My recent post on ADHD and Substance Abuse was THE MOST VIEWED POST I have written to date. 108 hits in 8 days for a little blog like mine sends a pretty clear message.

I have also received many emails asking me to focus more on this subject because so many in the ADD/ADHD community seem to be dealing with the issue in their own lives.ย Alcohol and drug abuse (illegal and prescription) are certainly a very real challenge for someone with ADHD, as it is for many others.

My favorite resource to share is an informational booklet, created by Al-anon Family Group Headquarters, and published just this year. It is current, easy to read and filled with the basics to get you started. Whether you’re a parent,ย a child, a spouse, a sibling or a friend of someone with a drug or alcohol problem, this booklet is a great first step to understanding what you can do to help yourself live a healthier life.

Al-anon Faces Alcoholism 2011

If you feel that Al-anon or Alateen could be right for you, please reach out to them and find out about meeting times and locations in your area.ย To check out their website, click here.

I will be writing a post about my personal connection to this disease, once I find the words. I’ve been trying for 3 weeks. It’s a great deal harder than I had imagined it would be. I’m working on it.

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I know…I know…it’s Wednesday. I choose to focus on the fact that I finished this post, and not on the fact that I am a day late. ๐Ÿ™‚

So, what do I have for my loyal readers today? (Side note…I HAVE READERS!!! I actually looked at my stats yesterday and saw that there are 25-30 of you that seem to be checking in regularly to read my posts. I knew I had a few supporters out there because some of you send me such lovely messages or link your blogs to mine. Thank you so much for that support! But 25-30 readers?! I had no idea! A big hug to each of you. ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyhow, now that I realize I have actual readers, I will do my best to be a better blogger. You can’t see me right now, but my hand is on my chest. I’d lay my other hand on the bible to make it an official oath, but I’m not religious enough to know where my bible is. Or if I even own a bible. ๐Ÿ˜› )

Anywho…back to my tip of the week….

Check out the link for a Family Barometer Satisfaction tool I found, from the website www.ADHDSupport.com. I really like this tool for a few reasons.

1 – If you have a child on medication, you should really try to measure their progress and success, at home and at school, on a regular basis. This is the only way to objectively get a reading on whether the medication is helping over a longer term. (I haven’t been doing this, but I will be starting after our next appointment with Dr. M as we’ll likely be trying a slightly higher dose of D’s Vyvanse.

2-This document can be used, as is, by simply printing off several copies (4 for you, and 4 for your child’s teacher) and placing them in a binder to keep them organized. Easy!

3-You can also use this document to create a list of expectations for your child. Grab some big paper (newsprint, flip chart paper or bristol board) and write out the items you and your partner feel are important for your child to work on. This needs to be written in a way that is age appropriate for your child, supportive and with a little creativity and colour! ๐Ÿ™‚ ย You can use the document as inspiration.

For example: In my house, my son has daily chores and weekly chores. He’s 12 so I took some colourful paper and wrote up what is expected of him each day (tidying his room, taking out the compost and emptying the dishwasher) and each week (cleaning his room, sweeping upstairs and folding some laundry). I used washable markers to make it more colourful and interesting and then posted them on the wall, where he can see them.

This makes it easier for him to remember what is expected of him. I still have to remind him that it’s time to do his chores, and I still have to check to make sure he is completing them properly but I don’t have to keep repeating what he needs to do.

Trust me, that’s something. It’s one less broken record playing at him all day. ๐Ÿ˜›

I have been reading a lot lately about the benefits of going gluten-free. Though I haven’t made up my mind whether we may want to try it in our family (I need to do more reading before deciding), I can tell you some of the recipes look pretty good! ๐Ÿ™‚

So, for those of you who are eating a gluten-free diet, here’s a dessert recipe for you! Click HERE.

The Virtual ADHD Conference has begun and I am very impressed so far. The speakers are interesting, the content is relevant and the way it is all organized is AMAZING!

