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When I Realized What I Say Isn't Always What my Son with ADHD Hears

It's one of those days. A day seemingly like any other, where I wake and go through my normal routine of breakfast, packing lunches, yelling about getting socks on and to stop sitting on each other's heads -- a day where everything seems "normal" until it's not.

My son asked me to come watch a video with him. He's been talking about these videos all weekend and asking me to watch. I haven't been paying attention but have managed to successfully nod and murmur at appropriate times while saying, "Not right now." I had just said no again, was putting the dog in his kennel and thinking about my to-do list. I looked up to see him standing there. His hands were twisting around one another, his shoulders slumped. He looked at me, frowning. I didn't understand what was happening and was about to give him grief for not getting his bag together and standing there with no socks on but there was something about the way he looked that stopped me.

"What's wrong?" I asked.

"You just said you don't care," he says to me. My first response was to say quickly, "Oh no I didn't," and move on. Because I truly didn't. My stomach clenched because I felt something coming, and I was nervous.

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