The ADD Mythology (Part 1)

Notes to the Reader:

  1. This blog post was written by Betsy Davenport.
  2. Betsy detests the term “ADDer,” but she couldn’t come up with anything else. As Editor-in-Chief and blog owner, I’ve decided to use the term “ADDer.”

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Myth No. 1: ADD Does Not Exist
These little rumors keep cropping up, have you heard them? “ADD is a made-up disorder.” “Everyone loses her keys.” “ADD is just an excuse for bad parenting.” “If you could do it yesterday, you can do it today.” “It’s just laziness; you need to try harder.” “If you’d just take more responsibility for your own belongings, assignments and work …”

The best thinkers, speakers, writers and clinicians, supported by the best researchers, are finally making significant inroads into these awful, archaic, moralistic, shaming remarks. We know more now; we can forgive the people who could not have known; and, filled with the confidence of the emerging truths, we can ignore with greater ease those who continue to campaign against things about which they do not trouble themselves to learn.

Those of us old enough to have children and grandchildren know the dreadful pain caused by those shaming, demoralizing, mischaracterizations. And a person suffering under the strain of swimming upstream every day, all day, and sometimes half the night, risks as a result the loss of an accurate concept of the self as basically good and decent and of good will. There is not enough therapy, or time, in the world to heal those wounds. Like the drip-drip-drip of water torture — was that real? or made up? — described in books of long ago, the slow erosion of the spirit can only end badly; and the world itself loses, as well, the contributions of, and the pleasures of being with, regular people whose brains function in a Quirky way.

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  • Gina Pera

    Eloquently said.

    Thank you, Betsy — and Jeff.

    I’m glad you can “ignore with greater ease” those who will not trouble themselves to learn and who will continue to campaign against compassion and reality.

    I find I have less and less patience with them, especially those who are trained physicians and psychologists. Some should be clearly called out for the grandstanding egotists that they are, IMHO, seeking to make a name for themselves in the only way they can: by denying or minimizing ADHD challenges. And, in the process, pandering to and exploiting public ignorance. Pretty shameful stuff.

  • Jeff

    And what do you say to those who believe there is an Albert Einstein inside every ADDer?

  • Scott Hutson

    What would I say? 1st response would be> When Albert was unwrapped, apparently, one of his straggly hairs got tangled up with some of my neurotransmitters. Can you get me another genius with well kept head @ facial hair?

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