View Full Version : Master's Student problems...and I threatened my doctor today, looking for sympathy :(

12-03-14, 06:17 PM
Hey everyone! As much as i want to type this out into one huge paragraph and go on a rant like I usually do I will try to do brief bullet points for your reading pleasure :) Here it goes:

-always thought I had ADHD
-people have always been asking do you have ADHD or something?! regarding my inability to pay attention to what they are saying, forgetting everything, etc etc
-never did anything about it
-graduated high school and undergraduate with HONOURS
-obviously felt like i was battling with ADHD the whole time. I did ALL my papers the night before and studying for exams basically looked like frantically going over my notes on the subway train on the way to school the morning of the exam. Imagine writing 50 page research papers the day before they were do. Imagine skipping class all the time because its SO BORING AND HARD TO CONCENTRATE TO THE POINT THAT YOU ARE MAKING RANDOM MEOWING NOISES IN CLASS to get the professor to stop talking and divert their attention from lecturing. Imagine all this and THEN some, but doing SO WELL in school. THAT is why i never did anything about my "possible" ADHD if you may ask. If it hadn't stopped me from doing well, why would i take any action about it.

-this september i started my masters degree
-obviously the workload is WAY worse and the material even more dense and boring but OF COURSE i am not doing any of the readings, neither am i studying and neither am i doing my papers earlier than the night before the morning they are due.
-cant focus in class, constantly leaving to go hang out in the hallway
-blurting random things in lecture because i just can't take it anymore
-a vent to a friend in my program about who i think i have ADHD and she's like, yeah honestly i think you do (i've forgotten about all sorts of things like exams, things we have to hand in, papers that are due etc etc that she's had to cover my *** for) AND she says we should go to the doctor, ill walk over there with you.

-i go see the doctor at my university. at this point i am crying like a baby and in a VERY LOW mood because i am just so frustrated because i REALLY want to do well, and i enjoy my program. i do not want to drop out. i am sure this is what i want to be doing.
-she says its most likely ADHD so she gave me: a note for an extension on my assignments for a week, a referral to accessibility services at my school, and a referral to the psychiatrist at my school and told me to see her next week.

-accessibility services is waiting on getting me an ADHD assessment paid for by the school. it will take a VERY LONG TIME to obtain. like two months at least.
-went to my family doctor because i was so desperate for help i thought she would prescribe me what i want. She said i have depression (even though i argued about this over and over with her) and prescribed me antidepressants. i took them for a week but i kept on forgetting to take them so i just stopped.
-i at first trusted her diagnosis but then thought to myself OKAY I DO NOT HAVE DEPRESSION.
-went back to the doctor at my university, they confirmed that i don't have depression.
-went back to the psychiatrist for the FIRST time at my school. she said i don't have depression. I thought she would prescribe me the medication for ADHD but she didn't end up doing that, she said the same thing as the doctor at my university, that the results have to come back from my assessment and then she will give me meds. She suggested i read a book, Driven to Distraction and thats about it. lovely woman though!

-this all FIRST started a month ago, and i kept on going to see a doctor at least once a week.
-went to see my family doctor a second time and told her i don't have depression, she doubted that this is true which frustrated me so i CRIED and this further supported her idea that i have depression.
-next day i go to the doctor at school and she gives me a two week extension on my assignments. these notes she gives me make me feel a LOT calmer, but don't make the problems go away.

-FLASH FORWARD TO TODAY: exams are looming in the air, my first one is in two mondays from now and they will be back-to-back all that week. don't ask me if i have started studying.
-went in to see my FAMILY doctor again to tell her that i don't have depression, that i stopped taking those pills, and that i went to another doctor and a psychiatrist who confirmed that i don't have depression (to let her know that i wasn't just making this up).
-so we chatted a bit about my struggles and she wasn't being really sympathetic at all. Like i know you're not i psychiatrist but i came to see you and the least you can do is be an active listener and validate my feelings. she's so bad at this it frustrates me. anyways i ask her, "is it not in your scope of practice to be prescribing ADHD medications" (not in a know-it-all tone by the way-in a very sincere tone) and she pretty much said i NEVER initiate ADHD medication, bla bla bla, went on about that. and I continued on about i don't know what I'm going to do and how its so hard and told her about my struggles in the classroom and somehow what ended up coming out at the end is my saying "i just don't want to end up doing something bad like using recreational substances or buying ADHD medication off of one of my friends" and she said "okay so i feel like you're trying to threaten me with that comment"

-i left the office feeling horrible. i kind of was trying to coax her into giving me a prescription, like i only need TWO weeks worth of drugs anyway :'(
-i feel so HORRIBLE. i feel so bad for saying this to her. but can someone just validate my feelings here? I don't know why i did that. Im honestly SUCH a nice person, everyone gets along with me, people always say " i could never see you doing or saying anything mean"

ughhh i hate my life right now. I just want to hear that it's going to be okay. Ill be SO happy if i pass all my courses this semester after exams having NOT studied for them. but this is not how i want to continue.

-i was thinking of going back to the psychiatrist at school and talking to her again, seeing if she'd prescribe me something. I called and she is booked tip the end of the semester :'(
-the lady on the phone from reception said she'll make sure the psychiatrist calls me to talk to me. but of course this won't do much. i feel bad for bothering her and all of you who are reading this but i just do not know how to cope.

