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Being diagnosed as a child doesn't make life a cake walk

Being diagnosed as a child doesn't make life a cake walk2012-12-03T23:01:25+00:00

The Forums Forums Emotional Journey My Story Being diagnosed as a child doesn't make life a cake walk

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    Hi everyone,

    I was diagnosed with ADD when I was 7, and I have been on medication ever since. I am now 35. Outsiders who don’t know me very well would probably assume that my life is fantastic and I’ve been a great success. However, I don’t see it that way. I completed a BA at a highly rated school….but it ended up taking me 9 years. Between having an undiagnosed anxiety disorder, which wasn’t caught until I was 26, and transferring to a different school (and ultimately returning to the original school), and sometimes taking time off just to work and save up money…it took an embarrassingly long time.

    I’ve recently completed a Master’s degree, from yet another highly respected school. I even managed to complete my thesis in time. Now, if only I could find a job in my field and in the very large city where I live.

    Now, add that fun stuff to the fact that I don’t talk to my parents, who are 350 miles away from me, because they drive me crazy. As a kid, when I was diagnosed, my parents thought it would be best not to tell anyone. Not even my school or my teachers. They acted like the pill I took everyday was magic and would make me like the rest of the kids. What their decision truly did was give me something to be ashamed of and totally undermined my self-esteem. I have never had much self-esteem. And to make things a little more interesting, my mom was diagnosed with ADD when I was 10. She also takes meds, but she still seems to believe in the magic pill. I know better, there is no magic pill, that pill only attempts to make the playing feel a bit more level.

    I see a therapist as often as I can afford it. Lately it’s been every other week. I’m sure many of you are similar to me, oscillating between feeling that things are ok (but never great) or feeling like things (or something) is falling apart. I am often frustrated, sometimes I don’t know why. I forgot to add, I am married, and have been for almost 6 years, however I also feel like that relationship is falling apart.

    I guess I just wanted to add my story, to let those of you who were diagnosed late in life know that being diagnosed as a child did have some advantages, I excelled at school, but I’m still a mess. (or at least I feel like one)

    There’s no need to reply. I think I needed to vent and have a little pity party for myself


    Post count: 12

    I was diagnosed when I was six years old. Kinda early I think. I was on meds for a number of years, when I hit grade 10 I stopped taking pills, and decided to try and live WITH my add, not against it. It’s helped, and it’s been a wiled ride.

    It all started when I decided to learn about the medications I was on, and made the choice that they were in fact not helping me at all, rather they were designed to slow down the accurance of flipflop bainwaves, ie jumping from one thing to another. that was all fine and dandy rather I also learned that I wasn’t as smart As I was supposed to be for my age because my brain couldn’t perform the way it was initially designed to perform. I had an average IQ. about 105. It upset me because that couldn’t explain why I had incredible Ideas every once in a while that were way beyond me. So i figured my brain was trying to tell me that it had a higher capacity than was being allowed. So I stopped for that sole reason. self-experimentation.

