No more playdates | ADHD Information


longsally, there is nothing wrong with you. You're just frustrated, it seems so esy to us. We've all thought, why can't I just have a "normal family". Well you do. Your family is normal. Yes your son is difficult. I know you've been dealing with this same thing for a long time.

 I have to agree with Sam E, he just cant be "talked out  of" or "disciplined out of" most of these behaviors. The idea of some kind of support group is good. I think I've suggested this before, but can you look around for a formal social skills program. These are generally geared for children that lack poor social skills due to high functioning autism, Aspergers, ADHD, non verbal learning disorder. There are several near me, some run weekly, some do 5 week Saturday sessions and most run summer camps.  The whole tiome is spent on HOW to play and interact socially with the other kids and the counselors.

Probably needs a med change or increase.  I would speak to his psych about meds.


first of all, ((((((hugs)))))))) to you. 

it was gradual, but here's what helped:

positive reinforcement (kinda like the marble system) at school ~ "points" for good behavior

community based learning - DS9 got to go on a "field trip" with a few other students, and could bring a friend along as long as he attained his goal points in the positive reinforcement program;  the friends would encourage him to attain his goals so that they could go as his guest!

weekly counseling sessions (15 minutes max) with the school's behavior support specialist

also, sometime last year when he was 8 yrs old, he came home and started to cry as he explained that one of his friends didn't want to be his friend anymore.  i consoled him and gave him a strategy (i.e., don't force the friend to comply - just continue being pleasant and the friend will come to you;  it worked).  i gave him examples of when someone didn't want to be my friend and what i did and what happened.  mostly, i asked how it felt to be rejected/abandoned, and whether he learned something (more tears when he answered me).

so bottom line is that in time, they'll start to realize the consequences of what happens when you're not a nice friend:  abandonment.

background:  DS9 is not on any meds but has gone to a neuropsychologist that uses neurofeedback therapy.


i also want to add that up to age 6 or so, i noticed that DS9 got along better with younger children and girls (i only have boys in my family).  i believe it had something to do with his maturity level.

one summer, he was in a special ed group (his regular school is integrated/mainstreamed with non SPED kids).  he took an LD student under his wing and helped tutor the boy (DS was 6 back then) with reading.  it was very touching.

a girl in his class also became good friends with him.  i befriended the girl's grandma, and told her about DS9's ADHD.  the grandma is a retired school teacher.  i told her how great it was to have megan as DS9's friend.  i would reinforce it by always inviting megan to his birthdays, and also having DS give her small gifts and things.  this taught him how to express his care for other people/students/children.  his compassion for others grew quite a bit during this time.

i think it helps to try to look for patterns in his social preferences, like with whom he feels most comfortable.

the CHADD group sounds like a GREAT idea! I would also have a meeting with the school's guidance counselor. Thats a good idea. Hard to get school to comply with token systems, especially for behavior, but worth a shot. It's still worth meetig with her/him. My daughter didnt have behavior sisues, but BOY has social delays and in elementary school she would go to lunch once a week with the guidance counselor and be allowed to invite a friend. All those little things helped her tremendously. The phone's not ringing off the hook for her socially, but she has a nice group of friends at school and they've been tried and true for a few years now, she goes to school dances and functions and has friends at lunch, and a couple fo friends to do things with after school and weekends. Every thing you do will fall into place eventually. Don't give up. He really can't help it, but I DO know how frustrating it is....................

btw, my younger daughter (5) has a friend who is like your son, makes her Mom CRAZY. There are definitely kids who wont play with her, my daughter is getting a little tired of her although she's still too young, but she has a lot of other friends. She will never be friends with the kids that dont like that, but there'll always be kids that dont mind either.

My son was in a social skills group.  He went for 3 months and then insurance stated that his adhd was a mental health thing and he had maxed out on his benefits and so he could not go anymore. He is medicated on Foculin xr10mg twice a day and tenex 1/2 a tablet twice a day as well.  We have discussed what is appropriate and inappropriate behavior but with little success or change in his behavior. There is a Chadd group here in Greenville and I have looked into it.  I was hpoing to meet some people there whose children have the same issues.

