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Empowerment Insights

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Life Change Articles from Jenny Jarvis Coaching

How not to Murder your ADHD kid!

Picture of me (Jenny Jarvis) and Sarah Templeton on a purple background. Words say How not to murder your ADHD kid with Sarah Templeton and The Drama Dialogues

How not to murder your ADHD kid!

The day had come, I was at the end of my tether, and I just didn’t know what to do. My wonderful daughter who I had spent years saying “I won’t ever have to worry about her, she just gets on with it” was causing chaos. Things were going on that I just wasn’t prepared for as a parent. I had always been quite an easy teenager (my parents might not agree), I tended not to get into trouble in or out of school. In fact, the day when I was around 14 and the police turned up at my parent’s door accusing me of shoplifting, I was absolutely mortified. I had never taken more than the odd extra jelly teddy from the penny sweet selection (and that was 2 for 1p!). Unfortunately, the security guard was untrained and just saw 3 teenage girls and made assumptions. I absolutely had not done any such thing and refused to go into M&S for years after.

Anyway, back to my own child, suddenly, I was dealing with all sorts of things I didn’t know how to cope with. She was in freefall, and I felt that the techniques of removing “stuff”, grounding and shouting just weren’t working. Something different had to happen. We were on the pathway for an ADHD diagnosis and someone in a support group mentioned a book called “How not to murder your ADHD kid”. This sounded perfect. And it was.

I bought it on audible and listened avidly to Sarah Templeton talking about her late diagnosis and her work in prisons with young offenders, when she came to the realisation that 9 out of 10 prisoners are likely ADHD, many undiagnosed and unmedicated.

When she listed of the “symptoms” (traits is probably a better word), of ADHD, a lot fell into place. Much as I hadn’t gone off the rails, I could relate to what she was saying for myself. I put the book on in the car, I got my parents to listen to parts of it. I immersed myself in how not to murder my ADHD kid. I didn’t feel like adding to the prison numbers.

Of course, I’m joking, but I was seriously losing the will to live myself. I was fearful for the future, and I couldn’t see a way out until I listened to Sarah’s voice telling me “You must never, ever, embarrass or criticise your ADHD kid. You must never make fun of them in front of people. Sanctions don’t work. You need to learn to talk to them, but not at a time that suits you, in the time that they have managed to calm down”.

How the heck do I do that?!

It took practice and a lot of patience. I had to do a lot of stepping away, deep breathing and trusting that, as all the traditional methods were making things worse, Sarah knew what she was talking about.

This rescued the relationship with my daughter. Although there are still a lot of challenges in school, most of them are due to a lack of understanding of ADHD, an approach that suits 2000 children in a school, not those who have different needs and the constant desire to shame kids into behaving. I don’t really get it.

It’s been a tough couple of years with the school, but I see progress. A few of the teachers are taking onboard the things I have shown them, and they are trying to do what I had to practice, to take a step back and look through different eyes.

We need to get this sorted. If we don’t, more young people will continue to go into the prison system just through lack of understanding.

In this podcast episode, I speak to the author of How not to murder your ADHD kid. We talk about what made her want to write the book, ways in which we can help our ADHD kids and how we can change the future of the prison system so less people end up there in the first place.

Is ADHD a Trend?

There is a thought that ADHD is a “trend”. It is far from that. No one would choose to have the challenges that come with ADHD. Once you learn how to use it in a good direction, many people then say they wouldn’t change it (as Sarah does), but for others, the challenges go unsupported and make life so hard that the statistics around ADHD and suicide are scary.

If you know anyone who knows someone with ADHD, please pass this on to them. We all need to know that changes have to be made and it’s not just because kids are naughty, and parents are useless and unboundaried.

The Podcast is available on all major platforms by searching for The Drama Dialogues

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Coach and NLP Practitioner Jenny Jarvis

Jenny Jarvis is a UK Life Change Coach, Podcast host and NLP Practitioner who has empowered her clients to live a life of their dreams, unleash their relationship with money and start and grow brands and businesses to great success. A truly inspirational individual, Jenny is also the mum to two amazing teens, a Reiki Master and motivational speaker.

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