Take a moment and think back over the last few weeks. How often did you get frustrated with someone in your life who has ADHD/ADD, Asperger’s, Dyslexia, Dysgraphia, and so on? Do you realize that even if you do not openly display this frustration you still convey your frustrations in tone and body language? Well, you do. The person you are frustrated with knows that they are the cause. Many times the reason for the frustration is not their fault. Here’s why you are frustrated…
People become frustrated when they have an unmet expectation. We get ideas into our head of what we expect to happen, some of these are realistic and some are not realistic. It is an unrealistic expectation to take a very ADHD child to a wedding and expect them to sit quietly during the ceremony. So, when you are frustrated you need to first think about what was your expectation. What are you frustrated about and what did you expect to happen? You need to ask, was your expectation realistic or unrealistic. Now come on, be honest with this one because most of the time it is an unrealistic expectation. Even if all you expect is to be able to buy chocolate milk at a restaurant and all they have is white milk; it is unrealistic to expect your desires to be met all the time.
So what do you do? You change your expectations. This doesn’t mean to lower your expectations but instead reframe them. If you expect your expectations to not always be met, it will not be so frustrating. If you fully understand the uniqueness of the other people in your life (their disability, time orientation, & perspectives) you will be much more successful. Everyone wants to be accepted for who they are and when you are frustrated with them you are not accepting them; you are expecting them to be something they are not.
The other thing you need to do is remember the Serenity Prayer!! Here’s a copy for you to keep!