TestBash Spring 2023 - ADHD and Me: How Neurodivergence Boosts My Testing - Karen Todd

During TestBash Spring, @karentestsstuff gave a talk on ADHD and Me: How Neurodivergence Boosts My Testing.

We’ll use this Club thread to keep the conversation going, share resources and answer any questions we don’t get to during the live session.

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Questions Answered Live

@jenbauer - How do you “feel out” within a work team (leaders) who can be trusted about our mental challenges? Do you have any helpful topics that you start with?

@fullsnacktester - For any of us watching, who might be able to relate but have no diagnosis, is there a safe way for us to get support?

Questions Not Answered Live

Anonymous - Any good advice how to make the company see that not only tolerance for skin color or gender is tolerance, people with superpowers are actually really valuable?

@guimess - When you are in a depressive sort of mode, what do you find most important to remember? Do you find it generally possible to do so?

Anonymous - How do you deal with to-do lists the times when you don’t find focus?

@megsberry - Could you please recommend resources that helped you grow as a tester and a Neurodiverse person - maybe particular courses or speakers, books, learning paths.

@gemma.hill1987 - First of all you’re great and I love you :purple_heart: Secondly, can you share some tips on getting to know yourself?

Anonymous - I talked to a manager about my similar struggles, and used the info against me. There’s a big stigma. Any advice on balancing need for support and staying safe?

@rumikon - When something is so clear in your head but struggle to clearly express it (bug, comment) verbally/written, how do you get over those hurdles and/or frustration

Anonymous - Have you ended up using some medication for your condition? Because I suffer from the same and have finally been able to start working after 30+ years now

Resources Mentioned

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Hi @karentestsstuff Firstly thank you for an awesome session.
I haven’t bothered to get a diagnosis for my ADHD or my Dyslexia or my Anxiety, I am on SSRI’s for my depression however. Would you recommend that I try and get the others officially diagnosed or is knowing and learning to live with & accept them enough?

Hi friend <3
Just to say it:
I can’t give medical advice in any fashion, but I can tell you my experience.

What I’ve had success with is doing some preliminary research on my own when I discover a habit or behavior that I may be able to put a name to. I then bring this research to my psychiatrist and therapist, and ask them to give me more context. We then are able to draw up experiments to test those ideas and see if they truly apply or not.

I hate to be a tester here to answer your question, but “It depends…” Words hold power to me. Labels help me to understand the world and myself better. This is not the case for all. It’s up to you and your needs. The work I do in advance helps me understand better the directives and language of my medical team so that I can have better success in my goals. I hope that rambling answer might help answer your question, even though it isn’t direct advice.

Thank you so much for being present and participating in this discussion <3

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Just a heads up for those anxiously awaiting answers:

I am going to give myself some space today to rest and process this experience. I promise to spend dedicated time to answering each of your questions in the near future. I got started on the above reply and realized half way through that I just don’t have the “spoons” today to treat all of these questions with the care they require.

Look forward to hearing from me soon, and I appreciate the time and energy of every single one of you beautiful souls <3

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This topic can be super overwhelming so I wanted to drop a couple of resources in here in case it helps. The way that I figured out that I have ADHD was by watching the video “ADD & Loving It?!” (After watching I found a diagnostic questionnaire and brought it to my therapist who referred me to a psychiatrist.) As it turns out, the video is now available for free on YouTube: https://youtu.be/N49trzkqdTo .

As mentioned by Tristan, psychologytoday.com is good for finding therapists. It also contains a wealth of articles with helpful information on all types of mental health issues. I’ve found it helpful and useful.