Adult ADD/ADHD, is that for real? (I think it is)

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    • #74908

      Hello, first time posting.

      I have known all my life, especially after grade school, I was different.
      I am not lazy, if anything I studied hard and managed to graduate college, compare to other kids I had to work MUCH harder.
      Mundane tasks became very difficult, as simple as sorting laundries, putting things back, (hence create piles of stuff)

      Many of you can relate to my situations I am sure, super speed forward, I am a woman in my fifties and recently started treatment for my ADD.
      After struggles I ended up receiving therapy by a Psychiatrist, who also helped me by prescribing medication, I have been
      taking since October last year, which made my life completely better.
      With doctor’s suggestion I follow daily exercise, making lists, using timer for task, etc…

      I come across so many opinions that there is no such thing as adult with ADD/ADHD, it should have been diagnosed
      by age 7….. Well, I don’t think anyone in my age group had a chance to get diagnoses, never mind getting help. This is not some allergy
      problem some get over as they get older, as I understand, it is a life long challenge. And I do agree with that.

      I noticed it’s harder to obtain medications, my insurance company says anyone over age of 23, have to have prior authorization for the
      medications I take. I realize there are many cases of abuses and insurance companies have certain obligation, I guess.

      I would like to hear others with similar or opposite experiences.

    • #74924

      This was my reply. It disappeared after I edit and tried to submit it. sorry for the trouble.

      Hi kw02019,

      I can relate to some of your experiences. You are definitely not lazy! People with ADHD have guilt and we always try hard or find another way to do things. We can get very sad but we don’t give up. We always pick ourselves up and move forward. I also have the habit of piling my things no matter where I am. It’s always this “I’ll do it later” thinking but later almost always dont happen when it comes to organizing objects. I also find it difficult to sort laundry, fold clothes, pack clothes, daily tasks. If I’m going away, I could not pack my clothes and then my family would end up packing it for me because of my extreme procrastination. I also have trouble filling out paperwork. When I live with my mom, I used to pay my half sister $5 or more to fill out paperwork for me. I really hate it. Just looking at forms create twists in my stomach. Most people will say “Why can’t you do this?! It’s so easy!” That kind of comment hurts because it makes me feel dumb and depressed. Or people don’t believe ADHD exists and they say things like “Everyone cannot concentrate if it’s not interesting to them. It’s a normal reaction, ADHD is not real.” They really light up my ring of fire at that point.

      The medication is also helping me. I also found that changing the font also makes it easier to read prints and less boring.

      If the medication is helping you, I hope the insurance company will not give you trouble. In what state or country do you live in? I live in NY and never heard of the over age 23 rule. Asian counties are even more strict. In Japan, stimulants are 100% illegal. Even if you’re visiting from another country and you have a doctor’s note, they will not accept it. It’s the most abused drug in Japan. They cannot understand that ADHD people don’t abuse it and it might be very helpful and possibly life saving considering the statistics in that country…it’s not always just “depression”

      I had a bad day again at work and it was comforting to read your story! Thank you!

      • #74941

        Hi whisperingwings, Thank you for reply.
        Sorry to hear you had a bad day at work….. I appreciate you took time to respond.
        After some months paying full price for my medication, process went through and co-pay is much cheaper.
        Funny you mentioned, I am originally from Japan and growing up, mental health issues can not be talked about nor treated, unless you are
        insane and cause harm to others. I think it’s slowly changing, it hurts me to think how many people can benefit from medication but not allowed to.
        I now live in USA and have been here for most of my adult life.
        I will try reading in different font, never thought of that. When I want to read books, I use audible service. It’s almost like
        my therapy to listen and do something along, I enjoy background music as well as listening to podcast, etc… knitting is also good to calm myself.
        I was anxious, depressed, and always felt like outsider before treatment. ADD can really cause a lot of problems. Tomorrow is another day, hope we all have
        a good day tomorrow.

        Hello Sally,

        I’m originally from Japan, and yes we had a lot of social stigma for anything different. I have to say things are changing, for better there.
        I live in USA now, and blessed with great primary care doctor and psychiatrist. Yes it was hard growing up, especially it was my mother
        who criticized me constantly.
        I used to buy magazines filled with pictures of beautifully organized kitchen, living room, bath room, and get really depressed.
        Thank you for writing about your experience. My piles are less now and getting smaller.

