View Full Version : PTSD vs ADHD poll


userguide
06-07-17, 10:24 AM
A recent post of Elanes reminded me of the blurred line between PTSD and ADHD

Hence the question:

Was your childhood traumatic ? I mean events that left you alone and helpless, and it's not a community-wide experience like floods, fire, war, etc.

peripatetic
06-07-17, 10:56 PM
i had traumatic events in childhood, but i don't have PTSD.

enduring trauma is a necessary, but not a sufficient, criterion for such a diagnosis.

as well, one can, and many do, develop PTSD as adults.

Greyhound1
06-07-17, 11:31 PM
A recent post of Elanes reminded me of the blurred line between PTSD and ADHD

Hence the question:

Was your childhood traumatic ? I mean events that left you alone and helpless, and it's not a community-wide experience like floods, fire, war, etc.

I think this is a tricky and difficult question. Having ADHD has given me emotional dysfunctions and lots of things were traumatic for me. My emotions from certain events are what traumatize me. They still traumatize me 40 + years later. I can still remember all those feelings at the time.

ADHD has caused me the most trauma in how overly sensitive and self-perpetuating my emotions are. I've been making mountains out of mole hills for a long time.

sarahsweets
06-08-17, 04:23 AM
I do not see adhd and trauma in the same light. I think having adhd can make some children more prone to abuse which would cause trauma, but I dont see the two as closely linked.

Greyhound1
06-08-17, 12:21 PM
I do not see adhd and trauma in the same light. I think having adhd can make some children more prone to abuse which would cause trauma, but I dont see the two as closely linked.

ADHD can cause emotional dysfunction which I believe is where my trauma stems from. Things that aren't traumatic for others such as my non-Adhd brother have caused me plenty of trauma. It's all in our perception.

Article on trauma and link to ADHD.
http://drellenlittman.com/adhdtraumaconnection.pdf

Andi
06-09-17, 09:00 AM
Before my Bipolar dx, I was having regular meltdowns and PTSD flashes. Now that I'm somewhat stable (after my last surgery my meds aren't working as well and adjusting hasn't helped much) I haven't had a meltdown in years. Do I think some of it was part of my childhood abuse due to ADHD? Family has reported that when the meltdowns would happen I would rage and vile, hateful things just rolled off the tongue and then I would crash and sob curled up in a ball and if you tried to touch me, I would beg to not be hit. Sooo...is PTSD and ADHD linked or blurred...does this tie to my ADHD? I don't think that applies to me. I was abused; I have PTSD tied to that trauma and I also crash due to BP. I don't think my ADHD had anything to do with the abuse. All three of us kids had various issues and conditions, eldest brother and I (youngest) were beaten often. We could never do anything right for mom and dad. Also I really don't remember doing anything bad but standing close and wham. The middle brother was mom's favorite and never touched by her (he almost died as a toddler so mom took a shine to the kid she almost lost) however dad couldn't stand him, thought he was weak and odd (still feels this way today). All three were abused. All three have been abusive to others. We have all had PTSD and rage related incidents but I don't think any of it was due to our ADHD.

Mom is bipolar and she had rage and meltdowns of her own (her mother was bipolar as well and she may have been hit often by her, gram had a horrible Irish temper and would go from gentle and kind to rage). However I still feel that for mom, my older brother and I were just an easy target; two undesirable, unwanted children (we were both accidental pregnancies). She would look for us or call for us so she could hit. Not just a spanking...welts on the backside where you couldn't sit down, backhands across the face, leave a bruise, bust a lip...hit.

Also, I felt she believed I was her competition...maternal grandparents adored me and showered me with love and affection, something I never got from her and I think she was jealous...single child that she was.

Dad was abused as a child and initially didn't want kids and both were stuck in an unhappy marriage because of us...so, take it out on the kids.

