What have I done wrong? What could I have done wrong? Why would I have changed schools? These are just some of the questions parents of a child with ADHD have. In fact, coping with the day-to-day can be exhausting, so it’s not uncommon for some parents to wonder if they’ve done something wrong or contributed in some way to the development of ADHD in their child.
However, parents of children with ADHD should know that they are not responsible for the disorder. In reality, ADHD is a problem that has a strong neurobiological determination, so there may be a genetic component or small brain alterations at its base.
Obviously, a family environment disorganized and violent can accentuate ADHD symptoms, but never trigger the disorder. Therefore, neither divorce, nor changing schools, nor couple arguments, nor the birth of a younger sibling can cause this disorder. However, the educational style that parents put into practice can contribute to improving this problem. Therefore, instead of looking for culprits, it is better to focus on changing the patterns that can cause an improvement in the symptoms.
5 tips for raising a child with ADHD
1. Discover the child’s limits and abilities
The first step in helping a child with ADHD is to accept the disorder and understand her behavior. It is important for you to be aware that many of their inappropriate responses are not intentional. In fact, most children with ADHD misbehave not because they want to be annoying, but because they don’t know how to behave or because they can’t help it. It’s also essential that you learn to focus on their abilities. Every parent should be aware of the limitations of their children but it is even more important that they know their potentialities and stimulate them.
2. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of the family
All children, especially young ones with ADHD, need an organized and controlled family environment. The first step is to analyze the main weaknesses and strengths of the family, in order to be able to draw up an educational plan according to the needs of the child. You must pay special attention to the family organization in terms of schedules and activities because children with ADHD need a very structured environment. Also, value the family climate and the relationships established between members, you may need to apply some changes, especially considering that the adults who live with the child are their main role model.
3. Promotes good family communication
Maintaining good communication is not only beneficial for the child but for all family members. Plus, it’s a great strategy to teach him some social skills. In fact, it is known that when children with ADHD maintain fluid communication with their parents and trust them, they have a healthier self-esteem and will be able to face problems with greater confidence. The key lies in making the child feel heard and, above all, understood.
4. Set clear rules and limits
Follow the rules is one of the pending subjects of most children with ADHD. Therefore, you should start applying them at home. The important thing is that you establish rules that are understandable and that you are consistent in their application. It is not about becoming rigid parents, but it is essential that children understand that there are a series of limits that they must not exceed and that they have certain inescapable responsibilities, either within the family or at school.
5. It enhances their autonomy
The child with ADHD must learn to control their behavior, so it is essential that they develop a certain degree of autonomy and responsibility. The first few days can be very difficult since it is likely that he will forget to do his homework or organize his room, but if you persevere and help him, little by little the child will gain autonomy and responsibility.