The Neurodivergence of society.
A blog about the new "trend" of discovery. An ADHD world emerges from ignorance.

The Neurodivergence of society.

I see so much about Autism and ADHD on my social media feeds these days, it’s gotten to a saturation point where they are practically the only posts I get to see. Familiar faces show up daily on TikTok or Reels are now celebrities in the ADHD community. They post videos and spread awareness using new terminology. Most have no qualifications beyond personal experience.

Videos with titles like; “Things I wish I knew” or “I thought it was just me” are among the topics. Masking and various sensitivities to injustice, or light or taste are newly being discovered as common, not unique. A new video every few minutes appears on my feed describing the same things from each individual perspective. I see couples with neurodivergent and neurotypical partners coping and selling books and others making exciting new careers out of their newfound fame and popularity. People are giving TED Talks and dedicating whole channels to this popular brain configuration.

This is probably good, but they are not as representative of me as I initially believed. I don’t see any of the ADHD community members who stay at home in their basement pretending to be normal and convincing people they’re fine. People like me.

This resurgence of discovery is having both positive and negative effects on many people. I don’t feel I can, or want to unmask and reveal the true me. I don’t like that version of me. I’m not sure who I am without the pretence. I like acting normal. I enjoy being liked, and after 15 minutes I can sneak away and return to my bed in the basement. That’s how it’s always been.

If I wanted to be more authentic to myself now, I’m not sure people would believe it. I mask well in short bursts. How could I expect anyone to believe I stare at the ceiling in depression 14 hours a day when they only know me as fun-Jeff. I don’t even know what an unmasked version of me would be like.

One issue with these videos is the way they are presented to the nerotypical world. In many cases, they’re not. I see them in my feed because I indicated I like them, but the general public isn’t being educated because the algorithm shows them other videos.

We may be raising awareness but they’re still not changing the minds of people who have an existing view. Claiming you have a different brain has been met with resistance. It’s hard to change core beliefs quickly.

Try convincing people you suddenly discovered you’ve had a different brain type all along, and now its considered a disability that stops you from being able to do the tasks and chores you need to do. People are finding that is a very hard sell to anyone who manages to finish tasks they may not enjoy. If you unmask and show your struggle, you may be accused of jumping on the ADHD bandwagon to avoid hard work.

Even I have to admit to being a little skeptical that it’s not all an elaborate whine invented by a generation of whiners. It makes sense to me the way my brain craves dopamine to stay on task and fails without it, but I’m not sure if its the same for the buck-it-up sugar cup generation. Nobody wanted to walk 10 miles to school uphill, but before we got a diagnosis with an akronymn, people did it.

I am ashamed to unmask and claim special privileges especially now that so many people are publicizing it. I feel like a con artist wearing a fake cast to get a better parking space. A better analogy might be the guy with an actual broken leg in a cast. He’s allowed the better parking space, but everyone will judge him if he doesn’t limp out of the car.

Gee, thanks. A new reason to stare at the ceiling and mope. I don’t have answers. Like anything new, there are stages of awareness and acceptance. Many people still believe long outdated ideas about race or sex. Those fights continue and they’re claiming equality. Many feel the nero-divergent might be claiming superiority.

It is an interesting time to be sure. I no longer sit and stare at the ceiling. Now I stare at my phone and discover all my quirks are not me at all. They’re just another symptom of a different brain. Time to retreat to my basement again, only now instead of staring at the ceiling, I scroll through more videos.

0 Comments

Care to comment?

Subscribe

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.