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When Someone Tells Me to 'Stop Faking' My ADD

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“You don’t actually have ADD. You are just using it for the accommodations,” is, sadly, something that’s been said more than once to me.

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I am a sophomore in high school, and my school has special learning accommodations for those who need them. I get extra time on tests and sometimes even a different room to take them in. It helps immensely, but some others just see them as something I’m using to get good grades. What they don’t see is the extra hours spent studying so that I can get those good grades.

I don’t like to mention my ADD to many people. My friends and my teachers are pretty much all who know about it. Sometimes, though, someone will overhear a conversation with a teacher or will ask me why I go into another room to take a test. I just tell them the truth. They don’t believe me, since in their mind, I am labeled as one of those “smart kids,” and to them, having ADD would change that. You can be smart and have ADD; you just have to work harder to do some things. People who don’t have ADD can’t understand.

I like to think of my ADD as a secret superpower. I can’t multitask or focus on more than one thing for a long time, and my thoughts constantly jump around, but my ADD makes me special.

To those people who tell me I am faking my ADD, “go fly a kite!” I wish more people would understand there are different experiences of ADD, and there is medication that can help it. That means, a person who seems “normal” and focused could have ADD, but they could also be on good medication to help them manage it.

I am not “faking” my ADD, and I am not using my accommodations to help me get better grades. Those who can’t understand don’t deserve my time trying to explain to them. If someone tells you to stop faking your ADD, just let it be and try to focus on more important things.

Thinkstock image by LuckyBusiness

Originally published: October 4, 2017
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