Hi Brains, New Heart Here

O my god! I love seeing a heart here!

My life has been kind of upside down the past 3 years and it’s finally settling down a little right now.

I have been diagnosed at 18. And I always question why they never though about me possibly having ADHD when I was at elementary school cause clearly all the signs were there at that time. I always managed school because I was put on a too easy level. The level that I actually would’ve been able to reach I couldn’t because, well, undiagnosed ADHD. Could’ve landed my exams with a straight A if it wasn’t for the focussing issues I was having during the exam and actually getting complete black outs. It’s very frustrating, especially after the fact, that you could’ve reached your full potential of you only knew. That was the thing. I didn’t know.

All I’ve learned about my ADHD now is that I don’t see it as a disability anymore, but rather a difference in my brain structure being forced to live as a neurotypical being. And I’m not. I’m now learning to live with my brain and not fight it. I can make my home ADHD friendly (for instance, there’s fidget toys everywhere :joy:) so I don’t have to live in a way that my brain isn’t. And I’m happy about it. It doesn’t have to be a disability. That’s bull crap to me. It’s not. It is in a neurotypical world, yes. But really, it shouldn’t be.

I have my family and boyfriend who are all amazing hearts and they’ve been very supportive. My mom has difficulty understanding why something like vacuuming or doing the dishes can be so hard for me. But she will never say that I should try harder or that I’m lazy cause she knows I’m not and she knows I’m trying very hard. She did make me out for being lazy before though cause she didn’t know I had ADHD at that time. But good thing I’m very forgiving. My boyfriend actually helps me a lot. He’s also very forgiving and sometimes helps me to actually accept that I’m not always gonna get the dishes done if my ADHD decides to play up that day. I can always try tomorrow. And if I need help, he’s there. Even if he’d just came home from a hard day of work. He’s there for me.

I think what’s most important is that you support your through thick and thin. And it may not always show immediately, but I’m sure it would mean the world to him. And even if his needs might be a little greater then yours, you still have to make sure your needs are met too. So if you need a moment of help yourself, don’t hesitate to ask. We’re still capable of helping other people.

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Hi @ChynnaLu,

First of, I really want to say how much I admire that you take this kind of step. With your partner, that’s just, really sweet to see and it put a smile on my face at 3:00 AM.

Second, and I can not relate to all of this just yet, I only messed up relationships just yet, but I can relate to a lot of the school things you describe and what happened to your husband. I’m 23 years old, and I got diagnosed about a year ago (just started a study for the first time while diagnosed, kind of a mixed succes with online class) but I went through 2 earlier studies before this one, and through all of middle school and first school.

I used to be a kid which most of my elementary school teachers described as smart, but just lazy and able to accomplish more if he just put in the work. At first that isn’t, or at least in consciousness it wasn’t, a problem, but it continued right into and through high school. So from when I was about 8-9 years old (oldest memories actually at least) up until my graduation year at 17-18 years old I kept hearing that the potential was there, but that I didn’t use it to the fullest extent. So, eventually I took that to heart (or to brain maybe more lol) and started developing a radical sense of perfectionism, a social anxiety disorder and when I saw no different roads to dodge uneasiness I sought help, which is when I got diagnosed as well as helped with my anxiety disorder and some of the perfectionism.

This might be a bigger problem in societies, or at least in my country but I feel like it’s much bigger than that, but there’s such a big pressure on achieving in as short a time as possible for youth nowadays, that for students or younger school going kids with ADHD it works contra-productive. If I speak for myself this year, it’s just been a struggle with teachers and lots and lots of stress (perfectionism).

Thing is, when I sort of get worked up in that stress I forget more and more things around me as well. I live with my parents still (houses are just unaffordable here but that’s a detail), but my room is a mess and fun fact, my calendar still thinks it’s the 30th of January. Overwhelm is a big factor in that actually, it just makes me shut down and drains so much energy that I either forget other things or just procrastinate it, hence the calendar.

I don’t know if your partner has this too, but for me external sounds can be like… so stressful, and to a bigger extent when I’m feeling less good, which brings the emotional dysregulation along. I can have periods in which I have nights where I switch between extremes and everything else in there, from happy to sad, confused to confident, etcetera.

There’s probably a lot more that I still forget now, but thinking clearly around 3:30 AM isn’t my strongest skill. Thanks for sharing this post with us, I can’t stress enough how much I admire what you do, in my experience there’s been always so many people that think they know, or either just say do this, do that, it’s not that hard, and who clearly don’t know or never put in the effort to try to understand. And quite frankly, I don’t expect people to, it’s such a complicated thing that I haven’t yet figured out how I live with it being there, instead of struggling with it each day.

If there’s any question you or your partner has you can always drop me a message! :slightly_smiling_face:

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Hey everyone!

I’m sorry it took so long to respond. It’s been a LONG week and a half over here. Work stuff. Fighting with insurance, post vaccine exhaustion. The works. I so appreciate every one of your responses. They have helped so much.

This resonates so much. We just had a moment similar to this last night. As the person on the receiving end, it’s very difficult to know what to do. And I didn’t do a very good job last night. But knowing that his anger is likely coming from a place of anxiety instead of anger at me helps. And we have talked about that and it resonated with him. I struggle with anxiety personally as well. So I feel like I understand that feeling. However, I am able to stop myself after a moment and recognize what happened and turn it around. This doesn’t seem to be the case for him. He keeps going for a long time before he is able to calm down. And in the meantime I struggle to stay calm and helpful and often make things worse.

