In My Own Words: Living with ADHD

May 9, 2024

Parker, Children’s Hospital Colorado Patient Ambassador


I first came to Children’s Hospital Colorado because I was having a lot of problems, like getting angry, sad and frustrated. I just wasn’t acting like myself.

We visited Children’s Colorado, and I was diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety. Children’s Colorado helped me by giving me strategies to help with my ADHD, including using fidget toys and breathing, and recognizing when I’m starting to feel uneasy. I still go there to get help and manage my medication. And it isn’t always fun having doctor appointments after school, but I always feel better afterwards.

I would tell anyone who is struggling to reach out and get help by telling their parents. Getting help can be scary but everyone at Children’s Colorado is really nice. I’m thankful for my parents and Children’s Colorado for getting me help because I’m happier now and feel like myself again.

Ashley, Parker’s Mom:

As parents, our hearts broke seeing our sweet boy struggle every day. Driving back and forth to Denver for therapy appointments was not benefiting anyone. However, once we were able to establish care with the Children’s Colorado Therapy Care Telstar location – just 10 minutes from our home – we began to understand ADHD and anxiety, and how it presents differently in each child because not all kids are the same.

With every visit, we became more comfortable with sharing our struggles and successes as we learned strategies to help Parker be less frustrated and sad. A few sessions in, Parker was begging us to leave so he could have his session with his therapist, DeAnne, and would proudly come into the waiting room with his picture or telling us about how he learned to recognize his anxiety when his tummy hurt. 

There is a stigma associated with mental health, but Parker’s story is meant to help change the narrative around getting help and the benefits of mental health services. We are thankful to have caring mental health professionals at Children’s Hospital Colorado in Southern Colorado who want to help kids and families live their best life.