One reason its so difficult for adults to be correctly assessed for ADHD or Autism Spectrum challenges, is because the diagnostic criteria where designed for assessing kids who haven’t spent their lives learning how to mask yet.
Clinicians need to receive A LOT of instruction about those of us who fell through the cracks and went about devising strategies to manage life. Not all of those strategies are healthy mind you.
They may include denial, projection, blame, self-medication or distraction for example.
On the positive side there’s reminders, mentors, organizers, lists and more.
What I really wish is that the professional world in general would STOP treating these conditions like behavior problems.
It would be like calling grief a crying problem. As long as the crying has stopped so has the problem. Yeah! It doesn’t work that way.
Suppressing a behavior may be no more a solution than clamping a lid on a pressure cooker down a little tighter.
Living with these conditions can cause a cascade of affects in the way you feel about yourself, others and the world around you. Behavior alone doesn’t give you insight into all of this.
You can’t resolve it with a few executive function skills. But this is exactly what many behavior focused professionals try to do.
They work to consequence someone into normalcy instead of teaching them how to effectively communicate their needs AND the way they need them met.
These approaches are biased toward the needs of everyone else.
No wonder so few with these challenges reach their potential.
I’ve found the right relationship dynamic between parent and child or teacher and child can calm everyone down and establish the trust needed for each person to grow.