Mom, why can't we get along? (ADHD)

Updated: Jul 31, 2021

by Thomas Etienne

For as long as I remember, my relationship with my mother was always tense. My condition made it harder to connect with her. My mother is not diagnosed, but I suspect she also has ADHD. She is not impulsive like me, but she has other symptoms. She was the one who realized early on that something was wrong with me. There was dyslexia, as well as several school reports explaining that I was very impulsive. She noticed similarities with her. Today our relation is variable, there are highs, but there are also many lows. My mother is a demanding person for academic success because she also suffered from the same academic difficulties. She does not want me to go through the same obstacles. Those requirements and expectations harm our relationship. My conflict with her is not only related to my ADHD; it is mainly related to my opposition disorder. During our confrontations, there is a lot of screaming and crying; I also make various threats. I have often discussed my impulsivity and my lack of focus, which are the major problems of my condition. It is still difficult for her to understand why I react this way. The issue is, I try to have some inhibition, but often, I cannot control my anger. My father wanted to solve the problem and determine what was causing the conflict between my mom and me. He tried to get to the bottom of our issues.

Of course, my impulsiveness and inattention were the main issues. Why my lack of attention? When I am not taking my medication, I do not have the motivation or the concentration to finish my homework. As I explained, my mother believes it is essential to complete all my schoolwork. I do not think her attitude will change anytime soon. When she realizes that we are constantly arguing, it reminds her of what she has lived. When I was younger, my mother felt a lot of pain and shame because of my behaviour when we were out in public. The judgment of others made her feel guilty and incredibly sad. My parents are pretty different. My father is conciliatory; my mother is more rigid. As my father reminds me, my mother is strict, but it allows me to achieve better academic results and therefore helps with my self-esteem.

How did we improve our bond?

1) My father makes sure that I have taken my medication in the morning, so my attention span is improved, and I can complete my work. So my mother is then satisfied.

2) We reviewed together with her the neurological reasons for my frequent impulsivity.

3) She participates in all our outdoor activities.

4) She is entitled to one or two hugs if she behaves daily.

That is why I can say today, mom and I finally we get along.

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