My 6 year old with ADHD often sits at the dinner table with her knees up in front of her on the chair. It drives my husband nuts and he often scolds her for it and yells at her and says to sit the right way or else she can’t eat. True sometimes this results in more crumbs on floor since she is not really eating over the table. I’m just happy she’s sitting and not getting up and down. I’m struggling with how important it is to sit “right” at the table. Is it terrible to let her do that or is that enforcing bad manners? I tried pushing her chair in to get her closer to table but she sometimes whines when I do and doesn’t want to do that. Not sure if she does this at school (probably not since chairs are not as deep but I don’t know) and we don’t go out to eat much but I haven’t noticed her going it when we are out. Should I confront my husband and just let her sit and eat that way or be on my husband’s side scolding her?
I just think she has trouble sitting still and comfortably and not trying to be a bad kid, but sometimes it’s hard to determine what to attribute to condition and what she actually can control and chooses not to.
My daughter is now nearly 13 and we DO eat together now - but that is a recent development. When she was little we stopped having family dinners. I get SO irritated and annoyed when I see article and article post after post about how important it is to have family dinners togethers. I think it is completely FALSE. My opinion (and no I am not a psychologist) is that it is important for parents and children to CONNECT and feel safe with one another. It is important for your child to grow up having a large file of happy secure memories. My WORST memories from my own childhood are from sitting at the table getting yelled at during dinner. The same thing starting happening in my own family. My ADHD child would be spinning around making a huge mess, husband would get mad and annoyed, I would be trying desperately to keep it all together and relieve the stress. Family dinner always ended with me in the bathroom crying. One day when my daughter was about 5 - I decided NO MORE. I made food and left it in the kitchen. People could eat whenever they wanted. I ate alone. My child could pick at food throughout the night. If needed I let her watch netflix through dinner. Was it my dream family dinner time? NO not at all. However, everyone ate, no one was angry, and there was peace in the home. In the late evenings we took long meandering walks together and that was bounding and connecting. I would read stories allowed while AHDH child spun on the floor. Everyone was happy and went to bed in peace. I think home life is very different for people who have ADHD children and I think it is OK to make our own rules and do what works for us!