    It has been a very difficult journey, but after almost ten years, My IQ has gone from an averageish 105 to around 135-140. Thats great, however I still have All the bouts that addders have, and have learned to live with them, and accept them. It has helped my personal growth enormously when dealing with acceptance of the self and others, patience, and general understanding of others. I can almost have a full conversation with someone without zoning out onto a different topic altogether, although it has literally taken years just to train my brain to stay on topic, which is still damn difficult. sleeping habits on the other hand are my worst enemy and I might never control them. ie up till 5 am, bed at midnight next day, up at noon day after, bed at midnight. its insanity. I suffered from ultra low esteem when i was younger cuz i just thought i was less than everyone else due to my condition. i grew up out of town which was very solitary, it helped though cuz i had less distractions. I have adhd, and HAD tourettes, but through years. and i mean YEARS, I have slowly learned to control my ticks and outbursts with copious ammounts of excersize, diet, and acceptance that if i don’t give into the tick as i used to, it will eventually subside. the worst part is feeling the tick comming on a few moments of it happening, the build up of unused energy coursing through my viens and muscles.. GOTTA MOVE.. NOOOWWW (kicks over lampshade, knocks coffe to floor, punches desk for spilling coffe0 and breaking lampshade BOOM my fists hurt from punching the desk) F***!!! I did it again….. not so much anymore. still happens tho. especially when im tired. but like I was saying tho, over the years I’ve learned one thing when dealing with information overload and the tempation to do something else thats more interesting. Always have at least five or six things on the go at once. I know its crazy, but if you try and do more than five things at once, youll get bored and switch to the next thing. eventually you’ll rotate and get everything you needed to do accomplished. Thats the only way I can do it. like utra x-treme multitasking for the expert adder u know? but always make sure you try and finnish them near the same time, that way you really see EXACTLY what you accomplished all at once. It makes a big statement unto yourself. instead of puttering around doing one thing, then the next, then the next. your bulldozing everything simultaneously whislt evil laughing and singing supercalifragilisticexpialidicious. yar. also a good thing to do, is look back at your accomplishments, like the major ones, over the course of your life and ask this simple question; out of my day to day, how many people do I actually know personally who have accomplished as much as I have? and really put the thought into it too. you’ll be amazed. for instance. I still loaf about as if I’ve never done anything, no accomplishments to speak of. but when i think about it. I used to be obese, like rly big. now im 155 pounds, and keeping it off. for almost four whole years. ive donated almost 2000 hours to community services and volenteer work. ive painted a few amazing pieces of artwork without even knowing beforehand that i could infact paint. I delivered one of the most memorable speeches my entire family has ever heard,(very very big family over 2 countries), at my grandfathers funeral. it was a funeral yes. but someone had to say SOMETHING. it was a half hour speech. And I surprised myself as much as anybody else. I have been the inspiration for a book written by one of my friends, even tho he only published 150 copies, still pretty cool. I can longboard. swim. run. read at over 500 worlds a minute, type at 300+ if i disregard gramar and sound.. the list goes on. what I’m trying to say is this. that even tho sometimes you have large bouts of low self-esteem, all you need to do is recount all the awesome things you’ve part taken in your lifetime, it just takes some time to remember. even the small things, and even if you’ve made a fool of yourself, did people experience joy because of it? ergo because of you?. I bet your a hell of a lot more awesome than you give yourself credit so just stay excellent to people. your positive self esteem will start to protrude out of your many orafaces before you know it 🙂


