View Full Version : Teacher with ADHD


thefer
09-24-11, 08:35 PM
Hi

I am a special education teacher who was diagnosed with ADHD many years ago. I have been on and off medications. Every August, I go in thinking that I won't need medications and I can handle it on my own. Then by the end of Sept, I am climbing the walls, overwhelmed and exhausted and feel the need to go back on medications. I feel like I am on a hamster wheel going around in circles. Thoughts are racing in my head. I am never in the moment. I can't focus on anything. I start things and can't finish them. I put things down and can't remember where I put them. I am very quick to speak without thinking. I have damaged relationships with coworkers because I say things without thinking. I have been in multiple conflicts with coworkers and my supervisor and I have only been at this district for less than 2 months. I go into school every day feeling disliked by everyone. Time management is a foreign concept because as a teacher, I have no time.

The tough part is that I want to stay in this district next year, but I am starting to wonder if I already have burned my bridge because of the ADHD and saying stuff without thinking. I have medication on hand so I am going to restart it tomorrow. I just hate the side effects of feeling like everything is slowing down.

Should I talk to my sped director/school psychologist about it? The working relationship between us is rocky. Should I keep quiet because I am not tenure. There is a reason for why I am acting the way I am. I am not a bad teacher but I feel like it a failure because I can't control what I say or think.

Thanks

KronarTheBlack
09-24-11, 09:21 PM
Find a medication that works for you and stay on it. I would never ever ever consider going one day without medication now that I have found what works for me. Its hard to say if you should stay at the district or transfer. Its not good to argue with your co-workers and supervisors due to your ADHD so you should get it treated. You definitely want tenure so you can never be fired heh. I am not sure what the Teachers Association in the USA's policy is on ADHD so you should research it.

PinkRoxy
09-25-11, 12:31 AM
Hi

I am a special education teacher who was diagnosed with ADHD many years ago. I have been on and off medications. Every August, I go in thinking that I won't need medications and I can handle it on my own. Then by the end of Sept, I am climbing the walls, overwhelmed and exhausted and feel the need to go back on medications. I feel like I am on a hamster wheel going around in circles. Thoughts are racing in my head. I am never in the moment. I can't focus on anything. I start things and can't finish them. I put things down and can't remember where I put them. I am very quick to speak without thinking. I have damaged relationships with coworkers because I say things without thinking. I have been in multiple conflicts with coworkers and my supervisor and I have only been at this district for less than 2 months. I go into school every day feeling disliked by everyone. Time management is a foreign concept because as a teacher, I have no time.

The tough part is that I want to stay in this district next year, but I am starting to wonder if I already have burned my bridge because of the ADHD and saying stuff without thinking. I have medication on hand so I am going to restart it tomorrow. I just hate the side effects of feeling like everything is slowing down.

Should I talk to my sped director/school psychologist about it? The working relationship between us is rocky. Should I keep quiet because I am not tenure. There is a reason for why I am acting the way I am. I am not a bad teacher but I feel like it a failure because I can't control what I say or think.

Thanks


Honey (((hug)))

I know how you feel it kind of sounds like me in my workplace, excpept I still have some workers I get along with but then what bothers me is having some that I think hate me because they dont want anything to do with me. I have arguements with my manager too lately because all he cares about is himself and noone else but then other workers agree with me on this one too.

Have you told them that you have ADHD because most work places can actually help you out if they know and then they can help you, it sounds like you got yourself a really good job and dont let people that you work with destroy your happiness there. You can actually get the friendship back if you apologise and explain and I am sure people will understand. I am slowly going through that process now.

Remember because we are actually functioning at someone that is 30% younger than what our age is something new I just learnt, it makes it harder because me being 25 I am functioning at a 17 yr old and I totally agree with that comment because it is so true the stage of my life is that of a 17 yr old.

At work people look at me as a 25 yr old and there is hardly any visible difference between a 17 yr old and 25 yr old so people at work expect me to have more responsibility and take care of other worksers and keep things in order and its hard for me even though I can manage I have done for two years but things do slip through my fingers and just general issues as being looked at as lazy when really I am trying.

Anyway I think that you should tell your boss because they can help you out and all the best aye. Hope things get better for you soon honey.

Old School MBD
09-25-11, 02:21 AM
I ran accross several adhd teachers in auto school......you are not alone as an educator with adhd!

Maby try another med if you don't like your usual.

Good luck and thanks for bieng a special ed teacher.....

