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Someone has it, but no one can see!

Each day more people are diagnosed as having a concentration and/or memory disorder, anxiety disorder, mood, or even emotional disorder.

Chances are, you are not aware of everyone’s challenges, even those of your closest colleagues. Working with one of these challenges daily can be very difficult and requires our understanding.

In a 2022 Stack Overflow Survey, 16,000 developers responded to the following statements.

  • 10.6% said “I have a concentration and/or memory disorder” (e.g., ADHD…)


ADHD is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders of childhood. It is usually first diagnosed in childhood and often lasts into adulthood. Children with ADHD may have trouble paying attention, controlling impulsive behaviors (may act without thinking about what the result will be), or be overly active.

  • 10.3% said “I have an anxiety disorder”

Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety disorders are a type of mental health condition. Anxiety makes it difficult to get through your day. Symptoms include feelings of nervousness, panic and fear as well as sweating and a rapid heartbeat. Treatments include medications and cognitive behavioral therapy.

  • 9.7% said “I have a mood or emotional disorder” (e.g., depression, bipolar disorder…)

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that causes changes in a person’s mood, energy, and ability to function. People with bipolar disorder experience intense emotional states that typically occur during distinct periods of days to weeks, called mood episodes. These mood episodes are categorized as manic/hypomanic (abnormally happy or irritable mood) or depressive (sad mood). People with bipolar disorder generally have periods of neutral mood as well. When treated, people with bipolar disorder can lead full and productive lives.

  • 4.3% said “I have autism / an autism spectrum disorder” (e.g., Asperger’s…)


Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability caused by differences in the brain. Some people with ASD have a known difference, such as a genetic condition. Other causes are not yet known. Scientists believe there are multiple causes of ASD that act together to change the most common ways people develop. We still have much to learn about these causes and how they impact people with ASD.

  • 2.8% said “I have learning differences” (e.g., Dyslexic, Dyslexia…)


Dyslexia is a learning disorder that involves difficulty reading due to problems identifying speech sounds and learning how they relate to letters and words (decoding). Also called a reading disability, dyslexia is a result of individual differences in areas of the brain that process language.

These significant numbers should make us think carefully about inclusion and respect. Each company hiring neurodiverse professionals is doing something that benefits our society, even if the staff member never discloses their condition.