The 5C’s of ADHD parenting: Connect more, argue less | Sharon Saline, Psy.D. | 7 Min Read

It’s 9 p.m. and your 13-year-old daughter with ADHD is rushing around the house frantically looking for her social studies book. She’s just realized that she has to read a chapter and answer five questions to prepare for the quiz tomorrow. You calmly offer to help her find the book and review the material but, instead of graciously accepting your assistance, she screams at you “Why can’t you leave me alone? I don’t need you!” You snap back, “Well actually you do or you’d know where your book is and you’d have finished your homework by now!” Then you both stomp off to your respective bedrooms, wondering why things devolved so quickly into a yelling match.

Irrational upsets, misunderstandings and poor cooperation can leave everybody in a family feeling disconnected, unhappy and disempowered. When you offer choices and negotiate collaborative solutions, your frustration decreases and your child’s sense of competence increases. I call this approach the 5C’s of neurodiverse parenting: self-Control, Compassion, Collaboration, Consistency and Celebration. My 5C’s offers families living with neurodiverse children and teens (those kids with ADHD, learning disabilities, twice exceptionality, level one autism, anxiety and more) a roadmap for reducing stress and improving day-to-day living.…

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Sharon Saline, Psy.D.

Sharon Saline, Psy.D. is a top expert in ADHD and neurodiversity. Dr. Saline specializes in an integrative approach to managing ADHD, anxiety, executive functioning skills, learning differences and mental health issues in neurodiverse and 2e children, teens, college-age adults and families. With over 25 years of clinical experience, she brings a positive, strength-based approach to improving the challenges related to attention, learning and behavior. As a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice in Northampton, MA, Dr. Saline helps people reduce frustration, develop daily living skills, communicate better and feel closer. An internationally sought-after lecturer, workshop facilitator, and educator/clinician trainer, she adeptly addresses topics ranging from making sense of ADHD and executive functioning skills to managing anxiety to understanding the teen brain. You may contact Dr. Sharon Saline at