Jennifer Gay Summers
Author | Journalist
Instead of going on a summer vacation this year, I find myself looking back on memories of ones gone by. One of the most memorable was when we took Lee to Alaska. Because she was impulsive, I had a habit of jumping to conclusions. But, in this blog, I learned to take the time to pause…
Welcome to my blog!
I’m a mom and an ex-public school teacher who’s been in the ADHD trenches for the last 20 years, navigating the school system and standing up to those who use judgment as their weapon against differences. At the same time, I’ve watched the gifts of ADHD help my daughter, Lee (pseudonym), blossom into a creative, intuitive, wise young adult.
Raising a child with ADHD is like living on a rollercoaster, riding to the top with your hopes soaring and racing down, holding on with all your strength. In my blog, I write about my crazy and not-so-crazy mom moments to offer encouragement, what insight I’ve gained, and some laughs along the way.
In December, I celebrated seven years of blogging for ADDitude magazine, my favorite national resource for people with ADHD. I’ve been called “Mom’s the Word” for many of those blogs, a name I hold dear to my heart. So often, I’ve felt anything BUT “Mom’s the Word.” My blog is dedicated to all you moms and dads struggling with that same frustration. Together, I believe we can raise awareness and help our children with ADHD succeed.
If you’re just starting down the path yourself, tape them to your bathroom mirror and remember, you are never alone. ...Photo Credit: AbMoriarty DesignsWhen Lee was diagnosed with ADHD at seven years old, I had no idea what to do. It felt like someone knocked the...
...Lee’s focus on catching a lizard was legendary. But, in the classroom, she was unable to focus on words or numbers and was diagnosed with ADHD in first grade. I learned that it is common for a child with ADHD, who has difficulty paying attention, to hyperfocus on...
After Lee was diagnosed with ADHD in first grade, we took her to a neurologist. She told us that Lee had symptoms of sensory processing disorder (SPD), which often occurs with ADHD. She explained that SPD occurs due to an imbalance in the central nervous system...
Summer is here, a season where time management often turns into a time warp. This summer, with vacations on hold and anxiety running high, time can feel endless. But, ADHD teens still need a structure that helps them take control of their lives. In this blog, Lee tackles the challenge of making it on time…
On Father’s Day, I pay tribute to my husband and our marriage that spans almost three decades. I wouldn’t be honest if I said we didn’t have our challenges, especially when our child was diagnosed with ADHD. In this blog, my husband and I realize that educating ourselves on ADHD and parenting together, as partners, is the way to bring us closer as a couple. And that turned out to be the best scenario for Lee:
The first blog I wrote for ADDitude was back when Lee was in seventh grade and hated to shop:
From Calm and Collected at the Mall with My Attention Deficit Daughter-Really!
“Every three months, my daughter comes home from middle school with the top of her Vans peeling off. “No way, Mom, they’re fine. I’m a tomboy. Live with it.” I look down at Lee’s toes, all five peeking through, and we eye each other. We both know what’s coming…the dreaded trip to the mall.” Read more…
In my more recent blog, I talk about the scary transition to middle school, when we parents face the huge challenge of taking a giant step back:
From What No One Ever Told Me About the Middle School Transition with ADHD:
“Despite the September heat, my friend, Melanie, and I set off for a morning walk down one of the steepest hills in our neighborhood. As we left, I could feel she was on the verge of tears and put my arm around her, giving her a quick squeeze. “Josh?” I said.” Read more…
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May is to celebrate mothers! May you have a day filled with joy, love and breakfast in bed. This blog pays tribute to all the special moms in our lives who’ve always had our backs. They deserve a shout-out, too!
Shopping Tips for ADHD Children
- Dress them in bright clothing that is easily recognizable.
- Have a plan of where to go before you get in the car.
- Park near the store, if possible.
- Never take your eyes off your child in the store.
- Ask for help to speed things along!
- Look for a cashier with no line.
- Have your money easily accessible. Don’t spend time having to fish it out of your wallet.
- Lee liked to pick up stray pins off the floor in clothing stores. Store clerks loved it. She kept busy nearby while I paid the bill. Just be sure to bring sanitary wipes!
- Keep to your plan…don’t throw in extra stores.
- Lee’s tip: Tell your child she/he will earn a reward for good behavior after the shopping trip is over.