Will I ever be able to manage? - CHADD's Adult ADH...

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Will I ever be able to manage?

B33TR00T profile image

I've been dealing with wanting to do things, yet lacking the ability/focus to do so... it's just tiring. Definitely tougher when you have kids. 😩

10 Replies

I think the ability to manage comes and goes in waves. Some days/weeks/years I manage really well, some I do okay with, and sometimes everything is exploding and I'm on fire and can't find a way to put myself out.

Life with ADHD is just....like that I guess. I can say with some conviction that those fluctuations in and of themselves become way easier to handle and the speed at which things go to shit becomes a lot more reasonable once you have some therapy/meds/supports around to help.

I definitely agree, it does come in waves. But that's so frustrating and unreliable, of course. I have less ups than downs at this point.

I've been considering going back on my meds, which I haven't been on for over 2 years. But I relied on them too much and so it didn't end well for me. Maybe I'm ready to use them wisely, hopefully.

I don't think it's a bad thing to rely on your medication. I mean if you were doing something actually bad (like reselling pills) then yes I agree that's wrong but simply taking meds at your prescribed dose isn't "being overly reliant"; at least in my opinion.

I mean we wouldn't tell the kid who needs glasses that he's "too reliant" on them to see! ADHD results from a chemical imbalance in the brain and meds are - one of - the tools we use to make up for the deficiency. But I would encourage you to talk to a doctor or maybe a therapist/psych before going back on meds if you're really concerned, they might be able to work up a flexible treatment plan that's less reliant on medications and leans more on non-chemical fixes (CBT etc).

That's actually a very good analogy. I wasn't selling it or anything, I was just using it mindlessly. Sometimes I was overusing it, definitely wasn't being mindful of the condition I was in. Therefore I learned nothing.

I did talk to my doctor about trying to avoid stimulants and why. He had me try Strattera for a month, but nothing. Which is why I'm considering going back to it now.

I was just starting CBT right before the pandemic. They closed down the offices shortly after and I haven't been back since. Definitely have to find someone soon, it takes me awhile to find a therapist I can feel comfortable with.

Do you have any daily(new or old) habits that help you out at all?

Thank you!

It is definitely tougher when you have kids because we can't just check out and it's 24/7. When my daughter was little, I didn't know I had ADHD, and I was always feeling guilty and ashamed at my "lack of ability" to just do what seemed to come easily to other people. Somedays it was like making pancakes was all I could do that day. Some days, I didn't have it in me for even that. Learning about Spoon Theory and recognizing that there are days when I simply have no spoons to begin with is helpful for me. Most days, I use up my spoons quickly. I count myself as extremely fortunate because my daughter was one of those kids who liked playing on her own. It also helped that I had 3 friends that I met when our kids were babies and we could support each other.

I've seen a few people on here mention body doubling where you find someone to be with you while you accomplish tasks. I've also read about "errand hanging" where you have someone that you do regular errands with. I just moved to a new city and I think it would be great to have someone to do regular stuff with like grocery shopping.

Omg, I can definitely relate.

I'm not sure what spoon theory is, I'm going to have to do a little research and see if it would help me at all.

And this was my first time on here, so I never heard of body doubling either. It sounds helpful for sure, but my ADHD overwhelms me so much at times that I want to be left alone(something else I need to work on).

Thank you! That's very helpful info, I really appreciate all the help I can get.

I so understand that overwhelm and the need to be left alone. That's one of the things that makes it so hard when we have children because that's usually not possible. I feel like it's okay to need that alone time and that we don't have to fix this so to speak, but just try to make sure we are getting our needs met, which I know is really hard. Our brains are always on, we get no break. So I think that alone time is imperative to our health more so than for "normies."

There's so much stimulation and noise in our world everywhere we turn. I think that's why starting a garden during the beginning of the pandemic really helped me. I could do something that increased my dopamine, while also having that time without even the usual noises of my family. Of course, I ended up ordering way too many types of seeds and planted so many things LOL! But I feel like it was one of healthier things I could do because it was really therapeutic. I stopped seeing my therapist when covid hit and my covid-ADHD garden, as I called it, made a huge difference for me.

Lol, sounds great 👍

I'm glad your covid-ADHD garden is working out for you. Sounds like a good idea to have a relaxing hobby to stick with. I'll be on the lookout for one myself(whenever I aquire some zen of course).

I tend to overdo it when I find interest in things also, I guess it comes with the territory.

Do you take any meds at all?

Not yet, but I have been thinking that I need to more seriously consider meds. I have more down days than up and it's affecting everything, of course.

Oh gosh, in my garden I was like, why plant 3 kinds of tomatoes when I can plant 10 kinds?! Why plant 2 kinds of peppers when I can plant 25?! This is actually what happened. I went all in and overboard and I think I literally planted 150 types of veggies, herbs, fruits, etc.! I bought SO MANY kinds of seeds and there's no way I could possibly use them all. My partner joked that the seed company was going to give me an award for putting their kids through college lol! Our yard was filled with containers and raised beds. And it was so gratifying because some new seedling was always popping up and I loved it. But it was way too much.

I feel your struggle with the waves too. We call them cycles since they always seem to come back around fairly regularly since we've had kids. My wife will notice it before I do and try to mention something so /i can course correct but we haven't found a way to make that work. I think I'm already too far into the drop in neurochemicals. I'm also trying to figure out what "refills" my bucket, kind of like spoons, to get me back up engaged and running.

I find being in nature regularly helps some even with the kids on a hike. Once you figure out your waves or cycle times you can start scheduling things that recharge you before the drop hits to try to avoid it, which is what we are trying to figure out.

To track and determine my cycle and trends I use Daylio on my phone. You setup the things you want to track each day and I just check them off each day or multiple times a day so later on down the road when I struggle again I can look back at my mood in the past and see what was going on in the past similar to now and see if I can find a trend. Knowing my memory is crude this has been eye opening in some ways. And I've found that I cycle pretty close to my wife's cycle too which might be TMI but it's very telling about our struggles together.

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