When we think of the stereotypical person with ADHD, we often think of a hyperactive boy. That is the description of one segment of the ADHD population but did you know that ADHD affects males and females at equal ratios? I ran across some interesting statistics that show the ratio of boys to girls with ADHD is 3:1 but the ratio of adult men to women with ADHD is 1:1. The boys are not "outgrowing" their ADHD. It's just that males are diagnosed in childhood at a much higher rate because their symptoms tend to be more noticeable.
The adult female clients I see in my coaching practice share many of the same feelings of shame, over-whelm, anxiety and depression. This month, I want to address the female population that struggles with ADHD/ADD.
1. Women are often initially diagnosed and treated for depression and anxiety sometimes missing the ADHD diagnosis. By the time they are diagnosed, they have been struggling for years.
2. Females with ADHD tend to be forgetful, disorganized, have trouble planning and prioritizing. Males tend to be more impulsive and hyperactive.
3. Our culture encourages girls to be "people pleasers" therefore they may suffer silently and develop a perfectionistic personality to compensate. These girls may make high grades but at the expense of much emotional turmoil.
4. Females are often not diagnosed until adulthood because they don't exhibit hyperactive and impulsive symptoms.
5. Females with ADHD tend to have more mood disorders such as depression and anxiety compared to males with ADHD.