Welcome to the About Gina Pera page.
You’re seeking support and education for Adult ADHD, right? You value your life, your relationship, your family, right? That means, I assume, that you want solid expertise and experience, right?
But, have you noticed? Finding solid ADHD expertise on the Internet—or even in the mental-health profession—can be tricky! On this page, I briefly offer my credentials and how I might be able to help you.
You’ll find more information on my work and background throughout this site.
Helping you to understand—and thrive in the presence of—Adult ADHD.
For 20 years, my focus has been twofold:
- Reducing suffering and elevating lives by providing support, validation, and education
- Raising the discourse around Adult ADHD—and its treatment standards.
Why This Mission? I’ll Tell You
In 1993, I was a print journalist living in San Diego. Then I met my future husband, a scientist. In the process, I accidentally discovered Adult ADHD—and the overwhelming need millions of people had for knowledgeable support.
It all left me stunned—the lack of awareness and professional help. Twenty years later, it still does!
See that photo above? It’s our wedding, in 1999. Notice me in the dripline? See the soaked fabric on my shoulder. I didn’t know I was in the dripline—I thought it was just raining that hard. My husband didn’t realize he’d put me in the dripline! Consider that literal and metaphorical, for years until we found our way.
Once I realized how common our challenges were for millions of others, I decided to shine a light on the path for others behind us. And he has supported me every step of the way.
“But What Are You Exactly, Gina Pera”?
I get that question a lot. Some readers ask if I am a coach or a therapist—or a psychiatrist (those emails are addressed to “Dr. Pera”).
Trouble is, my work defies easy categorizations.
One week I’m successfully leading the charge for the FDA to downgrade inferior Concerta generics that were sending lives off the rails. The next week, I am presenting a plenary talk at a professional ADHD conference on our Adult ADHD-Focused Couple Therapy model. The next, I’m facilitating my long-time face-to-face groups (one for adults with ADHD and one for the “partners of”) in Palo Alto, California.
Currently, I am finishing a series of comprehensive online training for adults with ADHD and their loved ones (ADHD Success Training).
Naturally, lack of a simple message makes me a marketer’s nightmare. But smart folks manage to find me, and I am grateful for their company.
From what they tell me, they know I’m in their corner. And, my cross-disciplinary knowledge, in particular, helps them to solve many a mystery in their lives.
The truth is, there is nothing simple about ADHD. I believe you deserve a comprehensive understanding and evidence-based knowledge. And, I work to make it accessible to the average person and to mental-health professionals.
The Lived Experience Plus
My direct experience with Adult ADHD includes:
- The “lived experience”—my husband was diagnosed in 1999, thanks to my trying to make sense of seemingly paradoxical behavior (more below)
- Founding and leading for 16 years an online group for the partners of adults with ADHD—1,000 members at any one time and 14,000 posts overall (and counting)
- Leading two face-to-face groups in Silicon Valley for 15 years: One for adults with ADHD, one for the “partners of”; both free and open to the public
- Attending years of high-level conferences on ADHD—taking copious notes and asking questions
- Reading many hundreds of published papers
- Writing this award-winning blog for 12 years—and reading every comment (responding, too)—almost 6,000 at last count
- Publishing in 2008 the groundbreaking, award-winning Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? —the first and only book to comprehensively detail Adult ADHD, the impact of late-diagnosis, the dual nature of “denial”, the potential effect on loved ones, and evidence-based treatment strategies
- Being invited by a preeminent ADHD research and clinical expert, Russell Barkley, PhD, to write the first-ever chapter on couple therapy for his “gold standard” clinical guide.
- Conducting the most comprehensive survey on Adult ADHD, the ADHD Partner Survey, the findings of which are included in Dr. Barkley’s clinical guide
- Producing, with esteemed ADHD authority Arthur L. Robin, PhD, the first clinical guide for treating ADHD-challenged couples: Adult ADHD-Focused Couple Therapy: Clinical Interventions.
Award-Winning Print Journalist
Facts matter. They especially matter in a field so widely misunderstood and even disparaged, where real lives hang in the balance.
As a veteran journalist with a reputation for accuracy, I’ve brought to this topic since 2000 my skills in
- Parsing statistics
- Vetting experts as being reputable and truly expert
- Assessing and gleaning key points from the published research—and gauging the strength of the research
- Chasing down facts
- Synthesizing complex information into everyday language
- Knowing the limits to my knowledge and referring for more information to vetted research and/or specialists
Thank you for spending time with me. I’ll try to make the most of it! Let’s work together to elevate lives and the standard of Adult ADHD care.