August 22, 2019 at 4:10 pm #126066
This probably won’t be popular, but I’m so sick of being told that I’m “neurodiverse.” That having ADD is not a disability or a brain disorder. That I’m fine the way I am. I’m NOT fine the way I am. ADD spacial issues prevent me from driving. I can’t deal with a full time schedule because I literally pass out at work from exhaustion if I try. I struggle with basic adult skills like paying bills on time and keeping my tiny apartment at least minimally organized. I can’t have friends. I have a brain disorder that literally makes my life not worth living. So please stop telling me that there is nothing wrong with being “neurodiverse.” If I had COPD, would people say, “It’s fine. You’re just respiratorially diverse.”? No. They would recognize that there was something wrong with my lungs. I have ADD. It’s a brain disorder. It’s a disability. Calling it anything else or trying to cover it over with rainbows and glitter doesn’t change that. It’s just another way of being dismissive. Am I alone in feeling this way?
August 22, 2019 at 8:19 pm #126137
Wow, I really relate to what you’re saying. I too get exhausted with paperwork, telephone conversations, social events, etc. I can no longer work because it has gotten progressively worse with age. I’m only 57. I have other related conditions from anoxic brain trauma in my youth. It affects family life as well as Social and financial. I can do things, just more slowly because my focus is not dependable. All I can say is that for me, counseling helped refocus my life, and time management tools. I do small projects at home. This is the brain I have to work with, and though it limps along, and is the source of many an emotional breakdown, I am not dissuaded that I’m of no use to myself or others. Finding a passionate interest is the number one thing an ADD brain can grasp onto. God bless, and I look forward to reading what others have to say about this.
August 22, 2019 at 8:32 pm #126141
We’re exactly the same age! I looked into counseling but can’t afford it. Also looked into disability but I live in the cheapest apartments in town and disability wouldn’t even cover my rent, bc it pays a portion of your salary — which is low in my case because I can only manage 30 hours a week. I do have a passionate interest, but it’s recently been taken away. I can’t drive, and it involves being on the road every night. My driver dropped out, and I can’t imagine why, but it’s really hard to find people who want to spend all night rescuing rattlesnakes! Thanks for responding! I’m also interested to hear whether there are other people out there bothered by being dismissed as “neurodiverse.”
August 23, 2019 at 8:42 am #126197
I agree that it’s not helpful to be dismissive of the struggle. I think the movement to talk about neurodiversity is a movement toward acceptance of people with all different types of brains, not intended to be dismissive of the struggle at all (at least that’s the way I use the term and I know a few other parent advocates who intend the same).
I do want to point out though, that there’s a lot of power in how you yourself think about ADHD. Your thoughts govern the trajectory of your days and your life. I didn’t believe this for 40 years of my life. When I was finally desperate enough to be open to it, so much improved, including my stress level and my happiness. There is real power in staying positive as much as possible.
ADDitude Community Moderator, Parenting ADHD Trainer & Author, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism
August 23, 2019 at 9:28 am #126212
I think that sounds amazing and rare and very interesting, that you stay ups all night, rescuing rattle snakes.
I think that people who have intense interests in so many things, like people with this diagnosis do, accompanied by the drive, to immediately act upon those interest are bound to have some positive traits.
From the inside looking out, do you see how unique and interesting you sound? You are frustrated that you can’t act on the interest, because you can’t drive, but without the condition, would you have the drive to act on the interest?
August 23, 2019 at 1:26 pm #126275
Thanks to all who responded!I appreciate the perspective.
dduch, I also appreciate your kind words about my rattlesnake work. I’m far from the only one who does this work, so I can’t take credit for being unique. I guess I don’t worry about being unique or interesting. I just want to be effective. I was saving the lives of about 1000 animals every summer. WHich means, that’s approximately the number dead this summer because of my inability to drive. 🙁
August 23, 2019 at 3:21 pm #126311
That’s so frustrating. I’m sorry.
If I lived close and didn’t have children, I would totally drive you.
Have you tried your local humane society?
Those people are driven by their heart, and will to help living creatures. They might have a volunteer who is looking for a way to be involved, that would be perfect to help you drive.
I had to quit my meds when I was pregnant with my last child, and I didn’t feel safe driving, at all. When I went on my meds again, I was better. Could it be that you need your medication tweaked?
I wish I could help. I’m an animal lover, and I feel your frustration.
August 24, 2019 at 12:25 am #126357
Thank you so much! I have no access to health care so meds and counseling are out of reach for me, but it’s nice to know someone understands. Most peoplw don’t get it.
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