An ADD Woman with Lacy Estelle

ADHD and Dealing with Disappointment

February 26, 2024 Lacy Estelle Season 2 Episode 21
An ADD Woman with Lacy Estelle
ADHD and Dealing with Disappointment
An ADD Woman with Lacy Estelle: Growth
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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Curious about how to deal with disappointment when living with ADHD? In this episode of ADD Woman podcast, host Lacy Estelle shares her personal experiences and insights into navigating disappointment while living with ADHD and raising children with ADHD.

She talks about the different ways her children handle disappointment, sheds light on the emotional pain of disappointment, and emphasizes the importance of embracing, learning, and growing from it.

Through her candid conversation, Lacy provides a Christian woman's perspective on coping with disappointment and invites listeners to align their perspectives for healthier relationships and personal growth.

Reach out to Lacy Estelle via:
Email: podcast@anaddwoman.com
Facebook group: @anADDwoman
Instagram: @anADDwoman
Website: www.anaddwoman.com
Lacy’s Facebook group:
Mothering the Storm Accountability and Support Group

Support the show


Introduction


[0:00] Hey guys, and welcome back to an ADD woman podcast, me Lacy Estelle.
Today, I'm going to be talking to you guys all about dealing with disappointment when you have ADHD.
And this is really relevant to my life right now.
And I think that, you know, if I'm always talking from, you know, from the heart or from a personal perspective, it, well, then hopefully you guys can tell, you know, I'm not just saying these things off the cuff because I can't relate to them.
I definitely try to always talk to you guys about things that I'm personally experiencing in my life.
And most of the time, you guys do give me a lot of feedback and say, I get it. I relate to that as well. So I'm really excited to get into this.


Discussing ADHD and Disappointment


[0:49] Welcome to an ADD Woman podcast. I'm your host, Lacy Estelle.
This is the podcast where we talk about all things to do with ADHD from a Christian woman's perspective.
I'm so glad you're here, and I can't wait for you to realize all the amazing things that God is doing in your life.

[1:09] Okay so ADHD and dealing with disappointment now forgive me you guys I have ADHD so I kind of do not so great job of going through my old podcasts and checking a box to see like what I've already talked about what I discussed and so if I've discussed if I've talked in the past about having ADHD and struggling with disappointment I do apologize but hey it's relevant to me right now So why not revisit it if I have in the past?
I know in the past I have discussed things like rejection sensitivity dysphoria.
And while I think that rejection sensitivity dysphoria can definitely play a role in dealing with your disappointment, I'm not speaking directly to RSD.


Reflections on Past Episodes


[1:56] D. There is a couple episodes.
I say a couple, you guys. That's kind of like the Midwestern term also for saying the other day.
We say the other day here in the Midwest, and maybe you guys say it somewhere else too.
But here in the Midwest of the US, we say the other day, and we could be saying, we could be meaning like two days ago, or we could be meaning like three years ago.
So when I say that, you know, a couple episodes ago.

[2:25] Guys, you're probably going to have to go a ways back because I think it was probably more like, oh, 10 episodes ago, maybe.
I don't know. Again, like I said, I have ADHD.
Forgive me. I try to at least once or twice listen to my most recent episode shortly after it publishes just so I can keep in mind what I just talked about and keep it relevant.
But, yeah, I'm just not so good at it.
I'm getting better. I am getting better. I'm a work in progress.
Us, just like I'm always telling you guys. So dealing with disappointment.
So why do I feel that this is relevant? Why is this relevant to me right now? Well, goodness.
I think it has to do with learning to teach my kids something that I don't think I really learned.
And guys, just so you know, a lot of times my episodes, and I probably don't even need to explain this to you, but a lot of times my episodes, I like to kind of draft up an idea of what I'm going to talk about.


ADHD in the Household


[3:18] I have no draft here I'm just I just have a couple notes on a sheet of paper and I'm just going for it because I think that this is something I could probably talk about off the cuff so I'm going to um so in my household I have I have lots of ADHD there's me there's my stepdaughter there is my two older sons I'm pretty sure my husband has it but he copes really really well so he doesn't you You know, he doesn't need to address that portion of it.
He deals with other things. There's a lot of ADHD.

[3:52] All sides of the spectrum of ADHD lives in my house. Does it always thrive in my house? Jury's still up.


