The Child Who’s “Not That Bad” by Jane Hersey

Most people believe that the child who has severe problems will be the hardest to help, but this generally isn’t the case.

When a kid’s behavior is extreme and when learning or health problems are too obvious to be ignored, everyone’s efforts are spent in seeking answers and not denying a problem exists. If diet makes a significant difference, if the response is dramatic, then relatives, teachers, neighbors – and just about everyone else who comes in contact with the child – will do what they can to cooperate. What’s even more important is that the youngster, himself, has a terrific motivation to stick closely to his diet, and most of them do.

The belief that it’s harder to help a child with an extreme behavioral reaction is based on the false assumption that the child’s behavior is due to some physical or chemical abnormality. But the child who goes out of control when he drinks a glass of synthetic “fruit punch” is likely to be different from the next child only in the degree of his sensitivity.

It’s very hard to hear someone say, “I thought about the Feingold Diet, but my child’s not that bad.”

Feingolders have long puzzled over a way to respond to a statement like this. Thus far we’re speechless.