Background information and question a... - CHADD's Adult ADH...

CHADD's Adult ADHD Support

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Background information and question about medication

Skittlebrain profile image

Hello there!

Just to give some background I am 28 years old and have known I’ve had ADD all my life (never hyperactive, only highly disorganized, forgetful, and inattentive). I look back at my second grade papers and see so many clues I don’t know if any of you can do that but I for sure can! I would always forget to show my grandma my planner that had my homework written in it, so I got to the point where my teacher said I want you to have your grandma sign this every night. That worked… For like a week. Then I was forgetting to have her sign it and my teacher was always writing notes that I would never stop talking or daydreaming, she always called me spacey and even at the end of the year when everyone got candy to describe their personality & talents (smarties, fun dip, etc.) I got a Milky Way because she said I was always out in space and never with the class. That hurt my feelings for years to come, I’m sure some of you can relate to teachers that were just awful to you And made you feel stupid which made everything worse. Anyways my whole point for this is to ask if anyone else is struggling with the thought of getting on medication because they feel like it would take away part of who you are? This is why I struggle with the idea of going on medication. I have only been on medication once and it was too long ago to remember if it actually had an effect on my productivity, all I remember is it made me feel very jittery and I quit it after a few weeks. That was when I was around 20 or 21. Anyways Can anyone relate to this? I am a toddler teacher I have been working with children since 2012, I manage my symptoms through coffee and self-help books/strategies. It mostly works but I can never be on time anywhere to save my life, guarantee you I will always be running four or five minutes late, this is my life.

13 Replies

Do medicate

Do a low dose though

Just enough to help organize but not to ruin you like it did for me

I suggest you have another conversation with your psychiatrist about the meds. Coffee is a terrible way to manage the inattentive ADHD - I have that . I do not take meds now due to a Cardiac condition and my cardiologist says NO NO- to stimulant meds - I treat myself n( after consuting with an MD and a Pharmacist) with Cannabis tincture 8:1- 8 parts of CBD and 1 Part THC- works frankly better for me than meds ever did

As for your latemedd- DO NO +_ DO NOT DO NOT - accept that you cannot and will never be on tinme. Some years ago I was often hors and I mean hours late to thinks . I thought - I will never be on time no mattter wahat I do

But guess waht - Ia mam rarely late now.

How did I do it .. Support from ADHD groups- meditation and work with my therapist and coanch - You have to decide if this time mismanagemnt is interfering with your life - only you can change it

Have yu ever tried and adult ADHD group ? Took it three times - very very helpful

by the way I am a Nurse Practitioner

Hi there, I have Inattentive ADHD, and was not diagnosed until my mid 20s. I can relate to a lot of what you mentioned. I was usually the last one to finish exams all throughout my academic career, teachers and T.A.'s would yell at me and tell me negative things, and lots of kids gave me a hard time due to spacing out as well. I found out about Inattentive ADHD through browsing google, since I was under the impression that ADHD only had the hyperactive subtype. Anyway long story short, I researched ADHD for months, got on medication along with Supplements (which are essential) and it has dramatically changed my life for the better. I am now completing my Masters program in psychology and plan on obtaining my PsyD. to become a Clinical Psychologist who works with the ADHD population. I myself take a very low dose of stimulant medication once or twice a day depending on the week. Unfortunately taking stimulant medication only helps the brain with the neurotransmitters Dopamine and Norepinephrine. That is helpful, but this still disregards the other neurotransmitters we have low levels of. A good strategy plan when it comes to supplements and ADHD, should include aiming to help the brain with the specific neurotransmitters that give us the most trouble due to their low levels. The following neurotransmitters need be addressed.

Dopamine : A neurotransmitter in the brain that affects your levels of concentration, motivation, pleasure senses, and sense of pain.

Norepinephrine : A neurotransmitter and stress hormone that deals with attentiveness, emotions, impulse control, planning ahead, sleep, and interpreting actions of others.

Serotonin : A neurotransmitter that deals with mood regulation, sleep, nervousness, empathy, appetite, digestion, and sexual urges.

Acetylcholine : A neurotransmitter that deals with muscle contraction, pain responses, mood regulation, REM sleep, and coordination.

if you click my profile pic, it will take you to my profile, where in my bio you'll see theres a link of a google doc I made of every supplement I take that includes ones specifically to help those low neurotransmitters I mentioned above. I also have a video series on my youtube channel about issues people with Inattentive ADHD face through the years and things we can do to help. I also published about ADHD (particularly Inattentive ADHD). Hope this brings some help and insight.

Bless your heart, and yes I can relate somewhat.

I'm 53 and take Vyvanse. It works for me and I'm ok with it, but I feel like if someone doesn't want to be on medication and would rather look for other ways to manage, then do that. medication is just a tool anyway. You still have to learn skills.

In school, I would often daydream, and draw rather than do my work. I could do the work just fine. I was an intelligent kid and very capable, but I just couldn't keep up because of the carnival of thoughts I had going on in my head.

I remember a time when when a house was being built across the street from the school I attended, and lucky me my desk was by the window in direct sight of the fascinating project. I'd stare out and watch the construction crews each day. One particular day my teachers hands came slapping down atop my desk. I jumped and turned to her angry face; "I've called your name FIVE TIMES". The whole class erupted into laughter, and as the room calmed down the girl in fount of me turn with a snotty glare and said; "your're stupid." .....That kinda hurt.

These where common incidences for me. Many Teachers didn't like me much because I made their jobs more challenging. I never got my feelings hurt too much though. I always tried to see myself and others, as unique individuals who all suffer in our fallen nature to some degree or another. I knew was not the person they sometimes made me to be.

In the 70's ADHD wasn't as widely understood as it is today. We weren't diagnosed and medicated then like kids are today. Because of this most ADHD people of say, GenX or babyboomers, I believe suffered more abuse, and neglect on average, more than later generations, but certainly we all have suffered from others more than neuro-typical children. We're difficult for others to accept or deal with sometimes.

So, I can relate to your story, and so can many other ADHD adults and children. As ADHD adults we have an obligation to assist others with ADHD, particularly children. My youngest daughter is ADHD. I recognized all the particularities as she began school. So did my wife but from an educated neuro-typical perspective. We medicate but also build on skills. The medication is just a tool, and I think if you adopt that view you can do well with both. The medication works well and it's some of the safest medications our today.

Hi Skittlebrain,

Your concerns about using medication is a valid concern but I challenge that thought with a new prospective.

Background information about ADHD, part of the disorder is insufficient amounts of serotonin, dopamine and epinephrine, which affects your brains ability to function optimally. These are chemicals, it's not a personal choice how much a person makes.

People with diabetes also don't make the chemical insulin. As a society we don't tell people not to take their medication (insulin) because it will make them a different person. We encourage them because it will make their lives better.

People with ADHD have less brain chemicals and medication helps their body make enough.

The hard part for each person taking medication is finding the right dose. That part can be difficult, but when you do, your life will be yours but just a little easier.

My husband has ADHD and when he takes his medication correctly he's organized, on time, funny and seems more self confidence because he regains more independence because I don't have to constantly remind him of things. I have a nephew who is in 3rd grade who has ADHD as well, and the results are similar. He performs better at school which has done wonders with his self esteem and has helped him keep friends because he's not a impulsive with his words and actions. He's much more attentive to his friends.

I now it can be scary but the worst case scenario is that medication is not right for you and you stop. Because scenario you found another thing that helps you manage.

Good luck.♡

Thank you all so much for your input! You have helped immensely, especially your stories Danc2019! That made me feel better in my struggles, I know we all walk a similar path in this disorder yet it affects each of our lives uniquely but a common problem is being made to feel stupid or inadequate. And that really hurts the self esteem over time. Thank you all so much though, I’m considering medication on a low dose just to see if my work performance is positively impacted. As it is, I manage but with great difficulty to keep my kids in my class on their schedule and get all the daily tasks done in a time frame. Typically I can’t walk out of work without at least forgetting like 5 things I needed to do or bring with me so I have to go back. Anyways thanks again guys and God bless! ❤️

Also thank you EH2019 for being so sympathetic to the fact that this disorder is no different from a persons brain that doesn’t produce enough of a chemical like insulin’s so true, we didn’t ask for these faulty yet chaotically wonderful brains but we got em 😄

I started on many different types of medications through my life. A lot of them just didn't work and made me feel too jittery, very moody or I just didn't like how it made me feel. I now take Adderall and so far it has started to help me stay focused. It takes time for it to work for me about a week, I started to notice a change. It depends on the individual and how many mg. I also take supplements to help with brain power and focus. I noticed just taking the supplements is not enough for me. I was hesitant to take medication but realized that I don't know until I try it. If it doesn't work, I have the choice to stop taking them. So far it's starting to help me to stay on task.

