Home » Blogs » ADHD Man of Distraction » Anxiety And ADHD: Symptom Or Co-morbid Condition?

Anxiety And ADHD: Symptom Or Co-morbid Condition?

It's not that easy ...
It’s not that easy …

Do I need to remind you of what time of year it is? Not likely. If you’re reading this blog because you have first hand knowledge of ADHD you’re probably saying “Please don’t tell me what time of year it is.”

Fine, I won’t. That will help me maintain a plausible denial as well. But wait, I already told you on Wednesday that I’m okay with the season. I’m easing myself into it, doing things as they come up, not committing myself to big deals or extravagant responsibilities. That part is working out swimmingly.

But I still have some anxiety. I left it a little late to tell you about this great idea I’ve had, this slipping into the festivities slowly and not volunteering to take care of absolutely everything. So that not telling you has me feeling a little anxious.

But wait, there’s more

Add to that, the fact that there are still obligations that are simply understood, certain presents that need to be acquired, people visited, greetings extended.

Anxiety abounds

The classic anxiety piles up, right? But is it classic? Or is it classic ADHD? Okay, I don’t think that only ADHDers suffer from holiday stress. I’m thick, but not that thick.

The question I’m asking here is, if you have ADHD, do you naturally have anxiety? Is it a symptom? Or is it a co-morbid condition? I say … both. The anxiety that I have about my shortcomings when it comes to scheduling, organizing, finishing … that’s an ongoing stress. And the more conundrums that my ADHD causes, the more I stress about it, and the more I’m convinced that I’ll have more things to stress about, and the more stressed I’ll get about that, and … Well, it’s ongoing.

That’s symptomatic, what about co-morbid?

A co-morbid anxiety issue would be one of having ADHD AND clinical anxiety at the same time. It’s not the norm, but it isn’t unusual either.

But, what really has me worried … (sorry)

“Is it possible that someone who has both ADHD and clinical anxiety can be made well with respect to the clinical anxiety and still […]”

The big problem as I see it is in the occurrence of both symptomatic and clinical anxiety simultaneously. Would one not feed the other.

I also wonder if they can be separated. If you have co-morbid, clinical anxiety, can that anxiety be recognized, segregated, treated independently? Is it possible that someone who has both ADHD and clinical anxiety can be made well with respect to the clinical anxiety and still end up feeling the ADHD related symptomatic anxiety?

And if so, would that be an ongoing concern? Would one always have to worry that the symptomatic anxiety might just be a trigger for the recurrence of the clinical anxiety?

Heavy thoughts, yes?

I don’t know that answer, but I know what I’m going to do until I find out, I’m going to continue to stress myself out as little as possible when it comes to things like the holiday season.

When it comes to anxiety, I’m going to do my best to reduce mine as much as possible. I figure it’s like house work, they say it won’t kill you, but why take the chance, right?

Anxiety And ADHD: Symptom Or Co-morbid Condition?

Kelly Babcock

I was born in the city of Toronto in 1959, but moved when I was in my fourth year of life. I was raised and educated in a rural setting, growing up in a manner I like to refer to as free range. I live in an area where my family history stretches back 6 or more generations. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 50 and have been both struggling with the new reality and using my discoveries to make my life better. I write two blogs here at Psych Central, one about having ADHD and one that is a daily positive affirmation that acts as an example of finding the good in as much of my life as I possibly can.

Find out more about me on my website: writeofway.

email me at ADHD Man

No comments yet... View Comments / Leave a Comment



APA Reference
Babcock, K. (2013). Anxiety And ADHD: Symptom Or Co-morbid Condition?. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 7, 2019, from


Last updated: 15 Dec 2013
Statement of review: Psych Central does not review the content that appears in our blog network ( prior to publication. All opinions expressed herein are exclusively those of the author alone, and do not reflect the views of the editorial staff or management of Psych Central. Published on All rights reserved.