-the doctor at my university was saying that she's glad I'm not super frustrated/frazzled/crying/in a low mood like i was when i first saw her and that its a good thing I'm dealing with this so i don't get into that state again. WELL ITS HAPPENING!!! i just hate how I'm getting depressed symptoms as a result of not being able to cope with my ADHD. i don't understand why they will prescribe antidepressants with no problem but not ADHD medication. Why wouldn't they just give it to me? Maybe it's best practice..

-i don't know what to do. i am NOT going back to my family doctor for at least the next two years that i have doctors at my university available. i am so ashamed of what i said to her.

-the ply option is to go see my doctor (not psych but normal doctor) at the university and tell her about my ordeal. but i don't think she will prescribe me the medication, because wouldn't she have done so already?? maybe because her and the psych are hired by the school and there are more stringent standards for them to follow, like if students found out you could just go to the psychiatrist and get ADHD meds without any assessments or anything that this would turn into a bad situation? i really hope thats the reason that they're not giving it to me. I hope they don't think I'm faking it or something.

Thanks for reading, I really appreciate it :'(
if there is anyone else in grad school, hearing from you would be great for my emotional well-being right about now :'(

12-03-14, 07:58 PM
Welcome to the forum.

To this doctor, you sound like a person who is faking ADHD.

I don't know why, that's between you and the doctor.

Doctors near schools or associated in any way with schools are expecting students to fake ADHD in order to get drugs, and that's often their first thought when ADHD is mentioned.

If you think you need drugs just for 2 weeks of exams and papers and then you'll be fine without them after that, that also makes it sound to me like you don't have ADHD, makes me want to say "Yes, grad school is hard, everyone knew that already, it doesn't mean you have ADHD".

If you really do have ADHD - and it is a real possibility - then you'll have to be patient and not expect everything to fall into place conveniently right before exams. It can take months to get this all worked out, and your exam desperation is not working in your favour - it accidentally makes you look very bad. That's not your fault or anything against you personally, it's just a fact.

12-03-14, 07:59 PM
No struggles in school before this?

With ADHD, people have it their whole lives. It doesn't just affect them once things get hard.

Sorry you went through a bad experience, though. :grouphug:

12-03-14, 09:34 PM
-I never told the doctor that I need it for only two weeks. Why I'm saying that i REALLY need it for the next two weeks is because if I fail school I lose about $15,000 which isn't really great. What I meant by the "two weeks" is that if I could somehow have my focus just so i can pass my exams, ill be good to go because the school said that i'll probably get an assessment done soon and then ill be able to get all sorts of accommodations: software, an ADHD coach, one day spacing between exams, more time for tests, assignments etc. You can imagine that having your own personal ADHD coach would certainly be a HUGE help. Im not saying it would get rid of my ADHD, nothing will. But I feel like if i had that to my disposal I would be able to get by without drugs, maybe i wouldn't get by with AMAZING results, but i would get by enough to pass. the unfortunate thing is that of course i have to have the assessment done first in order to access all of these accommodations/resources. that is why i have become so desperate and frustrated, because i really want help now.

My exam desperation is bad, i know :( but i can't help it. this much money and a career I've wanted all my life has never been on the line so it's really getting to me now.


-i certainly have had issues in school starting out in kindergarten it took me a long time to finally learn English. I was still on picture books while everyone else was doing chapter books.

-I see that you've made a point to mention that people with ADHD have it their whole lives. I am well aware of that. However, we must not neglect to consider the effect that the environment can have on REALLY pulling the trigger on ADHD. The doctor at my university said that she has seen people who have completed high school, undergrad, master's, and it only became a problem for them when they got to their PhD. There are a lot of factors in the environment that could have gotten me by even if i DO/did have ADHD. All throughout elementary school my parents did my homework with me, if they didn't, i would have NEVER done it. So I still had pretty good grades in elementary school, but that doesn't mean i dont have ADHD. My grades were good but my behaviour not so much, i remember regardless of my good report cards my parents would always come home after parent-teacher interviews and yell at me because of all of the comments my teacher made about my behaviour-not sitting still, talking, disrupting other children in their work etc. The moment i started high school was when my parents stopped sitting at the table with me and that is when it really became real for me. I was called the procrastination queen in high school and undergrad. People who had barely gotten a start on their work would come to me and ask me if i have started because they knew my answer would make them feel better and subsequently this would make me feel like crap. Luckily in undergrad i had my best friend with me, she reminded me about EVERY assignment, test, etc. YES i graduated university with honours, but my doctor at school said it's totally possible for someone with ADHD to also have a high IQ and do very well in school. Thats why I don't like when people ask about how my grades were in the past. My grades were always very good and they are still pretty good (taking into consideration that i don't study for my tests and write all my papers the night before in a masters degree). The difference is, this is really causing distress for me right now. I don't like that i HAVE to do something the night before its due in order for me to be even SLIGHTLY interested in writing it or studying for it. Everyone else in my program is SO on top of things. It makes me feel like an outsider. I've talked to so many people and many of them have expressed sympathy, but they're not able to empathize, clearly, because they do not know what it is like.

