6 thoughts on “ADHD and Gullibility – Part II

  • February 28, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Hi Zoe!

    I’m ADHD (diagnosed at age 21). I’ve been following your blog for a while now and I even have a copy of your book. This is my first time commenting on a blog entry. I felt compelled to comment because you put into words how I have felt throughout my life but could never quite explain to others. The two paragraphs – ‘Misplaced generosity of spirit’ and ‘Wanting to be accepted’ have been recurring themes in my life. Due to feeling that way, I have often been latched onto by others who took advantage of me, were abusive, or were just plain ol’ unhealthy people for me to be around. At 43 years old, I’m trying my best to unlearn the bad habits of saying “yes” when I should have said, “no” and to be more reticent when I first meet people to make sure they are good people to be around. Thanks for your great blog!

    • February 28, 2014 at 1:16 pm

      Hi Paula.

      I’m so glad the piece resonated with you. Being taken advantage of certainly is a common theme for many ADHD adults (women especially), so at least you know you’re not alone! I like what you said about unlearning bad habits – I think that’s a huge part of the battle: realizing they are habits, and as such, we can replace them with more healthy ways of being. It sounds like you’re on the right track. All the best to you on your journey!

      Take care,

  • March 7, 2014 at 11:39 am

    I have read this posting so many times now i might as well print it! It is so clear and understanding. It helps me feel better to be reminded that many times the misadventures or poor decisions come out of otherwise positive traits — if only i had applied the “brakes” (listened to intuition) in time. Like the “misplaced generosity of spirit”, wanting to give others the benefit of the doubt has been way too powerful in my life, causing innumerable problems, some massive. Thought i had learned a lot from those but, au contraire, while reading your blog it hit me how this trait is a big part of the terrible angst with some current decisions! OMG, so important and So helpful.

    Wanting to be accepted, to be part of some embracing community, caused many disappointments in earlier years. Fortunately, if i slip now i no longer embarrass easily. But i know that i Still need to be wary when loneliness creeps in and influences me to consider doing things that are not a good fit. (Then i know that i need to remind myself that i may FEEL out of synch, but in fact, my life is not lonely; need to remind myself to feel okay when i feel “alone”.)

    Obviously this post really “spoke” to me. Not so obvious is how often that is true! Zoe, thank you so much.

    • March 7, 2014 at 1:49 pm

      Hi Susan.

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I’m so glad the post was helpful. We all need reminders to stay on track, or to get back on track if we’ve distractedly wandered off (as we all do from time to time!).

      As for, “Not so obvious is how often that is true!” Therein lies the opportunity: now that you’ve enhanced your awareness, you have a jump-off point for deeper analysis, which will lead to your own creative solutions or to finding resources with further suggestions to help you more consistently avoid these challenges in the future.

      Please remember that just as our challenges are ongoing, so too are the opportunities to “tweak” our solutions, find new ones, or find better ones. Please be gentle with yourself, never lose your curiosity, and know that you’re always doing your best (our best varies depending on how much sleep we’ve had; what else is going on in our lives, etc.). We don’t need to be perfect; we just need to be aware and keep trying.

      All the best to you,

  • March 8, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    do you think it might be possible — not that everyone with ADHD/ADD MISSES social cues but that maybe we see/hear ALL of them coming at a us at once and can’t sort them out or decide which ones “other” people respond to. Sometimes I think we DO get the cues about the real message, i.e, we see the “whole picture,” but haven’t learned that we are supposed to pretend – for social reasons – that that we didn’t see what we saw…. Just thoughts …

    I remain puzzled about it all and what’s really going on ,but the frustration about how hard it is to keep on track remains constant. Imagine if there were a sort of pacemaker attention switch we could flip when we needed to stick with something – and when we needed to let go,too.

    • March 24, 2014 at 3:38 pm

      I completely agree with your first observation. In my memoir I wrote about how sometimes I did get the social cues, but chose – not consciously, mind you – to ignore them for a variety of reasons. Picking up on the social cues was not connected with my response, which is what caused the problems. It was like I was helpless to act on what I saw. Most of that time, it meant I was helpless to stop talking! Of course I still didn’t know anything about ADHD and how it works. The more I understand, the more I can choose my responses (medication helped too).

      As for being puzzled about it all – don’t worry, you’re not the only one. There is wide disagreement even amongst experts and researchers, so it’s no wonder we lay people are confused at times about various aspects of ADHD. I do love your idea about having an “attention switch” we can flip on and off. Let me know when you’ve got that invented, ‘k? I have a business proposition for you… ha ha

      Take care, and thanks so much for your comments.



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