A DHDers have the wrong expectations of non-ADHDers. We think they are like us. Foolishly we reveal something of our inner lives — show our vulnerability — and we assume that as a gesture of good faith they will do the same. So we peel back our skin, exposing muscles, organs and nerves. See, this is what I’m made of. Now show me yours. Too many times, after we’ve exposed our vital organs and tissue, someone picks up a stick and starts jabbing. The pain shoots through our very core. We close up the skin. It’s too late. The damage has been done. It is a painful lesson learned thousands of times through a lifetime of jabs. We swear that we will never peel back the skin again, never allow ourselves to be vulnerable again. So we protect ourselves, withdrawing from the world and into ourselves. [note 1]
It has taken me fifty years to overcome the pain, to be willing to pull back the skin and not feel vulnerable. It has been an extraordinarily liberating experience. The more I say This is me the freer I feel. You see the evidence of this throughout this blog from my very first post written in June 2007 — almost five years ago!! — to this very post to my Day’s Rant to my Writer’s Mind. Being much older I care less and less about what other people think. The inner me is bursting at the seams with so much to say and so much to do. Get out of my way is my daily mantra. Move over! Big changes are here and more to come! Of course I must still be cautious. There are still those who will pick up a stick and start jabbing, and even if I can withstand the pain, I still feel it. But in my head I know what to say. You gotta a problem with me, buddy? Well, fuck you! Go live your miserable dessicated life in that hole in the ground you crawled out of.
I have to say I’ve been lucky. I do have some real friends. I’ve peeled back the skin and, sure enough, we’re still friends. Better friends, perhaps, for my having done that because it made it okay for them to do it too, even if they don’t have “the curse.” I’ll be seeing some of those friends later today at high noon. It’s our monthly lunch group meeting. We’ve been meeting for almost ten years. I’ll let you guess who runs the group.
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- Isn’t this the very problem faced by the LGBT community? They cannot be who they are and when they reveal it, they are extraordinarily vulnerable and the world teaches them to keep to themselves, to ‘stay in the closet.’↩