My Forum Comments
It’s not about other people and what they do or don’t do. It’s about knowing yourself and knowing your limits. Mental health and physical health are just as important. If you didn’t feel safe to drive or go in then trust yourself that you made a good call. I don’t think it’s unethical. It doesn’t sound like you were trying to get away with anything or manipulate anything. You did what you could for you based on the information you had and how you were feeling. Be kind to yourself.
April 3, 2020 at 7:49 am in reply to: New to the forum & desperately crying out for help #167755
I don’t have a lot of specific advice. I would start by trying to outline your concerns in writing, and then to find time to share those concerns with your family. You could do that as a whole, or individually with your wife and then separately with the kids. A lot of times people are unaware of what they do that affects us. If you do share things with them, also make sure to share solutions. “I feel overwhelmed when I have to remind you to do things like the dishes all the time. Maybe there’s a way that we can work together to help you remind yourself, like setting up a reminder on your phone or even giving you a reward when it gets done.”
The other thing I’d suggest is the book “Parenting Teens with Love and Logic.” It’s a great resource on parenting and easy to understand. It’s not a judgmental book that tells you how to be a good parent, but rather how to avoid power struggles and how to have some relief as a parent.
I did well with Wellbutrin (bupropion) but switched off it due to a side effect. It was good overall though.
I’d be hesitant at the statement “it’s all ADHD related.” Behaviors, especially abusive ones, aren’t a result of ADHD. A person may be more vulnerable to certain things, more impulsive, and even struggle with social interactions, but ADHD is not a cause of abuse. That has to do with a person’s choices, character, and overall mental health. It’s important not to let him or the psychiatrist place the responsibility for those things onto the diagnosis. It’s important that you know he can be held accountable for his behavior. He doesn’t get a free pass just because he has ADHD.
Ultimately in moving forward in a relationship that is broken, it’s less about “forgive and forget” and more about, “Do I want a life with this person?” If you don’t, be honest about that. If you do, then you find ways to work on the future rather than trying to hash out parts of the past. You can give each other a fresh start to some extent, but you still take time to provide information to your partner on what hasn’t worked well in the past and what could be different. You do it without blame and from a perspective of change. But, you only do that if you want to maintain the relationship.
Living with and loving someone with a mental illness can be hard. It can be exhausting. It can be heartbreaking. Sometimes we can’t tolerate it or live through it. There’s a lot of weight placed on wedding vows (“through sickness and in health”) but sometimes love or promises can’t stand up to reality. And, if someone is abusive, you shouldn’t continue to be in a relationship that places you in harm’s way or makes you feel unsafe.
Bottom line, he’s still responsible for his own choices and behavior. And you have to decide if you still want to move forward. Reflect on it honestly and consider what life would be like with him if he gets better and if he doesn’t. There’s a chance he may get better and relapse, or a chance that he won’t get better for years. You need to know what your limits are and set that bottom line. Good luck whatever you do!
I was diagnosed as an adult. I had never really considered it in the past, having instead gotten treatment for a mood disorder for most of my adult life. I was skeptical at first when it was suggested as a possibility, but I worked with my provider for about a year and a half before he finally decided to diagnose me with ADHD and start me on medication. Immediately I began to do a ton of research to find out more to see if it was actually accurate.
I think as adults we often miss things that we did or didn’t do as a child. I always thought I couldn’t have ADHD because I was well-behaved and did relatively well in school. I wasn’t usually climbing around on things or talking out of turn. That being said, when I got more information from people in my life as well as reflecting on some of the possible symptoms, I started to notice more things that connected. I’d say as a child I was probably more the inattentive type than hyperactive. That being said, I can look back now on my adult life and see how ADHD helps explain a lot of my struggles as well as a lot of my successes.
For example, I struggled a lot in college at times but then did really well at others. I think there was a lot of impulsivity, but also a lot of boredom and lack of routine. I do really well when I have a structure and a routine, and I have developed strategies over the years to help me stay organized, keep track of objects and bills, and also make sure I keep appointments. I still struggle a lot, even on medication, but I’ve found that the diagnosis has been helpful in giving me more information as well as connecting me to more tools and understanding than I had before.
If you’re interested in the diagnosis, you can read a lot and find out a lot by reading books, checking out podcasts, and even by watching the HowToADHD Youtube channel. In the end the diagnosis itself may not be important unless it helps change your treatment plan (i.e. a new medication). In general, most providers “can” diagnose ADHD but most are reluctant to do so. If you don’t want to wait two years, you can always talk to your current providers about seeking evaluation sooner through them or start looking for outside evaluation. Bottom line, keep looking into things for yourself. Find out if ADHD makes sense. If it does, find out ways that you can educate yourself and find ways to manage the symptoms more effectively.
