Guest Blogs

“What Does ADHD Feel Like to You?”

In this fun video, children with ADHD describe what it feels like living in their distracted, speedy, and creative brains.

“Your brain is like a Ferrari race-car engine; it is very powerful. But there is one problem: You have bicycle brakes.”

This is how Dr. Ned Hallowell describes ADHD to his youngest patients, and it’s one of our favorite analogies. But it turns out that no two people experience ADHD in exactly the same way, so what feels to you like a car radio on perpetual Seek mode might feel to me like a bubble machine at warp speed or a pack of crazed squirrels.

Exploring and comparing perspective such as these is a good way to explain an occasionally confusing condition to someone who is unfamiliar, or to encourage those with ADHD — particularly children — to look inward and reflect on their most challenging symptoms.

Cristina Margolis, of My Little Villagers, has done just that with the video below. She asked children with ADHD — ranging in age from 6 to 10 — to briefly describe what it feels like to have ADHD. The answers vary between the silly (“My brain and body are like a chariot pulled by super fast unicorns!”) and the more serious (“It feels like I’m trying to hold something still — but it goes anyway”). Taken together, they’re a truthful overview of how ADHD symptoms affect day-to-day life for more than 6 million American children. Watch the video below:

How does your kid describe the feeling of having ADHD? Leave your answer in the comments below!