Wednesday, February 23, 2011

ADHD 101: Taking things literally

ADHD shares a few characteristics with Aspberger's, and one of the overlapping areas is that of taking things literally.

I not only take things literally and get mental images to suit (eg: "undressing you with my eyes" - EW EW EW GROSS!), but I also answer questions far more literally than most people do, and the result is that I come across as a smart arse. Here are some examples of conversations I've had.

Example 1:
Me: My friend is having an identity crisis.
Her: Oh no! What about?
Me: Um... Himself?

Example 2:
Her: Why are you slicing up those mushrooms?
Me: Because I'm planning to cook with them.

Example 3 (we'd arranged to meet at the Southland Shopping Centre food court):
Her: Where are you?
Me: Southland.

It's not just that it's literal, I tend to take a broader interpretation. I'm not sure whether I can blame it entirely on being a "big picture" thinker, but what the hell.

So, when you're asking me a question and you want a specific answer, you do actually need to be specific yourself or you'll end up frustrated and I'll just be confused!


  1. You left out the most common one...

    You: *dressing up in gorgeous clothes and makeup*
    Me: "Where are you going?"
    You: "Malvern."
    Me: "Yes, but you're all dressed up. Where are you going?"
    You: "...Malvern?"

  2. But... what would other answers for the first two be? I mean, for 3, you could state where in Southland, but... I can't think of any other answers for the first two...