In the mean time, my friend whose child was here today is worried.  We are supposedto vacation with them over spring break and I am afraid they will back out due to the way her son interacts our son, It is not good.

All of these suggestions are great!  I also wanted to mention that maybe he doesn't do well with unstructured play. Maybe you need to sit them down to a board game or give them a 'mission' when they play. You know, lead him in a direction of good, cooperative play. For some kids, this just may not come natural and maybe your son is having to really work at it. Obviously he is struggling, no child wants and desires to be friendless. Maybe he just needs some direction in WHAT he's playing. When you see a situation arising just pull him aside and lead him (like you were). Eventually it will smooth out. When our ds was having trouble sitting during library time, we played out scenarios for more than two weeks and it soon showed improvement. Either dh or I (or DS) played a part. Someone was the librarian, someone was the 'good' student and someone was the 'non listening' student. It was fun but there was a message. When ds was the 'listening' student (no matter the distraction dh or I gave him) he received some award or treat of some sort.  It was just a fun way to say "okay, here's a better way of doing things. Your way is not working"  Might sound silly, but it worked for us.  All children want to have friends and they need them. good luck! Sounds like some great tools. As mentioned above, maybe some practice playdates where you are the "guest".

I got on the internet last night and pulled down info on making successful play dates with adhd kids.  There were  some main rules

1. The guest always goes first, 2. never criticise or complain about our friends in front of them, 3. dont be argumentative, 4. be a good listener and dont interrupt, 5. share toys, 6. no yelling, 7. always thank our frined when they come and leave for playing.

I showed the list to my son and we covered them all along with examples of his behavior as what NOT to do.  We will have our first play date tomorrow and I told my son to adhere to these rules and if he needs help, come ask me.  I am hopeful.



You are doing a good job, I'm sure he will too. Everyone wants to be successful in these situations, so it looks like there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Just need some direction/guidance to get there.  Hope it goes well! Let us know~I hear you longsally my child has very few playdates herself.  My girl is the opposite however very friendly wanting to please but acts childish for her age, sometimes she does okay.  The thing with her is she is vindictive and does not know when to stop for example someone got in her face to tell her to shut up so she did it back and would not stop.  My girl does like to dictate but when someone says no she agrees she is more the follower than a leader.  She would probably do well with your son.

  I am glad your son had one good playdate. 
we got a call from a little girl in his class asking us to meet them at chick - fil - a for lunch and play.  We went and I reminded my son of the rules.  Not  long after we got there, this girl had a friend from sunday school come and she wanted to play with her,  I sat, waiting for the bottom to fall out. Instead, Paul played with both of them and then broke off and played with a boy there in the play area and when the other child left, the little girl came back to my son.  I could not have been prouder.  I keep having to remind myself that this was one play date for only 1 1/2 hours and not to get too excited!!!!!  It is a start though.Probably none of them I too have to tell dh to just STOP yelling and shut up. He gets mad, but he gets over it ( especially if he wants dinner or clean clothes)the kids arrived for a playdate ans sleep over tonight.  There are 3 boys total including mine. From 630pm until 7pm it was pizza.  From 7pm until 830 it was a movie ( night at the museum).  Then they sat in the tent we put up in the living room and told scary stories.  Here is the rub:  I went to put the youngest to bed and left hubby downstairs to monitor the kids.  All I heard was his yelling at our son " Paul, Paul Paul." " Im counting one, two...."  I came down and found the reason he was being so hard on my son was because he was drinking  a tea drink and hubby thought he was drinking too much and might have an accident.  I told my hubby 1# dont yell at him in front of his guests, #2, there is plenty of time to cut off drinks before bedtime, stop yelling at him.  Hubby got mad and left.  I am wondering how many of my sons problems are my fault.


We used the rec. center for programs and YMCA outside our town. It gave us the chance to meet other kids and to see if it was mine who had the problem or the other kids.

