April 3, 2011 at 6:10 am #89410
WgreenParticipantApril 3, 2011 at 6:10 amPost count: 445
One of the resources listed on the sidebar to the left is the website of Dr. Ned Hallowell—Harvard man, psychiatrist specializing in ADD/ADHD, and author of the bestselling “Delivered From Distraction.”
On his home page, he dismisses the notion that ADD is a disorder, asserting: “In my opinion, ADHD is a terrible term. As I see it, ADHD is neither a disorder, nor is there a deficit of attention. I see ADHD as a trait, not a disability. When it is managed properly, it can become a huge asset in one’s life. I both have ADHD myself and I wrote a book with Catherine Corman profiling a collections [sic] of fabulously successful adults all of whom have ADHD, so I know whereof I speak.”
So ADD is a misnomer, because It is NOT really a deficit of attention, NOR even a disorder. With a little “management,” it is an asset that can make you “successful,” maybe even a… millionaire!
Ergo, all the people on this site whose lives are in shambles—financially, emotionally, professionally, and otherwise—really have an enormous asset that simply masquerades as a debilitating disorder.
What a relief. I was worried there for a few decades that I was having to contend with a terrible illness that impacted almost every aspect of my life.
It is EXTREMELY disheartening to discover that the mental health community can’t even agree on what ADD is, much less how best to mitigate its devastating consequences, uh, I mean unleash its unlimited potential. No wonder so many people see ADD as a myth and our symptoms as nothing more than weaknesses of character.REPORT ABUSEApril 3, 2011 at 7:04 am #102925
Lindstr7MemberApril 3, 2011 at 7:04 amPost count: 103
I haven’t read his book, but what I get from that message is that he is trying to shift the label of ADD being a disability to being a condition that, once treated, can be an asset. Sounds a little like positive self-talk, ie, I AM a beautiful person, I CAN do whatever I want to do, I AM someone special. I think its kind of silly and condecending personally. Rebranding the disorder and putting a positive spin on it to make people feel better about having the condition (trying to sell books perhaps). However, many people who have ADD do seem to have positive traits that are overshadowed by the negative, thus holding them back from accessing their creative abilities and strengths.
It is disheartening that there doesn’t seem to be a solid consensus, but Dr.s don’t know everything and one dr’s. view whose opinion is “more colorful” than the mainstream’s shouldn’t throw you off course. I know for me, since having started Ritalin a few weeks ago, I find I am able to develop the positive, creative side of me without all the noise, doubt and distraction holding me back. I’ll be you too have a creative side, I can see it in your humor (cynicism?)
Sometimes I hate telling people here that Ritalin is helping me (tremendously) for fear of being accused of advocating for drugs and the pharmaceutical industry. i’m just sharing what my experience has been and allthough there are common traits ADDrs may share, everyone is different and reacts differently to treatments. I’d watch the video series here. It gives good insight and information ….helped me a lot. Just want to say, there is help, there is hope… without sounding like a walking platitude. Its late, I’m tired, I hope this makes sense. I wish you luck Wgreen.REPORT ABUSEApril 3, 2011 at 2:47 pm #102926
WgreenParticipantApril 3, 2011 at 2:47 pmPost count: 445
I understand that it takes decades, if not centuries, to arrive at “settled science.” I understand that we’re just beginning to plumb the mysteries of the brain, of the human personality. I suspect that what, today, we call ADD is likely in the future to be understood as a more complex congeries of various disorders, each with its own name or moniker.
Still, I find it disturbing is that “an expert” would suggest that attention deficit, which millions of us have to contend with, is nothing more than a figment of our overactive imaginations. That’s what the doctor seems to imply, above. If he’s right, we all need to go back to the drawing board and figure out what lies at the vortex of our inability to control our attention spans, our debilitating impulsive and compulsive behaviors. Cheeseburgers? Scented soap?
Moreover, it astonishes me that Dr. Hallowell lacks the perspicacity to understand that “successful” means a lot more than career “success.” Heck, I invented a product and started a business that made millions of dollars. I’ve been written up in the New York Times; in Entrepreneur magazine. So what? I’d trade it in a second for a serene neurology that would have allowed me to be a better father, a better husband, a better friend, a better employer or employee, a better everything. ADD is not just about personal success (though it certainly is about that, too), it’s about our ability—or inability—to connect with others, to give others the everyday support THEY need. When we talk about ADD sufferers, we’re not just talking about those of us who have it. We’re also talking about those poor folks who have to put up with us.
