Reply To: What to do if undiagnosed and suspecting, but your family won’t listen?

Home Welcome to the ADDitude Forums For Teens and Young Adults with ADHD What to do if undiagnosed and suspecting, but your family won’t listen? Reply To: What to do if undiagnosed and suspecting, but your family won’t listen?


I just want to add in my two sense about how you are feeling since this is a very important point of your statement which only fosters all the worst aspects of and ADHD brain. I don’t normally post on forums but I read the comments and one in particular I thought was condescending and conceded enough to prompt me to respond with positive and helpful emotional support.
I know how scary college can be. I remember when I was in your shoes (6 years ago) and I was terrified of going to college and failing. The thing is I had the grades and I was still worried because grades in high school do not determine your success at university. University is an altogether entity from high school but I sympathize with your worry about how expensive it is. It will be hard but please try not to worry about that. The fact that you are worried is a good sign that you are responsible.

The previous posts from people have addressed both adequately and comprehensively how to get diagnosed/resources for ADHD but I want to assure you that it is completely okay to feel everything you are feeling. It in no way makes you any less capable of being an “adult”. Feeling overwhelmed and scared of this next chapter in your life is normal, especially if you have ADHD. Even if you do not it is still okay. Try to embrace it because it will be a great time of self discovery for yourself! It was for me.

You have most likely read a lot about ADHD and know how hard it is for those who have it to find and create structure. We struggle greatly with the linearity of neurotical life and schedules. I know it was stated multiple times above and again here just to clearly emphasize how essential this is: I CAN NOT stress enough how important it is for you (or anyone) to figure out what does/does not work for you in this regard. It is paramount for your success within society that you create the *right* schedule for YOU. As stated above universities do (and must MUST, though the extent of such mandates vary widely) have a disability services office. Now you may be wondering “what is a right schedule”?

Well that answer is challenging to answer. I can tell from what you are currently doing that your current method is not working. Why, I can’t say. It could be it isn’t the right environment but it also could be you may need medication. I do NOT think you are not trying hard enough! Immediately dismiss that thought from your head. ADHD isn’t an excuse but it is an explanation for why those of us struggle in a neurotical environment. It may be why even though you try very hard you haven’t made much progress. Think of it like this, if I got a text with an obnoxious ring tone every 1 to 2 minutes and had to respond immediate to this text for the duration of a lecture how well do you think the majority of people would cope with such things and comprehend the lecture content? That is an ADHD brain. We are constantly fighting to stay focused on a task or forgetting to do it altogether.

Okay great now what? How do you overcome this? Small changes make the biggest impact. Sticky notes are your best friend, a note book to write important events in and obsessive reminders (note your phone may not be ideal if it is a distraction ie if your always using the infinite potential of the internet you should not use it). What’s the common theme in those statements? STRUCTURE. STRUCTURE. STRUCTURE; which is not shocking if you read the other comments. If you don’t know how to handle everything find yourself a very good caring doctor or psychologist who will help you understand yourself and suggest helpful day to day accommodations. Typically a university will have cheap/no cost resources for you to use and I would say 100% you should use them.
I’m sorry your mother said “you’re just not trying hard enough.” Truly, my heart hurt so much when I read that. I’ve heard that statement so often and it is 100% incorrect. ADHD is not bad with proper treatment it is our greatest strength.
I wish you the best of luck at university and hope that this has helped you!