A Gift?

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A Gift? 2013-01-28T09:28:56+00:00
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  • #118721
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    Takingbacktyler
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    Post count: 24

    I recently came across a link that had a gentleman speaking about ADHD and how insulting it is ( basically) to call it a gift. I did alot of thinking about that. He also mentioned how people with it can succeed in spite of it rather than because of it.

    Here is my take after a few weeks of mulling it over- ADHD has made me a better person in alot of ways. I failed ALOT as a child in the things that I was ” suppose” to be good at ( school ETC.), That made me pretty humble. I guess I can say I really value the good things in my life because of all the bad I experienced. I can be a complete pain the because of that I also know who my true friends are. People dont tend to hang around with me out of convenience.

    Those are my few positive takes.

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    #118724
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    shutterbug55
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    Hello Tyler,

    I am one of those who thinks ADD is a curse. How do I know? You can return gifts.

    For me, there is very little up-side to this condition. It has affected every aspect of my life. I fail so much at so many things, there are a lot of things I don’t even try any more, because I already know how it will end. I am smart, but you would never know it from my school work, or my work work. Brains? Sometimes they are a curse as well. I am aware enough that I know how this condition has affected me and I can see how it affects those around me. Yet I am unable to do anything about it.

    Since I know I disappoint people constantly with my oversights and forgetfulness, I try too hard to please them, and end up a living doormat.

    I am never happy, never at peace, never content. I can’t tell you how much money I have lost through impulsive business decisions. It’s like one part of my head watches the other make the mistakes, while being unable to stop it.  The list goes on.

    I spend a lot of time, energy and money with people who are trying to put the pieces of my life back together. Blessing? I say curse. Lives are not in shambles due to blessings.

    I watch people breeze through life without a care in the world. I know they have problems somewhere, I know they have problems, but those are insignificant compared to mine and I would trade with them in a New York minute. I have a cosmic “Kick Me” sign on my back, because I am a lightning rod for disaster. Sooner or later the mistakes I constantly make add up to a disaster that nobody can ignore and I am on to my next former place of employment.

    I try to see the positive, but today I just can’t.

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    #118725
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    Fabulous
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    Post count: 173

    I suspect you were watching clips of the Barkley lecture at CADDAC (given a couple of years ago)? That is a depressing lecture.

    Here are a few things I wouldn’t change:

    – Hyperfocus – I like it. I don’t want to get rid of it.

    – My ‘difference’ is a great asshole-filter. People who hate me or target/bully me because they sense my difference are not people I would want in my life even if I wasn’t different.  (Sounds like we have this in common, @talkingbacktyler)

    – Being neurotypical is highly overrated. The ability to see things differently is *sometimes* an advantage. I’ll resist the urge to write 5000 words on this topic since I am sure many of you know what I mean already.

    I agree with Barkley that we can’t go around saying we’re gifted and expect to also ask for help. ADHD is associated with serious and wide-reaching negative outcomes. But I for one don’t feel like it is *all* bad, especially if you get diagnosed, accept your diagnosis, and find ways to get it on a leash.

     

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    #118727
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    Takingbacktyler
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    I mostly agree shutterbug. I am real sorry to hear your having a bad day. I know how that goes.
    I suppose you can call it luck but I have had some things go right lately and they all seemed tied to past failures. In my life i have found that my calling is giving to others. It makes me happy and truly is my purpose in life. I guess i see that disccovery as happening only through my sympathy for others due to my own failings. I think if i didnt have ADHD and was born into a very rich and succesful family giving would still be my purpose in life but i never would have found it.
    Maybe i am spinning it into my own positive view but it really is how i feel.

    Fabulous– I dont see the physical or mental atributes as a gift thats for sure. On a very different but somewhat related example Nick Vujic comes to mind. Born with no arms and no legs. Throug being born that way he found his true calling which is being a motivational speaker and helping people around the world. Maybe if he wasent born with that horrible affliction he would have had a desk job, lived a mediocore life and never have found his ” calling”.
    Maybe this is a reach.

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    #118731
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    Patte Rosebank
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    I’ve said it elsewhere on this site, but “gift” is the perfect word for what ADHD is.  This is because both “gift” and ADHD have 2 very different meanings, depending on how you look at them.

     

    In English, a “gift” is a good thing.  It’s a present, a bonus, a talent.  ADHD has so many positive attributes…once you learn to recognize them, and how to work with them.

    For example, we may be easily distracted by shiny objects, but that means we often find money on the ground, when we’re out walking!

    Last year, I found a £5 note on the floor at Heathrow, a $10 bill on the ground near a supermarket, and (a month later) another one on the sidewalk outside a pub, and a Toonie on New Year’s Eve.  Plus numerous other dimes, Loonies, and Toonies.

     

    In German, “gift” means “poison”.  Something that will destroy life.  That’s what ADHD is when it’s undiagnosed, untreated, sapping your energy, and making you miserable.

    I’d had so many years of that, until I was diagnosed, 3 years ago (at age 41).  And it was truly poisonous.

    Looking back, I’ve come so far since then, but I still have bloody awful days, when I have to really struggle to remind myself that, overall, things are a lot better now.  And that, everyone will have good days and bad days.  Eventually, they all balance out.

    However, I must admit that, when I’m in the depths of despair, and someone says to me what I’ve  just said to you—my natural impulse is to tell them to stuff their advice somewhere incredibly painful!

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    #118735
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    Fabulous
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    Oh, @shutterbug55, hang in there! I hope you are getting more sleep now?

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    #118739
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    trashman
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    A gift is something one might ask for, or wish for. does  any one know anyone ever asked for this adhd gift?

