Parenting a child with ADHD can be dis-stressful…
These survival tips can help you cope, even on the most difficult days.
Another morning, another scene: Your child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) won’t brush his teeth, get dressed, or at breakfast, and the school bus comes in 15 minutes. Your meeting starts in an hour, and you have a 30-minute commute.
It’s an understatement to say that, at times, life can be a challenge when you have a child with ADHD. On top of this, parents often blame themselves for their child’s impulsive, aggressive behaviours.
In the stress (it’s really dis-stress) of the moment, it can be easy to overreact, but lashing out at your child or blaming yourself helps no one, says Billi Bittan, PhD, an ADHD coach and therapist in private practice in Tarzana, Calif. Parents need to take care of themselves first to be able to help a child with ADHD. “Like the fight attendant says: Put the oxygen mask on yourself first and help your child,” Brittan advises.
7 – Survival Tips to Help You Cope:
Here’s how you can help yourself cope, even on the most difficult days:
1. Learn as much as you can about ADHD:
The more you know about ADHD, the better you can deal with your child’s behavior and help her to succeed in life. You will feel empowered if you know what to do in various situations, especially when your child acts out. Resources about on the Internet and in bookstores. Write down your questions and take them to your child’s next doctor or counselor appointment.
2. Don’t think you have to do it alone:
Seek professional help, especially if you’re feeling depressed and frustrated or exhausted by your parenting responsibilities. Join a support group for parents of children with ADHD. Sharing ideas and listening to others have a support group in your area, think about starting one or join one online.
3. Stay calm:
Remember that even when you’re having difficulty controlling your child’s behavior, you can still
control your own. Getting frustrated and angry when your child doesn’t listen or is forgetful won’t help. It will likely only make maters worse. You’re child’s role model Bittan says, so act the way you would like her to act.
4. Schedule “me” time:
You need to pay attention to your health, both physical and mental, to be better able to take care of your child. You can’t take care of your child if you’re sick, Bittan says. Take time each day to do a favorite activity, whether that’s reading a book, doing yoga, or talking on the phone. Eat right, exercise, and manage your stress. Taking advantage of my individualized HealthTest© to make sure you’re not nutrient deficient which can certainly affect your emotions, may be the best first step in taking care of YOU!
5. Focus on the positives:
Make a list of all the things that are positive, valuable, and unique about your son or daughter. The more you believe that your child can learn and succeed, the more likely it will be to happen. Think about this list every morning when you wake up, and you will start your day with a smile.
Again, if you’re nutrient deficient you can cope so much better. I would also suggest that you start to journal – get out all the yuck of each day – make this part of your health program – it was one of the best things I learnt to do and still do it today.
6. Have realistic expectations:
If you set high expectations that your child won’t be able to achieve, you’re seeing him – and yourself – up for failure. “You wouldn’t ask a child in a wheelchair to climb the stairs to his room,” says Bittan. Know your child’s limitations and don’t expect the impossible. “You can raise the bar,” she explains, “but do it slowly and be sure to celebrate the achievements your child makes along the way together.”
7. Simplify your life:
As a parent of a child with ADHD, you automatically have a lot on your plate. Don’t agree to take on more outside duties than you can handle. If you limit your commitments, you won’t feel as harried and will be better able to concentrate on what’s important for your child.
While parenting a child with ADHD can be dis-stressful, focusing on the positives, seeking support from others, and taking care of yourself can make your job easier and more rewarding.
I believe that the most important thing you can start to do immediately which will make incredible changes is to change your household food plan. For more information check out my blog yesterday and when you get your own HealthTest© report you personal food program can become applicable to the whole family – how great is this offering?
For all parents who are dealing with ADD and ADHD, first let me tell you how proud I am of you for having to learn how to make your life right for you both Mom and Dad, and maybe even a brother or sister – when you do it together the rewards will be seen by all of you, and the benefits will be the rewards of how you’ve changed – when you see your child living better – which of course benefits everyone.
I hope these last two days have given those who are dealing with these issues some hope and a road for more answers. This is all and always about –
Planning for Tomorrow’s Good Health – TODAY!™