Stories from Inside: Part 6
We asked participants of the ADHD Corrections Project to share their stories of how ADHD has impacted their lives, and how this might relate to their experience with the criminal justice system. The resulting journal entries, written towards the close of their eight-week group coaching session, were remarkably thoughtful, hopeful, and compelling. While each inmate’s story is unique, we can also recognize in them some of the unfortunate experiences that are all too common among those with ADHD. With the permission of our anonymous authors, we’d now like to share with you these powerful first-person perspectives on the relationship between ADHD and the criminal justice system.
“Hi, my name is — and I’m nineteen years old. I was diagnosed with ADHD when I was about nine years old. My parents were concerned about my behavior during school. I used to get in trouble in school for fighting, talking during class, and other things like being hyper. I’m from Philly, also known as Philadelphia. There my parents took me to a doctor to see if they could figure out what was wrong with me, and why I was misbehaving in school. The doctor said I had symptoms of having Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. From then on both of my parents took me to a therapist company known as PATH and I was placed on medication for my ADHD. I continued going to PATH until I was thirteen: I then moved to Delaware. I began getting in trouble once again, but this time I was involved for selling drugs. A habit that has continued until I was eighteen years old, leading to my incarceration. I’ve learned so much from being in jail and from the ADHD program. There are ways to improve on my behaviors, I have learned better decision-making skills, being aware, and planning for my future. I was attending — College, and I plan on continuing to go back to school, real estate school, and becoming an entrepreneur. I have embraced my attention deficit hyperactive disorder and gained a lot of knowledge about it and myself and I am a better person now. I’m thankful for the opportunity I got from ADHD.”