Forgive me if this post turns into a rant. I think this is an important concept though, so I’m going to risk it. We have an idea in our culture that there’s some sort of “King’s X” or “Pass” that can be dealt to people if they have a particular problem or situation. I want to dispel this notion right now! People with ADHD, Asperger’s, eating disorders, diabetes, fibromyalgia, etc. still have to live in the world! We all have to find a way to pay our bills, clean our houses, feed ourselves, and do our jobs. It may be harder for someone with ADHD to complete a task, but there are ways of getting it done. It is harder for someone with no sense of direction to get someplace, but there are compensatory measures that can be learned. Otherwise, that person would only leave his/her house if someone else drove! e think if we are sick, someone else will take care of us, clean the house, cook, etc. If we are very lucky, there may be someone who can do this for a time. But even that person is either going to have to get well, or find a way to do the laundry with the illness. It is true that we have to acknowledge our limitations and realities. Someone with fibromyalgia may not be able to clean for 5 hours. Things don’t have to be perfect, but the laundry and dishes still need to be done. Instead of 5 hours in one day, perhaps smaller time periods of 10-15 minutes will get the job done.
If you grew up in an abusive home, you do not get a pass! If you were a sick child, you do not get a pass! If you are not “good with money” you do not get a pass! Life has rules. We don’t get to change them because we feel like it. Actions have consequences, whether or not that is “fair”. Gravity exists. Hot stoves exist. Criminals who don’t care if you are underage exist. If you don’t relate to the concept of “right” and “wrong”, perhaps you can think about “effective” and “disastrous”. There are things we all have to learn how to do and take care of. We don’t have to be good at it. We don’t have to like it. We don’t have to stop having ADHD, or being ill. We just have to figure out how to do what needs to be done. If you don’t pay your bills, there will be consequences, even if the reason you didn’t pay them is because you were helping your mother who got cancer. If you don’t take care of yourself, there will be consequences, even if the reason you stopped eating good food is because you were busy taking your children to all their after-school activities.
Before you despair and become overwhelmed, remember, things don’t have to be perfect. We tend to make things more complicated than they need to be. You can learn to cook, even after you have a stroke and it’s hard to remember everything. You don’t have to learn to make gourmet meals. You can make soup, or a simple salad. You can bake a potato and grill something. You may need to carry a timer around with you to let you know when to take something out of the oven. If you grew up in an abusive home, you are not doomed! You can learn relationship skills, and you can have a good life! Do not give up on yourself, no matter what your personal challenges are. You don’t need a “Pass” – you need an effective way of dealing with life.