    Post count: 25

    Like your title says how even if they tell you when ur a kid still doesn’t make life easier.I was also diagnosed as a kid.The docs told me i had ADHD but i dont remember when i was told just going off what my mom told me that it was around the age 4-6.Something like that she told me that my pre-school teacher thought i was a demon child,lol.Right now I’m 22yrs old going on 19 mentally,lol.Like what both y’all said about college it’s a big struggle.I tried to go to college after high school but after the first year i felt like no matter how hard i tried i just kept failing and drowning.Kept changing my mind on what career path i wanted to go on seems like a million times a day,lol.I took meds in elementary school  but then in middle school they started to make me feel depressed so i stop taking them.Didnt take anything in high school but then started the summer before college.I swear it Vyvanse is like the most greatest ADHD/ADD med to have ever been made.It’s like a huge life save once u take it correctly,lol.I used to be horrible about remembering to take meds,at a right time,ect.Took me like 2yrs to start taking them right and getting my mind more under control.I ended up having to buy like those med containers that tell wat days of the week and AM/PM. I got it after this one time i ended up blacking out then trying to remember if i took my night meds which i felt like i did.Later around 10pm i started to notice side affects and ended up learning i ended up taking the vyvanse at night.It was horrible because my heart rate sky rocketed,my blood veins felt like they would all explode inside me,shaky as hell,and dizzy.I couldn’t sleep all night but the funny thing was i had a doc appointment that day so i could tell her all about my mess up,lol.Also like the last person said yes the low-self-esteem is a bitch to try and pick urself up with because it’s hard to stop focusing on how sad u feel.Like u feeling that ur just a mistake or burden to any person u meet.Trying to stop thinking that negative and think positive is hard most of the time. Most of the time it works when u just drag urself away from what sad thing ur overly focused about and watch some funny show,cartoon,or anime.Anime’s are pretty good for that because of the funny faces.With my hyperness part of having ADHD i feel like im living a life like anime chars do with the dramatic expressions,face expressions,and crazyness.Which i don’t hate at all i do hope I’m just like an anime char.Sadly i do know that for any guys i get in relationships with after a couple of weeks or months i end up driving them so crazy they run for the hills.Which is depressing at times but then i realized i really didnt have to much of a connection with them ex this one guy im with which i keep fucking up.Which makes me hate myself a lot because he’s awesome as hell and the only person i’ve ever felt comfortable with.Im not sure how well im staying on topic now,lol.Any mawhozals( i dont care that isnt a real word because it’s my word so it stays spelling corrections thingy!) Also i loved the part the guy above said about over energy with the slipping coffee,knocking things over,destroying houses.Sometimes it’s funny to tell others how u want to do that but at times ppl get mad at u for it.Also did anyone else who had ADHD/ADD and still do as an adult……damn it i lost my train of thought of wat i was going to say after…..give me a minute to try and remember……maybe a couple of hours…….NOW I REMEMBER!Ok to wat i said above but adding when you where a kid u didnt have really bad stress/anxiety but then when u became 17 or around that started to developed really huge horrible anxiety and paranoia? I know I’m barely an adult by law not really mentally but i ended up having that issue.Like if i think about having an interview my mind goes crazy with negative thoughts.Like “what if i ask the wrong questions?what if i dont ask important questions at all?Oh god what if i answer what they say wrong?! Oh no even worse i might not understand what they ask me and if i ask them they will get mad and yell and call me stupid.Oh….for…the…love….of….god!!!!!WHAT IF THEY THINK IM CRAZY AND I DONT GET THE JOB!” *spirals down in a pit of disrepair* Yeah i suck at trying to stay cool and not worry if people dont like me and stuff like that.Anyways same as the dude first i just wanted to let ppl know some part of my story of it all.I probably got far off topic but thats ok i was having a rough day to begin with.Started a fight with the dude i’ve been with for almost 2yrs now wich is a world record for me i’ve never made it past a year.Sadly iv’e really hurt him and i feel lower than dirt atm but typing this did help me feel a little better.I hope anyone who reads my crazy writing here smiles to.


    Post count: 906


    Crazy off topic rambling is not all that uncommon around here. However, if I may make a suggestion, try to break things up into short paragraphs if you can. It makes it easier for the rest of us to read. 🙂

    It’s good that the Vyvanse is working so well for you. I hope it will work as well for me. I can’t tell right now because I am not taking enough, just 20 mg. Thank you for sharing the story about your mix up and accidental overdose. That is very good for others to know, what kind of symptoms they may have if they overdose. Since I only have meds to take in the morning, it’s not as much of a problem for me.

    The increase in anxiety could be caused by a lot of things. But it is very likely that it is related to ADHD. As you get older you have more responsibility. You are an adult now and have new demands and expectations placed on you. And that is a little frightening when you have ADHD. You are naturally afraid of screwing up.

    It is hard to do but you have to try not play the “What If?” game. Try to only focus on the present. When you have something like a job interview just prepare as much as you can- make sure you get enough sleep, remember your meds, eat something before you go, stay hydrated…etc. That will help to make sure you are able to focus. And you can prepare for the interview itself by doing a little research about the company, if possible, and by practicing some of the questions that might come up with someone you know, getting some advice from someone who is more experienced.

    I have a friend who has worked in management for many years. He has helped me to prepare for almost every interview I ever had. When we were younger he looked over my resumé and edited it for me. And the last job interview I had he coached me through how to answer questions about my previous job because I had been fired. And it worked, they hired me.

    I think if your guy stayed with you for two years then there is a good chance you can get past this fight. Does he know that you have ADHD? And does he understand what that means?

    There is a lot of good info here and resources to help you. You are not alone and things can get better.


    Post count: 25

    Thank you for the suggestions i agree completely with you now i just need to remember to break the different things i say up,lol.

