Joey Pigza Loses Control by Jack Gantos
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Joey Pigza has ADD (or something that makes him hyper), and usually he has a patch that keeps him grounded. But when visiting his father (who has a similar condition, but has always self-medicated with nicotine and alcohol), his father pressures Joey to go off his meds. Joey loses control.
There isn't much to say about this book except that I feel like I have a better understanding of what kids may feel like with unmedicated ADD (or whatever it is). I understand that for some kids this really is a hormonal imbalance that leads to a disability, and for Joey that really seems to be the case. (He likes himself better when he's on his meds, he's able to sleep, he makes better decisions, etc.) But for some kids it's not, and this book gives no context or explanation or balance to that side of the argument, even though I think Joey's dad may believe the medication is preventing Joey from being who he "really is". I think this is a series and maybe there was a book that came before in which Joey was diagnosed and this was discussed. But it's not in this one.
So yes, this book gives a pretty good idea of what it's like to need medication to be able to focus. But I think there's more to the issue than what's presented here.