Robin’s comments ADD Tip o the day 235

 Robin, a professional specialist on ADD, commented:

‘That’s a common thing in adults who are not diagnosed until adulthood – grief.  I could get by for a really long time by doing things in my screwy Robin way – I remember erasing the previous day’s homework and writing over it because I’d forgotten paper or whatever in the second grade.  This worked pretty well on a Big Chief pad until the teacher one day wanted ALL our homeworks passed up at once and I had to explain I’d been erasing my work (and her red pencil) and writing on the same sheet for awhile.  I always forgot about picture day, and so I am shown in a Journey t-shirt in the yearbook for student council or something.

I bumbled through everything in my childhood, occasionally hitting something right, and by the time I got to grad school I just figured I was lucky and had fooled some people.  I have a very good memory and that helps tremendously.  (But it pisses me off that other people have such crappy memories.)  I can read, write, spell, do math, etc., but I cannot take down letters or numbers that somebody says out loud to me.  It’s like I am struck with dementia when that happens.  It usually takes me a half-second longer to understand what someone is saying too.  I have learned to focus intently on things and I can be a dog with a bone sometimes, not understanding I need a break.  I tell clients that ADHD is not the inability to pay attention so much as it is difficulty modulating attention according to demands – and hence the hyperfocus that people notice.  I don’t find it hard to pay attention to clients at all, because they are right in front of me and I am looking at them and I don’t face the window when I’m working.  It took a long time, but I learned to eat regularly enough and take bathroom breaks so I didn’t have my body as a distraction.

Sure, you can use the comments for promotion and such.  My brother Jeff has ADHD also and was also diagnosed in adulthood.  Between us, I have about fifty good stories of ADHD stuff.  I manage very well now with just an occasional blip here and there.  I can “unravel” focus-wise sometimes but meds, fish oil and exercise help tremendously.’


i appreciate the comments and book reviews.  Thank you!

add, adhd, coping with add, coping with adhd, living with add, living with adhd

About doug with ADHD

I am a psychiatric physician. I learned I have ADHD at age 64, and then wrote two ADHD books for adults, focusing on strategies for making your life better. I just published my first novel, Alma Means Soul. Your Life Can Be Better; strategies for adults with ADD/ADHD available at, or (for e books) Living Daily With Adult ADD or ADHD: 365 Tips O the Day ( e-book). This is one tip at a time, one page at a time, at your own pace. It's meant to last a year. As a child, I was a bully. Then there was a transformation. Now I am committed to helping people instead abusing them. The Bully was published in January, 2016. It's in print or e book, on Amazon.
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2 Responses to Robin’s comments ADD Tip o the day 235

  1. themacroscope says:

    That’s uncanny – that’s exactly how I’ve “fooled” people all throughout school (I’m a senior in college, and have no idea how I got here). I have an excellent memory and can remember things I read, see, or hear once really easily. I don’t really know why, and it doesn’t seem like this amazing talent to me — but it drives me absolutely INSANE when other people can’t remember things (other than things like appointments… that’s different). I excelled in foreign language, so I took a lot of different language courses and whenever I would study vocabulary with my classmates I would want to beat my head against the wall.

    And I know exactly what you mean about the difficulty taking down numbers/letters people read out loud. It’s like they suddenly start speaking Greek or something, I’m lucky if I get the first or last number when people read me their phone numbers (and I don’t have dyslexia or anything along those lines). Just figured I’d share that, it’s odd the similarities in symptoms and personality types among such a heterogeneous group of people like us ADD kids…

    Oh, and I’m the worst about eating, sleeping, using the restroom regularly. I ignore my body until it’s just about a medical emergency…

    And just because I can’t focus on my homework doesn’t mean I can’t play The Sims for (literally) days at a time…


    • sure, what we enjoy or is personal interest turns on our focus center, we can hyperfocus. its the stuff we’re really not interested thats the problem, especially if its “important.”
      yeah we are all different, but more alike than different. good comments


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