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    #118741
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    shutterbug55
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    Hi, All. Thank you (again) for the great great comments. One positive thing about ADD, we can empathize with a lot of people.

    Sleep is something that is very far away right now. I am with a sick friend from my days in the service. He is dieing, right now, and we are taking turns standing watch, until the end. There are only two of us left from my old unit, now. Just myself and my first shirt. I do hope there will be someone to watch over me, when it is my turn. Weird things we think about and I have lots of time to think tonight.

    Gift or no gift?

    I think because I am working through so many years of stuff, I get bogged down in the what has gone wrong, and not the what has gone right. There has been a lot that has gone right or I wouldn’t be here, computer in lap, tapping away at the keys.

    I like what trashman said. Maybe a different way to put it trash, would be ” If ADD were a gift, why don’t people ask for it?”

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    #118743
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    Anonymous
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    I wouldn’t call it a gift, so much as it is a, “different, less common orientation,” to the world. I’d like to think I’m smart, but that’s when ADD steps in and I’m the person who ends up surprising people with my problems when they become visible, a la, “This isn’t like you…” (I was diagnosed with ADD-I, so my issues tend to be more stealthy). I tend to notice things that other people don’t, or more accurately, I see things differently than most others. So I have a certain kind of insight that may be seen as a, “gift,” because it’s less common.

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    #118766
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    Bibliophile
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    Post count: 169

    I believe this is the video that you are referring to:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c09aZkzyzgE

    I must say that I agree with its creator 100%. I have seen little benefit from having a quick (not detail oriented) mind and poor impulse control. It has impaired the ability to maintain friendships, lost friendships due to impulsive comments, made working in many professions extremely difficult or impossible, etc. This is not a gift. That being said, it is who I am. I would give it up in a heartbeat if it were possible. Also, “this gift” of ADHD comes with so many pleasant comorbidities. In my own case, anxiety and dysthymia.

    While I am very happy some people have found a situation where there symptoms are mitigated to the point where they are successful and happy, I resent them attributing that situation to ADHD.

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    #118767
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    Bibliophile
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    I forgot to add the wonderous restlessness that ADHD brings to the party as well. As well as the perseverating nature of hyperfocus, especially when it kicks in at the wrong time or on something tangential or irrelevant to what I need to get done.

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    #118783
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    Takingbacktyler
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    Wow. This was alot of great stuff to read. Thank you all for the input.

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    #118814
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    Wgreen
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    Post count: 445

    Here’s one more, just a few minutes long: http://jeffsaddmind.com/undiagnosed-adult-adhd-the-silent-killer-of-hopes-dreams-14854.htm

    I apologize if this has been previously posted.

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    #118815
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    Phil, Just Phil.
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    Gift…

    Liability…

    A little from column A, a little from column B…

    that is why it is so hard to pin down.  You see things others don’t, but you miss things others see.

    you can be both brilliant and dreadful given the right combination of environment, mental state, stimuli and possibly even, phase off the moon.  We just don’t know enough yet.

    the whole point of the Gift mentality is to provide a positive mental image for those of us who have it, not to beat linears over the head with how much better we are.  They keep the world running, it is set up for them, but without us they just plod along doing the same old thing.

    we provide that flash of left field, out of the box thinking that gives the exponential increases.  But it is a bit like a person with bipolar, we can be very high, but we can also be very low and actually have a negative effect on society.  Life is a bell curve and just like  find more men at the 2 extremes (most successful, powerful and absolute bottom of the rung) people with AD(H)D  will sit in these 2 extremes.  It is possible for the rest of them to be at the extremes, but a higher percentage of us will be there because that is how we are programmed.

     

    i realise the gender comment above may be contentious, but it all comes down to risk and reward.  100 may take the risk, less than 10 will get the reward.  There are always exceptions, but generally speaking I have found this to be true.

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    #119308
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    Robbo
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    I like what Howie Mandell said about ADHD. “If it’s a gift, I’d like to return it”

    Yep, it’s been painful and terrific. “Terrific” is a strange word to use, huh? It’s not necessarily bad, or good. It’s a heck of a lot of entertainment, that’s for sure. It’s Terrific!.

    I also like

    ” If ADD were a gift, why don’t people ask for it?”

    Very good point. I sometimes wonder how many folks come here just to point and laugh?. I wonder a lot… It’s a curse of the ADHD imagination.

    I tend to throw a positive spin onto my struggles because it’s always been my experience that optimism beats pessimism hands down each and every time.

    We need to be honest about what we’re thinking, and how that makes us feel. Optimism is just plain more comfortable. I’m much more fun to be around when I’m optimistic.

    In the end, if I did have the option of “returning this gift” I don’t think I would. There used to be a poll on this site before all the major (good) changes took hold. It asked us “if you could return your ADHD. To make it so you never had to struggle with it ever again. Would you?” I say no every time. Most of the poll said they would return it… I think… never could understand that. I’m still dumbfounded about it.

    I just never wanted to “fit in” as much as so many of my actions have seemed to imply. Of course we “want to” fit it. But most of the time I don’t feel like I did. So I make the best of it. Sorta burried the idea that I EVER wanted to fit in. It’s less painful if I say “I never really wanted to fit it anyway”. Sometimes the truth is easier to just ignore. It get’s much smaller, and weaker. Later on, when I start to feel like I do actually fit in in some places. It’s hard to reconsile… It’s just plain awkward!… foreign. Strange indeed. Mostly cuz I’m strange. Stange indeed. But I also know that I’m not all that unique. I just have to accept the fact that I’m like a lot of the other ADDers around this camp. I’m special.
    Priceless.

    With an optimistic attitude. My core thinking eventually catches up with my attitude, and I end up fairly happy. Happen enough… “happy enough” is good enough.

    R-

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