View Full Version : ADHD in girls.


Amtram
12-28-13, 11:52 AM
Chicago Tribune article on a long-term study (10 years) that looked at different symptoms and outcomes for girls with ADHD. (Print link (http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/sc-health-1225-adhd-boys-girls-20131227,0,216226,print.story)) The study was undertaken because the primary researcher noted that so few girls were included in major ADHD studies, and he wanted to know why and what the differences were.

Biggest problem seemed to be that while boys turn their frustration and anger outward, girls turn it inward. Girls with ADHD are more likely to fly under the radar and harm themselves, so his study attempts to point out the importance of diagnosing and treating girls even though they're not as disruptive to the rest of the world.

Tulip7171
12-28-13, 12:08 PM
Chicago Tribune article on a long-term study (10 years) that looked at different symptoms and outcomes for girls with ADHD. (Print link (http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/sc-health-1225-adhd-boys-girls-20131227,0,216226,print.story)) The study was undertaken because the primary researcher noted that so few girls were included in major ADHD studies, and he wanted to know why and what the differences were.

Biggest problem seemed to be that while boys turn their frustration and anger outward, girls turn it inward. Girls with ADHD are more likely to fly under the radar and harm themselves, so his study attempts to point out the importance of diagnosing and treating girls even though they're not as disruptive to the rest of the world.

Well, DUH!

I dropped out of high school. My sister had to fight for alternative schooling. neither of us DX ADHD at the time, & she's still not, but we both had anxiety issues. Sis told a classmate how she had to fight to get into that school, he replied, "Wow, I just had to throw a desk across the room."

I guess I need to stop bashing the Trib. :rolleyes:

I didn't read the whole article, but what I did read I liked. I'll try to finish it after meds. :p

:goodpost::thankyou:

Lunacie
12-28-13, 01:21 PM
Well, DUH!

I dropped out of high school. My sister had to fight for alternative schooling. neither of us DX ADHD at the time, & she's still not, but we both had anxiety issues. Sis told a classmate how she had to fight to get into that school, he replied, "Wow, I just had to throw a desk across the room."

I guess I need to stop bashing the Trib. :rolleyes:

I didn't read the whole article, but what I did read I liked. I'll try to finish it after meds. :p

:goodpost::thankyou:

My youngest granddaughter threw a lot of things across the classroom,
starting in 1st grade, and hid under her desk many times, also left the
classroom and wandered the halls. It was very difficult to get her moved to a
different school - although I first asked about it when she was in 1st grade.

She never threw a desk however - maybe if she had something would have
been done before the start of 5th grade, eh?

Nove is diagnosed NOS-PDD, mostly autism with anxiety, possibly ADHD.

Nicksgonefishin
12-28-13, 01:24 PM
Interesting thought.

There are hyper girls out there though that express violently.

Like in the case of domestic violence. There are many women who are the aggressors.

Personally I'm a runner. My ex was the physical one. So much anger. Many an argument was had in the bathroom because i couldn't even get that privacy.

Back on topic. There are also males who don't act out. I'm inattentive and I've never ever been violent in school work or otherwise.

Interesting article. Thanks for posting it.

Tulip7171
12-28-13, 01:36 PM
My youngest granddaughter threw a lot of things across the classroom,
starting in 1st grade, and hid under her desk many times, also left the
classroom and wandered the halls. It was very difficult to get her moved to a
different school - although I first asked about it when she was in 1st grade.

She never threw a desk however - maybe if she had something would have
been done before the start of 5th grade, eh?

Nove is diagnosed NOS-PDD, mostly autism with anxiety, possibly ADHD.

I get so ANGRY over how unsupportive the education system in the US is!

Tulip7171
12-28-13, 01:44 PM
Interesting thought.

There are hyper girls out there though that express violently.

Like in the case of domestic violence. There are many women who are the aggressors.

Personally I'm a runner. My ex was the physical one. So much anger. Many an argument was had in the bathroom because i couldn't even get that privacy.

Back on topic. There are also males who don't act out. I'm inattentive and I've never ever been violent in school work or otherwise.

Interesting article. Thanks for posting it.

I do think it's more a matter of Inattentive vs. Hyperactive than about gender.

It's about how disruptive to "normal" life your behavior is rather than how much difficulty you're having fitting into "normal" life.

It's the "children should be seen & not heard" thing taken way too far. As long as you don't disturb others, you can't possibly be disturbed yourself.

