Hey everyone - this is my first contribution in this forum!
I am 25 years old, female and am about to wrap up university with a masters degree in a few months (yay!).
I write here because I have another one of those phases where I am really frustrated with myself and not knowing how I am supposed to deal with it. I never had issues in school. I passed tests either without studying or doing it on my way to the class on the day of the exam. I never had issues focusing on tasks that our teachers gave out, when reading my old school certificates it always said that I was very good at paying attention and in general I think I was doing very fine. Issues started whenever there was a need for more long-term planning: presentations where I had to meet up with a mentor to talk about my progress for example. Those are the only times when I was called out on bad planning and being “not organised” enough. I brushed it off though since I got A’s or B’s from that anyway.
I was a very emotional kid - crying every single day, not being able to cope with that, getting bullied, being the “weird kid”. I had random outbursts of anger. But besides that I don’t think I was problematic in any way.
For some reason though I feel like my symptoms got increasingly WORSE over the last 6 years or so. And I noticed it after I started to attend university. While I know that this is a very common breaking point with many people with ADHD I am just not sure if it’s me not being able to sustain my attention or me not having learned how to work consistently on things because everything was always so easy for me? I failed all my exams except one, when I couldn’t understand something my brain instantly went into “airplane” mode and I started daydreaming. I was staring at my assignments and hoping my partners would do them for me because they had more patience or it and this ended in alot of resentment towards me. It’s not that I didn’t try - but the way I studied just didn’t work anymore and even if I tried to start earlier and sit down in a library and learn something there was just a huge hole in my head.
After I decided to finally drop out and pursue a career in teaching (which was my mums idea since I kept procrastinating on finding something else) I told myself that I will do EVERYTHING I can to get a university degree. Every break I had I went into the library and tried to learn the lectures by heart, I did proper notes, I wrote summaries. Studying was my priority. And it WORKED. Until I realised after my first exam phase that I need to keep this pace up for at least 5 more years. And this is where my motivation started to decrease. I started to do less every month. I started to shorten the amount of time I study for each exam because the “rush of anxiety” two weeks before the exams wasn’t enough anymore to motivate me to action. Especially if I passed anyway. Without realising I started challenges of how short of a time I need to still get a passing grade. When realising I didn’t understand the subjects again when sitting in the lectures I got increasingly frustrated again. Got diagnosed with depression which I thought at that time might explain my emotional instability through my entire life. After two years of therapy I still couldn’t get over my laziness. I would go home, sit infront of my pc and watch videos, chatting. Forgetting I even had assignments from my therapist. Forgetting I need to keep track of my mental health. Not taking advice or remebering it one day before I go to my therapist. During those years I started to come too late to university lessons. Being told over and over in therapy that I make “life too comfortable” and I need to get out of the mindset that I can get through life being comfortable and not putting in effort. My memory got worse with my depression to and my attention span is now nonexistent. While as a child my issues could be summed up with not remembering what I wanted to say if I didn’t repeat it in my head all the time and daydreaming during lessons that didn’t interest me, I keep forgetting words about 10 times a day, forget what I wanted to say a second ago, not being able to focus on what I read infront of me or needing alot of mental effort to stay on it. I also noticed that working outside of actual university lectures is impossible for me because of whispering people (even in the library), kids or other kinds of stuff. I don’t know how people keep everything up WHILE ALSO having a job. I live at home and am still overwhelmed…
When I complained about all this to people on a discord server I was told that I might want to get evaluated for ADHD as it is highly consistent with experiences. When I mentioned it to my therapist she told me she doesn’t think I have it since I wasn’t diagnosed as a child but if I want I can get evaluated elsewhere. I search for over a year now and in Germany it’s impossible to get an evaluation if you don’t have the money. Usually there are also waiting lists but to get on them you have to wait for 2-3 years and they are closed now anyway.
No matter how many ADHD tools I try - I get hyped about them for about two weeks but then starting to get bored. If I don’t force myself to be productive all the time I don’t do things at all. At times I have days where I really need to get to work but my body seems to physically refuse. I am tired of not being able to read without it feeling like I am running into a cactus. I am tired of hearing that I just am not fed up enough with my situation to change. I am trying but it’s very hard.
To make matters worse, I am not even sure if I get a “pass” for my behavior anyway since I am not diagnosed with ADHD anyway. I don’t feel legit enough by checking symptoms off a list - no matter how relatable content is. I feel like a fraud, especially since I didn’t struggle that much in school. Especially since I will finish my second study without delays. Especially since I can get a master degree in the first place. I just feel like I don’t work hard enough because I don’t see a reason to - because it’s “comfortable” to? Because I will get my degree anyway if I give out something no so perfect after working the whole day for the couple of days? I can’t help but telling myself that my regular use of the internet and my laziness are the reasons why my memory gets worse every year. I even thought if I might need to get checked out for dementia. To me it feels like I am trying but am I actually trying if I do a To-Do list in the morning but already know inside of myself that I don’t ACTUALLY want to do it? Is it just depression?
I’m very sorry if this is too long but I am at a point where I don’t know anymore. How many more things I need to try? How much do I need to hype myself up to get stuff done? How much do I need to stress myself? How much self-discipline do I need to have? I will start working as a teacher fulltime from January on and I am honestly terrified because I need to prepare alot of things at home for it. If I break down I don’t know how I am supposed to continue from then on…