We went on a cruise this past Sept/Oct. and my son came home with more phone numbers and new friends that he hung out during the trip. He hated leaving and wished he lived near them.

sometimes I don't think it is always our adhd'ers. We are just always put on the defensive and being blamed.

Then the labeling begins.

What does the teacher plan on doing for your son during school time to help hime make friends? The teacher should help your son with socialization. There are things that she can do, besides just tell you your son has no friends. That is sad.

Our school has social classes during lunch with an "adjustment counselor", especially for the girls with their whole "queen bee" thing always going on.

I would call your school and ask about it!!

BETHANN39452.5107175926a friend of mine called last night and needed me to get her kids for her.  I told my son we were going to use it as a trial run. The two talked, played a game called sorry.  My son came to me complaining because he had jumped the boy and the child would not remove his piece from the board.  No screaming though and he did come to me for help.  Turns out the other kid had never played Trouble before and after I explained the game, the two of them played very nicely together. My son even let him go first!!!  It only lasted an hour but it was a start.

well, I let my ds have a playdate and as usual, he was domineering, yelling at the child, ordering him around.  5 minutes after the child got here, he was complaining about him TO HIS FACE!!!  I immediately took my ds aside and explained that it was exactly that behavior that got him in trouble with other children. He stated he understood and he would be better and not 5 minutes later, he was doing it again.  I gave him hot sauce 2 times for his complaining and in the end, I have decided that there will be no more playdates during the week at all.

From now on, he may play on the weekends only and only with one child at a time and only in environments where he can run like the park or the rock wall climbing place down the road. I was so embarassed by his behavior today I cannot tell you.  It affects my friendships with other adults as they dont want their child playing with 'that kid".  Nothing we say or do has any impact on his behavior with other children. 

He asked if he could play with his friend cameron and when my husband approached his mother about a playdate, she flat out said that her son didnt want to play with our child because he didnt like being bossed around.  I think my son will be very lonely as he is slowly alienating every child he comes into contact with.  I didnt want to hurt my sons feelings but I explained to him that he would not be playing with cameron anymore and why, thinking that as a 7 1/2 year old, he would begin to internalize what I was saying.  It made no impact on him at all. It was even pointed out to him that the other children in the neighborhood he played with last year no longer come to play because they didnt like how they were treated.

I feel like a total failure when it comes to him. I have one child who is a social butterfly, that everyone loves to be around, that has no stress on the home and one that is abrasive from the moment he wakes up until he goes to sleep.  I have actually considered sending him away to a military school, somewhere with a lot of structure so that I can have a normal life and he can get all the structure he needs.  Then I kick myself for even thinking such thoughts!!!!!  What is wrong with me?

What's wrong w/you?  You're a stressed out mom with an ADHD child, that's what is wrong.  I don't think you're feelings are abnormal or out of line.  As much as I love my child, I think "why me, why our family, why can't he be normal" but it's nothing we can change, all we can do is our best to help them.  I think playdates are a great idea and a good way to engage your child in what is appropriate or not appropriate.  Is your child on any meds?  Or receiving any therapy?  We're still in the beginning stages of our journey, so I don't have much to offer, I just know how you're feeling.  We want so badly for our children to be accepted and have friends, it's hard to watch them alienate themselves & not even realize it or comprehend what that means.  Sorry for your frustrating day, hope things get better!

In all reality NOTHING is wrong with you.  I am in a very simular situation with my 8 year old.  He has no friends at all for the same reasons.  I have been told by the teacher that he literally has no friends at school.  My 3 year old has more of a life than his brother.  What I am doing in my town right now is looking for support groups in my area with parents who have the same problem.  Is that maybe an option you can look into also?

I am also going to put him in some kind of Therapy where he can maybe talk to someone.  I dont want his lack of friends, and a social life to cause him to look at substance abuse, or anything to that nature.

Is your child on any types of diets, or meds, or anything?

Would love to know how this all turns out!  Good Luck

longsally wrote:
 I feel like a total failure when it comes to him. I have one child who is a social butterfly, that everyone loves to be around, that has no stress on the home and one that is abrasive from the moment he wakes up until he goes to sleep.  I have actually considered sending him away to a military school, somewhere with a lot of structure so that I can have a normal life and he can get all the structure he needs. 

What type of interventions have you sought out to help your child manage his adhd symptoms? Because your child doesnt chose to behave like that because he acts on impulse,(acting before thinking) more discipline wont correct what he cant control. Does your other child have adhd? With the right treatment and interventions for adhd, there could be real quality of life for the entire family unit. In absence of the proper treatment for adhd, the child is not focused  and doesnt pick up on social cues well. Unfortunately a child with adhd cant be talked out of such behaviors

My son has taken two social skills classes. One went for 8 weeks and the other for 6. One had a very pragmatic approach, and that worked best. It was very direct, stating the obvious. And I mean really obvious (for example the therapist would say, "I am talking to you, and you are bouncing in your seat and playing with your pencil and not looking at me. It makes me feel that you don't care about what I am saying, or about me. Is that how you want me to feel?").  The classes also included a lot of homework for the parents, like discussing how to behave during a playdate, setting one up, observing the entire time, and then rewarding the desired behaviors.

I found that the social skills books directed at children with autism are really pragmatic in their approach. You might want to look into them. I did a quick search and found this, and I'm sure there are many others.

Your son is probably just socially immature. I would try some books like these. I was surprised at some of the incredibly obvious things that my son was not contemplating in social situations. When he changed his way of thinking, it was like a lightbulb went on. You could also observe his interaction during a playdate and later narrate exactly what happened, and then describe the things that he could have done instead.

I have come to the conclusion that she was using the kids as a way to break off the friendship.  There is obviously something here at play that is not obvious and it would not be the first time someone blamed my child.  Ok, he has adhd, ok, he has issues.  But to say that you dont want the kids playing together because your son is now wanting to go first and wants to be red ( my sons favorite color) is a cop out.

I called a good friend of mine and told her what happenned.  She stated that last year, her son didnt want to be on the same football team as my son because of his adhd problems.  She told me that she sat her son down, got him to admit that he likes my son, that my son lets him borrow any toy he wants and is good to him so therefor, he should be his friend and try to smooth the way for him.  She stated, I am the adult, he is the child and what this woman said is a cop out!!!!  After the morning with time to think about it, I have to agree on some level.  I really feel bad for my son though and do not know what to tell him.  What do I say when he asks to play with him?  What do I tell him when he asks why they are not on vacation with us in March?

I am writing this note with a very heavy heart.  The mother of the child that had a good time at the sleep over came to see me this am. She stated to me that she feels my son is a bad influence on her child.  He had a melt down yesterday afternoon and she stated that this is connected to the sleepover.  She told me she doesnt want them playing together anymore.  She stated her child has issues of his own and that he is picking up bad habits from my son because her child cannot tell the difference between what is acceptable behavior and what is not.

We had plans to all go together during spring break on vacation.  The reservations have been made and she informed me that they are backing out although giving us the money.

Once again, a friendship lost over the children.  I told hubby that we need to make friends with people who do not have kids so that the children can no longer affect who we hang out with, These people are ones that we see every weekend, do things with, eat dinner with.  They are basically cutting us out of their lives for the sake of "their child".  I would be a liar if I didnt say I was very hurt.

Maybe the parents need social skills classes.

I thought is was the rule of sleepovers that when your child has a sleepover they are a BEAR the next day (due to lack of sleep).  My non-adhd child is terrible the day after a sleepover, which is why we limit sleepovers.  When a parent asks me if my child will sleep over, I usually say it doesn't work out well for my child, because he needs sleep.  Many times the parent will assure me that they will have the children with lights out at 10 or so, so this doesn't happen, and many times I agree.

The fact that parents would break off a friendship over a childs relationship just tells me they were never your friends.  You need to find people who are friends regardless of if the children are.   I have a difficult son and have always been honest that I struggle with my child, I welcome others advise, and I intervene if I see my child being rude/disrespectful.  It happens, of course, but I always apologize to the other parent and let them know I'm trying.  Its these other parents with the problem.




