Today’s guest author is Shiyi Zang. Shye splits her free time between writing the novel that was supposed to be completed in 2015, doodling in her sketchbook and mastering the fine art of Cup Noodles. She is going to tell us all about parenting a child with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
To think the nightmare ends with beams of yellow sunlight is to believe that the children are brushing their teeth without screams or tears. And to think that rainy days are peaceful is to dream of their preoccupation with colouring books and classic movies. Raising a child to their full potential is a consuming and rewarding journey. There are good days and there are bad days, then there are rainy days where nothing goes right. For parents of children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), those days demand them to be everything and everywhere. At times, it feels as if the sky will never stop thundering, but there are many ways to bring out the sun.
Bring The Sunshine
That’s what we all need on a good day much less a bad one. It’s easy to get into a mood and lash out with the lightning when feeling overwhelmed. Negativity breeds like dark clouds, and when raising children with ADHD, that simply will not service. Nagging tongues only begets rolling eyes as children with ADHD respond much better to reward than punishment. Tackle daily obstacles with a positive spin and tailor routines to adapt to their needs. For example, rather than a full 5 minutes of time-out, offer them a chance to reduce the time to 3 minutes if they are willing to sit quietly without complaint. A compliment or two afterwards to encourage like behaviour will instill a sense of pride and accomplishment. Their need for warm, positive attentions is truly the greatest leverage.
A little rain can bring out the most beautiful flowers and the same goes for parent-child relationships. Have a good time, learn new skills and grow together. Focus on activities that are new to both of you and discover what works best for the team. There is no magic cure for children with ADHD, only time and patience, and trial and error. Take a holistic approach to daily activities – work on colourful puzzles together to improve concentration and problem solving skills while practicing relaxation therapy. Just as children with ADHD grow, learn and adapt, so must the parents. As a result, the whole family benefits.
Nurture Their Strengths
It’s easy to be distracted by the hustle and bustle of everyday life and neglect the simple truths. With enormous and unforgiving social stigma enforcing the notion that children with ADHD are rambunctious, misbehaving and even hostile, it is crucial to challenge the popular belief. Slow down and take the time to reflect on their strengths. The common approach is to sign them up for sports or other physically demanding activities, but there are numerous other ways to take advantage of their natural curiosity and energy in a cozy environment. Legos and small invention kits are perfect for their active minds and restless fingers while improving their fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. If they enjoy playing pranks and being the center of attention, harness their flair for dramatics with magic tricks. Not only does it develop their ability to follow directions without becoming easily frustrated, but cultivates confidence and overall self-worth.
Spring Showers Not Thunderstorms
No one likes being caught in a thunderstorm without warning and while life is unpredictable and inconsistent, training children with ADHD should never be. In fact, it is vitally important to maintain daily structures and expectations to guide them through their developmental years and beyond. Although parents of children with ADHD need to be flexible, committing to one strategy or technique such as early bedtimes for dinner tantrums, achieves better results than heated negotiations and promises of desserts. Just as farmers rely on steady spring showers to bring their crops to fruition, children with ADHD require consistent attention and effort to reach their full potential.
There is no better ending to a rainy day than a colourful rainbow across the sky. The world is cast in a bright new light filled with promise and hope. For children with ADHD, it is important to encourage them to be themselves and define their own potential in brilliant, untraditional ways. Easier said than done, parents should be attentive to their children’s unique thoughts and behaviour and tailor standard parenting techniques to each individual child. Only then can they sit back and watch them shine.
At the end of the day, time spent together is time well-spent. However, despite the inevitable satiation, perhaps the greatest misconception of raising children with ADHD is that parents are inexhaustible and readily available. With so much to consider and so much to learn, any spare time is heaven sent. And to take advantage of such, child disability tax credit is nothing short of cloud nine.
Shye is a Content Writer for Disability Credit Canada. Shye has worked with dynamic editorial teams, advertised for small businesses and polished academic essays. She identifies as a member of the Deaf community and is lucky enough to initiate conversations about accessibility and workplace prejudice. You can also connect with her through Twitter.
I got really excited when Disability Credit Canada reached out to me for a guest post on this topic. I know this topic will help families with the struggles that they are currently facing with parenting a child with ADHD and guiding them to help them reach their full potential. I really found this post very informative and enlightening. And I hope you did too.
If you loved this post, don’t forget to pin it.
We hope that you liked this post and found it helpful. Do you have a child with ADHD? What did you think of the tips listed here? What other tips would you share to other families who are currently facing the same challenges as you do? Let me know in the comments. You know I love to hear from you.