I felt this was a very helpful and informative thread until it started to verge off on OT topics such as the alleged link between autism and vaccinations or state propaganda in government schools and violations of the forum rules such as calling the term gifted overused and useless or stating that a "globally" or "truly" gifted child couldn't have problems in school anyway.
No one is trying to stop anyone from thinking, but it would be simple courtesy to stick to the OP's problem, which is teasing apart whether her DD's problems stem from ADHD, lack of challenge due to a poor educational fit, visual processing problems, other sensory processing problems or some or all of the above. And now I'll shut up because I am not a moderator and I don't want to derail this thread any further either, and I really don't want to pick a fight or be negative or set an agenda in somebody else's thread.
Can we all get along and just go back to the questions the OP has been asking please? And to the fact that it has been established that her daughter has a serious visual processing issue, that has as yet (as I understand) been undiagnosed and untreated and that she has been told that giftedness cannot be established until it has - which also means, as several posters have pointed out now, that ADHD cannot be established until it has, because it is a diagnosis of exclusion. At this point, I'd truly throw all my energy into getting to the bottom of the vision issues because the child has already started first grade and the OP is already suspecting that it might stop her DD from making progress in reading and writing.
OP, I went over the vision chapter in "The Mislabeled Child" and it looks like it might be very helpful to you, because it focuses mostly on the kind of vision issues which aren't easibly detectable or "visible" to parents or even eye doctors, and has examples and exercises for parents to help them understand how their child might be seeing the world - and, of course exercises for the child. I'd get it ASAP - it also has a very informative chpater about giftedness and what it might masquerade as, and what ADHD really is and isn't (and is VERY sceptical about medication - which is something I think we can ALL agree on: don't let them push you into medicating your DD, the testers advocating this on the flimsy grounds they have sound really irresponsible!)
Edited to add that when we were at a point when we felt unable to tell whether DS's behavioral problems were due to giftedness, ADHD, sensory processing disorder or autism we sort of took a multicausal approach: we had testing done to rule out ADHD and autism, did a round of OT, instituted a sensory diet, reduced stimulation during the workweek, talked to the preschool teachers about challenge, structure and social stressors, checked out the food and sleep angle, really worked hard to make sure he had regular protein-rich meals to ward off reactive hypoglycemia, added supplements (vitamin D, fish oil, magnesium, zinc) to be calmer during the day and fall asleep within less than two hours of tossing and turning - I can't say which had the most input in making things better (and they got a lot better very soon) but I can tell you the thing which was least helpful: the negative resp. inconclusive testing for autism (ADHD was ruled out by the psychiatrist on the spot "if this is anything it's autism!" duh. It wasn't.
Edited by Tigerle - 8/25/12 at 2:16pm