The symptoms listed here are often more complicated in women vs. men, and in adults vs. children. Here is a partial list for adult women who may be suffering from ADD of some "real life" scenarios to watch out for:
-Do you find your mind wandering at inappropriate times, such as when someone you love is telling a story? Has your partner noticed this, or shown frustration with you "not listening" or interrupting?
-Is it difficult for you to achieve orgasm because you are frequently distracted by other thoughts during sex? Has this caused intimacy issues with your partner?
-Do you frequently lose or misplace important things? Do you rely rigidly on systems to keep some semblance of organization? Do you spend more money than normal on devices, caddies, and containers to organize your home, office, car, purse, etc, only to continue losing things?
-How do you make decisions? Do you procrastinate on difficult decisions until they become urgent? Do you make some decisions impulsively and then spend weeks/months/years making up for your poor judgement?
-How is your mood affected by your environment? Do you become more irritable when your clothes are scratchy, or when you're sitting in a disorganized room full of clutter?
-Do you find yourself lashing out at strangers/family/friends because you feel overwhelmed or frustrated by everyday situations (like waiting in a long line, getting stuck in traffic, or losing an important file at home or on your computer)?
-Do you find yourself telling "white" lies to hide your sense of incompetence as an employee/wife/mother/friend? Are you frequently making excuses for being late or forgetting to do something you said you would do?
-Does your life frequently feel unmanageable, overwhelming, or out of control? Has anyone ever commented that you seem to thrive on chaos, or that you might be a "drama queen"?
-Have you made poor financial decisions that have led to significant debt or lower than expected standard of living? Do you have a difficult time living with or developing a budget, balancing your checkbook, or paying bills on time? Do these tasks seem overwhelming to you?
-At work, do you feel overqualified for your current position? Do you have a hard time being consistent in your work? Does your productivity increase noticeably in relation to your interest in a particular work assignment, and decrease if you are not particularly interested? Has your boss ever talked to you about being late, being unorganized, or spacing out or fidgeting during meetings?
-Think back to a time when you were witness to someone being injured or involved in an accident. Were you one of the first people to respond to the injured person? Were you surprised at how long it took others to react and help the victim?
-What is the current state of your home? Is it completely disorganized, cluttered, and messy? Does it appear orderly on the surface, but every closet is literally bursting with clutter? Do you ever have anxiety about the appearance of your home or your failure to complete projects?
-Have you sought counseling or mental health evaluations and been diagnosed with depression, anxiety, mania, or another disorder? (Many of these are comorbid with ADD, they are also frequently misdiagnosed in people with ADD)
-Do your children, siblings, or parents have any of these symptoms or a diagnosis of ADD?
-Other important symptoms to consider: Many women with ADD were shy in school, daydreamed frequently, observed more than they participated, and felt inferior to their peers. As women with ADD mature, they are more likely to be involved in car accidents, more likely to experience a teen pregnancy, and more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol because of impulsive decision making.
I am not a doctor, just someone with ADD that wished I knew these symptoms years ago so I could have gotten help earlier. Please talk to your doctor if this sounds familiar.
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