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When I started taking my meds, going to therapy and reading about ADHD it was like I was a new person. Everything seemed brighter, happier and my struggles made sense. Once the newness wore off I was still better, but there were changes.
Yes, like other’s have said, I now have that half of second to check myself before I react. I don’t always do it, but I at least have a fighting chance now. Unfortunately as person re-diagnosed in their mid-40’s (I was diagnosed as a very young child, but my parents never told me) I have many built-in/knee-jerk reactions that are still hard to overcome. I still struggle with impulse buying on Amazon and regret, but am more controlled when I am in a store. Therapy and going to an ADHD therapy group has helped me un-learn some habits and find tools to help moderate my daily living.
If I have one regret about the medication, it is that it has altered my motivation. The “drive” that got me start jogging, to train for a 1/2 marathon and do a Tough Mudder is now gone. Trying to find the gear to get me out of bed in the morning and charge into my day with vim and vigor is all but absent. The trade off is that I have improved my relationships with co-workers by not having the High Drive to work until I drop and hyper-focus on precision that I held them to as well. I can let stuff slide more easily. I can punch out at 5 even when there is still work to be done. I get better annual work reviews and I am not as stressed out about all the stuff I have to do at work. I don’t need to be, I have the chaos of aging parents I can be stressed out about.
There are trade-offs, and they may be different for you. If you are struggling and want to make a change in your life, get properly diagnosed, have the Dr. look for associated issues like OCD, ODD, sound or light sensitivities. Nothing says you have to stay on the same med or continue taking an ADHD med. But, give it several months and find someone you trust and spend a significant amount of time with to give you an outside perspective on changes. Go to therapy so you can to talk though the changes and concerns. Find a regular support group or even just a short term ADHD group to talk about it. Listening to others with ADHD is very enlightening. In the end the medication may do nothing more than let you be kinder to you.