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It happens to me all the time, I'm just walking my dog or something and like have an unimportant thought, and then I notice I'm having a full conversation with my self about pretty much nothing and I think I saw some post about it here a while back so I wanted to check if it's only me.

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So I’ve had this same doctor as my primary care for about 13-14 years. In that time she met my complaints of insomnia and anxiety with MEDS MEDS MEDS. She just threw em at me- seroquel for insomnia (straight to that- an antipsychotic), all manner of anti depressants even though I didn’t feel depressed, Ativan, etc. I stopped taking the seroquel after one dose. I hated everything, and nursed the Ativan bottle until it expired and half had to be tossed in the pill box at the pharmacy. I have refused painkillers multiple times. I don’t like taking medication. I hate the thought of being dependent on it.

Fast forward to last year when a therapist (my third) finally asked if I’d been tested for ADHD. My primary care took this seriously and sent me to someone she liked about 45 min away. That psychiatrist diagnosed me with “severe inattentive” which she called “debilitating”.

I won’t even get into my history but trust me when I say I’m textbook. Life has been hard.

She said I should take my meds every day. I protested this but she said “if you were diabetic would you feel bad taking insulin?” She was very pro take them daily so you can take your life back.

Primary started me at .10mg. I was blown away at how NOT drugged I felt. I just felt rested, clear, calm. It was amazing. It also wore off quickly and soon taking them didn’t seem to do much. I tell my doctor at my follow up, she blows me off. Didn’t even address it.

Next follow up (yesterday) I tell her again. She tells me in the most dismissive, eye-rolling way to not take them every day, that I “don’t need to, it’s not for everyday” and to only take them when I have to work.

I work for myself running two business. Every day of my life I work. I’ve been in six car accidents, forgotten to pick my kids up at school, stopped reading for pleasure because I couldn’t retain it, it took me ten years to get through college...

I wanted to cry in that office. Am I being unreasonable to expect to have my meds adjusted like everyone else I’ve talked to, who tried more and less until it was just right? Why cant I have a working brain for things like my family and hobbies too? :(

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The recent discussion about posts from people who've just started meds made me realize that it has been a year since I made my own "I just started meds!!" post.

One year on, meds are still a huge improvement in my life. Ritalin is just as effective for me now as it was the first time I felt it helping. If anything it's more effective, because I have learned how to work with it to optimize how it works in my life, and it has made me able to make some long-term changes like keeping a daily schedule.

Meds have not fixed everything in my life - my apartment is still a mess, I still procrastinate (although not as much), I still regularly lose my keys... But meds have helped me to improve so many things, to the point that I no longer feel like a hopeless fuck-up and I actually feel hope and confidence about the future (most of the time, anyway…). When I look back at where I was before I really can say meds really have been an amazing, life-changing difference.

Here is some of what I have learned from the experience:

