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7 Annoying Things People Say to Neurodivergent Individuals

Living life as a neurodivergent individual can be amazing—full of unique perspectives, creative thoughts, and yes—some rather interesting comments from well-meaning (and sometimes not so well-meaning) individuals. Here are 7 annoying things people to say to neurodivergent people, delivered with a pinch of humor and a mountain of truth.

7 Annoying Things People Say to Neurodivergent Individuals:

1. “You don’t look autistic/like you have ADHD/whatever.”

Ah, the timeless favorite! It seems that I missed the memo on the approached neurodivergent dress code. Maybe I need a shirt that reads, “Neurodivergent: Now in Technicolor!”

Spoiler alert: Neurodivergence doesn’t come with a one-size-fits-all appearance guideline.

2. “Everyone feels like that sometimes.”

Thanks, Captain Obvious! Sure, everyone might experience a bit of what we go through sometimes, but for us, it’s not just a fleeting mood. Imagine living in a world where your brain is on a never-ending roller coaster ride, with no safety bar in sight. It’s not just a temporary feeling; it’s a full-time lifestyle.

Spoiler alert: We all experience ups and downs, but for neurodivergent individuals, it’s not just a passing mood—it’s an extravaganza without an exit strategy!

3. “Have you tried yoga/essential oils/a gluten-free diet?”

Ah, the unsolicited wellness advice parade! If I had a dollar for every time someone suggested a miracle cure, I could buy a lifetime supply of essential oils and yoga mats. While I appreciate the concern, my brain’s wiring isn’t going to magically realign itself through downward dog poses or a sprinkle of lavender oil.

Spoiler alert:  While people’s intentions may be good, prepare to be bombarded with unsolicited wellness suggestions as if they hold the key to neurodivergent nirvana.

4. “You just need to focus more.”

This one is especially popular with the ADHD crew. Yes, let me just locate that mythical ‘focus switch’ in my brain that I have overlooked for so long.  If only it was as simple as pressing a button. Perhaps I should attempt to focus on focusing or… squirrel! 

Spoiler alert: Finding focus is as simple as flipping a switch. I’ll say it a little louder for the people in the back: It’s. Not. That. Simple.

5. “I think you are just being lazy.”

Just because it may take us a bit longer to complete tasks or we need more breaks doesn’t mean we are lounging around like professional couch potatoes. Our brains are working overtime! 

Spoiler alert: It’s not about laziness; it’s about navigating a world that doesn’t always understand neurodivergent experiences.

6. “You can’t be neurodivergentyou are too social!”

Contrary to popular belief, neurodivergent individuals can have vibrant social lives. We may navigate social interaction in our own unique way, but that doesn’t make our struggles any less real or our neurodivergence any less valid.

Spoiler alert: Despite common misconceptions, neurodivergent individuals can be social butterflies! 

7. “I think everyone is on the spectrum a little bit.”

This is a classic attempt to normalize neurodivergence. This statement often oversimplifies the unique experiences of neurodivergent individuals. It’s like saying everyone has a touch of Picasso in their art. Interesting… but not quite accurate.

Spoiler alert: While this statement may be well-meaning and aim to normalize neurodivergence, the fact is that everyone’s experiences are not quite patinted with the same brush. 

This list of annoying things people say to neurodivergent individuals is far from exhaustive! What are some of your favorite annoying things that you have heard people say about neurodivergence? Comment below! 

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