What is it like being a parent of a child with ADHD or similar learning difficulties? If you are reading this then you probably already know but this interesting paper What Do Parents of Children with Learning Disabilities, ADHD, and Related Disorders Deal With? looka at the issue from an academic angle. It covers the problems in identifying learning difficulties, the emotional cost for parents in facing the fact their child has problems, the ongoing day-to-day stresses and presents possible strategies for parenting.
It is often confusing to parent children with learning disabilities, ADHD, and related disorders. One of the biggest confusions and challenges parents face is the large hiatus between what the children can do and what they cannot do. Often they are very smart, know a great deal, and reason well, yet cannot read or write. School teachers and family may be telling them to try harder, and they are usually trying their hearts out. They tend to work 10 times harder than everyone else does, but still they may be called lazy.
Another aspect of the confusion for parents lies in how hard it can be to distinguish between a child who can’t do something and a child who won’t do something. For parents, it can be vexing not to be able to control a 5 or 6-year-old or to know whether to push an adolescent or reduce expectations. In this confusion, parents tend to ask, What is wrong with me? rather than What challenges is my child having to face?[emphasis added] Shifting this focus can be therapeutic for parents and children
See also: Parenting and ADHD