My Top Articles of January 2023

My five most popular stories on Medium this past month

I’ve been busy!

I published 28 articles on Medium between January 9 and February 9 (I guess this one will be number twenty-nine).

I’ve found there’s an ebb and flow to my writing. I go through periods of feeling uninspired, and then something really pisses me off or makes me feel excited, and suddenly I’m back to writing every single day.

I’m a passionate individual and this has gotten me into a lot of trouble at times, but has also been a strength for me. I think my justice sensitivity guides me and makes me a strong advocate, a theme you’ll probably notice throughout my writing.

I hope you enjoy!

5) How To Study With ADHD

Effective study tips and strategies for fellow ADHDers

I am a self-professed nerd (and proud of it). I love to read, I love to learn, and if school had been free, I would have remained a student for many more years. As it is, I have two degrees, and spend much of my days reading and researching for articles and creating resources for my clients.

I also have ADHD.

ADHD which was not identified until after I had completed my post-secondary education.

Suffice it to say, I have developed some very effective strategies for getting sh!t done.

I won’t claim to have all the answers, I certainly have my areas of strengths and weaknesses, and days when I’m a lot more productive than others. It also takes me a lot longer to complete most projects because I am forever jumping from one task to another.

What works for one person may not work for others, but my hope is to provide an eclectic collection of various strategies so you can find one that works for you.

4) If We Treated Adults How We Treat Kids

There would be a justified uprising

I am a self-professed nerd. I love science, research, and data. I love to read and learn. It’s very important, however, we don’t conflate evidence with ethics, nor objectivity with callousness.

Insisting on following evidence-based practices is one thing, but persisting with said practices despite widespread outcry from those harmed by the very same is abusive.

It’s not really about individual practitioners, it’s about an entire exploitative industry which is based on ableism and eugenics.

I acknowledge there is nuance I am not exploring here, most things are not as black-and-white as we’d like them to be. That said, there would never be enough nuance or grey crayons in the world to ever convince me that treating a human being like a dog in training is okay.

3) The Three Best Autistic-Led Books This Year

It’s only January, and I have already read three amazing books by (and with) Autistic authors

I am so excited about all of the incredible books that have been published, and are soon-to-be published, by Autistic authors.

I am sure I will miss some, and for that I apologize in advance — these are the books which have stood out most for me, and have been incredibly relatable to my own personal journeys of parenting and self-discovery.

Here I review my three favourite books by Autistic authors, all published within the past four months. One was technically released in October 2022, but books which are released in the U.S. and U.K. often take a long time to make it to Canada.

So without further ado, here are my reading recommendations.

2) When You Realize You’re Neurodivergent

Advice for navigating the journey if you’re newly identified Autistic or ADHD

Neurodiversity is a broad term which includes anyone whose neurology is outside of the statistical majority. Neurodiversity and neurodivergent are terms of inclusion, not exclusion.

The philosophy is one which rejects gatekeeping and promotes inclusion. Neurodivergent (ND) can refer to anyone with ADHD, autism, bipolar, depression, learning disabilities, tourettes, anxiety, mental illness, and personality disorders, among many others.

I often refer specifically to ADHD and Autism because those are my neurotypes, and I am knowledgeable about them. However this is never meant to exclude anyone else who identifies as ND.

Advice for navigating the journey if you’re newly identified Autistic or ADHD.

1) Adult ADHD: The Essentials

An explanation of what ADHD is, for Adults

Many parents see ADHD traits in themselves after their child is diagnosed, which makes perfect sense because ADHD is highly genetic and has an estimated heritability rate of 75–80%.

Others find themselves searching for information on their struggles online and end up relating to a lot of Adult ADHD traits, or have a friend with ADHD, and begin to recognize extensive similarities in themselves.

A lot of adults ask, is it worth getting a diagnosis at this point? I’m already x years old, and have muddled through okay for this long, would a formal diagnosis really help anything?

The answer is, as usual: that depends.

Honorary mention: Nobody Owes You Nice

Respect is important, but ‘nice’ is overrated

Being nice is not more important than being thinking critically and calling out problematic behaviour.

People’s feelings are not more important than social justice, especially when those feelings are fragile privileged ones.

I am both privileged and marginalized. I am white and (now) middle-class. I’m also Neurodivergent, Deaf, and not a CIS white male, so I belong to a few marginalized groups as well.

Going with the theme suggested in my title, I’m saying fuck nice today. As such, this article contains NSFW language, so if you find words offensive, you may not enjoy it.

Sometimes growth requires being a wee bit uncomfortable, so hold your nose and put your self-righteousness aside for long enough to learn something, k?

When you join medium, as a member you’ll have access to unlimited reads for only $5 per month. If you use my referral link, I’ll earn a small commission, and you’ll earn my undying gratitude.

If you’d prefer give a one-time tip, you can support my writing on Ko-Fi — also, it’s free to follow me on Facebook and LinkedIn!

February is inclusive education month

Speaking of justice sensitivity and advocacy, I couldn’t publish an article mentioning topics about which I am passionate without including advocacy in our public education system.

It’s supposed to be national inclusive education month in Canada. To mark the occasion, one might think politicians would use this opportunity to announce fantastic new projects and policies for improving accessibility and inclusion in our schools.

This would be a great time to announce specific funding for inclusion training for education staff, money to hire more clinicians and support staff, or at least bring back lunch programs and other programs that have stopped due to funding cuts.

Apparently not. Apparently our politicians think inclusive education month is a great time to insult the intelligence of their constituents. There are many examples of this, but I only need a couple to illustrate my point.

More like this

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Meltdowns, Myth-busting, (Un)masking, And More

Published by Neurodiversity MB

Jillian has Child and Youth Work diploma as well as a BA in Psychology. Jillian worked on the front lines of Social Services agencies from 2003 - 2012. Jillian has taken numerous continuing education courses and has attended various workshops focused on supporting neurodiverse children, in particular children with ADHD.

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