-I am sick and tired of forgetting really important things. Im also sick of hearing people tell me that I'm not listening to a word they are saying, this especially hurts when it comes from professors who i am having a one-on-one conversation with. I want to listen, i want to pay attention but i can't. I was never able to pay attention in undergrad either, but it's completely different at a master's level as you can imagine.

I understand where you two are coming from trying to suggest that i may not have ADHD. Whenever i mention this to anyone in class they're all like YEPP I DO TOO! We all have ADHD. That just makes me feel a lot worse.

My doctor from school has also been talking to me about how this has been affecting my personal relationships with people and that if i get a proper diagnosis and treatment, that these aspects of my life will start to look up too!

I feel so bad for all the things I've said to my doctor and for being so desperate but I really did not see any other solutions. I was just being in the moment. Like i always am. And then regretting things i said or did, like i always do.

12-03-14, 09:44 PM
by the way, thank you for your replies. Discussing my situation and hearing from other people helps me cope a tiny bit.

12-04-14, 02:57 AM
I can relate to your school-related struggles. I had to do part of my masters studies on low doses of ADD meds and a couple of months with no meds (all due to medical reasons). It was nearly impossible and I considered dropping out and cried myself to sleep most nights. For now, just do your best not to fail, take as few credits as you possibly can, try to take EASY CLASSES that require very little work and try to find strategies that'll help you manage your symptoms as much as possible (e.g. exercise, flexible schedules, frequent breaks, working with others on research and/or assignments, using text to speech to read papers, going to office hours, pulling all-nighters to get things done on time).

12-04-14, 11:05 AM
id put all Of that energy and vigour for getting a diagnosis into studying for now. its probably taking up a lot of time and mental space which could be better utilised for the task at hand which is your finals.

diganosis wil either happen or it wont. finals will happen. get your head down and study whatever it takes

12-04-14, 03:01 PM
I'm sorry you're having such a tough time right now, kashmoney. What are you studying?

I wonder if there's anyone in your program, an advisor or faculty member, who you could talk to about what your options are if you think you're really not going to pass one or more of your classes. Yes, you might lose some money, but if you could drop one or two classes that are the most difficult right now, and make them up later, would you lose the full $15,000?

Or maybe it would be possible to get an incomplete on some classes?

I can understand the feeling of just needing the medication right now to get through the next couple of weeks... I can get by, barely sometimes, without medication, but if I really wanted to do my best or do something as intensive as grad school, I would definitely need it.

Just had another thought - it sounds like you do well when there is someone there helping you or keeping you focused. Does your school have any tutoring services? Or is there a professor, TA, or classmate who would be willing to set up regular study sessions with you?

12-04-14, 04:40 PM
Jenn1202: thanks for your reply! it feels good to know that someone can relate to my struggles. My physician at school was successful in believing in me and getting me out of my first ADD-induced emotional slump. But her and I are both worried about that happening AGAIN if i don't get my assessment and don't get treated. She wants me to get my assessment done ASAP and so do I! Like sure i kind of got over it, but if it affected my emotions SO negatively, it's best to take preventative measures too! I worried about what will happen on the tests in the ADHD assessment, like if i end up doing very well on them, will me doctor completely rule out ADHD? Hopefully not, because as as strategy she tried to suggest to me that i get more time for exams but i told her that i hyper-focus. Im always the first one to finish, and I get them finished in an astonishingly short period of time, and do very well considering having just glanced at my notes the morning of. Pretty sure I'm going to be able to ACE all the tests in the ADHD assessment, because when they pressure IS ON, i perform pretty well! Oh well, whatever will be will be. I will keep you all posted on the results once everything has been done.

I considered dropping out SO many times. unfortunately there is not much flexibility in my program. i have to pretty much have to do the full course load. If i fail something I'm pretty sure they give us ONE change to try again, but that isn't something i can lean on. Thank you so much for your kind words!!

Flory: thanks for your advice. But i think you can relate with the struggles related to fixating on something and not begin able to stop. I literally cannot get my mind off of this. It's always been like this, if i find some kind of distraction it literally turns into a vicious cycle and goes deeper and deeper. I have to find out EVERYTHING there is not know about whatever is bothering me/on my mind.

I wish i could just get my "head down and study" been trying for the last 8 years at least...
I told a peer today about my problems focusing in class and i ended of saying "i just don't know what to do, why is people's nose-blowing more exciting than listening to the lecturer?" her response: "just..focus!!" THANKS A LOT!!!! -_-

Chicky75: thank you for your sympathy :) I am studying occupational therapy. Ironic right? I could use an occupational therapist at the moment...
Of course i have talked to MANY people. I am a really outspoken person!! I literally have no shame in sharing ANYTHING about my life, i swear i share way too much sometimes!! I literally have no filter. I constantly live with so many regret about the things that have come out of my mouth. I just can't stop it, if i think of something/want to say something it NEEDS to come out!! Whenever i meet new people they admire this quality about me, however, in the long run it's been detrimental. So, i have talked to a lot of people about this. Faculty, peers, etc. There is not much leniency. I pretty much HAVE to pass this semester, which my doctor at school totally believes i can do. and to be quite honest i probably WILL pass. I'm just angry that i can't function normally. like when i look back on my life or when i reflect back on each semester i can't believe how much time i have WASTED trying to study. Staring at the words in my textbook, or going to the library for hours on end and having ONE sentence written down. Everytime i try to start things early they end up being REALLY poor quality. Everytime i do them last minute they turn out amazing. But i really don't want to live like this. When i only have school to worry about that's fine. But there have been times where i had work, school, and many other obligations to take care of and it has been a real challenge then.

