PARENTING THE CHILD WITH ADHD: Mum, Do You Think I Have a Bleak Future?

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You CAN reassure your kids that they have a bright future. “ Just because you don’t do school that well does not mean you’re going to have a bad time for the rest of your life.”Guest post by Freya Cheffers from
Never a Dull Moment – Life and ADHD


In the car this morning, my son Jasper, who has ADHD, said to me, “Mum, do you think I have a bleak future ahead?”

I took a deep breath, pushed my emotions aside and said this to my boy, “Honey you have the brightest, shiniest future ahead. Just because you don’t do school that well does not mean you’re going to have a bad time for the rest of your life. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.”

He then asked, “How do you know?”

I answered, “Because I was a lot like you at school. I found classes so boring. I couldn’t understand what the teacher was saying. I never got A’s and was always in trouble. I even hated art class! Because I couldn’t learn art the way they taught it to me!

Jas listened, a surprised look on his face. I continued while I had his attention.

As soon as I left school I didn’t look back. I went to TAFE (Australia’s Vocational and Training Schools) and did a course in hospitality. TAFE was so fun, so much better than school, and there I met my best friend Tam who I moved to Sydney with. We worked in restaurants and met people from all over the world, danced with new friends on beaches in Bondi at moonlight and became inspired to see more of the world. I saved up enough money and left Australia and went traveling through Asia on my own! Imagine that! I was 19!!! Tam went to Israel and Egypt. We met up in London, worked, partied and traveled more countries together.

I came home and became a chef. I started my own catering business, I ran restaurants.

I learned to paint and had 2 near sellout exhibitions with friends. I hated art at school but loved learning by painting with friends and looking through art books for inspiration.

I’ve opened shops, gone into fashion design, imported from Morocco and lived in Bali.

And my biggest achievement, I created you and your little brother!

I have my ADHD to thank for most of that and not once have I ever looked back and thought about school.”

Jas asked, “How come you have your ADHD to thank?

I responded, “I just know because I do life differently to others that are considered ‘normal’. My impulsivity leads me into new adventures. I learn kinesthetically and have a creative brain. I think outside of the box – just like you do. All of this, plus a large amount of excitable energy, has helped me be who I am today, even though I didn’t fit into the school system.

So to answer your question – you have a very bright future ahead, full of fun and adventure. No matter if you go college, TAFE, get a trade or a degree, or take some time out to go travelling. Life is one big adventure and you just have to find things you enjoy doing along the way, get good at those things, try new things, give everything and anything a go and you’ll be absolutely ok! Doesn’t that sound exciting?”

Jasper agreed, and said, “I definitely want to go traveling mum!” And I said, “You will for sure, just find work that helps you to travel!”

And I could see him thinking about his shiny future ahead, and I had a feeling that he had a feeling, everything is going to be ok.


About the author: Freya Cheffers lives in Cowaramup, Western Australia. She writes about her family and ADHD on her Facebook page, Never a Dull Moment – Life with ADHD. I follow her posts with interest.

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