I just want to add to the above insights and suggestions from other people. I am now in the second half of my fifties and have requested of my GP a psychiatric referral with a particular focus on inattentive ADHD. For some reason it is really important for me to have a professional agree with me. I had a UK national health service psych assessment fifteen years ago, after I had paid privately for assessment with a probable ADD outcome, but the psychiatrist I saw via the UK health service was adamant I had an obsessive-compulsive disorder, my GP at the time kept telling me I was depressed and that was the cause of the problems; a CBT person pinned a social anxiety disorder on me. Within the context of inattentive ADHD I can explain all of these: of course I’m depressed! Of course I’m socially anxious – do they not know how difficult it is in groups to maintain attention. I know social skills ‘rules’; it’s just difficult applying them when your mind is all over the place. Yes, I’m anxious, or is it actually the churning of my engine running? As for OCD, yes, I do repeat things, especially those things I like; it helps pin me down, keep me grounded and I get stuck on my emotions, repeating, repeating, repeating in my mind over and over again until I wear myself out. And yes I’m certainly compulsive and impulsive! Now I can add my alcohol use to the list that professionals can use instead of being willing to try with my suggestion of ADHD.
When it comes down to it, I am 98% sure (much of the time, but have chinks when I’m in ‘your lazy, stupid, useless’ mode; quite often) that I am inattentive ADHD, whatever a professional decides I am. But I do crave recognition from a professional. And of course, the professional psychiatric root is the path to monitored and financially less costly medication prescription. Without that I would be financially paying out a lot in self-experimentation and also taking stabs in the dark with medications that I know little about.
Ultimately, I have to live the best I can. But a diagnosis I believe can bring some relief and a sense that I am not as insane as I think I am!