Ooh shiny…


emotionwheelI was diagnosed with ADHD the year I turned 40. Now, this is not the worst news I’ve ever received, but it was one that brought on a spectrum of emotions. Two of which were relief, and anger. I was relieved, because it really explained a lot about some of the issues I’ve had for as long as I can remember. However, there was anger, from years of hearing that I was being rude because I wasn’t paying attention, or the countless number of times I got in trouble for wiggling in my seat, or ‘zoning out’ during a conversation. I eventually worked through the emotions, and learned to embraced this part of me.

Living with someone who has ADHD/ADD can be frustrating, at least until you gain some understand, even then, it may still be frustrating but hopefully you will be able to give them a little leeway. So, let me enlighten you on some quirks you may be seeing in a loved one (adult or child):

  • Interrupts conversations
  • Impatient
  • Constantly in motion
  • Struggles to follow instructions
  • Difficulty focusing/easily distracted
  • Forgets things
  • Switches from one activity to another

Those are just a few traits you might see, the list is actually a bit longer, and not everyone has every symptom. Also, they symptoms can differ between children and adults, and apparently from what I’m now seeing, it can also look different between males and females*.

It can be crazy busy in our minds, so many different thoughts, and images going on all at once, it is really hard to focus. The first time I saw the Meme describing a woman’s mind, and I remember thinking to myself, “Yeah, now take that and multiply it by 100, and you have me”. I’m pretty sure there are many who can relate.

a woman's mind

Now I could go on for pages about situations I have dealt with as a child and as an adult, that were clear signs of an issue. I could also go on about any number of coping mechanisms I’ve used over the years to compensate for the areas I struggle in. I’m sure I will cover a good portion of these over time, in various posts, but for today I’m just going to talk about what my mom use to call Speaking Candy**.

diagramHaving a conversation with me often requires either a diagram or a road map. I tend to talk in circles, because something said in the conversation will spark something that for whatever reason, I feel is important, and then I go from there. It is rare that I do not get back on topic, but the number of side trips will vary. I have also been known to give a bit more detail than is truly warranted for the topic. Let’s just say, I cannot make a long story short, easily***.

Those with whom I have regular conversations, have either accepted that this is just how I communicate and have taken the time to learn how to speak Candy, or they have ADHD/ADD (or someone close to them who does), and it is just part of a typical conversation for them. Either way, I have been very blessed with many people who care enough about me to actually deal with it.

Learning to understand, accept,  and live with ADHD has been and still is a journey. One that is frustrating, challenging, and often times exciting. It is also a topic that I will more than likely mention often, even if it isn’t intentionally. 😉

the more you know

*I haven’t read all there is on this – so I can neither confirm or deny if I agree with this
**A phrase I’ve adopted for may of my loved ones who have difficulty communicating in what others consider a ‘normal’ way
***Which has actually been extremely helpful in creating very detailed training documents

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