ADHD – Naughty Boy Syndrome

05Apr08
During my work as a police officer I get to deal with a lot of young people as suspects for offences. The area that i work in tends to be decent suburban streets and reasonably nice villages. The suburban areas a are mostly bordered by city council estates.

The youths from the villages come from decent families who are pro-police and the parents are generally ashamed or at least sorry that their well brought up son or daughter has had reason to be spoken to by the police and do not like the fact that a police car has been parked outside their house because they are worried what the neighbours might think.

The families of the estate children are often different. When I go knocking on their door I am usually greeted by the mother who has 4 kids and is on disability for some obscure reason, usually stress. I ask if they are the are the parent of Little Johnny to which they shout up the stairs "Johnny, get f*cking darn ere naw, there’s a copper wants to see ya!"

If its an offence that can be dealt with at home by voluntary interview I explain to their "Mam" what Johnny has been up to to which Mam usually says something along the lines of "He can’t help it he’s got ADHD innit"

When I grew up in the 80’s & 90’sI had never heard of ADHD or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder . Kids who were naughty were just naughty. This was either blamed on their upbringing or just down to the fact that they were a little sh*t. I was allergic to artificial food colourings and if I ate bright yellow or bright green sweets I would become hyperactive and be a little sh*t towards my parents. Therefore my parents knew not to give me bright coloured sweets. Simple; good diet, stable family life, normal kids.

To date I have not come across a child from a nice middle class family who’s parents have used the excuse their child has ADHD to justify the criminal act they have committed. They just accept their child did wrong or deny their child would ever have done what they have been accused of (because the sun shines out of their backside). But when it comes to societies lowlifes from the estates who live on a diet of junk food, have never tasted a fresh vegetable and think Pot Noodles really are healthy because they only have 5% fat and contain added vitamins and minerals their child always suffer from ADHD??!

There are many people who are sceptical to ADHD’s actual existence as a genuine mental illness. I discovered this within 2 minutes of Googling the word "ADHD" and I tend to agree with them. From my own personal experience as a police officer dealing with scrotey kids from the estates ADHD seems to be an excuse to justify a poor upbringing for thick kids who skive off school and live on a diet of chips pizza and ‘sketty hoops.

I am not saying that the disorder does not exist and I do not claim to be a mental health expert (despite being able to detain somebody under the mental health act without any real training whatsoever) but when ever I come across somebody who claims to suffer from it they are usually a PYO or about to be labelled as one, they have been permanently excluded from school or they just don’t go to school any more and they live in a scanky council house on some rough estate and they are dyslexic . If it is a true mental disorder why do I never come across kids from nice families suffering from it?

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10 Responses to “ADHD – Naughty Boy Syndrome”

  1. 1 Central User

    I understand your cynicism.

    My Nephew has been formally diagnosed with ADHD, is one of very children at his school who has been Statemented (a Statement of Special Educational Needs) and he is actually quite bright.

    He is being brought up in a traditional middle class household, with proper family values. So long as you have his attention he is delightful, but I imagine that he is a nightmare at school and he is incredibly impulsive.

    The lad is adopted and has been with his Mum & Dad since he was 2 (for most of his life). From shortly after he was born until he arrived at his new home he was under the care of social services. We have a strong suspicion that his birth mother was under the influence of un-natural substances while she was carrying him, but the truth is, we’ll never know.

    This is a truly complex subject and I merely comment to draw attention to the fact that whatever the apparent circumstances, there will always be the exception to the rule.

  2. 2 Pc Bobby Dazzler

    Central User thank you for your comment. I fully agree that there are always exceptions to the rule and I do not dispute that the condition does exist. My post was to highlight that so many kids from lower class backgrounds who are always in trouble seem to use ADHD as an excuse for their behaviour. I think that it is diagnosed to these children to lightly as a get out clause to avoid sorting out their diabolical behaviour. This post is only based on my own experiences and I am not stating that it applies to all situations.

  3. 3 blueknight

    No one is saying that ADHD/ADD etc does not exist. The point is that when the Police hear about someone having ADHD, 99 times out of 100, it is a mother from a sink estate using as an excuse for why her ‘innocent’ son has committed a crime or acted in an anti social way.
    Is the condition more prevalent amongst the ‘sink estate’ children? Perhaps yes, but may be only because that section of society live on a junk food diet and drink and take drugs to excess. – Or perhaps the mothers really are using ADHD as a convenient excuse for their children’s behaviour.