Gah! I'm getting too emotional here! Sorry, obviously I'm a bit bitter today! :giggle:

Canadian Mess
12-28-13, 02:01 PM
I do think it's more a matter of Inattentive vs. Hyperactive than about gender.

It's about how disruptive to "normal" life your behavior is rather than how much difficulty you're having fitting into "normal" life.

It's the "children should be seen & not heard" thing taken way too far. As long as you don't disturb others, you can't possibly be disturbed yourself.

I second the "gender" theory (not trying to disregard the bisexual/transsexual/gay/lesbian just talking about the majority of the population in general etc).

I think girls are underdiagnosed because of the general society views on what girls should be like and what boys should be like. Girls are generally expected to be quieter, internalize things, not move around a lot, not fight, be sweet etc. When a girl acts up she's "moody, obnoxious, stubborn, in a phase, talkative". If a girl has ADHD, everyone just notices depression, anxiety, mood disorders symptoms... they don't see the difficulty to concentrate, to stop moving around or talking loudly.

If a boy acts up it's just "boys being boys"... when he's running around, being really talkative, climbing the walls.. he's more external with the ADHD symptoms. He is seen as more disruptive and more noticeable. Everyone automatically thinks boys could have ADHD, not girls.

That's why it took till university to get me diagnosed with ADHD- combined type no less. I had all the symptoms, but everyone just coughed it up to me being a tomboy, depressed, anxious, moody, stubborn, chatty, forgetful, messy... (ADHD telltale signs!!!!) but not ADHD.

Lunacie
12-28-13, 02:55 PM
Interesting thought.

There are hyper girls out there though that express violently.

Like in the case of domestic violence. There are many women who are the aggressors.

Personally I'm a runner. My ex was the physical one. So much anger. Many an argument was had in the bathroom because i couldn't even get that privacy.

Back on topic. There are also males who don't act out. I'm inattentive and I've never ever been violent in school work or otherwise.

Interesting article. Thanks for posting it.

I didn't get physical with people, but as a child I slammed a LOT of doors, and
as a adult I continued to do that and put a fist through a wall once and threw
a few dishes (not AT anyone) and even a couple of kitchen chairs. Of course I
didn't slam doors at school or get into push-fights with other kids.


I do think it's more a matter of Inattentive vs. Hyperactive than about gender.

It's about how disruptive to "normal" life your behavior is rather than how much difficulty you're having fitting into "normal" life.

It's the "children should be seen & not heard" thing taken way too far. As long as you don't disturb others, you can't possibly be disturbed yourself.

Gah! I'm getting too emotional here! Sorry, obviously I'm a bit bitter today! :giggle:

re the bolded part: You might think that, but I do think it goes deeper, with
girls being more interested in pleasing others (especially adults) than boys
are and therefore moderating their behavior. I believe there has been some
research done on this.

Nicksgonefishin
12-28-13, 02:57 PM
"Children should be seen and not heard" was a big theme in my parents house growing up.

I didn't realize till recently how much damage that can cause.

Like when girls are told to be quiet and look pretty. Maybe the message to be quiet is sent to them more.

We do treat genders differently. "Boys will be boys" makes it more acceptable for males to be loud and obnoxious.

Lunacie
12-28-13, 03:19 PM
"Children should be seen and not heard" was a big theme in my parents house growing up.

I didn't realize till recently how much damage that can cause.

Like when girls are told to be quiet and look pretty. Maybe the message to be quiet is sent to them more.

We do treat genders differently. "Boys will be boys" makes it more acceptable for males to be loud and obnoxious.

Not being allowed to "talk back" or say "no" to adults got a lot of kids (boys
and girls both) sexually molested. I had a heart-to-heart talk with my daughter
and son-in-law about this when my grandkids were little.

Amtram
12-28-13, 04:09 PM
Really, the main reason I got diagnosed was that I behaved more like a boy. Hyperactivity in a girl really stood out.

Nicksgonefishin
12-28-13, 04:28 PM
Not being allowed to "talk back" or say "no" to adults got a lot of kids (boys
and girls both) sexually molested. I had a heart-to-heart talk with my daughter
and son-in-law about this when my grandkids were little.

Good point. Don't talk back isn't what I learned. I learned not to talk period. Good bad or otherwise.

Lunacie
12-28-13, 04:44 PM
Good point. Don't talk back isn't what I learned. I learned not to talk period. Good bad or otherwise.

