Emmet, diagnosed with ADHD at 17 in United States

Emmet
Age:
18
United States
Diagnosed at:
17

1. What made you decide to have your diagnosis?

Close friends asked if I had it, I researched more about it and made connections

2. What do you do for a living?

Work in a bakery

3. What is your ADHD presentation?

Combined

4. How were your school years?

Studying and completing homework assignments was a massive challenge for me through most of my school years

5. Looking back, what was an obvious ADHD trait in your childhood?

Hyperactivity

6. Was it difficult to get a diagnosis?

Got my diagnosis during my last year of high school. Throughout high school, I had been trying to convince my mom to let me get a diagnosis, she didn't believe that I had adhd and thought that I was just being lazy. It was extremely validating to finally get my diagnosis and it helped me understand who I was and not feel stupid for being the way that I am.

7. How did you prepare yourself for your diagnosis?

I talked to a close friend who had been helping me for a long time with this, and made a list of all of the adhd symptoms that I had shown to tell my doctor about.

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8. How did you feel right after getting your diagnosis?

I am very satisfied with my diagnosis, I had been trying to get a diagnosis for years and it was very validating to finally have it.

9. How do you feel about it now?

Getting my diagnosis earlier this year has significantly improved my life, I am more confident in who I am because I know and understand more about how my brain works and how to use it.

10. Do you think you "look like" the ADHD stereotype?

When I am around my friends and people that I am comfortable with, I think that I do look the the adhd stereotype, but when I am around people I don't know as well or in public, I often try to mask my adhd traits, which is a problem that I am still working on.

11. What are you struggling with because of your ADHD brain?

Time management, money management, organization, and unstable emotions are issues that I am struggling with right now because of my adhd

12. What are your ADHD strengths ?

When I become interested in something, I hyperfocus on it and am able to put more time and energy into it than others, I also get very excited and energetic about things that I am interested in, which makes me fun for my friends to be around and have fun with.

13. Did your ADHD diagnosis help you?

Yes, it made me more confident in who I am and helped me understand how my brain works

14. Do you feel your life could have gone the other way if you'd been diagnosed earlier?

I think that I would have had more success in school if I had been diagnosed earlier, because when I was diagnosed and given medication it significantly helped me for the remaining school year. I think that my depression would not be as severe if I had been diagnosed earlier, as a large part of it was from feeling stupid or useless from not knowing about my adhd.

15. What was your family/friends' reaction to your diagnosis?

My close friend who helped me through my journey of getting a diagnosis was very happy for me, my family was understanding and supportive as well.

16. Do you have any comorbid disorders or neurological conditions?

I have anxiety and depression, which are directly related to my adhd, my depression developed from worthlessness low self-esteem because of my bad grades in school, and not knowing why I wasn't able to do things that everyone else could.

17. Do you deal with anxiety?

Yes, I try to find somewhere that I don't feel overwhelmed and ground myself my finding something that I can focus on

18. Did people around you make you doubt yourself during your diagnosis journey?

Yes, my mom put in a serious effort to deny and invalidate my adhd for years before I was finally able to get a diagnosis

19. Do you ever doubt your diagnosis now?

Sometimes I will momentarily lose confidence in my diagnosis because i was denied for so long, but I am able to remind myself of it never doubt it

20. How has the diagnosis changed the way you live?

My diagnosis made me research more into adhd and how I can help my brain do things by organizing tasks in certain ways, setting timers to remember things

21. How do you feel about medication?

I understand that everyone has a different experience with medication and it doesn't help everyone, but in my experience it changed my life for the better. When i started my medication, I felt like I could actually focus on things in class, and could actually get assignments done. My medication helps me focus on tasks at work that I know I wouldn't be able to focus on otherwise, and has significant improved my life .

22. What was the thing that helped you most in your daily life? 

Before getting my diagnosis, having someone close to me who believed in me and helped me through things was the most helpful thing in my journey to get a diagnosis

23. What advice would you give someone who is wondering if they have ADHD?

It's important not to doubt yourself if you think you might have it. If you know someone with adhd, talk to them and ask about their experiences and compare them to yours, read information online from others with adhd, these things helped me a lot before my diagnosis

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