5 Tips for Forgiving Yourself When You Make a Mistake with Your Child with ADHD

Forgive Yourself

I completely lost it. I was overwhelmed and needing sleep and I’m sure there were other reasons too, but none of that excused my behavior. 

My family, more than anyone else, sees me at my worst.

From talking to other moms and dads across the country, I know I’m not alone. 

We love our children more than words, but let’s be honest. It’s TOUGH to parent kids that don’t fit the mold, isn’t it? 

And because of how tough it can be, we sometimes lose our tempers, say things we shouldn’t say, or yell when we should use a gentler tone. 

That’s why I wanted to share 5 Tips for Forgiving Yourself When You Screw Up, just in case you (like me) struggle with this from time to time.

5 Tips for Forgiving Yourself When You Screw Up:

  • Acknowledge the mistake (and make it right with others if you need to).

The first thing you need to do when you screw up is admit it to both yourself and to anyone you might have hurt in the process. There is great power in speaking it aloud. My husband is really great at this. He is quick to admit his mistakes and ask for forgiveness. Me…not so much. 

Admitting fault feels like a weakness, but actually it’s a strength. It shows humility and wisdom, and it teaches your kids in the process. 

  • Think of it as a learning experience. 

Often when I first begin working with families, they accidentally allow their kids to eat something they shouldn’t. (It’s amazing how many items contain gluten that you’d never expect!) 

Many of these families feel terrible once they realize what they let happen. This is especially the case if their children have reactions to the gluten, either in their behavior or in the way they feel. 

What I tell these families is that this is a great learning experience. I encourage them to ask their kids, “How did your body feel after you ate that?” Or to talk with them about what they notice in their emotions: “You seem angrier today than you have been lately. Why do you think that is?” 

Helping our kids learn how food affects them is a great way to help them take ownership for their health. 

So remember, even if a mistake is made, it can still be a great learning experience!  

  • Remember that even if you take 3 steps forward and 2 steps back, you’re still moving forward! 

Don’t believe it if your inner critic is telling you that you failed! You might have taken a few steps back, but you’re still much further along today than you were a month ago or a year ago. Take note of how far you’ve come! 

  • Reach out to those in your tribe. 

One of the things I LOVE about my program is the encouragement the members provide to one another. Just last week a member of the program shared how frustrated she was feeling with her child, and before I even had a chance to comment, several of the other members had jumped to her side and told her they too could relate. 

We are a lot more alike than we are different, and realizing other people make similar mistakes can really help us forgive ourselves. 

  • If your best friend made the same mistake you did, what would you say to her? Tell yourself the same thing! 

Give yourself the same grace and kindness as you would extend to someone else.


For more details about how you can help reduce your child’s ADHD symptoms, sign up for my free online webclass today here>>.

And as always, I am not a medical doctor and the above post is based on my experience. No information on this site should be relied upon to make a medical diagnosis, treat, prevent or cure any disease or medical condition. 

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