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Thank you for this. My son has ADHD and SPD and I feel like the shittiest parent who has ever parented most of the time too.


Yep... Been there...Done that... Still going though it. Just curious, if I can ask, how do you other kids handle this? I find my other kids are very angry and resentful, and it just makes me very sad. My PDD kiddo is my oldest and 17, and her siblings are all younger.

Susan Getgood

What a lovely post Carmen. I am honored everyday to know you.

Bee Belle

My son has Crohn's disease - also invisible, and despite a school health plan and 504 it is so, so hard for teachers (much less other folks) to understand that yes, he may suddenly need 4 bathroom trips in an hour - they really don't want bloody diarrhea in the classroom, right? Also, when the pain levels get above a six he still comes to school, but his attention is scattered and he is short-tempered. But, when this goes on for weeks and weeks with no solution, we can't just miss that much school, and he can't tolerate the plain pain meds. He is now 13 and things are pretty good, but he still missed a week of school at the end of last quarter, for which one of his lovely teachers marked him down, commenting on the report card "Please get back to the go-getter you were at the beginning of the quarter. You must attend class and participate fully." For the record, I've never been a fan of the school-sponsored skate nights on a school night anyway, so my kids missed it not because of a sibling but because of me. We miss the fundraisers and just donate and do something quieter on our own.


This is so very well expressed. Wonderful words as always.


Well written, Carmen. {{}}

Karen Z

You are the strongest woman I know!


Thank you for writing this! I can so relate. I have a 11 year old aspie boy and my 13 daughter was just diagnosed aspie also. It is a lot of hard work.

Sarah B.

I have a son with ADHD and Asperger's. He's 12 now, and it's getting exponentially harder because he's also gifted academically. So his teachers don't think he needs a single intervention. But then he gets suspended because there aren't any interventions and he flips his lid one day.

Salvador Dali, indeed.


I was that kid 40+ years ago, and am only just dealing it in the last year or two. Thank God for Mama's like you and mine - I appreciate all she did/tried to do for me more each day!


Grr! Hate auto correct - that should have said 'only just realizing it'


So well written, I wish it could be required reading. Stay stron, hang in there.


You are doing AMAZING! Life is just way more complicated than everyone else thinks. Your daughter & the rest of your family are extremely lucky to have you!

Simone aka Christopher's mom

Hugs from CT! You are doing better than you think - always remember that and all will be okay. She will be okay also because she is learning to persevere which alllllways makes for a better adult than those who arrive on the easy route.


So true. Thanks for saying what needs to be said.


Thank you. I have three boys with ADHD, and they are all different with it. One of them is also Asperger's. Even with the others having their own difficulties you would think they might be a wee more sympathetic to the one who is extra "special." You would be wrong. Ah well. Life is never boring, right? :) Now if I could just get extended family and people around us to grasp it a little better.

just me

you are a MASTER painter,
ALL of your children are beautiful masterpieces!
Some paintings work best in different places.
On different colored walls, hung at different heights, bathed in various degrees of light.
All different, all beautiful.

At the end of the day when you're overwhelmed, you have canvases and paints all over, are covered head to toe in splatters, dont forget to give yourself a little credit. You deserve a lot even if you'll never acknowledge it. You are a hero to so many people. Don't give up or give in.


Ben there, done that, got the paint-spattered t-shirt to prove it. Actually in our house, it would be the spit-stained t-shirt, and car, and bathroom, and couch, etc. DS22 was finally diagnosed at age 12, after many years of rages, running away, trying to jump out of the car. His primary diagnosis is Bipolar with ADHD, OCD, Generalized Anxiety, and Autistic syndrome thrown in for laughs! I am blessed to be able to stay home so I handle all the doctor appointments, teacher meetings, etc. DH is home most nights, so we would split the childcare; one with "our special child" the other with the younger son and older daughter. We took 2 cars to outings. If it was my family, DH left with our son, while I stayed with the other kids; and vice versa. It's what held our family together; well that, and meds (lots of meds!) He's now stable on a regimen of 2 meds; regular sleep schedule; fitness routine; and only 2 community college courses.

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About Me

  • Carmen Staicer is a whirlwind of energy and execution who rarely sleeps and loves coffee and happens to have six outstanding awesome, incredibly loud and opinionated kids who are always right no matter what. Her passions include Zumba, hiking, photography, homeless ministry, reading, cooking, and spending time at the beach as often as possible. She's a college student studying to be a social worker who works as a Barista. State of mind? Tired, y'all.