First Politician In North America To Go Public With ADHD Sarah Blyth

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I was quoted in the Georgia Straight Newspaper on Sept 7th, 2011 on a local politician who was the first politician in North America to go public with having ADHD while in office. The title of the article is Opening up about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Helps Kids and Adults.

Sarah Blyth, a parks commissioner with Vision Vancouver had the courage to go public with ADHD, unlike other politicians who have ADHD but stay in the ADHD closet.

I know there are other politicians who have ADHD but stay hidden in the ADHD closet because I have coached them. As a political science major, I think there are more the 5% of politicians who have ADHD, it can be a competitive edge in politics although it can also be a problem.

Pete Quily, a local ADHD coach who has ADHD, told the Straight he was pleased to hear about Blyth’s coming-out.

“I wish more politicians had the guts to do that,” Quily, who majored in political science at the University of Alberta, said by phone. “I think one of the things that nowadays people want from their politicians is honesty.

And if you’re asking for honesty, it can’t just be, ‘Honestly, I’m just going to tell you all the good things I’ve had, and none of the possible things that could be negative.’ And ADHD can be both negative and positive.

One of the positive aspects of a politician [with ADHD] is, they are curious. They are going to ask questions, right?”

Quily also noted that people come out over allegations they’ve cheated on their spouses, or that they evaded their taxes, “but rarely over an inherited neurological condition” such as ADHD.


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