Go public, or keep it a secret?

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Go public, or keep it a secret? 2010-12-13T04:00:09+00:00

The Forums Forums I Just Found Out! Other Go public, or keep it a secret?

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  • #88782
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    billd
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    Post count: 913

    The thing that brought this to mind was the t-shirt – the one for sale here, AD/HD with the lightening bolt – the rock style t.

    I think it’s really cool! Love it. And am considering buying one – or more. However, that brings up another – wearing in public, AT WORK, and so on………..

    So, do people “go public” and freely admit it, talk about it, tell the boss, co-workers, gee, even friends or family????????

    If you go “public”, say you tell friends and family (familit likely already knows! HA) what are the reactions? Is it good, or bad? Was it worth it? Advantages/pros or cons? Was there negative impact?

    If you keep it a secret – what, if any, is the motivation there?

    I REALLY want to know. For one thing, I think it’s time the world know the truth, another – it might help us all find more help – GOOD help, smart help, not just that “you need help and counseling to be more normal”.

    there have been episodes of shows, such as Star Trek, TNG where similar topics have come up – where the “person” considered “not normal” was forced into treatment to be more “normal” and yet they liked who they were, and the treatments were for the wrong reason. Anyway, here I go again – the never ending, forever veering left and right story.

    Back to my original thinking –

    Tell co-workers? Boss? Family or friends? Or not? Why or why not?

    Afraid to wear such a shirt in public, or just fine with it hoping to get the RIGHT kinds of attention?

    I LOVE what Rick and Patrick have done, and for me, I love and respect them even MORE for it. They are even more cool in my eyes. I’ve always wanted to meet them, now more than ever. Thanks to them, maybe I can finally deal with myself. (in a good way)

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    #97636
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    Anonymous
    Post count: 14412

    I’ll take a shot at this. As you know, I try not give advice but share my thoughts and experience and maybe that will assist others in choosing their path…so here goes. 60, ADD (knew since I was 30) & retired.

    I tend to be very private with what is inside me billd. I do not wear my heart on my sleeve, it is precious to me and I don’t want to risk people stepping on it. I have some very very close friends and family that get to see and hear that depth of sharing. I have also belonged to a couple of groups (support groups) that are safe places to share and not be judged. That is their purpose, kinda like this site.

    If I look at the simple risk vs benefit of exposing my inner self, my soul to the general public, I find the risk far out weighs the potential for benefit. Not to generalize but people can be callous and hurtful, indifferent maybe not even intentionally, but……??? What purpose would exposing serve?? I found that looking for compassion and empathy in workplace is hmmmmm……better look else where. People work for mercenary reasons, they may tell you something else, but ….stop paying them and see!!!

    Keeping it a secret ?? Hmm no I don’t keep it “a secret” either, I am not hiding anything from anybody, nor am I ashamed, nor do I feel less than others at all!!! It is really none of their business!!! It’s for me. I do not find the workplace a good place for open heart surgery. People freakout with that level of information and sharing. Also the work place is a bit of a “dog eat dog” environment it is competitive so……will I be vulnerable there?????

    Having said that, I am kind of an extrovert, funny, laughing, humorous guy, not shy at all, I’ll talk the ear off a dead dog. My ADD gives me a wacky perspective that I share with people, they think I’m nuts……but they like it. I love social interaction, fun banter. I work part time now that I’m retired with the general public (sales and design) and you know what as a sales guy ADD is one of my best friends!! I am damn good at it!! So the answer is I am who I am….but I behave too. I try stay just this side of …opps too far!!!

    best I can…………hahahaha…I do slip.

    I hope that helps billd……

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    #97637
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    billd
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    guess I’m so totally different from you – I see very few similarities…. the very few ADD folks I do know in my life are very un–private. Examples include my mother, and the son of a co-worker here. They let you know what’s on their emotional minds.

    But I was wondering what other folks do……. what reactions they got, or if they keep it inside, why, etc.

    BTW – my work place might be different – Vocational Rehabilitation…….. ;-) I’m surrounded by social workers.

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    #97638
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    Anonymous
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    I recently found out I have ADD myself, and the one person I absolutely had to tell it to was my mother. Nobody knew me better as a child, and when I told her she said it was an epiphany for her, it finally explained my behavior for her. Of course my wife already knows, so it was not as much of a revelation for her. I’m really not shy about telling people I have ADD, although I would probably draw the line at bosses. I figure I’m learning to deal with it, and it’s not my problem if they can’t deal with it.

