Listeners Relate To Moms Juggling Kids And ADHD

Host Michel Martin and NPR digital news editor Tanya Ballard Brown comb through listener feedback to this week's recent conversations. Listeners weighed in on Tell Me More's segments about "enhanced interrogation techniques" and parents who manage Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Martin also gives an update on the "Anti-Homosexuality Bill," which was dropped Friday from Uganda's parliamentary talks.

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MICHEL MARTIN, host: And now it's time for Backtalk where we lift the curtain on what's happening in the TELL ME MORE blogosphere and get to hear from you, our listeners. With me today is Tanya Ballard Brown, one of NPR's digital news editors. Welcome back, Tanya, thanks for joining us.

TANYA BALLARD BROWN: Hey, Michel, thanks so much for having me again.

MARTIN: Well, before we start, we did want to give you an update. Yesterday we talked about legislation that's been debated in Uganda for a couple of years now that is intended to discourage homosexuality. At one point, sponsors of the bill wanted to impose the death penalty on gays and lesbians for certain acts, as well as stiff fines and prison sentences for others.

Leaders and activists from around the world have been protesting the bill since 2009. But Uganda's parliament had been expected to vote on a version of the bill today. However, the bill was dropped for parliamentary discussions for now. Tanya, what else?

BROWN: Well, Michel, this weekend in our parenting segment, you talked to mothers who had been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, or ADHD, and who also have kids with the disorder. In fact, it's when parents are seeking treatment for their children that many begin to suspect that they suffer from the condition too. Here's a clip from that conversation from our guest Jennifer Brown.

JENNIFER BROWN: My therapist at the time recommended that I read this book, "Driven to Distraction" and in it it had a list of 100 questions that you would be asked in the diagnosis. So I was reading it for my son and I got to about question 10 and I realized that I had said yes to all of them for me, and so proceeded to go through all 100 questions. And I think I said yes to about 93 or 94.

MARTIN: Well, Tanya, not surprisingly we got a lot of feedback from listeners who identified with these moms and their children, including one 51-year-old listener who does not want us to share her name, but she wrote in to tell us that after hearing the conversation, she realized that she has had ADHD her entire life without knowing it. She took the online ADHD quiz that the mothers were talking about. Her score was very high. She says she will now be seeking help with the disorder. So we want to thank this listener for sharing that powerful story.

BROWN: Also, Michel, in your weekly commentary, you asked what would happen if the U.S. government put as much effort into winning the international drug war as it did in finding and killing Osama bin Laden. And here's part of what you said.

MARTIN: The path to bin Laden went down many roads. Different strategies were attempted and abandoned until success was achieved. But success was achieved because we decided it mattered. It mattered to the world and it mattered to us. So why doesn't this war matter too?

BROWN: And listener Gillian Galloway(ph) posted this to our online forum. Bin Laden was one person, his motivation ideological and his fighters radicalized, religious extremists. In comparison, in order to win the drug war, we have to prevent every single person in the United States from using illegal drugs and misusing legal drugs. That means we have to change the behavior of millions of fellow Americans. The vast majority of whom are neither radicalized, nor extreme, but instead of perfectly normal, often successful people.

MARTIN: Thank you for that, Gillian. Last week we also had a conversation about whether it was acceptable to use enhanced interrogation techniques if it led to the capture of someone like Osama bin Laden.

BROWN: Michel, you talked to former Bush administration official John Yoo, who defended enhanced interrogation techniques. You also spoke with author Karen Greenberg. She's the executive director of NYU's Center on Law and Security. She said there's no proof that those coercive methods work better at getting valuable intelligence.

In a response to those conversations, Michel, listener Pat Morgan posted this on our website. Our military and CIA can torture or enhanced interrogate whom they want, all they want, as long as they and all the Americans that agree with and support the use of torture realize that the enemy, whomever it is, will do the same to any Americans they capture in any location in any country at any time.

MARTIN: Well, thank you, Pat and thank all those who weighed in this week. And thank you, Tanya.

BROWN: All right, thank you, Michel, for having me.

MARTIN: And, remember, with TELL ME MORE, the conversation never ends. To tell us more you can call our comment line at 202-842-3522. That number again, 202-842-3522. Please remember to leave us your name. You can also find us on Twitter. Just look for TELL ME MORE, NPR.

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