Bad Report Card pain for kids with ADHD

Sharing a report card flashback from grade 11.

Just before the break I got my first term report card.  It was ok at best, better than the previous year and still nothing to jump up and down about.   Report cards can cause a lot of emotional pain for kids with ADHD.  It’s real and it hurts and you can help.

It didn’t matter if it was first grade or senior year, I could guarantee on every report card it would be the same comments as follows:

Jeff needs to focus during instruction time and use class time wisely to be more productive.

“Failure to complete this course will result in being removed from the graduation list and not graduating.”

It is your responsibility to complete and hand in all required assignments.

“Works hard in the shop, could put more effort into paperwork.”

Jeff participates well in the shop; attention to detail could improve.

Ok now for the course that I love…

Good grades on classes I'm into

One year I hid my report card because there was no point, I knew what was on it and didn’t care if I showed it to my parents or not.

Kids who struggle in school have shame, even when they are super supportive we know deep down inside that our parents will be disappointed.

We don’t want to disappoint our parents. No kid likes to disappoint their parents.

I remember hating getting report cards, it was my unwelcome reality check, “I can’t do this.”  If you are reading this and thinking kids like me just need to try harder, it’s probably not the case. What we really need is your help.

This is how:

1 – Help us keep track of what is due.  Even at 19,  I struggled daily with remembering what I’m suppose to be doing.

2-  Talk to us about what we are struggling with and why.  It could be a personality  issue with the teacher or we we may not understand the work.  Both of those may require your intervention.

3 – Help us with the basics like making sure we are eating and getting enough rest.  Provide opportunities for us to do physical activities to calm our brains.

4 – Push a little harder sometimes, not all the time.  When we have an important exam coming up,  that is the time to threaten to take something important away until our homework or studying is done.

Last of all, don’t sweat the report card.  Use it as a tool to talk about how things are really going.  (NO judgement!)

Parents, don’t be an a** to your kids , they are doing their best.  It may not look like it to you but they are trying WAY harder than kids without ADHD.  Help them out more and everyone wins.

Kids, don’t be an ungrateful brat to your parents, they are doing their best.  Help them understand what you need to be successful at school with your calm words and patience.  Eventually they will figure it out.  Hey, we need them the most.


Related: Watch for my next post on a career detour due to an issue with an instructor in college last month.  ADHD doesn’t go away just because the calendar says we are an adult now!

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