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I concur with the positive remarks below and your description of your experience of belated ADHD diagnosis chimes with mine.

In your process of self-discovery you’ll likely find that you and your ADHD are inseparable. However, as you become more self-aware, you’ll get practised in suppressing or rising above its self-harmful traits and take with good humor the more benign ones.

Med’s have also helped me greatly (it’s more neurochemical than a ‘wiring’ issue.) And as you say, offer a glimpse into a realm of conscious experience that’s freer of cognitive impediments — perhaps how ‘normal people’ experience the world.

At first I was elated about diagnosis and med’s — life seemed to get easier and in turn, less stressful and more hopeful. But this positivity gave way to a deep sense of loss. Decades wasted, struggling with cycles of failure> self-loathing> optimism> then right back to the same failings again (all the while, receiving earnest advice to conscientiously write lists!) The philosopher Shelly Kagen, gave a name to such retrospective loss - ‘schmoss!’

Once I recovered from depression brought on by the schmoss, I realised just how those who live life effortlessly take this for granted and just how unjustly judgemental they can be about others’ failure to breeze through life as frictionlessly as they do. Note the percentages of those incarcerated in our jails estimated to have ADHD. (FYI, my moral beliefs are well articulated by Galen Strawson’s and his ‘basic argument’ — helpfully guilt ridding and persuasive — I think!)

We read the life-stories of ‘successful people’ and their dizzying trajectories. Where’s the heroism of breezing along in life with the wind at their backs? Were it chronicled, your life so-far may read as a chaotic whirl-wind and you might live with 1000 regrets from your past, but your future successes will be all the more impressive and heroic for this.

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