Rosemary’s Story

I am a 51 year old woman who went undiagnosed for 49 years. First as a child I struggled with Math, I was a bright child so everything else came very easily. High school was ok but I always felt like I was the odd girl out. I never really felt I belonged any where.

College was a different experience,I started taking a nursing major but I could not memorize the Anatomy and physiology and flunked out.
I moved into social work and found my place in the world.I thrived, I sailed thru the class work with the exception of 1 class statistics. In order to do well I needed to memorize, could not do it. I think the prof felt sorry for me and gave me a D.

I then moved to the Midwest from Boston as a Jesuit volunteer (Catholic Peace Corps) and began my career in social work. My frustrations at work included organization , forgetfulness, deadlines. As I got promoted I dreaded the accompanying paperwork. I was always behind. I worked in domestic violence for 18 years, headed up a psychiatric team and now run a program for Children Exposed to Violence.

I am fine with my families that I see I believe I am a good therapist but I forget notes, I lose papers,I forget supervision with staff, this very day I was confused and mixed up a meeting with the police chief.I cannot tell you how discouraged with myself I get. I feel like such a failure when I cannot keep all the balls in the air straight. Or to be thought of as unreliable or a flake.

When I was diagnosed, I began reading everything I could about ADD, began receiving ADDitude, and followed the advice that I gained from those sources.I still screw up such as today but not as often since I have been on medication. I think clearer I am more focused and have less dread about completing hard task.

Sometimes I wonder if I had not had ADD would I be able to empathize with staff members and the children I serve who suffer with it. I have come to believe that the ADD was a gift as it has helped me to understand the complexities of life in a family when ADD is diagnosed in a child.