Kylie (Paula Lane) and David (Jack P Shepherd) are in for a shock next week when Max is diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).
In scenes to be shown on Monday 4 August, the doctors give their verdict on Max and tell Kylie and David that he needs to be referred to a child psychiatrist for assessment. Although she’s told that the condition is perfectly treatable and most likely caused by a genetic disorder, Kylie is left shaken by the news. So will she able to cope with the diagnosis? Actress Paula Lane tells us more…
Before she goes to the doctor, Kylie must know that something is wrong with Max – why is she in denial? Kylie thinks that Max needs putting on the right path. She’s certainly not got it in her head that it’s anything medical, not until David puts the idea there anyway. She thinks it’s maybe his age or the way he’s been brought up and that she needs to rectify it in some way – maybe by improving his diet or making sure he’s getting enough sleep and things like that.
How has she been coping when Max misbehaves? She hasn’t been coping very well, especially now there are two children to cope with. And then there’s the Nick situation in the background and everything he has going on with Leanne. So that’s taking its toll on the Platts as well. Kylie feels as though her back is constantly up against the wall with it all.
And how has David been coping? David’s been really good about it all. He’s the one who brings the issue up with Kylie, whereas she’s been trying to just deal with it. He’s tried to get her to see the light that, actually, maybe something isn’t right. Kylie’s was getting exasperated with it – she feels like she’s tried everything with him but nothing’s working. Max just has so much energy, all of the time.
When does the penny drop that something must be done to help Max? Kylie’s in denial for such a long time, but it’s been slowly building up and getting to her more and more. She gets to the point where she’s had enough and knows she can’t cope. She’s tired and weary all the time, her appearance goes out of the window and she’s just not herself . She’s so preoccupied with Max she has no time for anything else. Max is also starting to embarrass her in front of other people on the Street, so she feels like the whole of Weatherfield are talking about it!
What are her greatest fears – is she scared Max will be a bad person or that he’s always going to have so much energy? There’s a scene where Kylie reveals a few of Max’s real father’s character traits and she doesn’t paint a good picture of him. He comes across as a real bad lad. So Kylie and David do have those concerns that Max will go the same way and has some of the same genetic traits as his dad. She’s also worried that he might have to be on medication for the rest of his life and is also concerned about how he’ll manage at school. She really doesn’t want Max to be isolated from the other children his age.
What can you tell us about Max’s dad? He abandoned them when Max was tiny but kept trying to come back into their lives. The last Kylie saw of him was on Granada Reports for a vicious assault on a judge and they’d thrown the book at him. He’s fearless, he’s scared of nothing – so when Kylie tells David all about him, you can see David is really worried.
Does Kylie feel like a failure because she can’t control Max? She always feels like a bit of a failure. Her confidence drops if ever something goes wrong. She’s always on the defensive, but ultimately she does feel like this is all her fault.
How does Kylie feel when Max is diagnosed with ADHD – has she ever heard of it before? By the time the child psychologist comes to assess him, she already kind of knows. She’s seen for herself how he’s been behaving and she’s started to put the pieces together. So she’s prepared for it before the diagnosis. Kylie’s really upset. This storyline is great because it’s not a disorder you hear much about and it can be misinterpreted, so I’m glad we’re addressing it.
Michael seems able to reach out to Max – how does she feel about that? There’s a scene where he gives Max an ice lolly with no additives in it and I think Kylie is quite touched by that. She’s happy because it means Max doesn’t have to do things differently to other children.
But is Kylie worried that Lily has to take a back seat because Max needs so much attention? She worries all the time that one of them might be suffering. Her mind is going into overdrive and she feels as though she’s juggling too many balls all at once. She needs to try and keep calm and deal with one thing at a time.