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Like 007 I suspect I have ADHD, female mid-40s, journalist, 2 kids.
I did well in school but gradually grades slipped as I didn’t do/finish homework, procrastinated on studying for tests, found it extremely hard to pay attention in class (I still find lectures etc very difficult – the boredom is like a physical overwhelm)
Anyway I was described as ‘giddy’, ‘dopey’ – one teacher said I was like the seven dwarfs rolled into one. Reports mostly had ‘could try harder’, ‘tends to lack full concentration’ etc.
My best childhood friend I suspect is also ADHD, and while I had friends through school I felt sensitive about being teased for my lateness, being dopey.
I always felt like there was something wrong with me socially – I still find I drift in and out of conversations (esp in groups) no matter how hard I try to focus, I blurt out and interrupt (problem with finding natural gaps in conversation).
After school I did a business studies course and dropped out, then I took a job in civil service as a temporary thing and stayed there 6+ years.
I was very unhappy in the job, bored, frustrated, suffering from depression, anxiety, though never spoke to medical professional about these problems. Eventually after 1.5 years of severe depression and heavy alcohol abuse I found yoga and meditation which helped. I left that job and went back to college full-time. I worked a part-time job in evenings and weekends plus a summer job and did okay in college though struggled with handing in assignments on time, studying for exams.
I have worked as a journalist for 10+ years, and have found that I can have hyperfocus on many aspects of the job which helps. For much of my career I had daily deadlines which also worked for me.
Like 007 I love to read, can be good at organising certain things, and in my career even in the boring jobs was a hard worker.
I used to be habitually late, but since changing career I’ve become better at being on time even in my personal life.
I’ve travelled by myself, and lived abroad for a year and managed to organise myself to get to the airport etc.
My personal life is challenging: my partner has a chronic illness and can’t work, I’ve been supporting him since soon after I finished college. We have 2 great kids and this is the reason I began looking into this – our daughter – 9 – we both agree is more than likely ADHD – combined type/predominantly inattentive.
My partner finds it hard to deal with her disorganisation, clutter, lack of ability to finish things, untidiness. She is very bright, early talker and walker, loves to read. We are looking into getting her assessed.
My pain points are:
Procrastination – even this post is a way for me not to start an assignment
Focus/attention – I find it very hard to focus in many situations. I’ve started and stopped learning to drive many times over the past few years, and while my instructor says I’m a good careful driver she has accused me of not responding to her instructions. I realise I’ve also had a problem with following verbal instructions while doing something else. I can dance relatively well (I’ve been told) but couldn’t follow directions in a class – difficulty with automatically telling right from left).
Anxiety – about finances, about health, about kids.
Disorganisation – I struggle with clutter and I’m constantly berating myself for the mess. I often start a clear-out and can make good headway but almost never finish.
Finishing projects – I may start off with huge enthusiam for a project – spend hours and hours of time researching – at the expense of what I’m supposed to be doing – and then lose interest.
Social – as above I also felt like I didn’t fit in – I still have friendships from childhood, early adult years but find it difficult to make new friends
Sensitivities – I have been told I’m oversensitive emotionally. I also have smell and noise sensitivities than others don’t seem to have.
It was when I read this piece in The Pool (https://www.the-pool.com/health/mind/2017/44/ness-lyons-diagnosed-with-adhd-at-42) that I had a lightbulb moment – relief at first, then denial, anger, frustration. I want my daughter to realise her potential and be confident in the world.
Do I have ADHD/ADD?