Can you expand on this for me? I often find that he has a LOT of empathy. He just doesn’t know how to apply it to the situation. And I don’t know if that’s an ADHD thing, a personality thing or something else. [quote=“quietlylost, post:19, topic:9621”]
Vyvanse for me brought the world into focus, and it calmed my heart and calmed my mind. It led to an incredible peace,
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This gives me so much hope. I just want that peace for him. I know his mind is always just going going going. So restless… And so focused on negative thoughts sometimes. I know there will be a mourning process. I think it’s already started. It’s also mixed in with “what if it’s not ADHD and I’m just this way and it’s my fault” because we don’t have a formal diagnosis yet. I’m hoping the process of getting a diagnosis will be quick once it starts. Because I have no doubt this is what is going on. If anything there might be something in addition to ADHD. I just hope that either medication or therapy or both can get him to that internal calm. [quote=“j_d_aengus, post:20, topic:9621”]
For me, the ADHD diagnosis brought much relief. Understanding that the shortcomings which I’d had throughout my life were due to my neurologogy, and not due to a lack of commitment on my part, or on some “moral failing” like laziness.
[/quote]

Thank you so much for sharing your experience. Both in diagnosis and medication. I’m glad to hear that your doc can work with you to find a better fit. I know that is a fear he has because he was just put on something as a kid with very little input or personalized adjustment. But there’s so many more options now. [quote=“Bubbles17, post:21, topic:9621”]
All I’ve learned about my ADHD now is that I don’t see it as a disability anymore, but rather a difference in my brain structure being forced to live as a neurotypical being. And I’m not. I’m now learning to live with my brain and not fight it. I can make my home ADHD friendly (for instance, there’s fidget toys everywhere :joy:) so I don’t have to live in a way that my brain isn’t. And I’m happy about it. It doesn’t have to be a disability. That’s bull crap to me. It’s not. It is in a neurotypical world, yes. But really, it shouldn’t be.
[/quote]

I love this whole paragraph. Thank you.

This is very familiar. I feel like a lot of his anxiety and perfectionism is a compensation for his ADHD and a defense mechanism for having to live in a world not built for him.

Again thank you all.

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UPDATE: I started on Atomoxetine (a generic, not the name brand Strattera) just nine days ago.

I feel more clear-headed than I was with Adderall, less anxious and a little more calm. I’ve also noticed that I’m less likely to get agitated in the evenings (which I think was a daily withdrawal symptom from when the Adderall XR stopped working).

  • Without medication, I have a bit of brain-fog almost all the time, which feels like it is in two distinct areas of my brain: upper forebrain, and lower posterior brain. Adderall only cleared up the forebrain fogginess, but atomoxetine clears my whole brain.
  • My working memory (at least for lists) is better than it’s ever been. I think twice the improvement that I saw with Adderall.
  • Both medications have helped me to be less easily distracted. I can’t yet tell if atomoxetine works better for attention than the Adderall did, but I hope that it will. (Atomoxetine can take up to 3-4 weeks for full effects to be noticeable. The fact that I noticed more clarity on Day 1 was remarkable in itself. I saw the fastest improvement by Day 5, but I think that I’m still improving at a slow rate.)
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[/quote]

Hello @ChynnaLu .

When you make a quick decision, based on reasoning, you need a focused mind , empathy can be compassionate, or with ADHD, think before you act, anticipate the feeling , emotion or reaction, or the current status. To handle a lawyer, or be had to have a strong mind, strong mind with empathy.

To handle certain situations, you have to have a strong mind. You said your empathy, does not know how to apply empathy to write the situation, this is my problem . I think it is an ADHD trait. Eg if you say a politician is a racist on a forum because of statements which are clearly racist Some people would it is slander or defamation. This is an ADHD trait not showing empathy , not applying empathy in the write situations.

I picked the psychiatrist who diagnosed me with ADHD in August 2020 because

  1. he telephoned me
    2)he accepted my dyspraxia and / or aspergers traits diagnosed, many psychiatrists would not assess me for ADHD because I have dyspraxia and / or aspergers traits
    3)the psychiatrist used questionnaires, data driven
    4)he did not need my father’s input
    5)I had a face to face assessment, a lot of psychiatrists would only assess online , he said my problems were largely due to ADHD, he hinted I have ASD traits, he said it is significant but not disabling like my ADHD , not including my dyspraxia.
    6)he is probably the cheapest

This why I chose the psychiatrist who diagnosed me with ADHD in August 2020.

Also a complicated Maths equation such as Navier-Stokes , is complex under different situations requires a focused mind.

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So ironic . . . I just started taking Lamictal/ lamotrigine to hopefully tamp down my emotional dysregulation (ED). As I described in detail in previous posts my getting angry over little nothings, with my wife bearing the brunt, has been a problem for years. I already take Wellbutrin and Prozac (both generics) but they never did much for my episodic anger.

The dosage of the lamotrigine (I’m taking the generic) needs to be increased gradually to avoid a rare, (but can-be deadly) Stevens Johnson Syndrome (SJS).

it’s too soon to say if I am realizing a benefit. I am only on it for three days now and the dose is very low. But I hope it helps. It’s an anti-seizure medication but also a mood stabilizer. An “off-label” use is for ADHD, more specifically for ED.

I had all sorts of concerns about taking any other additional medications. I scheduled an hour long session with my treating Psychiatrist who (coincidently) also has ADHD. Glad I did!

So, wish me luck!

:sunglasses:

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That’s awesome! Congratulations on finding something that works! :smile:

Thank you for clarifying. I appreciate it!

Good Luck!!!

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