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Dealing with Nuerotypicals – Time in a Bottle verse Time in the Bathroom

Posted 01-06-10 at 05:43 AM by meadd823
TIME - is one of the many difference I have observed between myself and the neurotypicals {Nters} in my life. To them time is absolute , five minutes feels pretty much the same to them all the time. They know what day of the week it is and are able to automatically know the date as well. They not only know what today is they know how today relation to other “special days” of the year such as birthdays and holidays. Glancing at a calendar helps them plan but their world is linear and constant. They can actually comprehend a decade fro now – retirement and make plans for it.

They know exactly how long it takes to get themselves ready for work. Because time is always linear and constant they automatically know weather or not they have time to put that load in the washer, their internal clock keeps ticking louder than random ideas, then the desire to squeeze in that one more game and it is what kicks them out of bed in time every morning. They can see fifty things they need to do but that time piece in their head keeps ticking ticking and they are able to follow that time awareness in a straight line fashion dismiss external and internal distractions which is how they can consistently be out the door in time to make it to work and remain within the legal speed limits

While this constant awareness of time which I call absolute time comprehension helps them function in their world it has it's draw backs when it comes to dealing with beings who live according to relative time comprehension We are are not liner and living in a world where no only are most people liner they expect every one else to live in the same time comprehension they do.



While we can comprehend absolute time by watching a clock or glancing at our watch we are unable to mentally live in absolute time comprehension because to the ADDer time is elastic it stretches and shrinks depending upon our type of interaction with the external world. When we are engaged in our favorite activity or having a stimulating discussion two hours feels like five minutes - our brain does not keep ticking off the minutes like the Nters brain does – Our mind tells us two hours is five minutes no matter what the clock says. When we are in one of those boring employee meeting five minutes can feel like two hours – It doesn't really matter what our watch says our brain is unable to dismiss the slow passage of time – we try to stay engaged and focused but our relative time comprehension is unable to become absolute – we are unable to over ride our perception of time passage at will any more than Nter are able to over ride theirs .

According to John Ratey in Shadow Syndrome ADDers are prisoners of the present – we can not connect this moment to the next – nor can we relate it to the past moments in a conscious manner. I am not saying ADDers can not remember but after some in depth discussions with Nters I have found that our memories seem to be less connected to time while being more associated to event or experience. This is an over generalization and in no way applies to all ADDers and Nter on the planet .



As ADDers We require a lot of external reminders to maintain any sort of consistent awareness with regards to the passage of time. We can absolutely adore some one and still forget their birthday or fail to remember it until the very day – we didn't associate yesterday as being the day before your birthday because yesterday wasn't in our minds connected to today any more than today is connected to tomorrow

Because we are being expected to live according to absolute time comprehension in a world where few if any Nters are even willing to admit to the possibility that there is a difference we can often times appear not to care about the Nter A majority of adults are Nters which makes their perspective the “right one” by default, in that most of the world is run according to the absolute liner time model. It does not make us stupid or wrong it makes us different. There is no one single right way to be and most of us can modify they way we are few of us can totally change to become some thing we are nor should we be expected to be that which we were never designed.

. . I understand we do care but we are simply not cognitively equip to adhere to absolute time comprehension any more than the Nter is equip to adhere to our relative time comprehension – it is this difference in comprehension that cause some of the disagreements over matters such as being on time to events, length of time spent in recreational activities, remembering birthdays and special days and touches upon our ability to be patient, motivated and attentive



It isn't that Nters are bad people on purpose any more than we are it is just that we often experience conflict due to two different modes of comprehension regarding time and it application to out lives. This is in no way is meant to be an excuse to be a jerk and disregard the feeling other others weather they be ADD or NT – I am encouraging compromise on both sides of the fence-. It is time to put an end t o blame and finger points because it really doesn't do any thing but make two people feel like piles of poop and accomplishes absolutely nothing worth while.

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Total Comments 5


  1. Old
    RedHairedWitch's Avatar
    Well said!
    Posted 01-10-10 at 04:26 PM by RedHairedWitch RedHairedWitch is offline
  2. Old
    meadd823's Avatar
    Thank you . . .
    Posted 02-18-10 at 10:29 AM by meadd823 meadd823 is offline
  3. Old
    K-Funk's Avatar
    Hmmm....but what about whole societies where time is more of a suggestion than an absolute? (I'm thinking in particular of african nations where 2:00pm means "sometime this afternoon")
    Posted 05-24-11 at 04:07 PM by K-Funk K-Funk is offline
  4. Old
    meadd823's Avatar
    K-funk they have less ADHD diagnosis!
    Posted 11-20-12 at 03:52 AM by meadd823 meadd823 is offline
  5. Old
    Sit-n-Spin's Avatar
    This post describes me to a T. (T doesn't stand for "time," does it? Lol.) A popular television psychologist (whose advice I usually like) tells people who are chronically late that it's arrogant of them to be late, and if it weren't then sometimes they'd show up early. Well, somtimes I do! So, I think a certain friend who makes no effort to show up on time nor even call to say when she might be there (along with many other egocentric activities) might not have ADD, but just be selfish. But I think my issues with time probably are another sign that I had undiagnosed ADD. I do sometimes show up too early and have to wait. Also, I was more likely to be late (when I worked outside the home) when I woke up early because then my routine was off so while I had a little more time I'd misjudge how much more time I had and end up being late instead of early. This all makes sense now in light of ADD.
    Posted 12-07-12 at 01:42 PM by Sit-n-Spin Sit-n-Spin is offline
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