October is International ADHD Awareness Month, the Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder, but you are reading this article dedicated to the topic only now, because I could not finish it earlier, as I was asked. When we discussed the piece in our editorial meeting, a joke was made about it, and mentally I promised myself it wouldn’t happen. I would have tested myself. Instead, here I am, late again.
ADHD Disorder, How It Feels
It’s hard to explain to people what happened when I somehow let them down. I’m late again. I haven’t answered for weeks, or months, or I’ve forgotten to do so. Why don’t you wake up earlier? Don’t you start first? Don’t you answer right away? Why don’t you learn from your mistakes?
When it comes to this problem, people roll their eyes, and tend to downplay: everyone arrives late, nobody likes to work, everyone loses things … The fact that it seems like nonsense, a simple thing to deal with, and how it felt like a personal failure is part of the frustration. It’s a trouble that pays tenfold: not only with the bitterness of not having achieved one’s goals, but also with the shame of having disappointed others. You suffer the punishment that is inflicted on you in the moment, but also the potential loss of a promotion, a relationship, your dreams, time.
An example: at university, before having a diagnosis, I lost my education support check because I was late too many times. A teacher made me wait outside the classroom, while she explained without being overheard, and I felt the humiliation of having my classmates’ eyes on me and being pointed at as a bad example. She eventually went out and scolded me for not taking her course seriously. I was wasting money, her lessons and wasting my time. Every day I was anxious to arrive, I felt ashamed, and then I felt even worse for hurting her. But no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t change consistently.
ADHD, the neurological explanation
The neurologist Russell Barkleyone of the leading experts on this disorder, explains that “people with ADHD they have no sense of time because they have a frontal lobe deficit. “This part of the brain is smaller and the neurons function weaker. This leads to”temporal blindness”, That is, the inability to perceive the passage of time like the others, or what he calls” myopia of time … which prevents us from organizing ourselves over time “.