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Re: Confused…

Re: Confused…2012-08-30T14:43:11+00:00

Post count: 430

Hi Distracted,

I wrestled with this as I was looking at my own life through the new lens of discovering I was ADD. It was both a relief because I had a tag I could now hang on the way I am, and a source of frustration as I thought about “Why wasn’t I born with a ‘Normal’ brain?”

Dr Oz is hardly an authority on ADD. He has a TV show which means he is a good entertainer, not necessarily a good doctor. I think he is desperately trying to explain a very complex, very individual, and very profound condition to the least common denominator in his audience. All the while, he is trying to understand the condition himself.

Here’s how I try to explain it to my friends:

The non ADHD people out there are like my neighbor on his riding lawnmower. He putts up and down the yard and sometimes to the store. He gets to where he is going at 2-3mph. He has plenty of time to contemplate life, his to-do list, and look around at the flowers, the birds, the bees and the trees. If he gets distracted, no big deal because at 2mph, he won’t ever stray far off the path. At the end of the day, his to-do list is done.

The ADHD people out there are like Mario Andretti in a 200mph Ferrari, with gas pedal stuck to the floor and no idea how to work the brake. In that same day, we could travel from San Fran to Miami and part way back! No time to see the birds, bees, trees, or much of anything else. It we get distracted, we could end up in Buffalo! At the end of the day, we realize we are very far off the path, we have seen some pretty cool things, and… oh yea.. groceries… forgot all about them.

For me, it is an effort to do some things like to-do lists and other things that most people seem to do as naturally as breathe. However, put me on a problem, and stand back! That Ferrari is revving up and wanting to go. When I am working a problem, I couldn’t think as slowly as a “normal” if I tried!

Done with that problem, put me on the next, and so on.

I am learning how to move from task to task, how to conserve my energy. How to use tools to make me more effective in society, by identifying things that play to MY strengths. Trying to discover what my strengths are. This is something that will take years of learning. Because society has told me all too often what I CAN’T do, but never what I CAN.

Dr Oz and others like him, have 5 minutes to identify the issue, explain it, make a few jokes, and move on. There is no way they can even scratch the surface on how ADD/ADHD affects our lives and the lives around us. No way.

Hope this helps.

I have learned a lot about ADD and I still wonder why I wasn’t born with a “Normal” brain, not from a “Why me” point of view, it has shifted to a “What am I supposed to do with it”. ;)