The mom who has it “together” is an idea that has been suggested to us by all sides. It’s an image of working in, very organized, clean, sitting at the table eating a home-cooked breakfast and having kids ready to go. Because of Bass, her house is clean, the laundry is done, and she always makes time for exercise and her family. This mother doesn’t actually exist, but it’s a concept we’ve all been striving for, and we’re told it needs to be emulated.
This expectation can hurt any mom, but especially for moms with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Today I want to talk to you about what it’s like to be an ADHD mother and how to find healthy ways to manage and celebrate your unique parenting abilities. increase.
Is ADHD common among women
Women are less likely than men to be diagnosed with ADHD. It is estimated that 3.2% of women will be diagnosed, as opposed to 5.4% of men.
Note that this data identified diagnosed cases. This is not an accurate representation of how many women actually have her ADHD.
There is a reason for this. One reason is that ADHD can manifest differently in women.
Also, because of societal expectations about how women should behave in society and at home with their families, women’s behavior masks their symptoms in a different way than men and boys. They are less noticeable and less likely to be identified.
Many mothers I have spoken to describe ADHD symptoms as being aware of them in their lives, but admit that they have not been formally diagnosed. These include expenses, wanting to “power through” and manage oneself, “not wanting to be labeled”, and fear of drug side effects.
How to manage ADHD as a mother
Whether formally diagnosed or not, mothers with ADHD present special challenges. The effects of ADHD range from mild to completely debilitating.
What is it like to be a mother with ADHD
To truly understand what it’s like to be an ADHD mother, you need to understand the symptoms and explore treatment options.
presentation of symptoms
ADHD symptoms are inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. Women are more likely to have internalized symptoms that may contribute to mental health problems.
Women are more likely than men to internalize and develop coping mechanisms that mask their symptoms. You may have missed that
This leaves women with adhd on their own to manage their symptoms. Unfortunately, left undiagnosed, ADHD can also lead to untreated mental health problems.
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Women with ADHD have the following characteristics:
- low self-esteem,
- easily overwhelmed
Fatigue from constant stressful conditions can make women with ADHD anxious and reluctant to make the necessary efforts to live life to the full. How you respond to your children when they are not fully focused, upset, or stressed can affect your relationship with them.
ADHD can make it difficult to manage important tasks such as paying bills, tidying up, laundry, childcare, workload, relationships, and other responsibilities. Important decisions and responsibilities can be completely overwhelmed if you can’t focus.
Being easily distracted makes parenting even more difficult. Getting to school on time, preparing lunch, teaching skills, spending time together can all be affected.
The pressure to “maintain the status quo” is intolerable. Parents can feel like a failure.
When to Consider Getting a Diagnosis
If you need support, are having trouble coping with challenges, or have a mood disorder, consider talking to your doctor about being diagnosed with ADHD. For a mother who has dealt with the complications of her ADHD on her own, the eventual diagnosis provided great relief and opened the door to adequate support.
Another aspect to consider is whether your child has ADHD. ADHD often occurs in families. Many adults with ADHD have children who are similarly diagnosed.
Raising an ADHD child while managing your own ADHD takes extra effort. Most mothers want the best for their children.
How will treatment change my family’s life?
As you consider your diagnosis, think about how access to treatment might help. Some services require diagnostics. Many women with ADHD receive treatment and support in the form of medication, books, support her groups, coaching, therapy, or a combination thereof. It can save lives.
Treatment can help:
- improve concentration,
- boost organization,
- Reduce stress for you and your child
- Make tasks easier and save time
- Build deeper relationships with children, husbands, wives, other family members and friends
- improve mental health
Most people, regardless of age, go through periods of depression. Environment is important. During the coronavirus pandemic, people with ADHD showed improvements in coping as some of their normal demands were lifted. I found it more difficult because my anxiety and lack of coping skills made it much harder to stay at home.
With professional help, ADHD symptoms in adults can be easier to manage or even completely alleviated. Alone mothers with ADHD who have less depression and anxiety can change the course of life and the environment in which they raise their children. You can break the cycle of generations over the years.
time with kids
One parent I spoke with told me that missing out on time with their children was their biggest fear and challenge when parenting with ADHD. In a world full of distractions and chaos, being disabled is difficult for anyone, but ADHD can take that difficulty to a whole new level.
Can I be a good mother with ADHD?
Some of the most distressing unrealistic expectations that society places on parenting are the ideals of being a good mother. I believe that no parent is perfect.
parenting hacks for ADHD
An out-of-the-box way of thinking is a common feature of Neurodivergent. ADHD often needs this skill. To be successful, parents can focus on what works for them and their families, rather than what society expects them to do. It looks like this:
- Design routines instead of schedules
- Visual timer settings
- hire a nanny
- Share responsibilities with other parents (use strengths)
- Create time pockets instead of deadlines
- Seek help from your child or partner
- Using treatments such as occupational therapy
- Implement a multitasking approach to mundane chores (e.g. cleaning up a dance party)
- self-adjust over time
- meet sensory needs
- Saying “yes” and saying “no” causes problems later
All of these can look different in individual homes. There is no one-size-fits-all parenting style. With a little preparation up front, you can set up a system in place that promotes consistency.
Enlisting the help of others can soften the struggle. Building on our strengths and the strengths of others, rather than striving for perfection, highlights the reality that we can all help each other. A little cooperation makes everything more fun.
Children whose parents have ADHD may have mothers who struggle to stay focused, forget to turn in school forms, or are chronically confused, but many In the case, the same mother is wonderfully spontaneous, excels at positive parenting, and brings her favorite fast-food lunch to school. At the last minute, you may love fast-paced video games and relax in settings that other parents may find uncomfortable.
Parents know their children, their homes, and their needs best. You don’t have to fit the mold, and you don’t have to break the mold if you don’t want to. Even just bending the “rules” and favoring consistency in favor of flexibility can go a long way.
If you’re an ADHD mom, know you’re not alone. you are doing a great job! Being a parent is no easy task, ask for help. Understand your strengths and celebrate them. Your child doesn’t need you to be perfect.
Quinn, PO, & Madhoo, M. (2014). A review of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in women and girls: revealing this hidden diagnosis. Primary Care Companion for Central Nervous System Disorders, 16(3), PCC.13r01596. https://doi.org/10.4088/PCC.13r01596