As the summer ends many of us are returning back to school and work. I am an adult with ADHD and I am not. I have been unemployed for many years. My long-term unemployment stint started in 2009 when I lost my job due to outsourcing. I would love nothing more than to return to the routine of having a steady job.
Obtaining interviews, getting through the interviews and actually getting jobs are such a struggle for me as an adult with ADHD. The transition from being laid off in 2009 to trying to get another job has been the toughest transition in my life. I have been unemployed the entire duration of President Obama’s 8-year term.
I’m already confident and talented in my field, but I worry constantly and overthink the following:
Did I make eye contact long enough? Did I shake the interviewer’s hand with the correct amount of firmness? Are my clothes too tight or too loose? Am I walking too slow or too fast into the room? Am I walking funny? Am I smiling enough? Are my hands shaking? Am I doing enough to not let other noises distract me while the interviewer is talking? If someone is heating food and it stinks will I be able to hide the fact that I feel like I’m going to throw up (because everyone seems like they have to eat smelly food between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. in enclosed buildings)?
The few part-time jobs I was able to get didn’t last more than a few months. I feel like I’m socially blind making transitions of most kinds very difficult, except the transition I made when I took the volunteer position to become the editor at ADDA. That transition was seamless. Some things are just meant to work out because I just fit in here. I hope to have this luck in the working world. We all need this luck with transitions in life. At least we have ADDA in the meantime.