Advice for ADHD Parents Raising ADHD Kids

Advice for ADHD Parents Raising ADHD Kids

Raising children is tough. Having ADHD and raising children with ADHD is really tough. In this week’s mini podcast episode, Dr. H responds to one dad looking for help.

“I have ADHD and four of my children have been diagnosed with ADHD by their pediatricians. I wish I were a confident guide for them about how to thrive with this condition, but instead I’m a mess… What can I do to make sure they are best prepared to thrive when I can’t show them by example?” 

Ned offers reassuring advice that’s applicable to everyone facing a similar struggle. 

Books mentioned in this episode: Delivered from Distraction

Superparenting for ADHD

Can you relate to what Dennis wrote? Let us know what you think. Email [email protected].

Thanks to our sponsor, OmegaBrite Wellness! Ned takes their supplements every day. Distraction listeners, you can SAVE 20% on your first order with the promo code: Podcast2020 at OmegaBriteWellness.com.

Click HERE to learn more about our sponsor, Landmark College, in Putney, Vermont. It’s the college of choice for students who learn differently.

Distraction is created by Sounds Great Media. Our producer is Sarah Guertin and our recording engineer/editor is Scott Persson.

Check out this episode!

A transcript of this episode is below.


Dr. Ned Hallowell:
This episode of “Distraction” is sponsored by OmegaBrite CBD, formulated by OmegaBrite Wellness, creators of the number one omega-3 supplements for the past 20 years. OmegaBrite CBD, safe, third-party tested, and it works. Shop online at omegabritewellness.com. And by Landmark College, offering comprehensive support for students with ADHD and other learning differences. Learn more at lcdistraction.org. Landmark College, the college of choice for students who learn differently.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
Hello, and welcome to “Distraction”. I’m your host, Dr. Ned Hallowell. Today, I want to respond to a question we received from one of our listeners named Dennis. And, by the way, we love getting these questions. Dennis wrote, “Hello, Dr. Hallowell. I have ADHD and four of my children ages 15, 13, 10, and eight have been diagnosed with ADHD by their pediatricians. I wish I were a confident guide for them about how to thrive with this condition, but instead I’m a mess. I was diagnosed at age 37 after having developed anxiety, depression, and a panic disorder. All the kids have taken Ritalin, but none takes it regularly because of the way it suppresses the appetites of the two oldest.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
The current pediatrician sees no problem with not taking it as long as they are doing well in school. My wife is inclined to use the same gauge for the necessity usefulness of the medication. But, I have seen my kids lose confidence and joy as they’ve aged, and I’m sure it’s partly because of typical ADHD woes. I think they just hide the effects well, as I did when I was a child. What can I do to make sure they are best prepared to thrive when I can’t show them by example? Should I try to get them under the care of an ADHD expert? If so, how do I even find one? I’ll appreciate any suggestions you offer. Dennis”.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
Well, first of all, Dennis, I think you’re a whole lot better than you think you are, just judging from the letter you wrote. You’re a caring, attentive, loving father. And I think, like an awful lot of adults with ADHD, you sell yourself short. And you don’t need an ADHD expert. They are hard to find. I don’t know where you live, but the most reliable way is to go to the nearest medical school and go through the department of child psychiatry. That’s where most specialists reside, in medical schools and department of child psychiatry. But, failing that, just get one of my books. Honestly, not to peddle my own wares, but they’re very good. And I would get “Delivered from Distraction” or “Super Parenting for ADD”. Either one of those would have more than you could possibly need or want. “Delivered from Distraction” or “Super Parenting for ADD”. And read those and you’ll become an expert, not only for your kids, but for yourself.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
And learning about this condition is the single best way to master it, to turn it from a liability into an asset. And that’s the goal. I don’t treat disorders. I help people unwrap their gifts. And the way to do that is to understand the condition, the ins and outs, the nooks and the crannies, like a Thomas’ English Muffin, which I had one this morning. A lot of nooks and crannies, a lot of little holes, a lot of interesting terrain in the world of ADHD. And the more you can understand it, the more you can anticipate the pitfalls and take advantage of the upsides. Regarding medication, I think you’re wrong to say don’t bother with it as long as you’re doing well in school because they may still be struggling even though they’re putting up good grades. You can be number one in your class and be struggling, not be performing as well as you otherwise could.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
