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Parents with ADHD Kids: How do you keep your cool?

Let’s face it...when you have a child or children with ADHD, your life can feel pretty wild. 

Certainly there are wondrous and unique times with children who are exceptional learners, but there are also countless moments when you find yourself doing an inner pep talk, something like:

Keep your cool.
He/she doesn’t mean to drive me crazy.
Try to step into his/her shoes,
Don’t let this be about me.
Whatever you do, stay calm!

Figuring out how to stay grounded as you parent with ADHD can be a challenging everyday battle.

Here are 5 tips to help you call on your inner calm, even as the storm rages around you.

Parenting Facebook1. Be aware and in charge of your individual headspace.
Knowing where you are at (it can change by the minute!) is crucial when making any parenting decisions. Sometimes you have the bandwidth and other times you just feel at the end of your rope. Gauging your headspace is powerful in determining how your interactions will go with your children. Check in with yourself regularly, and make strategic decisions based on what you have in you.

2. Have healthy snacks with you on the go.
It can be really hard to stay on top of all the needs of those around you and keep yourself watered and fed. Plan to have some healthy snacks and a water bottle on hand throughout the day. It is important self-care and many parents find (in retrospect) that hunger and thirst are legitimate causes of feelings of frustration and “low” energy tanks. It just doesn’t feel like there’s time!

3. Know that your child’s struggles are not your fault (no matter what that lady at the park says!).
It can feel embarrassing to have your child acting in a way that is perceived as “different” to others that don’t understand ADHD. You might even feel as if you are being blamed for your child’s struggles. Sometimes, it can be hard not to feel like everyone is looking at you and judging you. In those moments, do your best to put the views of others aside and focus on your child and what you know works best for them. They don’t get it anyway and your child needs your acceptance most in these moments.

4. Share the load.
Find your people and “use this village”. Perhaps it is connecting with other parents going through similar experiences, or working with your partner to support each other in your journey. Find those voices that help you “fill your tank” and give you space to vent honestly and authentically. Work to be refreshed by your support people. Share often and with candour.

5. Try to minimize transitions.
Avoid the temptation to have your family committed to too many things. Where you can simplify, do it. Where you can allow more space for your child’s challenges with transitions, it will allow you to breathe more freely too. When you’re rushed and behind, it can just make it all “snowball”. Do less, and be more.


Join us this fall for a Springboard Online Parent Workshop: A Two Evening Mini-Series with Laura MacNiven

Springboard Clinic's Laura MacNiven is hosting a two session online mini-series for parents of ADHD children. In two 60 minute sessions, she will walk you through strategies like "being an ADHD detective, 5 steps to mindful parenting and picking battles before you need to". Offering an opportunity to take stock of where you are, and think about where you are going, these two sessions are designed to help you find new energy and a clearer headspace to take back to your everyday parenting.

Multiple family members are encouraged to participate, and this content is suitable for parents with children of all ages.

Note: Please set aside 60 minutes to do some reflective work in between the two sessions.


Session #1: 8 pm EST Nov 15, 2018
Session #2 : 8 pm EST Nov 22, 2018

VENUE: Online through Ontario Telemedicine Network (www.otn.ca)

FACILITATOR: Springboard’s Director, Laura MacNiven, M. Ed

COST: $50 per household, (includes powerpoint, mini-course manual)



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