the common misconceptions about adhd
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the common misconceptions about adhd

a little rant and insight from someone with firsthand experience

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the common misconceptions about adhd

I think the worst part about having adhd for me is the misconception about it. People always think it's just being "hyper" or "annoying", but it's not just that. It's far more than that. It's your brain going a million miles a second and you feeling like you're never going to be able to catch up to it. It's constantly stressing over the teeniest details even though you know it won't matter in the long run. It's getting mad over nothing & not knowing how to calm down. It's being told to "take a chill pill" over something you can't control. ADHD has so many different misconceptions out there, that people don't take it seriously. Although it's not as severe as autism or bipolar disorder, it is a mental illness. That's what people who don't have it don't realize. That it is real, and it is serious. It isn't just a little "quirk" in someone's personality. It's something that you have to learn to deal with every single day and believe me when I say, some days are hard. So many people out there believe that people with adhd aren't any different, and it's "stupid" to diagnose and medicate. I'm actual proof that ADHD is real, and it is something to take seriously.

When I was in elementary school I was in the gifted and talented program, I had always worked super hard for my grades, but there were so many instances that I just couldn't get something and I would get so frustrated with myself that I would start getting angry and end up crying. I remember it being a rollercoaster of emotions that adolescent me didn't know how to handle. My grades were even more of a rollercoaster, they would go from all A's to almost failing within two weeks. My mom couldn't figure out what was wrong with me and I didn't know the words to explain to her how I was feeling. I was gaining weight like nobody's business and that was causing me to have self-image issues, that stay with me to this very day.

When my school counselor finally suggested that my mom take me to a doctor to get tested for adhd I was so embarrassed. My thoughts were, who is she to think that I have something wrong with me? Yeah, I was hyper, but all kids are? Thankfully, my mom ignored my protests and took me to the doctor, where I was almost immediately diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, commonly known as ADHD.

Now being diagnosed with ADHD was only the beginning of a long, long process. It took years to finally get the right medication and dosage match up that worked with my body how it was supposed to. I would go to school during this "trial and error" period and my teachers would call my mom and say "Hey Hannah just isn't herself today, she's really on edge and snapping at everything" or "Hey Hannah is just a zombie today, I don't think this medicine is the one for her." It really was a team effort when we were trying to find the right one for me. I would get so frustrated and my emotions were out of control. I had people always telling me to "take one of my chill pills", which only caused me to get even more mad and resulted in me feeling like there was something wrong with me as a person, rather than just an imbalance in my brain. But when they say that hard work is worth the reward, I can't stress to you just how accurate that is for me in this case.

As soon as we found the right match, it was like a switch flipped inside of me. My grades skyrocketed, I lost all of that extra weight that I had been gaining, I wasn't on edge and angry with the world, I could finally handle my emotions. I remember thinking, finally I'm normal like all the other kids. Now what I didn't know then, is that I would still struggle, I would still have those days where I was mad at the world, but I knew how to handle it better because I could take a deep breath and step back and think about it.

All thanks to my school counselor, mom, teachers, doctors, and friends for going through those antagonizing years of finding the right medication for me. I'm now a college graduate at 21 years old, on the dean's list five out of my six semesters of undergrad, accepted into all of the law schools I applied for, and on my way to getting my master's degree.

ADHD isn't something to take lightly, ever. It's especially not something for you to make fun of your friends for when they have bad days, either. If I could change it, I personally wouldn't because it helped shape me into the person I am today. Although I do have bad days, today being one of those, which it what inspired me to write about this, it did help me learn how to process my emotions a different way that worked for me. So, I'm here to say that ADHD is hell to deal with and I'm proud of everyone who does it daily.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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