Parenting Perspectives


[4:01] Anyways, something I'm noticing in the dynamic between my two older sons.
Now, my one son is almost 15, okay?
And yes, I know. I'm too young to have a 15-year-old. Thank you.
Thank you so much. I completely agree with you. I am but all the same I still have one and my other son is 12 he will be 13 this year now there's a drastic difference between the two of them you have my 15 year old is I would say he's probably mildly gifted and now when you do you know when they did the psychiatric test for him, they wouldn't have he wouldn't have labeled him that but they basically said you know if he works really, really hard, he can achieve all of his goals, which basically means that, you know, yes, he has ADHD.
We can see that it hinders him, but it doesn't really hinder him enough for us to warrant, you know, interventions for him.
And so because of this, that son has been labeled as, you know, he's a procrastinator or he just doesn't care enough or he, you know, he can be lazy about things, but I see a different side of it because I relate very much to it. I was very much like him.

[5:15] It was good. Yeah. I was good at school when I liked it, when I liked the subject matter, because I love learning. I love to learn.

[5:25] So when I was in a class that I was enjoying the subject matter, it was great.

[5:30] But when I had to push myself out of my comfort zone to learn things that I didn't find relevant to my life at the time, or I just didn't, I didn't see the point, couldn't push myself to do that. And it wasn't because I didn't care.
And it definitely wasn't because I was lazy or because I was stupid.
It was just the way my brain was wired. My brain was like, I'm sorry, give me more.
I need more. I need more from this. This is not fun enough.
It's not cool enough for me to pay attention. Okay. Now, then you have my other son who is 12 going on 13.
She is likely dyslexic. Dyslexic testing is not something that insurance pays for these days.
So instead, or at least not in my state. So he has been doing vision therapy for the last two years.
I'm really praying and hoping that he will graduate from vision therapy this year.
And vision therapy does correct a lot of his dyslexic tendencies, but he will likely always struggle a little bit with some of those things.
But all that to say, he struggles to learn. He struggles immensely to learn.
Enough so that even if he had not had a diagnosis of ADHD, they had said that he qualified enough as far as his learning deficit that he would qualify for special intervention.
Intervention okay so i have these two different dynamics in my household i have one child who.

[6:58] If if he wants something bad enough he can just take to it and that's definitely that's definitely my oldest son he also is a child that like if he decides that something is interesting enough or engaging enough he just he just decides he's gonna look it up he's gonna youtube it or he'll google it and he can do it he has he just brought me something earlier today and said hey uh check check this out.
I'm part of a development of a video game. I'm like, what?
And he says, he's like, yeah, look, this is what, this is the coding that, okay, I got him interested in coding, but I didn't even hardly teach him much coding.
He wrote some portion of code, no matter he used chat GPT or something, but he wrote it.
He entered, they used it, the developers used it.
They gave him the developer label on his Discord. cord. So he's all excited about that.
He decided at one point he wanted to learn how to use a bullwhip.
Okay, I know, ADHD interest, right? But he wanted to learn how to use a bullwhip.
Asked me to order him a bullwhip with his birthday money. I did. And he can't.

[8:04] He does the thing, I don't even know what it's called. I know you're probably Googling to yourself, bullwhips.


Contrasting Children's Approaches


[8:10] But I'm just saying, when he decides he wants to try something, he just goes for it. And you have my other son, has to work really hard at everything.
For a long time, for a very long time, friends, I felt terrible guilt for my younger son.
Because he would ask me all the time, mom, what's my talent?
What's my talent? What's my talent? and it wasn't.

[8:34] That he didn't have one it was that he was looking for something to come as natural to him as things do his brother and he figured whatever that thing was that's his talent right like everybody gets a talent he probably has one somewhere right but everything is hard for him and when I say he's you know he's dyslexic and he's got learning disabilities and ADHD he is kind he's very sweet he's mostly calm he can extremely competitive at times but all these things these learning disabilities that he has dyslexia and all sorts of things they affect him in ways that you wouldn't really expect it makes him clumsy he trips over things he bumps into things he drops things way more often than any other child in our house why do i tell you all this because I'm realizing that both of my children because of the differences in the way God gifted them their talents or their skill sets they are learning to deal with disappointment drastically differently and I think it's really important to see that because hopefully my hope is that when you know you get through this episode you will probably relate to one or the other and you'll be able to see where your perspective needs to shift so that you can deal with this appointment better as.


