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Talkin’ Trash: Targeting ADHD Challenges

Posted Jan 11 2013 12:00am

Oh yes it’s garbage night
And the feeling’s right
Oh yes it’s garbage night
Oh what a night (oh what a night)

People who know my husband only as a serious-minded scientist could hardly imagine, come Tuesday trash-taking-out night, his jaunty rendition of Kool & the Gang’s Ladies Night.

Ten years ago, neither my husband nor I could have imagined it, either. He’s actually happy to be taking out the garbage and recycling instead of working himself up into a Klingon-warrior-inspired snit about it? Yes, it’s true. Just one of the miracles of medication. And a few attitudinal adjustments.

I was reminded of that remarkable transformation today. In talking with some adults who have ADHD, I mentioned the importance of establishing treatment targets before starting to take medication; otherwise, how will you know if it’s working? Meg agreed: “The first big clue I had that my meds were working was when, instead of thinking about how much I hated taking out the trash and recycling, I just took out the trash and recycling.”  A woman after my husband’s heart!

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