When I first met this ADHD student, she couldn’t look me in the eyes. She ran into me like someone was chasing her. She started our first Integrated session staring at the floor. A few semesters later she was presenting at her College Honors Day and other events. She has since graduated and been accepted into a Masters level program. This from a student who had once been running scared all her life!
This young man was arrogant. “I don’t need help,” he said at our first session. “I don’t know what I’m doing here.” I replied, “I don’t know either.” We both had a good laugh and then got started on the first step to coping with his High Functioning Asperger’s – rebuilding his fractured self-esteem. Taunting classmates had called him a “mental retard,” causing him to recede deeper and deeper into his shell. But with encouraging strategies and coping skills he slowly emerged, sometimes laughing and sometimes crying, but working persistently on his studies and his homework. Today he jokingly calls himself a “mental retread" and is knocking down A’s and B’s in most of his courses.”
CHARLES* ADHD and GAD
Three previous colleges flunked this seemingly bright ADHD and GAD student, not because he couldn’t do the work, but because he “forgot” to show up for class or turn in his homework on time. Our planning and time management techniques not only improved his academic performance but his personal life as well. He used to feel "tired all the time" and frequently complained about his teachers and his roommates. Now he has developed solid study skills and is doing well in his academic and his social life.
Despite Dyslexia, this student was content to cruise along and just pass with C’s. “Isn’t that good enough?” she asked. “After all I’m Learning Disabled.” She never aimed higher and consequently never achieved more. She was not dumb, not incapable, yet she felt like a loser. With the Integrated Tutoring approach she began to blossom. She smiled more, started focusing on her future, aimed higher, and took on more challenging assignments. She competed for a desirable internship, won it, and on completion was hired for a job as soon as she graduates. No more “C’s are OK.” She’s now an A class performer in class and life.
EDGAR* Slow processing
This student’s LD challenge was “slow processing” combined with a chronic physical
illness. He thought of himself as a professional victim. “I can’t do too much...
I’m afraid. I’ll fail if I try...People will understand.” Our counseling sessions convinced him
that “people” really don’t understand LD. What they do understand is effort, ambition,
achievement and eventually Results. He learned to challenge himself and to excel.
“ I surprised my Mom. She thought I was weak. I can do a lot more than anybody thought,
or even that I thought. I surprised my teachers too,” he glowed. “Some don’t even believe
that I have a Learning Disability.”
* For the privacy of students described here, real names and pictures have not been used.
New York Center for Learning Disability Counseling 646-490-8866 / firstname.lastname@example.org