ALS, ADD, I Attract Acronyms

Post 44 of 84

While I’m putting so much out there about myself, I thought I would share something else that has been in my way. I have ADD. I attract acronyms apparently. Although ADD will never kill me, like ALS will, it sure did hold me back from achieving many things.

I never repeated a grade but school was always hard for me because I truly could not pay attention. I wasn’t diagnosed until my teens. I remember wanting to pay attention, but it was extremely difficult. My grade school teachers always told my Mother I was day dreaming, I wasn’t trying, or I was disrupting the class. I would go in at the beginning of the day saying to myself I would listen to every word, and I wholeheartedly tried. But people shifting in their seat, something outside of the window, a sneeze, something always distracted me. Then I would suddenly realize a lot of time had passed and I had no idea what had been said. What page are we on? Wait, When did we stop reading and switch to math? Why didn’t I see or hear this happening? I had no idea what I was supposed to be doing. I would blurt that question out and be in trouble for intentionally acting out and disrupting the class when I wasn’t. My mind had been far away. I began to think, maybe I am stupid. Why can’t I will myself to pay attention? 

By the time I was diagnosed, I was frustrated, angry, and rebellious. I was put on Cylert in my teens, It has since been taken off the market in the US. I didn’t take it long. I had dealt with enough of failing at something I knew I was capable of, only to be told it was because I wasn’t trying or I didn’t care. This came mostly from my teachers. I know there are many great teachers who would have picked up and probably could have reached out and helped me sooner. I was hoping for that. It just didn’t happen with me. So what they told me became truth. I wasn’t meeting my academic potential because I didn’t care anymore.

I started skipping classes and getting detention, the only enjoyment I would get was surprising a teacher with something I knew that they didn’t expect me to know. I was so angry and felt like they saw me as stupid. In my young thinking I was proving to them I was not stupid. To them I was just reinforcing their opinion that I was rebellious and rude. It really wasn’t the case. I deep inside wanted them to say, you really can do this, and well, I want to invest more time in helping you. I never heard those words. They thought I needed discipline and my Mother was told what a trouble maker I was. After all the years of trying, I stopped. I started living up to their expectations of me with a vengeance.

The course of my life was changed forever. I did finally get my life back to a good place, but as I heard my whole life, I never did reach my academic potential.

ADD is better understood today, and a lot more children get intervention early enough, but there are still way too many who fall through the cracks. Sometimes even with the best of teachers. They are overwhelmed more than ever, and I’m not bashing them. I do realize now that the school system did failed me. I did have some teachers who really hurt me along the way, I would love to speak with them now. Some deserve an apology from me, and some need to apologize to me.

Now, If I want or need to learn something, nobody teaches me better than myself. I get me. 

This touches the surface of the history of me, one of many children falling through the cracks because of ADD.

Parents please educate yourself. There is too much information out there to not be aware now. My Mother didn’t have this information. You don’t have to drug your child either if you are against that. Their future depends on you being aware and willing to learn how you can help and following through.

Until next time, take care,







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This article was written by April


jennimac77December 7, 2013 at 8:19 amReply

I wonder what the correlation is between ADD and INTJ temperaments. My husband is off-the-charts INTJ, and what could be called an attention deficit is usually more accurately a state of hyper-awareness. INTJ’s are extremely detail-oriented, a characteristic that many times results in prioritizing the attention given to a plethora of simultaneous events or information streams. For example, if we meet a person who has a speech disorder, my husband doesn’t hear a word they say, because he’s focused on trying to figure out what’s going on with their lips/tongue/teeth. Until his mind assimilates that information and dissects it satisfactorily, WHAT they are saying is secondary, and thus gets missed. On the other hand, I may make note of the speech impediment, but I don’t see the myriad of interplaying variances to the extent that my husband sees them. Thus, I have no problem focusing on what I see as the primary event: what the person is saying. I think this is also the reason my husband has always had a hard time understanding accents. Do you find that to be problematic for you as well?

April AprilDecember 8, 2013 at 2:37 amReply

I kind of see where you’re coming from, but the only correlation I really see between ADD and INTJ is the genes you inherit. That’s all nature. Nurture plays a big part in how these manifest in a person in my opinion. I’m not sure I agree with ADD being a state of hyper-awareness. A person with ADD can be hyper-focused on something to the point of tuning all things around them out at times. Unfortunately, I can’t do this at will. I don’t really have a problem understanding accents. The effort to understand a speech impediment, the desire to understand the person is something I may become over-focused on, keeping me from doing something I’m supposed to be doing or it could work the other way. I’m more often extremely focused on detail but my train of thought is so easily interrupted due to being so easily distracted because of ADD. This causes great frustration. The two definitely aren’t a good match. Lucky me!