Lindstr, I’m glad Ritalin is giving you some relief. I can’t seem to tolerate any of the meds. And though it may be an ADD overreaction, I’ll admit I also have a hard time with people who want to call the plague a bad cold.
BTW, speaking of hope, someone once said that Gratitude is love projected into the past; Charity is love projected into the present; and Hope is love projected into the future. We all must hope. We just have to, whether we feel like it or not.REPORT ABUSEApril 3, 2011 at 6:10 pm #102927
Curlymoe115MemberApril 3, 2011 at 6:10 pmPost count: 206
I don’t think that ADD is a disease, I think it is a part of our DNA make up. So trying to treat the disease is a bit of a misnomer. Look at the heavy component of genetics that play into this. So then you have to look at all the other personality traits which are also part of our DNA and you see why this is so complex. Then there is the whole nurture vs nature thing. I was raised by two ADHD parents. Who were raised by two ADHD parents. I myself am married to another ADHD. Who was also raised by two ADHD parents who were raised by two ADHD parents. It is extremely scary looking at the genetics that my children are now having to deal with. Was I attracted to my spouse because I recognized something in him. Was that what attracted him to me. Is our marriage more successful then my siblings because I found a partner who is familiar with what I deal with. But ADD research is still in its infancy and even the so called experts can not agree because like all mental illnesses this is so misunderstood. While we can identify common traits with a segment of the ADD and ADHD population no two of us are identical. Even my own children and siblings are different from me. ADHD cycles in my life. I have periods where I am highly successful and efficient but then something will happen and I am like a child struggling to understand what went wrong. The clutter builds up and then the patterns of my brain get cluttered. My moods cycle and I change.
With certain medications we can control parts of our behaviour. But at what price is that control. What does it do to our biological make up. My spouse is outgoing and boisterous at work. He is extremely focused and driven. He can control his outbursts and keep everything negative bottled up for the 10 or 12 hours he is working. But when he gets home he has an overriding need to be alone. He goes upstairs and holes up for the rest of the evening. He is usually grumpy and sensitive and anything can set him off. But he isn’t like this at work. No they don’t know him and wouldn’t recognize him at all. Yet when he is off work and able to relax and not worry about others opinions he is funny and sarcastic. We go out and have fun and he is himself and is able to just let it all hang out. The whole family can also work better. My daughters respond directly to dad. If he is in a good mood they are relaxed and say whatever comes to mind. When he is tense they are usually tense as well and everything leads to a confrontation.
Our daughters have distilled ADHD down to an almost pure form. So many inherited traits combined from both sides of the family and you wonder what they will have when they start to have children. I have seen in our oldest that she often picks a person with most of the same traits she exhibits. Her relationships are usually volatile. She has no impulse control and now she is a alcoholic and a drug addict. She has already been treated for these conditions for 5 years even though she is only just turned 18. She abstains from drinking and doing drugs except on weekends. Then she tells us she only does the safe ones. She still doesn’t understand that for someone with her history there is no safe use. But addiction seems to go hand in hand with ADHD. So many of mine and DH’s family suffer from addictions of one form or another. Smoking, drugs, alcohol, food, gambling, gaming and others.
With every new doctor they want to talk about my pregnancies. Were they normal, did you use drugs or alcohol, are there any environmental anomalies. By the time we get to the family histories on both sides they are boggling. I really think that if doctors want to understand ADHD they should do a family study. Look back at all alive family members that are willing to participate. Since we now can decode so much of our DNA that this is the perfect time to really understand where these traits are coming from. I certainly didn’t come fully formed into the world and when you do complete home studies coupled with DNA decoding I think it would unravel a lot of things. There are the uber successes and the dismal failures. What makes them different, the same. How is it that so many are successful in one aspect of their lives but everything else falls apart. What kinds of partners do they marry, what causes one marriage to be successful and another with a similar partner be an unmitigated disaster.REPORT ABUSE
What am I missing??Wgreen2011-04-03T06:10:39+00:00
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