Should I go to a treatment program?

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    • #112466

      I have been struggling with marijuana dependence over the past year to help me control some of the tougher symptoms of ADHD. I do not take any medication for it, as my previous psychiatrist refused to prescribe it because he thought I was going to abuse it. He just wasted time and my money by prescribing me non-stimulants that did nothing for me. So, I turned to weed. However, over the past six months, I have developed an addiction problem. I use a concentrated form of cannabis every day, virtually all day long. I decided to see a new psychiatrist, as my old one was unable to help me with this situation. I was told that I need to get clean if I wish to work with my new doctor, either on my own or through an outpatient treatment program, so we can then determine which problems are being caused solely by marijuana usage, and which ones are caused by underlying conditions. Part of me thinks I am strong enough to do it myself, but clearly my impulsiveness is too hard for me to control. I am at a point where I am too tired to even think straight, tired of the constant roadblocks, and I do not know what to do. It seems everywhere I turn, there is always something more for me to do to get the help I need. I am honestly very, very close to giving up on all this ADHD crap that seems to be brushed off by everybody as relatively insignificant, but that has been affecting me for a long time. I also have school commitments, and the program requires me to go five times a week, three hours each time. I do not know if I will be able to do it unless they can be flexible. Should I try to do it?

    • #112471
      Dr. Eric

      As for a referral for someone with experience in “Dual Diagnosis”.

      Someone who works with drugs alone or ADHD alone won’t have the experience to deal with the interaction of the two.

    • #113257

      I don’t know if THIS treatment program is the right one for you, but yes you should go to *A* treatment program.

      Addiction is a pernicious, incredibly difficult thing to deal with, and ADHD makes it even harder. This stuff about “I should be strong enough to do it myself” is your brain playing tricks on you. Needing people around you to help and support is not weakness, it’s good strategy. You don’t go in to fight the Big Bad solo – you need your Badass Brigade to have your back.

      It’s worth a call to see if the program can work with your school committments. An even more likely path would be to talk to your academic advisor and see what the process is for taking a medical leave of absence or getting extensions on your work.

      Students encounter health problems ALL THE TIME, whether it’s major depression, or cancer, or getting hit by a car, or substance issues. Schools have policies and plans in place to help students take the time they need for medical treatment without completely derailing their education.

      You are having a health issue. You may need to take some time for treatment. There’s no shame in that, and it’s not abnormal or weird. If you don’t want to disclose all the details of your situation, your advisor SHOULD be able to help you find accommodations and workarounds without knowing exactly what the problem is. (There’s always the chance they are a jerk, but most are not).

      You should be able to say, “I am dealing with a health issue, and I need to schedule treatments on these days/times for this long. I may wind up missing some classes or have trouble keeping up with my work. What can we do to work this out?”

      Best of luck to you. Hang in there!

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