Compulsions to do "fun" things

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This topic contains 2 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  ADHDmomma 1 month ago.

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  • #99488

    jackh25
    Participant

    This is my first time posting here, so I hope this isn’t a topic that’s been talked about a million times already.

    I have these compulsions to do things that seem like they would be enjoyable in theory, even if I don’t really want to do them. For example, it can be really hard to resist the urge to play video games when I need to do work, but when I really think about it, I don’t even want to play video games most of the time. I’d much rather go for a walk. I guess something in my brain sees it as the easiest path to pleasure. I’ve been getting better at saying no to that part of my brain, but it tries to trick me by coming up with rationalizations. It often feels like I’m not the one controlling my body, like some other person is forcing me to do stuff I don’t want to do.

    Another example is alcohol. I almost never drink, and I don’t particularly enjoy it, but whenever alcohol is available I have this compulsion to find a reason to drink it. It’s weird because it isn’t something I’ve ever done much, and it isn’t something I’ve ever gotten a lot of pleasure from, but my mind seems to see it as a magic happiness potion. Or, my mind knows it will give me a new experience with no effort, which IS a thing I crave, but not in that way and not right this SECOND. It’s really weird. I know poor impulse control comes with ADHD, but it’s so bizarre that I can KNOW that it’s something I don’t want to do but feel the impulse anyway.

    Does anyone have any thoughts on this? I assume people can relate, I just wanted to share and see if anyone has any thoughts or explanations.

  • #99496

    Verdugo
    Participant

    I definitely can relate, but I don’t know if I can be of any help. I’m struggling with stuff like this myself. What works for me to an extent, is setting boundaries for myself. I often times break them, but at least they work some of the time. Haven’t found a better solution.

  • #99503

    ADHDmomma
    Keymaster

    Both of the things you describe can be a way of Self-medicating ADHD, and even anxiety. A video game is more stimulating to your brain than a walk. And the ADHD brain craves the stimulation it’s lacking. And alcohol can be calming. It also helps you “fit in” in social situations.

    Makes sense!

    Penny
    ADDitude Community Moderator, Parenting ADHD Trainer & Author, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

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