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You Want To Call Me Names?

The best label for me ...
The best label for me …

I’m not ADHD. And ADHD isn’t me.

I have ADHD, but that’s not who I am. You can get to know me and never suspect that I have ADHD. Because again, that’s really not who I am.

I can take a course in just about anything. I may do well, or I may struggle. Either way, it may be because of my ADHD, but you will never know that, because I’m a person. I’m not ADHD.

What’s the truth?

The truth is that I crave knowledge, a very human thing to do. Whether I struggle to acquire it, or hyper-focus and immerse myself in it because of my ADHD, is not who I am. That’s not what I am made of. It’s only a bit of the icing.

I can start a book and read it from cover to cover in a day or two, maybe three if it’s longer. Or I can start five or six books over the course of a couple of weeks and have them lying around in various places with bookmarks buried at various depths. They might lie around for months. Both these behaviors may have there root in my ADHD, but I am not ADHD.

And what of it?

You see, I like to read because I’m a human. Other than language, and it’s various means of exchange, no other creation of human kind has ever come so close to allowing us to read each others minds. And we are social beings, knowing each others minds, desires, wishes, fears and dreams is what we crave. But that is being human. That is not being ADHD.

I could easily decide, on a whim, to rearrange my entire house. I might make a bedroom an office, swap the dining room for the living room, put a desk in the hallway. I might decide to move the TV to the basement even though it’s unfinished, and call it the giant rec room. I might move everything in my garden shed to that unfinished basement and turn that garden shed into a gazebo.

And you might call me …

You could call me quirky, and I’d agree. You could call me ingenious and I’d say “Thank you.” You could call me mad and I’d laugh … probably with an evil edge to it just to make you laugh along. But don’t call me ADHD.

You can call me a friend. You can call me a confidant. You can call me your competition or your nemesis or your hero or your villain or you can call me a stranger, odd, wild, fun, or funny. But don’t call me ADHD.

If I call myself an ADHDer, that’s okay. And if you also have ADHD and we talk about it with full disclosure than the odds are that we will call each other ADHDers eventually and probably laugh because it will happen when we are discussing the uniquenesses of living an ADHD life.

But don’t label me as a judgment of my ways or my life. Don’t call me something you wouldn’t want to be called.

And if you feel like that’s something you might do, let me just forewarn you, we have names for people like that.

You Want To Call Me Names?

Kelly Babcock

I was born in the city of Toronto in 1959, but moved when I was in my fourth year of life. I was raised and educated in a rural setting, growing up in a manner I like to refer to as free range. I live in an area where my family history stretches back 6 or more generations. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 50 and have been both struggling with the new reality and using my discoveries to make my life better. I write two blogs here at Psych Central, one about having ADHD and one that is a daily positive affirmation that acts as an example of finding the good in as much of my life as I possibly can.

Find out more about me on my website: writeofway.

email me at ADHD Man

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APA Reference
Babcock, K. (2015). You Want To Call Me Names?. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 25, 2020, from


Last updated: 23 Jul 2015
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