Katie was excited to have Loren, a fellow third-grader, come over for a play date. As soon as Loren arrived, Katie told her the rules (which she made up) for every game they played, and Loren submissively followed the directions -- up to a point. When Loren won a game, or didn’t follow the rules to Katie’s liking, Katie got upset and yelled at her. After getting into the car to go home, Loren’s mom asked her daughter if she had a good time. Loren shouted, “No -- I’m never playing with her again.”
Kids don’t want to come back to play with a poor host who has behaves badly. In fact, a child who isn’t a gracious host will have a lot of trouble making friends. Here’s what your child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADD/ADHD) should know:
ADD/ADHD Playdate Do's
DO: Live by the motto that the guest is always right. This rule neutralizes bossiness and is easy to enforce. If there is an argument -- about the rules of a game or which game to play -- tell your child that the guest is right. If the guest is pushy, your child doesn’t have to invite him over again. If the friend physically hurts your child, call the child’s parents.
DO: Instill friendship loyalty. If another child comes by or calls during the play date, have your child tell him, “I’m busy right now, but thanks. I’ll get back to you later.” If you find your child and his friend playing in different rooms, determine the cause before taking action. If things are going well, ask your child to stop what he is doing and re-join the guest.
Next: ADD/ADHD Playdate Don'ts
This article appeared in the Spring 2011 issue of ADDitude. SUBSCRIBE TODAY to ensure you don't miss a single issue.