With Attention Deficit Disorder, it’s challenging because I am perceiving and processing the world in an entirely different way, which is invisible to others. Because you present as a woman without an obvious disability, people tend to expect certain behaviours from you. So when you’re continuously having interactions where you don’t meet those expectations, it does chip away at your confidence over time.
I used to dread talking to my boss because I would often forget what I was talking about mid-sentence. I have had people tell me I seem disinterested, or that I am a bad listener. So I do often find myself overcompensating in certain situations. I have been guilty of playing into the ‘ditzy’ stereotype. I always have a self-depreciating joke at the ready, to make light of any situation, in an almost apologetic humour. It can be draining. I know I shouldn’t, but it’s natural to care what people think. I think every woman feels immense pressure to conform to societal expectations anyway, and with an invisible disability it’s certainly a considerable challenge to deal with.