I had problems with lateness too. It's called time blindness, and setting an alarm when to leave for an appoint helped me. We have Alexa echo and I set my alarm with her. She is pretty loud for an alarm. Time when to get ready, & a time when to leave . That is starting to help me. It takes practice and having the time in each room. I use my cell phone to remind me the time and an alarm.

Good luck . Never give up and ADHD, & ADD support groups help me too. I recommend trying medication. We are all different and some medications will help better for other people. Over 100 different kinds of ADD and ADHD medications out there.

I had never heard the term time-blindness, but it fits. I have a habit of having alarms for most things, and a fairly strict ritual for daily tasks. Before I was diagnosed, sometimes my wife would call me at work and angrily demand to know why I was not home for dinner. I would glance at the clock and see that it was almost 8:00 pm when I was expected to be home by 6:00 pm. I had no clue how much time had elapsed.

I remember being the daydreamer too and struggling through school. One of my h.s. teachers thought I had a hearing problem. At the time I didn't know anything about ADHD and ADD. Back in the 80's I was diagnosed with LD ( learning disability.) Until after H.S. and around 2012 I was tested and was diagnosed with ADHD.

I understand your apprehension...however, medication has actually allowed me to be more of who I am...since it helps to clear the fog in my head and decrease my symptoms!!!


When si look back over my childhood, I realize that there were signs as well. While I had a higher than normal IQ, I alwaysbstruggled with school, undergrad and grad school. My perseverance, determination to succeed and and my prayer life sustain me.

At the age of 38 or so, I stumbled across, or maybe not, my ADHD diagnosis -- resulting from a friend trying to gett Adderall to be more focused and to lose weight. She sent the online assessment to me to me. Initially, I thought she was trying to get me to get this med to lose weight too. Truly, I had no interest in this, she practically annoyed the heck out of me to just check out the assessment. Tonappese my OCD friendly, I had her to send me the link. After joining the online assessment. I was paralyzed by the results. I didn't want to accept the results. I went to a psychiatrists, and explained I took this online assessment it's results.!And the results. After taking his exam it confirmed. He recommended I take meds. I walked out still in denial. Later insaid, I have come this far in life without meds why start now. Plus, I was already on antidepressants for mild depression. My other reasoning for not taking ADHD meds was I wanted to be a mother one day and didn't want all these meds in my system. My regret today is, the 2nd or 3rd year after my child was born, I should have started the meds. Pride can be painful. Later when I was premenopausal things was worse. The main point I want to make is, personal experience, the older you get the worse the ADHD gets. Please do not wait until all hell breaks out to get on meds. Do not let ADHD dictate your narrative, you control it. Do what you need to have the best lifeb possible to include making the best decisions and having better relationships with everyone. Today, at 50, wish inhadbI started the meds 7 years ago, I would be in a better place with relationships, my career, and oh my God with my finances. From the outside looking in I have a pretty decent career, a six figure income -- many would call me successful. But, I know what I am capable of, and that I was not poised to live up to my.potential-- because I refused to buy into.this “ADHD thing” and take the medd and have another label placed on me. What has truly driven me to nhave a “come to Jesus” moment about my ADHD was my brilliant child who IS graced with excellence in so many things; whom I give the best of everything.......and an organized mother with a messy houses and annumber of fallouts with family and friends. .He and all other children deserves better. Because of my love for my child, about 15 months ago I started taking ADHD meds. Things are better, but I feel like I have a great deal of catching up to do with relationship, professionally and financially. More importantly, I am learning how to love again.

I didn't mean to share all this today. However, I felt the need to share my story as I am nevb to this platform. I hope itjis helps you and others.

If you don't want to try medication, try exercise and meditation....both work really well for me

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