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ADD and Your Money: A Guide to Personal Finance for Adults With Attention Deficit Disorder Paperback – December 2, 2009
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"ADD in adults is turning out to be among the most impairing disorders seen in outpatient mental health clinics in terms of the number of major life activities that it adversely affects and the severity with which it impacts each of them. One such domain is that of money management. In this first-ever book devoted to the impact of adult ADD on one’s financial life, the authors do a masterful job of both providing a review of the most common problem areas adults with ADD are likely to experience as well as a richly detailed set of recommendations for how best to try and resolve those problems. The book will be of tremendous benefit to not only adults with ADD, but their spouses/partners, parents or other family members, and clinicians who routinely specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of ADD in adults."
Russell A. Barkley, PhD, clinical professor of psychiatry at Medical University of South Carolina and research professor of psychiatry at SUNY Upstate Medical University
"The guidelines and inventories in this self-help manual can enable people with ADD to make the most of their treatment. While medicine improves core symptom problems, these financial management skills can further reduce ADD consequences and impairments."
Richard L. Rubin, MD, director of Vermont Clinical Study Center and adjunct associate professor at Dartmouth Medical College
From the Publisher
ADD and Your Money is a comprehensive, accessible guide to money management for adults with attention deficit disorder (ADD). Coauthored by Stephanie Moulton Sarkis, an ADD coach, and Karl Klein, a financial and legal expert, this book helps readers reduce impulsive spending, keep track of finances, and plan for the future.
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I was quite disappointed in this book. It promised new approaches and ideas on money management for ADD sufferers, but instead it gave a rehashing of basic money management (i.e. the benefits of creating a budget, etc.) One area that it seemed to address well was how to handle money in a relationship with someone who has ADD...but that's at best only a small portion of what this book is being offered as. I also felt that the general tone of this book was condescending. People with ADD are typically above the curve on intelligence, but this book came off as if it was talking to a population that needed everything spoon-fed to them.
In her book, Dr. Sarkis points out Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) is a genetic disorder which affects over 4% of the U.S. population. Symptoms include disorganization, difficulty focusing and following through with tasks, and avoiding tasks which require considerable mental effort. What I find interesting is while we often hear about the challenges posed by ADD to students and learning, it is rare to hear about ADD in relation to money management.
Dr. Sarkis points out such challenges are significant: People with ADD tend to earn less money than those without ADD, even with a similar education level. They are more likely to take risks that lead to a loss of money; and they have higher medical expenses. The first step to addressing any problem is to be aware of it, and in the first part of the book, we learn why ADD poses such a challenge in terms of personal finance.
In the second part of the book, Dr. Sarkis and Karl Klein provide a comprehensive financial guide to personal money management, covering such topics as Investing, Organizing Your Money, Spending, Loans and Debt, Bank Services, and Talking to Your Kids About Money. (Dr. Sarkis believes that much a person's behavior with money is based on how their parents handled money when they were a child).
Dr. Sarkis has an interesting suggestion: since individuals with ADD tend to be competitive, she recommends approaching money management as though it were a game. There is also lots of great practical advice. One of my favorites was her recommendation to evaluate clothing purchases on a "cost per wear basis." She also discusses the importance of planning for emergencies, paying off debts, and avoiding status spending and gambling.
I found this book to be valuable in terms of gaining an understanding of the challenges ADD presents to the individual's money managment, and as an in-depth and practical financial handbook tailored to those with ADD.
I found the book to be useful and simplistic to the point that I didn't feel information overload when reading it. Each chapter discussed was straight forward and to the point of how to see things and what I need to do to get myself on track financially. The book doesn't take long to read which is a plus for me with my busy lifestyle. I also appreciate this book that its helped with my guilt that I can learn how to manage my money.
I would also suggest to anyone that has adult ADD/ADHD and has difficulty managing money to take the course Financial Peace with Dave Ramsey. In conjunction with this course and Dr. Sarkis book I feel I'm on the right track. Cut up all credit cards and use cash. Don't use debit cards unless its an emergency. If our previous generations could survive without them so we can we.
I agree with the other reviews stating that it's condesending if I read "ADHD people like to impulsively spend" even before getting to any kind of externalization system to help us manage it I would die happy.