So Alone: I feel so alone and depressed... - CHADD's ADHD Pare...

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So Alone


I feel so alone and depressed. I wish I was not a parent and wish I could give up. I try and try but feel like I get nowhere. I feel like a failure. Have any other parents felt this way before? I feel so stressed out and like such a bad mom.

34 Replies

Hello, I’ve just come across your post and I’m in the uk but I do have a little man with both adhd and autism and I’m

A single mother of 2. It’s a rollercoaster and certainly I have my days like that too, but pls don’t suffer alone. It helps to talk and if you don’t have a support network ok here, do you have any good friends ? I would also definitely advise speaking to your Gp, this was a last resort for me and now I wish I had done it sooner. Sending you warmth and light and there is an ear over here if you need it. Zoe x

This definitely can feel like a very isolating experience. I’ve had to really lean on my family this summer for help and support. I have a hard time asking for help, but please make sure you do so, as we can’t do this alone. I also needed to visit my own doctor and get help for myself. It’s like the airplane scenario, we have to put our masks on so that we can help others. Please keep talking to family and friends. And get help from your own doctor if needed as well. It really helped me.

Parenting is tough! kids require a lot and don't appreciate it like we would want. But, they are used to you caring for them. Show grace to yourself and to them, and remember that a bad day does not make a bad parent. Kids don't remember the hard times like we do, unless it is the norm. They are resilient and forget much that we hold onto. I used to apologize to my adult kids about things that I felt so bad about and they didn't remember them till I told them. Just remember, love covers a multitude of sins. Tell them you love them often and give hugs liberally, they are healing for both of you. For your peace and health, it is good to take magnesium and ginseng, they calm the mind body and spirit and get rid of sticky negative thoughts that loop. Get outside, make kids get outside for everyone's health, go on nature walks, pick up memorable little things like pretty flowers, rocks and things, it is renewing to see nature. Walk barefoot outside to get grounded again too. You are a good mom, or you wouldn't worry about it. Blessings and peace. <3

Excellent! A bad day doesn’t make a bad mom ... Not a bad kid! Good job.

Hi. I am so sorry you are feeling like this. I hope things get better soon.

When I had my first son, I was a single parent for seven years. Then met my hubby, married and two more little men for me to raise. NOW this is the time when all hell broke loose. My mother questioning EVERYTHING... my parenting style, choices, and suspecting my hubby of being controlling! I felt that I could not do anything, caught between my hubby and her. Let's face it I became super angry, short and isolated. It did not help that I was alone most of the time because my hubby had to work (ALOT!)

In the end, I have to have strong boundaries with my family and especially my mother. I had to take a stand with the way I wanted my boys to be raised....lift my chin up and march forward!! I needed to make choices, mistakes, and gain true support form some amazing people. This community definitely helps too!! This whole process took about 3 years but today I feel amazing!!

Today, my oldest is in the US Marines, aaaand still calls his Momma!! LOL The other two are doing great! How do I know? Because they are loving /caring, hard working, and they are all the light of my life. I just love going to work and talking about the crazy thoughts/ideas/ situations that happen often at our home. Or I get some random phone call with the craziest questions...Marine!?!?

Sorry to ramble on, but I had a horrible childhood ****years of therapy have helped**** to realize that I have unresolved PTSD from my childhood along with ADHD. I was a shell of a more!

I can say today, after YEARS of feeling the same way you do...there is hope! Like the above replies, take care of yourself first and foremost ...the rest will fall in place.

Virtual hug to you, as tight as you might need. But not creepy. lol


Besides listening to others on here and getting professional help when you can, go to You Tube and find Pax Tools for parents. These are pieces of the Pax Good Behavior Game used in elementary school that train kid brains and save teachers and parents sanity. Good luck! Chin up! One hour ata time.

I am so sorry. It is SO HARD to raise kids with challenges. Don’t beat yourself up for being stressed. Just because we fail doesn’t make us FAILURES. I end many nights feeling guilty for not handling my son’s meltdown/neediness/anger as I should. COVID makes everything so much worse. But you need to first take care of yourself so you can be strong for your family. Please don’t take this for anything other than what it is but could you be depressed? You clearly deeply love your family or you wouldn’t be on here looking for help. I can’t tell you what to do as I don’t know you, and I won’t lie and say “it gets better!” Because we all know there are ebbs and flows. What I CAN say is TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF, somehow. It takes a lot out of us parenting these kids, as glorious, special, exhausting and ever-changing as they are. And yes, we all end some days feeling like crap and like we failed. But every day is new and none of us have instruction manuals or crystal balls. We are human. Try to pick your battles. Best advice therapist ever gave me. He gave me permission to give up, sometimes. It’s ok. But please take care of yourself so you can be strong for the ones you love. I wish I could give you a big hug.

Hello, we have a 9 year old with ADHD and we also have felt like failures. It's very hard and trying on your patience. Don't be discouraged and know that as long as you're trying your best It's all you can do... also, chadd is a great source for parents with children who have ADHD. Best wishes Brian K.

