December 3rd (yesterday) was the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities. The day is meant to promote awareness, understanding, and support of people with all kinds of disabilities.
Someone suggested that it might make a good topic for this site, but I wasn’t entirely sure of that because I don’t identify myself as being disabled.
Here are a couple of the answers I received when I asked “If you have ADHD, do you identify as disabled?”.
Not since I met you.
ADHD is a disability in a culture that would rather have drones that sit down and shut up
Ummm, only when it gets me a $2000 student grant that this single mom isn’t going to leave on the table :-/
In the United States Attention Deficit Disorder with or without hyperactivity is considered a disability under Federal Law. This allows us certain accommodations that help level the playing field at school and at work. (Note: accommodations are typically determined by a mental health professional. You are generally not allowed to decide which accommodations you want.)
It’s been my experience that students are more likely to ask for accommodations than adults at work. A big reason for this is the stigma thats attached to having ADHD. People look at you as a lesser person – less intelligent, less able. Not true, of course, but still.
Students often get accommodations because their parents have intervened on their behalf. Schools are also more accustomed to providing them for those who qualify.
There are still people out there, though, who see accommodations as cheating or getting an unfair advantage. Of course that is completely untrue, and in the United States we have Federal law to back us up.
So what do you think?
Do you feel disabled because you have ADHD? Leave a comment and let me know.