ADD,ADHD,Stigma, and Coming Out — ADD Tip o the Day 371

Some people with ADD or ADHD have commented on being ashamed or embarrassed,  or afraid to openly acknowledge the problem.  I cannot criticize them because I do not know their circumstances.

I have ADD, which I am not ashamed of anymore than I am ashamed of being bald (OK, I’m occasionally embarrassed about that.)  I’d be willing to do without either, but neither are my fault.  I am sometimes embarrassed by my behavior/symptoms, but not by my diagnosis.

My son Duane had ADHD and learning disabilities.  He was gay, and he died of AIDS before there was any effective treatment.  After he was diagnosed, he went to schools and gave talks teaching kids how to avoid getting AIDS.  He sometimes wore a T shirt saying, “That’s MR. Faggot to you.”

Duane was very brave, and I was very proud of him.

Prejudice and bigotry are born of ignorance, inadequacy  and insecurity (sometimes well deserved.)   It can be changed.  There was a time when it was a stigma to have -whisper, whisper – diabetes.

One of the antidotes to stigma is for us to come out.  Then we are known as individuals, rather than as “them”.

May God bless us all,



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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4 Responses to ADD,ADHD,Stigma, and Coming Out — ADD Tip o the Day 371

  1. Pingback: Distractions | Living Daily With Adult ADD or ADHD

  2. peter, thank you for the kind words. we have a grandson with aspergers. like duane, he had a rough childhood, but has blossomed now and is doing great.
    thank you for commenting.


  3. peter says:

    That’s very moving Doug. As the father of a son (aged 7) with slight autism I find it especially poignant. But you got through it and have helped countless people in your life. And your ADD books are truly inspiring. Thanks.


  4. Pingback: Labeling Kids ADD ADHD and Drugging Them —ADD Tip o the Day 450 | ADDadultstrategies

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