Featured Interview With Kristin Wilcox, PhD
Tell us a little about yourself. Where were you raised? Where do you live now?
I am a Jersey Girl who made her way to Boston, Mississippi, Atlanta, and Baltimore, earning a doctorate in pharmacology and pursuing my research career in behavioral neuroscience. When my youngest son, Andrew, was diagnosed with ADHD I quickly realized my 20-year research career, which included studying ADHD medications, would not prepare me to handle the challenges of being a mom to my neurodiverse son. Over the past 10+ years of helping Andrew manage his ADHD, I have experienced frustration, anger, worry, and pride. I learned to embrace my creative, risk-taking, emotional whirlwind of disorganization, and I wouldn’t change a thing.
At what age did you realize your fascination with books? When did you start writing?
I didn’t start writing consistenly until I was in graduate school, publishing my research studies in peer reviewed academic journals. Andrew’s Awesome Adventures with His ADHD Brain was my first attempt at creative writing. It was a challenging, and rewarding, experience.
Who are your favorite authors to read? What is your favorite genre to read. Who Inspires you in your writings?
Always the scientist, I enjoy reading the latest reasearch on ADHD. However, if I am looking for an enjoyable read while traveling it will not doubt be a book by Nora Roberts (I love her vivid, descriptive writing) or Michael Crichton (The Andromeda Strain is my favorite). The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien, recommended to me by both of my sons, makes my list of top reads.
Tell us a little about your latest book?
Andrew was diagnosed with the inattentive subtype of ADHD when he was eight years old. At the time, I didn’t realize how fortunate we were to have his teacher recognize his inattentive ADHD symptoms, since diagnosis of this subtype is typically delayed until adolescence. Andrew doesn’t fit the stereotypical profile of a hyperactive/impulsive boy with ADHD, and I saw the struggles he was facing due to his ADHD symptoms which were often mistaken for laziness or a lack of interest by teachers, coaches, and other adults. When searching for books to help me as a parent, I came to discover the current literature falls short of discussing inattentive-type ADHD in boys. My son and I knew it was important to share our story, to provide practical strategies to manage ADHD symptoms, and highlight how having ADHD makes you fearless, creative, and an excellent problem-solver. All the research for the book, and my discussions with my son, helped me to be a more understanding parent, and it’s rewarding to hear similar sentiments from parents who have read our book. My son feels like he is making a difference when young readers say they identify with his daily ADHD struggles, and they feel better knowing there is someone else just like them.
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