I often feel this way. Like others said - it’s a roller coaster. Enjoy the ups, and have someone you can talk to on the downs. It is NOT easy. I’m 9.5 years into dealing with my ADHD kiddo. I knew he was different from the start. I’m on the down part of my rollercoaster right now, so I get it. Just hang on. It has to get better...

I knew my little boy was different from the start too! He just turned 9 and sometimes I wish I could fast forward to when is he grown up, happy, healthy and able to handle his struggles successfully .

Oh how I hope we all get there. Happy, Healthy Grownups!!! That would be such a blessing.

You are not alone. I often feel like this and I know I am doing the best I can but still feel a lot of guilt and I wish I wasn’t dealing with all of this. How old is your child and what are the current challenges?

You will get lots of good advice here and we can all commiserate.

My son is 9. He struggles with anger outbursts, snapping at people, arguing, constantly saying "I know" rather than listening, lying, bullying behavior to his brother and annoying behavior like getting right up in people's faces making annoying sounds/ touching them on their face. My main concern is his anger outburts. I'm nervous he will scare away any friends he has.

I'm feeling like that right now. Especially after my 9yo ADHD son randomly decided to confront a kid that bullied him last year on the bus at the park yesterday by riding past him on his bike, flipping him off, and calling him the "n" word...a word that not only did we not teach him because it's abhorrent, but goes against our deep seated core values in our family. I'm disgusted by his actions yesterday, not only as a mother but as a human. I hate that I immediately had to go into damage control mode, yet again, because my son is not only ruining his own reputation and making himself into a pariah, but is now taking his whole family down with him. As much as I want to give up, throw in the towel, and just send him away, I can't. I'm sick of this shit, and there's nothing I can do about it. It's both infuriating and sad. I'm sorry you're feeling this way; just know you're not alone. If you want someone to talk to, feel free to PM me. I'm sure I could use an outlet myself.

So, so sorry you are going through all of that. If only we could just read all of the parenting books and everything would be hunky dory. Big hugs to you.

No kidding! If only huh! I sure wish parenting was that easy. It is the hardest job I have ever had to do. I just want my son to be happy and I want to be happy as well. I dont know how to make myself happy when he is not though and that is a big problem for me right now.

Of course I would love to talk more with you. I'm not sure how to PM you though. Dont judge I'm so bad at online technology! I'm so sorry to gear about what you're going through as well!! I can relate in so many ways unfortunately. I too get disgusted at my sons actions and feel just like you mentioned above "As much as I want to give up, throw in the towel, and just send him away, I can't" That's how I feel in a nut shell. Please let me know how we can chat more :)

This may not help much, but please know that you are NOT alone! I had to go through a whole rigamarole to change my password so I could get logged in here just to let you know that you are not alone and to hand in there! There have been many days when I've thought or said out loud, "I'm not able to be the mother my child needs." Those thoughts are liars, and I know I'm doing my best. You are doing your best. Just that you are worrying about it means you are doing your best. If you can, try to get help for yourself - medication and therapy - if need be so you can better function to care for your child. Sending you strength!

Acfoger1018 in reply to plantdoc

Thank you so much. I wish I had all of you in my daily life. You make me feel like I can do this and that I'm not alone. I dont want to be depressed and especially do t want to be that way around my little boy. Is it okay to show that you are depressed in from of your child or is it more damaging to them if they see you cry, mope around, etc?

I too am in a place of not really having friends or family who can understand or be supportive. I have complex PTSD and thought for the past couple years that I was losing my mind because I felt like my son was becoming my biggest constant trigger. Then I learned that having a child with these kinds of challenges can legitimately be traumatizing to a parent, which makes sense why some parents may especially struggle more than others to cope, depending on what they're still trying to deal with from their own childhood or past. This is something I've agonized over for a long time, trying to put my finger on as to why I can get thrown into such an emotional tail spin over my son's challenges, when I know there are other parents who have more on their plate than I do. Recognizing that has allowed me to give myself permission to practice more self care. Its hard to keep the perspective that it's not so much that you're failing, as it is you are a human being with your own reasonable limits, and are also worthy of being cared for. There has been plenty of times my son has seen me cry, from times when his behavior hurt my feelings, to times when I have been just frustrated and exhausted. At those times, I am just honest about how my heart feels at that moment about the situation, and not blaming my feelings on him, or venting emotions. I think it has been good for him to see my human side as a mom, and to see the emotional effects that these situations can have on family members. Those times have had some of the most impact on his awareness of how his actions impact others. There are also times when I hide in the bathroom because my emotional state is not anything that could be of any good to anyone, so it's a bit of both. Hang in there.

plantdoc in reply to Acfoger1018

A therapist can also really help, if you can find someone who can meet with you virtually. I love my therapist; she's been so helpful in encouraging me to allow myself time to be "selfish" by taking care of my needs. Put your oxygen mask on first before you help your son. That's the hardest part. Somedays is feels as though my son just picks fights with me or his siblings on purpose, and it's SO HARD to step back and find what he needs. For us, I think I'm recognizing that he needs more positive interactions so he's not clamoring for negative attention so much. But that is also SO HARD. Sometimes, it's just taking a moment when he's quiet to sit next to him and just be next to him quietly until he decides to lead the conversation, if at all. Everyone wants to be SEEN, and sometimes it's difficult to see through all the ...stuff... to see.

