TotallyADD Webinar: Emotional Aspects of Getting Stuck and Unstuck with ADHD, Dr Thomas Brown
Brown says emotion is definitely part of ADHD; a lot of people in the medical community think it’s just about attention, but that’s not true.
Book: Smart but Stuck
Current criteria don’t mention emotion, but we all know how hard it is to manage emotions. Emotions play a huge role in our daily difficulties!
“The DSM does not lead the field, it follows it.”
By the time you get a group of experts to agree on something, it’s old news.
The brain assigns importance in terms of emotion.
We have trouble managing and responding to emotions.
Not enough research has been done into inertia (he calls it ignition).
“My mind is a great sprinter but it’s a lousy distance runner.”
It’s not just willpower.
New working definition of ADHD: ADHD = a complex syndrome of developmental impairments of executive functions, the self-management system of the brain, a system of mostly unconscious operations of the brain. These systems are… ** (I missed the rest of this, it went by too quickly.)
How does emotion interfere with executive functioning?
Most people know part of what they feel but there are other parts they don’t show to others and some that they don’t even recognize themselves.
Efforts to teach us how to use executive functions are a waste of time because we know what to do, we just can’t do it.
“Nobody knows what they’re thinking and for us it’s worse because we’re already on to the next thought.”
Perfectionism may be a form of OCD.
When you can’t get started, is there perhaps a reason why you might not actually want to do the thing?
Sometimes avoidance is a sensible strategy.
We do people a disservice by telling them that they can do whatever they want to do. It’s a tricky balance to be encouraging without giving false hope.
Executive functions are very difficult for us to do, and people want to teach us to do them consistently or whatever, but repeatedly giving the same instructions isn’t going to get the desired result.
Medicine is not the only thing you need.
End up with anxiety because of hypervigilance.
Poor working memory means the only emotion that is real is the one we feel in the moment.
Need at least one person who believes in us.