    Well idk if this other thing happens to everyone who takes vyvanse but I know for me 50mg is the amount that works for me and doesnt cause any side effects like if i go to 60+.Anything over 60 i end up with a little bit of shakiness,a little more paranoia,and tic/muscle spasms.

    The main drive for my fear of screwing up and if anyone else is the same.It’s mainly like over time when u do screw up end up having people a lot of times yell at you for it.Then they end up making you feel 10 times worse.

    On the helping with job interviews *finds notebook and writes down “find someone to help me with interviews.” After having 2 small type jobs i’ve made me a little scared of having bosses.First job i ever got was at this plastic factory type place and the boss liked making jokes about seeming like he was mad then saying just kidding.Then i ended up doing the job faster than how the machines went so it took like 5 mins for the machines to catch up.While standing around for 8hrs.The stand wasn’t so bad since sometimes having racing thoughts is a good thing and makes u forget if ur bored or not,lol.How i lost that job was i ended up seeing others not staying at their machines the whole time so i asked a friend who worked with me if that was allowed.They replied,”as long as udont get behind and get the job done.”So even though i never got behind and did my best they didn’t smile about walking around,lol.Then the 2nd job was at this ice cream shop which was epicly awesome ex when the place was dead and u had nothing to do but stand and try to find something that needs to be done.Then on super busy days the boss would yell at me to go faster even though i was going as fast as i could while remembering all that the ppl ordered.How i lost that one was because i wanted to find a higher paying one and i got a call.Was hanging out with friends that day and kept telling them how i had that interview later.Then time past and i ended up beng late.The place was closed and i had told the manager at the ice cream place about it and so she let me go the minute i told her.So that was a lesson learned.

    Yes,i’ve told the guy im with about me having adhd and i’ve sent him some sites to help him learn about it.I read them first then would send them to him.I try not to bring up my adhd issues to him because in fights it ends up just seeming like excuses to him.He end up repeating about how i’ve had 2 yrs to fix all those issues i have yet i keep doing the same mistakes.Then when i do make promises that i wont screw up again or do those things again.When i end up lose my temper or something upsets me i screw up again.Just i don’t know how to fix what i messed up.Even when he tells me how to fix it just the wires in my brain are not putting them together right so the signal isn’t really making it through.I’ve always described it as like when you try to speak english to someone who doesnt know english at all.The person is hearing the words you say but doesnt understand their meaning.So then when i hear him or others talk it’s like im hearing the words but i dont understand what they mean at all.In most ways it almost seems like the words sound more like a blob even though im focused.I’ve always been curious if all people with ADHD have this happen to them as well.


    Post count: 906

    That is much better. It looks more organized and well thought out. 🙂

    It seems like you have pretty severe hyperactivity so I imagine it’s difficult for you to slow down and think about what you are typing. For me, it’s the opposite. I take forever to type a comment, especially if there are any distractions around me.

    Everyone reacts differently to medication. Some people can’t take Vyvanse at all, some people do well with lower doses, some with higher doses. I know one person who takes 120mg a day. It all depends on your body and your brain.  It sounds like you have found the best dosage for you.

    It’s the same for all of us, with the screwing up, getting yelled at, getting anxious about screwing up again. It can really hurt your self esteem after awhile. That is actually one of the biggest problems I have. I am so anxious, so afraid to try anything, that I end up doing nothing. I get “stuck”, which is also very common for people with ADHD.

    I am stuck right now. I lost my job and have no idea what to do next. There are no jobs that I am qualified for that I actually want. I have some ideas about courses I could take and jobs I could try, but I can’t commit to any of them because I am too afraid of screwing up. Or worse, being bored. I can’t stand the thought of going to all the trouble and expense of taking a course to get a job only to find out that it is boring as hell and I hate it.

    I have worked in a couple of ice cream places and had the exact same problems. When it’s busy, I get frustrated and flustered and I have trouble keeping up and remembering things. When it’s slow, and there’s nothing to do…..well, that’s when I get into trouble. My mind wanders. I start to daydream and lose track of time or forget what I am supposed to be doing. I decide that since it’s slow I’ll go and get a coffee and on the way to get the coffee something in a store front catches my eye and I think well, it’s slow anyway, I don’t really need to hurry back……

    Fortunately, I like to clean, so I was always able to find something to do, pulling machines out and cleaning behind them, washing walls, all that kind of stuff. When I felt like it. It was the days I didn’t feel like working that hard when I struggled just to keep myself from leaving the store.

