Hi Meltingpot Readers,
As if we didn’t already gnash our teeth over the fact that French women don’t get fat even though they eat cheese and French children aren’t picky eaters and French men are just really good at bringing the sexy even when they look like Gérard Depardieu. Now we have to contend with the fact that French children don’t get ADHD.
Even though this article was written last year on PsychologyToday.com, it just appeared in my Facebook newsfeed last night so I read it. The first line had me intrigued: ” In the United States, at least 9% of school-aged children have been diagnosed with ADHD, and are taking pharmaceutical medications. In France, the percentage of kids diagnosed and medicated for ADHD is less than .5%. “
How can that be, I wondered? In a nutshell, it’s because Americans define ADHD as a chemical imbalance where the French see the disorder as a result of environmental factors. Please read the article for yourself and assess the author’s argument. Personally, I think it is a slippery slope and kind of careless to suggest that French parenting — aka superior parenting — is the reason French kids don’t have ADHD. Because that argument then implies that American parenting is so bad that we have spawned a generation of kids with severe mental disorders.
That being said, as a true meltingpot mama, I’m always open to learning how other cultures raise their children, especially if they seem to succeed in ways that we Americans consistently fail. Of course, nobody is perfect. And no single culture has a lock on perfect parenting and this seemingly constant holding up of the French as ‘perfect’ can be annoying. And please don’t get it twisted. I’m not hating on the French. Naturellement pas! I’m just annoyed with the silly Americans who think emulating the French will solve all of our problems — from belly fat to annoying kids. Come on, people.
Okay. I am done. If you have anything to add, you know I’m listening.
Make it a great Monday.