Self Esteem

Rules for Resilience

ADDitude readers share how they help their children with ADHD cope with challenges at school and at home.

Mother helping daughter cope with ADHD by taking walk down cobblestone street
Mother helping daughter cope with ADHD by taking walk down cobblestone street

Allowing a child to do as much as possible for himself builds self-esteem. Jumping in and doing everything for him makes him less resilient.
-Avie Lumpkin, Alameda, California

My son wants to be an instant success at everything he does, so he gets frustrated when it takes time to master something new. I remind him that his favorite musicians still need to practice to be good — and that no skateboarding star got to be one by giving up.
-Karen Evers, Holliston, Massachusetts

When my son has a negative thought, I challenge him to turn it into a positive one by listing his great qualities. Nothing magical here — it’s consistency that makes the difference.
-Jennifer Covello, Norwalk, Connecticut

Music! Art! Doctors who care!
-Trish Boudah, North Richland Hills, Texas

If your child isn’t invited to the birthday party of the week, tell him you feel sorry for that kid, because “he doesn’t know what a neat, fun person you are.”
-Rachel Goodman, Roanoke, Virginia

We helped our daughter hang up her sports medals in her room and to make a scrapbook of her accomplishments and of the fun things she has done. This lifts her spirits when she comes home feeling like she can’t do anything right.
-Mary Beth Sisco, Jeffersonville, Indiana

Lots of pats on the back.
-Cindy Bloom, Kalamazoo, Michigan

The best thing I did to help my child feel resilient was allow him to take driving lessons and get his license. I have my mother-in-law to thank for that advice.
-Janice Longoria, League City, Texas