What i hate the most about this situation is that i have always been able to have SO much on my plate. In undergrad i got straight As, worked four times a week, was ACTIVELY part of four clubs at school, had a social life, time for my spirituality, volunteered, and engaged in cultural and religious activities a few times a month.

So, of course i continued to work, sign up for clubs, extra certificates etc at the beginning of my master's this semester, but I REALLY cut it down. Like i was only going to work on saturdays for only four hours in the afternoon and i joined the student council which only meets one time a month and i enrolled in an extra certificate program which is a commitment of about 3 hours a week, not always, sometime less.

Progressively i have been cutting out these things, i withdrew from the extra certificate program that i worked hard to get into, i have not been going to any of the school council meetings, AND i have been taking off work like no tomorrow! I'm barely there. I thought these things would help but they didn't. I guess I have fewer things to worry about but it makes me feel crappy about myself because i was always able to take on so much.

Going to attempt to do some studying :'( Good luck to anyone approaching exams!

12-04-14, 04:41 PM
p.s. how on EARTH are any of you reading what i post? these things are novels. Even if you are skimming i am amazed at how you are able to extract such relevant information. You are all amazing :) ! Thank you !!

12-04-14, 04:51 PM
p.s. how on EARTH are any of you reading what i post? these things are novels. Even if you are skimming i am amazed at how you are able to extract such relevant information. You are all amazing :) ! Thank you !!

I honestly wasn't able to read your recent post, which is why I haven't responded. :( (the one where you responded to me)

Could you give a summarized version?

12-04-14, 05:43 PM
To be honest the main body was tl,dr

If you have managed to achieve high school and various things with honours you have some ability to get your head down .
Need to find a way to get back in the groove

Do you have a study skills seminar at your college ?

12-04-14, 06:56 PM
I have taken ALL of the study skills seminars in the world. I have been on my own case about trying to change the way i function for as long as i can remember- AT LEAST since high school: seminars, self-help books, counselling, etc etc. To no avail. That is why it is so frustrating, I've literally tried EVERYTHING because i don't want to be this way! People stopped giving me advice like this a long time ago because they know i know it but can't put it into practice. I could seriously be the person GIVING the seminars on study skills, organization, time management, etc-that's how much I know about the topics.

12-04-14, 07:15 PM
I honestly wasn't able to read your recent post, which is why I haven't responded. :( (the one where you responded to me)

Could you give a summarized version?

BellaVita, a summary for you:

- i know that ADHD is a condition that is present since early childhood. However, it IS possible to not have experienced struggles as a result of it for a large portion of your life and then have it affect you. Environmental factors are huge contributors to performance for people with ADHD. Sometimes (not ALL the time) environmental adjustments alone can solve many problems for people with issues related to ADHD.

-My physician at the university gave an example, she's seen many people who have graduated elementary, high school, undergraduate, master's AND only got diagnosed at PhD level, because before then, the condition did not impair them to a significant degree. They got by, which is what I'm doing. Getting by isn't the solution though.

-I have had issues at school since kindergarten. They have obviously not affected me to this degree though. As you already know, school gets more and more challenging each year, especially in university. So it started out with very tiny problems which could be swept under the rug or remedied by tutoring or other resources. At this point, the issues are too large to sweep under the rug, to the point where the individual is experiencing problems that wouldn't even be present had they received the appropriate attention from the beginning.

In my experience working for the school board I have seen this time and time again. I used to see children who didn't have any of the necessary skills to continue their education who somehow made it all the way to graduation. It's easy to turn a blind eye to a problem that is small. Then a snowball effect ensues and it's too late to actually do much about it.

Sorry that my summary is still a novel. I thinking it's slightly more streamlined than my previous post.

12-04-14, 08:11 PM
I worried about what will happen on the tests in the ADHD assessment, like if i end up doing very well on them, will me doctor completely rule out ADHD? Hopefully not, because as as strategy she tried to suggest to me that i get more time for exams but i told her that i hyper-focus. Im always the first one to finish, and I get them finished in an astonishingly short period of time, and do very well considering having just glanced at my notes the morning of. Pretty sure I'm going to be able to ACE all the tests in the ADHD assessment, because when they pressure IS ON, i perform pretty well! Oh well, whatever will be will be. I will keep you all posted on the results once everything has been done.

Usually ADD/LD assessment tests are nothing like school exams. You could do well in school and still do horribly on some of these tests/subtests. This is especially true if you've developed good compensatory strategies over the years that helped you do well in school.

12-04-14, 09:10 PM
Usually ADD/LD assessment tests are nothing like school exams. You could do well in school and still do horribly on some of these tests/subtests. This is especially true if you've developed good compensatory strategies over the years that helped you do well in school.

Ahhh very true. Although, I think my doctor will still consider treating me even if the results are conflicting. I'm totally hoping that I can magically change and be a different and more productive person without medication though :'( I don't want to be drugged :(

Haha, COMPENSATORY strategies are my LIFE.

