Life With ADD
I’ve always had problems trying to explain exactly what ADD feels like in my brain. I have an even harder time now because I used to be a strong believer in the idea that ADD was complete bullshit. A manufactured disorder to explain away kids and adults being irresponsible. Boy, was I wrong.
A little background on me. I was diagnosed when I was 8. My mother didn’t want me hopped up on drugs, so she ignored the recommendation by the doctor and let me be. I’m thankful for that. I don’t know if drugs would have helped or hurt me in the long run, but what I do know is that I succeeded with ADD and it likely was one of the reasons I was so successful in specific interests in my life.
I didn’t know any of this until about two years ago. I was writing for a major blog, and I noticed my head was very cloudy at times, but at others — I could write with wit and passion with ease. There were other oddities.
I actually forgot my son’s birthday when I took him to the doctor’s office the next day. It was embarrassing, but I was busy trying to multitask in my head a bunch of things I needed to do. As you might expect, I’ve had problems with dates my whole life. I’ve had problems remembering things that were told to me 5 minutes ago. I now have to write down everything or add it to a tasks list in my phone with reminders.
It gets much more extreme than those examples. In any case, if you’re a non-believer in how this disorder affects people, XKCD’s illustration above is a good starting point in understanding it at a simple level. ADD exists, people. We don’t want to use it as an excuse, but we probably forgot that we couldn’t.