The Black Church and ADHD

The black church

The Black Church , African Americans are more likely to be diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) than any other group. While the exact reasons for this disparity are unknown, one thing is for sure: the way that the black church has handled—or, more accurately, mishandled—the issue of ADHD has not helped. In fact, in many ways, the black church has made things worse. Let’s take a look at three of the most harmful ways that it has contributed to the negative perception of ADHD.

The Black Church

  1. The Black Church Hasn’t Acknowledged That ADHD Is A Real Disorder
    The first way that the black church has hurt the perception of ADHD is by refusing to acknowledge that it is a real disorder. For far too long ,it has written off ADHD as nothing more than “bad behavior” or a “lack of discipline.” This harmful rhetoric has led many black parents to believe that their children’s ADHD symptoms are simply a matter of poor parenting and that they should be able to fix them with a stronger hand and stricter discipline. As a result, black children with ADHD are often subject to physical punishment and emotional abuse in an attempt to “cure” them, which only makes their symptoms worse.
  2. The Black Church Has Blamed Parents for Children’s ADHD Symptoms
    The second way that it has contributed to the negative perception of ADHD is by blaming parents for their children’s symptoms. This is especially harmful because it can cause parents to doubt themselves and their ability to parent their child effectively. It can also make parents feel like they are somehow responsible for their child’s disorder, which can lead to feelings of guilt and shame.
  3. The Black Church Has Ridiculed People with ADHD
    Lastly, the black church has also ridiculed people with ADHD, calling them names such as “stupid,” “lazy,” “good-for-nothing ,”and/or “possessed with demons.” This kind of name-calling does nothing but damage self-esteem and further isolates individuals who are already struggling with a difficult disorder.


It needs to do better when it comes to handling the issue of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). By refusing to acknowledge that it is a real disorder, blaming parents for their children’s symptoms, and ridiculing people with ADHD, the black church has only served to harm the perception of this already misunderstood condition. If the black church wants to help its parishioners, then it needs to start by educating itself on what ADHD is and how best to support those who live with it.

Many Black churches have active youth programs. These programs can be vital for children and adolescents with ADHD, providing a supportive environment where they can develop social skills and engage in positive activities.

Remember that while the Black church can provide valuable resources and support, ADHD is a medical condition that often requires professional evaluation and treatment. Combining both community and medical support can be an effective approach for individuals and families.

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