Practical Strategies for Managing Problem Behaviors

One of the many problems parents and families face with their children with ADHD, is not viewing their child with the “disability perspective” that promotes acceptance, support and empathy for the child with ADHD.

There are 5 tenets for this disability perspective:
˜ ADHD is a legitimate neurological condition that undermines the child’s ability to regulate behavior.
˜ Children with ADHD have the same need as other children to gain acceptance from others.
˜ Children with ADHD have the capacity to self-regulate their behavior and may fulfill this capacity with the aid of effective parenting strategies and treatment interventions.
˜ This behavior growth should be expected to be gradual rather than rapid and dramatic.
˜ The use of positive and supportive discipline strategies will be more effective than the use of punitive and rejecting strategies.

Here are a few warning signs that you might be straying from a “disability perspective:”
˜ You ask the “why” question and actually expect your child to be able to answer it.
˜ You expect your child to act differently tomorrow because of something you did today.
˜ You take your child’s misbehavior personally.
˜ You devote a lot of time and consideration trying to determine which misbehaviors are due to ADHD and which as due to other factors, such as motivation.
˜ You are concerned that you are rewarding your child too often and punishing him/her too infrequently.

4 thoughts on “Practical Strategies for Managing Problem Behaviors

  1. spear: fabulous post dude!

    momcat: bloody cheek- how much say does your child’s headmaster have? the teacher’s are not the ones who do the diagnosis!

    bluebabe: thank you for visiting and commenting, and i like your take on things. it is a very misunderstood disability.

  2. I love reading about ADHD and ADD from a parents perspective. I am an Occupational Therapist working at a school for children with intellectual and physical disabilities and in my limited experience(I have only been working here for a year) I have discovered that most people( teachers included) view ADD and ADHD as an illness like the flu that can be cured. I always tell the parents that I deal with that your child is like a person with Cerebral Palsy- you can’t cure it but you can sure develop methods to cope with it effectively.

    As for the positive reinforcement of a child, show me a single person in this world that does not respond better to positive reinforcement.

  3. ‘The use of positive and supportive discipline strategies will be more effective than the use of punitive and rejecting strategies.’ – I fight an ongoing battle with the teachers because this punitive attitude is the one they like the most. I keep telling them that my son works best with positive reinforcement. I have however had to resort to grounding (which I hate) for the major sin of wangling to miss school. My son is ADD and totally switches off at school especially with verbal lessons. His headmaster doesnt think giving ritalin is a good idea and he is not even on ritalin at the moment cause I cant afford it. The joys!

  4. Angel, I’d like to respond to this from the perspective of someone with ADD – the response is too long to post as comment so I am going to put it in my blog with a link to your post.

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