    What kind of work is best for us is as individual as we are. The basic rule of thumb is that it has to be something that you find interesting. And ideally, it should be busy enough to keep you from getting bored but not so busy that it overwhelms you.

    I am probably the worst person to get relationship advice from. But the things that you describe here,  making the same mistakes over and over, not following through on promises you’ve made, losing your temper or getting frustrated…..They are all ADHD traits. And they are not likely to change any time soon. You will always be who you are and you will always have ADHD. You can learn to control it a little better by recognizing what is happening and understanding why it happens. And your partner needs to be able to do the same. He needs to be able to see when you are frustrated by something and know what the best way to help you with it is. And he needs to understand that when you keep repeating the same behaviour it is not your fault and to be patient with you. And he needs to understand that you didn’t break your promise on purpose, that you either forgot or just couldn’t control yourself.

    Have a read through the forums here and you will find lots of comments on relationships, both from people with ADHD and from their Neuro Typical spouses.

    And I think that is enough from me for today. 😉


    Post count: 158

    @angelicdemon: Um, pfffft to your bf (no offense). But 2 years to “fix” all your issues. Nope. There is nothing to fix. You get to decide which things you want to work on to make better. But you will make the same mistakes or forget the same things again and again. And that is perfectly OK. It is how your brain works. There is no cure (or “magic pill” as Pam 13 said) that will make your ADD traits disappear. Hopefully you will find ways to work with them.

    I was going to give you a pep talk about “screwing up”, but I have to admit that I still feel that way too. A lot less than I used too, but every time I leave work 1/2 hour late, 1 hour late, I get that sinking feeling again. There I go again being unreliable about time, and people at home are waiting for me. So I will save that pep talk for another time 🙂

    Words sounding like a blob – ADHD often overlaps with auditory processing issues. So although your ears may hear fine, information can get a little scrambled somewhere between your ear and your brain. Sometimes (not always) it helps to limit background noise (turn off TV or radio if you are trying to hold a conversation, pay attention to noise levels around you when you are out and about).

    I haven’t been assessed for it, but I am pretty sure I have mild problems with processing. I simply can not talk if the radio is on. Trying to hold a conversation in a noisy restaurant is extremely difficult, especially if there is a radio or TV on with an announcer talking. Being in a large group is always hard because it’s hard to follow the conversation. When I was younger, I tended to hone in on one person to talk to at a party because I felt lost in a group. I used to put it down to shyness but I think processing conversation with so much competing noise was a big part of the problem. It’s not quite the same as the blob of words you describe, but auditory processing issues take many forms.

    Let me know if you want more info about it, I’d be happy to find some useful links to post.


    Post count: 25

    Yeah having the severe hyperness  has it’s ups and downs but it’s mainly a pretty good positive.Like nothing can put me in a bad mood when im hyper because thats when I’m nothing but super happy.Also When my aunt had my 2yr old little cousin at her house.Her and my other cousin ended up dead tired.So then i started playing games with him and not to long he ended up sleepy and tired,lol. It’s also weird as hell with what makes the hyperness go speed of light seeing everything in slow mo speed.Soda’s like coca cola,dr,pepper,and even most energy drinks don’t make me feel more hyper.Red Bull seems to be the only one that can but i have to have a HUGE can of it and drink it all fast.Now the number one enemy of already being hyper is……coffee.*scary music starts to play* Omg i cant have coffee at all it makes me so hyper i feel like i could bounce around walls and run around the entire world 5 times in less than 10 seconds.Then i end up like im going to have a heart attack from the extreme hyper,lol. It doesnt even need to be a lot a very very small cup can cause all that craziness,lol.

    Today me and him talked some about it.I told him straight up that the cycle of screw ups will be harder to remember to not do again.But that i could promise i can work on how bad i react to whatever has set me off and make me want to destroy a village.