Finding the right med
  • Don't assume what works best for other people will work best for you. From reading here, I had gotten the impression that Adderall was more effective than Ritalin, and either was more effective than Strattera. But once I started taking them, the opposite turned out to be true: Strattera was very effective (but gave me bad side effects), Ritalin also worked well (it's what I'm still on now), and I hated Adderall (made me feel not-myself, somehow angry and emotionless at the same time).
  • Allow yourself time to acclimate to the meds before judging how they work. The first time I took Ritalin it was horrible, like my brain was a car trying to drive with the parking brake stuck on. By the third or forth time I took it, my reaction to it changed, and it started to be more helpful.
  • What extended release format you have matters. Concerta and Ritalin LA have exactly the same active ingredient, they only differ in the release system. But the release system can make a huge difference in how fast the drug enters your system, and what dose you get throughout the day. For me Concerta was ineffective in the morning (too low) and made me feel really stressed out in the afternoon (too much), but Ritalin LA felt like a good even dose throughout the day.
  • Too high of a dose can be as bad as too low. On too high of a dose, I feel stressed out and overwhelmed - that stress reaction makes my focus and procrastination worse instead of better.
Things that affect how your meds work
  • If you've just stopped taking something else, be aware that that may be affecting you too. My psychiatrist told me to quit caffeine before starting meds, and dealing with caffeine withdrawal symptoms made my meds seem less effective at first. The same thing can apply when switching classes of meds - med B may not work so well for you while your brain is still adjusting to being off of med A.
  • If you have other mental health problems, they need to be treated too. My ADHD meds are much more effective when my antidepressants are working well. Sometimes it seems like my Wellbutrin and my Ritalin are working together to pick me up off the couch -- "OK, you take her feet, I'll get her shoulders..."
  • Not getting enough sleep will make your meds WAY less effective This is something I have to keep learning over and over again, but it always turns out to be true... if I'm running on 5 hours of sleep, that increases my executive function impairments to a point where my meds can't compensate
  • Other things like mood, hunger, and exercise can also affect your meds If I'm in a really bad mood, my meds aren't going to work very well. Hunger also reduces the effectiveness of my meds, and I don't always know that I'm hungry, so if they're not working I should try having a snack. And I've found that if I exercise intensely one day, my meds are more effective the following day.
  • If you are female, your hormones can affect your meds. I found meds did almost nothing during the luteal phase of my monthly cycle. Getting on birth control pills helped even that out for me and make them effective all month long (but YMMV, some people find birth control pills make their meds less effective instead of helping).
What to expect from meds
  • Meds can be subtle, you may not "feel" them. When I take Ritalin, I don't feel like I'm on something, I just feel like my normal self - but when I try to do something, it's easier to make myself do it and I'm less likely to get distracted or overwhelmed.
  • If you have other mental health problems, treating the ADHD may help with them. Having my ADHD properly medicated has definitely reduced my depression and anxiety.
  • Meds will not turn you into someone that you're not. If you don't like chess, then taking meds and sitting down at a chess board is not going to give you the motivation and focus to become a chess grandmaster.
  • Your achievements on meds are yours -- meds may have reduced the obstacles, but you are still the one who made it happen. If you got an A on your math exam, that's your A. Lots of other people could have taken the same meds and still not gotten an A. Your talent and your effort are what got you the A once the meds reduced some of the obstacles.
  • Sometimes meds don't help as much as you'd hoped. They improve my symptoms, but they don't make my symptoms totally go away. There are still things I struggle a lot with. It doesn't mean I don't care about these things - I want to do better on all of them and it upsets me that I don't - but I still have a brain disorder that makes me struggle with these things, and while it can be somewhat improved, it will never be "fixed".
  • Meds make you able to improve your life, but you still need behavioral strategies to help them work. Before meds, I had tried many systems for productivity and organization, but they always fell apart. It wasn't until I was medicated that I was able to start sticking to that kind of thing and making it work. And I do really really need my behavioral and organizational strategies for managing ADHD - if I use my strategies my meds are a tremendous help, if I don't then my meds just make me slightly more alert while I read Reddit, watch TV, and procrastinate.
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I recently got accepted to take my first part of the exams to become a sheriff. My question is was it hard for you to get accepted and did you face any hard challenges. Any advice that you think would help me or any challenges that you went through that I should maybe prepare myself for. I really wanted to go into the military but I couldn’t due to that fact that it’s impossible to get a waver for adhd. I’m also in a serious relationship so any advice on relationships would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

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Reddit » ADHD by /u/sleepyjean211 - 2d ago

I’ve been reading a lot of threads about people’s experiences when being diagnosed with ADHD as an adult. I have an appointment with a new psychiatrist in a couple weeks. I’m so sure that after nearly a decade of trying every antidepressant and mood stabilizer under the sun. I never got anything close to a positive result from any of the medications and was told I was resistant to the medications.

A counselor I’ve been seeing for nearly a year said on 2-3 occasions that I reminded her of a client that suffered from anxiety for 20 years and got much better after being diagnosed with ADHD.

The more I read and research. The more I think about all the years of bad grades, job failure and the overall feeling that I was dumb and lazy. Holy crap! Nearly everything I read sounds a lot like me. I’m absolutely certain I have ADHD.

The psychiatrist I’ve been seeing up till now dismissed the idea of ADHD because I wasn’t diagnosed as a child 🙄

Now to the point of my post is I’m reading about people having two hour appointments and having to bring old report cards and have family fill out surveys? I am counting the days (13) till my appointment. I assumed it would be much like any other appointment I’ve had. Doctor asks about symptoms, writes a prescription and says see you in a month. I have a one year old that will have to come with me. I just feel so sure of the diagnosis that spending anymore time not addressing the issue after missing it the last 35 years feels excruciating. I don’t want to run around asking people to fill surveys about me. Please tell me your experiences with getting diagnosed. I live in the USA if that makes a difference in what to expect.

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I suspect I was dismissed due to my cognitive cooties. I was told it was a financial cutbacks thing. But I know it was more personal than that. So now what. Just don’t understand what to do now. Should I confront the supervisor about whether I was actually fired due to my adhd/mental health symptoms?

