Tuesday, 6 September 2011

What your child with ADHD wishes she could tell you

Dear Mom,

You’re never going to fix me.

All the shouting, lectures and punishments in the world, are never going to make me learn to be organised and focused.  I’ll never be person who doesn’t lose things and follows things through, the way you want me to.  
It just makes me feel bad about myself when you do that.

I can feel bad about myself without any extra help, thank-you.  I live in a world of competent, well-organised people who seem to know where their things are and what they’re doing at all moments. At school and at home, I compare myself daily to these perfect creatures that never seem to put a foot wrong.

I can feel you get irritated when I lose my bus-pass (again)  I can see your disappointment with my performance at school.  I know you get worried when you think about my future.  I know you think that if you don’t fix me, I’ll wonder around in a lost, fuzzy cloud forever.  You worry if you don’t teach me to take responsibility for myself; I’ll never function properly as an adult.  
But you’re so busy worrying about me and trying to fix me,  that you don’t give me what I really need.

So how can you help me?

Get my medication sorted, please.  (And don’t have any second thoughts about it. The pharmaceutical industry has really come through for me on this one.)
Encourage me to exercise regularly, to eat properly and get enough sleep. (Because weirdly, that’s what I really need)
Teach me about Mindful meditation (and do some yourself).
You know that one thing I do really well? The singing or writing or dancing or playing the guitar or acting thing that I am really good at. Facilitate that for me to the max.  I need to do something I’m easily good at (and one day, I could make a living out of it. You never know.)

But this is the most important thing you can do for me: show that I’m loved, even though I make mistakes.
Tell me that I’m loved as I am now, unfixed. Convince me that I am loveable as I am, without the grades and prizes my siblings bring home. 

Be willing to let go of who you think I should be, and see me for the wonderful creature that I am.
For a moment today, let go of your vision for me, and see me as I really am.
See the party-bringing, buzz-seeking, gifted, interesting, unique and loveable phenomenon that I am. 

Let go and let love.

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