I was skeptical at first, but now I’m a believer. It’s been beneficial for me to know. I can’t go back and change anything, including my past mistakes and challenges, but I do have more knowledge about how to move forward and make positive changes.
I think what you’re experiencing is pretty common. It’s not unusual to begin to question your career, your job, and your life after a certain amount of time. Especially in your 30s and 40s when you start to feel like everyone else has their dream or is moving up and you’re stuck in the same place.
It’s important to answer some questions for yourself about what’s going on right now.
– Do you like your job? If so, what do you like about it? If not, what don’t you like about it?
– Do you feel acknowledged, valued, or rewarded at work? Do you feel challenged?
– What makes you happy?
– Where do you put your effort? They say that you shouldn’t follow your passion, instead follow your effort. What do you put time into doing at work that doesn’t bother you, or that you do well?
– Do you want to move up? Or would you rather stay in a role with less responsibility?
– Have you taken advantage of opportunities for professional growth? If not, would you be interested in seeking those out? For example, asking a boss to take on a new project or to sit in on higher level meetings. Maybe taking a leadership class or finding ways to volunteer in other projects.
– Do you have the time or energy to commit to your job and company? A lot of times we don’t “get ahead” because we’re not driven to and we don’t want to give our job any more of our time and effort than we already do.
– Finally, are you happy? Are you taking care of your mental health? What is home like? Do you feel recharged? Are you battling depression? Are you getting professional help?
Mid-life and quarter-life crises are common. They’re opportunities for us to look internally and see what really matters, and decide for ourselves what we’re willing or not willing to do to be happy. I hope you find your answers, and also that you find your happiness and a career that you can enjoy.
It sounds like you’ve already been doing a lot to try to advocate for yourself. She may just be too set in her own opinions to hear your voice. A lot of doctors view themselves as the experts and don’t trust us to know our own needs.
Some questions that you may ask her if you haven’t already:
– What would be a sign to you that I wasn’t doing well?
– You say that you think the medication is helping. What do you think it is helping with? From your perspective, what have you noticed that’s better? What have you noticed that’s worse?
– I’m having a real hard time with the pain and muscle issues that I’m facing. If you don’t think a medication change is warranted, what would you suggest as alternatives?
– Hypothetically, if we were to change medications, what would my options be? Do you think any of them would be worth trying? We could always go back to the current medications if they don’t help.
– I feel frustrated. I feel like I’ve been trying to express concerns to you but I don’t feel like those are being validated or truly heard. It would be helpful to me if you would reflect back to me what my concerns are as you understand them, and also if you would be willing to work on alternative ideas to help me.
– I understand the things you’re saying about being kind to myself and trying to do the other things you suggest. I am doing those, but I’m still having these issues. What else can we do together to address this? The things I’m doing on my own aren’t enough. And I don’t know that the medication is where it needs to be to make things easier.
I’m guessing you’ve tried variants of most of that. In the end, you may not be able to change the doctor’s mind. You may have to look for an alternative provider. But at least you can be direct about your feelings, your wants, your needs, and your expectations.
I can say that for me when I was interviewing for jobs what I would do is write out potential questions in advance, and then also write out my answers to those questions. Then I’d read through those, practice them aloud, and try to recite them from memory. It helped me get rid of some of the interview jitters since I was prepared to answer the common questions.
I would also suggest owning your anxiety. It’s not bad to go into an interview and let them know you’re nervous. It can actually help break the tension.
Depending on what job you’re applying for, a lot of time they are looking for fit more than skills. If they’ve given you an interview they already think you’re qualified, so they want to get a sense of who you are as a person. Be genuine. Be yourself. Be engaged.
Lastly, there’s no “right path” for most of us. Usually we stumble upon our happiness over time. Some people get lucky and find it right out of the gate. What’s important is to find something that you can continue to do over time, rather than something that you do and it feels like an obligation.
Dr. Ned Hallowell suggests that people with ADHD look for the following in a job:
– Something that you’re good at
– Something that you like to do
– Something that someone will pay you to do
If you can get all three, great. If not, at least try for two. Definitely don’t settle for one.
I wish I had better advice. There are usually lots of employment resources out there either at schools or local employment agencies. A lot of those places will also offer interview prep. You can also rely on friends or family to help you practice for interviews or give you ideas of what to expect.
