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Frank's an ex-TV writer, now sandwich-generation ADHD homemaker with a wife, two kids, a dog, and an eighty-something mother-in-law in a house that won’t stay clean. He writes here to try to figure out what’s going on there.

posted: Wednesday February 1st - 12:25pm

“Your ADHD Is Not a Label, Man. It’s a Fact. Don’t Waste Time Denying What’s Real”

When my friend said this, my perspective did a flip-flop. I realized that there is great power in acceptance.

A man having public speaking anxiety
“I just want to say I’m grateful that this happened, not this now, but I’m grateful to be invited here for sure. Very grateful to everybody… everybody here. Really. But what I mean was back then, you know when… uh…” I clear my throat, the microphone is slippery. I switch hands wiping the other on my jeans. This riser that the four of us who are meant...
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posted: Monday December 12th - 11:56am

After-Effects of the Anxiety Weasel at the Wheel

I’m always on guard for anxiety attacks, but they sneak up on me anyway.

Recovering From a Panic Attack: My Story
In the last post, I described recovering from an unusually severe panic attack I had a while ago on a business trip I took to New York. I’d gotten lost the first night in Manhattan on my way to a dinner at an art gallery in Chelsea, and pretty much freaked out. With the overwhelm, confusion, and fear reaching the red zone, I had to hit...
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posted: Wednesday November 23rd - 10:00am

Lost in the Dark City of Panic Attack

The anxiety weasel in my chest gets ahold of me and whispers baseless lies in my ears.

Getting Through a Panic Attack: My Story
“Where the hell am I?” I stop on the sidewalk and look down at Google Maps on my smartphone. The little pulsing blue dot that’s me is all by itself in the middle of a huge grid of white rectangles and gray lines. No thick blue line, no arrow pointing my way. I am in stunned disbelief that my electronic lifeline has failed, and I look...
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posted: Tuesday September 13th - 10:45am

It Takes a Village for ADHDers to Make It

We ADHDers are part of a great community, so let’s support each other and move forward together.

ADHD Community: Finding My Village of Support
I’ve been rereading old posts as my wife Margaret and I compile the material for an “ADHD Dad” book we’re publishing early next year, and I discovered something: When I started writing the blog seven years ago, I thought of “ADHD Dad” as a diary – a way of talking to myself in public. I figured my mental health story was unique and people would find...
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posted: Thursday July 28th - 9:30am

Look Everyone! I’m Over My Depression! Not!

I gave up my depression pills, until I caught myself slipping into old habits.

Going Off Antidepressants Was a Bad Idea (For Me)
Seven a.m. My cell phone starts the doodle-le-do gentle wake-up cycles. I grab it and swipe at the screen over and over to move the circled red X before the alarm goes to circus music and then to the ringing that never ends. Sit up, feet over the bed. So far so good with today’s depression double check. I’m back on antidepressants again after swearing them off...
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posted: Monday May 16th - 1:12pm

My Foolhardy Fix for Depression: Deny It

I have ADHD, anxiety, and, yes, depression. Now it’s time to man up to do something about my so-called sack of sorrow.

Denying the Signs of My Depression and Anxiety
My psychologist, Chris, flips through pages of a thick folder on his lap. I stare outside through his office’s white plantation blinds. The morning sun pops off an oak tree’s new leaves. Chris finds what he’s looking for in the folder. “So, a few months ago, Dr. E notes here in your chart that your depression is in remission…” Behind the tree, the Georgia sky shines bright blue...
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posted: Tuesday April 12th - 11:42am

Truth: Nobody Can Handle the ADHD Hurricanes in Your Head Alone

It takes my wife Margaret to help me ride out my emotional storms that rage all year long.

There’s a Hurricane in My Head: My ADHD Brain
After so many years of being so wrong for so long about so many things, ADHD adults don’t trust anything their brains say. This is true if you are undiagnosed and desperate, hunting for a handhold through flying shards of forgotten ideas, names, dates, and blown opportunities. And it’s still true if you’ve been diagnosed for decades, work with your therapist, take meds, meditate, and whether...
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posted: Friday September 25th - 10:41am

The Pale Kid by the Coke Machine

My daughter, Coco, diagnosed with ADHD, rises to the occasion, and makes my wife and me smile.

ADHD and Anxiety: Overcoming and Rising to the Challenge
In drizzling December rain on the shoulder of I-85 South in North Carolina, a Good Samaritan stops behind our overloaded minivan to help my wife, daughter, and me with a blow-out. The rolling hydraulic jack he pulls out of the trunk of his Oldsmobile makes quick work of getting the blown tire switched to the tiny donut spare. The guy, Mike, won’t take the $20 I...
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posted: Tuesday July 21st - 9:30am

ADHD Road Trip, Part 3: Stay Calm and Breathe

We’re almost home, but what would be an ADHD road trip without several bumps a couple of potholes.

Staying Calm and Managing Anxiety During Crises with ADHD
On and on, she just keeps on trying, And she smiles when she feels like crying, On and on, on and on, on and on. – Stephen Bishop Thump. Thump thump. Thump thump thump. “Dad, that sound. Hear that? There’s something wrong with the car!” yells my teenage daughter from the far back seat. “Don’t hear anything, car’s fine,” I say. “Try not to worry so much.” I do...
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posted: Wednesday June 3rd - 2:57pm

Procrastination, Hyperfocus—And Oh, Yes, a Story

I thought I had both under control, but I don’t. That’s why this story is so late.

Hyperfocus, Safe Driving, and ADHD
This is the fourth and, I swear, the last of this series of posts covering my family’s 2013 Christmas road trip from Georgia to Delaware and back. I also swear on a stack of diplomas of all the therapists I’ve ever had that I’m never doing a multi-part blog post again. It’s torture for all of us. I don’t know why I started chopping a story...
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