As the founders of sexy genius we feel it’s paramount to clarify that neither of us are experts in the field of neurodiversity.
Sexy genius was founded as a result of personal challenges as adults diagnosed late in life with ADHD and Aspergers. We each lacked proper tools to successfully navigate through communication and social road blocks we encountered in our romantic relationship and as business partners.
Because we struggled to accept and understand our diagnosis, each experiencing fear and shame of being labeled as ADHD and Aspergers, we found solace in creating a brand that would be worn as a freedom of expression and could raise awareness about Neurodiversity. Neither of us wanted to be perceived as odd, difficult or social mis-fits.
As we build this community we’ll be candidly sharing our struggles, the solutions we develop to balance our differing styles of communication and how we rally our way through everyday life with ADHD and Aspergers.
We welcome the experts and the everyday people who are touched in someway by neurodiversity to share their stories here.
Victoria is an “out of the box” creative thinker who lives in shades of grey. She’s a hopeless romantic, demonstratively affectionate, intuitive and likely an empath.
She also confesses to being able to wallpaper the house with parking tickets, late fees and disconnection notices from years of procrastination and disorganization, a fact she shamefully concealed from Brian in the first few months of dating.
Victoria’s ADHD and creative spontaneity have also created challenges for peaceful co-habitation in romantic relationships. A lack of structure, unique style of organization and intermittent focus have brought painful misunderstandings and frustration to many of her personal relationships.
She concedes that acceptance of ADHD came as a result of necessity.
As an adult with ADHD, she’d spent years adapting her skills to conform to traditional corporate environments. She held high-level corporate positions over the course of her career by consistently being able to identify unique opportunities and capitalizing on abstract and untraditional business strategies, but struggled to translate that same level of success as an entrepreneur without benefit of a support staff to delegate minutia to.
After spending this past year researching the most effective ways to capitalize on her own neurodiversity she recognized that the “status quo” corporate model was not the only option. Accepting that the conventional approach to ideation, management and execution would never fit her way of thinking, she made it her personal mission to promote greater awareness and education for ADHD and other spectrum disorders.
I challenge Brian to live more from the heart than the head, to be spontaneous and safely express all emotions. He challenges me to create balance and structure in life and maintain my focus when I’m spinning.
I challenge Victoria to adopt tools to organize and execute on her innovative ideas. I’m her back up and cheerleader. She pushes me outside of my comfort zone and challenges me daily to get out of my head and express my feelings in a safe and loving way.
Brian is the classic Engineer, a natural problem solver, living from a place of reason and logic. For most of his adult life he’s maintained a strict and regimented lifestyle; a diet free of gluten, chocolate, alcohol and caffeine, his daily schedule revolves around three primary things, work, food and a passion for all things outdoors including hiking, cycling, running and skiing. Until recently, human interaction did not rank as a priority.
An Aspergers diagnosis resulted from years of missed social cues, flat demeanor, unfiltered and ineffective communication and a lack of empathy for others. As Brian began to better understand what it meant to be Aspergers, he was able to identify unsuccessful patterns in his life. He recognized his choices were predominantly based in logic, lacking the emotion or “feelings” that typically balance out decision making. In romantic relationships he found more masculine women easier to date because they often required less romanticism and emotional attachment. The compromise however, was that those relationships created a notable imbalance; being emasculated by a strong woman was a concession he made since he felt incapable of tending to a partners desire for emotional engagement and reciprocal romantic gestures.
In the workplace Brian experienced severe frustration with communication processes, he was challenged to maintain peer relationships which ultimately effected promotion opportunities. His logical mind struggled to adapt to shades of grey and fluidity in work processes. His thinking was constrained to solving one problem at a time, with an intense focus and determination which left little time for water cooler chitchat or team bonding.
Brian’s diagnosis and resulting divorce led him down a path of despair and isolation. He was desperate to find others diagnosed as an Aspie and to learn everything he could to become “normal”. With limited resources available and a fear of disclosing his diagnosis to anyone, he has chosen to step up and speak out. Since embracing the diagnosis Brian’s life has soared; three companies, a stronger relationship with family and a circle of close friends, and, Victoria, the love of his life.