What a trial this has been for you. I'm sorry.

I would like to maybe give this mother some time and then re-approach her with some suggestions/plans of action for when certain situations arise. The deal that I caught with it is that you both have challenging children. I have a similar friendship.  We have to choose very carefully where/what/how long and all of that. It makes for a more complicated approach to just socializing but here's the deal- (IMO) When you have children, your life becomes about teaching them and raising them. Time spent with friends does typically go around them also having children, so that the 'get together' is spent well. But you guys could take some time out of getting the kids together and just have a few couples night out w/o children.

It's difficult, I know. My first son's (our ADHDer) biological father wrote us off and my dh adopted him and loves him very much, but there are the times that I struggle with the 'abondonment' issue. You feel like your child has been rejected and that is VERY personal.  The struggles of raising a child (especially ADD/ADHD) is tough, but this just knocks it up a notch. Just hang in there, I truly feel it will smooth over with time.

If I only had playdates here with kids who reciprocated, we'd hardly ever have playdates! I'd love it if my kids were invited over kids houses HALF the time I have kids here, but my goal is to what I think is good for my kdis, so I have the playdates here. It's a lot of work and frustrating when they dont get invited elsewhere, but there's worse things. At least kids are coming over and my kids have kids to play with. Dont worry about what everyone else does, just do your what if they have their own playdates, just invite over the child your son DOES get along with an leave it at that. If the non reciproacting really bothers you, then keep trying other friends, but you cant put your expectations on other parents. People do what's easiest, the path of least resistanc, it's human nature. Try to leave the parent issues out of it if you can. You're making progress, run with it.

I agree on the trying to avoid 3 children at a time, 2 is best, but if you have to have more, go for four. This gets better as they get older. My 13 yer old's friends do fine with three now, but not in the younger years..................

The book looks good Notellin thanks.  As for the playdate thing I do like it at my house for the fact of being able to intervene when needed.  My child does have a friend with the same diagnosis and they are two peas in a pod we usually meet out somewhere or it is here, they have 2 dogs and a cat.  My child is very allergic to animal fur and dander and besides the bad reaction her Asthma kicks up along with the symptoms. you know, that is what I told hubby. We will call and set up for play dates on the weekends. We will offer 1-2 sleepovers a month to friends, only one at a time.  If someone recipricates, ok. If not, oh well.  It is not about us and our adult friendships, it is about the kids.  Son attempted to set up date with another friend from class today and they could not meet. While we were at playdate yesterday, however, a friend of my sons from kindergarten came in and said hello to him.  I suggested he call him for an afternoon playdate.  No reason not to keep in touch, cause they are not in the same class anymore.In my experience, three kids playing together often doesn't work out well. It seems like two inevitably link up and leave one out. Four is OK, but I wouldn't have that many kids for a sleepover unless it were a party or special occasion. If it were me, I would just invite the one boy, who was nicer, back. It would be nice if his family would reciprocate, but if not, oh well, at least your son is having a good experience with a friend, and at least you know where they are and what they're doing!  What I do before setting up a play date is get to know the parent and after awhile of feeling them out I will sometimes reveal what my girl is going through the sympathy factor so they understand where I am coming from and what I am trying to do.  This does work for me but I only do it if I see a bonding between the kids and I get to know the parent.  My girl is also better for others than me from what I have heard.


Gee longsally,

your son sure is making up for lost time with these playdates and sleep overs.

He sounds like he is doing just fine.

