I can’t follow directions; I promise I am just as frustrated as you are : ADHD

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I was gifted a subscription to one of those meal kit boxes. I was really excited about it because they’re kinda pricy, so I never would have gotten one for myself. I got my first box and was excited to try it out. I hit a few snags because I missed an early step: I was only supposed to add half the garlic and save the rest for later. I had added all the garlic right away. No big deal, I just chopped some of my own garlic and used that for the second part.

I texted my boyfriend (long distance) about how I goofed it because I didn’t read the instructions right. I had send him a picture of the little booklet and he was confused as to how I messed up the garlic bit. He told me he just read the whole thing start to finish and it was straight forward. I tried to explain to him that I really struggle to read things start to finish. He just did not understand. He asked me how I read it and I sent him this very long text of my thought process and how the instructions were difficult to follow because it made use of 3 text colors, bold, and italics. The other thing is that I’m a decent cook and it felt like the instructions did things in an order that I would not have done if I were whipping up some pasta dish I dreamed up. So that threw me off.

I just feel like to a neurotypical person, there is no comprehension of how something like a simple pasta recipes could be so confusing. He told me next time to just try my best to slowly read the whole thing start to finish. I told him that is possible, but it is like if I told him to speak in an English accent (we’re American), he could do it, but he did not develop language that way so it would be a struggle to actively do that. I do think he was trying to understand, but instead it just made me feel like a 3rd grader in special ed who can’t read as well as the other kids.

That’s the strange part though. I always tested extremely well in reading in school. I would read novels back to back. I can read if something is just paragraphs of narrative. But if there are any pictures, weird fonts, colors, bullet points, etc., I just cannot read it in sequential order.

I’m hoping there are others here who understand. I don’t fuck up directions to be annoying. I’m not stupid. I do know how to read. I have a fucking masters degree, ffs.

I promise I am just as frustrated as you are.

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