Reply To: My 7 year old son with ADHD is violent and aggressive to me. I am desperate.

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#98124
maxb
Participant

I hesitate to offer any “answers” here but just share experience. I have adhd myself but being female never raged. BUT I have been looking after kids with adhd and asd for a few years now as a carer. In several cases (7 to be precise) he kids are all 6-14 years old and I am often tasked with tasks which their parents said they find stressful. I didn’t know what stressful meant, as I have never had any trouble – all the kids do everything I ask with not a hint of protest. It’s only been a few times when I’ve happened to turn up early that I hear these horrifying tantrums…and get what they mean by “stressful”.I’ve since spoken to all the parents and this is what these kids all do *all the time* with their parents. Horrors!

I have no idea why they are different with me. Whether I’m a novelty (although after a few days a week for 4+ years I’m hardly a novelty). Whether it has to do with some kid-parent battleground. But medications are the same…diet etc are the same. The “magic . powers”which their parents think I have come down to at a wild guess…I have adhd myself so my personality is very empathetic and playful. I empathise with them a lot about how unfair everything is and listen to them offload about their teachers, parents yelling and being hypocritical and unfair. I praise them a lot for every little thing they do – gush over them about how grown up and mature they are being. I am very huggy. Kids like that (or this. me) have low dopamine levels and go through life being criticised for everything. So thanking them and praising them gives them little dopamine shots in their struggling brains constantly.

Oh and I ‘bribe’ them with something fun after they manage to do everything they find unbearable. A story, a cartoon, a huge hug, a walk outside.

What the kids tell ME when I ask them why they raise hell with their parents is they are frustrated as their parents aren’t listening, they feel they are a constant disappointment and after a day/week at school where everyone seems exasperated, they say become overwhelmed and scared by their parent *again* being upset with them.

I don’t know if any of these insights are of use…but maybe??hope so!

Cheers, Max