Michelle, 24, advised by a friend to ask for a diagnosis

Michelle
Age:
26
United States
Diagnosed at:
24

1. What made you decide to have your diagnosis?

I had friends with ADHD point out to me I might have it and it would be beneficial to talk to someone

2. What do you do for a living?

Caregiver

3. What is your ADHD presentation?

Combined

4. How were your school years?

Studying was difficult, reading comprehension was even worse; having to reread the same paragraph over and over because you can’t remember what you just read.

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

TALKING TOO MUCH!! And waaay too fast.

6. Was it difficult to get a diagnosis?

It was difficult because the first professional I saw (a therapist) told me that I probably didn’t have ADHD because my “energy levels sounded normal for a child”. I went to someone else for a second opinion and also voiced concern about the last person I spoke to about this, and they (my current therapist) agreed that ADHD is often unnoticed because of stereotypes and that I do in fact have ADHD.

7. How did you prepare yourself for your diagnosis?

I spoke to friends who have ADHD and I did a lot of research to learn more about it.

✨ If you are wondering too if you have ADHD, check out my ADHD Self Assessment Workbook

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

I felt relieved that I had a concrete reason as to why my brain does some of the things it does. I felt so much better knowing I wasn’t alone in this struggle. The traits that I emulate aren’t traits of being lazy or stupid, my brain is just neurodivergent!

9. How do you feel about it now?

Still good that I have a tangible way to approach it, but that being said some days are hard. I get frustrated sometimes knowing “it’s just the way my brain works” and I feel like I can’t change anything about my situation (but I realize that’s not true!).

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

I talk fast…and a lot…so maybe?

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

Time management, productivity, conversations can be embarrassing when I constantly forget what I was just talking about

12. What are your ADHD strengths ?

I am very detail oriented, immaculately organized, and I am very empathetic ☺️

13. Did your ADHD diagnosis help you?

Yes 100000%, even though some days I struggle I would SO rather dance with a devil I know than one I don’t.

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

I definitely feel I could have avoided some emotional pain, I would’ve understood things about myself better instead of accepting it as being stupid/lazy/annoying.

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

My mom didn’t fully understand lol she’s a boomer and figured ADHD was the fidgeting and “SQUIRREL” traits and nothing more, but she’s always willing to listen and learn. Mt friends all just say “well that makes sense” 😂 but they’re very supportive and I may have even helped another friend get diagnosed!

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

Social anxiety, was depressed through my teenage years

17. Do you deal with anxiety?

I do a lot of self talk and reminding myself that whatever I’m going through is valid and temporary

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

Definitely not, most people don’t even know that much about ADHD so they don’t have anything negative to say against it

19. Do you ever doubt your diagnosis now?

Absolutely not lol

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

It’s changed the way I think about myself and interact with people

21. How do you feel about medication?

I’m open to it but haven’t explored the option yet

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

Having people who understand that I can talk to and ask questions

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

If you know me, talk to me!! Lol but for real, do research or think if you know anyone with ADHD and ask them things before going to a professional. It makes sure you feel confident when you go in, considering some professionals don’t know how to properly diagnose ADHD

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