Stephen was first diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) by his second grade teacher. Stephen was rejected from school at the age of 8 because he could not sit still on the chair and he ended up moving to another school. Over the next 11 years he tried every possible career path till he finally found his element.
From his personal story with ADHD, Stephen tries to show people how ADHD is misunderstood as the inability to focus while it is in fact much stranger than that. It is having a hard time selecting something and giving it full attention. For Stephen, to concentrate and focus he needs something that grabs his attention or picks his curiosity.
ADHD, in his eyes, is a difference in cognition not simply a disorder. People with ADHD are attention different and not attention deficit and therefore what is needed to fix this ” disorder” is not only medication but more importantly a change in the attitude , in the way people think about ADHD. A sound understanding of people with ADHD is required and this starts with parents and schools .
Watch the whole clip to learn more about Stephen’s story with ADHD.
Stephen is a Senior Directing major at Carnegie Mellon. He is also the current President of Carnegie Mellon’s Film Club. He recently completed his Thesis Project within the School of Drama: a production of Mac Wellman’s “A Murder of Crows.” He is currently working on creating a collective of Film Enthusiasts across Carnegie’s Campus as well as other colleges and universities around Pittsburgh. You can find out more about Stephen and his talk on his website: www.stephentonti.com or follow his blog “Caffeine, Nicotine, and ADHD: a guide to maintaining sanity.”