I feel like I fucking suck at everything. And that no matter how hard I try, I’ll sabotage myself and fail anyway. Like on a big huge level I can’t avoid.

How do you get up from a back stab like that? How do you trust anything again? How do you live a life where your brain is your worst enemy and it gets you fired and makes you poorer than ever and more and more broken?

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Reddit » ADHD by /u/sideline_coach - 2d ago

Does any other adhd women out there have a problem finding the right purse???? This sounds stupid but if it doesn't have enough pockets I can't separate my stuff into "categories" and too many pockets has me searching through every pocket when I can't find things. I have tried the minimalistic approach with a small purse but find i can't fit everything i need. And a big purse is like having a mini-treasure hunt every other day of the week. Realizing this had been a major pain in the ass for all of my adult life.

Why does something as simple as a purse cause such distress? I travel a couple times a month and find myself dumping out half the purse (a small purse mind you) to find my rental car keys..in front of my co-worker. Has anyone found the perfect purse for ADHD???

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Reddit » ADHD by /u/tom7913 - 2d ago

Hi. I got diagnosed with ADHD for a few months ago. I've been on Ritalin for 6-7 weeks now. i've been takeing 30 mg in the morning arround 7 am and then anoter 10 mg around noon if I need to get more done in the afternoon and evening. Today i accidentally took more ritalin than I normaly do. I took 20 mg this morning arround 9 because i only had time to do some school work for a few hours. I planned on takeing another 20 mg after my appointment, but out of habbit I took another 30 mg. So where I normally take 30+10 mg with 5-6 hours between. I have now 20+30 with only 4 hours between. I'm a littel scared I will be experiencing some side effets. Is there anything I can do if this happen? Do i need to call a docter? Just ride it out? Go for a walk?

Have u ever 'messed up'? What happed?

Sorry for spelling errors. English isn't my first language.

-Tom

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Title says it all. My best friend always wants to call me on the phone and I can't do it anymore. Listening is already hard enough for me, but he talks a lot and puts a tremendous amount of detail in everything he says, so it's exhausting trying to follow AND I feel terrible for being a bad listener and sounding distracted/disinterested. Not to mention he usually wants to call me to vent about bad things that are going on in his life, so I feel even worse for not being as attentive as I should be.

I already told him not to send me voice notes anymore but I don't know how to reject calls, especially when he seems to need it. He's my best friend and knows about my ADHD (though I don't assume he fully understands it) so I don't want to make fake excuses, but I don't know how to be honest with him without sounding rude or seeming like a bad friend. Or should I just suck it up and start taking the calls?

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About a year ago, I almost lost my job.

I’m a senior manager at a digital marketing agency. I was told I wasn’t hitting the bar when it came to my job; completing things on time and holding my direct reports accountable. I was told I have knowledge and skills but I was being ineffective at applying them. My boss put me on notice.

That conversation caught me off guard and I put a TON of effort into to turning it around. My effort was recognized, but I was told I was struggling with achieving the desired results. Very frustrating.

Well, right around the same time, my son was struggling in school (kindergarten), and we had him tested and he was diagnosed as ADHD. Got him on some meds and it really helped him. Meanwhile, I was researching ADHD to understand how to better raise him. After reading the signs and symptoms of ADHD I knew I should get checked out. Sure enough, I’m a classic case. Side note: I think my mom is too, but I haven’t brought it up to her. She’s retired now and I think happy about the way things are so I haven’t mentioned it.

I was on Straterra for 9 months. It was effective at first, but has since lost the effectiveness so I recently switched to methylphenidate and it is working well so far. Now that I am off Straterra I realize I had no energy on it and it seems to have killed off my entrepreneurial drive which is a big part of my identity; I’ve always had various online side hustles as a hobby.

Back to work, the biggest thing that has happened to me at work is I have advocated for myself since my diagnosis. I convinced my boss I would be much more effective in a special projects/research/pitch hitter role. This means instead of managing routine day to day client programs (I do search engine and digital product catalog-based based marketing for retailers), I deal with messier projects like new client onboardings, help out on technical and research projects, train others, and cover vacations for other team members when they are out. The constant stream of new projects is rarely boring and usually so stimulating that I work fast and effectively.

Yesterday, my boss told me for the first time something to the effect of “you’re doing a really great job, people are noticing, and I think you’re thriving in this new role”.

It felt so great and I thought I wanted to share with this community. I finally feel like I’m hitting my groove at 37.

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