Being a parent is a tough job, and being a parent with ADHD just adds to the challenge. But as any mom or dad knows, the rewards far outweigh the costs—and having ADHD doesn’t change that. With creativity and determination, you can find solutions for any extra problems ADHD may cause. And if you happen to have a child with ADHD, you’ll have a leg up on knowing how to help.
Below are some common hurdles—and ways to get over them:
Organize daily schedules. If you’re like most people with ADHD, you find it hard enough keeping track of your own plans. Keeping up with the kids’ schedules, too, makes it that much harder. Day planners and to-do lists are the busy parent’s best friends. Make a master schedule for yourself, and teach school-aged kids to carry their own day planners, too.
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Friendships, family relationships, and romantic bonds can be hard. In a relationship, you need to be attentive, careful, and thoughtful. But when you have ADHD, you’re often inattentive, forgetful, and impulsive. Follow these solutions to help you connect with others effectively.
Relationship Rx: When making plans with friends or your significant other, always confirm what you heard. Inattention can cause you to miss pieces of information. Say, “We’re going to meet Thursday at the bistro on the corner at 7 p.m. Did I get it right?” Set your cell phone to alert you before you’re supposed to be there.
Relationship Rx: Hyperactivity makes it hard for you to sit still. As a result, going to movies, concerts, or the beach may not be right for you. Get creative. Map out hikes or bike rides and pack a picnic. Cook a meal at home together. Join a recreational sports team if you’re both interested. The important thing is that you share an experience that you both enjoy.
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