ADHD: Disorder or Difference?

 

by Judie Gade, ADDult – My earliest memories, about being a bit different to other kids, were at about 3 years of age. I can remember standing on the white, picket fence at my family home asking strangers walking by, “Can you come play with me?” I wore my mother out with incessant chattering and messiness, annoyed the hell out of my older brother, who I adored, and infuriated my Dad with constant interruptions. I was a lonely, kindhearted little girl, with a very busy brain, and I could not figure out why I was having trouble making friends. I just did not know then that I wore people out, adults and kids alike, and I still do… at least now I know why!

I am an ADDult, that is, an adult who has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Unlike many people, I believe AD/HD is normal, often a gift …

Read More

Suddenly, There is Clarity!

 

Sudden Clarity Clarence | Know Your Meme

By Maurine Harrison: For days my mind had been in a hazy cloud, my energy and lightness of spirit only a memory. Is it the shortened, gray days of winter, I wondered? Since childhood I remember groping through days of gray head fog with sleep an all-too-sweet respite. Then, suddenly, one day, as if out of nowhere, comes clarity. It’s as if a bright light just switched on and sluggish neural networks of thoughts and ideas suddenly snap to attention. Suddenly, I know where to begin, how to order impulses and thoughts. It’s as if I have my whole brain working for me rather than against me.

This morning, I know I must write. Other things stay in the background. In fact, I hardly even notice them. What suddenly snapped into place, I wonder? My sleep has been inexplicably light for the last week. An over-the-counter sleep aid has …

Read More

ADHD – Coaching is What I Really Need??

I just read an article that was on the APA site, “ADHD-A Woman’s Issue” by Nicole Crawford, and I cried. I was diagnosed with ADHD when I was 26, one month after I finished my Masters in Ed (It was a miracle that I did). I have been on at least 8 different medication trials, none have been all too helpful, but I stuck with Wellbutrin. I suffer from Depression and Anxiety…I am EVERYTHING that was described in the article. I never knew that it was different in women.

So many people have been skeptical of my ADHD, saying that I am far from hyperactive. I just lost my second job in 1 1/2 years, because of tardiness and disorganization. I am an elementary school teacher. I am now 33 years old. I haven’t been in a relationship in 7 years because I am “too intense” and too depressed. I

Read More

Moms with ADD – A Self-Help Manual by Christine Adamec

Review by Kathleen Nadeau, Ph.D. – What better way to celebrate Mother’s Day than with a book review for you hard-working mothers with ADHD. Raising kids with ADHD is a challenge enough, and when we mothers have ADHD too – well, it seems to me we should lobby for a Moms with ADD Mother’s Day on at least a monthly basis!

Barring that, however, what we need is help to make our job less challenging, which is exactly what Chris Adamec, a mother with ADHD herself, set out to do.

Have any special Mother’s Day wishes? Chris included a list of mother’s wishes in her first chapter, asking women, “If you could make a magic wish related to your ADD (and can’t wish it were gone), what would you wish?”

  • For people to understand I don’t have to be a walking calendar to be a wonder person.
  • That I could
Read More

ADHD Artist – Patty Pearson

Patty Pearson, Wood Carver. I apprenticed with a master wood carver on the Southern Oregon Coast in the early 1970’s. I loved the luster of worked wood and enjoyed the physical labors of carving and sanding.

My designs have evolved from early influences of Swedish, Norwegian and early American treenware, and are now my original interpretations of the kind of tools that I like to use in my own kitchen. I have exhibited my work nationally in galleries, as well as the ACC Craft Fairs, Best of the Northwest shows, and two shows at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution.

