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“11 Things I’d Tell My Younger Self”

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When I was diagnosed with ADHD in my 40s, I looked back at my life with a new set of eyes. My heart broke for the child I was.

Messiness, time blindness, compulsive hyperfocus, emotional dysregulation, and rejection sensitivity were all things I’d internalized as my personal failings and default personality traits rather than what they really were: ADHD symptoms.For most of my life, I did not have the knowledge I needed to understand myself and counterbalance pervasive negative messaging that made me feel inherently defective and ashamed.

Post-diagnosis, it still takes a lot of effort to notice and rectify harmful, anti-neurodivergent messaging from those close to me and from wider society.I’ve been on a journey to drain my seemingly bottomless pool of shame, and it’s not a linear process.

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