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A psychiatrist I was seeing years ago wanted to treat me with Lithium and other drugs that were making me a zombie. He believed that I didn’t fit into the righteous circle of society, so he wanted to change me to be “normal”.
When I told him: “I don’t want to change, I don’t want to be normal. I just want to stop suffering” he got really mad.
He was the same psychiatrist that had been able to identify my son’s ADHD and to prescribe him Ritalin, which eventually helped him to succeed at school and go to university.
Strangely enough he couldn’t be as effective in diagnosing the same disorder in an adult female patient. He labeled me with Borderline Personality Disorder and totally ignored the most obvious possibility that the mother of a boy with ADHD could have the same condition herself.
I find that most doctors are not knowledgeable enough about ADHD in adult patients. The majority still considers it a childhood disorder that will eventually disappear with maturity.
At the same time of my personal struggle to manage my condition, I researched intensely about ADHD to help my son. So, being a high school teacher, I ended by helping also many students. I was the expert in charge to educate my colleagues and many parents about ADHD. That was twenty years ago.
Sadly it took me another fifteen years before I could finally get my own diagnose.
Today I know that my flaws are gifts instead. My flamboyant creativity, my excessive empathy, my noisy sense of justice are just some examples of the unique person I am.
Yes, I am messy, forgetful and chronically late BUT I am also a multitalented artist, a honest citizen and a loyal friend. My whole intelligence would not be complete without my other less popular traits.
Indeed, sometimes I need to remind myself too that being different is not synonymous of being bad, but something to be proud of.