Irene, diagnosed with ADHD at 29 in United States

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United States
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1. What made you decide to have your diagnosis?

I constantly was unable to keep track of my life- especially when it came to organizing for work. It was affecting my ability to function well and I had enough.

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2. What do you do for a living?

Refugee Relief

3. What is your ADHD presentation?

I don't know

4. How were your school years?

studying took me a long time to focus- I’d often have to go to a 3rd space to think clearly

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

Forgetting where I put things and emotional dysregulation

6. Was it difficult to get a diagnosis?

In some ways, yes. There were times I said “I think I have adhd” but I would tell myself I was making it up or some people would say “everyone things this have ADHD” or some comment like this- which prevented me from looking further into a diagnosis. But then when I finally got someone to listen and I took an assessment, they confirmed my diagnosis

7. How did you prepare yourself for your diagnosis?

Google! Hahahaha

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

Relieved and also grieved? Relieved to have language and grieved to have not known for so long

9. How do you feel about it now?

It’s a new diagnosis so I’m learning- but I feel so seen by accounts like this one!

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

Sort of?

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

Getting things done and focusing on tasks

12. What are your ADHD strengths ?

Not sure to be honest

13. Did your ADHD diagnosis help you?

Yes it was so good to know!

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

I think it could have helped so much- but growing up there was a stigma that may have gotten in the way

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

“Oh I could have told you that” or “I’m so glad you know!” Honestly very supportive

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

Anxiety and depression

17. Do you deal with anxiety?

Yes- learning to communicate and getting lots of body movement in!

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


19. Do you ever doubt your diagnosis now?

Not at all

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

I am aware and try to set myself up for success with new organization systems- trying new things out

21. How do you feel about medication?

Not sure- I just got put on some meds- we’ll see how it goes

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

Giving myself time to get things done

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

Learn more about ADHD- what it is, what it isn’t. What is pop culture vs actual diagnoses. How it presents differently in people, etc. and ask a professional for help!

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