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Welcome to the Neurodivergent Mental Health Center, we’re so glad you’re here! Take a look around, there’s lots of fun and interesting content to see!
Neurodivergent Mental Health Articles From the Blog
Keep up with ALL of our latest Neurodivergent Mental Health blog articles here!
Neurodivergence and Trauma
Sadly, Neurodivergence and trauma go hand in hand. C-PTSD is very common in our community because of both traumatic life events in early childhood (ACEs) and consistent invalidation from the world at large. As the saying goes: “Society produces no untraumatized Neurodivergents.”
Neurodivergent trauma takes so much of your life, with many of us just struggling to survive as adults.
At MSB, we think you deserve to more than just survive. We think you deserve to thrive.
So how do we thrive?
- We learn about trauma processes (check out the posts below)
- We get support and effective advice from affirming communities like the Neurodivergent Learning and Lifeskills Group and the Neurodivergent Trauma Support Group
- We get access to therapy and resources that are effective and safe for Neurodivergent Mental Health
Together, we can do this.
ND Resources From Around the Web
- Cleaning is Hard Accountability Group on Facebook and the Neurodivergent Cleaning Crew
- Neurodivergent Magic Course by Neurodivergent Magic-helping you get sh*t done!
- Neurodiversity Network – resource site connecting Neurodivergents to affirming workplace connections and other life resources
- MSB’s Self Care Center – a great place to get self care with a neurodivergent perspective
- The Neurodivergent Learning and Lifeskills Group – come connect, ask questions and vent in a safe, private group for Neurodivergents only
- Neurodivergent Artists group on FB- an awesome place to share your art and creative pursuits with other NDs
Learning Disability Resources
Learning disabilities are a Neurodivergence within a Neurodivergence (meaning they can be considered Neurodivergencies on their own but most often co-occur with other processing differences).
These Learning Disabilities include
- Auditory Processing Disorder
- Left – Right Confusion
- Apraxia and Dyspraxia (motor and speech disabilities)
- Dysgraphia (difficulty writing)
And many more. But why are we talking about them on a mental health page? Well because of our old friends: SHAME and ABLEISM.
Internalized ableism tells us that we’re somehow inferior for having Learning Disabilities, especially as adults. Because for some reason, people think LDs only happen to children. All that can lead to depression, anxiety, and Neurodivergent Burnout for many ND adults.
But guess what:
It’s a-okay to have a Learning Disability as an adult.
It’s also okay to:
1. Take some extra time to process and act
2. Ask for directions to be more clear, written down or repeated
3. Ask for accommodations
4. Need to meltdown when you’re overwhelmed
Let me get real here – At age 35 I struggle with my right and lefts. It’s also nearly impossible for me to follow spoken directions.
Because of all that- I still get SO anxious anytime a boss or coworker starts explaining something. I don’t want them to think I’m incapable.
But the truth is, I’m not incapable and neither are you. We just process things differently.
And there’s no age limit on that. Neurodivergent kids grow into Neurodivergent adults after all. It makes sense that we’d struggle with the same issues as when we were younger.
There’s no shame in the game for processing things differently.
And if anyone tells you otherwise, they’re coming from an uniformed place. You do you and they can kick rocks.
You deserve to thrive as a Neurodivergent. Understanding your brain processes and letting go of ableist expectations on your abilities will help you get there. Speaking of which – here’s a bunch of resources on this topic that might help!
1. Do you get your right and left directions confused? It could be “Left Right Confusion” an experience that often co-occurs with Dyslexia (more about that here-https://www.everydayhealth.com/dyslexia/types/)
2. Have a hard time with spoken directions? That’s pretty normal for us NDs. A number of brain differences might be at play including Auditory Processing Disorder (https://www.additudemag.com/auditory-processing-disorder…/) Here’s some ND lived experiences on the subject as well. https://www.additudemag.com/problems-following…/ and https://www.reddit.com/…/do_you_have_difficulty…/
3. And last but not least, find out more about motor disabilities here: Dyspraxia and Apraxia https://www.understood.org/articles/en/whats-the-difference-between-dyspraxia-and-apraxia and Dysgraphia: https://www.additudemag.com/what-is-dysgraphia-understanding-common-symptoms/
What is Neurodiversity and Who is Neurodivergent?
Contrary to common belief, Autistics aren’t the only neurodivergent people out there.
They’re just one of the many “neurotypes” that exist in the world (peep the graphic below).
Neurodiversity is anyone with brain differences diverging from what’s considered neurologically “normal”. To that end, everyone is actually neurodiverse because everyone’s brain works differently!
The difference between neurodiverse and neurodivergent is in how a person perceives, processes and interacts with the world. Neurodivergent folx have vastly different (not more, not less, just different) processing systems than neurotypical people.
What’s the Link Between Neurodivergency and Mental Health?
I’m very proud of my neurodivergence and wouldn’t change it for the world. But it does come with some very serious challenges like mental illness.
For example, I have sensory processing sensitivities and ADHD. These are complicated by the fact that I also have depression, OCD and PTSD.
And that’s not uncommon for NDs. Most, if not all, of us struggle with adjoining mental health conditions.
Autistics have a higher than average rate of OCD and anxiety issues. ADHDers can struggle to keep up in school which can be pretty soul crushing. And all the neruotypes are prone to depression because of things like the double empathy problem, late diagnoses, masking to appear neurotypical, dealing with unsupportive environments, and bullying.
Basically living as a Neurodivergent in a Nuerotypical world is hard and produces a ton of shame in childhood and adolescence. This shame is something Adult NDs are left to deal with which is also entirely distressing.
Sounds bleak I know, but there’s hope. In my experience, embracing my Neurodivergence has tremendously helped my mental health. Knowing that I’m different led me to seek out supportive communities and new life strategies that work with my Neurodivegence vs. working against them.
Visual Lesson: Mental Illness, ADHD and Cleaning – Neurodivergent Strategies for Keeping it Clean When Executive Dysfunction Strikes
Why’s it so dang hard to clean with you have a mental illness or processing difference like ADHD?
Well, the first and most important thing to know is that you’re not lazy. And it’s not a matter of trying hard enough.
Your brain just might be built differently, meaning typical strategies for organization might not work for you. That’s why MSB has this visual lesson and its accompanying article (peep it here), to help you get a little perspective. And to start thinking about what kind of strategies work for your beautiful ND brain!
Neurodivergent Mental Health Topic: Weight
CW: Weight management/weight loss
Did you know it’s actually a lot harder for Neurodivergent people to manage weight?
Now I don’t tell you this to be a negative Nelly (sorry if your name is Nelly <3). I tell you this because, just like with cleaning, you might need different expectations of yourself. And different strategies to accomplish your goals.
Personally, I’ve struggled with body dysmorphia and unrealistic expectations for my body all my life. That’s why I think it’s really important to know that life doesn’t have to be that way.
You can get affirming body content that helps you find strategies that will help you rather than push you into a one size fits all image. And they’re right here below, check em out!!
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