What do we do when my spouse and I disagree about a discipline plan for our child?

Uncategorized Oct 12, 2018

How do we handle discipline in our home when my spouse and I disagree?

This is such an important topic for at least two reasons.   1.   Consistency in discipline is very important  for children with ADHD.  2.   Parenting children with ADHD is stressful.   In fact, parents of children with ADHD are twice as likely to divorce before the child reaches age 8 as compared to other parents.   You need each other! 

Here are some tips to make a plan that works:

  1. Nurture your own relationship, and get away occasionally.   
  2. Check for understanding by mirroring back what your partner is saying before reacting.  
  3. Parents should both become as informed as possible about ADHD, and attend all meetings, important diagnostic appointments, etc.  
  4. Make decisions together and compromise, if necessary, so that you can agree to enforce the rules and provide consistency.   If necessary use the House Rule worksheet available here.   Each...
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Should I tell teachers that my child has ADHD? I am afraid that he/she will be labeled.

Uncategorized Oct 11, 2018

I completely understand this concern, as I shared the concern when my daughter was in her early elementary years.   I remember being anxious about the start of each new school year.  I knew that within a couple of weeks, I would hear one of two things from the teacher.   “I love having your daughter in class.  She is so enthusiastic and has so much to add to discussions, etc.”   or “She can’t stay in her seat, and if she is sitting, she rocks in the chair and tumps it over at least once a day.   She shouts out answers.  Her desk is a disorganized mess, etc.”  Of course, I dreaded having the teacher that only saw her “negative” characteristics.   But once I got a report like this, and I would meet with teachers, I realized that the teacher was just frustrated and looking for answers.    I knew my child well, and had many suggestions to offer.   As a mama lion, I never liked...

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How do I deal with my child's intense emotional outbursts that come with ADHD?

People with ADHD can go from 0 to 100 on the emotional scale, whether that be anger, frustration, sadness or joy in a split second.   When intense emotions take over the brain, we call it an amygdala hijack.  The amygdala is the emotional center in the brain and when overloaded,  can trigger an irrational, emotive response.  Fight or flight hormones are secreted, the body tenses, heart rates escalate, etc.   It is a full SIX SECONDS before the rational side of our brain kicks in.

The challenge is to find a way to help your child wait those 6 seconds so that they can respond more appropriately.   I have two techniques that have worked at my house.   The first one is for younger children and the second one is for older children and teens.   

The one for younger children is a more effective version of the simple counting to 10 that you may have already tried.    When I tried teaching my son to count to 10, he  would count...

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Are Expensive SAT and ACT Preparation Programs Worth the Price?

Are SAT/ACT Preparation Programs Worth the Expense?

The pressure is on high school students to get higher and higher standardized test scores to gain admission into top schools (many of which are public universities).   Many sign up for expensive test preparation programs (some as much as $1,800) and take both the SAT and ACT four or more times each in hopes of raising scores by even a few points.   Is the cost to you as a parent and stress to your teen worth it?   

Does a prestigious school pay off? 

First of all, if the goal is to attend an elite school, think carefully about your reasons.   If you want your teen to attend an elite school because you believe their earning potential will be greater upon graduation, think again.   The Wall Street Journal reports that there can be a big difference in earning potential for liberal arts, or even business majors, but for those majoring in fields such as education, science, math, engineering, or...

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