Tips on parenting multiple ADHD kids? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 8 Old 10-16-2013, 01:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi everybody, 

 

does anybody have some (or a lot) of tips for parenting more than one ADHD child? 

 

I have three kids, two of the diagnosed with ADHD, one very, very active toddler, all very cute and very bright. And very loud. And wild. They kind of multiplicate the behavior of the other ones. Meals for example: Shouting battle. Bathroom: Fighting, Shouting, Screaming. 

I am a tiny wee bit overwhelmed by trying to regulate three of them at one time, and I find, that a lot of the tips from books and stuff work beautifully with one child, but if I have two or three ... it is just not possible. 

 

There are no books or anything on this subject, is there? 

 

What is the best ADHD book that you now? 

 

Thank you, everybody!


Trin with DH , DD(7) dust.gif and DS(5) jumpers.gif,  DD(2) energy.gifdog2.gifbelly.gif(due 5/14)

I am not regularly online at the moment due to the above ...

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#2 of 8 Old 10-17-2013, 02:35 PM
 
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I haven't tried this myself but it might be worth exploring http://impactadhd.com/

 

I have two special needs kids but only one with ADHD. I am currently expecting child number 6 so our house is always noisy and chaotic.


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#3 of 8 Old 10-17-2013, 03:14 PM
 
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I have three that are probably all ADD.

 

I try to avoid feeding them artificial colors, which intensifies their behavior.

 

I try to keep a routine during the day.  Bedtime is the hardest, they often keep each other awake far too late.  (ADD is linked with fewer than average hours of sleep a night.)

 

We have sturdy washable furniture, because they're all over it.  We permit a lot more acrobatics--both indoors and out--than most parents.

 

ADD people sometimes will hyperfocus for hours on something that they're really interested in.  My children often work very industriously at tasks that they've set for themselves.  Ideally, each child would have a little room of their own, to work in without disruption from the others.

 

I find that they don't read the different tones of voice well, and I often have to exaggerate these, and repeat what I've said.

 

Earplugs (for me) are sometimes helpful.

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#4 of 8 Old 10-18-2013, 07:51 PM
 
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Please let me preface this by saying that I am probably naturally the least structured person you will ever meet. What I am about to say does not come naturally to me. It is the solution I found to living with 3 special needs kids (and 3 more!) at the same time.

 

I think the biggest gift you could give your kids (and yourself!) is predictability. Structure in the sense of a clear morning routine (we get up at 7, get dressed, eat breakfast at 7:30, get on the school bus at 8). Whatever the plan is. Same for evenings. I cook from 5:30 to 6. Kids either help, watch littler ones, or do homework. After dinner, we take turns bathing,and work on a jigsaw puzzle. As little time as possible in free fall. Planned activities for as much of the day as possible. I don't mean trips to the zoo, as much as clear definitions of what is expected of (nearly) every waking moment. 2 or 3 of my 6 or 7 kids (depending on how you count) could handle more than an hour or 2 unstructured. Getting started in this pattern was exhausting, but once I hit my stride, it was sort of a relief. I don't know how your days go - forgive me if I am assuming too much.

 

Have you seen the book: Smart but Scattered? My current favorite for teaching executive function skills.Stuff like planning, calming, like that.


Rhu - mother,grandmother,daughter,sister,friend-foster,adoptive,and biological;not necessarily in that order. Some of it's magic, some of it's tragic, but I had a good life all the way (Jimmy Buffet)

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#5 of 8 Old 10-18-2013, 11:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all for your suggestions! 

 

@pattimomma: I'll look into it!

 

@Vaske: Thanks for the tips, Fortunately, most of the artificial colours that are linked to behaviour are not allowed in germany :), but I do look into our food quite carefully. Nearly no fast food, no glutamat and nearly everything made from scratch, as far as possible organic. We have our lapses though. 

 

 

@mamarhu: I am not very structured myself. (that's an understatement ;) - being diagnosed with ADHD myself) I am TRYING to keep a structure. But it's exhausting. Plus, DH gets so distracted, he leaves the kids all.the.time. in the middle of something. As in: Put your shoes on, I'll be right back. Twenty minutes later the kids are screaming and taking our front door apart - or fight in the car because he left them there. 

