My Forum Comments
Think about it – if you had some fetish or gross/weird habit and your parents found evidence of it and confronted you about it, would you admit your fetish/habit to them, or would you fiercely deny it? Of course he’s embarrassed and will fiercely deny everything, even in the face of irrefutable evidence.
I wouldn’t call panty theft “very illegal” (petty theft is a misdemeanor) or “predatory” – he’s not preying upon another person for sexual reasons (which is what sexual predation entails), just stealing panties (which is still definitely creepy and inappropriate and petty theft).
Look for a behavioral therapist with experience/specialization in sexual issues (check out the therapist search on the Psychology Today website) so he can have an understanding outlet for figuring himself out in this regard and deal with his behavioral issues stemming from it. It’s very possible he won’t cooperate (out of embarrassment/denial), but it’s worth a shot. And definitely stress that the issue is not what he’s doing privately in his bedroom that bothers you, it’s the thievery, and that if he wants you to leave him alone with his private activities forever, then he needs to leave your stuff alone forever (and get his own).
Sounds like he has some sort of panty fetish. For the most part, fetishes aren’t anything to worry about, but he needs to learn how to conduct himself so he’s not stealing panties or being creepy or unsafe about it. If his behavior is problematic (I’d say the stealing is sufficiently problematic), consider having him see a therapist who specializes in these issues.
For the record, this has absolutely nothing to do with the ADHD.
A few things to consider:
– You know methamphetamine can be legally and legitimately prescribed for ADHD, right? Trade name is Desoxyn. Also, keep in mind that therapudic doses of meth and other amphetamines are a tiny fraction of what meth/speed heads use to get messed up.
– Descriptions of what we now call ADHD first showed up in medical literature in the late 18th century. And then through the 19th and early 20th century, you see the “moral control” terminology a bunch because they weren’t sure what the deal was with these kids who were of normal intelligence but had all these problems coping, so it was perceived as a deficit of “moral” control (everything was about morals back then). The idea of “moral control” is very antiquated – we now know that ADHD is an issue with executive functioning caused by dopamine imbalance, and not an issue with moral fortitude/needing to learn right from wrong.
– Amphetamines are not the cause of ADHD. ADHD is strongly hereditary. It’s basically an alternate brain wiring that causes the dopamine circuitry in your brain to not work right and not give your brain enough dopamine, causing the ADHD symptoms/behaviors. The reason stimulants like methylphenidate and amphetamines work so well for ADHD is that they restore those dopamine levels to what they would be in a normal person.
– Of course you take the stimulants to feel normal and get stuff done for a while – that’s the point! As I explained above, they literally make you normal for a time because they fix your brain’s busted reward circuitry (which was definitely not busted by amphetamines). And they wear off quickly because stimulants have a short half-life.
– So this “cycle” of which you speak… do you mean to say that I have ADHD because my parents must have done speed? That’s a bit presumptuous and insulting. Also, a hereditary brain defect is not something you can bootstrap your way out of by just naturally retraining your mind or whatnot. That’s like trying to fix your nearsightedness by learning how to squint better instead of just getting some glasses.
Recipe prep times are a crock of lies. Why yes, I can totally dice two onions, peel and mince several cloves of garlic, peel and slice three carrots, julienne leeks, toast cumin seeds, and probably also do other things all in the fifteen minutes the recipe says I need. Not!!
If I follow a recipe, I completely ignore prep times because they’re almost always wildly inaccurate, especially when you keep getting distracted or whatever.
My solution was to just transcend recipes. I figured out how to make dishes and do techniques so I don’t have to follow recipes anymore. Foods that are timing/ingredient insensitive are the best – soups, stews, braised things, etc. I don’t need recipes OR timers for these things because I just know what to add and when it’ll be done (I hate having to follow timed sequences more complex than “cook the one thing for X minutes”).
But if you DO need to follow a recipe, it helps to have it in print. Following internet recipes from your phone is the worst.
Please let her try the meds. I went undiagnosed until after college (was a bright well-behaved girl too, so no one suspected ADD). I had a really rough go at both high school and college. It was stressful and overwhelming, and I couldn’t quite figure out why everything was so much more difficult for me and why I couldn’t “just apply myself”. My parents were always disappointed at me and ugh… I felt like a fraud – everyone around me thought I was smart, but that it was all a facade over my secret stupidity and innate incurable laziness. If I had known Ritalin could have helped me back then, I would have begged for it too.
Supplements and meditation only help so much – they don’t correct the ADHD brain’s defective dopamine circuitry like the meds do.
The meds changed my life, even though they came too late to help me in school. Without them I would probably still be wallowing around at some crap job, squandering everything I learned in school, and paying the bills late.
Methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta) is an old proven drug, on the market decades longer than modern antidepressants. It’s been studied exhaustively, and it’s very safe and effective. Furthermore, it’s different from antidepressants in that it doesn’t stick around in your system – it’s gone by the end of the day. I started taking an antidepressant recently for SAD and I was warier about it than I was about the methylphenidate, to be honest. And even these stimulant meds did “change” me, I’d welcome it with open arms because they change me into a motivated, functional person. I hated being addled and dysfunctional, and I bet your daughter hates it too. It seriously sucks.
HMMM… so how do you explain ADHD in people who do NOT have high blood sugar??
Cognitive problems caused by diabetes/metabolic syndrome/high blood sugar/etc. may superficially mimic ADHD, but they are not the same thing as ADHD.
ADHD is caused by a defect in the brain’s dopamine transport system. They have brain scans and everything.
I suppose you could tell her how to be safe and responsible while out with her friends and also not to lie about what she’s doing and where she’s going if she wants to keep going out, and that if she ever finds herself in a bad situation, no matter the circumstances or time of night, she can call you and you will come get her (my mom had this arrangement with me and my sisters and it was very wonderful of her to give us this fallback).
Since she’s presumably bound for college pretty soon, drill into her head all the usual safety rules, like no drinking and driving, don’t accept mixed drinks or pre-opened beers, etc. Also no cocaine. According to an ADHD friend who has tried cocaine, it is like Adderall on crack (heh), and generally, ADHD people should NOT do cocaine.
All in all, this seems more like a regular old teenager problem rather than an ADHD-specific problem. I mean, I was the goody two shoes in my family, and my non-ADHD sisters were the ones who stole from the liquor cabinet and went to the crazy parties.
So, opioids (I’m assuming it was opioids/opiates from the methadone) do pretty much the opposite of what stimulants do recreationally. Back when I was trying to find the right dose of methylphenidate, I went too high and it was completely horrible – I was strung out and couldn’t sleep. I can’t imagine why anyone would want to abuse stimulants. In fact, there was a recent study of illicit Adderall use and the vast majority of people used it not to get high but to study/perform better in school.
Additionally, there are the long acting forms like Vyvanse that are less abusable than the IR pills.
I’m in SW PA, so plenty of opioid abuse here, to the point where medical residents pretty much have classes on recognizing and turning away drug seekers. Drug seekers were almost exclusively after painkillers. I’ve witnessed drug seeking at my pharmacy too – guy in front of me trying to get Vicodin or Oxy with a bogus prescription. With ADHD meds they only look at you sideways if you’re a college student, because illicit use (I wouldn’t even call it abuse because they’re all still using proper therapeutic doses and taking it for its intended use) is rampant.
Find a doc you trust who understands adult ADHD and be honest, and be willing to try out more non-stimulant options like Intuniv. It would be nice if they found some more effective nonstimulant treatments. It’s unfortunate that Strattera doesn’t often work, because when you’re lucky and it works for you, it’s apparently super good. But more often, it’ll just give you a bunch of crappy side effects.
Hey man, that really sucks. I feel you – I’ve been there several times (multiple stints of academic probation, performance improvement plan at work, singled out for layoff at a previous job).
What you can do in the short term is take those meds, eat protein for breakfast, and try to exercise in the morning before work. Doing those things will hopefully give you a mental boost.
In the long term, look into cognitive behavioral therapy. The pills help you focus, but they cannot undo a lifetime of maladaptive behaviors, anxieties, or self esteem problems. Being on the meds help CBT work (I was put through plenty of therapy in high school, but was too addlebrained for any of it to stick). I was always described as anxious when I was younger, but I don’t have anxiety disorder, I was just constantly anxious because of my mysterious inability to follow through and perform. It gets to you after a while.
PS: started answering a slew of your earlier questions on my laptop (phone posting is annoying), but didn’t finish. I’ll try to get that response up soon.
Lamotrigine seems like a really weird choice for ADHD…. I’ve been reading some psych meds discussions elsewhere and Lamotrigine comes up a lot, but never for ADHD. The Wikipedia article section on its off-label uses does not mention ADHD.
It’s an anticonvulsant that is mainly used to treat epilepsy, other seizure issues, and bipolar.
Have you tried Wellbutrin? It’s an atypical antidepressant (NDRI) that’s often used off-label for ADHD. I recently started taking it when my seasonal affective disorder got out of control, and I’ve found it quite helpful for ADHD symptoms as well. Unlike Strattera (which is an NRI), Wellbutrin also works on dopamine, so it can have similar effects to stimulants, but works very differently. Worth a try, at least.
