New ADHD Diagnosis


#1

Hi! My name is Mikayla and I just turned 17. Last week I just got diagnosed with inattentive ADHD. It’s been something I’ve had a hard time with all my life. This was my first week on medication and I have noticed some signs of improvement but it’s still so early on. I’ve always known I am different because I can never focus, always fidget, zone out, day dream, forget things, lose things and never follow instructions.

My biggest problem is my relationship with my mom and dad. My mom understands I have ADHD but is on the fence about actually treating it. She allows me to take my medication, but thinks it’s not worth me going to therapy or counselling.

My dad doesn’t believe in any disabilities (I know…) he thinks I’m perfectly fine, I’m just lazy. Yes, he’s got all the resources from my paediatrician. He doesn’t help me or understand me at all.

Has anyone gone through the same thing? I just feel so unheard and like no one understands or cares.


#2

Hi Mikayla, Happy Birthday (better late than never…), and welcome to the tribe.

Why would somebody encourage their own daughter to NOT try and improve their chances in life? I really don’t understand that one at all. But you’re far from being the first person here to experience it. Unfortunately it’s common enough that it is a trend.

I never even knew about ADHD until I was 49 last year. My parents were supportive to me (in theory at least) when I was growing up.

But, to this day, my Mum has a nasty habit of finding me at my absolute lowest point, and then prodding me mercilessly. Pushing me towards the edge. Parents, huh? Can’t live with them, can’t shoot them. And it makes it ten times more difficult when someone is ruining your life, but with good intentions. So you feel ungrateful as well, and rude. On top of being a lazy, inept failure.

Honestly, nobody else will understand you better than yourself. And even then, the brain can play some strange games which hide the true picture from you. But it’s never true that nobody cares about you. Just don’t expect too much out of people, and you won’t be disappointed by them.

In your life so far, you have interacted with thousands of people. Most of them will have positive memories of you. Or neutral at least. There will also be a number of people who just do not like you, or otherwise view you in a negative way.

Our condition is such that we will tend to remember the negativity that we seem to trail behind us. We are not so good at recognising praise, or positive emotions. It’s nice and everything, but you will tend to focus more on stuff like “I really don’t understand how I pissed off Person A yesterday… What can I do today to make amends?”

How often have you stayed awake all night hyperfocussing on the positive things in your life? Instead of replaying bad conversations, bad attitudes, and mistakes all night?

My point is, that if you have 1000 positive things happening, it’s the 10 crappy things that will hog your brainwaves, to the point where it’s all you know.

It’s really common for ADHDers (there’s got to be a better name for us… It’s just too clunky…) to let friendships slide, just lose contact.

Those are the people who care about you. Maybe not as much as you like, but keep them near. Make as many small efforts as you can to stay in touch, and to maintain the friendships.

Be aware that right now, you are at nearing your peak in many ways. At 17, you will be fitter, healthier, prettier, smarter in many ways than you will ever be again. Some things improve with age, but it all starts slowly going downhill after about 25-30. And you’ll never know which direction things will take. Personally, I just get more and more handsome every year. :-):joy:

You are a shining light. You have the glory of youth on your side. You don’t think you know it all yet, and you still have a curiosity that will help you leave everybody else behind you.

You have the capacity to be so far outside of everybody else’s box that you can’t even remember why you wanted to be inside that box in the first place.

And while it is difficult, sometimes impossible to do much about it, remember that you are setting yourself up for the rest of your life right now.

You can either stress about that, or try to rise to the challenge. But nobody else will do it for you. I wish that I had taken that idea a little more seriously than I did.

In my own life, I just coasted along, waiting for something good to happen, and spending all my money on booze while I waited. Waiting never works, unless you have a family fortune behind you to waste.

You are not lazy, your Dad is dead wrong about that. You are fighting ten times as hard as anybody else, just to be two steps behind them. It’s tiring. And sometimes it’s absolutely fine to just chill on the couch doing nothing at all.

Everybody else can rest when they’ve worked hard, why shouldn’t you? Because you probably work harder than anybody else you know, all day every day, just to be in the same game.

And your paediatrician helping with the misdiagnosis… Been there, done that. It bugs me to tears when somebody in such a position of responsibility decides to actively undermine people with misinformation and rubbish. It’s inept, unprofessional, lazy, almost malicious, and possibly criminally liable. But the world still turns.

Anyway, you are not alone, and you can win this if you play the game your way, not theirs. It’s our game now.


#3

I’m thinking that my last post might have come across as harsh, and possibly insulting (wasn’t meant that way).

When I wrote @Mikaylarylee about being at the peak, and that it starts going downhill, I didn’t mean that everything will get worse, and that there is no hope… Not true.

Everything changes over time, including your own perceptions. Being young has its strengths, but getting older (wiser, more experienced, more mature etc.) has its strengths too.

I just wish I’d laid a better foundation for myself when I was 17. Hindsight gives you 20/20 vision.