Archives for Female
It is so amazing how organizations are popping up all over the world helping us join forces to tackle mental health diseases. I was privileged enough to speak in Athens, Greece a few years ago about iFred's rebranding depression work, and learned from countries around the world just how important it is we work together to solve our greatest challenges. I've just recently been asked to join their advisory board, and continue to be amazed and impressed by the work of all throughout the world. It was celebrated across the U.S. when we were able to get mental health parity law passed. I don't by any means intend to minimize this work - but do we realize that what we accomplished was to treat the brain in a similar fashion to the heart, liver, and intestines? Should we really have to fight that hard for that? Those that were involved in the legislation understand the intense work, dedication, and challenge this simple piece of legislation involved - and unfortunately the rest of the world is so far behind us in many different ways.
Saying Yes When You Mean No: A Challenge for Those with ADHD and Tips for Giving the Right Answer the First Time
I can't tell you how many times I do this - say yes when I mean no. And it has caused so many problems in my life, and while I am getting better I need a constant reminder of how and why it is important to give the right answer the first time. That right answer never fails to be "let me think about it and get back to you." If you have ADHD you know that your mind often is way ahead of your reality. You want to say yes to those you care about, please others, do it all, see a smile on someone's face; often at the expense of yourself or your actual abilities. It is so difficult to think things through before you react in your 'aiming to please' way.
I haven't read studies, but I have to believe that women with ADHD have a much harder time coping with PMS than those without it. I have always had depression, but my life was mixed with alcohol which makes things a lot less clear, as it is always changing your brain chemistry. When I quit drinking completely at 33, and started living a more aware life sitting through any type of feeling, I started recognizing patterns. I was probably 36 by the time I realized just how much PMS had affected me earlier on, and have come to realize ADHD only added fuel to an already explosive situation. It was like a breath of fresh air once I started realizing what was happening. Every month, I feel completely 'awful terrible the world is ending.' Every month. In the past I didn't understand it so ran every which way but into and out of the feelings. Yet I never understood the connection.
Fine. I am totally ok admitting it to the whole world. I have an addiction to texting that try as I may, I cannot seem to beat. I am admitting now I am completely helpless over it - and asking all of you to help. Why? Because there doesn't seem to be many great solutions out there - and I find the best way to overcome something is to find someone else who has done it successfully and build on that. We don't have any NIH studies that show success rates of different treatments, so we need to join together and find solutions that work.
Why is it that being called 'crazy' is so bothersome? It's as if this one word cuts right to the core of our very being and makes us question our intrinsic worth. Yet what do we ADHDers do when someone calls us crazy? We act crazy! Crazy can mean all sorts of things; bizarre, fantastic, deranged, insane, or dangerous. I, personally, am using it in regards to how we term 'unpredictable' behavior. Often the word is thrown around, "You are acting crazy or that idea is crazy or did you take your crazy pills?!" Something about it just sets me off. People - call a spade a spade! If I am acting in a way that scares you or seems out of character and unpredictable, tell me!
One of my words for the year is Passion. Last night I was at a class that is serving as a type of spiritual grounding while I am on a project away from home. We read a poem and were asked to listen to what phrase or word spoke to us most, and I felt the passion jolt through my body when the words were spoken "I want to know" in regards to another person's feelings and thoughts. "YES", I thought. I want to know.
I want to be a good person. As a matter of fact, I strive to be a great person, and have big dreams for making a significant contribution to this world. Unfortunately, my attempt at perfection continues to catapult me from a world of despair to joy to despair again. The list of 'to do's' that us ADHDers have, and really anybody for that matter, is tremendous. I mean, every day, I expect more than perfection and wonder why I feel so shitty. Look at my list, who can do this?
I'm writing today as a reminder to both myself and everyone else in the world that we are all a work in progress. Beating ourselves up does absolutely NO good, in fact it usually makes things quite worse. It is quite easy for me to say that to others, but so infrequent that I take time to remind myself. I had a pretty severe therapy session yesterday. I mean, I was hating me. Everything about me. I was especially focused on my inability to control my texting even after continual negative consequences on my romantic life.
I'm 39 years old and still I feel like I just said two very bad words; sex and orgasm. I'm looking around for the blog police. I'm not sure why we are trained to 'shhhhhhh' about sex as young kids, but it certainly gets in the way of understanding sex in a healthy way. I did not understand the benefit of orgasm until a much later age, and to me now it is just as important as balanced nutrition, clean water, sound sleep, and moderate exercise.
It took me until I was 35 years old to figure out my hormones. And even now they trick me no matter what I do to say I won't be affected. I don't have just PMS, or PPMD, I have something-is-taking-over-my-body type hormonal changes. I can only think it is made all the worse by my ADHD. Let's think about it. I get extremely moody, feel absolutely HORRIBLE in the pit of my being without even realizing why, and can not escape the feeling of terrible hopelessness. Then let's look at ADHD and how it adds to the complete chaos: Impulsivity - adds to my need for 'MUST ESCAPE these feelings NOW, frantically trying to find solutions without thorough thought. Hyperactivity - amplifies the feelings of hopelessness. Inattention - can't even focus on the feelings long enough to understand what is happening, where they are coming from, or reflect on them - simply need to escape.