Reply To: How should Adderall effect someone with ADHD?

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Thank you for the replies everyone.

I was on Ritalin (the alternate ADHD drug type) when I was kid briefly because I wasn’t doing my homework in school and a teacher said maybe I had ADD so my mom got my GP to give me something … it didn’t last long though. I don’t remember it, but it supposedly made me emotional and violent. I started punching holes in the wall so my mom stopped that. I’m guessing my reaction to Ritalin was similar to my reaction to Adderall.

In general, with my symptoms … I’m basically like the absent minded professor. I mostly do things like forget why I came into a room or leave the remote in the fridge … or sometimes I’ll stop in the middle of a sentence because I’ve just had an idea. When people tell me things … if its a list of things, or if its a date, or a time … I wont be able to process it. Its like they weren’t even speaking the same language. I heard them speak but no matter how hard i focus, it just doesn’t stick. I can give myself a headache trying to force myself to retain a list. Its like there is a wall. I can be 100% focused. Listen to the person say the words … I’m right there with the person… but the words just aren’t in my head. No access to them. Gone. Zilch. Can’t find them. Like it never happened.

However, unrelated to ADHD (I think), I have word finding problems. I often can’t bring up the name of an actor or actress, or a movie, or a book. Sometimes I’ll have trouble with nouns … I’ll be having a conversation with my wife and say something like … “We need more … oh what are they called … you eat them … their a fruit and round and orange … ” and she’ll say “Oranges?” … “yes, exactly.” … so maybe the list issues and word finding issues are related.

At any rate, anything that ISN’t a list, or a date, or a time … if its sensory information … a story or feelings or an idea … that I read or hear once and I often know it cold. Sometimes for years. Meaning I actually did very well on all my tests, even though I didn’t do my homework because I always knew all the answers. I could remember all the lectures. (which is why I didn’t do the homework – I didn’t see the point)

I also have sensory issues, where when I try to read something like a menu at a restaurant or a phone book (back when we had those) or anything with a lot of columns of text and/or images and other clutter … I can’t see it. Its a blob. I mean, I can see the words but I can’t eliminate the clutter to focus on the parts I want to see … my brain tries to give it all the same priority … I have to put my hands on the page and cover parts of the page to eliminate the distracting details. (I have similar problems when trying to find things in a grocery store or in my house)

I guess I see these things as being my primary struggles, and assumed that if these are caused by ADHD and I’m lead to believe that they are … that ADHD drugs would improve them. Make it so I stopped forgetting why I came into a room or make it so my wife could tell me what time she was getting up for work and I would retain it without writing it down or so I could actually read a menu at a restaurant. And it has done none of these things, even a little.

Although, like I said … i don’t hate the drug. I have unrelated fatigue issues and a general brain fog caused by poor sleep (I cough a lot and have terrible nightmares) … and the adderall certainly helps with those two issues. Its like having a bunch of energy drinks. Wakes me right up and helps me stay awake. Not that its what its being prescribed for … but it was a problem … and it solves it. Just not an ADHD problem.

Anyway … thanks again for your posts. Gives me some things to think about.