That sucks. I couldn't talk to my dad, but I had some good conversations with
my mom, as long as I wasn't "talking back."

Pingu*
12-28-13, 07:26 PM
Everyone automatically thinks boys could have ADHD, not girls.
Reminds me of what Svenny Kopp (Swedish child and adolescent psychiatrist interested in girls and neuropsychiatric disorders) wrote in a presentation (probably with a reference):
"Teachers more often interpret boys' oppositional behavior as ADHD, and girls' ADHD symtoms as oppositional behavior."
Which I believe is very true. Me and other crazy girls in school were just viewed as "crazy" and "oppositional", never was a diagnosis ever considered.

ana futura
12-28-13, 07:47 PM
Internalization vs externalization is what it's always seemed like to me. The same is true for the non-ADHD population as well, women are more likely to internalize.

I think I present in a more hyper and defiant fashion because I was an only child and very entitled. My instinct is always to think that everyone else is at fault. So instead of moping around or hating myself, I yell and scream at people for being idiots.

Not all boys are raised to be entitled, but I think far more boys are entitled than girls, on average.

Any time I got in trouble at school I would somehow convince my mom to take my side. I think I learned how to take advantage of my parents misanthropy. It was never hard to convince my parents that an authority figure was terrible, because they also had little respect for the concept of authority. Every problem I ever had was because I was simply "too smart" for school. It's really been a bear to unlearn that attitude and become a functional adult, but I'm also grateful that I don't have to deal with the self loathing that other people with ADHD have to deal with. It's hard to hate yourself when everything is someone else's fault. It's the perfect self defense mechanism, and I suspect that externalization is the natural state for the ADHD'er, until it's beaten out of them.

While I wasn't dx'ed as a child, I was dx'ed within a couple months of my first contact with a mental health professional. I never had to deal with the ssri carousel or any of that. If I wasn't such a self righteous, quick to anger jerk off, I'd probably still be undiagnosed. So, thanks mom and dad! :D

Nicksgonefishin
12-28-13, 08:46 PM
Internalization vs externalization is what it's always seemed like to me. The same is true for the non-ADHD population as well, women are more likely to internalize.

I think I present in a more hyper and defiant fashion because I was an only child and very entitled. My instinct is always to think that everyone else is at fault. So instead of moping around or hating myself, I yell and scream at people for being idiots.

Not all boys are raised to be entitled, but I think far more boys are entitled than girls, on average.

Any time I got in trouble at school I would somehow convince my mom to take my side. I think I learned how to take advantage of my parents misanthropy. It was never hard to convince my parents that an authority figure was terrible, because they also had little respect for the concept of authority. Every problem I ever had was because I was simply "too smart" for school. It's really been a bear to unlearn that attitude and become a functional adult, but I'm also grateful that I don't have to deal with the self loathing that other people with ADHD have to deal with. It's hard to hate yourself when everything is someone else's fault. It's the perfect self defense mechanism, and I suspect that externalization is the natural state for the ADHD'er, until it's beaten out of them.

While I wasn't dx'ed as a child, I was dx'ed within a couple months of my first contact with a mental health professional. I never had to deal with the ssri carousel or any of that. If I wasn't such a self righteous, quick to anger jerk off, I'd probably still be undiagnosed. So, thanks mom and dad! :D

This is the first I've heard of adhd and entitlement going together.

My ex was very very very entitled. I never understood it. She was gorgeous. The pretty daughter. She is a hyper.

I've never been entitled. I've always been humble or so others thought. Truth is I was in denial of the positive comments that came my way.

So if opposition is fed it can lead to entitlement?

pooka
12-28-13, 08:58 PM
Although my brother and I have different diagnoses - he has NLD while I have ADD - I see these differences manifesting in us.

My mom always says I was a really good baby, always quiet and never fussy. My brother was the exact opposite. He threw tantrums, he yelled and cried, and to this day he acts out in violent bursts and torrents of verbal abuse. I learned, when I was younger, that my brother's issues were more than enough for Mom and Dad to handle. Parts of my life revolved around keeping him happy so our family could have some peace. I was always praised for my flexibility and ability to go with the flow, and always got positive feedback from my parents when I gave up something I wanted so that my brother could have his way.

I think this is why I wasn't diagnosed until I was 14 when I asked to get diagnosed, and had the support of my school counselor behind me. Whereas my parents spent the first 8 years or so of my brother's life trying to get a diagnosis and accommodations for him, because his outward symptoms had a much bigger impact on the family as a whole, whereas my ADHD symptoms generally hurt no one but my grades. I've been told repeatedly my whole life that I am "my own worst enemy," but apparently that was fine if I was nobody else's enemy.

