A Mother’s Helper for Moms with ADHD

Mimi Handlin, MSW - ADHD Coach for Women
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What is a Mother’s Helper?
For Moms with ADD/ADHD who feel stressed, disorganized, or overwhelmingly scattered, a mother’s helper can be a blessing! They can do whatever is needed while you are also at home, which may be a combination of light household tasks, spending time with children, and errands. Mother’s helpers are usually younger than a babysitter or nanny, so they don’t require as much pay. I suppose it depends on the individual, but I would think a very mature 11 or 12 year old would be the absolute youngest. 

If your kids are older, the mother’s helper should also be a bit older and the responsibilities and compensation can be expanded. (Pay varies greatly depending on the geographic area.) Some duties could be transportation to and from after school activities, dinner prep, homework help, and light housework.

How to Feel About Hiring a Mother’s Helper
Feel smart, relieved, and resourceful. If some help can allow you to be more calm and effective, then go for it! You and your family deserve it.

How I used a Mother’s Helper
When my kids were pre-school and early to mid- grade school, I enlisted a 12 year old mother’s helper. When I needed to get something done (like paperwork), she would keep my kids occupied so I didn’t have get pulled in a million different directions and eventually just give up. What a relief! Some other things she did were:
1. Take the dog for a walk (and sometimes the kids too)
2. Fold the laundry
3. Empty the dishwasher
4. Take a child or two to the park
5. Help my oldest child do his math and spelling homework (It was more effective with her because she could actually sit down with him for 20 minutes in a row.)
6. Help a child clean his or her room. She actually enjoyed this!
7. Wash grapes and cut them up into little bunches
8. Play games with the kids when I was trying to cook dinner … etc. etc. etc.

Ways to Find a Mother’s Helper
1. Ask other moms if they know anyone or have a child who would be interested in the job.
2. Call the counseling office at the local middle, junior high, or high school and see if they know of anyone.
3. Put an ad up on a bulletin board at your local grocery store, coffee shop, or community center.
4. Inquire at your church, synagogue, or other place of worship
5. If you can afford to pay a little more, contact your closest community college and find out how to advertise a job.

Good luck!

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