Lessons from Children's Behaviors


[9:59] Well so my older son because things come so natural to him something he struggles with is to work hard and it's not to say that he's not capable of working hard at something he is totally capable but he has a very short patience when it comes to wanting that instant gratification.
So like he decides that something's interesting enough to him, he will Google it, he'll YouTube it, he'll learn it with, I don't know, a couple of hours.
And once he can apply it, then he's like, cool, got it. I don't need to learn anymore.

[10:32] But that's actually what helps us achieve the things that we want.
And he's starting to see them.
He's starting to realize he can only get so far on talent alone.
If he only uses talent, then he will never learn the value of working hard.
Now, where you have my other son, he's had to work for everything.
He's had to work to get to a point to where things come natural to him.
He's just finally now he's in sixth grade. And I'm so proud of him to tell you this because he started out fifth grade at a first grade reading level.
Barely. He was barely at a first grade reading level and he was stuck there for years until vision therapy.
But this year, finally, he just took his new placement test and he has finally reached a fifth grade reading level.
That was not without extremely hard work from him okay he had to do homework vision therapy homework that he did not want to do it's basically it's training his eyes to look for letters interpret letters the proper way that they're supposed to be interpreted getting his eyes to work properly with his ears with his you know bodily functions and i know that sounds kind of of crazy, but it also has to do with his balance and his equilibrium and all sorts of other things.
So he said work really, really hard for that.
But because of that, he has honed this skill that my older son lacks.

[11:57] And that skill is the ability to persevere even when things don't come natural, even when things don't come easy.


Coping with Disappointment Differently


[12:05] Now, what does this all have to do with disappointment? disappointment well my one son has learned that when things don't go the way that you want, you can be disappointed but you're not going to live there you're going to get back up and you're going to keep going forward and you're going to keep trying and you're going to embrace that feeling of disappointment so that you can harness and learn from it.

[12:32] My other son is learning that disappointment is so paralyzing that he doesn't want to risk it again. Can you guess which is which?
I'm not going to tell you because I think that you should be able to guess.


Response to Disappointment


[12:43] But I want you to ask yourself, when you are faced with disappointment, what is it that you jump to?
A lot of us, most of the ADHDers that I meet, especially us women, we are people pleasers by nature.
We get addicted to conflict maybe from early on because we're so used to having to defend ourselves and to explain to people why we forgot or why we messed this up or why we did this and a lot of us or at least in my experience a lot of times a lot of those traits they don't actually translate very well into good relationship traits end up kind of coming across as egotistical like like you lack empathy, when really the truth of the matter is disappointing somebody else that we care about or even disappointing ourselves hurts so much that we avoid it.
And we think to ourselves, I don't want to feel this way.
So I'm going to reason it out.
Whether we are reasoning it out with a person that we are feeling more disappointing or whether we are reasoning it out within ourselves, one way or another, we are stunting our own growth.


Recognizing Growth Stunting Behaviors


[13:48] I know i know maybe i'm what is that terrible saying beating a dead horse that sounds terrible.


Embracing Disappointment for Growth


[13:56] Stunting your own growth i know i talk about that a lot but i think that is part of it's not just part of our adhd walk but it's part of our christian walk jesus did not despise the cross because he saw what the cross would do now she also instructs us to take up our cross deny deny ourselves, and follow him.
And when we are really thinking about disappointment, now maybe it's you disappointed your boss, or you disappointed yourself, or you disappointed your friend.

[14:30] There are things when it comes to those things that you will have to sort of deal with separately because there's only so much you can control right now you disappoint the person that you're with you have you apologize you can't rationalize it now you might be able to rationalize i'm sure that you will tell yourself you know let's say, So, for instance, my husband is probably getting very frustrated with me, probably feeling very disappointed by me because I think he's reminded me four times in the last week to call our doctor's office about a specific medication that he has questions about.
He worries that it will be a lengthy phone call, which is why he's asking me to do it so he doesn't have to take time out of his work to sit on the phone with questions answered.
And he assumes that because I'm busy with the kids or I'm busy probably calling doctor's offices, which 10 times I am or six out of seven days I am, that it would just be something that I can just do and think to do while I'm doing other things.
But the truth of the matter is, I keep slipping my mind.

