Confessions of an ADHDer
They say honesty is the best policy right?
These are my confessionssssss *usher voice*
So I watched the film ‘Confessions of a Shopaholic’ on Disney+ on my flight to Barcelona a few weeks ago. It’s such an excellent and funny film, it’s worth a watch if you haven’t seen it!
The movie inspired this newsletter and I was typing away on my phone, mid-afternoon, 1/4 through my glass of sangria.
In true ADHD fashion, I abandoned writing this. But now that I’m back in London, let’s get it started in here! wooohooooo
Shall we begin?
Before I was diagnosed with ADHD, I was convinced I had early on set dementia. Back in 2016, I went to tell my GP that I thought I was losing my memory. She gave me an on-the-spot memory test where I had to repeat a few easy words and say them backward and I was able to,
She said I was fine and that maybe I was just disoriented. Very underwhelming.
Fast forward to 2018, I went seeking an ADHD assessment referral, went through the process, and eventually got diagnosed in 2020 with ADHD combined type.
Ok, this is where I get honest. Of course, I was relieved at my diagnosis, but the thought of having to take meds and then work on myself in order to better manage my ADHD sounded exhausting.
I thought, if it was a brain tumor affecting my thinking or behavior, the doctors could at least cut it out and I’d be fine! For those of you who watch Grey’s Anatomy, this is exactly what happened with Dr. Amelia Shepherd, her brain tumor caused her to act impulsively and make questionable decisions. Once it was cut out, she was ‘normal-ish’ again.
BUT! I’m glad I don’t have one, but I did think about it, and it’s the first time I’m admitting it. Is this too much? Probably.
I’ve also learned to work with my ADHD brain and not resent myself so much.
Spreading love: If you have a brain tumor, I wish you a speedy recovery and send you love and light.
Friendships and Relationships
I have been a shitty communicator, but I’m working on it. Like I actually had no idea how bad I was, pre-ADHD diagnosis.
Let me unpack.
‘Out of sight, out of mind’ is really on brand for me. If I haven’t seen someone recently I almost forget their existence. And when they text or call me, it can feel like a bit of a chore to respond. It’s like my brain sorts them into the ‘archive’ folder in my left brain.
When I got diagnosed with ADHD. I started connecting to the wonderful community and just learning things about our brains. I realized that people in the ADHD community communicated quite similarly to me! I asked my friends (the ones that remained) and family how it made them feel and they told me how they really felt! My bad.
I also like meeting new people so I have way too many interactions across apps, on my phones, and in person which is somewhat unhelpful. So it makes it difficult to invest time and do life with people that I’d like to.
Try to respond to people instantly or give them a holding response
Send voice notes when texting feels like a chore
Let people know that I’ll be busy or tied up for weeks/dates
Book meet-ups in my calendar so I don’t forget and I’ve committed to it
If you wanna read about my commitment issues, I wrote a newsletter almost 2 years ago that you can read here.
This is why I don’t do long-distance relationships and broke up with two exes when they left the country and when I went to study/live abroad. I don’t even think I can date someone in another city, I tried it last year.
Should I get a grip?
Relationship with money
Money, Money, Money, Moneyyyyyy….. MONEYYYY!
So I haven’t figured out whether I’m just careless, carefree or if it’s my ADHD coupled with undiagnosed Dyscalculia.
I have never been great at money management. I took accounting and finance, financial management, and international finance classes at University. I also did a short stint working in wealth management.
I know, I am hopeless.
Maybe it’s also me growing up with the bible verse ‘The love of money is the root of all evil’ is engrained in my head.
Are you done with my excuses?
Impulsive shopping, ADHD Tax, not taking the time to read and understand credit card terms, impulsively investing in fads or flop companies like Deliveroo (yes I was the dummy that did), investing a lot in getting the ADHD flash cards manufactured, and me being VERY generous by giving money away and buying gifts for people ARE THE TRUE CULPRITS.
But I am going to start budgeting come 2023. I’ll be sure to share my template with you and what works for me. I also plan on being more frugal:
Less ordering out and cooking more
Stop being an outfit repeater like Lizzie McGuire was accused of (the real Disney fans know)
Stopping myself from making impulsive purchases - I’ll find a way to remain accountable
Instead of buying gifts, get discount experiences on Groupon or send love and light
I think I’m done. This could’ve been more scandalous, maybe I’ll do a part 2?
In all seriousness, most of this was hard to write. But I love that I’m able to share and connect with a community that doesn’t judge and can relate.
Now ADHDers, what are your confessions?
Rach with ADHD
Oh snap to all these. I want to increase my savings and instead i go oh ‘pretty’ or ‘ new’ or ‘finally, this will solve that’.
I hadn’t thought about it in terms of delaying my gratification. Thanks for a great post and to Tiera and Firma too.
OMG , this article definitely hit home for me!
ADHD Tax is so real, I struggle a lot with "out of sight, out of mind" with both people and things and the impulsivity around buying and rushing to do things and then being disappointed when it does not turn out how I wanted. Also, I struggle a lot with friendships, so now I don't even have close friends; I am rambling so I'll stop but thank you so much for writing this, I felt seen.
Definitely, also trying to curate habits that will aid me with some of these tendencies.