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Adult Diagnosed ADHD, What’s The Difference

I'm Sorry
Well, I’m not …

Is there a difference between adult diagnosed ADHD and pediatric diagnosed ADHD?

Not in the mechanics there isn’t.

But in life, we have long discussed the differences between nature and nurture, and this gives rise to something worth pondering.

While we are now convinced that nature is the origin of ADHD, that nurture does not cause this disorder, not knowing of our disability until later most definitely has a negative effect on our lives.

Just in …

A recent comment on one of my posts from three years ago described to me a family situation where the commentor was telling me that their children with ADHD “understand, accept, cope, deal, have their bad days but thrive” having been diagnosed at a young age.

The commentor, however, was saying in their comment that they were in agreement with the post they were commenting on, one that was a diatribe or tirade of apologies for all the symptoms that negatively affect the lives of those of us who live with ADHD.

And this comment pointed out …

The commentor’s thoughts pointed out to me that the comparison of nurture with diagnosis and nurture (if it can be called that) without diagnosis, reveals a vast divergence.

We have struggled with not being accepted and yet without knowing any reason for it. We do not see ourselves as abnormal simply because we are the only example of humanity that we can use as a reference.

Everyone else is abnormal, we are us, I am me, this is what life is.


I have no doubt that the children referenced in the comment are aware of their own differences, that they do indeed have their bad days, and that those days highlight the differences between them and the neuro-typical population.

And I would not belittle their situation for any reason. And so I won’t.

But I would give anything to have spent a greater percentage of my life knowing what was up, what was the reason for my not being accepted as normal.

But then again

I can no more help when I was born and where I lived than I can cure ADHD.

This is what I had to work with, born in the last year of the 1950’s, raised in a rural community with near primitive education facilities, caring relatives and teachers who had no labels for me at that time but were willing to help, peers who sometimes were accepting enough that I managed to have a peer group, enough random small successes that I figured out a crooked yet forward moving path, partners along the way that created a synergy in my relationships that made positive use of my abilities and gave me some self respect and appreciation, progress.

In closing I will quote myself from that post that instilled the comment that inspired this quote, I hope that isn’t too meta for anyone reading this:

I’m sorry I have ADHD … and am having too damned much fun at it to care.



Adult Diagnosed ADHD, What’s The Difference

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. (2020). Adult Diagnosed ADHD, What’s The Difference. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 23, 2020, from


Last updated: 24 Jun 2020
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