[15:36] Now, old me, something this simple.
You know, my husband has asked me, and every time I've said, I'm so sorry.
I'm so sorry. I forgot again. I will do it tomorrow.
I'll set a reminder i'll do this and then it has happened again now at some point if i continue to go down this path i continue to forget this important thing to him he's gonna have two choices or he's gonna he's gonna come to two conclusions one i don't care enough about him to remember something that's silly small and important to him which is not the truth i do care about him but let's just say that that day there's a day you know i forget to pack his lunch as well which yes I am one of those wives and you can berate me if you want to but I do I like packing my husband's lunch it's something that makes me hope that when he's at work he opens it and he thinks to himself my wife loves me a lot um so I do I pack him lunch and so maybe that day I forget to pack him lunch maybe we had an argument or something and then after all of that he says hey did you remember to call the doctor's office about my medication and no I forgot again I He is probably going to conclude from all of that, I don't care about him.
And also that I'm just kind of doomed to disappoint him or that, you know, clearly he can't count on me.
None of those things are true. Okay, but ADHD. PhD.

[17:02] Now, I could choose to react to his disappointment in me in one of two ways, and I will tell you exactly how I used to do it.
In any relationship that I had, when I was confronted with disappointing somebody else, I would defend myself.
Well, why would you put that on me? Why would you ask me to call the doctor's office when you are more than capable of doing it yourself?
You're an adult, and I can't believe that you'd ask that of me. And of course I forgot.
Do you not realize all of the things I have going on? Do you not not even think? Do you even look around?
So if you are listening to the words that I'm saying, you can hear that the guilt that I am feeling, I am doing everything to throw it back at him so that he feels guilty for even asking.
And I hope that by hearing me say those things, you are having an aha moment and you can go, oh my gosh, I do the same thing because you probably do.

[17:52] We don't like disappointing people, especially people that we love and care about because we feel like we've been disappointing them their whole lives and we fear because most of our irrational thoughts come from fear we fear that we are doomed to disappoint them forever that this will just be a continual cycle that they'll eventually wake up and go oh well gosh i just you're just a big disappointment i don't want to be with you anymore or you know or maybe we'll wake up ourselves and be so disappointed with our own selves that we'll get to the end of our life and we'll think we did nothing.
We did nothing worthwhile.
We did nothing good. We didn't, you know, we didn't live up to the expectation we had for ourselves, right?


Desire for Peace and Comfort


[18:34] We have a strong desire to fix things.

[18:38] We crave peace within our relationships and within our home. We also crave comfort.
Why do you think we sit on the couch instead of do the dishes?
Why do you think we'd rather say, yes, Netflix, I'm still watching that show after six hours instead of the myriad of things we have to do?
Because we like our bubble.
We like to feel, you know, comfortable with what we're doing.

[19:05] Disappointment is not what we think it is.
It's an emotional pain that's trying to teach us something.
So recently I saw a post and it was talking about how, I wish I could find it quickly, but I probably can't. So I'm not going to try.
But it was a woman talking about being a mother and how she was explaining that she's frustrated with the culture idea that we are supposed to meet every single one of our child's emotional needs.
We are not supposed to meet every single one of our child's emotional needs.
We're not supposed to meet every single one of our spouse's emotional needs or our friend's or even our own emotional needs. Jesus is supposed to fill that.
Now, in less words than what she said, that is a very small surmise to what she was getting at.
But my point is that we as ADHDers, because we are so prone to people pleasing and we we just want peace and we want comfort and we we don't want anybody to be unhappy with us we will shield ourselves from that in such a way that we can hurt our own relationships we can hurt our own self-esteem and we don't recognize that it's not our job it's not our job to fix everything it's not our job to get things perfectly and it's not our job to fill in the gap for our children in any way that they're lacking.


Parenting with Empathy


[20:29] Now, I told you about both of my kids in the paths that they're going down.

[20:35] And I try with my parenting to lead from a place of empathy.
I guess I tend to be like Elsa and I like natural consequences. So I let it go.

[20:46] I let a lot of things go because I would rather have very honest relationships with my children than relationships with them where they feel that they can't come to me because they're scared they're going to disappoint me.
I'm trying to cultivate a dynamic with them as well as with myself and with my spouse that disappointment doesn't have to mean the end of all things good.
It can just mean some emotional pain we have to force ourselves to look at it to literally put it under a microscope and think okay I disappointed myself or I disappointed somebody I care about or why did I do that how did it happen and how can I work to not do it anymore but also at the same time as I'm working to not disappoint the person or to disappoint myself again is my motive in doing so because I think that that's within the best interest of my family or for myself as far as what God wants for me or is my motive specifically just to please the other person so that I can have peace.