12-05-14, 05:06 AM
I'd you we're diagnosed at a young age couldn't you use that information to convince doctors on your area.
I've studied and I don't miss the stress( or being pregnant).
It takes a while for your mind to get used to the meds. But if ADD really affects you, worth it.

12-05-14, 02:10 PM
I'd you we're diagnosed at a young age couldn't you use that information to convince doctors on your area.
I've studied and I don't miss the stress( or being pregnant).
It takes a while for your mind to get used to the meds. But if ADD really affects you, worth it.

I was never diagnosed, just to clear that up. From what I've heard from the doctor apparently I would know very quickly (approx a few days) if the meds were helping me or not.

Don't know where your pregnancy citation came from (that can be tough though :P), but the stress DOES suck though. At first i was relived to hear from the doctor that ADHD might be a potential diagnosis for me, everything made sense. Later on this started to make me feel sad. Right know its causing me to go through a kind of identity crisis and self-esteem issues. Everyone goes through stress, no one likes doing boring mundane work. But somehow NO ONE in my class has the same issues as me, no one relates. And believe me i have spoken with MANY of my peers, theres only a hundred of us anyway. A lot of people have opened up about their anxiety, depression, etc to me. But i can't relate to anyone with the issues that I'm having, i don't even know if they're real. I keep on going back and for and back and forth between wanting to be diagnosed and not wanting to get diagnosed, also back and forth between wanting to use medication and not wanting to use medication. It's such a weird time for me...

12-05-14, 04:44 PM
Man I hear the frustration and stress in your every post. It raises *my* blood pressure just reading it, so I can't imagine what it must be like to live it. :(

I sincerely hope you can get through the next two weeks, diagnosis or no diagnosis, meds or no meds. I'm glad that you at least have some support and aren't doing this completely on your own.

That said, I have my PhD, and while I've had supports throughout my schooling, it was during the PhD that I sought medication. Let me be frank, while they helped somewhat, they were *not* a panacea.

I would hope that if you were prescribed them, they would render you better able to read and process information, and therefore better at taking exams.

Keep in mind, though, that it may take a couple of tries to get things right, and doing so during a high-stress period like studying for exams, is maybe not the best time to mess with things. The first med I tried made me dissociate, increased my anxiety, and did almost nothing perceptible for focus. I had to go round two before finding any relief, and even that wasn't without side-effects (including not being able to shift focus when necessary).

Again, I sincerely hope you get the treatment you need, and that you are successful in your program. I also hope you're able to pass your exams, regardless of whether you're able to get diagnosed and medicated before they happen.

12-06-14, 03:08 PM
Yeah it's been more frustrating then stressful really. I have trouble recognizing if I am stressed or not. Most of the time, even during periods of high stress in school when everyone is freaking out, I don't feel like I relate to them-I kind of feel apathetic,but not really, it's hard to describe. I think if I felt MORE stressed I could actually get down to doing my work. Kind of like the hyper focus that happens for me sometimes when I do a paper last minute-but thats also SO different than stress.

I'm a really open-minded person, and I know that everyone (including myself) has strengths and weaknesses. This is especially apparent for me in my work with children. It's amazing how much you can help them learn if you just figure out in which ways and in which environments they work best in. ANYWAYS, I brought this to my doctor- "maybe I'm not supposed to be doing a master's? maybe my brain and they way i function is more suited to just going into the workforce...not everyone can go to grad school, everyone is unique and can do different things, that's what makes human beings so special. Why should i be doing this degree?"

her response: "well why NOT? why shouldn't you do it? I don't see any reason for why you shouldn't continue" This woman is amazing. She validates my feelings 100% and gives me so much hope. She uses herself as an example: "if i was in medical school reading my journals i would get bored, but that's much different than you, you can't focus, it's something else". It is SO difficult though to tell the difference between being bored and not being able to focus-they seem like the exact same thing.

Anyway, I think the reason why I was so frustrated with my family doctor (not the doctor from school, mentioned above) not prescribing me meds is because she was SO quick to prescribe me antidepressants. She is actually SO quick to prescribe me or my family members ANYTHING. We seriously have our own pharmacy at home the number of drugs we have. I guess my brain couldn't understand why she had been able to prescribe anything in my past and when i actually WANTED something she wouldn't. I understand that just prescribing stimulants because someone asks for them isn't best practice, and i could have communicated better with her, but i feel like she could have communicated better with me as well. I feel like she had more control of the situation, I was so on the edge and frustrated and she did nothing to help me recognize those feelings. I had to do it myself by reflecting and talking to friends. I was so agitated that day that i went straight to a walk-in clinic to see if they would magically prescribe me what i wanted (without success), then proceeded to text message all sorts of friends to see if they could hook me up, i then called and left a voice message to my psychiatrist, it was a massive snowball effect of anger-i could not stop myself to think about what i was doing though-it just had to be done- i sound like a drug fiend don't i? I finally came home, totally ****** off. But as i worked through my emotions, I eventually felt better. However, letting go of all my acts of desperation that day has been really tough. Slowly, I will get over it, it takes a long time sometimes.

12-06-14, 03:11 PM
I seriously have so much guilt though about "threatening" my doctor. Ughh, I hope she has an easier time forgetting the situation than I am.

