New Life, New Me

I was struggling in my relationship and on the brink of losing my job (again). My boss had instructed me to shadow my coworkers and figure out what they were doing differently that enabled them to do their job. When I realized that in most cases our processes were similar, I felt defeated. I looked inward and just saw the all the other times I had failed. I started to believe that I was just lazy and self sabotaging as I’d always been told. I was reminded how the job I couldn’t afford to lose wasn’t even something I enjoyed but it’s where I landed myself after failing pretty much every class in high school. Get this, I tested so well that I received a scholarship to my university of choosing but because I struggled to do homework I didn’t have the GPA to get accepted to said university…

I had never even considered the idea that I was ADHD, I grew up in a home that didn’t believe ADHD was anything more than a cheap diagnosis for children without discipline. I had stumbled on Jessica’s TedTalk by accident, I frequently listen to TedTalks in the background as I work on other things and it just happened to be a queued video one day. But as I listened I really connected with everything she was saying… I hung on every word. After listening to it twice, I started down the rabbit hole. I spent a week watching videos and reading articles learning as much as I could. At the end of the week I sat down and just wept. I finally felt like their could be an actual reason for my struggle, I could finally look back at my failures and forgive myself because they were no longer my fault.

I immediately called my mom and ask for help finding a psychiatrist to see. I went in completely open minded. I want going to tell him what I was there hoping to hear and if he had a different opinion I was at least hopeful I could get some help and still improve myself. 30 minute into the session and he says it, “I’m going to be honest here, I am absolutely convinced you had Adult ADHD and that’s it’s caused anxiety and depression disorders, all of which are treatable with therapy and medication…”. I was stunned, I didn’t know what to say which made the doctor think I was rejecting the idea! I was quick to come clean and let him know I had thought the same thing but I didn’t want him to think I wasn’t open to other ideas… I’m now about 6 weeks in, we are still adjusting my meds and seeing a therapist regarding what I know know are impulse controls issues but my life has change completely. Yes, the medication has “robbed” me of who I was, but I don’t miss that person at all, I almost dread knowing they come back when the meds wear off but it’s less and less of a hindrance everyday.

Since my treatment began I feel like I’ve been given a second chance. My work is improving, I’m spending more time with friends and family, my apartment has never been cleaner and I’m going after everything I’d been too afraid to do thinking I would just fail like I always had. I finally have the confidence to enroll into a local community college and work my way up to that university so I can pursue my dreams.

TL;DR I’m incredibly thankful for Jessica’s courage and desire to inform. My life has completely changed for the better and it’s because I was finally able to ask the right questions.

My name is Stephan, I’m 26 and I have an ADHD Brain!

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Welcome Stephan. I too have an “ADHD Brain” . . . Only difference?

I’m 74!

Barry
:sunglasses:

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Welcome, Stephan! Pretty much verboten what my psych said to me first visit. It’s pretty cool to have this new pathway, hey? I finally get what my 12 step program means by “an attitude of gratitude.”

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Welcome to the HowToADHD forums, Stephan! I found Jessica’s TEDx Talk the same way. It helped me to accept the idea that I might have ADHD.

I’d already recognized that I had some of the same struggles as people with ADHD (distractibility, time management and organization issues, procrastination), but I still thought as myself as a neurotypical person who had a few issues. The first time I considered that I might have ADHD was after doing a LinkedIn Learning training by Dave Crenshaw, who has ADHD. (That was at least three years ago.) I saw Jessica’s video in Spring of 2020. What was different was that she shared her struggles from childhood into adulthood.

My real struggles started in adulthood, but when I thought back to my childhood looking for the patterns of Inattentive ADHD, it was obvious to see that they were there all along.


@S.Nikirk it sounds like your diagnosis and treatment have been going well. I hope that you’re able to start accomplishing what you want to do. It’s good that you’ve been diagnosed in your 20’s. (I got my diagnosis a few months ago at 45. Medication has been helpful, but just enough to get me to a functioning level, so it still takes effort to direct my attention… But it does enable me to do so!)

There are times that you might have to be patient with yourself and the process. But keep moving forward.

Welcome to the tribe! :grin:

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@S.Nikirk
Welcome to the community!
I’m fairly new here as well and received my diagnosis after having to change doctors to one that would take my concerns seriously.

“I had stumbled on Jessica’s TedTalk by accident, I frequently listen to TedTalks in the background as I work on other things and it just happened to be a queued video one day. But as I listened I really connected with everything she was saying… I hung on every word. After listening to it twice, I started down the rabbit hole. I spent a week watching videos and reading articles learning as much as I could. At the end of the week I sat down and just wept. I finally felt like their could be an actual reason for my struggle, I could finally look back at my failures and forgive myself because they were no longer my fault.”
This was my story as well.
It was Jessica’s raw emotions in her videos and the willingness to fight for herself and for others who were struggling that made me finally seek out the help I needed. She saved me and most likely more people than she could possibly fathom. She sincerely deserves an award and some world recognition for the amazing work that she is doing!

Like @j_d_aengus , my diagnosis came late at 47 but I had to have known at some level in my brain that I too had it since my daughter was diagnosed in grade 5 with the inattentive type. Looking back to when I was a child, it was painfully obvious but back then ADHD hadn’t been discovered and so I struggled alone and slipped through the cracks at school as I was a quiet shy girl and was easily overlooked.

Now, I am fascinated with how my brain works and it’s like a light bulb has gone off and I feel immense relief. There’s a reason why I think and do the things I do and I can work with this now that I understand it better. There are so many resources you can find online now and there are therapists etc… that specialize in ADHD,… and there are forums where you can be yourself with friends who understand your thoughts and feelings because we have them too.
My name is Heidi, I am 47 and I have an ADHD brain. Welcome Fellow brain Stephan!

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