I’ll try and make this as short as possible but this is my explanation on who I am, my (recent) diagnosis and a little bit about my current issues with ADHD.
I’m female and 32 years old. I wasn’t officially diagnosed until September and even then, looking back on it, I feel the diagnosis was given rather reluctantly. ADHD isn’t the only thing I have; I also have Complex PTSD. And that seems to be the only thing any doctor or therapist wants to talk about with me.
I didn’t start to suspect that I might have ADHD till December 2019. It started with the usual ‘found something relatable’, in my case, a funny meme. Then finally after reading a few of these I went from ‘lol that’s so relatable’ to ‘wait a minute…’.
However, due to Covid and moving to a new state, I didn’t get an opportunity to speak to anyone about it till the start of fall. I had thus far found the subreddit for ADHD but I hadn’t heard about this place nor the Youtube channel yet.
My whole life I grew up with the assumption that I was just broken. I’m a born screw up. A burden. I was diagnosed with depression and treated for depression since my early teens. I have always sucked in school. I joke that I have the brain of a gold fish. I joke that intellect is my dump stat (That’s a table top reference, specifically Dungeons and Dragons). And while I won’t go into details, because I was the weird and awkward kid growing up, I was also abused. By both my peers, adults and by my own mother.
This is where the PTSD comes in. And I understand that PTSD/Complex PTSD and ADHD have very similar symptoms, but I remember (shockingly) very clearly what I was like before my trauma started. I would not sit still. I was loud and obnoxious. I would not shut up and blurted out answers before I could stop myself. I had no impulse control. I was forgetful (still am), I could not focus for the life of me (still can’t!). I was doodling all the time in class or just dazing out, daydreaming.
But I was also a kid and a girl.
As I said previously, I will not go into what happened to me. But I very quickly learned that if I didn’t want to be in pain that I should keep quiet and keep my head down. And even then it was never good enough. I could never do anything right. I was always in trouble.
Because I expressed these traits before my trauma, the doctor I spoke with agreed that I have ADHD. However, they also felt that my Complex PTSD ruled me out for stimulants. At the time I shrugged and agreed. They’re the doctor, not me. Perhaps they’re still correct in this and I should remain with my current medication, Effexor. It is providing me an energy boost. But I still cannot focus. My memory is horrid. I’m no longer wanting to nap in the afternoons but a lot of ideas and projects I’d like to do sort of just sit there and gather dust. I have enough energy to exist in the day without feeling like a total zombie, but not enough energy or will power to do anything I actually want to do.
After I discovered the ‘How to ADHD’ channel on Youtube and found out about this place, it took me three weeks to get up the energy to actually sign up and type any of this.
I’m currently questioning myself and what I need to do. I feel like I just do not have the support around me to learn how to deal with these symptoms. My husband, as much as I love him and appreciate him, is not sure how to support me either. I am currently seeing a therapist but he doesn’t know much about ADHD so he doesn’t know how to help me either.
I will probably create a new thread about my current issues somewhere else at another point in time but the TL;DR for this post is that I came to the conclusion that I should give up. I don’t mean in suicide, but I mean in dreams. In goals. That I should accept that I am dumber than a bag of bricks. That I will never accomplish anything. That I should be content to even be married to someone who loves me for who I am. That I’ll never have a solid career or help fully with the house. That I’m faceless and I’ll never see a Bachelor’s degree. I should be happy that I can finally exist in peace without abusers.
I’m torn. I want to go into psychology. I want to help people like me who seem to fall between the cracks of society. But I don’t think I have what it takes. I don’t know how to get help. I don’t know how to change. And I’m scared that I’ll never be able to change without the right help, and that includes medication. I’m scared my doctors will continue to brush off the ADHD and want to focus only on my Complex PTSD and because of that I may never get the right therapy or medication.
Thanks for reading this,