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August 26, 2008


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Verna Wilder

Congratulations on telling your parents about your ADD, Kathleen. While I don't have that particular challenge, I do know what it's like to live with depression and to decide on a case by case basis who I tell and who I don't tell. I have friends who are bipolar, and I'm learning a lot about not making assumptions about people based on certain behavior. And I am grateful that they trusted me enough to tell me. You've given your father a gift while doing a good thing for yourself.

Rosemary Carstens

ADD is not one of my personal challenges, either, Kathleen, but I can certainly identify with parents who don't "get" who you are. I've lived with that all my life and it's been a sadness for me. I've reached the stage where I realize I can grieve for what I've never had, but I can also be thankful that there are a few other people who do acknowledge me and appreciate me for who I am instead of wondering why the hell I can't act like "normal" people! --Rosemary Carstens

Shari Phiel

A few years back, I was working at a fairly large company with a highly diverse group of employees. I worked in corporate finance, with a highly detailed, organized group of people - perfect for this kind of work. All except for my boss. He had ADD and I do not. Although we had some challenges working together at first, I found his ability to work on multiple projects, moving from one to the next to the next and then back to the first a liberating experience. He taught me to let go of some of the "rules" that had become embedded in my brain and style of work.

And some days he just plain drove me crazy.

Congratulations on having the courage to discuss this with your family. No matter what, they're never easy conversations to have.

Elsi Dodge

How good to hear about adult ADD, which is mostly ignored. "You'll grow out of it" or "huh?" seem to be the most frequent reactions to adults with ADD, which is hardly fair. Talking with your parents can be freeing—congratulations!

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    Why Call It ADD?

    • The name is so wrong. ADD stands for attention deficit disorder, and ADHD adds an H for hyperactivity. I use the former, since I don't have the H thing.

      But a deficit of attention? I think most of us with ADD would agree we have more like a surplus of attention. And a disorder? That leaves out our strengths.

      Still, I use ADD because it's a widely understood term for a useful concept. When you comment on this site, feel free to use whatever term you're comfortable with.


    • If you have ADD, you’ve probably heard plenty of criticism over the years—including from yourself. Enough of that! Here are my requests to those who comment:

      Don't criticize others, give advice, or speculate on others’ motives.

      Do share your own experience, strength, and hope!

    New to ADD?

    You Can Meditate!

    • Links to Online Guided Meditations
      Research suggests that meditation might help address the symptoms of ADD (and a lot of other conditions). But if you have ADD, you might find it hard to meditate. I compiled this list of online guided meditations. See if they help!


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