My Forum Comments
Hi Jennie or Lily – apologies was unsure of your name.
I wish you well with your university assessment. I may not be the best person to interview as I don’t have a formal diagnosis, and I have heard that in the UK for people of my age (over 50) that professionals are reluctant to give a formal diagnosis, and my rather recognise traits that are symptomatic instead. I actually prefer this rather than have a label as we are all so different, so a trait/symptom I have other people may not have.
I am still waiting for my psychiatrist appointment; there is a long delay within the UK service due to the demand placed upon it. I am looking into using my partner’s private health care arrangement which I should be able to access.
In the meantime, I am prescribed mirtazepine, an antidepressant, which although I am unsure that it’s working for me as an antidepressant, does ensure I have a good nights’ sleep and slows me down during the day, which seems to allow me headspace as well. I’m unsure about these effects, maybe uncomfortable with them, or maybe just not used to being slower and more paced.
I’m also exploring supplements, with care as I know the potential for mis-use and playing with something that I have limited confidence with and limited intelligence. I am doing this through a site called Self Hacked. There is a mine of information on this site. I am for example currently trying DL-phenylalanine first thing in the morning and I believe I am noticing a benefit beyond any placebo. I am also carefully trialling a range of other supplements, and will continue that experimentation.
Apologies, I have gone on a bit here. What I am really wanting to show is there may be alternatives out there other than a medically prescribed medication or, in my case, perhaps a combination of a prescription and supplements.
I just want to check with you dff, how come the doctors are accepting to prescribe you the medication? I can survive without the diagnosis, and have survived without a medication I suppose, albeit I think in a very inconsistent and quite destructive way particularly my education. I would like a trial on meds to see if one of them helps even if it is only Wellbutrin the anti-depressant.
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!
Thanks very much Lisa. Only one reply came through, but I’ll check whether that podcast #150 is the same that I listened to. Best wishes. Paul
this is my first response on the forums. I don’t know where you are based, but I’m in the UK, and again (after two unsuccessful attempts as far as professionals agreeing with me is concerned) will have an appointment with a psychiatrist and I have asked of my GP that there is a focus on ADHD (inattentive). I am not taking any medication at this time but have had noticeable improvements when on venlafaxine anti-depressant and varenicline (smoking cessation medication), neither were prescribed for ADHD though. I was drawn to your post as I am a similar age to you.
Just a possible note regarding your description of the emotional telephone call. It is only very recently that I have begun to put the jigsaw piece in place regarding emotions and ADHD, and in part that has been seriously progressed by the additude website. There is a particular podcast of an interview with Dr Bill Hodson based in the U.S, and his description of mood and emotions just fit with me virtually in its entirety. Emotions and moods and ways of trying to deal with them are exhausting for people with ADHD; as mood and emotional symptoms are not listed as one of the 18 criteria that may indicate ADHD, it is very easy for professionals and those with the condition to dismiss the problems that some people can have simply as our personality traits. I appreciate that not everything comes down to ADHD. But I can see, especially as I’ve been trying to deal with the repercussions of the condition for a half century that I have needed to twist and turn to try and deal with the emotional side as well as everything else, and some of my emotions are not only coloured by the those twists and turns, but also are influenced by my frustration, anger and at times resentment.
This may not apply to you, but thought it might be of value.