Self-Care - Parenting Child with Mental Illness

Raising a child with mental illness usually comes with a healthy dose of "mom guilt," and raising a child with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is no exception. While a little "mom guilt" keeps me on my toes, sometimes it becomes debilitating, so I was relieved to find out that ADHD and "mom guilt" are co-occurring problems that many parents struggle with. I'm not alone, and neither are you.
Maintaining mental health over the holidays can be a real challenge for teens and young adults with mental illness. With 64% of mentally ill people finding holidays stressful, according to a study by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), it is important to find ways to stay healthy during the holidays. So read on for holiday mental health tips.
A lot of energy goes into changing the world for our children, and that's before childhood mental illness joins our parenting struggles. If it's been a rough day for my son, in terms of his disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (DMDD) especially, I have barely enough energy to make dinner, let alone "change the world." Making change for our children is important to me, though. After dealing with childhood mental illness the last few years, I've realized that, sometimes, the world around my son needs more of a "cure" than he does.
Staying mentally healthy as a parent of a child with mental illness can be a struggle. It's difficult to watch your child experience depression, angry outbursts, or suicidal thoughts. Being a parent means having an extraordinary capacity for love, and with that comes an extraordinary capacity for worry. Your child can't make it without you, though, so it's important to recognize when you need to reach out for help, too. You need to stay mentally healthy for your child with a mental illness.
A child's mental illness isolates the whole family. Social anxiety, unpredictable outbursts, sensory issues--all these things can make the outside world exhausting for your child (Mental Illness, Isolation, and Loneliness). Judgment, stigma, and fear make it exhausting for parents. Isolation in childhood mental illness is our biggest enemy. Fight it.
Self-care is critical for parents raising children living with mental illness. As parents, we tend to put our child's needs ahead of our own. This doesn't work. I've put together a list of eight self-care tips for parents of children with mental illness.
Hiya Parents! As 2013 ends, I've been thinking about the past year and the different ways Bob, my son with ADHD, has grown. I've also been reviewing the past year for the top ten posts that you've enjoyed. As I went through them, I realized that I've grown a lot as a parent. So much of our time is spent ensuring that our kids are growing up well that we forget that we grow, too. So here's a round-up of my top ten posts just to inspire you to have an amazing 2014 with your special needs child! Thank you so much for making it a great 2013. Happy New Year!
For me, calling for back up is very difficult. But, when parenting a child with mental illness and feeling like I'm not able to deal, calling for back up is the best thing I could do. If you're like me, you have a hard time asking for help because you want to make sure everything gets done right. The hardest challenge I've had in parenting Bob is being comfortable asking for help. Below are some reasons why making a call for back up can be good for you.
To keep your cool while parenting a child with mental illness sometimes takes every drop of your energy. Especially when you're annoyed, upset, cranky, irritated or just plain stressed out. Getting upset is a normal thing for all people, but it takes a few tricks to keep your anger in check. And when you can keep your cool, your child will, too. Here are three steps you can use to keep your anger in check and calm down.
I talk a great deal about self-care for parenting a child with mental illness. The task isn't easy. Not only are you responsible for this child, but you also need to address his or her mental illness. We spend so much time caring for our kids that we don't have time to care for ourselves.