Any moms out there with a teenage daughter with ADD and anxiety?

Stacy - posted on 02/27/2012 ( 3 moms have responded )

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We have a 15 year old who has ADD and anxiety. She's in counseling has been on meds. She has bad anger issues so much so I don't want her driving. We just feel alone in this. We just want to know how parents with teens with ADD deal with it. How do you get the anger and not caring to stop?

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Sarah - posted on 09/02/2013

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My daughter was diagnosed in grade 2-which led to my ADD diagnosis. During my research a flood of memories came back. Being told I was difficult, lazy, incapable of telling the truth and the cause for all family drama was opposite to who I was and remember being. I was adventurous, dramatic and extremely bored at school. The labels assigned to me through the lack of knowledge on the subject in the 60+70's were hurtful and created a sense of not belonging and withdrawal from those who used discipline to exert some control over my nonconformist behaviour. Kids don't want to create negative drama or act in a way that results in punishment or consequences, and when they do I sincerely believe it goes deeper than what is seen or heard. Adhd kids crave stimulation and aren't mature enough to understand the difference sometimes and haven't developed the skills to identify and manage the alternate choices. An example would be that they chose to push buttons or tease/annoy for a reaction when bored instead of engaging in an activity or asking you to play with them. Its a knee jerk reaction and they really aren't aware of the frustration or toll it takes on the people who love them. From my personal experience as a child and a Mom of a child with adhd my advise would be not to take it personally and look deeper than the behaviour for the reason or trigger than is behind it. Each child is different but they all need to be loved unconditionally-even when they aren't likeable. Ask them why they did or said what is deemed worthy of consequence before handing out punishment. You may find they were unaware and didn't intend for the outcome and by punishing what they don't understand will get neither you or them closer to understanding each other or a harmonious relationship. It's by far one of the hardest things to do as a parent but if its left alone the relationship you have now and in the future will be difficult for both of you and the distance will magnify as they become more independent and have the option of minimizing contact. They grow up fast-do whatever it takes to guide them with unconditional love & support. Chances are their children may also have some form of adhd and they will naturally mirror the parenting they remember and helped form the person they became.

CMA - posted on 06/10/2012

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I have 13 year old that has been on this road for years. The tantrums began at age 3 or 4. They are now anxiety triggered impulsive and explosive tantrums. She has become so insecure socially and personally, that we are now on a depression/anger roller coaster. She was officially diagnosed with Add/adhd in 2nd grade. We did not treat her with meds. until now. Things have gotten far worse since starting intunive 4 weeks ago. I have often worried about her apparent lack of empathy and impulsive anger, but there seems to be no real answer. We see a sweet (friend like) psychologist she can vent to (not sure she is really getting to the root of things!..third one we have been to). We also see a PA/in the psychiatry field to prescribe meds and discuss side effects or improvement. The school system is useless. The pediatrician bows out! Truth be told, as parents, we are on our own. We have two other children that have not had any of these issues. It sort of confirms for me it is not our parenting. We are sad, frustrated and worried. Sorry I simply vented. If we get to a place where our child is improving and the help we seek ever works, I will share the advice.

Sherri - posted on 03/03/2012

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I have a 16 year old foster daughter. She's not very angry but she does have anxiety that causes her to become depressed and cut herself. With issues like this, it's honestly above you.... you're just not equipt to deal with it. Even if you were a mental health professional, being her parent is a MAJOR strike against you. I didn't have ADD, but I was a very angry teenager and was medicated for anxiety and depression and even hospitalized twice. I can remember my family members trying to talk to me about my behaviour and what was "going on with me", all the while getting MORE angry because they were putting themselves above me. At one point, I even lost it on my mom telling her that she has NO idea what she was talking about and it's easy for her to judge, but she had NO idea what I was going through and how dare she presume to know what it was like to walk a day in my life. She actually agreed and stopped her lecturing.



The best thing that anyone did for me was leave me alone. There's no point in trying to deal with the anger because you're mom. I had clear, consise rules and consequences, routine and she would probably do well in a physical sport. If she's raging, let her rage. Unless there's a physical danger, walk away. If there is a physical danger, call the police.



It took me 2 years until I started caring and it honestly came from within-nothing my parents did for me worked or had any impact. Now, I'm happy, successful and a responible person. I still suffer severe anxiety, but I deal with it. When you're a teenager and you feel like you have no control over what you're feeling, it's bad enough. When you have the anger issues and anxiety on top of it, you see NO way of ever getting and feeling better..... the not caring isn't surprising.



I would suggest that you sit down (without her knowing) with her counsellor and prioritize what you would like addressed. This is what i"ve recently done with my forster daughter. I requested that before he brings any more of her pent up emotions to the surface, to first give her coping techniques so that she doesn't spiral out of control. Then I asked that the counsellor keep us apprized of the techniques so that if we see the anxiety coming on, we can remind her to put those techniques into practice. As parents that aren't equipt to deal with it, that's all we can really do. That's what the professionals are there for.



Hope that helps.

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