Blog Therapy: 7 Great Blogs About ADHD
Seven great ADHD blogs brimming with daily inspiration, insight, and laughs from ADD adults and parents of children with attention deficit.
Life with ADHD has its ups and downs. One day it’s smooth sailing, and the next, it’s rough seas.
That’s when you need support or a good laugh to make it through the day. Maybe you need someone who understands what you’re up against, an outlet for venting when you’re frustrated, or strategies from someone else who is struggling with the condition.
ADHD blogs offer all that — and more. They bring information, personal stories, and a way to connect with like-minded people. And blogs are tailor-made for those with short attention spans. So adults with ADHD can read entries without feeling overwhelmed, as they might feel slogging through a book.
Tara McGillicuddy, a certified ADHD coach who has the condition, blogs. She turned to the Internet, 11 years ago, when she was diagnosed with ADHD. “There wasn’t much help out there then for adults with ADHD,” says McGillicuddy. She began researching the disorder on the Web, and found a host of blogs aimed at ADDers.
When McGillicuddy launched her own blog, several years later, she thought people would like her practical coaching tips for local:”managing ADHD symptoms.” She was surprised to find that visitors gravitated, instead, to “ADD Moments” — a personal chronicle of her struggles with, and solutions to, ADHD.
“People with ADHD get relief from reading about others dealing with similar or identical problems,” says Terry Matlen, a psychotherapist specializing in adult ADHD, and author of Survival Tips for Women with AD/HD. “This often begins the healing process in the newly diagnosed, because they meet others who share their struggles.”
Matlen, who has ADHD and is the mother of a young adult with the condition, also finds comfort and hope in writing a blog. “Focused Distractions,” which appears on her website, addconsults.com, helps her make sense of her life.
Ari Tuckman, a psychologist specializing in ADHD, agrees that blogs are a good source of strategies, ideas, and resources, but he cautions that they may not help everyone. “Other people’s experiences may be very different from your own, so what worked for them may not work for you,” says Tuckman, author of Integrative Treatment for Adult ADHD. “The miraculous success stories may make you feel inferior, and the nightmare stories could scare your pants off. Blogs may also be inaccurate. Keep a healthy skepticism when reading them.” Adds Matlen: “Remember that bloggers are always free to say what they want. Don’t take everything as gospel truth.”
With these caveats in mind, we pored over hundreds of blogs written by people living with ADHD. We came up with a list of the seven most insightful and entertaining ones. Some of them are funny, angry, raw, and honest. All of them offer practical advice from people who have tried it.
Rants, raves, and idiocies from an A.D.H.D. perspective
by Kali Karagias
For adults with ADHD who believe that laughter is the best medicine, “Out of Focus” is just what the doctor ordered. Kali Karagias delivers laugh-out-loud, irreverent humor. The sample post’s tag says it all: “How to Incorporate Your Love of Tap Dancing into Your Already Overbooked Chaotic Life.” Karagias, an actress, humorist, writer, mom, and woman with ADHD, blends videos and photos with the written word in one of the funniest blogs on the Internet.
Start by reading a few of her newest posts for a taste of her sassy style. Then, click the “Attention Deficit Disorder” link under “Categories” to find posts that focus on ADHD.
“I throw dishes when I am angry. I used to blame it on being Greek, but I realize it’s a characteristic of my ADHD. Other items I have thrown include: Snapple bottles at construction workers after unnecessary catcalls; hot coffee at a random pedestrian for hissing at me; an ashtray full of loose change at a driver sticking out his tongue at me; a garbage bag full of discount eyewear flyers, as I walked into the store that had littered my neighborhood with them. Yes, I had the hyperfocus to pick all of them up.”
Life, with ADHD, Asperger’s autism, and a dog
This uncluttered, easy-to-navigate site will appeal to women with ADHD — with or without coexisting conditions, such as anxiety, mood disorders, and PTSD — mothers with ADHD, and mothers of kids with special needs, including autism and Asperger’s syndrome.
Written by Dyskinesia — or Dys, for short — the author details her struggles to cope with relationships, parenting, work, and daily life. The best entries are snippets of conversations between the writer, who has ADHD, and her autistic son:
“Do you want PB&J or pizza for lunch?”
“OK, but don’t make it so that it messes out the stickiness all over and on my fingers stuck to me not in my sandwich messy like I had to clean up last time and all gross…”
“So you’re saying PB&J, but with less jelly than last time?”