12-09-14, 03:56 AM
OK- Try to remember you've made it this far without meds, you can totally make it a bit longer.

Because these types of meds are like legal speed, they can really mess someone up who has the proper brain chemistry, so they realllllly need to establish a history and a dx in order to prescribe them to you. I know its frusturating, but if you DO have ADHD, you will end up taking these meds for a long time and you will be glad you went about it the right way when all is said and done.

What's done is done, you didn't really "threaten" your doctor, you were trying to express your desperation for relief. Unfortunately, that is drug-seeking behavior, so she shot you down. Now you know, no big deal. (feeling guilty way after the fact is an ADHD symptom, btw).

What others have tried to point out, is that this condition affects you in more than one aspect of your life, so if you're only trouble is in school you may not get the diagnosis. For example, I didn't get diagnosed until I went back to school and both my home life and school life were in shambles. It's entirely possible that you have ADHD, but the question would be to what level of severity. Another poster pointed out his wasn't evident until he was perusing his doctorate, so perhaps you have the same situation on your hands.

Best of luck, remember to breathe and don't give up! It can be a long hard road, but it's worth it to get answers.

12-11-14, 06:37 PM
Yes, I THINK I will pass all of my courses. Just barely, but that's all I need and all I want.

I totally understand what the drugs are, how they work, and their implications. Which is why it is SO strange that I wanted them so badly, because I was always against drugs, prescribed or the other varieties. Not hating on anything, these are just my personal values.

I TOTALLY appreciate where science has taken us in terms of improving our quality of life, but I just wanted to point out that before this situation I wouldn't even dare take Advil or Tylenol for headaches or extreme menstrual cramps. I don't even want the Adderall or the Ritalian or the Vyvanse or what have you anymore, I just want to know how I can do things differently and actually make those changes happen-I've heard several times what i need to do, and i want to do it, believe me, but it just never happens :(

I do not know what had gotten into me. Like I had an urge to go and get meds, so I went to the family doctor (fail), got so mad, went to a walk-in clinic (fail), ended up even more distraught so I called my psychiatrist (fail-because she wasn't in). Like if i had been able to collect my thoughts and REFLECT and THINK about what I was doing, I would surely stop dead in my tracks. However, when I start doing/wanting something I will not stop until the mission is complete. Don't know why I hang onto things like that. And it's not neuroticism or anxiety. It's so different and hard to explain, like I am not satisfied until I reach the end goal.

To compare this to small situations in life: if say I want an ice cream from McD's and i go to the closest McDs and they're machine is broken. I will literally walk to the next one which is at least a half an hour walk JUST TO GET THE D*MN ice-cream, even though i don't crave it or anything. If I didn't go get it it would p*ss me off for the next few hours probably.

I think this kind of non-flexible thinking where i get STUCK is what got me into this rut in the first place. The initial event would have been when I read an email from my professor, several days after she sent it, that I handed in my assignment with a page missing. I literally COULD NOT let go of this thought, it was holding me back from doing my work or hanging out with my friends. All that was going through my head was "Oh my gosh, i can't believe i forgot, how could i forget a page, there were two whole sections on that page, I'm going to get such a bad mark, I'm going to go into the exam with such a low average, I'm going to have to get a 100% on the exam to pass the course, what does the professor think of me, sh*t how did i miss the page, i SWEAR i printed off the whole thing, what could of happened, did i accidentally hand in a draft, ughh it's probably because my room is so messy i don't even know which papers i was stapling, ughhh i need to clean my room, ughh no i don't i've never handed in an incomplete assignment before, this sucks... " and so on and so forth. This went on and on on my train home, on my walk from the station, during dinner, while i was brushing my teeth, and before bed, not allowing me to fall asleep.

I don't think this "thinking" issue is SEVERE. But it is moderately impairing my functioning. The problem is, whenever something like that happens, it seriously gets in the way. And it's not like I'm emotionally not "getting over it" its just this kind of thinking that i can't stop. It's not necessarily negative or making me feel depressed but it's kind of exhausting. Like I'm so aware of it, I'm like "brain, could you just stop thinking about that so i can think about different more important things". It's awful.

Finally began to kind of "study", because the pressure of five back-to-back exams is only slightly starting to influence me, but BARELY-other students are ripping their heads off and studying frantically, but me? I'm some kind of weirdo that doesn't care apparently until it's the night before.

12-11-14, 06:38 PM
Also, I'm not going to get into what my family life and social relationships look like... that would be a LONG post.

12-11-14, 09:05 PM
Heh. I'm totally like you with the getting stuck on things. Perseveration's a byatch.

Ironically, the meds made the getting stuck worse and that's why I don't take them anymore.

They were great for reading and researching, though.

12-12-14, 03:16 AM
Hmm... threatening your doctor doesn't work that well. I always tell my PCP doctor how beautiful she looks today. She knows I'm trying to charm scripts out of her, but she still likes it! :lol:

The closest I've gotten to saying something like what you did was just complain "I could go to Harlem and buy Heroin faster and easier than dealing with all this" or something at the pain doctor. It never got me in trouble but I don't think it helped.

12-12-14, 08:36 AM
As for the missing page: someone I know. Someone in charge of a lot more than I will ever be. Left off a very important figure on a very important document meant to secure us funding. I mean, it was like the evidence for the crux of the argument, referred to many times throughout ... And it wasn't there.

