For parents with a child with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD or ADD), frustrations can be at an all-time high as they can’t control the disorder. But one thing they can control are the symptoms and their triggering factors. How a parent will react to a child with ADHD is also controllable. There are tips on parenting kids with ADHD. All you have to arm yourself with is the patience to make it through the day without having to lose your sanity.
How To Help Your Child With ADHD
One of the deficits of a child with ADHD is the executive functions. It means that you have to help guide your child in things like controlling his impulses, honing his memory skills, and practicing his flexible thinking. These three matters are what comprises a child’s executive functioning, and most ADHD children are low in their executive skills. As a parent, you have to help him improve on that.
It’s unavoidable for the symptoms of ADHD on your child to cause you some embarrassment or annoyance, especially when out in public. But remember that ADHD kids would instead do what their parents tell them. They don’t exactly know how to do it. You need to prompt and guide them on their behavior.
If you’re frustrated with the effects of the disorder on your child, then, it goes both ways. Your ADHD child is upset about it too. Reacting to this negatively won’t help. Try to respond to your child positively and patiently.
ADHD And Your Family
The symptoms of ADHD affect not only the parents but also the whole family. This behavior of the children with ADHD can cause family conflicts and disagreements. For siblings, their ADHD brother or sister in trouble. The relationship of siblings with their ADHD brother or sister is most likely to face challenges.
Moreover, a child with ADHD may get almost all the attention while the sibling may be scolded often – “You have to understand your brother. He has ADHD. You need to adjust since you’re the one without a disorder.” These can cause feelings of love with jealousy and resentment towards the child with ADHD.
It can be exhausting to keep up with your ADHD child. This can then end up with you being exasperated and irritated with the child at times. The behavior may be too much to handle. It is also difficult for some people to accept or understand your child.
But then again, you are a parent. All you can do now is to love your child no matter what. There are also two things needed in parenting a child with ADHD and helping him manage his disorder – your compassion and consistency.
More Ways For Parents To Cope And Help Their ADHD Child
Stay positive and be healthy. The parent should be the one to set the limits and control the symptoms of ADHD positively.
Maintain a positive mental attitude. The best skill to use in challenging situations is one’s common sense. It will help you to be calmer, which in turn can resonate with your child and calm them as well.
Keep things in perspective. Your child may be embarrassing at times especially when in public, but remember that your child is innocent of his behavior. You’ll have to make him aware and let him cope with it.
Don’t sweat the small stuff and be willing to make some compromises. Set realistic expectations for your child and appreciate the small achievements.
Believe in your child. Make a list of the positive qualities of your child. Use this list to empower him and to assure yourself that in time, your child will become a mature adult.
Don’t forget self-care. You are your child’s most significant source of strength which means your physical and mental state must be in tiptop shape always. It is too overreaching, yes, but you are a parent of a special child. You’ll have to work twice if not thrice as hard. Now, if you’re on the verge of burnout, take a rest. You can solve everything in one day, anyway.
Seek support. There are people around you who can extend support like your child’s teachers and other parents with ADHD children, as well. The best support that you can get, though, is counseling or therapy. Family therapy often helps those families with an ADHD kid as their child or sibling.
Take a break. You might feel guilty about asking help in taking care of your ADHD child but remember that everyone deserves a break. You need this once in a while.