• Wendy Zanders

How my son and I bonded over our ADHD diagnoses

Updated: Oct 4, 2020

Are you struggling with something in your life and you're just too embarrassed to tell your kids?

Open up. Don’t be ashamed. Let them in.

I struggled with ADD all my life and didn’t know it.  And when my son got diagnosed with ADHD, it crushed him.  He didn't know it, but seeing him hurt crushed me too. I felt guilty and blamed myself because maybe this was somehow my fault. He didn't know it, but we were more alike that he could possibly know.

But how would he know, if I don't tell him?

Not wanting to have him struggle in silence, I decided to share my own experiences with him. I told him about how hard it was growing up undiagnosed and he said, “really?” with his eyes wide and full of wonder.

Well, if you know me, I don't really walk around all defeated.  ADD for me was more like an invisible string that tends to pull me in all sorts of directions, all at once. Somehow I knew, I shouldn't walk defeated because I've got to own "ME" and everything that came with myself. I thought, "I'll just have to put in twice as much work than everyone else did, if not more!"  But you know? Even though I didn't look like it on the outside, I struggled - on the inside, I struggled silently.

My teachers thought I was different. I knew I was, but never quite figured out exactly why. Imagine my shock when I found out in my 30s that I had ADD. Suddenly, it all started to make sense.

Talking about my ADD & his ADHD made us reflect on how blessed we were to have each other. Who would have known, right?  But this (diagnosis) isn't a death sentence, this is a chance to do even better! I mean, there are lots of other folks out there who are making a difference in the world despite their diagnosis. Michael Phelps, Adam Levine, Justin Timberlake, Simone Biles... the list goes on and on.

Opening up to my son that day helped us bond on a much deeper level. We became each other's best friend. It also made me realize how trust is built from our vulnerability.

When we talk about our vulnerability with those we care about the most, they open up too.  So, don't be embarrassed about your struggles.

Your kids love you and need you to be their mom. They need to witness you grow, as they grow. See you laugh and even cry. Make mistakes, fix mistakes, and even accept that mistakes happen. Show your kids the value of opening up and being vulnerable. The only way we can teach them to share their thoughts is if you do too.

If you know anyone who would benefit from my content, please feel free to share this with them. It's about time we break the stigma of our silent struggles, let's be each other's advocate. You are enough! You are loved! You are making a difference!

If you are struggling with ADD and don’t know where to start on your decluttering journey, schedule a 20 minute consultation with me and let’s chat!

How my son and I bonded over our ADD diagnoses


Wendy Zanders


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