This is episode three. Let’s get started.
Smarter Parenting welcomes you to our podcast series, the Parenting Coach for ADHD. Here to heal and elevate lives is your parenting coach, Siope Kinikini.
Welcome back. I hope everybody has had a great day. And that everything is going well for you. Let me tell you about me. Everything is going great. It’s a beautiful day. And I am so happy actually to talk to you more about ADHD today. And the thing that I really wanted to focus on today was this approach that a lot of ADHD parents have in regards to treatment. But I want to use the same format that I used before. I just want to walk through what it looks like, what it sounds like and then what it feels like. Usually when a child receives the diagnosis of ADHD, the parents have a very strong reaction in okay, I kind of knew this. And now what do we do, right? So what it looks like is they actually start scouring the internet and reading books.
They end up actually researching a lot. And there is a lot of information out there about ADHD. Now in the Smarter Parenting ADHD course, there is a discussion about the history of ADHD. ADHD has been documented for over 100 years. It’s been named a few different things during that time. However, it’s been around for a long time. So there’s a lot of information about ADHD. So what it looks like is parents will actually go and look and research to try and discover more about ADHD. That’s not uncommon. What they’re going to find though is a tidal wave of information that they have to sift through and figure out exactly how to make sense of ADHD and their child’s behavior.
Now ADHD should exist on a spectrum as well as autism because there are severe cases of ADHD and some that are less severe. It doesn’t really, usually you just get the label, your child has ADHD and then that’s it. But parents know where their child falls there if it’s very severe or if it’s kind of light. So they’ll do a ton of research. They’ll start to apply certain principles. Now what does it look like? They begin to gather in things that they think are going to work. And these are from different studies, different groups. And a lot of times the information has been filtered through and changed.
They will begin to apply those things that they are learning with their child. And in application, when they start to do these things they’re going to start to notice some changes in their child. But a lot of times what happens is the child responds to it for a time and then the child changes. And then the parents feel like it didn’t work. And they just throw that out and then they begin through the research bucket again to find something else that they can use or try. Now what does it feel like for an ADHD parent? It feels frustrating. It’s exhausting, it’s tiring. This takes a ton of energy and a ton of time.
And a lot of parents with children who struggle with ADHD end up feeling angry and upset largely because it’s this consistent rollercoaster of trying to adjust, balance and help their child become successful. And trying these intervention techniques that only last for a certain amount of time. So that’s what it looks like. That’s what it sounds like. That’s what it feels like. This is the whole gambit of usually what happens to parents when they discover their child has been diagnosed with ADHD. Now for us who are in the field of working with children with ADHD, our focus is in longterm help. Things that actually will endure and last for a long period of time.
And so we actually do the same thing that a lot of ADHD parents do. The difference is, is that we’re separated enough that we can delve into the studies and we actually will do a lot more concrete research into what effective techniques are being used to help these children and to help families. Now the Teaching-Family Model from the smarter parenting website is something that has been researched and that has been tried over and over and over again. It’s been replicated in different agencies and with different professionals with children who struggle with ADHD.
The difference between using this approach and what most parents do, which is what I consider a hodgepodge approach is that we’re not selecting and choosing bits and pieces of techniques to try with a child. With the smarter parenting or with the Teaching-Family Model, we actually have a whole system that actually is integrated and helps in each section. So if you wanted to help with communication, and you wanted to also help your child follow instructions and obey the rules, everything within the context of the Teaching-Family Model supports that. So you don’t teach your child something about communication that later is undermined by something you’re teaching about following instructions.
So let me explain a little bit how that works. I know that sounds a little confusing, but it’s actually fairly simple. One of the founders of the Teaching-Family Model, which we use on smarter parenting was Mont Wolf. Now Mont Wolf was one of the first people to implement the idea of time out. So time out is something that most parents have heard of. But they don’t understand the research behind it and where it was initially implemented or used. Time out was initially implemented for children who struggled with slow processing skills. It was a way for them to remove themselves, to calm themselves down and then to come back and address the issues. Now over the course of time, because this has existed since the ’60s, other professionals have taken the idea of time out and have changed it. And modified it to fit the different populations that they’re working with.
They need to be put into time out for depending on their age. So if they are six years old, they should be in time out for six minutes. Now, is that founded in science? Is that founded in the basis of how time out was first established and how it was first worked? No, it’s not. So time out and the whole concept of time out has gone through this transition of multiple professionals going through and changing and tweaking things around to fit their overall presentation model that they feel would be most helpful for the populations that they serve. Again, the problem with this is that you end up with a hodgepodge of different ideas of what for example time out is.
And not essentially what it was meant for and how it was first implemented and how it worked. This idea of picking and choosing and trying to find different modalities to help your child will become frustrating for a lot of parents. When you choose something that is all encompassing like the Teaching-Family Model, it actually helps support all of the other skills involved there. And it’s a complete package. In a way, it’s like buying a kit that has all the pieces that you need to build an airplane. Rather than going to a craft store and trying to buy individual pieces and trying to create a plane out of that.
There’s a huge difference between how successful you’re going to be if you have an entire kit, or if you’re just selecting pieces and going to different stores to try and find matching pieces. So the recommendation for all professionals is to use something that’s evidence-based. Which the Teaching-Family Model is. But it’s also for parents who have children with ADHD to be very aware of the techniques that they’re implementing. How they were founded, where the evidence comes from their effectiveness, and then how they work. Now you can continue to shop like a buffet and get different things that are in the buffet. Or you can get a complete meal or something that is set and works consistently in supporting the overall model, which is the Teaching-Family Model.
The general idea is this, parents, as they figure out that their child is going to need some help, it is really, really, really important for them to find something like the Teaching-Family Model, which has all the components there in order to help their child to become successful. Now, this also helps parents reduce their levels of frustration, their levels of anger and exhaustion. Now parents with children with ADHD know what it’s like to be exhausted. But can you imagine reducing that by being consistent with this model? Consistent delivery that doesn’t change and you’re able to adjust as your child gets older. And your child actually starts to feel the consistency when you first implement it as it doesn’t change as they grow.
And so it’s super helpful for them to feel a sense of comfort in knowing that things are going to constantly change. My recommendation for parents is to use the Teaching-Family Model. It’s consistent, it helps parents know exactly what to say, how to behave and what to do in situations. And it is broad enough that parents will be able to implement it in different areas of their child’s life. That’s it for me. I would be excited to hear about your experience in researching and finding and your questions about different techniques that you’ve tried with your children that you’ve struggled with. That is almost 100% of the families that I have worked with, with children with ADHD. The parents constantly report that they’ve done everything to help their child. They researched everything. And what they’ve done is this hodgepodge approach of pulling different things and trying them out and seeing if they work.
Use something that’s consistent and that supports itself and that will carry through throughout your child’s life. That’s it for me. I’d love to hear more from you. Let me know what you think and your ideas, your responses. I will read them and respond to them appropriately. And we will see you again next week.
Visit the ADHD Smarter Parenting page for additional ADHD resources.