Crap happens

. This is totally a case of do as I say not as I do, but trying to focus energy on solving the situation rather than flogging yourself. It takes guts, but I'd almost try and send the missing page after the fact...with an oops and an apology. The worst thing that happens is that the professor doesn't accept it.

Personally, having taught college classes, I'd be inclined to at least look at the missing page, even if I wouldn't necessarily take it for full credit.

I totally understand an incident like that being the impetus to get treatment/seek meds. My breaking point was leaving something very important and perishable on a lab bench overnight.

Eta: I find often taking any kind of small step towards action (sending in last page, setting up appointment with prof) helps cut the rumination and perseveration. Making that first step feels damned near impossible, and I've spent many nights with those thoughts of failure whirling around in my head. But when I am able to shut up the damn voices and take that first step, strike up the ******* band!

12-15-14, 10:44 PM
OH LORD. my mother is going to our family doctor tomorrow. I'm so scared that the doctor is going to tell my mom what happened at my last visit 0.0

12-15-14, 11:32 PM
And now I can't continue studying :'( can't stop thinking about how tomorrow will go. Not going to be able to move on until my mother comes back from the doctor without any negative feedback...

12-16-14, 01:13 PM
If your doctor has any ethics, that convo will stay private.

Also, my experience in situations like this is that I tie myself in absolute knots over conversations, even playing them back in my head ... Only to find that the other parties involved have almost always (I can think of only one instance where my apology was not accepted) either forgotten about the incident completely, or have put much less weight on it.

I can almost guarantee that your doctor has been treated worse. It may be worth an apology, but I would genuinely hope that she could forgive your momentary lapse in judgment, especially if she's known you for a while.

12-17-14, 04:56 PM
I asked my mother how it went, thankfully nothing about me was mentioned, thank God!!

I do that all the time with replaying stuff, what I hate about it is that I can't stop it and it's such a huge waste of time, especially before an exam, not that I'm able to study anyways...

Thank you all for being here and for your replies, it's meant the world to me.

The semester is almost over with one more exam on friday. I didn't study for my last three :'( i tried really hard, i opened my books, organized my notes, etc etc but just getting down to it and attending for more than a minute is torture...

I have an initial appointment with an ADHD clinic booked for the end of January :'(
It's going to be such a long process. it will probably take the whole semester to get a diagnosis.

Hopefully my school will be able to organize something sooner. They are so slack, seriously! They could have started the process way earlier but thought that giving me organization tips, study strategies and a 30 day trial of Kurzweil would do the trick. Grrrr. In the meantime, my fingers are going to be crossed that I magically got decent grades on my exams and passed all my courses!

12-17-14, 07:12 PM
If you're anything like me (and given your posts, I'm betting you will at least know where I'm coming from), you agonize over exams and studying.

I know I put myself through the wringer. I always thought I was going to fail the test. Always. Sometimes I knew I was a bit underprepared, but it didn't honestly matter if I studied for 5 hours or 5 days, I still would wake up in a cold sweat at 3:00 in the morning and bust out my textbook from under the bed for one last run through.

I *never* had a good sense of how well I was going to do going into the exam. Sometimes by the end of it , I knew I had done pretty well. Others (math exams especially) I honestly didn't know if I'd managed to calculate correctly or if I had completely missed the boat.

I will say that often I wound up pleasantly surprised by my performance.

12-21-14, 05:35 AM
Hello, I'm very sorry to hear about your struggle buddy. I wad first diagnosed at age 6, and many times since, but my parents were opposed to meds, and it's always been my opinion that this was a result of stigma, misinformation, and ignorance on their part. I'm am 26 years old and finally wrapping up community college thankfully. I've been taking meds since February 2012, and I was profoundly disappointed when I finally began taking meds and realized they were not a magic bullet. You have to find the coping strategies and habits that work for you. I was always the smartest kid in my class, but when I got to fifth grade I stopped doing homework altogether. When I got to highschool I realized coffee helped (cigarettes too, but I don't want to advocate that, haha).Are you a coffee, soda,or energy drink drinker? Caffeine is a stimulant which is the type of drug that ADHD meds are. I couldn't perform consistently and successfully until these past few months, and I say now that my ADHD is finally well-managed, and I've read and reflected extensively. In my experience, stimulant meds are 50% of the solution, whatever motivation you have and your specific coping techniques are 40% of the solution, and environmental factors are 10% of the solution or 10% of the problem.I've been where you are med wise, and you got to understand that medication is not going to magically fix everything. It's easy to think that while you're pursuing treatment, but you'll be sorely disappointed if/when you do get meds. Also, I feel like you're self-diagnosising which is dangerous. If I recall correctly, the only person to actually say you had ADHD was your sympathetic classmate. Although, the school doctor said you weren't depressed, that doesn't necessarily mean you have ADHD. These are what's called prospective diagnosis, which is little more than an initial guess and at this point there is still not all that much to go off of. I also have Schizophrenia and have been in therapy and medicated for 12 years. Definitive diagnosis requires several months and even a few years of discourse with and observation by your provider. And even, diagnosis can continue to change as they learn more about you. For instance, I was diagnosed with Paranoid Schizophrenia for five years, at which point a new symptom became apparent and my dX was updated to Bipolar Schizoaffective disorder. And I've been a very proactive patient for many years, have read many books, asked a million questions, and even worked in the field. You are exhibiting textbook "drug seeking behavior. You have to remember two things. The doctor does not know you at all, and when you come in behaving erratically and persistantly asking for meds, that looks bad, very bad. The second thing is rather unfortunate, and makes things harder for legitimate patients. Many, many people lie,and manipulate to get ADHD meds, and the doctors simply don't have any reason to think you're not one of them Also, you could very well ADHD, you also might not. Tbdre are other things that can mimic,ADHD, one for which is depression with psychiatric illnesses there are of course symptoms, but there are also a sequence that symptoms usually happen in. I'm curious, how did succeed up to undergrad? Late night x
cram sessions, sheer intellect? What helped you get through undergrad? Does that no longer work?