But I would still wonder if it isn't your son but the other kids from the

neighborhood that have the issues, just my opinion!

well, this is how it went this am. the kids were up at 645am.  the two guests complained that they were trying to sleep and my son was keeping them awake.  I removed my son from the tent, only to hear the other boys talking and playing.  I told my son he could go back.  Upon his return, one of the boys told my son he didnt like him and didnt want to play with him. I then intervened and told that child that he was invited, had a good time, ate chips and candy, watched a movie and his attitude was not appreciated. ( in child terms)

The boys got up, ate chocolate waffles with syrup, had showers and were playing.  The other guest told me he had a good time and wanted to come back.  The original guest who made the nasty statement said he did not want to come back without really telling me why.  I told him, that was fine, then I looked at the other child and told him we would have him back, no problem.

the final rub: the mothers of these two boys are friends (introduced by me)as well and when I told the one boys mother what her son had said about wanting to come back but that he would need to recipricate, her response was that she could not do all three at once. I said " noone is telling you to do all 3 at once." I have the feeling that she prefers the other child to play with her son and mine will be on the outs.  The other 2 have regular play dates and due to my night shift work, my son cannot have play dates during the week.  It very well may be that my son can only have sleep overs with one child at a time and then will never get an invite.

I would just tell your son this family can't make it - no explanations needed.

One idea to help your son may be to spend more time playing games with him yourself or with you and your family.  Each night play one or two games, and give him positive feedback while playing about his behavior.  If he does something like lie or cheat, tell him that is not the way we play games.  If he gets upset, end the game immediately.  That may help him learn how to play properly.  

I also would not give an explanation. If he pushes you just say you are not sure why, but they cannot make it.

I picked up the kids from school today and the first thing the boy asked me was if he could play with my son.  I had to say no and used the excuse that I am working 3rd shift and therefor must rest, no children in the house.  He then asked about the weekend so I told him that it was ok with me but he needed to talk to his mommy about it.  I decided to put it on her and not have this child think I am not allowing him to come over. 

To top it off, this child let it slip in my car in front of my son that he and his family ate dinner down the street from us at the other childs home ( the 3rd child from sleep over).  My son immediately asked why he was not invited!!!!!  I again had to step in and lie, stating that it had to do with my 3rd shift work and he needed to stay with his father.  Apparently, my "best friend" down the street ( who has not returned my calls in 2 weeks) has decided to hang out all the time with my now ex-friend and I guess their kids play now and mine are out.  I am very angry and frustrated!!!

You know they still may show up at the b d party. Wait and see.

My son was unmedicated in kindergarten and quite a handful, even though the teacher never complained to me. He was diagnosed but we never said anything and had an IEP.

I invited the class and they all showed up.

His social life really tanked in first grade, then we started meds and it has gotten, at least as good as it is going to get in a small town.

What I have done is  pretend to call the other party and "leave a message" sorry honey they did not call back.  I also tell her not today and come up with reasons.

 We have a friend now that is the opposite we are avoiding them for her child is a brat and will make my daughter do things I do not want her to do, this girl is used to getting what she wants if she badgers for it when i say No it means No.  She would be nice to my girl then say things afterwards  hurtful and it goes over my childs head the mother is very needy and odd also.  The mother does not drive so I feel like a chauffer another reason for us being busy all the time. One of my friends told me that when her son asks to play, I should say, its ok with me but ask your mom and put it off on her!!!!!Reading your message was like looking in a mirror of myself and my family. I feel that the isolation my son experiences as a result of his need to be in control is one of the hardest things to deal with. In the majority of situations he just does not fit in. I am reading your replies with interest. As mums we did not cause, create or invent ADHD but we must live with something every day that most people do not understand. Take comfort from the many people responding to you and know you are not alone!!!!I think when it comes time to go on vacation, I will tell my son that "something came up with their family" and leave it at that.  Another friend of mine, upon hearing what happenned, stated that her family would like to come with us on vacation.  Her son and mine play and she stated that all kids have issues and she thinks what this woman did was ridiculous.  I have to agree now that I have had time to think about it.

I understand.  Wow, do I understand.  I know how guilty you feel, and the failure you feel too.  We have to remind ourselves that as much as its our job to raise our special kids, and have patience we are still only human.  My DS is in K and I thought this would be the year of a good Bday party.  He was doing very well, for a while, and recently it seems to be all coming apart.  His Bday is in 2 1/2 weeks, and I just don't think anyone will come. 

Hang in there.  You are a good parent, and you need to be as kind to yourself as you are to him.