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Summary

Most of us have heard of ADHD (Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder), so why is it so common for women not to be diagnosed until they are in midlife? While boys manifest their ADHD in hyperactive behaviors, female sufferers tend to internalize their symptoms, contending with anxiety, depression, demoralization, and self-esteem issues. Because of this, a woman's diagnosis often comes later on, with the realization that she is just not coping with life, work, and relationships as well as she should be. She's not meeting anyone's expectations, certainly not her own. So much has been discovered in the last 10 years about ADHD in girls and women, but a lot of it's still not commonly known. Awareness of your symptoms is the key to change, and it all begins with self-awareness.

Novelist Gabriella West is refreshingly candid about her journey towards a diagnosis of ADHD, which started a few years ago when she encouraged her female partner to get a diagnosis. She uncovers a family history of the disorder, looking back at her own mother's life as a divorced American in Ireland in the 1970s. In Connecting the Dots, she highlights common symptoms that women with inattentive-type ADHD experience, and shows that although getting a diagnosis is not necessarily easy, the relief of finding an explanation for things that previously just seemed "wrong" is enormous and healing.

©2013 Gabriella West (P)2019 Gabriella West

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What listeners say about Connecting the Dots: My Midlife Journey with Adult AD/HD

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Very refreshing to hear that I am not alone.

Am on my own journey right now and hearing other accounts gives me hope for the process.

4 people found this helpful

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very useful

I enjoyed this although I found it disappointingly short. very relatable.
I am a 44 year old woman still awaiting diagnosis in the UK. I believe myself to be quite severely inattentive. Gabriella's comments on SCT which I had heard of but not really explored rang very true with me so I will look into this more now.
I also really appreciated the comments on creativity as a highly creative but 'unsuccessful' person.
The comments on medication were also very helpful as it is something I am beginning to open up to more as an option to help me function better and Goddess knows I need to!
I am partly leaving off a point because of the rather brief dismissive comment about being a parent with ADHD... I am a single mother who only realised my own ADHD through struggling so much to deal with parenting two young children and running a home. Gabriella's comments triggered my own feelings of inadequacy and perhaps failures as a parent when she implied she was thankful to not be a parent because this would be in some way selfish... that's my own stuff I guess but I feel she still set us parents slightly adrift from a compassionate stand point.
Overall it was an interesting and helpful story.

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Relatable and reassuring

So relatable and reassuring to know that I'm not alone, that there's nothing wrong or broken in me, and that despite my past and the late diagnosis there is still hope for me to do something with my life.

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  • Brandy Griffith
  • 23-09-20

No strategies provided for coping w/ ADHD

This book is an interesting summary of the author’s experience with the discovery that she might have ADHD and her journey in obtaining an official diagnosis. In this regard, the book is very effective. However, as a newly diagnosed adult female, I was hoping the book would provide some helpful strategies, tips, and/or personal insights from a female perspective, on ways one might cope with and effectively manage symptoms in order to improve functioning in their daily lives. The book fell very short in this regard.

Although I could certainly identify with the author in many ways on coming to the realization that I have ADHD, other than a short summary of available medications, a few already well known websites, and a handful of recommendations on what other books to read on the subject, the author completes her personal account without providing the reader with any new guidance whatsoever. This exclusion may be due to the fact that the author is relatively newly diagnosed herself. Nonetheless, I would say that although the book is well written and effectively narrated, I felt it mainly consisted of only a highly relatable story, and failed to offer a more technical description or any helpful guidance for someone hoping to overcome these challenges.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Always On the Move
  • 15-06-19

It Connected to My Dots, Too!

Women with ADD or ADHD are a special type. Many of us are high-functioning and getting by... until we aren't. This thoughtful memoir by Gabriella West is about getting through the crisis point that happens when we realize we might need some help after all.

6 people found this helpful

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  • That Grrrl
  • 18-05-21

Good, wished it was an actual book

This was good, but I used my monthly credit, thinking this was a book, and didn't realize it was just a paper until I opened it to listen. That's separate from the content of the paper (again, it was a good listen), but I'm annoyed about that. I was quick to select it because I wasn't finding much specifically about women and midlife diagnosis.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sarah Rabot
  • 20-02-21

I could Relate So very much

this book isn't long but for me but she was able to pin point all the traits and patterns I have which made me feel not so alone it this adhd world. I appreciated the info she shared on other authors and Doctors that specialized more in a certain area and also explained her view on medications.
I enjoyed it .

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  • Lindsey James
  • 08-06-21

OKAY ... I’m you help me with my disabilities ...

My God! I can’t tell now if I’m connecting the dots BC I need them for myself .... but I’m begging after july6th 2021 I’ll have both sets of dentures. Gabriella I need yous to tell my story BC I cannot without judgement and my sister omfg but not to disrespect with the letter f... effin n I’m 35, July 24th this year 2021 I’ll be 36. My sister aug 4th 41.... and I cannot lose her my therapist and I have cannot survive it.... I’m bout to quit talking cuz I’m not trying to hurt anyone; I’m special I’m not upset about it at all, except we from the south specifically Baton Rouge Livingston and Laurel MS. ... if I’m crazy plz I’d love to know BC one more time I hear bookcase bipolar (I mean do NOT get me, I love them they have issues with me BC ....
This last hmmm Idk Ma’am but take us two with yous to Ireland I’m not gonna be able to leave again from thus state without my sister or lil big brother 21yrs ... be diligent and if I can really (I heard the psychic in Vegas, ? Are you still drawn to me with a bronze aura prove it I’m supposed to change the world for the better I can’t do that alone I’m really tired of asking for help and she she won’t help me help her help me PS I was a seizure strictly as I do you can’t sleep because it’s a spider percent healthy I was coming out of my closet figuratively and literally(that’s where I can open the door to “my own room” and my sister was right there did I mention anything that would get yous to help me BC look at I don’t want to be the bearer of bad news but holy grail Taylor Swift Shawn Mendes just listing off some great people I want to feel beautiful I want my sister back on the nurse practitioner game mental health because she is the only one that hasn’t ever gave it up on me and I’ve been I’m allergic to medicine no job I took a DNA test it’s not funny thank God literally. Yesss I’m anxious and I don’t know what this window is I feel normal I mean I still feel for the shrink in Russia it’s like 410 49 call plumber look like a child but I’m not quite old I cannot shut up once I started freaking open in my mouth can you at least tell me how to not bring down like my sister my brother and your children OK yes possibly a protective everyone has been my therapist said personality that they transfer the closet and I feel safe write another book... send me links I can’t write it down fast enough I really I need to prove to myself not them myself turn on the Wi-Fi so I did write that down she was a C is chapter chapter 4 is my sister that she has a deviation of the latest one for 2021 show me a spell my name out for you that’s my email and Yahoo iCloud and then I’ll give you my cell plz leave me a msg if you try to Save another life because I am I am not gonna kill myself I’ve got too much to live for and it took dreaming and leaving my family that was still here Gabrielle my cousin Jacob same age everything drowned and he’s a fire fighter seriously I’ve made so much progress help did you go