All that said; I have Bipolar, I have ADHD, I am OCD and I have had PTSD moments...I think they're all their own individual part of who I am, I don't see ADHD and PTSD as a blurred line. I don't think the bipolar or ADHD caused the abuse. I think my parent's demons and conditions were the source of the abuse. Because of my abuse I think my OCD (I must control things and put things in order to stop the spiral) and PTSD (too late, she's gone off the rails) are the outcome. So, harsh moments, I had no intention of inflicting on my children but I am aware that I failed doing so before I was dx'd. :(

Little Missy
06-09-17, 09:39 AM
I almost wish I had some type pf trauma growing up because not having any trauma from my parents, not having any dysfunction in childhood, having parents that loved each other and me and my bother equally and being rather sheltered sure showed me what trauma is when they died. :eek:

It was terribly traumatic when my dad died, but when I lost my mum 6 years later, it was too much for a long time.

It does get easier as time goes on but it will never go away.

userguide
06-10-17, 03:37 PM
I haven't voted yet myself.

By today's standars, I should vote 1.

By my parents' generation standards - 2 or 3

By my grands generation standards (2ww), my childhood was almost a paradise.

Maybe poor memory isn't such a bad thing afterall.

mildadhd
06-10-17, 05:04 PM
While acute and episodic distresses associated with PTSD can definitely make things worse, throughout life.

In general, i think impairment associated with AD(H)D is more due to abnormal chronic distressful circumstances experienced daily over a period of time during early infancy/toddlerhood/childhood, due to inheriting a more sensitive emotional temperament.

(In turn, in early life we got chronically distressed easier and more often, interfering with normal development.)

There are also other possible individual circumstances, in addition, to possibly being born with a more emotionally sensitive temperament, that may be contributing factors in individuals born with more sensitive emotional temperaments (or not), that may result in being abnormally chronically distressed, in early life.

But in this thread, I would like to focus on any possible common genetic factor (temperament) many of us may have been born with, that may have resulted in being abnormally chronically distressed, in early development.


m

mildadhd
06-11-17, 04:25 PM
An example of the kind of abnormal chronic distresses I am focusing on could be the year(s) before parents get a divorce.

The distresses do not begin from the divorce, the distressed family could occur for a length of time before the decision to divorce, etc.

(Even possibly before we are where born)




m

mildadhd
06-11-17, 04:53 PM
The more I learn about abnormal chronic distress, I realize that there are treatment options.

But sometimes there are doctors that are not aware of the fact and do nothing to help their patients, explore best treatment options.

Instead, the patient gets worse, and becomes more distressed from untreated distresses.

There seem to be some doctors that openly acknowledge that the parents can
become chronically abnormally distressed because their children have ADHD, but seem blind to the fact that children, especially children born with a more emotionally sensitive temperament, can become abnormally chronically distressed by the parents.

Those doctors seems to be interested in lessening distresses on the parents, but not interested in lessening the distresses on the children.

I am not saying this is intentional, but the doctor seems to have old social untrue ideology that young children are immune to distresses, which science has now shown to be untrue.

And that abnormally chronic distresses occurring during the early years of life can have an enormous negative impact on children's development that can have a negative impact throughout life, especially if the distresses are ignored and untreated.

M

Greyhound1
06-11-17, 06:30 PM
I think ADHD and it's emotional dysfunctions can greatly lower one's threshold for trauma. I feel my threshold and perceptions were more dysfunctional than those of most others. Things that traumatized me wouldn't and didn't traumatize others like my brother.

He received even more punishment than I did because he didn't care. Parents would spank him and he would say "that didn't hurt" and get hit harder. He would never cry or even be upset by it. I screamed bloody murder and thought I was going to die. I dwelled on it for weeks and he never gave it a second thought.

I was scared to death of my parents and learned to be very sneaky, whereas he was carefree and blatantly defiant.

My parents were shocked when I was much older and mentioned I had been traumatized. They really loved us and raised us the best way they knew how. They had no clue or desire for their methods to be traumatizing for me. They feel bad now and have asked if they were bad parents. They weren't. They followed the normal parent protocol for that time period but I was the one that was different.

mildadhd
06-11-17, 07:13 PM
I think ADHD and it's emotional dysfunctions can greatly lower one's threshold for trauma. I feel my threshold and perceptions were more dysfunctional than those of most others. Things that traumatized me wouldn't and didn't traumatize others like my brother...

.

Greyhound

I got to ask if you agree?

What is the difference between what you wrote in your quote above and what I wrote in post #9 below?

In my opinion what we are writing are very similar to me.


..In general, i think impairment associated with AD(H)D is more due to abnormal chronic distressful circumstances experienced daily over a period of time during early infancy/toddlerhood/childhood, due to inheriting a more sensitive emotional temperament.

(In turn, in early life we got chronically distressed easier and more often, interfering with normal development.)..

m

mildadhd
06-11-17, 07:34 PM
Hyperactivity, inattention and impulsiveness are all normal in early life.

Nobody is born with the ability to self regulate

How could we be born with ADHD?

The younger the child the more environmental influences development.

Abnormal distresses in early life from birth to the age of 4 can interfere with development from birth to the age of 4.

Especially if the child is born with a more emotionally hypersensitive temperament.

The emotionally hypersensitive temperament is what is genetically inherited, not ADHD.

ADHD is the result of abnormal distresses experienced by children born with more emotionally hypersentive temperaments.

Why don't people think this is extremely important in regards too lessening distresses, before biology involved becomes moderately to severely impaired?

Why do people not feel guilty about ignoring the fact that we are born more emotionally sensitive?

I do not think anyone should feel guilty, I am trying to raise awareness, my point is that we are not focusing on all the facts, for some unknown reason to me.

Feeling quilty instead of addressing the issues is not going to help, and will only make things worse in the long run.

Everyone deserves the help we need, instead of covering up the facts.




m

mildadhd
06-11-17, 07:47 PM
"Emotional dysfunctions" do not begin at age 4.

Emotional dysfunctions are present from birth.

ADHD is present between the age of 4-7 give or take.



m

mildadhd
06-11-17, 07:52 PM
I recommend everyone ask there doctors about the work of Dr. Peter Levine, as part of your ADHD treatment, the Dr. Barkley only approach is not enough.

Bio
Peter A. Levine, Ph.D. is the originator and developer of Somatic Experiencing® and the Director of The Somatic Experiencing Trauma Institute.
Peter holds doctorate degrees in Medical Biophysics and in Psychology and during his thirty five-year study of stress and trauma, has contributed to a variety of scientific and popular publications.
Among his many accomplishments…
Peter has been stress consultant for NASA in the development of the first Space Shuttle; he’s been a member of the Institute of World Affairs Task Force with Psychologists for Social Responsibility and has also served on the APA initiative for response to large scale disaster and Ethno-political warfare. He is on the ‘distinguished faculty’ of Santa Barbara Graduate Institute and is a Senior Fellow at The Meadows Addiction and Trauma Treatment Center in Wickenburg, Arizona.
Peter is the author of the best selling book Waking the Tiger – Healing Trauma,(published in twenty languages) as well as four audio learning series for Sounds Trueincluding the book CD, Healing Trauma, a Pioneering Program in Restoring the Wisdom of Our Bodies; and Sexual Healing, Transforming the Sacred Wound.
He is the co-author of Trauma through a Child’s Eyes, Awakening the Ordinary Miracle of Healing. And Trauma-Proofing Your Kids, A Parents Guide for Instilling Confidence, Joy and Resilience.

The Quote
Trauma is a fact of life but it doesn’t have to be a life sentence.
Peter Levine, PhD

namazu
06-11-17, 08:12 PM
Moderator note:
The question asked in the OP was:
Was your childhood traumatic? I mean events that left you alone and helpless, and it's not a community-wide experience like floods, fire, war, etc.
Please stay on topic. Posts that stray too much from this topic may be removed. Thanks.

dvdnvwls
06-11-17, 08:51 PM
I don't think there's any blur at all between PTSD and ADHD. I think it's always easy to tell which is which. Some people do have both of them at once, though, and that could raise a few questions about individual symptoms.

I had a nice happy childhood.

mildadhd
06-11-17, 09:15 PM
I was a very pleasant happy kid.

But that does not mean I did not experience obvious prenatal and postnatal abnormal chronic distresses of the my adoption

Especially if I was born with a more emotionally sensitive temperament.

The combination of emotionally hypersensitive temperament and adoption distresses could have impaired my pre and post natal development, and still be a happy kid.

Many people mention that having ADHD gets harder as the negative social impact of the impairment becomes more as we age, certainly true in my experience.

People who have experienced event that lead to PTSD could have experienced less acute but still abnormally chronic distresses before PTSD.

(While I appreciate the opening posters attempt to discuss the topics) I have not voted on the poll because the answers to the question are not always so cut and dry.

How could most of us even explicitly remember the first couple of years of our lives to accurately know how to vote, in regard to causation of impairment?

(Without asking parents of their experiences during our early lives)

I have been consciously trying to understand these topics for over ten years now, and along with other people who have been considering abnormal chronic distresses as partial factors, many people are who are less interested in the subject, are not considering the differences between abnormal chronic distresses and witnessing acute distresses.

And not considering the combination of abnormal chronic distresses, along with being born with a more emotionally hypersensitive temperament.

I have been considering and observing the combination along with peoples discussing personal family expereinces here at ADDFourms and it is very possible in my opinion.




m

Gypsy Willow
06-12-17, 10:08 AM
This is a good thread. I had a very happy childhood but was the "sensitive" child. My two sisters were hellions and things didn't seem to upset them as it would me. But perhaps it did...one ended up being an alcoholic and the other one is very unemotional and passive/aggressive. I was the good one; respected authority and loved spending time in my room listening to music and playing with my barbies. Very creative and imaginative. It makes sense I had/have Intattentive ADD.

But being ADD/sensitive....I am not afraid to express myself and say what I'm feeling. That to me, is a perk. We deal with things instead of burying them.

userguide
06-12-17, 05:00 PM
I haven't heard much of the concept of "abnormal chronic distress" in the ADHD context,
thanks for bringing it up mildadhd.

I think I know exactly what you're trying to say here, but at the same time it's hard
to put it into the frameset I already have.

That's why I maybe didn't think to include it in the poll. The option would have to read
"Did you feel your life sucked for more than 2 weeks? " .

How does abnormal chronic distress relate to "complex PTSD" ?

And does it have any diagnostic -> therapeutic use ?

mildadhd
06-13-17, 12:31 AM
I haven't heard much of the concept of "abnormal chronic distress" in the ADHD context,
thanks for bringing it up mildadhd.

I think I know exactly what you're trying to say here, but at the same time it's hard
to put it into the frameset I already have.

That's why I maybe didn't think to include it in the poll. The option would have to read
"Did you feel your life sucked for more than 2 weeks? " .


Thanks

I have attempted to create many polls, and after posting and receiving input from members, I have almost always realized it is very hard to represent all the possible circumstances in the poll options.

Although I have always learned from the members inputs' on all the possible poll options I did consider and the poll options did not consider.

I am happy to say, I've been happier with my choices of possible poll options in my more recent polls.

Working off your poll option idea quoted above, because there is always more than one factor involved, I wonder..

"Were you born more sensitive and did you and your family experience any types of unintentional distresses during your early infancy/toddlerhood/childhood, for more than two weeks"?

Thoughts?




m

mildadhd
06-13-17, 12:54 AM
How does abnormal chronic distress relate to "complex PTSD" ?

And does it have any diagnostic -> therapeutic use ?


I am feeling tired.

But I wanted to say I really like these questions and am learning as I consider the discussion.

I would like to get back to you, when I do not feel as tired.



m

userguide
06-14-17, 06:33 PM
Thanks

(...)

Working off your poll option idea quoted above, because there is always more than one factor involved, I wonder..

"Were you born more sensitive and did you and your family experience any types of unintentional distresses during your early infancy/toddlerhood/childhood, for more than two weeks"?

Thoughts?




m


This is good, but I had to read it 3 times to comprehend :lol:
I wouldn't know what "unintentional distress" is, neither for me as an infant, nor for my parents.

How about this: "Were you the most sensitive child in your class? "

aeon
06-14-17, 07:23 PM
I would vote "1," but I have fathered no children.


Cheers,
Ian

Greyhound1
06-14-17, 08:08 PM
I think there is probably a link between being overly sensitive and PTSD. Being overly sensitive sets us up for Traumatic stress. Having a much lower threshold to feel hurt, pain, abuse, anger, disappointment and the rest of our sensitive emotions seems to me to relate in a much lower threshold for PTSD.

Mountains out of molehills is our nature. I still have flashback of the anger and disappointment when I was 5 y/o and was told the truth about Santa, Easter bunny & Tooth fairy. I was devastated. I felt angry, betrayed and that all adults were liars. I wondered what else they had lied about. The world changed for me on that day. I even had to repeat kindergarten that same year.

Still remember vividly the mental and physical trauma of getting my *** and legs beat over and over with an old school metal tv antenna by my father. Getting beat with a huge paddle by a giant mean teacher right in front of everyone while classes changed out in the hallway, I was in Jr. high at age 13 and it still haunts me too.

Sorry, got off track. I need to stop before any more of my PTSD skeletons jump out.

mildadhd
06-15-17, 02:47 AM
This is good, but I had to read it 3 times to comprehend :lol:
I wouldn't know what "unintentional distress" is, neither for me as an infant, nor for my parents.

How about this: "Were you the most sensitive child in your class? "

:)

What about: "Were you the most sensitive child in kindergarten class?"

I was so sensitive I didn't make it to kindergarten.

edit: Maybe your idea is better.

"Were you the most sensitive child in your class" might be easier for everyone to explicitly remember?

I am not sure.

I would like to see the focus on as early in development as possible from a prevention and lessening of severity perspective.

"Were you the most sensitive child in kindergarten class?"

But maybe your original idea, "Were you the most sensitive child in your class" would be understood by everyone better?

Thoughts?




m

userguide
06-21-17, 04:13 AM
I would vote "1," but I have fathered no children.


Cheers,
Ian

I haven't either - I thought the children thing will separate seriously traumatic events from less seriously traumatic events (:)) , like in movies where the bad guy says "if you're so tough, let's stab this big red hot knife in the kid's eye" and the tough guy gives in.

I think there is probably a link between being overly sensitive and PTSD. Being overly sensitive sets us up for Traumatic stress. Having a much lower threshold to feel hurt, pain, abuse, anger, disappointment and the rest of our sensitive emotions seems to me to relate in a much lower threshold for PTSD.

Mountains out of molehills is our nature. I still have flashback of the anger and disappointment when I was 5 y/o and was told the truth about Santa, Easter bunny & Tooth fairy. I was devastated. I felt angry, betrayed and that all adults were liars. I wondered what else they had lied about. The world changed for me on that day. I even had to repeat kindergarten that same year.

Still remember vividly the mental and physical trauma of getting my *** and legs beat over and over with an old school metal tv antenna by my father. Getting beat with a huge paddle by a giant mean teacher right in front of everyone while classes changed out in the hallway, I was in Jr. high at age 13 and it still haunts me too.

Sorry, got off track. I need to stop before any more of my PTSD skeletons jump out.

That's sad. In my school teachers didn't dare to beat anyone (at least not me), but they used to humiliate children, especially those poorer/dumber/less popular/etc.



:)

What about: "Were you the most sensitive child in kindergarten class?"

I was so sensitive I didn't make it to kindergarten.

edit: Maybe your idea is better.

"Were you the most sensitive child in your class" might be easier for everyone to explicitly remember?

I am not sure.

I would like to see the focus on as early in development as possible from a prevention and lessening of severity perspective.

"Were you the most sensitive child in kindergarten class?"

But maybe your original idea, "Were you the most sensitive child in your class" would be understood by everyone better?

Thoughts?

m
As early as possible would be in the womb :)
I see your point, but what a therapist would say to the direction you're heading ? :p

I didn't make it to the kindergarten either.
Kindergarten is the very first time a child gets separated from his/her family for longer
and so this might generate a lot of stress for most children.

So let them chill and ask them later maybe :)

Fuzzy12
06-21-17, 06:27 AM
This is a good thread. I had a very happy childhood but was the "sensitive" child. My two sisters were hellions and things didn't seem to upset them as it would me. But perhaps it did...one ended up being an alcoholic and the other one is very unemotional and passive/aggressive. I was the good one; respected authority and loved spending time in my room listening to music and playing with my barbies. Very creative and imaginative. It makes sense I had/have Intattentive ADD.

But being ADD/sensitive....I am not afraid to express myself and say what I'm feeling. That to me, is a perk. We deal with things instead of burying them.

This was exactly my experience as well. I was quiet and well behaved and loved just playing by myself with teddies other figures. When I wasn't reading I spent hours creating and playing out stories. I had long storylines going.

Very uneventful childhood with very loving and caring parents but I was so sensitive that I still spent a lot of time being unhappy.

Gypsy Willow
07-07-17, 01:27 PM
This was exactly my experience as well. I was quiet and well behaved and loved just playing by myself with teddies other figures. When I wasn't reading I spent hours creating and playing out stories. I had long storylines going.

Very uneventful childhood with very loving and caring parents but I was so sensitive that I still spent a lot of time being unhappy.

^^^ Totally relate. I would escape through creativity.

mildadhd
07-09-17, 02:39 PM
I wonder if would be fair to say ADHD is a type of PTSD?




M

sarahsweets
07-10-17, 05:03 AM
I wonder if would be fair to say ADHD is a type of PTSD?




M

But, in order to have PTSD you have to have suffered some kind of trauma right? ADHD cant be THE trauma.

mildadhd
07-10-17, 12:10 PM
But, in order to have PTSD you have to have suffered some kind of trauma right? ADHD cant be THE trauma.

In many circumstances, being born with a more sensitive emotional temperament can be chronically distressful everyday, day after day.



M

daveddd
07-15-17, 09:20 PM
But, in order to have PTSD you have to have suffered some kind of trauma right? ADHD cant be THE trauma.

great point sarah

I've thought this about myself often

i remember times as a kid when i experienced emotions at a more conscious cognitive level, not a lot of memories but some. the emotions were so powerful , so overwhelming , so intense they were frightening

I wonder if that put me into mostly permanent parasympathetic state like PTSD

I still have poor emotional control, but since my mid teens, emotions have become just strong uncomfortable bodily sensations that i have difficulty differentiating a lot of the time

Sudano68
09-26-17, 09:59 AM
For context, I'm 27 and am diagnosed with ADHD (at 23) as well as "combat" PTSD. I don't really think I have combat PTSD though, I think it's mostly due to alienation and lack of real community where I live. (if youre interested in that, check out Sebastian Junger's book called TRIBE, or his short speach on TED Talks called "Why soldiers miss war". What he describes makes a hell of a lot more sense than combat PTSD, for me personally.

I believe that my "trauma" stems from trying so hard in school throughout my childhood, but never doing well or being able to keep up and feeling stupid and like an outcast. Today, thinking of going to school scares me, even though I want to. I love learning, want to be successful and can use the GI bill, yet, still cannot get my self to do it. I tried a pre college course for veterans, but it was overwhelming and I stopped going and feel into the lowest point that I've hit immediately after.

I joined the Army after dropping out of high school and did one tour in Afghanistan. Luckily I didn't see anything really bad like friends die in front of me or heavy combat. I only experienced far less traumatic things like indirect fire (which is being rocketed or mortared - think of lightning that hits the ground near you every 30 seconds or so but the ground just explodes, and it keeps getting closer while you are in cover just wondering where the next one will hit - thats the best analogy I can think of), almost hitting IED's (luckily, we found them before they found us), and just the general anxiety of being in a combat zone, wondering if everything in the road is going to blow up and kill you, but you get used to that pretty quick. I see things on the side of the road sometimes that make me think about IED's, b ut I don't swerve out of the way or panic in anyway.

Anyways, I'm more nervous thinking of being in a classroom than from thinking about being in "combat". It wasn't one specific event from my childhood that I'm makes me afraid of school, but rather a years of associating school with very negative emotions over a long period of time.


What if years of living with the diagnosed symptoms of ADHD as a child add up to a form of trauma?

Do both of these types of memories/events fall under PTSD?


If I didn't explain well, let me know and I will try again. Sorry.



I mainly posted this in response to
Originally Posted by sarahsweets http://www.addforums.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1955381#post1955381)
But, in order to have PTSD you have to have suffered some kind of trauma right? ADHD cant be THE trauma.