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Women & ADHD Articles

Defining Success When You Have ADHD

Thursday, April 24th, 2014
Zoë summits the mountain with ADHD! ( Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada)

Zoë summits the mountain with ADHD! ( Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada)

“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.”

- Maya Angelou

Before I knew about ADHD, I often felt like a failure. Instead of summiting the mountain, I was more likely to fly into it (flying without an air traffic controller will do that to you).

After my diagnosis, I understood that I was working with a different brain and a highly sensitive nervous system. I also realized that the popularized notions of success were set by the dominant culture, in other words, by non-ADHD brains.

I needed to find my own definition of success and ways to achieve it; otherwise, I’d be doomed to perpetually slam into mountains.


ADHD and Procrastiphobia

Monday, April 21st, 2014

A Brand New Day Thomas Hawk via Compfight

Recently, I discovered that I’ve developed Procrastiphobia, a neurotic fear of procrastination. (Don’t look up Procrastiphobia; I made it up. Sometimes I have to do that to fully capture the ADHD experience. I know you get it, just like you got Form-O-Phobia, blurtacious, and NSL.)

But back to the dilemma at hand: fear of procrastination.

Given the fact that procrastination was the nemesis that led to my ADHD diagnosis, it’s not unreasonable that I would fear its destructive power.


Don’t Kiss the Cat

Thursday, April 10th, 2014
Zoë and Sunshine, 1991

Zoë and Sunshine, 1991

There are two kinds of people: those who will kiss their cat on the cheek or their dog on the lips and those who won’t. I once had a vet who kissed her dogs on the lips. She’s lived to tell the tale.

Don’t kiss the cat

As most of you know, I recently made the decision to go off my ADHD medication. I’ve been hypervigilant in monitoring what changes occur in my decision-making, relationships, and ability to find my keys.

I’ve noticed some differences but I’m happy to say not enough to go back on medication. It hadn’t been working very well anyway.

Still, there was this one incident…


Unhappy April Fool’s Day

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

Day 275: A fellow of infinite jest Tim via Compfight

I’ve been racking my brains trying to figure out why I can’t think of an April Fool’s Day post. I love writing humor, why would this be so hard?

This morning on Twitter one of my wise and wonderful Twitter peeps pointed out the obvious: her ADHD son has been dreading April Fool’s Day for weeks. Aha!

April Fool’s Day with ADHD is no joke.

How can you get creative and have fun with a day that scares the hell out of you? Writer’s block was inevitable.


Why I’m Going Off ADHD Medication

Friday, March 28th, 2014

i wish i had shot this R Kurtz via Compfight

I’ve been off my ADHD stimulant medication for about two weeks now.

When I started taking meds, I promised myself that one day I’d get off them. It looks like that day is here.

I didn’t plan it, exactly. My prescription ran out and my doctor was on holidays so I couldn’t get it renewed.

My decision not to renew my prescription

The medication hasn’t been as effective over the past few years as it had been, so, after about two weeks with no major disasters, I decided to make my move.

Given that some adults don’t respond to ADHD medications (notably Dr. Ned Hallowell, co-author of Driven to Distraction among them) I figure there must be a way to do this.

Truth be told, I’m perfectly willing to go back on meds if my experiment fails.


New Research on ADHD and Childhood Abuse

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

Where Angels CryCreative Commons License D. Sharon Pruitt via Compfight

A study published on March 3, 2014 in the Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment, and Trauma shows 30% of adults with ADHD reporting physical abuse before the age of 18 (as opposed to 7% of the general population). The researchers conclude that there’s a strong association between childhood abuse and ADHD.

Sadly, I’m not surprised. This was on my list of as-yet unproven theories about ADHD. I talked about some of the reasons why kids with ADHD were at higher risk of being abused in my post Spanking Hurts ADHD Kids More Than You Think, Part I.

My theory takes this link a little further. I’m convinced that not only is there a link between childhood abuse and ADHD, but it’s likely that your ADHD symptoms are more severe and more intractable if you experience both, especially if you’re not diagnosed until late in life.


ADHD: What Are We Good At? 5 Steps to Find Out

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Emma is puzzled...Creative Commons License Andrew Mitchell via Compfight

Recently, a woman we’ll call Jane asked me some questions that I think we’ve all asked at one time or another, so I’d like to share my response with all of you.

Jane wrote:

“I was only diagnosed with ADHD at 25. Trying to be something I’m not is the story of my life. My question is: What are we good at? Almost everything requires paperwork and some ability to keep a semblance of organizational skills and professions require the passing of exams…the bane of my life. What are we suited for?”

I remember asking the very same questions not long after my diagnosis. Almost a decade later, I can share the good news: adults with ADHD can do just about anything they put their minds to!

That said, there are five steps we need to take to steer clear of our pre-diagnosis roadblocks.


Find Your Wings and Soar with ADHD

Wednesday, March 5th, 2014

Finding Your Wings and Soaring with ADHDCreative Commons License Dawn Huczek via Compfight

I sat on the back step in the morning sunlight. The birds sang “Spring is coming.” At minus seventeen degrees celsius, with snow banks on my deck taller than me, it was hard to believe.

I popped in the earbuds. Adele played, but not so loud that I didn’t catch the regular tap-tap-tapping that started up to my right.

A woodpecker, I thought.

I glanced at my neighbor’s deck. His teardrop-shaped feeder appeared to be unoccupied. I waited. Then, sure enough, a downy woodpecker emerged from the south side, settling in profile on the west side and continuing her tapping.


ADHD and Gullibility – Part II

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014

Too Close - Explored Don McCullough via Compfight

In ADHD and Gullibility – Part I I shared an incident where I nearly got caught by a telephone scam artist. Those of us with ADHD might be smart, but unfortunately that doesn’t inoculate us against being taken advantage of.

In today’s post I’ll explain why we can be sitting ducks for practical jokers,  scammers, and con-artists, and what to do about it.

Missing social cues

As kids, a lot of us with ADHD were either drowning in social awkwardness; having too much fun splashing in the pool; or too busy fantasizing about sailing the seven seas to have learned to read social cues.


ADHD and Gullibility – Part I

Monday, February 10th, 2014

ADHD gullibility...Is Your Fridge Running?Remember the first time someone pointed at something over your shoulder, you turned around and they pulled a fast one on you? I still blush when I get caught. You’d think at my age I wouldn’t get caught. Or blush.

Apparently, I’m not alone in my gullibility and sometime naïveté. There are some good reasons why adults with ADHD might be more gullible or overly trusting than others.

I’ll explore the reasons for this in Part II. For now, here’s a story about how last week, I nearly got caught.


ADHD
From A to Zoë



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Recent Comments
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