Bottom line, work and career choices aren’t easy and they aren’t always right for us. It takes time for us to learn what’s important to us, and then more time to find a job that meets those needs.
A lot of pediatricians and psychologists put a lot weight on school evaluations. It’s tough because a lot of ADHD people do well in school with minimal hyperactivity, good grades, etc. They often miss inattentive type and also don’t account for the fact that some kids have a lot of self control when it comes to responding to authority or other rules.
I’d say that if you’re getting a lot of push back it may be worth seeking another opinion, though I know it would be hard to find since it seems like you’ve already have a rough time finding anyone to handle this. You could also ask the provider more about what more information they need in order to see the things you do. Have they given you parent rating forms? Have they done any of the various ADHD screening evaluations? There are lots of tools for providers out there but they don’t always use them. Either they’re not trained in them or the tools are expensive.
Keep doing what you’re doing. Write down a list of behaviors that you see at home. You can even look at the diagnostic criteria for ADHD and make notes and give examples for all the ones you see. You can find the criteria from the DSM-V here: Neurodevelopmental Disorders
Whatever happens, it may still take a while to get a diagnosis. There’s always a chance it isn’t ADHD, but as a parent if you know something is wrong it’s important to keep fighting and advocating. Good luck!
February 20, 2020 at 7:46 am in reply to: Idk if this is related to ADHD… feeling ashamed and confused #142443
Are you seeing a therapist right now? I think that might be a good first step.
It seems like you’ve learned that external accountability can be helpful, so maybe finding ways to have more of that in your life. Like setting reminders on your phone before you start playing games, or having someone check on you by stopping by or with a phone call.
As for the debit card, I’d actually suggest starting with something simple and just start using cash. See if that helps break the cycle a bit. Otherwise, working with a therapist to breakdown what is it about the sequencing of putting the card back in the wallet is hard. It may be a psychological barrier more than a physiological one. Sometimes we keep doing things we don’t want to do because we on a deeper level want to keep doing badly. Not saying that’s the case here, but something that can be a possibility.
In any case, I’d suggest talking to someone. A therapist of some kind can be immensely helpful.
There are other ways to manage ADHD for sure. Medication is one of the first line and most effective treatments but there are a number of other options, skills, and tools.
It would be important to first identify what some of the most common symptoms and challenges are for you. For example, if it’s restlessness and hyperactivity, exercise may be a good option. If it’s organization, getting an ADHD coach could be useful. If it’s struggling with motivation or work, there are some great tools on the HowToADHD Youtube. If it’s about relationships, there are some good books out there as well as resources from here in the support forums.
Bottom line, yes you can help treat ADHD without medication. It may not be as effective, but it can help manage some of the concerns and offer extra skills and support in your daily life that may also improve your other conditions.
February 12, 2020 at 11:24 am in reply to: My doctor took me off Adderall because I don't have a "real job"? #141813
Personally I’d advise changing doctors. It sounds like they have a very biased view of ADHD based on stigma and prejudice, and I wouldn’t think they’d be providers you’d want to continue working with. I know it can be a pain to look for a new provider, but that’s probably the easiest option. Especially if they’re neither willing to listen to your input or offer a good explanation based on evidence to justify their decision.
ADHD effects all areas of life, like you know, and you don’t just provide medication so people can work. It’s funny because they said, “We don’t provide medication so you can clean your house” but does that mean they DO provide it so people can work? That seems ridiculous. ADHD medication is not a performance enhancer. It’s a medicine needed for a medical condition. It’s appropriate, evidence-based treatment for the disorder and it’s backed by national and international guidelines.
I’d suggest switching providers, but it’s definitely up to your preference. I know providers who work with ADHD and who are willing to prescribe medication are pretty limited. That being said, if you express to them that the reason your doctor didn’t keep prescribing it was because you don’t have a job outside the home, they might be more willing. You may even want to go to the length of asking your current doctor to put that justification in writing so that when you do seek a new provider you can get the records to prove why they made that choice.
^^ Good post from ryoto.
February 26, 2020 at 8:54 am in reply to: Psychiatrist wants 3 drug tests before prescribing adderall #143477
I would add to what Penny said and say that you may want to try to share your financial concerns with the doctor again to let them know how difficult it is for you. They may not agree to any changes, but at least they have some understanding of your situation. As well, if they do prescribe you medication in the future, maybe they will require more infrequent drug testing if they are aware of the financial burden.
Like Penny said, though, if you look for a new provider you may find the same situation. If this provider is willing to prescribe the medication after the clean drug tests, it may be worth sticking with them at this point. Perhaps you can apply for a reduced fee service at the office as well.