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mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

I know two young people who were both struggling with school, always branded as "smart but lazy" by teachers and in one case by their own parents. One graduated with good grades, the other left school without graduating.

Yesterday I learned that both of them have been diagnosed with depression and one of them has severe ADHD.

Both obviously masked and compensated the hell out of it.

Laziness does not exist.

mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@draco I wasn’t diagnosed with autism until I was about out of high school. Every day was absolutely exhausting, and I had less than no support from the school or from my family. Exact same labels were applied to me (smart but lazy) and that made things so much harder. I wonder where I would be if some people had some faith in me. I really hope that more people realize what you did. There is no such thing as laziness.

mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@draco This was very much me, and in my 40s I still struggle with the self-loathing it taught me.

re: mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@trixter @draco Same here. I'm lucky that my ADHD is mild enough that I was able to use my intelligence to mask it well enough to power through college, but my wife frequently has to remind me that no-one is capable of being at their absolute best/most productive all the time, and that includes me.

I got my diagnosis in my 40s, and that, combined with a growing suspicion that I might be also be autistic, has just been an incredible paradigm shift for my self-perception.

re: mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@draco laziness does exist, technically; even in a person with adhd.

For example I've adhd but I kinda have sometimes developed a mindset of lifestyle that made my lethargy much much worse

I guess adhd in a sense makes you much much more likely to become lazy or act lazy.

ofc though as you say the reductionist mindset of 'this person is lazy' is wrong

mental health, not mine, "laziness", reply 

@draco pretty much agree.
but let's not forget folk who are fine with marking ADHD folk as lazy.
As in, some might just be... racist? ableist? (forgot the word) towards mentally special.

mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@draco I’ve had some really good teachers (and some bad) but in my 30s, I’ve realized they caused real damage by calling me “lazy”, which is something I had internalized and now need to unlearn. I hope today’s generation of teachers is better about that.

mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@chucker unfortunately not really... I mean, maybe they don't call people that to their faces.

I was one of the "smart but lazy/undisciplined" ones. I was "highly gifted"... and graduated with so-so grades. Unlearning the "you're just undisciplined, pull yourself together and *work*" internal talk is now my life's work.

mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@draco yes. They put me on a pedestal that I could never actually reach, this inadvertently setting me up for failure. “You’re so smart yet lazy; why don’t you use your potential.”

Maybe because brains are a lot more complicated than “smart” and “not smart”? Just spitballing.

mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@draco the other problem with “gifted” branding is it isolates you. You become the outsider your entire school career, and now even *teachers* treat you differently.

giftedness/ "twice exceptional" 

@chucker mine wasn't the pedestal... no one understood how learning faster than others in a bunch of areas and thriving on complexity made it so I failed time and again because I was too bored to pay attention.

Newsflash: Gifted people need at least the same support, not less. But there's this zero-sum thinking that supporting gifted students takes support away from those who are struggling.

And then, of course, I had undiagnosed ADHD.

mental health, mine, "laziness" 

@chucker to be clear, the really damaging stuff came from my mom and my grandma.

"Highly gifted and ADHD" is its very own special combination.

mental health, not mine, "laziness" 

@draco I think I might have nearly gotten an adhd diagnosis in primary school. (A teacher sent my parents a letter that caused them to send me to therapy or something like that and that letter sounds a lot like describing adhd)

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