Parenting a Child with ADD/ADHD

 

Children who have ADD/ADHD can have a really tough time fitting in the world. As parents there are a lot of things we can do to help, making things less frustrating for the child. ADD and ADHD can affect more than just the child who suffers from it, it affects the whole family. Managing this takes effort and planning, but it can be done. You can empower your child and help them channel that energy into a positive direction – reducing stress for everyone involved. The sooner you address these problems the better of your child will be.

I often hear people talk about ADD or ADHD like it is some terrible disease. In fact it isn’t, it’s just that your child’s mind works differently from the majority of others. I think drug therapy should really be a last resort, and it can do more harm good down the line than. I’m not saying drug therapy isn’t an effective treatment, I just think that too many people are focused on that instead of finding a way for your child to deal with his own mental state. Often people with ADD/ADHD think at a much faster pace and need to find ways of utilizing their own special temperament – instead of trying to force themselves to be like those without this condition. Below are some tips on dealing with ADD/ADHD.

Stay Positive

Often you and your child can feel overwhelmed when facing the challenges of ADD/ADHD. This can often lead to feelings of despair and hoplessness when things get really bad. This is why it’s important to have a system in place for keeping a positive attitude to achieve your goals. This is true with most difficult situations that require constant upkeep.

Step back from the situation – it’s important to make sure and keep things in perspective and realize your child isn’t purposely trying to sabotage you. Bad behavior is related to these disorders, and it’s not on purpose. Also remember that if the child isn’t behaving as you’d like, that maybe it’s your strategy that is at fault. Keep your wits and sense of humor intact. Many times you’ll be able to look back and laugh at the time that your child ran outside naked to avoid taking a bath, just not right away.

 

Be willing to compromise – sometimes you have to choose your battles and take things as they come. If you expect too much you will always be disappointed. This doesn’t mean settle for less, just understand that you can’t fix certain behaviors overnight, so you may have to be a little relaxed sometimes when it comes to what you expect your child to do.

 

Have faith – if you believe in your child and you are diligent, there’s nothing you can’t overcome when it comes to dealing with behavior. You need to have faith that your child can learn to manage their behavior as long as you are providing the right kind of guidance.

 

Take care of yourself

You need to be a good example for your child. Don’t try to do too many things at once or you may not be able to have the type of emotional control that the child needs from you. This falls in line with keeping a good perspective. At times, when we are in the thick of it, you may not be able to breathe and realize that screaming at a manic child will do nothing more than exacerbate the situation. You need to have a system in place to make sure you are prepared to handle things, because it’s definitely not easy. Here are some tips.

Take care of yourself – sleep hygiene, proper diet, stress reduction and taking care of your general health are big parts of being prepared to handle a child with ADD/ADHA. Taking care of yourself is a great way to set a good example.

Get help – we can’t do it all on our own. Find support from those who are going through the same situation. Talk to professionals or find a support group. Sometimes talking to someone who understands can make all the difference.

 

These tips are intended to help you better manage a child with ADD/ADHD. My brother growing up as well as my daughter has been diagnosed with ADD and one of the biggest things I realized is that taking care of myself was important. This wasn’t easy though, it meant I had to learn how to schedule time when I could actually get away for an hour or so to exercise, play guitar, vent to a friend etc. The main thing is to realize that there are tons of ways to channel your child’s energy into a positive direction. Many people with ADD/ADHD are simply wonderful human beings who are highly successful once they find the right path. Everyone needs to figure out their own recipe for what works and a large part of that has to do with experimenting based on other people’s suggestions.