It’s like needing eyeglasses or driving on square wheels. So, I would not use grades as a gauge of whether or not you need it medication. However, I would work with your pediatrician, or whatever doctor you do see, to find a medication where you have no side effects other than appetite suppression without weight loss. So, you have to eat. And the best meal to pig out is breakfast. Have a high calorie breakfast: eggs, pancakes, bacon. If you’re in a hurry, make a shake with yogurt and ice cream and some frozen fruit or fresh fruit, whatever, and some powdered protein. You want to get some protein in for sure. But, 80% of the time you can find a medication regimen where you have no side effects other than appetite suppression without unwanted weight loss. And then you should take it every day.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
In fact, you’ll want to take it every day because it’s nice having eyeglasses instead of having to squint, or it’s nice having round wheels instead of driving on square wheels. So, I would learn about the condition, read my books. If you want to find an ADHD expert, go to the nearest medical school, the department of child psychiatry, and then work with your doctor to find a medication regimen where you can take the meds every day, including weekends, without side effects, just with target symptom improvement. And if you do that, confidence will rise because it’s nice to do well. And if they’re doing okay without medication, imagine how much better they can do with medication. And, again, the anxiety and depression that so often accompanies ADD is usually due to the fact that the ADD itself is not well-treated. You feel anxious because you know you’re missing stuff, and you feel quote/unquote depressed because you’re underachieving, you’re frustrated, and it’s disheartening to underachieve, not do as well as you know you could do.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
I hope that answers your questions. They’re very good questions, and you are a very good dad. Thanks so much for writing in, and keep us posted. Let us know how this goes. Well, I want to, once again, thank you to our sponsor, OmegaBrite Wellness. I’ve been taking their omega-3 supplement for years and recently started their CBD supplement as well. OmegaBrite products, I trust them because I know the woman who’s in charge of the company, a Harvard Medical School graduate. She’s very fussy about quality, efficacy and is always looking to make sure that the product she has is the best in the business. And “Distraction” listeners can save 20% off their first order with the promo code “podcast2020” at omegabritewellness.com.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
All right. Remember to reach out to us with your questions, thoughts, and show ideas, just as Dennis, who wrote in. We love to get your questions. We will answer them and keep you informed and up-to-date. To do it, to send us an idea or a question, send an email or a voice memo. Those are great because we can play them on the air. Send an email or a voice memo to [email protected] That’s the word “connect” at distractionpodcast.com. And check us out on social media. We’re on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. We’re working hard to develop much more of a social media presence, so help us out with that, would you please? “Distraction” is created by Soundscape Media. Our producer is the wonderfully perfect and estimable Sarah Gertin, and our recording engineer and editor is the brilliant, talented Scott Persson, and that’s “person” with two S’s. I’m Dr. Ned Hallowell. Goodbye for now.

Dr. Ned Hallowell:
The episode you just heard was sponsored by OmegaBrite CBD, formulated by OmegaBrite Wellness, creators of the number one omega-3 supplements for the past 20 years. OmegaBrite CBD, safe, third-party tested, and it works. Shop online at omegabritewellness.com.

Share:

3 Comments

  • I here kellet Posted October 31, 2020 5:36 pm

    In many states there are educational therapist that work with children with many learning differences. Look at th Association of Educational Therapists. Many specialize in ADD and executive functioning problems. I think a support system outside of the parent is very helpful. I like Ver my students who have ADD – many are very bright and have unique with AFS of figuring things out. They do need support with organizing their classes and their time. Good Luck!

  • Sarah Guertin Posted November 3, 2020 3:37 pm

    Thank you for your comment. That’s a great suggestion!

  • Trackback: Informative (& encouraging!) Podcasts - Real Life O.T.

Add Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *