Knowledge of the ADHD fundamentals can be valuable in dispelling the harmful myths that often surround the young person with ADHD. Too many times, young people with ADHD are misunderstood by those around them—by parents, teachers, sports coaches, friends, and acquaintances. Because the source of these young people’s condition is invisible to the naked eye and resides at the level of the brain, loved ones and others may commonly mistake ADHD symptoms in the young person for laziness, lack of caring, indifference, impoliteness, or lack of intelligence. In fact, the reality is often far from the case. I have known many a young person with ADHD who wanted to accomplish his or her goals with the utmost amount of sincerity but yet suffered from a lack of skills and strategies for how to make progress. I have known plenty of others with ADHD who had big hearts but who could come across as uninterested or uncaring because they didn’t know how to listen and ask questions of others. And, to debunk the myth that ADHD points to a lack of intelligence, note that scientific genius Albert Einstein has been hypothesized to have had ADHD.
In sum, a clear understanding of the fundamentals of ADHD will provide the coach and other care providers with invaluable information: from how to interpret the behavior of a young person with ADHD, to when to probe for additional information of the young person, to when to refer the young person to other providers outside of coaching for assistance.