web analytics
December 20, 2014 / 28 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



ADHD And Women: The Hidden Disorder

Schonfeld-logo1

Picture this: A child is jumping around the room, arms flailing, and interrupting the teacher.

Was the child you pictured male or female?

Chances are, you imagined a boy.

Why? For many years Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) has been diagnosed as a predominantly male syndrome. While it’s true that the majority of those suffering from ADHD are male, there are a surprising amount of women who deal with ADHD. According to one study at Harvard University, about forty percent of those with ADHD are women, however, many women are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.

 

Symptoms: Boys and Girls

Many psychologists and educators theorize that girls are less likely to be diagnosed with ADHD because their symptoms differ greatly from those of boys. Whereas many boys with ADHD are running around and causing disruptions in the classroom, many girls with ADHD are simply staring straight ahead at the teacher but have no idea what is being said. These girls under-function throughout elementary school, even though they are bright. Many do not receive a diagnosis and simply believe that they are “not good at school.”

Many girls with ADHD are often labeled as “chatty,” and can constantly tell animated stories to their friends. Alternatively, they might be thought of as “daydreamers,” intelligent, but shy.  “Girls with ADHD remain an enigma–often overlooked, misunderstood and hotly debated,” says Ellen Littman, PhD, one of the first psychologists and researchers to focus on gender differences in ADHD and to advocate for a reexamination of how the disorder is defined.

So, what happens when these girls finish school without a diagnosis? What does it mean to be a woman living with ADHD?

 

ADHD and the Home

In our community, whether or not they have a career, women are solely responsible for planning many aspects of home life. On a typical day, a woman needs to keep track of her children’s after school activities and playdates, the grocery list, the dinner menu, and do the laundry. Keeping tabs on all of these different moving pieces can be overwhelming for anyone, let alone for a woman suffering from undiagnosed ADHD. For many, these tasks seem impossible as they consistently fail to maintain order. As a consequence, their self-esteem suffers because they feel that their failure is a reflection on their capabilities.

 

The Mommy Link

Many women who come to see me do not realize they have ADHD until they bring a child in for an evaluation. On occasion, after the child is tested, a mother will ask to speak to me without her child present. Often she will explain that through her child’s testing, she realized that she shares many of the same symptoms. It is only then that she realizes that perhaps her inability to keep track of all the different elements of her complex life has nothing to do with her intentions and everything to do with ADHD. Together, we then work out a plan to aid her in combating the disorder and adding some order to her life.

 

For women, there are many issues that coincide with undiagnosed ADHD:

Anxiety and depression. Many women experience anxiety or depression as a result of ADHD. They do not understand why they cannot just concentrate and function the way the rest of the world seems to. This deflated sense of self is often linked to anxiety or depression.

Obesity and eating disorders. Research has correlated women with ADHD and a higher chance of being overweight or having an eating disorder. Since organization is used to plan a healthy diet and make time to exercise regularly, women with undiagnosed ADHD tend to grab quick meals or look to food to provide comfort from their other symptoms.

Addictions. Both men and women with ADHD are at a higher risk for harmful addictions such as substance abuse or gambling. This is because those with ADHD have weaker impulse control and therefore have more trouble stopping from engaging in this addictive activity.

 

Prevention and Treatment

Early intervention is the best way to avoid these coinciding problems for girls with ADHD, which is why getting a diagnosis is key. However, if as you are reading this article, many of these issues feel a little too close to home, just know that it is not too late to organize and classify all those overwhelming, stressful tasks. Diagnosis is the first step in process. Who knows, perhaps in a few months you will have figured out how to do a load of laundry, cook dinner, review homework, return phone calls, and plan a birthday party. But, maybe that’s asking too much of the modern mother! That’s a thought for another article…

About the Author: An acclaimed educator and education consultant, Mrs. Rifka Schonfeld has served the Jewish community for close to thirty years. She founded and directs the widely acclaimed educational program, SOS, servicing all grade levels in secular as well as Hebrew studies. A kriah and reading specialist, she has given dynamic workshops and has set up reading labs in many schools. In addition, she offers evaluations G.E.D. preparation,, social skills training and shidduch coaching, focusing on building self-esteem and self-awareness. She can be reached at 718-382-5437 or at rifkaschonfeld@verizon.net. Visit her on the web at rifkaschonfeldsos.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

One Response to “ADHD And Women: The Hidden Disorder”

  1. I am so energized to read articles such as these. We are using play attention which is based on brainwave technology with total success with our five year old. I agree early diagnosis is the key and we also believe that the alternative to medication is the way to go!

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Posted to Twitter in Ferguson, MO by St. Louis County Police: "Bricks thrown at police, 2 police cars burned, gun seized by police. Tonight was disappointing."  Their motto is, "To protect and serve."
Prosecutor in Ferguson Case: ‘Witnesses Lied Under Oath’
Latest Sections Stories
Games-121914

Here are examples of games that need to be played by more than one person and an added bonus: they’re all Shabbos-friendly.

South-Florida-logo

The incident was completely unforeseeable. The only term to describe the set of circumstances surrounding it is “freak occurrence.”

South-Florida-logo

The first Chabad Center in Broward County, Chabad of South Broward, now runs nearly fifty programs and agencies. T

The NHS was also honored to have Bob Diener as keynote speaker.

Written with flowing language and engaging style, Attar weaves a spell that combines mystery, humor, adventure and Kabbalah in the most magical place in the world, the Old City of erusalem.

There are those who highlight the diversity of these different teachings, seeing each rebbe as teaching a separate path.

Rav Dynovisz will be speaking in Hebrew on Wednesday, January 7, at 7:30 p.m.

Rabbi Simeon Schreiber, senior chaplain at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, saw a small room in the hospital that was dark and dismal but could be used for Sabbath guests.

“The secret to a good donut is using quality ingredients and the ability to be patient and give them time to proof.”

I so desperately want to have a loving relationship with my stepsons.

The Liberty Bell is a symbol of American Independence.

Because you can’t have kids pouring huge jugs of oil into tiny glasses, unless you want to turn your house into an environmental disaster.

Try these with your kids; there’s something for every age group and once all the recipes are made, dinner will be ready!

You children will build the country and you will help restore Israel to her former glory.

More Articles from Rifka Schonfeld
Schonfeld-logo1

Children develop at different rates – they say their first words, take their first steps, toilet train, read their first word, and lose their first tooth at different times.

Schonfeld-112814

Once you understand why you are lying, you might be better able to tell the truth.

This core idea of memory is very difficult to fully comprehend; however, it is essential.

Do you love your children? Of course, who doesn’t? Maybe I should rephrase the question: Do your children feel that you love them?

“Without a high school diploma, you couldn’t work as a garbage collector in New York City; you couldn’t join the Air Force. Yet a quarter of our kids still walked out of high school and never came back.”
– Amanda Ridley

Avromi often put other people’s interests before his own: he would not defend people whom he believed were guilty (even if they were willing to pay him a lot of money).

Social disabilities occur at many levels, but experts identify three different areas of learning and behavior that are most common for children who struggle to create lasting social connections.

Brown argues that this wholehearted living must extend into our parenting.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/parenting-our-children/adhd-and-women-the-hidden-disorder/2013/10/25/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: