Help For The ADHD Mom & Child

Sometimes it is fun...

Before my oldest was born 17 years ago I read my first book about parenting. It was called “Raising Kids That Turn Out Right.” It was a good book. I read a few more over the years. I liked Dr. James Dobson too, and when child number three came along I picked up his book “The Strong Willed Child.” Yep. Number 3 was a bit more of a challenge. The first two were boys, and although they did give me a run for my money some days, they were pretty calm and easy to deal with compared to number three.

My girl is a beautiful and delightful child when she is in a good mood, but then there are the moods! The hormonal unbalances are nothing compared to all of the acronyms. ADHD, ODD and a few more I can’t even spell the initials. Even though I had been a Pastor for 12 years and a family advocate with dozens of cases nothing had prepared me for the “fun” that was headed my way!  I had to learn to laugh in the trying times, and operate in love in the middle of chaos and there was a whole lot of chaos. This gal puts the DRAMA into Drama Queen. I needed a whole new education just to cope. I had to learn all about ADHD and how I was literally dealing with the brilliance and creativity of a scientist one moment and then the cross over to evil genius the next.

The ADHD child is a riddle. Boys are different than girls too. Often they are more easily spotted because they jiggle about and have obvious trouble focussing, but with a girl it may not be so obvious. The distraction may be more in her mind. She is daydreaming in school and has trouble completing her assignments. As parents we think, “It can’t be ADHD, because my child is sooooo smart.” We don’t understand that a child with ADHD may be very intelligent. They may be Mensa material in fact. The ADHD child will be completely not interested and unable to focus in one area, but so ultra focused with a spirit of perfection in another area.

My daughter is very creative. Since she was 8 she could prepare a whole newsletter that looked like I did it and I am now a marketing professional by trade. However, math for her is a totally different animal. We can’t even get her to put an answer on the page to tell where she might land for a grade value. She is an amazing artist, loves to sing, and has “the moves.” But she is a terror to get out of bed in the morning and the Oppositional Defiance Disorder has some other perks that I won’t even get into here.

Structure is helpful to the ADHD child. What happens though when  Mom has ADHD too? Yep. That’s me. And worse, I am single. Single mom, making a living and supporting three kids while operating with ADHD. (That should be an advertisement in the personals – lol). No problem until the kids need the meals to be at the same time every night and clothes to be ready for school the next day. I know, I  know… Moms who do not have ADHD are shaking their heads in judgement right now thinking I should just get it together but ADHD doesn’t work that way. The button for structure is missing. So there is no point in getting upset with us. It is just not there. It wasn’t there for my mom and it isn’t there for me either.

The good news for parents today is that there is help. There are books to read, counsellors to be had, and an abundance of good materials to equip us. We can’t just change because of our ADHD, but we can learn a few more tools and then we manage a bit better.

Recently I ran into this one and it has me rather excited to give it a try. It is an online program that is about to launch it’s pilot project here in Calgary. It is designed to be fun and interactive for the whole family and it reinforces all kinds of good values and self-confidence.  But the best part for us is that it helps build a little more structure into our lives and that is really important for me and my ADHD daughter.

Me In A Tree is good for anyone with kids, but for those of us who have a child with ADHD I believe it is going to be a tool we will soon not want to be without. Check it out yourself, and let your friends know too. They are only taking a limited number into their free pilot project.

Click here to learn more!

 

This article was written by Kerry George who is a single mom of three children and a serial entrepreneur. She is the CEO of Loyal2U Email Marketing and Social Media as well as the owner and CEO of the Calgary and Cochrane Business Network. Kerry has written articles and blogs for a variety of online and print publications including Today’s Business Woman Magazine and the book “Juicy Fruit Christianity” still available on amazon.com.

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “Help For The ADHD Mom & Child

  1. So, your daughter looks to be what, 5-6 years old? And I notice that you’re playing some X-box…

    Look, I don’t want to judge, but I would suggest that video games are not a good activity for any kid this age, let alone one with ADHD. Not to mention television either. I’ll go out on a limb here and suggest that your kids watch some on a regular basis?

    Again, I don’t know your personal situation. But many (I would even say most) parents in my experience as an elementary teacher allowed their kids to watch TV regularly from an early age and allowed things like video games to occupy much of their early years.

    This is the big tragedy of kids; the parenting.

    • Actually that is just a photo from clip art. My daughter is a teenager now. She was not allowed to watch hardly any television most of her formative years except for a few carefully selected family based movies. And the program being recommended is not a “video game” but an interactive family activity that builds parental bonding and stronger healthier relationships in the home. For an elementary teacher you do not seem to be well informed about ADHD, nor do you seem to recognize the value in the books that I mentioned therefore I can only assume that you have not read them. One of the tragedies in being a parent with a child with these issues is the condemnation that happens at the hands of others because of statements like the one that you made. If I had not raised two healthy happy and productive boys I might have fallen prey to such wounding criticisms. Or if I had not been an advocate in the system for a dozen other parents with children with similar problems I might have melted in guilt and overwhelming emotions unable to cope as many that I have seen in these difficult situations. However, I have read a lot about ADHD and am not uninformed. I have never been a perfect parent, but I am secure enough to know better than to allow such condemnation to affect my spirit.

      ADHD happens. For whatever reason it is there. Parents with ADHD kids need to know “YOU are not a bad parent!”

      I could have ignored this comment but I chose to post it because I have been there when the teachers attacked the parents, and the professionals insisted something must be wrong at home. Thankfully that did not happen to me but it did happen to other women that I seen first hand. Fortunately it is happening less and less as more is being learned about ADHD but it still happens sometimes as we see in the comment. The school where my daughter attends is very supportive. They were part of the testing and analysis and they have worked with us to find solutions, but many parents have not been so lucky.

      I have seen ADHD in families where everything was done right. The parents were very watchful over the children’s activities, diets were carefully followed, no questionable video games or television programs were allowed, there was structure and love and everything that could be asked for. Mom stayed home, a solid income was provided, meals were on time and yet the behaviors of ADHD were still continually a challenge.

      If you have a child with ADHD you need to know others have been through this too. You are not alone.

      • Well done reply! I’ve been “in the ADD trenches” for so l-o-n-g now I can get a bit “testy” when new well-intended but not-really-very-well-informed individuals ring in with advice that really doesn’t help much (and CAN harm, as you so gently point out) — so I think I’m gonna’ send ’em all YOUR way from now on! 😀

        Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CMC, SCAC, MCC
        – ADD Coaching Field co-founder –
        (blogs: ADDandSoMuchMore and ADDerWorld – dot com!)
        “It takes a village to transform a world!”

  2. Pingback: ODD & Oppositional Rising « ADD . . . and-so-much-more

  3. Pingback: Overfocusing: Cognitive Inflexibility and the Cingulate Gyrus « ADD . . . and-so-much-more

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s