Mindful Parenting for ADHD

Mindfulness may add more than you expect to ADHD care.

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Your child has ADHD. He impulsively acts out; he struggles in school; he seemingly won’t settle down for even one second after you walk in the door to let you catch your breath. A visceral hook grabs hold, and you do the same old thing you’ve always done: you yell, you retreat, you set another rule, or you bend one. Then you mentally berate yourself for not staying calm or your child for not doing as he was told.

Challenging as it is, we are all capable of being mindful, such as staying fully aware of something unpleasant and pausing before responding. Your impulsive child is going to be impulsive today, even while you work on a longer-term plan for change. Avoiding the reality that you’d like something to be different without being proactive about it won’t change anything. But while you sort through the next best action to take (or perhaps decide not to say or do anything for a moment), your child will benefit when you drop the often unconscious assumption that life can be any different that it is right now.

Because ADHD itself increases family stress, it makes it harder for you to manage your…