "I'm just so tired of being yelled at."
My heart just broke. HE looked broken. He looked sad and his eyes were vacant. And what blows my mind is I have offered to switch his class and he will quietly say, "No, I am fine." I have repeatedly assured him that if we switch classes, there would be no repercussions. No one would be angry with him and he would not get in trouble or hurt anyone's feelings if we did. He still kept saying he was okay.
We received the assessment tool from his teacher for evaluating ADD. I have zero idea how they score it, as it's based on her assessment, mine, and Ethan's father. They combine them and somehow figure out if a child has the diagnosis or not. All of ours are negative on the questions pertaining to overly active or impulsive but they are all completely positive for everything else, including the inability to focus, lack of organization, inability to complete a task and stay on task, etc. I just feel deep down I know where this is going, and it is very uncertain territory.
Tomorrow is parent/teacher conferences. The planner is coming with me so I can bring it up. He also starts his counseling sessions tomorrow, and the planner will come with me there as well, along with all the documentation from his pediatric specialist.
I don't know what the "right" answer is. Some might say the answer is blatantly clear: get him into a better environment and see what happens. Others say that you can't pick and chose the different people you encounter in life, and this is one of thousands of challenging situations he will encounter and he needs to learn to cope. I am somewhere in the middle. I get angry, then I get sad. I get frustrated, then I get motivated. I get annoyed, then I get sympathetic. It fluctuates nonstop and I just don't know what is "right."
Parenting handbook, you out there?