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Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? Stopping the Roller Coaster When Someone You Love Has Attention Deficit Disorder Paperback – August 31, 2008
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-- Alex Moore, Book Review Editor, Foreword Magazine, August 6, 2008
Gina Pera has written a stunning book that should be a must-read for all couples where one or both partners have Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Combining her own experiences, a thoughtful synthesis of the clinical and research literature, and a creative study of her own design, she has grasped the complex ways in which ADHD affects relationships and has translated her comprehensive expertise into a highly readable and extraordinarily helpful guide.
Her prose is extremely effective, at times funny and at other times poignant, and her ability to capture the subtle dynamics of partnerships affected by ADHD is nothing short of extraordinary.
What is particularly stunning about her achievement is the way Ms. Pera has captured the intricacy of ADHD, including its far-reaching effects on executive function and emotional regulation. Equally impressive is her talent for framing the issues in comprehensible language, with answers to frequently asked questions, quotes from partners with and without ADHD, and snippets of dialogues that are completely genuine.
Best of all, this book offers hope and guidance to the millions of adults whose lives have been challenged by ADHD, by providing clear and useful ideas and a richly elaborated framework for addressing the myriad stresses that ADHD imposes upon intimacy and friendship.
Kudos and thanks to Ms. Pera! I will make this book required reading for all my patients. It is nothing short of a tour de force!
-- Anthony L. Rostain, M.D., M.A., Medical Director, University of Pennsylvania Adult ADHD Treatment and Research Program; Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Most books on marriage offer insights and help to common marital problems such as the traditional conflicts around sex, money, children, time, and in-laws. They offer credible solutions such as conflict management, improved communication, and problem solving skills.
This book is different. For some couples these problems are exacerbated by the often unnoticed presence of a particular neural wiring in the brain, called Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, that makes traditional solutions ineffective. This book describes ADHD in detail and with empathy and helps couples with this added challenge find hope and solutions.
I recommend it highly to all couples whose troubles seem incomprehensible, and for all couples therapists it should be required reading to help them distinguish between ordinary conflict and the roller coaster of this syndrome.
-- Harville Hendrix, Ph.D., author of Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples and codeveloper of Imago Relationship Therapy
About the Author
She contributed the first chapter on couple therapy to Dr. Russell Barkley's clinical guide. And, she is the co-author of the first professional guide devoted to ADHD couple therapy that is based on the evidence of what works: Adult ADHD-Focused Couple Therapy: Clinical Interventions (Routledge, 2016). In her previous career as a print journalist, her work producing special issues for USA Weekend won the prestigious Best Magazine Edition award from The Association for Women in Communications and a Unity Award in Media, recognizing accurate exposure of issues affecting minorities and disabled persons. GinaPera.com She writes the award-winning blog ADHDRollerCoaster.org
Top Customer Reviews
It's the best balance of real-world anecdotes, situations, issues that ADHD'ers (and those who know ADHD'ers) face, science, and practical solutions, as well as many insights into ADHD that I've seen no where else.
Even though I have ADHD, have read so many books about it, and even regularly attend an ADHD support group, I had at least a half dozen "ah-ha" moments within the first few chapters. I learned about things that I had no idea were related to ADHD. It was really an eye-opener and has helped me live that much better now that I understand why and how it's related to my ADHD.
To me the book is also very practical and real world. It tells it like it is with no sugar coating--both the good and the bad. There's a trend in some ADHD circles to try to paint ADHD as a "gift". Take it from me, having ADHD sucks, it's not a gift. Of course we want to be rid of the stigmas and discrimination (both by people and by the insurance industry) but trying to spin ADHD as a gift just goes too far into la-la-land in my opinion. This book doesn't do that. It talks about what ADHD is, how it effects those who have it, and those who have to deal with those who have it. As I said, very real world, practical, and helpful.
Denial is one major thing this book talks about that I don't recall reading about before. Yes, many of us with ADHD deny we have it, or even if we admit we have it, we think we're doing fine without treatment. These are both unfortunate situations which can have bad if not dire consequences.Read more ›
As a 43 year old women with ADD who was married to a man with untreated ADD, the book rang so true and touched upon so many of our struggles that it was, at times, disorienting to read them detailed in the pages of a book written by an author who did not know my story. Often, I could only read a few pages before needing to take a break and let the enormity of the suffering and needless pain that ADHD causes in adult relationships to sink in.
For too many of us, the real tragedy comes from having seen expert couple therapists for years desperately trying to make our relationships work, while the good will, intimacy and benefit of the doubt was drained out of the marriage as each new round of therapy failed, all the while, never being offered the information provided in this book that could have put us on the path to understanding.
Gina Pera lays out the necessary truth about the impact of adult ADD on relationships and provides a framework to view the issues not as insurmountable, but rather as typical for our population and, in fact, manageable with the right treatment for ADD.
I urge all couples with children who have AD/HD to read this book. Because research tells us that this disorder is genetic, you and your partner may be affected by AD/HD without knowing it and your relationship may be needlessly imperiled. You may save your marriage by discovering how ADD plays itself out in relationships and learning how to address those issues in your own home.Read more ›
Finally, a book written for non-ADHD partners. The author spent 8 years researching ADHD, and this text is clearly a masterpiece of her great efforts. The book is filled with examples, tips, and resources like no other book offers to date.
Most books on the market are written for a person with ADHD, and not chiefly for partners thereof. Perhaps there should be more support groups available, such as, ADD/ADHD Anonymous. Dr. Schwartz offers good help online at mentalhelp.net; however, there are limits. In fact, this is where the author was found [on Dr.Schwartz's article/comment page].
The book was received today, and there was so much to read AND highlight. The text offers a great "peace of mind," helps one realize the truth, without blaming one's self, and helps to comprehend the complexity of ADHD symptoms. Readers are reminded not to blame the person, but rather to understand or manage the "symptom," as Dr.Amen suggests.
There are stories from lives of others that clarify multiple topics, which also projects what non-ADHD partners are facing because others, including friends or family, may rarely understand. The best part is the included "Tip Sheets" to help manage, cope, and/or not take the termed ADHD-bait.
If your partner has ADD/ADHD, whether it is diagnosed or not, this text is highly recommended. As one reviewer noted, "Sure to become the authoritative guide..." Also, as reflected by the diagnosis, some ADHD'ers exhibit strong symptoms of denial, including remorse or blame when others [or their partner] attempts to discuss the illness.
Warning: Anger, and other unnecessary conflicts may occur as a result of having this text or others present.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a must-read for anyone who suspects that they know someone who may have adult ADHD. My husband stumbled across this book while on vacation and he couldn't put it down. Read morePublished 21 days ago by Vicki K.
I read about halfway through the book before wondering why I was so much angrier with my husband who has undiagnosed ADHD than I was before starting it! Read morePublished 1 month ago by LCL
This is a fantastic book and have recommended it to friends. I even sent a copy as a gift. The list of resources is exceptional.Published 2 months ago by Carolyn
I think the book is very helpful, especially when you are in a relationship with someone with ADD. It confirms my understanding and how it affects both sides. Read morePublished 3 months ago by jill
This book is not a bible for adults with ADD. Unlike "Driven To Distraction" which is a book that is a tremendous help for individuals to understand the problems, I feel... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Charles Mixter
This helped me, the person afflicted with ADHD as an adult, make since of how my husband sees me and my actions and habits. It wasfun to read aloud to him as well. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Lyla Moody