Reply To: Finding Your Tribe…Long Post

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Hi TaurusMoon,

My daughter had a number of those meltdowns at elementary school parties, and was iced out by the “Mommy Mafia”. I lived through your shame and humiliation; my daughter lived through more. As transfer students into an elite public school district, we were in constant terror of being kicked out and never fit in with the upper crusty parent cliques, so I understand those pressures, too. Even our faith community labeled her as “special needs” in a shaming way.

We had to seek out faith alternatives that are “noise-and-motion friendly”; she is now a thriving teen mentor in that growing community. We kept her in the unfriendly school system because, unlike most public schools in our area, it had good art classes; DD has emerged as a gifted artist who gets lots of admiration for her creations. So I guess it was worth the years of awkward, apologetic participation in that community…

BTW, on Vyvanse (where was that wonder drug until two years ago?), my daughter marched into the HS counselor’s office, got the forms for the district’ independent study program, and is now pulling better grades with far less seat time. Of her own initiative!

And those kids whose parents iced her out? They spend their weekends getting drunk and high while my daughter is leading religious outdoor education for middle schoolers, many of whom have grown up emotionally volatile. Which child would I really rather have?

I guess my point is, kids grow up. I spent hours torturing myself, thinking that because my daughter was constitutionally unable to fit in with the “best” (ie, most elite) community in our area, she was destined for…well, I don’t have to tell you. We parents of ADHD kids all put ourselves through those horrible imaginings. But somehow, with medication, parents who love her, and enough art, outdoor time, and understanding community, things are OK for DD right now. The friends she has are supportive and even loving, and could care less that her parents never played tennis at the country club.

I hope this gives you some sense of light at the end of the childhood tunnel. It can (and even does) get better!

Blessings to you and your son!