Bullying and ADHD

Unfortunately, many kids with ADD/ADHD get bullied in school. This can relate to them seeming ‘different’ to the other kids – due to their inattention, hyperactivity or impulsivity. It can also stem from kids just being rude, mean and schools not creating the right environment to stop bullying.

Phoebe Prince was a girl who was born in the UK and moved to Massachusetts. She is a young woman who committed suicide in January 2010 after several months of severe bullying at her school. Her death led to significant reform to the laws of Massachusetts around bullying. Its unfortunate that a youth had to die to get these rules implemented. It’s even more unfortunate that many states and many other countries don’t have strong rules against bullying despite the terrible outcomes that can happen.

A recent online newspaper article advocates that parents need to get involved and get active when their kids are being bullied. It describes the situation with a boy with ADHD who just couldn’t take the name calling any more and just broke down. In this case, the school got involved, and the boys mother helped to keep her son safe.

Bullying is a major problem in general – and specifically in ADHD. In my office, I often hear about problems that kids are having around bullying. In general, I find that the nature of the outcome of the situation depends a lot on the individuals who are in the school’s administration. Sometimes policies that the board has are interpreted differently in different schools.

Do you have experience with bullying and ADHD?
What worked to help and what didn’t?
What advice can you share for other people who may just be starting to deal with this issue?
Please enter your comments below.


Dr. Kenny

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  1. I have been around and have raised 4 children I have seen many paretns who have either been told their child needs to be medicated, but the reality of it is all of the children I have seen with the title given to them “adhd” come from homes where the parents do not have the time or enrgy to properly take care, educate,love, and actaully spend time with their children. Our children need an outlet anymore, they need to be able to get out and move around most kids come home and sit in front of a tv and play video games which most of the time are violent, which in turn causes anxiety.
    Parents stop living the american dream and be a parent today!!!

  2. Mamabear,

    While I respect what you are trying to say, I am also the mother of a very well adjusted ten year old little boy who has ADHD. Its not a fair comment to say that children who have been labeled with ADHD come from poor homes or that ADHD is not a real diagnosis. As a parent of a child with ADHD we try to give him as much quality time in an environment that he feels secure in as we can. But for some of us, this is a very real medical condition. Not just something we come up with so we don’t have to be bothered with our children. And just for the sake of discussion. My son is not medicated!

  3. “Phoebe Prince was a girl who was born in the UK and moved to Massachusetts. She is a young woman who committed suicide in January 2010 after several months of severe bullying at her school.”

    I saw this video at youtube. I was wondering why she was bullied.since when I saw her picture, she was quite attractive. Even more attractive than those bullying here.

    But then again there are many reasons for bullying, and reason why bullies bully in the first place. Schools really need to take bullying as a serious case. Implement something – a rule, curriculum or whatever just to lessen the number of bullying in school.

  4. When I was young, kids who showed symptoms of ADHD were picked on in my school, but at that time, the term ADHD wasn’t used. I wonder if it happened more in the past because teachers/parents couldn’t identify the problem.

  5. I agree that bullying is a major problem today. I wonder why It couldn’t be stopped by the schools? I guess being bullied or bullying is just a part of growing up of a child although it can affect the emotion and mood of the child children can also learn from bring bullied and bullying. Just think about it. =) I’ve once been bullied before.

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