Family planning… Not the kind they have on the back wall at CVS

Our society has not caught up with the idea of two parent working families. In this country we don’t have enough time off, we don’t have enough vacation, we work too many hours, and we don’t value the family nearly enough, even though we say we do. And as you know from my previous writings, it’s not just you. It’s really hard to raise kids with issues. It’s also not so easy to manage a family and household if one or both of the adults have ADHD.

The single greatest piece of advice I can give you, which I give many of my clients, is to schedule regular family meetings. Life gets busy. We get caught up in the day-to-day. Next thing you know, we haven’t made any plans and things seem to always be an emergency. By the time we get the kids and make dinner and everyone to bed, it’s been a long day. Lather, rinse, repeat.

If we are not particularly intentional about making the time to communicate with each other, it can easily not happen. And even if we make the time to communicate with each other once, if we don’t do it regularly, a single planning meeting can only go so far. When our kids were really young and we were getting the hang of parenting, we used to get a pizza every Friday, put the kids in front of the tv, and go into my office to talk about the weekend through next week, through that weekend.

We do it more organically now. We send each other texts or emails during the work day with a varying level of urgency. But we do occasionally have enough to talk about that we put time aside specifically for planning and logistics. If you start to institute this, I would recommend scheduling the next meeting before you finish the meeting you’re having now. Alternatively, just have a standing meeting on the calendar and treat it like a serious commitment.

Happy planning!