I’ve got no people.

Please pardon the pun I’ve taken from the tax commercial, I just couldn’t help myself.

There’s nothing that can be more lonely or isolating than being a parent with an ADHD child.

I’ve said it before, it’s vital that parents like this must have a support system outside of family and the established friendship setup.

When you have an ADHD child you quickly learn who your true friends are and yes, this includes family.

When Drew was growing up, our experience with family and friends was a nightmare. Not many of our family members and friends could understand or would try to understand Drew’s disability.

Yes, Drew was wild, I mean he was literally the Tasmanian Devil personified. When people saw us coming they immediately remembered that they had something else to do or there was somewhere they had to be.

My first reaction would be to get offended.

Of course I did!

Deep down inside I was screaming for relief myself but understood their reactions.

But, on the flip side, I couldn’t understand how family or friends couldn’t or wouldn’t lend a hand to help me.

So, my feelings were hurt when, suddenly “poof”  they’d disappear. As a matter of fact, sometimes I swear, I saw dust trailing their heels.

Drew was loud, aggressive, destructive — who wouldn’t high-tail it when they saw us coming. He’s 26 now and people still look for a way out when they see him coming.

Just because we’re a parent doesn’t mean we’ve resigned from the human race. We’ve got feelings, wants, desires. Most of all we want understanding and compassion.

We want people to understand that our ADHD enegizer bunny isn’t a bad child. We want them to understand that these kids are loving and sensitive people whose brain short-circuits, making them leave the planet.

Parents of ADHD children [POAC] don’t want to or need to here the usual idioms:

  • “He’s a bad child”
  • “All he needs is a good spanking”
  • “Tell him to shut-up”
  • “Can’t you make him sit still”
  • “Can’t you teach him some manners”
 No, we don’t want to hear that! We know our children. We know that they have a condition and if these family and friends truly love us, they’d try to understand and be more compassionate.
Reality sets in and what we want from people usually won’t come through so, what do we do.
What I did was: turn them off or turned the volume down.
I started treating them as I did Drew when he was on or is  on one of his verbal rampages.
Then I began to isolate him [NO, I’m not suggesting anyone do this] I’m just relating to you what I did because I had no other support system educating me.
These days there are therapies supplemented with medication and diet that helps children interact with society.
Back in my day, all Drew had was the meds. I worked so much I didn’t have the time or the energy to keep him in counseling.  I know this sounds like an excuse but this is how it was with us.
You POACs of today, don’t give up on family and friends. The information is out there and people are now more educated.
My suggestions on dealing with family and friends[this is an unprofessional opinion, I’m not a therapist, I’ve received my Doctorate from Living ADHD Life University :p]:
  • Don’t get frustrated — breathe, breathe deep and slowly release before any interaction with them.
  • Don’t argue with them — their minds are made up you can’t change it.
  • Forgive them — [for they no not what they do] oops… sorry Lord I’m not making light of your word but it’s true.
  • Only interact with them, if there’s a place for your child to go and run off steam [that’s if your child isn’t on any meds]
  • Don’t buy into their ideas — they don’t live with you 24/7 they haven’t a clue what you go through
  • Most importantly, don’t feel guilty — NOTHING is your fault — you have nothing to feel guilty about. When some people smell fear and guilt, they tend to capitalize on those feelings and make jibes at your parenting skills.

That’s all for today from Life ADHD University:)

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5 Responses

  1. Great post! I have an 11 year old ADHD/LD son. I’m enjoying your blog and have bookmarked it to return often. Stop by my blog if you get a chance: http://www.adhdguide.blogspot.com. Take care!

  2. Thanks Karla,

    It takes a lot of work to deal with people like these. Their lives are helter skelter and they take us along for the ride.

  3. Dee, I love your work! I have a 43 year old ADHD “child” and he still cannot keep his attention on anything for very long, including a career, a job, a wife, etc. I still hear comments about him and his raising. I have tried to tell him that there is excellent ADHD medication, but he will not consider it. His last remark was “That can become addictive”. I told him I thought that might be a good thing!

    Keep up the good work and take care of yourself. Karla

  4. […] BenReally interesting read I found today:Please pardon the pun I’ve taken from the tax commercial, I just couldn’t help myself. There’s nothing that can be more lonely or isolating than being a parent with an ADHD… Sometimes, they orbit the planet of Pluto but, … […]

  5. […] The Informal Matriarch wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptPlease pardon the pun I’ve taken from the tax commercial, I just couldn’t help myself. There’s nothing that can be more lonely or isolating than being a parent with an ADHD child. I’ve said it before, it’s vital that parents like this must have a support system outside of family and the established friendship setup. When you have an ADHD child you quickly learn who your true friends are and yes, this includes family. When Drew was growing up, our experience with family and friends was a nightmare. Not many of our family members and friends could understand or would try to understand Drew’s disability. Yes, Drew was wild, I mean he was literally the Tasmanian Devil personified. When people saw us coming they immediately remembered that they had something else to do or there was somewhere they had to be. My first reaction would be to get offended. Of course I did! Deep down inside I […] […]

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