There goes my ADHD mouth again — speaking up before I could zip it up. My teenager's going to kill me.
by Douglas Cootey
As a dad of four daughters, I am accustomed to dealing with certain issues over the past 21 years. For example, the color pink doesn't phase my guy-ish sensibilities anymore. You can't be Santa and have an aversion to the Barbie aisle with its Gauntlet of Pink. I can also handle discussions about that certain time of the month without batting an eye. Yet discussing bra sizes with my daughters without blushing is only a recent accomplishment.
Who am I kidding? My cheeks are flushed just typing that.
Still, as the stay-at-home dad for 19 years, and now as a single dad, I can't do my job without encountering the bothersome bra issue. Usually, it is a routine affair. For example, my 11-year-old is in need of new bras, so I walk in and buy some at the store. No big deal. I don’t bring the topic up with my friends, brothers, or dad, however. They get uncomfortable and squirm. So I keep tabs on my mouth and avoid it. Too bad I didn't think to keep my mouth zipped at my 11-year-old's IEP meeting last month.
My daughter is learning disabled, and it was time to formally define goals for her education. There were a few behavioral issues brought up, one of them being that sometimes she was showing up at school without a bra sometimes. Since she was developing, it was becoming a problem.
I was sick that day. If you have ADHD, you know how poorly the filters work. When the principal emphasized that this was a serious problem, I concurred and then added that the 11-year-old will likely take after her sisters and develop early. Numbers like 34 were tossed about, along with double Ds. Humorous anecdotes were shared. I assured the circle of seven female educators and administrators that I would get right on it. I couldn't have been more comfortable.
Until the next day. That’s when the ol' ADHD rumination started to kick in. Did I overshare? Did I offend? Omigosh! My 14-year-old is going to kill me.