Parenting a boy with ADHD is tough.
I have learned that parenting a daughter with ADD has it's own challenges.
Boys with ADD usually have the "H" for hyperactivity and therefore stand out from the crowd. They are practically begging for special help.
Not so for the girls.
My daughter can sit down for longer periods of time than my Alpha Delta Delta son. Her teachers used to say she was continually distracted with whatever else was going on and not paying attention. She didn't jump around or make noises or climb under desks, so the teachers didn't think she had ADD like the "boys." She was just a "daydreamer," and if she'd just pay attention in class she'd do fine.
They were half right.
Her symptoms, like most other girls with ADD are more subtle, but just as difficult for her to cope with. I am reminded how difficult things are with her every time we watch tv together, which we do on friday nights. Everyone in the family takes turns picking the movie (PG13 or better) and we make popcorn, eat dessert, etc. Almost every 5 minutes she has a question about what we just watched. "What does "pooped" mean? Many times her questions are frustratingly simple and it's incredible to think she is serious. Often I think she just wants to be the focal point of conversation, but I am not inside her head. She could not get it, even when it's incredibly silly sounding. ("What does, 'going to the store altogether mean?'")
I can only imagine what the teachers at school are dealing with. She has special classes and tutors and her grades are great, but I know they are just giving her the grades so she can feel good about herself and flow through the system. She is getting help, and she likes school, so this is better than my son's experience.
All in all, we are happy. I just fear for when she graduates. The teachers have told me she won't be at the same level as the others. We all know she is different. We love her and we'll get buy just fine. Somehow she will find her place in the world. We all eventually do.
It's really all about quality of life.
I don't focus on grades as much as I did with my son. He was bright, read well, and often displayed high levels of thinking. My daughter loves hugs and her teachers call her "sweet." She won't be a doctor or scientist, but I'm sure she will find something to do to earn a living. I'm sure I'll be there when she needs me and so will her brothers and sister. She can have a good life as long as we don't compare her to everyone else and pressure her to do better than she is capable. I have no doubt she has more going on than ADD, and that's the problem with mental health today.
With ADD used to be a part of the "autism spectrum," and comorbidity confuses the issue, finding a consistent diagnosis is difficult. Every doctor has their own idea of what is going on with her depending on where they went to school and where and what they specialized in, and what tools they have to work with.
My job is to get my daughter the best chances for the best possible life she can have, and then get out of the way and let her live it. My job is not to control the outcomes. I can't. Trying to do so will not make her better and only frustrate us all.