Mad Random Parenting by Donna Miller

I'm a parent just like you and I can help you find your voice.

The Mission

If you parent a child like mine – quirky, difficult, full of energy and challenging behavior – you already belong to the community of parents doing the hardest job on the planet: raising a child with emotional disabilities.

So, we may already know a lot about each other. Here’s something else about me: I began this revolution by writing the book Mad Random: Claiming Life Out of Chaos. I know about the child who is wired for sound and motion but can’t master the dance of school, civil behavior or a happy social life. I know because I raised that child. I was guilty, exhausted and without hope. I was sure no one understood what went on in my home and there wasn’t anyone who had a clue how to help us. One day I decided I’d had ENOUGH.

I shared our story for you and your family, with a full appreciation and respect for the job you do every day. But more importantly, this memoir was the first step in discovering my passion to help you power through the despair of chaotic kids and broken families.

You are not alone and I can help. No, I am not a therapist. I am parent, just like you. I’ve spent years sorting out the practical tools, new resources and the ever-changing opportunities to advocate for our kids.

I will be sharing everything I’ve learned and that I keep learning. We will do this together. I promise this will always be a place of understanding, guidance, humor and community.

Trusted Resources

Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center
etcacenter.org

Center for Parent Information
parentcenterhub.org

Parents Magazine
parents.com

National Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (NECTAC)
fpg.unc.edu

The National Resource on ADHD
chaad.org

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
ninds.nih.gov

Do’s and Don’ts
when you suspect your child may be emotionally challenged

Five things TO DO if you suspect your child needs evaluation for an emotional disability

  1. Promise yourself you won’t panic and keep the promise.
  2. Call your family care doctor or pediatrician and carefully explain what you are seeing and hearing.
  3. Insist on being heard. Share your fears with people you love and trust, especially your co-parent.
  4. Keep things low-key and calm. You are fact gathering and you need space.
  5. Write everything down. You’ll need a record.

Five things NOT TO DO. These really count, so read them twice.

  1. Don’t talk to anyone who will put you down for worrying.
  2. Don’t search the web for every symptom you have noticed. This information may be wrong and it will make you crazy.
  3. Don’t involve the teachers, coaches or other parents until you know what you want from the community.
  4. Don’t default to denial when you know something isn’t right. Listen to your instincts. When it comes to your child you are the expert.
  5. Don’t project the future. You are at the beginning of a journey that takes courage and can bring joy.