Wednesday, July 28, 2010

As if "Deficit" isn't enough...

...they tack "Disorder" on too.

I think we need to drop the "Disorder". It's redundant and it flies in the face of honoring neurodiversity. This isn't about being PC, it's about not beating dead horses. I KNOW I have a deficit, duh, that's why I went to a mental health center and said "hey y'all, I think I have ADHD".

It's just that I'm already living with a lack of something. I'm already behind some kind of neurobiological 8-ball. I'm already running to catch up with whatever the heck it was that y'all were just talking about while I was tinkering with my plan to dominate the world by picking blueberries for an hour in the middle of the work day. All of this would be sufficient to alert me to my dopamine deficiency without reminding me that I have a DISORDER.


A deficiency is, in itself, by definition, something to be addressed. ADHD may not be a gift, but I'll be damned if I'm going to run around spitting in the face of everything I've done in life, by repeating "DISORDER-DISORDER-DISORDER" to myself. It's pointless self-abuse.

I have an attention deficit. And if you really read "the literature" you realize that even that part of the label really is fucked anyway. ADHD is NOT an issue of not being able to pay attention, it's an issue of not being able to regulate attention. Which often looks like overfocusing, actually...if you want to get technical.

So THERE, the whole label is screwed.

Attention Regulation Disorder would be more accurate even if it does use the D-word.

And I can own that...I DO have difficulty regulating my attentiveness. But does it mean that I'm disordered, or simply eccentric from the norm. I own my difference, and I own that it presents challenges. But there are some really boring damn people out there with "normal" brains and personally, I think that's a way bigger problem.

I'm going to start referring to those people as "Humor Perception Disordered".

Oh-oh...sorry...I mean "Humor Perception Deficient".


  1. I agree, K. Totally stupid. Even inane.

    Didn't those science-nerds think to call in a marketing person?

    Unfortunately, word is that it's not likely to change. ADD is too entrenched in public policy (insurance, schools, etc.).

  2. Oh, and K? There are some boring people with ADHD, too. Just sayin'.... ;-)

  3. HAHA...oh dang, you're right...there I go, touting the importance of honoring neurodiversity, and I forgot to balance the scales of boring. It's true, I'm sure there are boring people out there with ADHD. I just don't spend a lot of time with them because I'm hyperactive so I seek out excitement :P

    My therapist actually said to me once "you know, not everyone with ADHD is like you". I didn't know what she was getting at (who me, moving too fast to notice...?). She clarified "some are very inattentive and quiet". This blew my mind. You mean everyone's not responsive to every stimulus in their environment all at once and talking about it ALL the time and blogging about it three times a day? Sheesh. Where have I been? Clearly not listening very closely to the details in the woodwork...

  4. Mrs. Rollins, therein lies the danger...extrapolating and generalizing based on a case of one. That's why we can't say that ADHD is the source of our talents. However, it's definitely a source of our difference and I've intentionally used "the gift" of hyperspeed (as you note in your other post) to my advantage.

  5. I don't get what you're saying...sorry, I'm moving too fast...