028: Helicopter Parenting is Sure to Crash and Burn When Your Child has ADHD

Picture of hosted by Penny Williams

hosted by Penny Williams

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In this episode of the podcast, I'm tackling the misnomer of helicopter parenting. We think hovering over our kids is protecting them, and loving them, but it actually does more harm than good. By hovering over our kids and overprotecting them, we are robbing them of building lagging skills, successful future independence, and the joy of doing something on your own for the first time.

So, let's dive in and get your out of the pilot's seat.


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I'm Penny Williams.

I help stuck and struggling parents (educators, too) make the pivots necessary to unlock success and joy for neurodivergent kids and teens, themselves, and their families. I'm honored to be part of your journey!

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About the show...

I'm your host, Penny.

Join me as I help parents, caregivers, and educators like you harness the realization that we are all beautifully complex and marvelously imperfect. Each week I deliver insights and actionable strategies on parenting neurodivergent kids — those with ADHD, autism, anxiety, learning disabilities…

My approach to decoding behavior while honoring neurodiversity and parenting the individual child you have will provide you with the tools to help you understand and transform behavior, reduce your own stress, increase parenting confidence, and create the joyful family life you crave. I am honored to have helped thousands of families worldwide to help their kids feel good so they can do good.

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Share your thoughts.

  • This was a great podcast. Thank you. My mother has been calling me a helicopter mom since I became a mom. I did not like hearing how say so however she was correct. My son is now 6 yrs old. His diagnosis is ADHA/ODD. I made the mistake of being a helicopter mom and I am starting to give him more choices. He has an extremely strong willpower. This is a small step and one I can do. I feel in a short time he has significantly changed and I find myself lost many times. I am hoping because he is still young that I can help him be the best he can be and support him no matter what it takes…..

    • He’s still young so you have plenty of time to do it differently. I was still a major helicopter mom when my son was six. Good intentions, wrong approach. ????

  • My parents are helicopter parents. I'm gonna passive-aggressively force my parents to give me a tiny bit of independence by going on heaps of websites like this, so my parents know that just because I have ADHD doesn't mean that I don't know how to brush my teeth!

    • Hi Barold! I'm sorry you're struggling. I'd warn you against being passive aggressive about what you need. That usually makes parents more closed off, not less. Maybe you can leave articles up on their computer or printed on the kitchen counter? Try sitting down and having a heart-to-heart with them: “I'm getting to the age where, if you don't let me take on more independence, I won't have the skills I need to be totally independent later, when it's necessary.”

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