My mother is like the wife above. She thinks if she can do it, anyone should be able to do it. It’s very frustrating, and what led to be not being diagnosed until I was 35.
I’ve always known, well to be accurate, I’ve known since puberty that I was not Neurotypical. My parents have known since I was 5. I have two adopted brothers who have Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. They were recommended for this physical therapy program. To get in, you had to be assessed. While he was assessing my brothers (well, actually, while his graduate students were assessing my brothers as he oversaw the process) he noticed me, and something I was doing must have caught his attention, because he asked to evaluate me too. Apparently I passed (well, I guess failed) the test, because I was enrolled in the therapy as well. I never was told what any of that was about though. I just knew that I had to go to this place after school 2 or 3 times a week, where they tortured us with handwriting and coloring drills, and then took us to “gym time” where they would spin us in different ways, or make us jump over things or from one piece of paper to another. It all seemed pretty weird to me at the time. While I can see some the point to some of the activities now, since more research has been put into helping aneurotypical people, all of it was pretty crude, and some of it remains a complete mystery.
As a teenager, I was hearing about more things and putting them together in my mind, and thinking “hmmm”. Dyspraxia was the first thing where I noticed I hit almost every single symptom ALL OF THE TIME, but I was 17 at that point. I had no idea what I should do to get a diagnosis, or how it would help to have one. Over time I noticed that I had extreme sensory reactions that I’d initially thought of as normal, and only realized as abnormal when I would talk to someone about something and they’d look at me when I was crazy. Also, since the teenage years are the years of loud music, I learned that I was EXTREMELY sensitive to sound, since I absolutely could not tolerate loud music without feeling extreme physical and psychological pain. But again, what was there to do about it? Going to a doctor would never have occurred to me since I also have very severe anxiety, and avoided doctors.
Eventually, I had a breakdown and all of these things started pouring out, and I got diagnosed. For most of them, there’s really no treatment or cure besides practice and carrying ear plugs. ADHD is one of the few they can medicate.
But I do know what you mean about not knowing any other kind of brain.
I often wish I could live one day inside a Neurotypical body, just to see what “typical” feels like. What’s it like to not have all these whilrling tops, loose screws, and general disorder in your mind?