Making a living as an artist is difficult at best. As a woman with AD/HD, I was able to be prolifically creative but had difficulty with the everyday necessities of marketing, sales and production. My ability to hyper-focus and work very hard enabled me to meet sales deadlines, but …

Read More

ADHD and Bipolar Disorder

ADHD and Bipolar Disorder in Children - YouTube

Dear Dr Quinn:

My 19-year-old daughter was diagnosed with AD/HD last June. She left for college with Adderall and came home four months later, with a GPA of 4.0 in Biochemistry and a major case of depression, and lots of anxiety. She was extremely irritable all semester. To make a long story short, after four (4) different antidepressants, and three months with her psychiatrist, she has been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. She went into a hypomania state after the fourth antidepressant was started. Needless to say, I am devastated and sad, but glad to know that the “something” that has been wrong for so long has a name. She has been taking Lamictal for five days. I am hoping that this Mood Stabilizer will be an answer for her.

Do you have any info or web page that deals with ADHD/Bipolar? I have been reading Driven to Distraction (which my …

Read More

The Invisible Girl: Growing Up With Undiagnosed Attention Deficit Disorder

by Kathleen Kelleher, Ph.D. – In school I tried my best to be a “good” little girl. I had already learned in my short life that this meant “being seen and not heard until spoken to”. It also meant listening attentively while the teacher spoke, but this did not come easily to me.

I remember well, sitting in the classroom with the teacher in front of the chalkboard. As the teacher droned on and on, I would tune in and out, and back in again. When I tuned in I caught bits and pieces of the lesson. When I tuned out, I created intricate stories in my mind. So, on I went, fabricating stories in my made up world in my head while lessons were taught, instructions were given, homework was assigned and much more.

A great part of my time in school was spent enduring reprimands; and for what, …

Read More

ADHD – Growing Up is Hard to Do!

 

Dear Dr. Nadeau,
I attended your session about girls who have ADD and clung to every word you said and ordered your book as soon as I got home. I learned that so many of my daughter’s symptoms can be attributed to ADD. I’ve had her evaluated many times and specifically asked about ADD, but they all said “no — she doesn’t have it.” I am appalled and discouraged that so many professionals were wrong. Now — they finally agree with me! And the psychological exam she had recently agrees too. I still cannot find a psychiatrist who has expertise in ADD, especially in girls.

My daughter, Heather, is about 15 years old developmentally although 23 chronologically — quite immature. Her IQ is in the low normal range. She graduated from high school and did pretty well because I structured her life and forced her to do homework. She …

Read More

Prevalence of Attention DeficitHyperactivity Disorder in Women Who are Obese

Introduction

National Health Week (April 13-20, 2003) focused on the issue of obesity. I thought it would be interesting to look at the prevalence of ADHD in women who are obese. The issue of eating disorders and obesity in women with ADHD was first raised by Dr. John Fleming, Ph.D., and Lance Levy in the chapter on eating disorders and ADHD in Understanding Women with ADHD.

Fleming and Levy reported on their work in an obesity clinic in Canada. They found that women who were least successful in losing weight in their eating disorders treatment program had a much higher incidence of undiagnosed ADHD than in the general population.

Dr. Fleming wrote that he believed this pattern had several causes, all related to ADHD. For example, changing unhealthy patterns of overeating or binge eating requires planning and consistency – two capacities that are compromised by the executive functioning challenges associated …

Read More

A Close Look at Girls With ADHD in the Classroom

Clinical reports have long described girls with ADHD as better behaved and more teacher-compliant in the classroom than boys with ADHD, and many have speculated that these factors have played an ongoing role in the under-diagnosis of girls with ADHD.

An important new study has carefully documented these different classroom behavior patterns. Abikoff and his colleagues examined 403 boys and 99 girls with combined type ADHD, ages 7-10, in a naturalistic classroom setting, to explore the effects of gender and comorbid conditions upon behavior.

To fully appreciate the importance of these findings, we want to underline that all of the girls in this study met the criteria for both hyperactive/impulsive ADHD, as well as inattentive type, and were therefore categorized as having “combined type.” We emphasize this because even these girls demonstrated few of the behaviors that so often lead to teacher referral. We can safely assume that girls …

Read More