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Support group for adults with ADHD to begin meeting May 11

NEW HAVEN — A support group for adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, better known as ADHD, is forming. It will hold its first meeting on Thursday, May 11, from 6-30-8:30 p.m., in New Haven at 87 Rivers Bend Road (the Sapphire Center building).
Adults with ADHD or those close to someone with ADHD are welcome to attend.
At this first meeting, participants will watch an amusing video created by Canadian comedians Rick Green and Patrick McKenna, “ADD and Mastering It.” This sequel to “ADD and Loving It” presents strategies for dealing with the everyday challenges of ADHD (also known as ADD). After the film, there will be a discussion and opportunity to ask questions of Debbie Tracht, ADHD coach and consultant.
ADHD is a misunderstood brain-based condition. When most of us hear the term ADHD, we think of a young boy bouncing off walls. Although this description accurately describes some with ADHD, scientific research in the past 25 years has given us a broader picture, one that informs us of variation in those with ADHD, ranging from hyperactivity on one end of the spectrum to those who consistently daydream on the other. Science confirms that ADHD, a brain-based disorder, not only affects boys but girls as well, and adults. Often it goes unrecognized in these groups.
A common misconception about ADHD is that only children have it. The truth is that 60-75 percent of children with ADHD continue to be affected by this condition as adults. A majority of adults with ADHD are unaware that they have this common brain difference. When many of today’s adults were young, only young boys who were jumping out of their seats received a diagnosis of ADHD. Since it is hereditary, many adults recognize the symptoms that they struggled with as children when they complete ADHD screening forms given to them by their child’s school or pediatrician.
A diagnosis of ADHD is not all doom and gloom — in fact it can turn around a pattern of failure. A recognition that one has it can be a great relief, providing an explanation for the difficulties they’ve been having — they can begin to accept that they are not bad, or dumb or lazy or a flake. People with ADHD have different wiring in their brains. And, they have different strengths and weaknesses. Although ADHD can present challenges such as difficulty focusing, organizing and managing time, people with ADHD are often creative, big-picture thinkers, good problem solvers, and sometimes hysterically funny.
There are a number of simple strategies for improving functioning for those with ADHD. Attending a support group provides a safe forum in which to learn how ADHD may be affecting their lives and hear tips and strategies that may help others. Some strategies that help with ADHD symptoms are exercise, mindfulness, medication and ADHD coaching. In a lecture author Jonathan Mooney, a Brown University graduate who struggled with ADHD and dyslexia his entire life, shared his creative solution with one of his challenges. Mooney said he practiced “strategic marriage” and married his spellchecker. Although this solution is not always practical, it was certainly creative. For the rest of us, however, learning about our strengths and challenges, and how we can manage them, can change our lives.
For more information about the new support group, visit www.middleburycenter.com, call or email Debbie Tracht at 349-7222 or dstracht@gmail.com. Space is limited, so please RSVP. 

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