Fountain Pens and ADHD

Fountain Pens and ADHD

Mar 25, 2021

Hello! This is my second post on buy me a coffee, my main blog is over at

I am someone who has ADHD. I didn’t get diagnosed with it until about three years ago, because ADHD is much harder to detect in women. While I don’t have the typical hyperactivity that’s stereotypical for people with ADHD, I am quite spacey and have always had problems with time management. One of the things that can help to manage ADHD is doing things or using things that engage and stimulate the brain. This is where fountain pens come in!

Fountain pens give me the freedom to tinker and find the right ink to use, or the right nib size. If you don’t like something about your pen, you can even send it off to have the nib reground into something that works for you! This is great for me, and has helped my ADHD in some ways because I write things down a lot more. Writing things down helps you retain information, and can be meditative. When using a fountain pen, it forces you to take more time while writing because you have to orient the nib a certain way and not press down too hard or the tines get splayed.

The brain stimulation (or stimming) that I mentioned earlier is something that people with ADHD have in common with people on the Autism spectrum. Certain fountain pens have a textured grip section, or a textured body that can feel very nice to rub your fingers on. This feels good, and can help manage anxiety. Writing itself can be a form of stimming, as the feedback from the nib gliding on paper can provide a satisfying sensation.

Of course, fountain pens and ADHD can have some downsides. Maybe this is universal to people in the hobby, but it can be hard for me to maintain my pens. You can’t just let ink sit in a fountain pen forever, because the ink will dry out and clog up the pen. I wrote down every pen that I had inked up a few weeks ago, and I had 39. This is too many for me, so I’ve cleaned out a few pens since then but not very many. I’ve read about the different ways that people manage how many pens they have in a rotation at once but I haven’t applied this discipline to myself. I do use all the pens I have inked up just probably not as often as they should be used.

On my main blog, I’ve been doing paper tests to see how long different inks take to dry on different paper brands. For consistency, I’ve been using the same pens and ink for every test. I really want and need to finish these tests because I want to clean out those pens. I also need to finish so that I can synthesize the results into one document for people to read. I keep procrastinating though, because it takes time to count drying times for 12 different pens and inks on multiple paper brands. I also have it in my head that I need to do every test in one sitting, but it would be much easier to do the tests one at a time. This just seems more manageable to my brain.

If you liked this stream of consciousness, please consider buying me a coffee or even becoming a member! There will be more posts like this in the future.

Enjoy this post?

Buy lefthookpens a coffee

More from lefthookpens