I know his disorder is more severe than mine, so I try not to be bitter. But I think the bitterness has come out in a stubborn refusal now to give in to things just to pacify my brother, so now I'm veering away from the complacency that I used to strive for, toward a more oppositional and probably just as unhealthy attitude.

I used to complain that it was so unfair the way my youngest brother and I were treated differently from my NLD brother, and was told "you're treated differently because you're all different people." I wonder if boys and girls are treated differently because they are different, or if they are different because of the way they are treated differently.

ana futura
12-29-13, 09:45 AM
This is the first I've heard of adhd and entitlement going together.

My ex was very very very entitled. I never understood it. She was gorgeous. The pretty daughter. She is a hyper.

I've never been entitled. I've always been humble or so others thought. Truth is I was in denial of the positive comments that came my way.

So if opposition is fed it can lead to entitlement?

No, I don't think they "go together", I just think that entitlement affects the manifestation. And many boys are raised to be entitled, I think more often than girls. The whole culture sends men messages that they are entitled to certain things. Women don't receive as many of those messages. You'd have to have very strong contrary messages from your parents to drown out those cultural messages. An individualist culture and notions of entitlement go hand in hand.

I'm certainly not implying that every hyper child is a product of entitlement, hyper children could have parents that treated them like absolute crap as well.
I think with abusive parents it can go either way- either the child rebels and maintains their autonomy and directs their anger outwards, or they internalize.

I do think though that ADHD has a tendency to make one self centered- simply because it is difficult to care for others when it's so hard to care for yourself. This nature towards self centeredness I think drives some of us insane- we think are horrible people because we don't want to be self centered, but our actions conflict with our desires. Others become jerks, doing whatever we want because controlling our behavior with others is just too difficult.

I seem to alternate between the two- being horribly self centered, and going out of my to help others.

Nicksgonefishin
12-29-13, 12:05 PM
No, I don't think they "go together", I just think that entitlement affects the manifestation. And many boys are raised to be entitled, I think more often than girls. The whole culture sends men messages that they are entitled to certain things. Women don't receive as many of those messages. You'd have to have very strong contrary messages from your parents to drown out those cultural messages. An individualist culture and notions of entitlement go hand in hand.

I'm certainly not implying that every hyper child is a product of entitlement, hyper children could have parents that treated them like absolute crap as well.
I think with abusive parents it can go either way- either the child rebels and maintains their autonomy and directs their anger outwards, or they internalize.

I do think though that ADHD has a tendency to make one self centered- simply because it is difficult to care for others when it's so hard to care for yourself. This nature towards self centeredness I think drives some of us insane- we think are horrible people because we don't want to be self centered, but our actions conflict with our desires. Others become jerks, doing whatever we want because controlling our behavior with others is just too difficult.

I seem to alternate between the two- being horribly self centered, and going out of my to help others.

wells said.

I think that alternating between not wanting to be self centered and helping each other are the same thing. If you are fighting being self centered a certain amount of self avoidance can happen and this manifests by over compensating and helping others even to the point of meddling!(my own epiphany, I've been struggling with the concept of needing to be meddling for weeks)

So if we beleive that ADHD-pi and ADHD are in the same spectrum and affect the same set of cognative functions then it is a matter of nurture that decides manifestation.

If nurture is the deciding factor between PI and H manifestation it definetly explains the difference between male and female ADHD. And that difference is that there isn't one. We are simply males with ADHD and females with ADHD. Because we are nurtured differrently as men and women we manifest differently.

I lost my point.... oh yeah... ADHD is ADHD. The manifestation differences in sex is cultural influence.

We are human first and formost.

mirandatoritess
12-29-13, 01:59 PM
People say to me "Asian, a girl, and smart? No way you can't have ADHD."
ADHD affects my social abilities and my job. So it never affected my schoolwork in a major way.

Corina86
12-30-13, 12:21 PM
I don't think me being ADHD-PI has anything to do with my upbringing. I would have been quiet and introverted no matter what anyone would've told me to do. It was just me. I don't blame anyone for not noticing my ADHD, but I blame them (every adult in my life) a lot for not noticing or caring about my depression and my anxiety! Because my grades were ok, I wasn't harming myself or anybody else, well... nobody cared. All I heard was how I will get over it.