Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? Stopping the Roller Coaster When Someone You Love Has Attention Deficit Disorder

Winner of four national book awards, including Foreword Magazine’s Psychology Book of the Year! The science has been clear since 1994, when Adult AD/HD was declared a medical diagnosis. Still, the public harbors misconceptions, and that means millions suffer needlessly. And that includes millions of couples who can’t understand why their lives together are so hard — sometimes despite many attempts at couples therapy. Everyone knows someone with adult AD/HD. Yet we misattribute the symptoms to anxiety, depression, or even laziness, selfishness, or moodiness. Moreover, we assume AD/HD means “little boys with ants in their pants.” In fact, childhood hyperactivity goes “underground” as the person matures, resulting in a mentally restless state. (By the way, the former, and still better-known, official term is ADD, plus or minus Hyperactivity. The new term, AD/HD, uses a slash mark to indicate that hyperactivity is not central to the diagnosis.) Meticulously researched by award-winning journalist Gina Pera, Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? is a comprehensive guide to recognizing the behaviors where you least expect them (on the road and in the bedroom, for example) and developing compassion for couples wrestling with unrecognized ADHD symptoms. It also offers the latest information from top experts, plenty of real-life details, and easy-to-understand guidelines for finding the best treatment options and practical solutions. The revolutionary message is one of hope for millions of people–and a joyous opportunity for a better life.

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Review

USA Weekend contributor and ADHD researcher presents information on how to help and cope; chapters include Psychological Denial, Treatment Results that Last, and Driving While Distracted, which includes Denise’s story of when her husband slammed into a moose at fifty mph because he was playing with the radio, fussing with the cell phone, adjusting the heat.

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

Insightful, helpful, witty, and very practical. This book can change your life.
Daniel G. Amen, M.D., author of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life

… contains information that is just not available anywhere else. This book is sure to become the authoritative guide for couples dealing with ADD.
Patricia O. Quinn, M.D., Director, The National Center for Girls and Women with ADHD

…We expect this book will be the bible for all of us dealing with adult ADD.
Elizabeth Weathers and Diane Hartson, moderators, ADD Spouse support group

… I can safely predict it will become as much an ‘industry standard’ as Driven to Distraction.
David Edelberg, M.D., Medical Director, WholeHealth Chicago

… The book is well researched, reader friendly, and includes insights and perspectives from a Who’s Who of professionals. For couples struggling with ADHD, it’s the season’s new must-have book and bound to become a classic.
Michele Novotni, Ph.D. Psychologist, Coach

Confirmatory brain neuroscience answers this speculation about Adult ADHD: It s a real problem with real and painful challenges, not a belief system.
Charles Parker, DO, Medical Director, CorePsych, author of Deep Recovery

… Gina Pera has combined a real feel for the disorder with sound reporting skills and the spice of those who tell the story best: the couples themselves.
Margaret D. Weiss, M.D., Ph.D., Head, Provincial ADHD Program, British Columbia, Canada

… Gina Pera has been there and has authored a guide that offers understanding for the confused, practical strategies for the frustrated, and hope for the despondent. This book will be a lifesaver for both partners.
Ari Tuckman, Psy.D., M.B.A., author of Integrative Treatment for Adult ADHD

About the Author

Gina Pera is internationally known as a expert in Adult ADHD, especially as it affects relationships. She is also a powerful advocate for greater awareness and more effective treatment standards.

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

Winner of four national book awards, including Foreword Magazine’s Psychology Book of the Year! The science has been clear since 1994, when Adult AD/HD was declared a medical diagnosis. Still, the public harbors misconceptions, and that means millions suffer needlessly. And that includes millions of couples who can’t understand why their lives together are so hard — sometimes despite many attempts at couples therapy. Everyone knows someone with adult AD/HD. Yet we misattribute the symptoms to anxiety, depression, or even laziness, selfishness, or moodiness. Moreover, we assume AD/HD means “little boys with ants in their pants.” In fact, childhood hyperactivity goes “underground” as the person matures, resulting in a mentally restless state. (By the way, the former, and still better-known, official term is ADD, plus or minus Hyperactivity. The new term, AD/HD, uses a slash mark to indicate that hyperactivity is not central to the diagnosis.) Meticulously researched by award-winning journalist Gina Pera, Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? is a comprehensive guide to recognizing the behaviors where you least expect them (on the road and in the bedroom, for example) and developing compassion for couples wrestling with unrecognized ADHD symptoms. It also offers the latest information from top experts, plenty of real-life details, and easy-to-understand guidelines for finding the best treatment options and practical solutions. The revolutionary message is one of hope for millions of people–and a joyous opportunity for a better life.

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