On Being a Homeschool Mom with ADHD

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This post is going to be all over the place because that’s how my thoughts are at present.

But I feel really compelled to write right now.

This isn’t a good picture to represent this topic…I just needed an image for this post and I didn’t want to spend a ton of time seeking out the perfect image. Because, yes, I really do obsess on my blog images sometimes and that can get me completely off track when I have a topic I want to just write about.

Hmmm, maybe that actually does tie into the topic…but I don’t want to spend an extraordinary amount of time getting sidetracked on the image today…

So I just took a pic of my desk. Which is surprisingly neat today. Weird.

Someone was asking on one of the Facebook ADHD homeschool groups I’m on…Looking specifically for a podcast by an ADHDr…and I was thinking about how much I probably did mention my struggles in the episodes of The Savvy Homeschool Moms podcast…(hell, we had a nasty review once from someone that commented about how our show was always about how “Tina can’t get her act together” or something like that, so CLEARLY I talked about it!)…but I don’t really remember because it’s been on hiatus so long.

That post on Facebook also got me thinking about this blog. I had my daughter create my logo, the “squirrel on fire” specifically because I want to focus on the ADHDness of my homeschooling. It’s who I am, and it’s very much my struggle.

And I really want this blog and my own struggles to help others with similar struggles. I know there are a LOT of us out there.

I didn’t post a whole lot about all my struggles as I was going through them because:

  1. I wasn’t aware that I had ADHD for quite a while (I just thought I was a screw up) and…
  2. I didn’t want to air dirty laundry, I suppose.

And also, in the back of my mind was always the fear…as a homeschooler, we always, I think, worry about what might be misconstrued by some nosey busy body on the internet that decides that they need to be our children’s savior and report us to authorities. I know that is often in the back of so many of our minds, isn’t it?

I honestly can say that nothing I’ve ever done would warrant any authorities…but just having a call would be enough stress to upend our lives in a huge way and honestly, cause lasting emotional damage for both myself and my very sensitive children and husband. All 4 of us are very anxiety-prone and I simply didn’t want to even go there. So I haven’t posted about a lot of my struggles because it just hasn’t been worth the risk for me, ya know?

In addition, there is the judgment.

I don’t really care about how strangers feel about me. I’m good about that. Don’t give a damn what people on the internet think of me that don’t actually know me.

But people that know me…and judge me…that hurts. Especially since I am prone to a “little” thing called RSD that is such a “fun” part of being ADHD.

Rejection sensitive dysphoria is extreme emotional sensitivity and pain triggered by the perception that a person has been rejected or criticized by important people in their life…
It’s not that people with attention deficit disorder (ADHD or ADD) are wimps, or weak; it’s that the emotional response hurts them much more than it does people without the condition. No one likes to be rejected, criticized or fail. For people with RSD, these universal life experiences are much more severe than for neurotypical individuals. They are unbearable, restricting, and highly impairing.


SOOO, all this is why I haven’t written as much about my struggles as I would have liked to.

BUT, I am reaching a point now where I am coming to the end of my homeschool journey. My daughter is 2 years out of school, my son is homeschooling high school now and we are FINALLY in a groove (not that that will last). And I am, for the first time EVER, feeling actually fairly confident in how things are going!

My final homeschooling child has a curriculum and routine now THAT WORKS for him. (Can I get a HALLELUJAH????) And he is making progress in leaps and bounds! Without struggle! And we are having some amazing and wonderful discussions! I am SO HAPPY!

We started homeschooling officially in the 2006/7 school year. It’s been a LONG journey with many ups and downs. MANY struggles.

Turns out my daughter is also ADHD (got her official diagnosis this year) and I have some unconfirmed suspicions about my son. So the struggles have been very real and very intense on our homeschool journey, but we have made it through the worst!

And I am ready to share more about them with you in the coming days. I hope they will help others with similar struggles. If nothing else, to know that you are SO not alone.

I want my blog to be that blog that doesn’t show the homeschool mom with the picture-perfect home, kids, and routine. That constantly spews memes and platitudes about how much she LOVE LOVE LOVES homeschooling and how FANTABULOUS it is! Because it isn’t always. And it can be DAMN HARD!

ESPECIALLY when your own brain is working against you. And THEN, when you FINALLY get your brain in order, YOUR KIDS don’t cooperate!!

Oh the stories I can share with you! Not once have I ever had a plan work out completely right! NOT ONCE!!!

I tend to be a flying-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kinda homeschooler.

Because with this shiny brain, and at least one, potentially 2, shiny kids….plans ALWAYS go awry!

So stick with me…lots more to share with you on my squirrely adventures! And lots more details on ADHD homeschooling to come!

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