Many of you reading this probably know someone with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. You may even have it yourself. Over the years, it’s become common to caricature those with ADHD as disruptive schoolchildren causing havoc in the classroom. While this is certainly the case with some children with ADHD, most of the children I work with have the opposite problem. Their mind isn’t actually in the classroom at all, but a million miles away…
As someone who grew up with ADHD, I know what it’s like spending day after day in the classroom with your head in the clouds. I was fortunate (some might say unfortunate) to have parents who were overly laissez-faire with my education. Although had they been pushy parents, I assure you it wouldn’t have made the slightest difference. At school, there was this inner feeling of ‘I can’t be bothered’, which prevailed whenever I tried to concentrate. My mind would wander adrift. I’d feel a sense of shame for not having the same attention span as my peers. The exception to this was during geography, when I could hold my attention for over an hour at a time.
Otherwise, my time at school was pretty uneventful. Each disappointing grade I received would further reinforce the belief that I wasn’t good enough. Despite scraping through my GCSEs and A-levels, my inner critic kept convincing me that my brain was too slow to compete with the world. Belonging to a family of high achievers didn’t make things any easier.
To read my full JUNO Magazine column (£), order your copy of the Spring 2022 issue here