Hello, my name is Michelle and I have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Diagnosed, labelled, and forever branded. In 1978, in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, the psychiatrists and doctors pronounced that I had attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. That was long before ADHD/ADD was fashionable even in North America. My diagnosis involved my being hospitalized for several months in the childrens’ ward of the University of Alberta hospital while doctors, psychologists, and psychiatrists tried to figure out what was “wrong” with me. They arrived at a diagnosis of ADHD only after eliminating everything else they could think of, including schizophrenia. At the time, ADHD, while known in Canada, was not often diagnosed, and it was very uncommon for it to be diagnosed in females.
What was I like before being diagnosed? Let me take you on a flashback vignette tour.