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Aylsham mother backed by comedian after her emotional video message about ADHD goes viral

Andrea Bell  Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Andrea Bell Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Archant Norfolk 2016

A mother’s whose emotional video about the stigma of living with ADHD went viral has secured the backing of comedian Rory Bremner in her bid to raise awareness of the condition.

Rory Bremner with Andrea Bell, who campaigns for people with ADHD. Picture submitted by Andrea Bell.Rory Bremner with Andrea Bell, who campaigns for people with ADHD. Picture submitted by Andrea Bell.

Andrea Bell recorded a six-minute outburst of frustration at how children with ADHD are “discriminated against” at schools, and the video has been watched by more than 100,000 people online.

It even caught the attention of Mr Bremner, an impressionist and comedian, who played the video during one of his gigs.

Mrs Bell, of Aylsham, has ADHD, as does her 14-year old teenage son Reuben Antunes.

She said she recorded her video after advice from Reuben and his brother Elliott, 12, who encouraged her to talk on camera about her frustrations over the lack of understanding about the condition.

In the video Mrs Bell says schools making children with ADHD sit still and concentrate is akin to asking a person confined to a wheelchair to start walking around on their legs.

“It amounts to bullying and abuse,” Mrs Bell said.

She also talks about the difficulties of getting children diagnosed with ADHD.

“Schools will report to parents daily that their child needs to focus, concentrate, sit still, and remember things - but when a child is being assessed by a paediatrician the school will tell the paediatrician there is not a problem,” she said.

“Parents are screaming out to be listened to.

“I’ve had so many parents contact me since I published the video saying they’re experiencing the same problems.”

After seeing her video Mr Bremner invited Mrs Bell to a gig he was holding in London, where he showed her video to the audience.

Mr Bremner, who also has ADHD, is a patron of national charity the ADHD Foundation.

“I loved going to London and meeting him, and it really helped get my message out there,” Mrs Bell said.

“I was over the moon.”

Meanwhile the team that provides ADHD services for adults in the county, run by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, is reporting high levels of demand.

Mrs Bell said she will be forced to wait for more than a year to see a member of the team for a medication review.

She runs charity ADD Norfolk, which offers a meetings for people with ADD (attention deficit disorder) or ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), and campaigns for more awareness and less stigma around ADD/ADHD.

More information on the charity can be found by clicking here.

7 comments

  • Alan and Carol both have it spot on. It's no coincidence that these supposed conditions of ADHD and dyslexia have appeared along with the decline in authority and education.

    Report this comment

    JacktheBeard

    Sunday, February 12, 2017

  • Alan Powell....I agree completely, I was in school in the 50's and children were exactly as you said. I have a friend who is an admin officer at a school, she tells me that 10% of the children are classed as special needs....basically she says children who will run riot given half a chance and haven't any respect for anyone in authority. In our time the slipper soon got them paying attention.

    Report this comment

    Carol Barnes

    Sunday, February 12, 2017

  • Is this a modern illness? I went to school for 12 years in the forties and fifties and have no recollection of ever hearing that disruptive and naughty kids had an illness. They were dealt with by detention, cane, or expelling. Sometimes they improved, sometimes they didn't, just like kids nowadays, there will always be some people who do not conform or obey the rules of society. Check out the prisons their full of non conformists.

    Report this comment

    Alan Powell

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

  • This is amazing Andrea you speak so honestly how it is I'm currently trying to get this exact sentence removed from my daughters target sheet which they are refusing to do. And if not enough work completed as she is noticeable zoning out she gets a lunchtime so unfair. Go Andrea you made me realise in a training session I was right in my concerns and so proud for you

    Report this comment

    Jennifer Ann

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

  • What is the point of a comment section if you're going to delete comments you don't agree with? Let people have a debate.

    Report this comment

    JacktheBeard

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

  • ADHD doesn't exist. It's a fantasy like 'dyslexia' or 'addiction'.

    Report this comment

    JacktheBeard

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

  • You mean you disagree with me. Explain why using facts and logic.

    Report this comment

    JacktheBeard

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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