“OK, I can do that. Sorry, Mom likes more jelly on hers, so I got a little carried away.”
“Yeah. Dad knows how to make mine, so you just have to try to do it like him.”
“Maybe next time he should try to be in labor with you for 17 hours.”
“Did you say something, Mom?”
“Nope. One PB&J, light on the J, coming up!”
Overcoming ADHD & mood disorders with lots of humor and attitude
by Douglas Cootey
Douglas Cootey began blogging three years ago, to share his struggles with his own disabilities — he has ADHD, a mood disorder, chronic motor tics, and ‘rugrat’-itis (he’s the full-time parent in his family). He also wanted to connect with kindred souls. Cootey shares the humorous and serious sides of life with ADHD and comorbid conditions.
In addition to “day in the life” posts, Cootey discusses his attempts to fight off his mood disorder with cognitive behavioral therapy, after suffering serious side effects from medication.
Cootey’s intelligence will appeal to men and women, especially those with anxiety or a mood disorder, and individuals whose symptoms interfere with succeeding at the job.
“This is my philosophy on medicating ADHD, anxiety…etc.:
1. Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a fantastic alternative to medication.
2. If you need to medicate, medicate one thing at a time.
3. Be careful! Medication can have lasting side effects.
4. Always remember that pills don’t teach skills.”
A resource for those who want to learn about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Learning Disabilities (LD), and related topics
by Shane Hawk
When this stay-at-home mother’s son was diagnosed with ADHD and learning disabilities, in 2003, Hawk says, “I knew nothing about either. I immediately began reading and researching to learn everything I could. I decided to share what I had found with other parents who were facing the same issues and questions that I had. I wanted to make their search for information easier.”
In addition to traditional posts, Hawk’s blog has news, product reviews, surveys, and polls. Hawk even sells low-cost used books on ADHD and LD on her blog.
“When my son started kindergarten, I realized how far behind he was academically. His peers could all recite the alphabet and count past 10. My son could not. He has problems associating the sounds of letters with the actual letters. His handwriting was illegible. I thought something wasn’t right, but his teachers encouraged me that he would ‘catch up.’ I wish I had known then what I know now. Of course, hindsight is always 20/20, right? We, as parents, know our children better than anyone. Therefore, if you believe your child may have a learning disability, please do not hesitate to have him tested.”
The challenges of raising our ADHD son
by One Tired Mama
This blog wins points for its honesty, creativity, and ironic humor. The pseudonymous cast includes Fast Boy, an eight-year-old with ADHD; One Tired Mama, who is, well, one tired mom; The Boss Man, Dad, who also has ADHD; and Princess, Fast Boy’s five-year-old sister.
Readers will commiserate with Tired Mom as she relates Fast Boy’s ADHD shenanigans. Even though Tired Mom hasn’t posted since November 2007, she remains among the best blogger-moms on the Web.
“Dear Fast Boy,
Thank you for acting up in front of the LMHP [Licensed Mental Health Professional] today. You have done a perfect job of demonstrating the type of behavior that I have to deal with on a daily basis. Usually people look at me like I’m nuts when I tell them how tired you make me. But not today. Today, they got to see, hear, and feel what I live with.
“Your screaming, arguing, running, and confrontational, almost-aggressive behavior was a perfect example of our lives together. The fact that you still had on your pajama top and underwear at 2 o’clock in the afternoon was icing on the cake. Lucky for her, she only had to stay for two hours.
One Tired Mama”
Coaching, education, and support for women with ADHD
by Brenda Nicholson
Brenda Nicholson’s blog is polished and professional, warm and welcoming. Nicholson, who has ADHD and has raised three children with the condition, offers specific, road-tested strategies for managing daily life with ADHD. Listen to her podcasts, “Tuesday Ten Minute Tips,” raid her virtual pantry for meal-planning ideas, and try her day-planning system on this user-friendly site.
Riding in and out of the fog on the roller-coaster of life called ADHD
by Bryan Hutchinson & friends
This social networking site for adults with ADHD allows users to interact and contribute without committing to a blog of their own. Founded by Bryan Hutchinson, author of One Boy’s Struggle: Surviving Life with Undiagnosed ADD, this Web community is small-town America, with an ADHD twist. Each resident has his own Web page, and everybody chats about everything — and nothing — over the proverbial backyard fence. The “townsfolk” of ADDer World range from straight shooting and esoteric to eccentric. Everyone is welcome here.