Need support: sad 8 year old daughter

Home Welcome to the ADDitude Forums For Parents The Emotions of ADHD Need support: sad 8 year old daughter

This topic contains 2 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  ADHDmomma 2 months, 2 weeks ago.

  • Author
  • #104927

    Amy HJ

    We’re working on diagnosis for our daughter right now, but I will eat my hat if she doesn’t have ADHD. The more I read the more certain I am. In the meantime, though, my heart is breaking for her. She’s acting out at home, alienating her brother and both of us, her parents, with her frustration-related tantrums, and she dreads school every day because she’s so miserable socially. I think she alienates her friends because she’s socially immature and doesn’t know how to do the give and take of friendship. And the girl drama has begun in her class. It’s so painful to watch. I’ve reached out to her teacher, have planned play dates for her, try to be as loving and consistent as possible, but it’s so hard. And when she’s acting out at home, which I know is a reflection of her misery at school (where she holds it together–everyone there thinks she’s totally FINE and we’re exaggerating about what’s going on with her), it’s hard not to feel hurt and angry in return because she can be really awful. I’m worried that her brother is going to be affected by all of this as well. Would love any advice about how to support her or even just (and maybe especially) words of encouragement for us.

  • #104969


    It would take several books to explain how to fully support her, but I can tell you how to get started.

    #1 – Work on your parent mindset. You, the parent, have to change, not the child. She is working with a different brain, a brain that traditional “crime and punishment” parenting doesn’t work for. Yes, of course she needs to build skills and coping strategies and self-regulation, and we will get to that. BUT, the most important and foundational piece is to get your mind right for parenting this child.

    #2 – Work to understand the ADHD brain. Google things like “amygdala hijack” and “rumble rage cycle.” Use tools like 1-2-3 Magic and The Incredible 5-Point Scale. This really helps with the understanding too:

    #3 – Practice mindful parenting and work on staying calm and patient. When your daughter is having outbursts, she’s having a hard time, not giving you a hard time. Her emotions have likely escalated outside of her physical control (Amygdala Hijack). She’s on fire and mirroring the intensity by yelling, judging, or snapping back is just adding fuel to the fire. It will ONLY make things worse.

    If you haven’t, read Ross Greene’s “The Explosive Child” or “Raising Human Beings” right way.

    Time for Plan B? 10 Tips for Dealing with an Explosive Child

    (for all kids, not just explosive kids)

    ADDconnect Moderator, Author on Parenting ADHD, Mom to teen boy with ADHD, LDs, and autism

  • #104970


    Oh, and create opportunities for success for her, no matter how small. She really needs some wins right now. πŸ˜‰

    ADDconnect Moderator, Author on Parenting ADHD, Mom to teen boy with ADHD, LDs, and autism

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.