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Taking back the role of being the parent from your child.

Reclaiming the parental role from a child involves re-establishing boundaries, roles, and responsibilities within the family dynamic.

Here are some steps and strategies to help in this process:

1. Reflect on the Current Situation

  • Identify the Issues: Determine specific instances where the child is assuming (you are abdicating) your parental role.
  • Understand the Causes: Reflect on how and why the roles became reversed. This could be due to stress, a parent’s absence, illness, or other family dynamics.

2. Communicate Openly and Honestly

  • Have a Family Meeting: Sit down with your child and other family members to discuss the issue. Pick the time and the place where this discussion would be most advantageous to all. Do not let the other person divert or subvert the conversation.
  • Make sure that all adults at the meeting present a unified stance.
  • Express Your Feelings: Let your child know how you feel about the role reversal without blaming them.
  • Acknowledge Their Efforts: Recognize and appreciate how your child has tried to help.

3. Re-establish Boundaries and Roles

  • Define Roles Clearly: Clarify each family member’s role. Make it clear that you are the parent and will take on the responsibilities of that role. Put these roles in writing and post them for all to see.
  • Set Boundaries: Establish and enforce appropriate boundaries for yourself and your child. Ask your child to respectfully announce when you and/or they infringe these boundaries.

4. Take Responsibility

  • Step Up as a Parent: Begin making decisions and taking actions that reinforce your role as the parent.
  • Show Consistency: Be consistent in your actions and decisions to rebuild trust and respect.

5. Seek Support and Resources

  • Professional Help: Consider family therapy, ADHD Coaching, or counseling to help navigate the transition.
  • Support Groups: Join support groups for parents to share experiences and strategies.
  • Taking back being a parent may be a long and arduous task, but it will be worth it to you and your child.

6. Empower Your Child in Age-Appropriate Ways

  • Involve Them in Decision-Making: Allow your child to have input in family decisions that affect them, but make it clear that the final decision is yours. Allow them more input as they show they are adhering to the program. Do not strive for perfection; demonstrate to your child that their input is, whenever possible, valuable and will be acted upon.
  • Assign Responsibilities: Give them age-appropriate tasks and responsibilities that reinforce their role as a child.

7. Practice Self-Care

  • Manage Stress: Take care of your own physical and mental health to better fulfill your parental role.
  • Set an Example: Model healthy behaviors and relationships for your child.

8. Rebuild the Parent-Child Relationship

  • Spend Quality Time Together: Engage in activities that strengthen your bond.
  • Show Affection and Appreciation: Regularly express love and gratitude towards your child.

Practical Tips

  • Create a Routine: Establish a daily routine that includes time for homework, chores, and family activities.
  • Set Clear Expectations: Clearly communicate your expectations regarding behavior, responsibilities, and family roles.
  • Use Positive Reinforcement: Encourage and reward positive behavior (no matter how small the gain) and adherence to the established roles.

Reclaiming the parental role is a process that requires patience, consistency, and open communication. By taking these steps, you can re-establish a healthy family dynamic and ensure that your child can enjoy their role as a child.

©2024 Harold Robert Meyer – All rights reserved
https://www.addrc.org/ info@addrc.org

Hal Meyer and The ADD Resource Center offer specialized behavioral intervention and educational services for ADHD. They empower adolescents, adults, couples, and their loved ones to manage ADHD symptoms and reach their full potential. They have the expertise to provide personalized guidance and unwavering support on the journey to success.

Harold Robert Meyer /The ADD Resource Center – http://www.addrc.org/ – 646/205.8080 06/17/2024

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