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    #97639
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    billd
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    Post count: 913

    I don’t think I worded my reply to “toofat” very kindly – hope it’s not taken wrong. Just seems beyond AD/HD we’re different personality types.

    Interesting thought on the boss – but was wondering if anyone found a boss that at least gave some thought to it, and at least attempted to try to understand – if nothing else, as an explanation for some things.

    I MAY have an advantage at work – beings what we do is try to get people fitted into jobs they are suited for, and use technology and adaptive equipment where needed, etc. but I’d like to hear from others on their experiences and their preferences. Good and bad….

    I would suspect that my mother knows, since she herself has said she’s ad/hd, and knows my youngest son is as well. Clumsy, and she called me the “absent-minded professor” when I was growing up.

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    #97640
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    Anonymous
    Post count: 14412

    Hey not a prob billd……..facts about the workplace. Remember managements purpose is to obtain the most productivity from people that they can. If there is a person who cannot produce up to capacity…. they can/will sometimes provide some training to assist them, mostly in the business administration capacity. The training is intended to increase production!!! If the individual is still not up to production requirements then….other alternatives will likely be looked at. That philosophy goes up the chain…. the 1st level manager’s production is scrutinized by the 2nd level and the2nd level by the 3rd level and so on. They are all scrutinized against productivity numbers…they may say otherwise, but at review time it’s the numbers column that gets looked at. Looking for a manager today who is willing to accommodate/understand any person who is not accomplishing the tasks at hand, for what ever reason is (pardon my cynicism) unlikely. Too much pressure today to produce produce produce!!!

    Hey…..that is not all, managers, everywhere..that would be generalization I’m not willing to make. I’m saying on average that is what the workplace is made up of. So I’m not sure what purpose there would be in sharing the ADD issue, I worry it may actually do more harm in the long run??? Like I’ve said looking for empathy, and emotional support in the workplace would not be my first choice.

    Great Alternative….if your employer has an EAP program…they can be great programs, providing a wealth of CONFIDENTIAL services!! I made great use of my corps. EAP, they found me a great counselor, paid counseling bills for years. Outside of EAP, most (and I stress most) workplace environments are populated by people who are competing to get ahead and their purpose there is mercenary…if you don’t believe that just stop paying them and see what happens!!

    food for thought?? hope it helps..

    toofat

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    #97641
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    Anonymous
    Post count: 14412

    Hey just saw some posts on the “Work Place” thread on this very subject that have some great sharing success stories..the above is my take only. So, if folks are looking for more information about sharing your ADD with your boss…..you might look there too for some good info.

    toofat

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    #97642
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    billd
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    Post count: 913

    I did actually decide to bite the bullet and share it with him. After all, we ARE vocational rehabilitation.

    His first reaction was to try to find my reviews, and what we call “PDQ” and goals statements. He asked if we needed to modify the goals any to reflect all this. Meaning – to make things more realistic in a case of ADD. Within reason, he seems willing to tune things to make things work better. Doesn’t hurt that I am the top technical person there, the only one who really knows av and security inside and out, and have proven myself on the network and network administration………

    The agency administrator has suggested the employee assistance program as well , as a place to start.

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    #97643
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    Anonymous
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    I am totally public about adhd. I don’t think it’s anything to be embarassed about. I am actually really proud to have adhd and to have come to the place I have come. I also think that by being public with it, that it helps people understand me a little better. You also find out who your friends are really quickly. I dont’ think it’s a negative, I think it’s a positive thing. I also want to be a leader and lead others who are struggling. If I can help someone else out I will. I am circled with all types of artists because of it, who are talented in every way. It can be a positive thing, but you can’t fight it. You have to embrace it.

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    #97644
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    billd
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    Post count: 913

    Maybe coming out into the light will help others who are confused, don’t know what to do, or need some help coming to terms with it….

    In a way, it has helped me to accomplish some of the things I have, OTOH, it’s held me back in other areas……… so in dealing with it, maybe I can find a middle ground.

    It’s not a death sentence, and maybe if some employers would look at the lists of the positive and negative traits or effects, they could work on taking advantage of an employee’s positive AD/HD attributes. Need a leader when things go to pieces? Pick an ADD person. ;-)

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    #97645
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    vikki9
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    I’m new to this site and to ADD – diagnosed last month… and turning 60 next month! Am on medication and life gets better and better every day now.