I’ll admit, I was skeptical at first. I thought I was going to be bored listening to podcasts all day, but yesterday was fantastic! I couldn’t wait to hear more! By the end of the day,ย I had a million new ideas floating around in my head.ย More importantly though,ย I was buzzing with excitement and renewed enthusiasm for what can be done to improve my son’s life.

Today, I’ll be missing a few sessions but I’ll be able to download what I’ve missed and listen to it at my own convenience. I’ll also be able to download the slides and session notes that go with it. It’s perfect for those with ADHD!

What does this have to do with Tip Tuesday? I’m getting to it. ๐Ÿ™‚

I nearly missed out on this unique learning opportunity because it was different and I was afraid it wouldn’t be the right fit for me. I was afraid I would be bored. I was afraid to waste the money on the conference fees. I was afraid to try something new. And I nearly missed out on something great.

So my tip this week is based on a lesson we’ve all been taught, but sometimes forget. We cannot, and should not, live our lives based on fear. We need to embrace the successes and challenges that come from trying something new. And if we fail, we need to accept our mistakes for what they are – opportunities to learn more and do better.

Good luck! ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Tip Tuesday – September 28th

September 28, 2010

As a few of you may remember, I was a tad frustrated with homework last week. (Understatement.)

After some much-needed humour (see above) from an episode of How I Met Your Mother (LOVE that show!), I was back at it and combing the internet for some tips and ideas to help us stay positive about homework.

The reality is that this year is 100 times better than last year, in respect to homework. D’s teacher is sending home less work sheets and what he does send home reflects what they have covered in class (a foreign concept for a few of the teachers D’s had in the past). However, we still have our moments. Homework is the baneย of my existence on some nights.

There are tips that can help though.

Over the years, we have learned that being organized is the MOST important skill you and your child will need when it comes to school. This may also be your biggest challenge.

Having a child with ADHD inevitably means that you are likely having discussions on a daily basis about books that have gone missing, worksheets they forgot to bring home and agendas they left on the playground….they think. ๐Ÿ™‚ If you also have ADHD yourself, then life might be even more chaotic and getting organized may not be one of your strengths. However, this does NOT have to mean you give up on it. Luckily, there are many things you can try! ๐Ÿ™‚

I will be discussing several of these tips for getting organized over the next few months because I think they could really help those living with ADHD and it’ll be a great review for me too. After all, there may have been strategies that didn’t work a few years ago that may be exactly what we need this year! ๐Ÿ™‚

So, the first little tidbit I’ll share on this Tip Tuesday comes from ADDitude Magazine.

Battling Disorganization

Enjoy! ๐Ÿ™‚

Tip Tuesday – September 21st

September 21, 2010

For those of you who modify your diet to manage your ADHD, here is a new dairy-free recipe to try!

Click HERE to make Banana Tortillas.

A new school year will soon be upon us and to get things off on the right foot, check out the link below. While I may have worded this resource a little differently, I do believe it can be used as a great conversation starter with your child’s new teacher.

Teaching Tips

Something that works for us is getting in there early and often with the teachers.

Set the tone with a positive first meeting where you share a little about your child, their strengths and challenges, what they’re interested in and any tips you can provide for what has worked well in the past. If you’re working with them at home on organizational skills or reading, make sure to tell the teacher that too.

This is also a great opportunity to ask the teacher a few basic questions like…

1 – What are your expectations in the classroom?

2 – Can I have an overview of what my child will be learning this year? (Something printed, that you can take home, is best. Allow the teacher a few days to get it to you.)

3 – Are there ways I can help out? School trips? Photocopying worksheets? Volunteering in some way? (Teachers who see you as a contributing member of the school community will appreciate your efforts.)

Remember to thank them for their time, give them your email in case anything comes up and wish them the best as the school year kicks off.

Regardless of how that first meeting goes, walk away knowing you did your best, as a parent. You gave it your all. That’s all we ever expect of our children and we need to appreciate the same from ourselves.

Good luck to each of you, and to your children! ๐Ÿ™‚

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