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@Penny Williams: Thank you for the link! I’ve actually already read it a while ago, but helpful to go over it, again.
@firstname.lastname@example.org and @quietlylost also thank you for your feedback!
My therapist/psychologist said if I wanted an evaluation, I would have to approach my psychiatrist (which I’m planning to do on my next appointment). While she doesn’t think it’s completely ridiculous to want to be evaluated, she doesn’t seem to think I have it and also thinks it’s not worth the effort. She said for adults, the process is tedious and not straightforward, as it includes bringing in old school records and finding people who’ve known me since childhood and who are willing to fill out questionnaires (i.e. parents). And how a diagnosis wouldn’t change anything in terms of treatment etc.
I have my school report cards. They say nothing — on the contrary, particularly in kindergarten they keep pointing out how I’m an ambitious student who’s paying attention, finishes tasks fast and on time etc. …. so…the exact opposite you’d expect from someone with ADHD.
My parents….I’m very uneasy to approach them about that. They’re from the “pull yourself together and focus” tribe.
So, essentially it’s my word. And while my gut feeling says “YES”, it’s hard to “proof”. I know how difficult ADHD diagnosis is, particularly since it’s so vastly overdiagnosed, and how critical differential diagnoses are. But I’ve rarely felt so certain about something…that is after having done a LOT of research on it over the past few months. Because my baseline is being skeptical. But this….just makes SO much sense!
Like @email@example.com I’ve always been somewhat socially awkward, and while I get along with most people, I do have a hard time “really” fitting in in what is considered “normal” social contexts.
I was lucky enough to go to a specialized school for highly intelligent/gifted people in the Sciences. It was extremely challenging and I think that’s what kept me afloat. I need challenge in my life and I love Science and learning. It made me thrive. Careless mistakes in Maths and Physics I compensated by taking on every single extra task to improve my grades. And generally, I was the one organizing every single class event, the teachers’ helper, and entertained at least two extra-curriclular courses and on average 3-4 regular hobbies. I just kept myself busy as hell. Also, all the folks in my class were neurologically atypical (i.e. IQ 130-140 people) and hence we got along perfectly because we all were “different” and we understood each other and our struggles without explanation. It made ALL the difference from personal experience for a couple years in a normal middle school context.
I’m also exhausting to be around and tend to overwhelm people. But my friends in highschool could take it – because they themselves were exhausting (ever discussed with someone about black holes and n-dimensional hyperspaces at age 14? :p )
I guess why it matters to get diagnosed? First and foremost confirmation that I’m not just lazy or not trying hard enough. That it’s not just all in my head.
But also, to get proper treatment (whatever that is because I’m reluctant re medication) and to be able to appropriately communicate my struggles with the people around me, family as well as health professionals. It makes all the difference if I say for example “I’m having a hard time focusing/motivating” as a symptom of ADHD or depression.