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No. Really. I HAVE ADHD… January 30, 2014

Posted by dreamom in Uncategorized.
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I was at an appointment today and found myself in a conversation that left me feeling like banging my head against a brick wall.  It started as a conversation about caffeine, and its use as a performance enhancing drug.  I commented that I believed that I rely on it to self medicate as I have attention deficit.  In response someone in the room asked me how many kids I have.  “5”.  They inquired how many were under 10 “4”.  To which they said “I think THAT might be why you need caffeine.”  And a discussion ensued on how tiring children are, and how he feels like he has ADHD somedays.  

Whether it was implied on purpose or not, I was left with a sense that my claim of ADHD was overstated, and that all my trouble staying on top of things could be explained simply by how many children I have.  I watch people with similar sized families, and I WISH this was true.  I have to say that I have gone through various stages in my life of accepting my ADHD as a part of me and how I operate, and writing off my symptoms as other things.  The fact is that I have always had it, and the nature of it is that I always will, and that although I can control a number of things in my environment to make it less problematic, that I need to function in the world where it is not the norm.  Someone who simplifies my thought processes or behaviour down to the number of children I have clearly has no clue.  

I showed my husband this video I saw on Facebook the other day…

My husband and I laughed, because many of these things are very realistic.  The part at the end when the friend suggests that she might have it – that is so common and true that it is almost not funny.  It is like me stubbing my toe and saying I am just like a guy with no leg.  Being busy is not having ADHD, nor is being lazy, or hyper.  ADHD does not just pop up here and there to make my day more interesting.  It is there all the time.  It is why days will go by where I won’t eat until dinner because I get distracted and forget, despite feeling physically ill.  It is sitting trying to figure out what to do for supper and not being able to THINK at all through the chitter chatter – even if in the next room.  It is standing in a room, trying to force yourself from curling up in a ball because it is a mess, and you can’t think of how to start to clean it.  It is impulsively agreeing to projects that are too big, and spending hours neglecting your life, up until 5am working to get it done so you don’t disappoint someone, or worse – fail.  It is NEEDING appointment reminders because I rarely am in tune with what day it is, and WILL miss it.  It is looking at a form and not being able to focus on the fields I need to fill out, or figuring out which one to do first.  It is spending your time being constantly pulled from one thing to the next, like you are being pushed down a river with a heavy current, and not finishing anything. 

The list can go on and on.  Although my husband and I can tell you that those things are very true, I am not keen to.  I don’t want people to know that I am that close to failing on any given project.  I don’t want to hear about how you think ADHD is made up to handle troubled kids in school.  How you didn’t think adults had it.  About how you thought you had it when you had trouble studying for your Chem320 exam.  Lastly, the last thing I want to hear is that the only reason I have trouble keeping up in life is NOT the Dr diagnosed ADHD that I have had my whole life, but rather that I have too many kids.  If that was my problem, I sure wish someone could have told me in university.  Maybe I would have finished ONE of my three degrees that I started…