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Emma PC Coordinator.jpeg


Patients' Council Coordinator

I’m Emma and I’m a civil servant. I have two beautiful Bengal cats, a wonderful husband and two lovely (and energetic!) step-sons. I enjoy watching football, keeping fit and I play for a women’s football team most Sunday afternoons.


I left school at an early age, as I was never really a “sit in the classroom” kind of person; I couldn’t concentrate, I had little interest in learning and I needed to be engaged in something more “hands on”.  I tried college but dropped out after 4 months, I just couldn’t do it, it just didn’t engage me- sitting still for long periods listening to someone speak. I tried to stick it out, blend in with everyone else but I needed to be active- I just felt different from the rest of the world. It felt really isolating, I felt a failure. 

When I was 28, my partner saw how I struggled with learning. The desire for knowledge was there, but I just couldn’t concentrate for long enough on a reference book or documentary. He suggested I get tested for dyspraxia. After 2 years of appointments and tests I was actually diagnosed with ADHD.


Looking back, it suddenly all made sense. I wasn’t stupid, I just didn’t have the focus for a class room environment. I wasn’t a naughty child (well, maybe I was occasionally!), I just didn’t know how to release the tension inside of me in a constructive way at such a young age. I wasn’t an anxious person, I was just a fidget and I wasn’t a failure- I just had different strengths.


Throughout my career I have worked hard at what I do, and despite the challenges faced I have worked my way up to a senior position. My ADHD makes things hard work sometimes; if I’m not interested in something then it’s physically draining trying to force myself to concentrate on it. However, if I get focused on something that interests me, I am proactive, enthusiastic and determined to succeed (and I usually do!)


ADHD is a highly misleading label for what is simply an intriguing kind of mind. Often it is seen as a negative trait -hyperactive children who misbehave and cause a wave of chaos wherever they go. The the stigma attached to ADHD is usually particularly unhelpful.


People with ADHD are often original, charismatic, energetic and brilliant individuals with extraordinary talents embedded in their highly charged but easily distracted minds. It is just a different way of living in the world and it only becomes a disorder when it is not adequately managed and allowed to negatively impact on your life. 


Since my diagnosis and starting to take medication to control my ADHD symptoms, I have flourished. In 2017, I graduated with a Masters degree in Criminology from the University of Cambridge and married my soulmate. Having someone around me that genuinely cared and took the time to encourage and support me through the diagnosis process has been invaluable to me, and literally changed my life.


 I know that having someone there, someone that will listen and who understands; can make all the difference to someone’s life. There is no obstacle that can’t be overcome with the right support, and no-one should have to feel alone. That is why I am proud to be a peer worker with Take Off.

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