Children with ADHD may struggle with self-monitoring, but they are also sensitive to the kind of feedback they receive from authority figures. Unfortunately, many parents worry that they walk around eggshells trying to motivate their child without coming off as controlling or disappointed in them. Anxiety around wanting to please parents and being self-sufficient can reinforce signs of ADHD, like hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattentiveness. Dr. Sharon Saline, author of What Your Child Wishes You Knew, encourages families to teach their child with ADHD the 5 C’s method to reduce family stress and equip children with the skills they need to thrive.
Although there is no specific roadmap to success for girls with ADHD, as every family is unique and learns differently. However, trying to understand issues your daughter is struggling with is easier when she is involved in conversations about what strategies may help her stay focused and organized.
Practice the 5 C’s with your child with ADHD:
- Self-Control. Role modeling how to manage your feelings can help your child with ADHD practice doing the same. Although it is a natural reaction, it can be distressing for kids when their parents absorb and reflect their distress. This may include knowing when to step back and distance yourself from emotionally intense situations.
- Compassion. Many teens with ADHD struggle with low self-esteem and are sensitive to negative feedback from others. While parents may want to suggest ways they can improve their focus and regulate their energy, many teens perceive this feedback as a message that they are not good enough. Meeting your child where they are at and encouraging them to work towards their personal goals helps them learn self-compassion.
- Collaboration. It is hard to follow other people’s rules and expectations without some degree of buy-in. Sit down with your daughter and talk about things she wants to work on to make life easier, not necessarily “better.” Help her brainstorm ways to help her work through these challenges.
- Consistency. Getting into a routine helps teens with ADHD organize their day. As they often struggle with rigid thinking and difficulty adjusting to new situations, the predictability of consistent rules and consequences can help teens stay on task and feel in control of their emotions.
- Celebration. Look for ways to celebrate your child’s strengths and victories. Pay attention to their interests and skills and explore ways they can build upon these. Giving consistent positive feedback boosts’ their self-esteem and self-efficacy.
Asheville Academy Can Help
Asheville Academy for Girls is a therapeutic boarding school for girls ages 10-14 who struggle with learning, behavioral, and emotional diagnoses. This program is social, emotional, and academically focused in order to empower girls to move forward and transition smoothly back into their home and school life. Students gain a greater sense of confidence, ability to manage emotions, and the skills to communicate effectively. We can help your family today!
Contact us at 800-264-8709 to learn more about ADHD in girls.
Cat brings more than thirty years of experience making an impact in the lives of adolescents. Cat has developed multiple programs helping children, teens, and young adults in a variety of settings and with a diverse range of diagnoses. She has dedicated her career to behavioral health and is honored to be part of the passionate team at Asheville Academy for Girls. She recognizes how delicate this age is and is proud of the role she and her team play in helping girls grow and prosper.