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Frustration can feel like the baseline emotion for our kiddos with ADHD/ASD.
I was talking with a mom in France about this this morning.
Their dysregulated nervous systems are stressed as they try to organize and respond to the rapid input of the world around them.
I’m 50 and I’m confused a lot of the time because of my slower processing speed.
In an ordinary social or classroom setting, others may see a puzzled look on our faces and know they need to do something different to help us keep up.
In this remote environment or in a classroom environment where everyone wears a mask, we can’t count on others to spot our frustration and rescue us from having to self-advocate.
My boys are having similar difficulties. They were used to teachers approaching them when they appeared to be stuck. At home they simply didn’t ask for help and got dangerously behind on their work.
Frustration is the emotion you feel in response to things not working. For folks with ADHD/ASD, that’s how life can feel much of the time.
Our kids need to know that frustration IS NOT the way it has to be. Life doesn’t have to be an adversary. Instead, life can be a mission to fill in the gaps.
Where there is frustration there is a gap. There’s knowledge or a skill that’s needed so what isn’t working works better. The objective is to find it.
Our kiddos will make countless excuses and even lie to avoid tasks that leave them feeling more frustrated than they already do.
Throw some curiosity and a sense of adventure in there and perhaps s/he will be more willing to conquer that gremlin once and for all.
Remind them the reason it isn’t working is because there’s a gap. It isn’t because they’re dumb, the task is stupid or anything else. The gap is the issue.
It isn’t personal, there’s no one to blame and there isn’t an adversary (per se).
There’s simply a problem to be solved.