Hello! I'm Elisa, currently undiagnosed (and struggling)


I’m Elisa, 23. I’m currently not-so-succesfully studying physics at my local university.
I’m only currently diagnosed with depression, a sleep disorder and I also have fibromyalgia (I’m so lucky that I have both physical and mental issues).

I’m here because my therapist thinks I have ADHD and/or learning disabilities that went undiagnosed because (most likely, I don’t know for sure) I could cope with it until my health got worse. Or it’s because university, now from a 20 page test now I need to prepare a 200 pages textbook in three to four months and I can’t really plan.

I have severe executive dysfunction. I procrastinate for weeks, when I start doing some work I always think “I should do this, that…” and get distracted. And do the other stuff, because apparently putting away laundry is better than studying.
When I try to solve some problems, despite my understanding of the material I have to redo the exercise three times because there is often a detail that I miss the first time and I get everything wrong. Or I always feel like I’m missing something.
I have the habit to walk around the house with no purpose just because I can’t sit down, even if I’m in pain and I waited for my couch all day long. It’s so weird and people tell me that I give them anxiety when I do that. I just feel the urge to do that even if i’m at other’s people home or in a library (which is an issue).
I daydream all the time, and I never actually talked about this to anyone, it makes me feel like I’m crazy because well… I spend HOURS each day daydreaming. I like writing and often this daydream is related to what I’m currently writing. Which is… terrible. I have serious trouble because I can’t stop and do something else.

I’m on the verge of dropping out university as I did with high school (i got my diploma anyway, but it’s a scar that will never heal), because my grades sucks. Physics is one of the subject I really cared about in my life other than math. But I feel stupid because I can’t get good grades (or acceptable grades), even if I get what I’m doing, but I can’t focus enough to master the ability. I could really do wonder if, somewhat, somehow could use my “daydream ability” to solve math or physics problems. I just can’t, because I always struggled in school and I’m too anxious and I can’t focus enough to do well.

When I was 7 I was sent to see someone, but they stopped testing after the IQ test (I have an higher than average IQ, not a genious though). And doing all these tests… my anxiety is skyrocketing.

Even if I stop going to university there is no way I can handle a job like this. I’ll end up getting fired in days, because even if I start with all the good intentions in the world I rarely get something done.

I never accomplished anything in my life. The only thing I didn’t messed up is the relationship with my boyfriend, but it took me a lot of effort. (And him too).

I hope to find some coping strategies here(and amazing people too!). I also hope that getting a diagnosis(and an appropriate therapy) will improve my grades and my life, because hell, I can’t keep going like this.


For me research helped so much. Finding the right treatment through medication and therapy sounds awesome. Ya I’ll get right on that. I figured out I had it over a year ago but suck at making appointments, then actually going when it comes to it and then making the next one lol I’ve probably thought about making appointments 100times, made 12 appointments but Ive only actually gotten myself to see counselor 3times.I got hyper focused on learning about it for a while in the beginning and that’s been my fall back savior to get me back on track for a regular treatment plan. You know yourself the best. The more you understand and figure out, the better you can go after things you learn you need in your life to be successful. Every day battle but we will get there😊


Hi Elisa, I very much relate to your story and descriptions of symptoms. I am currently undergoing testing towards an adhd diagnosis, which is exciting…and daunting. While successful in my career (I’m older than you), I failed terribly in school. Let me know if you feel like dialoging further. Don’t dispair, your situation and experiences are more common than you might imagine…and resources (and other’s experiences) can help provide hopeful next steps. Best…


I need to use like two planners and Google Calendar to remember me to show to the appointments. Or I will forget. Sometimes I forget even if it’s on my planner because I forget to check the planner. Or I cancel the notification and the appointment slips out of my mind. And there is an high chance that I’ll be late because losing the bus is one of my hobbies. No wonder why I’m so overwhelmed. I really hope things will get better, but every time I say so, stuff only get worse. ugh. I hope this time is a good time.

