Reply To: Self medicating before ADHD diagnosis?

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fran w

Hey, last night my 15 year old daughter told me that my mental health scared her, she was worried that she was going to lose me. I had to promise her I would never take my life, and whilst I promised it there was an underlying regret that that is not and never will be an option for me. I was drinking non alcoholic beer, wishing with every last fibre in my body that it was actually the real stuff because it was the only thing that stopped the mess in my head. Like you, no amount of meditation, or anything else for that matter stops the noise. I drank, that was my self medication… and everyone accused me of having a problem. I was diagnosed at 46 and 18months on I have just two people in my life who support me, one is a friend down the road and the other lives across the Atlantic in America. I have no other support, life is bloody hard work, but I finally found a doctor who listens to me, and she has my back. The mental health services are no help, most doctors are no help, and even the private specialist consultant that diagnosed me couldn’t really give a shit unless I pay her, I don’t have that sort of money, so I’m on my own. I am now on a controlled drug called Elvanse. I don’t know if it’s the best drug for me as I don’t know anyone who knows about ADHD but it helps with fatigue and you know what, if that’s all it helps me with, I can handle the rest. I stopped drinking, and smoking and my symptoms got worse, but I can’t relapse because the alcohol and the drug I take just don’t mix, but I miss it every day, and the idea of being in a stupefied state just one more time is an overwhelming reality. Follow ADHD posts on Instagram, read as many articles on this site as you can, find a therapist who will help you build your self esteem (I’m in that process) and don’t give up. Treat every day as a new chance, to survive if nothing else, you must learn to love yourself unconditionally, stop the inner critic, mindful self compassion will help with this. Eliminate from your life the stuff/people that don’t contribute positively and make your self a priority, because without you, your baby girl can’t have the mumma that you truly are. As I write this, I am reminded of what I need, this is the first time I’ve shared my story in response to someone else but I read your post by chance and I feel your pain… every last ounce of it… you aren’t alone in this world, remember that, but remember also that there is no hierarchy to pain and suffering, so not for one minute am I suggesting that you are suffering any less than the next person. It’s really really hard, but you have to keep going, even if it’s just for today, just for today, just for today.