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  • Writer's pictureallison zinnick

ADHD is NOT a Freaking Superpower


Allison Zinnick

6 minutes

ADHD is not cute. ADHD is not fun. ADHD…sucks.

We’re used to seeing motivational posts that say “ADHD is my superpower”. Even my mug that says “neuro-delicious” implies that having a mental disorder is fun and sparkly. When I posted to my Facebook about that mug, my friend said

“I wish my neurodivergence was fun like this mug.” – my smart friend

You know what? She’s totally right. It’s important to be positive, but it’s also important to be real. So here’s the reality: ADHD makes me struggle with..almost everything.

Self Care

I struggle with the basics of self care. Brushing my teeth? Boring. Shaving my legs? Boring. Hair washing is a good example of how basic tasks add up to more tasks for the ADHD brain. To a “normal” person, hair washing is just that. When I think of washing my hair, the entirety of the process is overwhelming. It’s not just getting undressed and getting in the shower. It’s the task of washing my hair, then drying it, then styling it. The amount of steps is so daunting, that I often just..don’t.

Rejection Sensitivity

Alright, let’s dive into the saga of rejection sensitivity – the thing that makes me feel like a mind reader, but not in a cool superhero way. Nope, it’s more like a constant worry-fest about what everyone thinks of me.

most of my day is spent doing a mental ping-pong about whether people like me or not. It’s like a never-ending game where the scoreboard is just a mix of thumbs up or thumbs down emojis. And let me tell you, it’s freakin’ exhausting.

Take this blog, for example. I can’t help but wonder if anyone out there is even reading it. Are my words just floating in the vast internet abyss, or is someone actually nodding along?

Then there’s the mom guilt at the pickup line. Why? Because some days, I just can’t summon the energy to strut to the school; I’m parked right here, thank you very much. But in my head, I’m convinced the other moms are thinking, “Look at her, too lazy to take a stroll.”

And don’t even get me started on text messages. If my husband shoots me an “Ok.” instead of a “Sounds good!”, my brain goes into overdrive. Is he secretly mad? Did I do something wrong?

Living with rejection sensitivity is like having a personal drama channel in your head that never switches off. But here’s the kicker – most of the time, the scenarios we cook up in our minds are way worse than reality. So, note to self (and anyone else riding this rollercoaster): take a breath, cut yourself some slack, and maybe, just maybe, people aren’t dissecting your every move as much as you think.

Impulse Control

I struggle so much with my impulse control, specifically with my shopping. I am so eager to fix the problem right that second that I order something on amazon that I THINK will fix it.

So, there I am, facing a problem. Instead of taking a moment to think it through, I’m hitting that order button faster than you can say “overnight delivery.” And guess what? Most of the time, that shiny package doesn’t fix a thing. Cue the regret and the sound of my hard-earned cash flushing down the drain.

It’s also why I’ve struggled with a gambling addiction. We can talk another time about that, but ADHD and the increasingly addictive tactics of online gambling, almost destroyed my life. From ADDitude Magazine: “Initially, addictive behaviors provide a jolt of dopamine that is very satisfying for the brain’s reward circuitry. Over time, the “thrill” wears off, but the addictive behavior continues due to physical or emotional cravings.” I’ve also been working for the past 3 years to reduce my alcohol intake. Impulse control is a huge part of this, for me. It’s not that I need it per say, but I find if the thought pops in my brain to grab a beer or a glass of wine, it’s hard to shake that thought. I’m also realizing that alcohol might be behind my surges in anxiety, so I’m trying out 30 days sober. I’ll let you know how that goes.

Emotional Regulation

Okay, let’s talk about a biggie – emotions. Emotional regulation is like trying to ride a rollercoaster blindfolded. I think it’s one reason I got the boot from my job. It’s not that I didn’t care or wasn’t good at my job, it was just my ‘attitude,’.

Picture this: Corporate Barbie is talking, and I can’t quite master the ‘neutral face.’ I mean, seriously, who can stay poker-faced when the higher-ups are spewing corporate jargon? So yeah, my face might’ve spilled the beans on what I was really thinking.

And at home, it’s not any easier. Sometimes I need a timeout before I respond to my kids or my husband.

But it’s not just about us. It’s about how the world sees us and how we navigate it. The workplace, with all its rules and norms, can feel like a tightrope walk. You gotta act cool even when you’re not feeling it.

So, what’s the solution? Well, first off, we gotta acknowledge the struggle. Pretending everything’s fine just doesn’t cut it. Then, we can start finding tricks that work – maybe it’s taking a deep breath before going into a meeting or having a code word with your family that signals you need a moment.


ADHD is like a game of hide-and-seek with your own memory. Keys, wallets, important papers – these normal things turn into mysteries. Constantly retracing your steps is exhausting.

Losing things isn’t just about misplacing stuff. It’s missed appointments, forgotten deadlines, and responsibilities *poof* gone. I have no solution to this other than creating spaces that work for you. Set up reminders, get some organizational tools, and slowly you can shape a world that makes sense for your brain.

To Sum it Up

Living with ADHD can be overwhelming, from the constant struggle to maintain focus to the frustration of being misunderstood. The daily battles with procrastination, forgetfulness, and impulsivity can take a toll. Of course it’s not all bad – we have some great qualities too. We’re funny. We’re spontaneous. We’re creative. But, sharing the positives AND the negatives is important, maybe then they’ll stop calling ADHD a ‘trend’. 🙂


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