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You Can’t Imagine ADHD

I can't imagine life without ADHD
But you can’t imagine life with it!

You know, the worst thing I was ever told regarding my ADHD was that I was probably imagining it.

I’m not going to tell you who told me that, I’ll tell you it was someone close to me.

I’m also not going to criticize them for it, they meant well.

How could they have meant well?

They had deduced that I was stressed by this new development in my awareness of myself, and they were thinking that they were giving me hope.

They assumed I was hoping it wasn’t true.

Wasn’t I?

No, I knew it was true. I was hoping that the things I didn’t yet know about ADHD might bring some relief, or at least some help.

So they were basically trying to tell me not to leap to conclusions, not to go off half cocked with a google diagnosis.

But I didn’t do that …

In truth, I was still collecting and collating proof. Every new symptom I discovered I had was being added to a list. (Even the fact that I was making a list of symptoms was on my list of symptoms.)

My anxiety and my excitement were both stemming from the fact that the ADHD case against me was being built solidly and steadily.

Solid facts

And these weren’t just things that seemed to fit with my life right now, as soon as I realize that a symptom applied, my mind would reel back in time and hold up examples from my past that had gone unexplained before.

And then my mind would recall things that had happened that I’d thought I had explained. And then I’d find that the new explanation, ADHD, was a much more accurate fit.

Imagine that!!!

And the thing that cannot be discounted is the fact that, although my mind does not function the way other minds do, and although there is clear evidence that my brain did not develop the way others have, it is functional, and it is private.

So, while others can imagine what it is like to be inside my head, I’m the only one who knows what it truly is like.

And the truth is …

So it is true that you can’t imagine what ADHD is like … if you do not have ADHD.

And if you do have ADHD, you don’t need to imagine what it is like.

But thanks to our clever minds, you can imagine that there are other reasons for your ADHD symptoms.

Imagine that, eh?

You Can’t Imagine ADHD

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 on the traditional lands of the Chippewas of Nawash in an area where my family history stretches back 6 or 7 generations and my First Nations friend's families go back hundreds of 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 am a freelance writer and I write two blogs here at Psych Central, one about living with 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. (2017). You Can’t Imagine ADHD. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 14, 2020, from


Last updated: 18 Aug 2017
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