Reading problem

So, I think the usual story with ADHD is that it’s hard to read more than two lines. If something is boring, that can be sort of true for me but… I pick up books I don’t find boring and get sucked in for hours. And hours, and hours. And hours. Main culprits are fiction and tabletop, but I’ve even managed to get overly attached to a math book.

Does anyone else have trouble with binge reading in the same sense as binge watching? If you have a problem with binge watching, I’ll even take advice on managing that. It’s hard for me to stop once I’ve locked on to something and that can be a real time killer for me. Setting alarms and making sure everything important disrupts me with a loud notification is all I’ve got so far.

Side note: this also applies to projects and active things. I hear a lot about how hard it is to focus, but I have more trouble with the opposite, how to peel myself off of something that caught my interest when it’s no longer the time or place.

EDIT: in case I need to make this more meta, I really did lose work over this and the problem in more general terms is not being able to change tasks by importance. One more edit to add, reading is seen as desirable and there’s not as much of a time endpoint as there is on an episode, which is why it can get me detrimentally lost in time.

3 Likes

I wish I had your “problem“!

I have trouble reading, to completion, an article never mind a book. It’s hard for me to stay focused and keep reading. It’s funny, since when I was an adolescent I read quite a lot without any problem. One of my favorite books was CRIME AND PUNISHMENT by Dostoyevsky. The names were difficult to pronounce, never mind remember. The paragraphs were long as was the book. But as a 15 yr. old I was fascinated by it and read the entire book.

I do enjoy researching things and will quickly scan through an article, for example, and very quickly find interesting facts or the type of information that prompted the research to begin with. It’s like doing a scavenger hunt. I find something that links to something else related to the topic and I just keep digging and searching and finding. Both fun and satisfying. I am now retired. But when I was working, as a social work administrator, my passion for research was productive and valued by my boss, . . . But I would have a hard time letting go to tend to my other responsibilities! I found myself neglecting more important tasks in order to keep “researching”! Once I got started on a “scavenger hunt” I just didn’t want to let it go!

So that is my story. Thanks for listening.

3 Likes

Oh! I see that you just joined this group.

Welcome!

:sunglasses:

2 Likes

I’m the same way, don’t know if I would consider it a problem though. As a kid I literally just lived my life around it, but as I’ve grown older there’s been no time to read at all so the issues basically gone away… sorry I cant help but you’re definitely not alone :sweat_smile:
( btw I’ve gotten attached to my 1st grade biology textbook so I feel ya! )

3 Likes

I’m glad to hear your story. Just for clarity I know it can sound like kind of a non problem but I did get fired overfocusing on something irrelevant. I love to read and I don’t want to like, ban myself from it, and I can see why it’s annoying for someone to go on about Too Much when it’s hard to get started. I like your post btw it just prompted me to extrapolate, when I say it’s a problem I mean I’ve sat around zoomed into Wool when I had a project deadline- that’s the rub.

I haven’t read Crime and Punishment yet and now I want to put it on my list… buuuuuuttttt I need to get some time management down before I let myself run off and buy it.

And thanks for the welcome, this is a great community from posts I’ve browsed so far. I’ll try to put a lid on my chatter soon, it’s hard to shut up when I find something new.

4 Likes

Don’t worry about be it!! You don’t have to “put a lid on your chatter” because we’re the same and happy to hear you :grin:

2 Likes

Thanks, that’s really comforting to hear.

2 Likes

I’ve definitely had the all or nothing experience. Either I can’t focus at all on a book, or I get completely engrossed and start walking around with it. Sometimes it depends on the book and story, but I also know it’s related to my ability to focus sometimes. It’s so hit and miss, though. I will sometimes vacillate between the hyperfocus and inability to focus even within the same book. I wish it were more consistent. But, I can definitely relate.

4 Likes

As above, by QL, “hyperfocus” is the term you should search for and have a little “read-up”. It’s fairly common with ADHD and I have a big problem with this too.

2 Likes

I have seen the term before, but the posts I saw were about harnessing it or using it well, rather than turning it off. I’ll go searching again though, it’s worth a second browse for sure. If I learn anything good I’ll start a new thread.

1 Like

Not “annoying” at all!

Forget the lid . . . all “chatter” is welcomed! Besides, the more chatter . . . the more words . . . the more I will read :rofl:

2 Likes

Maybe try an intensive “re-train your brain” session!

Set yourself up with different things to do that are very different, say, reading, cleaning and preparing/cooking food. Whatever works for you.

Timetable these to switch every half an hour, 20 minutes, set your alarm on repeat.
Plan for maybe 2 hours to start with, then 4 hours etc.
The short time span should stop you from getting too engrossed, and you should be able to tear yourself away, knowing that you will be able to swap back again soon.

After a bit of time on this, you might see an improvement. I think it’s best with these type of problems to do a little bit at a time, rather than try and find the magic spell that will give you an immediate and complete turn around. It takes a while to learn these bad habits, it takes a while to un-learn them too!

3 Likes

How about you take a intelligence test… sounds like you are really smart

2 Likes

I have found that white noise or music helps, but I get very anxious when reading to the point I want to explode with frustration. Just reading these comments takes every thing I can to comprehend what is being written. I am almost 55 and have never been able to conquer this. By the way thank you for who ever developed spell check!!!

4 Likes

Do you think a software that breaks a large wall of text into manageable pages would help you? I’ve tossed around this idea in my head for a while, because it seems based on talking to others that wall of text gets in people’s heads and make them freeze, when they’re otherwise perfectly capable of reading and comprehending a piece of writing.

I wonder if combining a flashcard app with an e-reader to make text more bite sized would help, but I have the opposite problem so I’m not sure this is a solid idea.

2 Likes

@Tanjiskas While I don’t disagree, being a fast/avid reader isn’t necessarily an indicator of intelligence. Unfortunately, that idea has often been used in a harmful manner against those who may struggle with reading :neutral_face:

3 Likes

Hey thanks for adding to this, I don’t know how to word this right but the whole concept of intelligence testing makes me itchy. I have been tested, but going on about what I scored is irrelevant and helps lend it credence it doesn’t deserve. Reducing the complexity of the human brain down to a single number that is then used for comparison with others is… troubling to me. There’s been much said about tests reinforcing systemic bias, so I won’t go into that here, but even without that problem: These things are inherently flawed. Connectomics, as far as I can tell, is the most modern, algorithmically based attempt to understand what a brain is doing based on what is firing, and that field is so new you can’t specialize in it in school yet. So what are these IQ tests even doing?

For example, the Stanford-Binet has vocabulary questions. If I come into it from a background where I had less time to sit around and read, did I become less smart? No, but my score would go down. Some well-intentioned alternates try to take the language out of it and focus on pattern recognition, but that is also a skill that can be molded by experience. People get faster at tasks they do. People who struggle to attend to a book are probably not going to be as word savvy- but I don’t think that makes them less intelligent.

Heh I could start a whole other topic complaining about intelligence testing but I’ll stop here. I don’t want the person who mentioned it to feel bad or anything though, I think they were trying to compliment me.

3 Likes

Absolutely!! I had these exact same issues…
oh good point! Whoops

2 Likes

I am a slow reader and also i am apparently intelligent which i didn’t realize until January when my therapist told me i should really take a intelligence test. I didn’t like that idea because i always felt like a failure and i felt like this test is going to prove it.

If you know more about yourself you may understand yourself better. Yeah so i am trying to work with that now…

3 Likes

Agreed on that.

I was against it to but it tells you why you are feeling so different. I understand now that me being frustrated at work is something i can work on.

3 Likes