Searching for weaknesses

So I was sceptical of the ADHD suggestion, but still sifted eagerly through my life, looking for signs of scattiness. I registered, hopefully, how distracted I got by the TV at Ascot house, which, by Diktat of the management, must be kept on at all times.[1]

TV thought-proofs my brain, jostling out all ideas with its hyperactive chatter, making them seem distant and unreal. Perhaps I lack the ability to focus or to filter out incoming sensory data or at least to prioritise one sort of brain activity over an another [2]. Is it a deficit I was born with, or has starvation compromised my pre-frontal cortex (which governs concentration)?[3] Or does TV do this to everybody?

I knew I talked too much. That was why I’d starved myself silent. Unsure of the right expression, I’d repeat and repeat myself. I hated my gabbling word-hysteria, which left me dry-throated, headachy and embarrassed; bored, because I’d heard my own anecdotes so many times before; frustrated, because all I had to offer was my own experience, my own opinion, and I offered it, and this was the result: in trying to reach out to another person I’d completely failed to connect and was just as isolated as ever. But was I talkative to an abnormal degree? Or not?

And what about impulsiveness? am I impulsive? If so, ADHD could be the cause of such sudden lapses of will-power. It would excuse my moral weakness. Impulsiveness could be a catch-all term, the fuel that drives my conversational completism, my digressiveness, my interruptions and over-talking, my badgering and bullying, my (slightly) (obsessively) compulsive refusal to let things lie; my over-thinking; my fussy over-writing.

Is impulsiveness the reason I had to be one of the main contributors to every therapy session? I told myself I was being kind to the person who was running it; I wanted everything to go well, but I was downcast if somebody else came to the rescue. It needed to be me. Was this solipsism? And was it obviously so? Did I sound like a twat, or stupid or critical or attention-seeking?

  • Footnotes

[1] What is the logic for that?

[2] See Hannah Critchlow, 2018, Consciousness: A Ladybird Expert Book, London: Penguin, p30

[3] Although mental functions seem to be governed by a complex alliance of different neural structures, that stretch throughout the brain. See Carrie Arnold, 2013 Decoding Anorexia, Hove: Routledge, pp22-27

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