Parenting is hard. Parenting a child with ADHD can be even harder. Here are five must-read books on my bookshelf for parents of children with ADHD. They are full of valuable tips and tricks for making parenting a little easier.
1. The Explosive Child by Ross W. Greene, PhD
Tired of endless screaming, hitting, biting, and kicking tantrums? In The Explosive Child: A New Approach for Understanding and Parenting Easily Frustrated and Chronically Inflexible Children, Dr. Greene teaches parents a new way of approaching inappropriate behaviors. A departure from the reward and punishment approach, this method arms parents with a new way of thinking about behavior, a prevention mindset, and collaborative problem solving tools. This book changed the way I parented my own children and informed my teaching of early childhood teachers in classroom management techniques as well. If you only read one book on parenting this year, make this the one.
2. Taking Charge of ADHD by Russell A. Barkley, PhD
Feel like you don’t quite know everything you want to know about ADHD? Then check out this gem of information. In Taking Charge of ADHD: The Complete Authoritative Guide for Parents, Dr. Barkley walks you through every aspect of the disorder including the causes, symptoms, diagnostic process, helping your child navigate school and friendships, and treatment options. Arguably the nation’s foremost expert on ADHD, Dr. Barkley has the clinical and research experience to inform parents in every aspect of this frustrating condition. Be prepared for heavy content, though. It’s fact-packed.
3. What to Expect When Parenting a Child with ADHD by Penny Williams
Would you rather hear some parenting advice from a mom who has survived and even thrived at raising a child with ADHD? Then this is the book for you! In What to Expect When Parenting a Child with ADHD, Penny Williams shares some advice from the parenting trenches. From adjusting your mindset to creating your village to helping your child in school, Penny walks parents through the hills and valleys of parenting a child with ADHD. Her tips are manageable, her advice is sage, and she’s funny. Let’s face it…a sense of humor helps everything.
4. Superparenting for ADD by Edward Hallowell, MD and Peter Jensen, MD
Looking for a combination of science and sentiment? Check out Superparenting for ADD: An Innovative Approach for Raising Your Distracted Child. Drs. Hallowell and Jensen introduce a novel perspective based on identifying your child’s strengths rather than focusing on the weaknesses. They use their combined 50 years of experience–including their own parenting–with ADHD to outline ways to uncover, celebrate, and develop your child’s gifts and talents and how to nurture a cycle of excellence rather than deficits. It’s a refreshing and hope-filled approach to parenting a child with ADHD.
5. Mindful Parenting for ADHD by Martin Bertin, MD
If practical exercises and action items appeal to you, check out this book. In Mindful Parenting for ADHD: A Guide to Cultivating Calm, Reducing Stress, and Helping Children Thrive, Dr. Bertin applies the benefits of mindfulness to parenting a child with ADHD. Using specific mindfulness-building exercises along with paper-and-pencil tasks and downloadable guided audio meditations, you (and your child) will learn responsiveness, intentionality, and compassionate communication techniques. It’s an engaging and interactive learning experience.
There are thousands of parenting books on the market today. Hundreds of them address the challenges of parenting a child with ADHD. These are just a few of the best. Happy reading!
From my brain to yours-
Amy Lawson Moore, PhD
Cognitive Psychologist & Child Development Specialist
Gibson Institute of Cognitive Research
Editor-In-Chief, Modern Brain Journal