Unmanagable
09-25-11, 03:58 AM
I work with 2 sped teachers that have adhd. I'm not sure what exact treatments they follow, but I know one of them takes meds. They have polar opposite personalities and methods of teaching, both of which are outstanding. They are two of the best teachers we have.

Maybe this thread can help you in some way:

http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=109577

I'd like to echo Old School MBD's gratitude to you for being a sped teacher. Who better to teach our children than someone who genuinely understands some of their challenges on a personal level.

May you find the treatment best suited for your needs. (((((HUGS)))))

sighduck
09-25-11, 05:32 AM
You are definitely not alone as a teacher with ADHD, im a teacher in training myself :D

heck, we even have a special section for teachers on the forum, though its pretty inactive now

thefer
09-27-11, 11:01 PM
Hi

Thought I would do a quick check in. I started stimulants over the weekend and it is amazing to feel calm again. I don't have a thousand thoughts running through my head and I can actually focused on one thing for once. I am less snappy and more calm. I did reveal it to my principal that I have been diagnosed with ADHD and I am on meds. He seems supportive and said that there is nothing wrong with taking medication for it. He even made a comment that I appear much more calmer and happier.

I seriously don't care for the side effects. The first night, I was up and down all night because I took it at 9 am. I couldn't even fall asleep 12 hrs later. On the rest of the mornings, I took it at 5 am. It appears to wear off well before 9 pm when I am ready for bed. Also, having a horrible time with no appetite. I fix something, take a couple bites and never finish it. Food does not interest me. I lost about 3 lbs since I started on Sunday.

Having ADHD does make it somewhat easier to relate to what the students with ADHD are feeling. I find that it is tough to figure out how to manage it as a teacher. I can help students deal with it but I can't deal with it myself. I have resorted to using medications to keep ADHD and my moods in check.

GSummers
09-29-11, 08:46 AM
I was actually really excited to see this thread because I am also a teacher with ADHD.

I teach pre-K (mostly 3 year olds) and have for about 3 years now. It's the only job that really "works" for me because it's high energy, never boring, and heck, the kids have a shorter attention span than I do. Plus believe it or not, I am so hyperactive that I can run circles around all those 3 year olds all day long most days.

I also work with another teacher who is ADHD. I don't know what all techniques she employs, but I know she is also on adderall as well. Just know that you're not alone as an educator with ADHD. I know how it feels to be in a classroom and feel like you're just going to climb the walls... figuratively and literally. I get what you mean about the side effects of the meds as well. It can make you feel like you're in "slow motion" and for someone who is used to going at mach 3 all the time, that can be pretty annoying. So hang in there, and maybe if your meds don't work, you can talk to your dr. and try a different kind.

Also to PinkRoxy - I had never heard that factoid before about someone with ADHD operating as though they are 30% younger. That makes complete sense to me because I still have always felt like I'm a high school or college kid despite the fact that I am now 31.

thefer
09-29-11, 11:04 PM
Hi

I am also teaching preschool special education. I am not sure how to make it work for me. I had so much energy that I have managed to stress my paras out and we only have prek for half a day.. My hyperactivity was causing my students behaviors to increase because I am bouncing off the walls. Last year, I did resource and I did well even with ADHD.

The meds seem to be working. I feel like everything is in slow motion. I would rather be hyperactive then in slow motion. I also notice that it is hard for me to get my thoughts together to speak whereas before I would speak without thinking. Once the meds wear off, I stopped dead in my tracks. Can't figure out what to do. I literally sat at my computer staring at it for 30 minutes because I was at a lost on what to do. This was at 4 pm.

I am planning to make an appt end of October. I am not sure if I will see a psychtriast or family dr. I just moved to a new town. I do need to find someone that can manage it.

GSummers
09-30-11, 10:38 AM
I think the "slow motion" effect is the worst side effect for sure. I sometimes feel like I have some superhuman power of "super speed" and taking meds makes it slow down. It is anywhere from annoying to maddening depending on what kind of day I'm having.

I am lucky in my personal situation in that I work full day in pre-K and we have a lot of opportunity to do stuff where the kids get to "get their wiggles out"... gross motor activities, indoor gym class, etc. Also when we go outside for recess, I typically am the teacher running around chasing kids, picking them up and tickling them, having "races" with them... the more exercise I get, the better off I am.

Good luck and take care in choosing the right counselor or doctor. If you see one that doesn't suit you, go get a second opinion from someone else. It's your life and you're the one who has to deal with your symptoms daily.