I have ADHD, and one of the symptoms I experience most severely is known as hyperfixation.
A hyperfixation is when someone with ADHD finds something that interests them and becomes infatuated with it. For me, it’s usually fictional universes like Marvel or DC. Hyperfixations can last from weeks to months, or even stick around for years.
When I hyperfixate, the topic becomes my entire world. I have trouble eating enough, drinking enough water, sleeping for a healthy amount of time, and just taking care of myself in general. School becomes the second priority, and I have a hard time staying on top of – or even being able to finish – my work. I spend hours on end in my bedroom consuming my hyperfixation and transferring it into what I like to do. In my case, I like to write.
During the first few weeks of a hyperfixation, I will write obsessively about it. I have written essays about how good the object of my hyperfixation is, made presentations to explain the lesser known details about it to my family, and overall written over five hundred pages of fanfiction about my various hyperfixations.
It might sound silly for a teenager to become obsessed with children’s shows like Star Wars: The Clone Wars, but at one point it was the only thing getting me through the school day.
Hyperfixations are no joke. They’re a symptom of neurodivergency and should be taken just as seriously as any other symptom. People in a state of hyperfixation sometimes mimic symptoms of depression and anxiety like irritability, lack of care for their future, and distancing themselves from other things they would usually like to do.
I hope that this article helps people understand ADHD and its symptoms better. Remember to look out for your friends or family who have ADHD to make sure they’re taking care of themselves.