[21:58] Peace and comfort are not the goals even though we will reach them eventually if we continue to grow emotionally the way that we're supposed to.
We will. You will eventually have peace while you do the dishes.
It's amazing, and it sounds impossible probably. You will eventually have peace even amongst having a crazy chaotic household if that's the season that you're in of your life.

[22:27] You actually might get to a point to where when you have an empty nest and all of your kids have left the house, you have to relearn how to have peace amongst a super clean house and tidy and quiet.

[22:41] My point is, when you deal with disappointment in any way, shape, or form, you have to force yourself to look at it from the lens of, what if I am responsible?
What if this is my fault? And if it is, what can I do about it?
Nine times out of 10, what I have found is that when I don't shy away from the difficult feelings, the difficult feelings of disappointing somebody or the difficult feelings of disappointing pointing myself.
Trivially introspect and I go to God, pray.
I say, I need you to take this. I need you to do something with it.
I need you to help me see it for what it is.
I need to lay this at your feet because I can't cope with it anymore.

[23:25] He sheds new light on whatever it is that I would have never seen before.
I would have never seen it before. And it's amazing.
It really is. And And when you step back, you can say, I had no idea.
I had no idea how that one silly little mistake or that one silly little mishap would lead to emotional wealth.
Like I said right now, I'm in the passenger seat at this point with my children's lives.
I don't get to be the driver. I actually have to hope and pray that they are letting Jesus take the wheel, right? right?
But as their passenger, their guide on their journey and their navigator and trying to get them to the right destination, you know, as a parent, we all have it in our heads of what that destination needs to be, whether it's college or for my one son, it's military or, you know, I want him to land there.
God might have totally other plans. He might.

[24:24] And as I help them navigate this thing, my job is not to shield them from disappointment.
My son, my oldest son, he's absolutely in love with the game of basketball.


Coping with Son's Disappointment


[24:37] He loves it. And he got cut from his high school team this year. And he was devastated.

[24:44] As a mom, did I want to fix that? Did I want to meet that emotional need for him? Yeah, I did. Oh, yeah, I did.
I wanted to jump in there. I went a day.
I'm a Christian woman, but I wanted to cuss out that coach.
I wanted to beg, borrow, and steal to get him on that team because I would have done anything as a parent to take away his pain, that emotional pain that I can't do anything about.
But it's not my job to fix it. It's not my job to remove all of the disappointment in his life. Disappointment is going to come.
Embracing it, learning from it, putting it under a microscope and saying, what is this pain trying to teach me?
Teach me. Show me, Lord.
That's when God moves mountains. Now, that mountain for my son right now, he thinks it's basketball or girl that broke his heart or, you know, whatever. But it's not.

[25:44] It's not. And as an adult, I can see that. You can't. Can you imagine?
Can you imagine what God sees?
You know, if he's our father and he loves us and he can see all of the things that you are thinking to yourself like, oh, I just screwed it up this time.
And he can say, no, this is good. This is good. And I'm going to make it good.
I'm going to work it out for your good. we have no idea we really don't and thank goodness it's not on us right thank goodness thank you lord that we are not the ones that have to have the solution to everything we don't and we don't have to to be the ones that shield our children from pain or shield our spouse from pain or shield ourselves from pain and disappointment.
Instead, we can go to God and say, this is your territory, this is your arena, and I would just like to be used.
Use me. Send me. So I hope that you've taken from this a new perspective when it comes to dealing with disappointment.

[27:01] I'm always praying for you guys. So if you want, shoot me an email at lacey at laceyestelle.com and let me know how I can pray for you because I love to do that. I'll be talking to you guys really soon.
Thank you so much for listening. What would really help me more than anything if you feel inclined is please leave me a five-star review wherever you listen to podcasts, whether that's Spotify, Podbean, Apple Apple Podcasts, all the like.
It really helps for the show to show up for other people that maybe they need to hear it. Thanks again for being here. I appreciate you so much.

Introduction
Discussing ADHD and Disappointment
Reflections on Past Episodes
ADHD in the Household
Parenting Perspectives
Contrasting Children's Approaches
Lessons from Children's Behaviors
Coping with Disappointment Differently
Response to Disappointment
Recognizing Growth Stunting Behaviors
Embracing Disappointment for Growth
Desire for Peace and Comfort
Parenting with Empathy
Coping with Son's Disappointment