Ahhh I have a theory…
Try taking ONE of the brand-name pills instead of two and see how you feel.
Why? Because the generic you had before was one of the garbage ones (the “alza” pills are the only ones with the proper release mechanism). And because it was a bad one, you probably weren’t getting enough methylphenidate, hence taking the max 72mg. Now that you have the real deal, you are actually getting the full amount of drug releasing when it’s supposed to, which could be why you feel terrible.
When I was trying to find the right dose of Concerta, I tried 54mg and it was AWFUL – I was agitated, anxious, had insomnia, didn’t feel like I was focusing all that well (because I was feeling terrible and not sleeping). Went back to 36mg, where I remain. And then one month, the pharmacy didn’t have the good alza pills, so I got some random generic and it was like I was taking sugar pills.
So yeah, can’t hurt to try just the one pill.
What did your generic pills look like? Did they say “alza” on them?
Hey there, inattentive-type girl here. I had plenty of issues in high school and was long suspected of having autism (and depression/anxiety), and even thought so myself. It never really fit – I was introverted, so I just didn’t like socializing and therefore didn’t care enough to learn how to do it well, so it wasn’t an issue of fundamentally not understanding. So different causes, but superficially similar presentations.
As for issues with school, I’m not sure what INSTEP is – Google tells me it’s a special ed program, a tech enrichement program, a dance studio, etc. Is it some sort of alternative course of study? Anyhow, one issue I had at my private high school was that because no one could identify the ADHD, I was pegged as possibly autistic/having a learning disability/not actually being smart enough for this school, so I got thrown into mandatory study hall with all the dumb legacy brats. I SEETHED. I knew I was smarter than them. I resented being there and it made me want to blow everything off out of spite. Could that be why your daughter is flagrantly boycotting work in that one class?
Most of my problems were inattention and having severely underdeveloped study skills. I had a breakthrough with my chemistry teacher. I flunked a test and he had me come to office hours – he was worried that I wasn’t grasping the material, but the real problem was that I couldn’t study to save my life. We did some more one-on-one stuff and he gave me some extra time on the tests and I started getting A’s.
I know your daughter has turned down tutors, but one-on-one tutoring is really, really helpful for ADHD kids because there’s nowhere for you to drift off to and you’re being constantly directly engaged by the tutor. If the school is trying to throw a tutor at her, by god, take advantage! It will be even more helpful once she gets meds, which will help with absorbing and retaining some better study and coping skills. You’ll probably have to coax her into this, but as someone who’s been there, it’s really helpful, even if it was an affront to my pride at the time.
Also, does the school have a gym or offer individual sports? Some non-team thing like track, swimming, or fencing would be a good outlet. Exercise really helps ADHD people focus.
So my question is: even though you were an A student, were you a good student?
I see a lot of parallels in your story to what I experienced in school and trying to launch as an adult.
I was a terrible, terrible student. I got mostly A’s up until high school, which, along with being a well-behaved girl, masked the ADHD. Feats included acing a test I hadn’t studied for and getting called out by my teacher as a glowing example of a student who studies, and doing an entire month-long book report project the night before it was due and receiving an A. So yeah, I never learned how to be a good student. I was just smart. I managed to get into a very prestigious university and BARELY graduated, and had my diploma held hostage because I’d forgotten to pay the shop bill. Then I struggled to get myself a decent job and learn more skills. I basically sucked at everything having to do with living life.
Finally got diagnosed a few years ago in my mid-20s, and the meds made a mind blowing difference in my ability to function.
So yeah, it seems like you do have ADHD. Good news is that it’s very treatable and that your issues with keeping your life together are due to different brain wiring and not a moral failing.
Some tips on meds: 20mg/day methylphenidate is a pretty low dose. You’ll probably want to titrate up until you feel the effects. I had to go up a few times to hit a therapeutic dose.
Also, lay off the espresso. Caffeine is a weak garbage-quality stimulant, and stimulants tend to not play nice with other stimulants. Methylphenidate is a much more powerful, high quality stimulant, so you don’t want to let caffeine get in the way. If you need to come off the caffeine more easily, I recommend Yerba mate tea – it’s the only form of caffeine that doesn’t mess me up when I’m on my meds. Anecdotal, but still.March 10, 2019 at 2:18 pm in reply to: First day 10mg Adderall, 10yo girl, WIRED- normal? #110708
Well the first day I took methylphenidate I was wired and decided that I must CLEAN ALL THE THINGS. The euphoric/wired feeling that stimulants give subsides as your body gets used to them.
Also, seems odd that the XR took so long to work. Had a similar problem with a certain type of generic extended release methylphenidate (didn’t release at all). If the XR lasts too long/causes insomnia, ask the doc about the IR.