Yesterday in the middle of the evening routine he decided that he is getting another plateful of dinner. DS was jumping in his bed, waiting for his story. Oh my. 

 

I decided to have them apart in the bathroom, and tried that yesterday, and it worked really well! 

 

mamarhu, how do you get the kids to actually help? As in watching the younger ones? Mine don't really. If they are supposed to, they just start something else or run of, and leave the littlest to do something not so helpful ;) 

 

Hugs everybody!


Trin with DH , DD(7) dust.gif and DS(5) jumpers.gif,  DD(2) energy.gifdog2.gifbelly.gif(due 5/14)

I am not regularly online at the moment due to the above ...

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#6 of 8 Old 10-19-2013, 01:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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@mamarhu: could you please outline how you actually do this : Clear expectations what's expected every waking moment?

 

maybe with a timeline? that would be so cool!


Trin with DH , DD(7) dust.gif and DS(5) jumpers.gif,  DD(2) energy.gifdog2.gifbelly.gif(due 5/14)

I am not regularly online at the moment due to the above ...

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#7 of 8 Old 10-19-2013, 06:30 PM
 
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It was a few (3?) years ago that I had such a full house. Bio kids were 14 and 15, one with autism. Foster kids were 8 and 9, both therapeutic level, both with serious PTSD, one with ADHD. I also had my grandchildren, aged 2 months and 2 years when they came to me. BigGirl was the 15 year old, and absolutely amazing with the little ones - I really didn't ever do this alone.

 

So here are some of the specific things we did:

 

A large list on the wall of things that are always OK to do when you have free time (read a book, color, eat a piece of fruit, clean your room, work on a jigsaw puzzle that is already out, etc), things that are probably OK, but you have to ask (eat something else, set up Legos or toys in the living room, watch TV or play a video game, play in the yard, etc). Each part of the list had dozens of suggestions - we made the lists together, and added more frequently. If someone was doing something not on the list (annoying a sibling, making a mess) I could say, "Go find something on the list to do". Sometimes I added things to the list as a surprise : "Look in the freezer" when I had bought popsicles.

 

But really, they didn't have much free time. The foster kids had therapy and family visits each week, and were on the soccer team. I often drafted someone to help with dinner or set the table. We didn't have set chores, but kids were generally pretty agreeable about helping when asked. Since the purpose of asking for help was really as a distraction more than to get the job done, I tried to make it fun and cheerful, not a chore or drudgery. My kids got into major trouble when left to their own devices. Beyond the normal, I am talking fire starting and worse. So they were never unsupervised at all - really 24/7, line of sight. Yes, it was exhausting! It did get to be habit to keep everyone occupied all the time. That seemed to make the biggest difference. We made many, many park, museum, zoo, and library trips when I couldn't think of anything else to do at home.

 

We had posted schedules - a big white board calendar, with each kid's activities in a different color pen. Morning routine, down to the details (get up, use the toilet, get dressed, have breakfast, brush teeth, gather coat and backpack, go out to the school bus) in 5-10 minute increments. Same with the evening routine, from dinner till bedtime. Schedules for each kid were different, so even bath turns were planned and written down. The 3 high needs kids, and the toddler, seemed to thrive with this predictability.

 

I hope some of these suggestions fit your family. Hang in there - it really does get better!


Rhu - mother,grandmother,daughter,sister,friend-foster,adoptive,and biological;not necessarily in that order. Some of it's magic, some of it's tragic, but I had a good life all the way (Jimmy Buffet)

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#8 of 8 Old 10-19-2013, 11:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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mamarhu, I am so going to try this! 

 

One of my problems is, that DH gets so distracted, that he 1) does not follow a routine 2)does not regulate the kids. I tried to explain to him, that if you don't keep this little springballs on track they are going to fly around the room like canonballs, and than there is nothing you can do anymore. I am not even sure if he gets it but he is not behaving like he does :(

 

And I am kind of out of it at the moment do to the pregnancy. 


Trin with DH , DD(7) dust.gif and DS(5) jumpers.gif,  DD(2) energy.gifdog2.gifbelly.gif(due 5/14)

I am not regularly online at the moment due to the above ...

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