Parenting a boy with ADHD can seem like a full-time job in and of itself. They are always on the go and onto the next thing. Just understanding what’s going on in their minds, let alone providing them positive direction based on the way they see the world, requires time and energy. We love our sons for who they are but we know we can’t do it alone, so it’s important to put them in activities in which they’ll flourish.
For most moms, hunting isn’t the first activity that comes to mind. It may even seem counterintuitive to give a hyperactive, impulsive boy an 8mm Mauser rifle. But with the proper training and direction, your son may impress you with his increased sense of responsibility. And as he takes to bow hunting, you’ll be proud of his maturity.
Would you believe that your son may even be wired for hunting?
No, this does not imply that your son is wired to kill. [As a brief aside, the act of taking an animal’s life is a sacred one. Learning to do so with reverence will help your son to develop a sense of connection to and respect for nature.] Instead, it implies that the chemical makeup of your son that manifest as ADHD symptoms, were useful survival skills in ancestral times.
Salif Mahamane is an experimental cognitive psychologist who also happens to have ADHD. In 2015, he gave a TED talk at Utah State University about the root of the condition and alternative perspectives on how we engage with ADHD (definitely worth the watch). Salif points out is that during times of our hunter-gatherer ancestors, the survival of whole groups of people, depended on men with the very characteristics that we see in people with ADHD today. These men needed to go ahead of the group and scout for food, track animals, and monitor the environment for potential threats. They necessarily developed to constantly be on the move and consider a myriad of factors from the external environment because the livelihood of their group depended upon it.
Think hunting might be an activity your son would enjoy?
If you think your son may take to hunting but aren’t sure where to begin, consider deer hunting. There have never been as many whitetail deer in north America as there are today. We even have a population control problem so deer hunting is extremely accessible in every state. Check out the nearest gun safety training course and they can provide you will all of the proper information to getting your son started.