    • #74934

      Hello, my name is Sally and I’m a woman in her late 40’s from Australia. I’m sorry I didn’t catch what country you were from but here in Australia it’s an enormous struggle to get diagnosed with adult adhd.
      Like you I’ve lived with the same stigma my whole life. I come from a small country town where even my local GP said to me “oh I don’t really believe in adhd????!” WTF???
      I’ve struggled with the same issues but have found my ‘symptoms’ have worsened as I approach my menopausal years, and I basically lost the plot for about a year. It got to the point that if one more doctor or psychologist told me I had depression and anxiety I was going to throttle them.
      I felt like saying “of course I’m depressed and anxious you morons! I’m a grown woman who ‘should’ know how to organize her day, or be able to prioritize, or arrive on time, or be well past the “little piles of everything, everywhere so I don’t forget something important” and so on…but I can’t do it!
      Sorry, I think it’s important to mention that due to circumstances beyond my control, I ended up living alone for about a year for the first time, ever, in my life.
      I’d always been surrounded by people who have known me most of my life, and my Mum, who I now appreciate even more than I did when she was alive, because she kept me organized.
      I had no idea I was so dependent on my family and friends! It probably took a good 3 months before the penny finally dropped for me. I was looking at the piles and piles of clothes, sitting amongst the piles of paper work and thought to myself “this is disgusting, I really need to tidy it up!” … But I didn’t know where to start, or what the finished product would look like, or where I was going to put it all and not forget it, … and I just burst into uncontrollable tears.
      So, (sorry for waffling on and on) that’s why I wanted to throttle the so called experts; I was depressed and anxious because I had no idea how to be a functioning adult on my own? ☹️

      • #74946

        My memorized line when I run into idiots who say things like ADHD does not exist is: Let us not confuse opinions with scientific facts. Had an AA sponsor whom I confided in that I “thought” I might have it and was thinking of getting diagnosed and seeking medication. He was a Harvard educated JOURNALIST… was that HE did not believe it existed. I fired him as my sponsor…….It always seems to be EDUCATED MEN imo…I live in a major city…who spout this stuff

    • #75263
      David Rickabaugh

      Yes, ADHD in adults – who were not diagnosed as children – is a very real thing. The lack of a good understanding of this condition in the public at large AND within the medical and psychological communities may be one of the most frustrating aspects of having ADHD as an adult, or suspecting you may. Dr William Dodson has produced some great work – including a webinars and articles here on ADDitude – about this topic. Basically, the existing diagnostic criteria are based only on external observable behaviors of (male) children under 12, and they have no direct relationship to what adults experience internally. He also states that ADHD isn’t truly and attention deficit problem, but an attention consistency problem, which I think is spot-on. I’ve found Dodson’s work to be refreshing and ground-breaking. Have a look at these links and do a search on ADDitude for more from him.

      Article: 3 Defining Features of ADHD That Everyone Overlooks
      Free Webinar Replay: How ADHD Shapes Your Perceptions, Emotions & Motivation

      Good luck!
      – David

    • #76243

      Howdy guys.
      I’m a 21 year old. I’m like 99.9% sure I have some form of ADHD/ADD. Symptoms from childhood to present point that way. I had a university counselor diagnose me unofficially. The “certified” PhD did a terrible job assessing me. He based his diagnosis singularly on consistent fidgeting…
      So here is my question, does anyone have any suggestions for a psychologist/psychiatrist in the Nashville, TN area. (I’m still in college btw)

      • This reply was modified 3 years, 11 months ago by Maxx.
      • This reply was modified 3 years, 11 months ago by Maxx.
    • #76372

      I was recently diagnosed with adult ADHD (August 2017) and it explained everything to me about my life up to that point. My wife (24 years) is still struggling to understand just how this disability affects me. Where I now can say “that’s the ADHD”, she sometimes says “thats an excuse”. We are working on communicating better.

      My doctor told me that it takes me abut 3 times the energy to focus and get something done. Sometimes my brain just gets tired from all the focusing..especially since I hold a job that is demanding organizationally speaking (I really should be working not posting my first post). I spent all last year working 50 hour weeks, then going home physically and mentally exhausted. I was missing things. Not turning off the stove. Not locking the front door. Not closing cabinets etc. I tried a few different medications and I am now on Adderall, which is working pretty well.

      I guess I am trying to say that ADHD can ebb and flow. There are good days and very bad days. Some days I am emotionally disconnected with the world, including my wife. Its not personal. Its just the way I am.

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