We sometimes forget the kinds of challenges our ADHD kids face – even if we face them ourselves! We get so caught up with their incomplete chores, backtalking, homework battles… situations that frustrate and anger us – that we forget there’s a reason behind them. I know I get worked up when I’m not careful!
When we become so focused on our kids’ intense emotions, sometimes we forget that they are struggling and need our support.
How can you step back and see the bigger picture?
- Realize it’s not “disrespect.” When your kid lashes out at you, is she being disrespectful? Or are her emotions running wild? She may be so fixated on anger, fear, frustration, or anxiety that she literally forgets that she wants to be respectful.
- Handle it with compassion. Rather than viewing it as your kid being “bad,” remember that she’s having difficulty managing her emotions. When you think about it with that in mind, it’s easier to deal with charged situations calmly.
- Remember emotions are normal! We can’t stop them – nor would we want to. Emotions are part of the richness of life. Focus on strategies for managing intense feelings in constructive, healthy ways. Reinforce that it’s ok that your kid is mad; she just needs to deal with it in a way that does not hurt other people (like yelling or melting down).
Here’s the big picture: you’ve got a good kid. Sometimes her emotions get the best of her. It happens – to her and to you. When you see it for what it is and stay supportive, you may just find it happens less and less.