These 3 Tips will Help ADHD Parents Co-Parent with Ease

When people read “ADHD,” they often think of children and their challenges with the disorder. This is true. Children do struggle to manage the effects of ADHD in their lives.

However, ADHD affects another segment of the population, too — adults. Over 4% of American adults are affected. Of that number, 38% are women and 62% are men. Some of these people are married and have children, and some may be divorced.   

3 Tips will Help ADHD Parents Co-Parent

The Effects of ADHD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is recognized to affect people in three key ways: inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity. All three of these factors have at times likely make it difficult for you to connect with your children, particularly in a co-parenting situation.

  • Inattention: You might have noticed your mind wandering, or you may have a difficult time trying to remain focused while you’re talking to your child. Maybe you’re perpetually disorganized, and because of this, you’ve missed out on important sporting events or performances in your child’s life.
  • Hyperactivity: Have you noticed you need to move about constantly, or you can’t help but fidget or talk at all times? Staying active with your child is excellent, but being hyperactive when they’d rather have you listen can be less than ideal.
  • Impulsivity: Who hasn’t ever done or said something you wish you could take back later? People with ADHD can experience this a great deal more, making parenting, at times, a tough reality.

Having ADHD is not your fault. You’re doing the best you can to manage your symptoms and care for yourself and your children. Remember — you’re a work in progress. Take actionable steps every day to manage your mental health and let go of the idea of being perfect, and soon you’ll begin to thrive.

Tere are three tips to help manage your ADHD symptoms and co-parent your children.

Work Together

It’s wise to make joint decisions with your ex in a co-parenting model, especially when it affects your child’s education or physical health. It’s helpful to be informed and on the same page. Consider setting a budget, keeping records and sharing expenses for your child. Pulling your financial resources is another way to co-parent effectively.

Regarding discipline and rules for your child, it’s best to aim for consistency between households. Stability with expectations and schedule allows for less confusion and hurt feelings when children transition from home to home. Holding your child accountable to a preset schedule and list of rules also helps when you find your attention wavering and consistency slipping. Lack of parental consistency happens to all parents from time to time, but kids thrive on routine and consistency. 

Improve Communication

Improving your ability to communicate with your ex is crucial to helping you co-parent with ease. These strategies will also help you keep bouts of hyperactivity at bay:

  1. Remember the purpose: You’re communicating with your ex to benefit your child’s health and emotional well-being. This will sharpen your resolve and get you through the necessary conversation with your ex. Also, work to keep the conversation focused around your child.
  2. Meet regularly at set times: When you meet, do so in person. This might be uncomfortable at first, but ultimately it will be helpful. Communicating face to face allows for nonverbal cues like eye contact and body language.
  3. Listen to your ex: Listening can also be an uncomfortable task, especially when you disagree with what a person is saying. However, you can gain much by hearing what your ex has to say. Ask questions for clarification. They will appreciate being listened to and respected.
  4. Bring a fidget device: If you think it would be helpful to bring a fidget device to your conversation, feel free to do so. This is a great way to keep your hands busy and your mind engaged.

Adapt and utilize the above tips to improve your communication with your child. For example, ensure you have set times or routines established for when they return from school. Have an engaged conversation about their day, asking detailed questions about the highs and lows of each class. Truly listen and continue to ask questions about what your child says.

If you need to move, take your child on a walk, push them on a swing or use a fidget device. Your child will adore every second you invest in their lives.

Set Feelings Aside

Recognize that co-parenting is for your child’s happiness and emotional well-being. It’s OK to feel your hurt and pain, but you need to put your emotions aside to make the arrangement successful in your decision to co-parent.

You’ll need to be in touch with your impulsive side, keeping track of your mood and your desire to vent your frustrations. There will be frustrations, and you should vent them to stay regulated. However, it would be best if you never shared your frustrations with your child or dragged them in the middle of your issues with your ex. Ensure you have someone you can talk to about your feelings, whether that’s a trusted friend, family member or therapist.

Co-Parenting Works for Your Child and You

The co-parenting model presents myriad benefits to your child and you. Start incorporating one or more of these tips into your routine, and you’ll soon find yourself doing so with ease. These 3 Tips will Help ADHD Parents Co-Parent.

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