Overwhelmed with e-mail, deadlines, and simple tasks

Hey all,

Came to this forum because I feel that speaking to someone will help ease my fear of checking my school email. However, there are no friends or family who is not a professional who I would feel completely comfortable sharing my struggles with.

I am in undergrad and was diagnosed with ADHD before my third trimester. At the beginning of the school year, I could tell something was off because I know myself well enough, but I refused to acknowledge how serious it was and that is was affecting my work ethic. Things quickly went downhill, and once I could finally admit something wasn't okay, I was diagnosed with ADHD. The diagnosis was a relief but also difficult to embrace, and moving forward from there was also difficult in a different manner.

I have since started my treatment, which has helped me improve greatly and changed my life, but I still struggle. It is difficult for me to check my email and without my medication, to leave my dorm room. I've missed deadlines for school and study abroad by weeks turning to months. There is a possibly that my grades have fallen again and that I have been removed from the study abroad program. The tasks themselves are simple, but my time management and missing deadlines overwhelms me. It would be so simple to just get things done or check my email and know for sure, but the fear of the outcome keeps me putting it off. Having someone to support me really helps reduce that overwhelming feeling. Thank you for your help and for reading.

9 Replies

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  • Hi ssbdb.

    The hardest thing is admitting studying has become a problem. You have done that so congratulations! :-)

    Please go to your school website and look for the student services assistance program.

    Student Services will support you throughout your study and in all areas of your student life. Student Services want you to succeed, so they will be there to help you meet your study goals every step of the way. Student Services provide a wide range of services, some of which you can access from the moment you get in contact with them.

    Student support services staff are there to help you enjoy your study experience again and get the most from your studies.

    Whether you need support with study skills or your disability, student support services are guaranteed to help you towards a better future.

    Be prepared to honestly share your concerns. The counsellors do not have a crystal ball.

    When you have made contact, make sure that you have a date, time and name of the person you will be seeing in the appointment.

    Give yourself a break and get in touch ASAP.

  • When the psychiatrist assessed for ADHD did he consider alternatives? It sounds a lot like anxiety and ADHD meds will not help with that. Perhaps it worth going back or getting a second opinion?

  • I was having anxiety just doing my homework, which prompted me to go see a counselor. The ADHD is the underlying cause of it because that's when I have trouble doing my work or meeting deadlines. The meds actually do help with my anxiety because I feel much better and can think of all the simple things I need to do without becoming overwhelmed. However some things, especially study abroad and essays, are so overwhelming that only medication doesn't help enough. I am planning on finding strategies with my counselor to help.

  • Ah ok that makes sense. I hope your counsellor helps you find some strategies. Are there student mentors available where you are? They can sometimes meet with you and help you plan what you need to do and break things down into manageable plans/ chunks with you to help you. If not maybe one of your personal tutors could help? I'm not sure how it works where you are but hope you find something that works for you. It must be such a disappointment if you were looking forward to the study abroad.

  • Thank you all for your help and support! I checked my email as soon as I woke up this morning with a friend on standby on my phone. I even checked my grades! I'm still okay and now that I know that I can move on with completing what I need that's past deadline. Thanks y'all!

  • If you are in the US, your diagnosis entitles you with reasonable accommodation to assist you in succeeding in school. I have a nephew with your diagnosis and that assistance included tutors and other assistance required for him to complete his education. Doesn't seem as though you knew this or that the school you are attending were advised of your diagnosis and the assistance you needed. Look into this as soon as you are able. :)

  • My school does have accommodations for learning disabilities but is limited in what they can do. They can do things like extend deadlines or add freebie days to miss. With ADHD they usually extend deadlines (at least that is the experience that some other students have had). Unfortunately, I was struggling all year but was diagnosed in the third trimester. We can't have a meeting with the Dean of Students (who deals with academic accommodations) until we have a form of diagnosis, which I wasn't able to get from my doctor until close to the end of the year.

    I had a school counselor who I would see almost every other week but she was a grad student from a different university nearby, but she didn't know how to help me and I also didn't know so we were kinda stuck. Also it's an ongoing kind of thing right now because I just started seeing a professional a couple of months ago and there could be factors other than the ADHD that are contributing to my struggles. Now that I am done with school for the summer and have fewer responsibilities, I am focusing more on working with my psychologist on identifying my struggles, their roots, and strategies to combat them.

    My gpa reflects my struggle to stay organized and complete my work on time, not how smart I am lol. I struggled with confidence in work ethic, not intellect. Because I'm still as smart as I was before, but my work ethic seems affected. One of my worries is that I plan on pursuing grad school for physics and they might not see it that way when flipping through applications.

    Study abroad luckily is still gonna happen, for now. I leave in two months, and my goal until then is to implement new coping mechanisms, especially for time management, at least some successfully. I hope that before I potentially go to grad school, I have the tools I need to stay organized and complete tasks. Although I am smart, organization and punctuality are very important, too.

    Thank you all for your help! I am optimistic about the future :)

  • I feel the same way about deadlines. Mine is more due to the way my parents raised(lenient) than ADHD though.

  • Yeah I grew up with a parent always telling me what to do next, so now I struggle with time management on my own.

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