Growing up, every school I went to asked my parents to take me to see doctors or mental health doctors.
I couldn’t concentrate, I wanted to be good, wanted to produce beautiful work, but I couldn’t.
Friends parents requested that their child didn’t sit or play with me.
Possibly the worst thing was, that I knew I was slightly odd, or that’s how I felt.
Teachers telling me off for messy work that I had tried my hardest to do was heartbreaking. So I stopped trying my hardest, actually, I stopped trying.
At 9 the paediatric doctor told my parents I was clinically depressed.. 9! They offered no further help.
My adult life has always been hectic. I can hold down a good job but can’t keep a clean house. I’m late for everything, forget appointments, hate filling in forms.
Depression has been a constant. Sometimes blazing out front, mostly controlled and quiet.
At 35, I paid a small fortune to see a private psychiatrist. My mum had saved every school report, every medical report, the psychiatrist asked me to forward them to him before our first meeting. I also had questionnaires to complete.
When I met him, his first sentence to me was that from reading my school reports it was clear that I had ADHD.
I take ritalin now. It has changed my life. I still can’t tidy up, the washing pile grows legs sometimes but I can stay at my work desk without having to take regular breaks. I am less compulsive. I am less up and down.
I understand that I wasn’t thick, I wasn’t naughty, I had ADHD.
I wasn’t lazy, I wasn’t rude, I had ADHD.
I am not ashamed of it.
I have ADHD.