@Bonsaiguy School has always been a nightmare for me, i was a bad student, I couldn’t bother doing homework. And for some reason I decided that enrolling in the most difficult course my university offers was a good idea. I’m the master of bad decisions. I hope university and doctors will be able to help me once I get a diagnosis and get better. Because I’m not really sure I can work like this. Out of curiosity, what do you do?


Hi, I sooo relate. My college prep test scores were among the highest in my school…and I shortly thereafter failed out of my high school…sigh. Turns out, school was a really difficult environment for me to succeed in. Since then, I’ve had tons of really cool opportunities as an adult and (in many ways), I’ve done great in them. I’ve taught management and crises intervention skills in the US and the UK and I currently oversee communications for a hospital. Recent events have pushed the envelope of my capacity and I’m now pursuing a formal diagnosis…stay tuned… That appointment is next week. A key to my success had been that I’ve been really fortunate to have hired very capable assistants along the way in my work roles that have kept me from failing at the basics… They know my weaknesses and are great at keeping me on track. Kinda like a “professional mom”…haha.
Anyway, I’m enjoying the dialogue. Sounds like you’ve taken on some really challenging goals. Tough question: can you accomplish what you’ve committed to? If you really want to succeed in those things, what support wold be necessary to help ensure your success?


Your job sounds very fun and interesting!

At the moment I never accomplished anything, really. When I got back to get my diploma I realized that I actually never learnt how to study, but the material was easy and I got the equivalent of a C+ on my finals. It’s not even close to what I do now.

I need (and they are accommodations I could already have, but I’m not really accepting anything) is deadline extension and more time to turn in my exams. I need actually therapy support for my executive dysfunctions, more than anything else. I need someone to explain me how my brain works, because planning for months ahead is something I’m not able to do, especially with my health issues and I need to carefully plan if I want to pass my classes. I tend to underestimate a lot how much it takes me to do tasks generally. I also tend to have longer than intended study breaks: instead of resting for 5 minutes my regular study break is like an hour.
I also struggle a lot socially, but I don’t really mind, my priority at the moment is to get on track with studying. Getting along with classmates can wait lol.


Unsure…is there a way to pm here…?


I so look forward to connecting further.


…May be able to offer some helpful input.


Hi Elisa, welcome to the tribe. We all know so much about what you are going through, and you are far from alone now. We’ve been there too, and are right with you now.

That’s just not true, and you know it already. Just getting out of bed in the morning can be 10 times harder for us than for others, let alone working as hard as you do, just to be two steps behind everyone else.

Just getting to where you are is an incredible achievement of hard work and perseverance, even if nobody else can see that.

If you judge yourself based on other people’s criteria, then you will fail. Because they are judging you based on what they expect you to do, in the ways that they find acceptable to them.

I sometimes refer to “normal” people as linear thinkers.

You already know that this is not you.

But how many times in your life have you come up with a solution that nobody else has? And how many times have you been treated like an idiot because they simply cannot see what you are seeing?

The people treating you like an idiot, can often only see what is straight in front of them, in a straight line with no deviation from the traditional.

You will be constantly thinking in circles around them, and will see as obvious many of the things that would completely baffle them.

But if they expect you to be able to slow yourself down enough to see the boring, obvious things… No chance. That would be like trying to get them to speed up their thinking to match yours.

University is tough. I dropped out myself. And I wish I hadn’t, but I didn’t really have a choice. Stay in if you can, but not at the expense of your health and sanity.

It’s all perspective. Depression will tell you that nothing you do is right, and you will stall. The harder you fight, the harder depression will get its hooks into you, because you simply cannot work efficiently in this state. And even the simple things can fail.

But when you’re in a good state of mind, whatever you do seems like a small victory, or even goes completely unnoticed, accepted as normal.

Depression reverses that completely.

Sometimes it’s not worth fighting the depression. I find that sometimes I just need to pull away from everything, curl into a ball, and just wait until it gets better which it almost always does eventually.

Hang in there.

By the way… Purrr-pendicular. Ha ha ha ha. Nice! :smile: