Dealing with friends

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    • #47070

      Hi everyone. I’m new to this so I apologize if this isn’t the correct space to pose this question. My son was diagnosed with ADHD at the beginning of this year and we’ve been trying some behavior modifications at home that are working very well. We’re having some difficulty when it comes to friends though. My son has a handful of friends that come and hang out at this house but he can be very physical with them. We’ve explained to him that this behavior could cause him to lose friends and he explains to us that he understands and doesn’t want that to happen but he continues to behave the same way. Even before his friends arrive we sit down and talk about what is ok to do and what’s not. When his friends are over he also treats me very differently and doesn’t listen, talks back, does whatever he wants even though he knows it’s wrong. When the play date is over he’ll come to me and apologize but it happens almost every time a friend is here. He does get warnings and consequences when he has friends over so it’s not as if I’m letting things fly. Does anyone have any suggestions of how to effectively deal with situations when friends are over. It’s like I’m dealing with a completely different kid. I appreciate any advice as I’m new to this and trying any suggestions.

    • #47074
      Penny Williams

      It sounds like he’s trying to maintain control of a situation he’s uncomfortable in. You’re on track with working on social skills. Just remember, in an overwhelming and uncomfortable situation he will not have as much cognitive control to recall and use what he’s learned about social situations, at least at first. It will take time and consistency to make the appropriate behavior more natural for him.

      Here’s more on teaching kids with ADHD social skills:

      Social Skills 101

      A New Way to Sharpen Social Skills

      16 YouTube Videos That Teach Social Skills

      ADDitude Community Moderator, Author & Mentor on Parenting ADHD, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

    • #52575

      Great articles, thanks Penny. I am interested in this topic too — especially the changed behavior when friends are over. I often feel like my son is trying to control the situation that feels uncomfortable by acting “tough” in front of his friends.

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