Not so long ago I was a newbie to ADHD too. When my daughter was 3 years old, we were given an unofficial diagnosis. Our life continued on just as before. Relief came first, feeling as I knew from an early age that she was not like her peers, she was SPECIAL. That feeling was soon replaced by fear and dread. Questions soon started to flood my head “how will we manage this? What could I do to help her? Could she live a happy healthy life?”

The doctor explained that at her young age there was nothing else that could be done for her. We would have to wait until she was older. Leaving the hospital that day I felt deflated at the thought of life continuing on with no immediate help, advice or information regarding ADHD. Our Lives continued on just as before, although I had to learn and understand the ADHD through dealing with it daily as a parent. I found comfort and support in the ADHD West Cumbria group. Listening to other parents/ carers guided me through my own issues of which many had already faced.

For years I had counted down the days and weeks until my daughter would turn 6 years old. Finally she did in the April and from that point onwards we had letters, forms and appointments all flooding in. We attended our diagnosis appointment in December and it came as no surprise to me when the Doctor told me my 6 year old daughter had severe ADHD. For so long I had fought to get her the help and understanding she desperately needed and in that moment I felt triumphant.

Since then I have been diagnosed with ADHD as an adult which has answered a lot of questions and given me a whole new outlook on living with ADHD.

As a parent and fellow “ADHDer” I understand the fight we face to get the support and acceptance, from not only professionals but those closest to us. Life can be challenging for most people but to a family managing ADHD it can be a struggle. We as a support group aspire to help anyone and everyone through those troublesome times the best way we can. We have all had to learn on the job, but by sharing our experiences we aim to support and empower other families affected by ADHD.

I will leave you with my favourite ADHD quote-

ADHD doesn’t come with a manual! It comes with a family that never gives up!

Sarah-Jayne Thomas

Chair/Parent ADHD West Cumbria