    Deciding to tell or not didn’t take long. I’ll use the same approach I do about being a breast cancer survivor. When the topic comes up and it seems that it may be information helpful to whom I’m talking with, I’ll tell. ADD is part of who I am, and what a relief to know! If my experience will serve some one in some way, it will be my pleasure to share.

    We’ve nothing to be embarrassed about and might all be quite proud of the accomplishments achieved with this challenging, jumpy, excited, un-focused, hesitating, and creative gift hanging over our beautiful heads. I applaud us!

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    #97646
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    Anonymous
    Post count: 14412

    I agree with vikki9, toofat, cakediva and Bob L. …for one thing trying to hide ADD or ADHD is like trying to hide a full grown elephant under a blade of grass; you just can’t do it. We are what we are; were are who we are; it you meet a person with ADD or ADHD you have met an individual not a text book diagnosis. Unless we advocate for ourselves by being who we are openly and honestly we will continue to fall pray to false stigmas and stereotypes; by allowing ourselves to be “comfortable in our own skins” we give licence to others to do the same while harnessing our true potentials. I have my quarks but I also have my talents I have ADHD, ADHD does not have me; I find that, it is more fun to celebrate life and living than to mourn my short commings; the simple reality is if someone can’t except you for you they probably can’t except themselves either.

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    #97647
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    Anonymous
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    Wow what an array of responses…very cool. Everything across the map.

    I was just thinking as I read the posts above……. it seems interesting to me that folks with brains that function as ours do, are placed in the position where we wonder we need to be explained??? I find that curious??? Really, brain function is the only difference between us and the majority of folks on this spinning globe. Their brain functions in one manner and ours functions in another. They are the majority so we are automatically, the minority anomaly. It seems that with there is an expectation (within the majority) for everybody to function, process and view in the same manner. Weird!! So those of us who don’t follow the path are problematic in some manner??? Anything that does does not follow the mainstream normative route is suspect and requires explanation and catagorizing??? I don’t get it!!! I understand it, but I don’t get it.

    I really have a problem with explaining my differences to other, I find it offensive I guess. That is my issue….I know! I’m not trying to direct any thinking here…. just sharing where I come from. It saddens me slightly that the majority perspective is so narrow that I am required to explain who I am .

    I guess I’m off topic….little boxing day rant maybe??? Hahahahahah…..

    Merry Merry all….

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    #97648
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    agnoscet
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    Post count: 40

    Well, ENTP here… but my boss figured when I pushed him to make me a designer rather than being a manager any longer that I had some issues with his chosen direction for my career. I’m a visionary, not a technician, but if I don’t understand what’s possible, I can’t design. I asked to be a line engineer instead of a supervisor, because I can’t design if I don’t understand the technology, but I don’t want to be a technician. Put me in the trenches, let me learn the new stuff, then put me in a position to create.

    I lucked out. He understood and put the whole transition together. It wouldn’t have happened had I not opened up to him. I didn’t happen to say anything about ADD as such, but just pointed out my track record, my accomplishments, and basically told him what motivates someone like myself.

    Patrick mentioned in the movie that some of us find a wife and boss who has the attitude of our fifth grade teachers. I had plenty of that. My current manager is a gem. He wants people to succeed, and wants to do what will make us all successful. I am very fortunate in this.

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    #97649
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    Anonymous
    Post count: 14412

    Hey all,

    I guess I’ve been really lucky as far as being able to tell my boss knowing that there would be no negative repericussions. However, I do work for a non-profit that provides 24/7 in-home care for adults with developmental disabilities, so just about everyone there is understanding and empathetic.

    When I received my diagnosis I told my boss within the first week. She was great, instead of continuing to ride me about the tasks I hadn’t been getting done regularly; she put together three checklists for me that revolve weekly. Now everything gets done, and I’ve found that I love the mini-reward of being able to initial off each completed task. Having the checklist means the time it takes to do the chores is drastically reduced (I don’t have to decide what gets done today vs. tomorrow) and frees me up to spend more time interacting with our clients and improving their overall care.

    I think letting your boss know is a good idea, if their knowing will enable them to adjust things to benefit all involved.

    Peace

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