But to your point, I would think it's okay to let your son know that you're having a difficult moment and need to take a time out. I do that - I tell my kids that I am not handling my emotions well, so I'm going to go sit alone for a bit, so stay in the house/yard and be safe. I'll be back in 5-10 minutes. Then I find a quiet place to breathe. If you can't leave your son alone for a moment or two so you can breathe, maybe see if he can breathe with you. But as silly as it sounds, breathing in and out to the count of 5 in, 5 out really does help bring the emotional level down a few notches - as long as one focuses on the breathing and not the issue that worked them up in the first place (I struggle with this).


Acfoger1018 in reply to plantdoc

Thank you!! Your words are so helpful! I will remind myself of these tips you've shared and will continue to keep trying. How old are your kids? Are they all grown up or are they still little?

Thank you all so much for the advice, love and support. I truly wish hugs were possible through the internet because I could really use one. I dont have any friends to confide so having all of you to talk with makes a HUGE difference. You guys are right life does eb and flow and there are good days as well as the bad ones. I was having a very bad week or so and that is when I felt the need to post as I was feeling extremely down and like I could not get back up. Again, thank you for the great advice and the support. I appreciate all of you.

PM me anytime. I have a 5 1/2 year old, and this summer has been really tough, so I can relate!

I would love to! I'm going to google this PM thing. I feel silly but I dont know how to do it.

Go to my profile and you will see 2 little talk bubbles, that’s where you can send me a private message :)

If it’s possible for you, sounds like talking to a therapist could really help. Mine is GREAT - she specializes in families with special needs, and she has a son with adhd/autism. She GETS it... most “regular” parents just don’t. It’s so isolating, even from young school age when the other parents are chatting over coffee while the kids play, but you can’t join in - your kid still requires your full attention like a toddler. My therapist also sees teens with special needs, so she provides insights for how what we are doing or not doing now could play out in the future. I also struggle with that problem of how much do I need to hide my struggles from my kids. Sometimes my fuse is so short :-(. Take care and know you’re not alone!

I completely understand this feeling. Sending you love and light and strength. You can do this!

I have had so many experiences with my son almost exactly like what you describe. He is a charming, funny, sweet guy with almost no verbal filter. He has said very hurtful things that do not reflect our family values, or even his own! Sometimes he even looks shocked at what come out! He also tends to hyper focus on any perceived wrong. Medicine has helped as has our mantra "think before you say say or do". Finally, it helps me to remember that our children are their own people and we have to work at not being embarrassed by association. People may be judgmental, but they do not walk in our shoes. I try to not judge other parents after this lesson has been so painfully delivered to me!

Acfoger1018 in reply to abryans

Hi! Would you mind talking more about how your son hyper focuses on the perceived wrong? I feel like my son does this too but want to know more to see if what I'm thinking is the same. I used to feel like my son needed a disclaimer whenever playing with a new kid and still feel like I have to explain away my son when he acts "crazy" or unlike the other kids. Ugh! I hate that I feel this way.

I don't log in enough to this site, but I am literally in tears reading your original post and all the responses. I had a similar week. My son has been aggressive with us at home for a while and while we have sometimes it gets better, it feels like we are constantly just trying all these different programs and techniques and it literally requires all my mental and physical energy. An i don't feel like i've made enough progress as today for the first time he hit my mother as she was watching him. This made me feel like such a failure. That said, I know i am logically doing all i can which at the moment includes staying up each night reading and trying to study Barkley's book on how to raise your defiant child and his ADHD book and reviewing everything my psychotherapist has provided. I hate feeling this way and thinking about regretting having children, but the thoughts are there and they feel very real sometimes, and i can't get rid of them. I know I'm likely at the point where seeking help is necessary and my thoughts are unhealthy, but i agree with what everyone has said. There are some days and weeks that are just slightly better than others and having 1 day without a severe tantrum feels awesome and going a full week is like we hit the lottery so I just need to focus on when those rare moments do happen.

My son is only 6 but he has such extremes. He can be the most loving kid on the planet one minute, and the next he is literally trying to do physical harm if he doesn't get his way. I have learn to talk him through once he gets to that point much better than I used to handle it in the past, but it takes so much of my energy and patience. And there have been many times i have broken down in front of him as a result. And I agree other parents don't get it at all. So finding support is difficult and i think this network has done wonders for me. Anyway, i've never tried PM either but truly get the sense of feeling lonely so I'm willing to talk whenever too if you ever needed it.

Let me know if you wanna chat.

I completely understand where you are and coming from!! This is exactly why I am here now because I feel like I'm on the verge of a nervous breakdown and not a single person I know seems to be around, care or understand where I'm coming from. I'm here if you need an ear. We can help each other!

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