  4. 4 Roland

    I am a Police Officer of some years, my wife a teacher, we live in a small rural town which I also work in. Neither of us is or has ever been drug users or heavy drinkers. We have four children, all brought up in a manner that I suspect you would approve of. There is a strong moral sense of self responsibility, good diet and plenty of activities – as outdoor biased as I can make them. We have four fairly healthy children. One of whom we are told has ADHD. He can be incredibly polite, thoughtful and attentive. He can also be a right royal pain in the backside both at home and school. He is not ‘normal’ and it lies well outside ‘naughty child’ parameters in terms of violence and motivation.

    A few months ago I was in some training in Police HQ when your viewpoint was strongly put by some of those present. I left, too upset to continue. I should probably have argued and won some embarrassed sympathy but wasn’t after that.

    Yet I too see parents, largely as described, using it as an excuse for unnacceptable behaviour. I am however convinced that the syndrome exists – I have seen it.

    It is a truly horrible experience being lumped in with some of our regular ‘customers’ which I feel sometimes happens.

  5. 5 Chris

    Bobby,

    I read this with interest, as you seem to reflect my personal opinion on these matters. You inspired me to post about it myself.

    I’m liking the blog, so keep it up, and from one newbie blogger to another, welcome to the community!

    Chris

  6. 6 Rick

    Its all bloody nonsense. Just another ‘its not your fault’ label. If I was a Doctor I would prescribe a good skelp to the arse 3 times a day, that would sort them out.

  7. 7 Anonymous

    There is currently a theory being played out in the USA where ADHD is considered to be a form of autism – an abnormal brain malfunction (which no one can ascertain the cause of) – which leaves the sufferer looking at the world in a slightly different way to the rest of us (the alleged normal ones). The social problem is that so many parents who couldn’t give a monkeys about the welfare of their kids (as long as they continue to bring in the child benefits, tax credits, etc), using ADHD as an excuse for their parental neglect. As long as there is a medical condition they can claim their kids have, it not only abrogates any possibility of regret they may have over their treatment of their little darlings, but may also increase the amount of cash they parasitically suck from the State. For many years, prior to my retirement, I dealt with such kids (and parent – usually only the one) and have no idea what the answer is. Unfortunately, I quickly learned that a report to CPS, the Crime Desk or Social Services that “the offender is a juvenile whose parent(s) claim(s) to be suffering from ADHD and for which he/she is receiving prescribed medical treatment. Your advice on any further action to be taken would be appreciated.” Nine times out of ten the reply would be to ‘bin’ the job and the aggrieved advised accordingly. Now that I’m (thankfully) out of it I can leave it to some other poor soul to deal with these cases. Having juest re-read ‘Brave New World’ (one of my favourite stories) I can only imagine that someione in the maternity unit either failed to give the appropriate vaccination or gave it twice.
    Good blog. Keep it up.
    Plodnomore

  8. 8 Anonymous

    wouldn’t it also be sensible, for the long term, to determine if ADHD is genetic in origin, and if so, work to reduce breeding? Perhaps it is, and there is a massively higher proportion in the ‘trouble’ families because..well…it’s in the blood? I seem to recall the discovery of a violence gene (where individuals with the gene sequence were very very predisposed to attack others) in a scandinavian study not too long ago.

  9. 9 Chris

    Anonymous,

    How very right wing of you!

    (Not that I wholly disagree!)

  10. 10 David

    I recently had the fortune to arrest a violent male who had been fighting in a local pub. He was trying his best to fight 4 Police officers and eventualy got sprayed, cuffed, pinned etc. Before the wagon could arrive I was met by his enraged mother who was going to sue us all as we had arrested her little boy (6 feet tall, 20 years old and still trying to fight the world). She stated it wasn’t his fault it was all due to his ADHD. My retort “What’s the problem then, there are 4 of us paying him attention”.

    Personally I believe ADHD exists and have some personal experience in it. However I truly belive that for every authentic case that needs medical treatment, 99 cases exist that are due to poor diet and lack of parental oversight. Interestingly ADHD is no longer fashinable any more. It’s now cool to have ODDS (I won’t do as I’m told). Look it up it’s ridiculous.


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