    Omg yes the “stuck” feeling is the worst.It’s like in your mind your trying to talk yourself into climbing a really high mountain that will take days.At times it’s like “yeah!I can do this!” then a couple of seconds after actually trying to climb up it,”Oh god please don’t make me do this!How about we try again in never.” then your other self is having to chase and catch the other and yelling at them to stop being a scary cat and do it.Then that back and forth yelling,fighting,crying,making up,trying,and then starting the fight all over again.Well idk who all has this battle in their mind,lol.

    You are a very brave person for having that one job in the first place.I think about getting a job at like some normal store in town and i start to have a panic attack.The career I’ve been set in stone for 1yr now and haven’t changed my mind about is become a personal trainer.I love working out and i like helping people and i don’t see how i could get bored while doing it.The only giant wall that’s in the way of starting to go for that is taking come college classes to become certified. I’m trying very very hard to avoid anything that makes you go in a class room.I’m hoping i can find a really good one that i can do online.Now i just need to stop hiding under my bed and build up the courage to get started,lol.

    Reading both comments I ended up thinking about all my ADHD funny moments from childhood till now.Like once when i was like 5-6yrs old around that I would have a yelling fight with my older sister.This fight was over for some reason i was 100% convinced that my birthday was before her’s even though she was older.I didn’t back down at all i believed it so strongly.Finally i came to my senses and realized i was wrong,lol.



    Post count: 906

    Auditory processing, yes. I didn’t know what to say about the word-blob thing before, but that makes sense. One time a customer in the store I was working at asked where the plungers were and I replied “Sorry, we don’t carry blenders.”

    I’ve always wanted to be hyper in a positive way. But when I am hyper, I can’t focus at all and usually get very little done.

    That is exactly what it’s like, wanting to climb the mountain one minute and wanting to take a nap the next. If I don’t strike when the iron is hot and act on that motivation as soon as I get it, it’s gone again in an instant.

    Working at some point in time becomes more of an issue of survival than being brave. I can’t really afford to be off work now, but I am in a position where things are not desperate so I am taking a little time to breathe.

    Finding an online course is a good idea, if you know you will have the determination to stick with it. If it turns out you have to go to college, look into all of your options. There may some assistance available to you to help get you through it. At least you have a clear idea of what you want to do, which is the first step.


    Post count: 25

    Maybe you should ask your doctor if they could raise your vyvanse? For me my vyvanse is the big reason why i can be my normal hyper but be able to focus well.Some days even with vyvanse it’s hard to focus on anything or stuff for to long.But most of the time it helps make focusing easy even with things i hate.

    Even though you said it’s at a point where not having a job is an issue of survival.At least you are able to get that little time to breathe.Any time of stress and feeling like the walls are closing in are worse than hell.Also if you find getting hired for another job to feel almost impossible.Try not to feel like it’s your ADHD/ADD that might have got in the way.Not to make my older sister feel bad but right now she is 25.Went to college for like 6yrs and got her degree.She doesn’t have any learning issues and have like a 3.5gpa in college.For 1yr since she graduated she’s been having trouble find any one to higher her for a job in the field she studied for.So to me that just reminds me that sometimes it doesn’t even matter if your super mega smart,do everything right,and never fail with jobs you do.Basically all the people who hire are super mega picky and can be super jerks,lol.

    Even though atm I’m only 22yrs old so far the major turning point in my life.That got me to grow up some and become a little more serious about my life.About almost 3yrs ago I wrecked my car and it got totaled. I was going the speed limit around a curve and it was night like around 9pm.Normally the road i was on was never busy or had anyone driving them around that time.So i figured it wouldn’t matter if i went a little over the yellow line.Thanks to my luck a car was coming around when i was on that side so i got on my side fast enough.The other person didnt slow down at all and felt like they had their bright lights on.I ended up over correcting went off the road a little,got back on the road,over corrected again,off the road,back on,and then lost control.The car flipped once or twice i think.Then landed upside down and lucky for me one window was busted so i had to crawl out from that one.I walked away with a cut on my lower neck from the seat belt because I’m short and a really sore body.Sadly ever since the wreck I’ve been to scared to try and drive again.

    I knew that if i was really serious about becoming a personal trainer i needed to start working out more constant.It took me a yr but now I’ve been constant with working out for 2 months now.Main thing that makes it easier for me to work out more constant is i have a treadmill in my room,lol.So i set my computer high on something and have some show playing while i walk other wise i would be bored and couldn’t do my walking for 1hr,lol.


    Post count: 906

    Oh, if only it were as simple as asking my doctor to increase the dossage….

    No offense to your sister, but getting a university degree does not necessarily prove you’re smarter than everyone else. I have known a lot of university graduates who were none too bright.

    The opposite is also true. Not getting a university degree does not necessarily prove that you’re not as smart as everyone else. Many people who have difficulty in school are actually very bright.

    Most university grads don’t find work  in the first year. Unfortunately grades don’t usually don’t mean much outside of school. And employers sometimes have strange, hidden reasons for hiring or not hiring someone.

    I would be scared to drive after an accident like that too. But maybe of you start slow, go out with someone else and just drive for a little bit, somewhere there is no traffic, you can get your confidence back. It sucks not being able to drive.


    Post count: 3

    I don’t understand the @people thing …do you just write it? Then you actually have to remember people’s name to respond?! Maybe I’ll have to write the names down…I forget by the time I scroll up and back, or remember the name, but not the spelling.

    ANYWAY. @the people who posted about being diagnosed as children. I’m sorry to hear what you’ve been through, but reading your stories really helped me.

    I am 50 and only recently found out I have ADHD. Initially, I was angry about missing out on what could have been.

    I have always been awkward; never lived up to my potential. I started drinking and using drugs at 13, which became a big problem by the time I got sober at 25: a DUI, a couple felony charges for cocaine and just general self loathing.

    I finally got a BA, but never managed to get a ‘real’ job, only a slew of low-wage, take-it-or-leave-it kind of jobs. Lots of failed relationships; a marriage ending in divorce.

    During the separation, I had a bipolar diagnosis and spent about 2 years on heavy, sickening medications that made me feel worse. Now, 10 years later it’s obvious that I’ve never had an actual manic episode and my depression isn’t the stay-in-bed-can’t-function kind– it’s the ughh-I’m-such-a-loser kind.

    Reading your stories made me realize that a diagnosis isn’t much help if you don’t have a network of support and understanding. If it was so lacking for you guys 10 or 20 years ago, I’m sure it would have been that much more lacking 45 years ago. Without much information and knowledge of ADD in general, I would have probably lived the same life, just with a label.

    Even the BP stuff still could have happened- I was highly emotional at the time, the two are similar, so who’s to say some Dr. wouldn’t have made the diagnosis and put me on those meds anyway.

    So thanks for your sharing. It’s helped me to let go of the what-ifs and what-could-have-beens!



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    i didn’t get the @people thing at first either. The reason for it is so that the person will know that you mentioned them.  it shows up in their “news feed” and also in the little button right beside your user name at the top of the page, you will see a number, if you click on it it will tell you “blackdog mentioned you”. You will also get an email every time someone uses your name with an @ in front of it.

    You are very, very welcome and I am happy you have found the forums helpful. Thank you for sharing your story with us. It always helps to hear about what others have experienced.

    Im sorry you had such a crappy experience, with the drugs and arrests and misdiagnosis. And hearing that makes me realize that I have nothing to complain about. My life has been a cake walk by comparison. and that is a reminder that I needed. Thank you.

    Those bipolar meds are nasty. I have narrowly escaped the BP diagnosis several times. Though I do sometimes have the “stay in bed all day” depression, I don’t have the manic episodes. Or at least, not very often.

    You’re right about being diagnosed as a child. It probably wouldn’t have done you any good and it might have made things a lot worse. Especially if you were diagnosed as manic depressive. The meds at that time would likely have been even worse. It also could have got you locked up in a psychiatric hospital and subjected to some very unpleasant treatments. Our understanding has fortunately come a long way in that area as well.

    Its hard to let go of those what ifs and I have been struggling with it a lot lately myself. So thank you for reminding me to move forward. And right now I am going to move forward to my bed because that’s where I should have been an hour ago.


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