Tuesday, August 11, 2009

School chair reform needed now

Cushioned classroom chairs could make a huge difference in the health of our boys, but who even thinks of this lateral idea that can obviate much medication and the medicalization of normalcy? The over-diagnosis of ADHD seems as bad today as it was a decade ago when thinking people started to be aware of it. It is particularly a control device used against boys, as the documentary, The Drugging of Our Children, shows. Symptoms such as "wriggling in his school chair" are hardly evidence of pathology, but characteristics of a healthy, normal boy.

If school wasn't so boring, and if school chairs weren't so hard on the less-padded bottoms of boys, my guess is that the majority of ADHD cases would plummet. I'd rather see school chair reform, and parents taking boys outside to play and burn off natural energy, than the wholesale drugging of a generation.

As one who wriggled his way through 13 boring, uncomfortable years of school, I thank the gods I wasn't born in the era of the pathologization of boyhood. I survived 13 years of wooden classroom seats -- but only just.



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