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ADHD is not your fault!

Most people who discover they have ADHD, whether they be children or adults, have suffered a great deal of pain. The emotional experience of ADHD is filled with embarrassment, humiliation, and self-castigation. By the time the diagnosis is made, many people with ADHD have lost confidence and blame themselves.  It’s important to remember, however, that ADHD is NOT your fault or the effect of bad parenting.  ADHD is a neuropsychiatric condition. It is genetically transmitted. It is caused by biology, by how your brain is wired.  It is NOT a disease of the will, nor a moral failing.  It is NOT caused by a weakness in character, nor by a failure to mature.  Its cure is not to be found in the power of the will, nor in punishment, nor in sacrifice, nor in pain. ALWAYS REMEMBER THIS.  Try as they might, many people with ADHD have great trouble accepting the syndrome as being rooted in biology rather than weakness of character.

So if your blaming yourself for having ADHD, remind yourself right now: “IT’S  NOT MY FAULT,” and I encourage you to:

  1. Educate yourself.  You need to learn what ADHD is and what it isn’t.  Perhaps the single most powerful treatment for ADHD is understanding ADHD in the first place. You need to understand what a positive attribute ADD can be in your life. So read books.  Talk with professionals. Talk with other adults who have ADHD. You need to understand ADHD well enough to embrace it so you don’t blame yourself. You need to realize that while it may be holding you back right now, in time, with the right help, it can propel you to the fulfillment of your dreams.
  2. Try Coaching.  It can be helpful for to have a coach, for some person near you to keep after you, but always with humor. Your coach can help you get organized, stay on task, give you encouragement or remind you to get back to work. Friend, colleague, or therapist (it is possible, but risky for your coach to be your spouse), a coach is someone to stay on you to get things done, exhort you as coaches do, keep tabs on you, and in general be in your corner. A coach can be tremendously helpful in treating ADHD.
  3. Consider joining or starting a support group. Much of the most useful information about ADHD has not yet found its way into books but remains stored in the minds of the people who have ADHD. In groups this information can come out. Plus, groups are really helpful in giving the kind of support that is so badly needed.

Your habit of blaming yourself for having ADHD will not change overnight, but in time through education, coaching and therapy, you will realize that ADHD is not your fault!

 

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