01-04-15, 02:27 PM
OMG I JUST WROTE A WHOLE REPLY AND IT DIDN'T GO THROUGH UGHHH. Forgive me for this reply, it will be not as descriptive as the previous one. I literally had several paragraphs, and now they're gone :'(

First of all, thank you so much for your reply and for sharing your story. It seems like you have gone through a lot and are still treading the water, hats off to you. You also have great insight into your mental state and that is definitely helpful with your active participation in improving your quality of life.

-I'm not sure if I illustrated this in the posts following my initial post, but I am past the point of wanting medication. I'm that person who hates drugs and doesn't even want to take acetaminophen, ibuprofen, etc when experiencing physical pain. My actions were a result of my desperation, I hated the situation and just wanted to make it go away immediately. Yes, I know it is not something that can be fixed immediately.

-I know drug-seeking behaviour is bad. I know that I know that I know that. I hate myself for what I did and i know my behaviour was inappropriate. However, I do think that the doctor could have been more helpful. When I go to the physician at school she listens, she believes in me, she offers hope, validates my feelings, and offers strategies, no matter how small they are. I feel more at ease after I leave her office. Meanwhile, when I visited my family doctor I felt ignored, scared, pressured and stupid. She does not validate anything that I say, she scares me by telling me that I will DEFINITELY have to take anti-depressants for the rest of my degree and that in her honest opinion I should quit school altogether. Can you imagine receiving all the negativity and more all at the same time? And when I went to go see her a third time (to drug-seek and also tell her that I stopped taking my antidepressants after less than a week because I kept forgetting to take them and also because I saw a psychiatrist who confirmed that indeed I am not depressed) she says, "oh, well I never said you were depressed, I just wanted to give you those to calm you down", well thanks a lot, because you fully did diagnose me with depression.
End rant.

-If I get diagnosed, the school can organized an ADHD coach for me, which I think would be super helpful, something that would not be available for me once I graduate, at least not for free. I REALLY want to be helped, I WANT to move on, to change. It's hard. One initiative that I have for this semester is I have asked my friend from my program to review material with me anytime we have a break in between classes. This would only be about 3 hours cumulatively during the week, but hey, that's more than I study on average anyway, so it could be a good thing, it could bring positive results. We shall see how that goes. I am returning to school on monday and our grades from the previous semester will be out soon. I will let you know if I passed, fingers crossed./

-How did I get by in undergrad? I don't know. I did the same thing I do know, and the same things in did in high school and even before that: didn't study much (last minute only) wrote all my papers the night before. Even my final 50 page paper of undergrad was written the night before, and I still got a high 90 on it. That is what I did and that is how I made it by and got on the dean's list every single year. Do these strategies still work? I guess they do, except for that one paper where I don't know how but I forgot a whole page/section I have been doing very well in my master's considering the amount of effort I put in and the level of difficulty. I just don't want to go on like this. I don't know how to explain this, the doctor at school is presuming that I have a high IQ and that is what has gotten me by all these years, especially because I speed through exams. I beg to differ though, we had a standardized test in grade 4 I believe to test for giftedness, and I was not selected, so clearly I do not have a high IQ, I don't feel very smart either so I don't think it's the right explanation.

-Re: the caffeinated beverages. I don't consume anything caffeinated really. Just green tea once in a while. I have tried coffee/red bull a few times when I was feeling a bit tired as a pick me up and it did NOT pick me up. Those beverages made me feel very sleepy and on some occasions actually PUT me to sleep, so I just gave up on them completely because I don't need that added effect of sleepiness in addition to my generally "out of it" mental state.

01-04-15, 03:13 PM
Sorry I understand your situation.
Have you been officially diagnosed?

01-04-15, 10:24 PM
Nope, not yet. As you probably know the diagnosis takes a long time.
I have my first appointment at the end of the month, so the process is going to begin and I'm sure it will take at least a few months.

01-04-15, 10:49 PM
Nope, not yet. As you probably know the diagnosis takes a long time.
I have my first appointment at the end of the month, so the process is going to begin and I'm sure it will take at least a few months.

Oh dang...does it take a long time in Canada?

01-05-15, 09:41 PM
OH LORD. my mother is going to our family doctor tomorrow. I'm so scared that the doctor is going to tell my mom what happened at my last visit 0.0

Just so you know, that is 100% completely and totally illegal. Your doctor can't discuss one single thing about your visit with ANYONE other than those who are actively dealing with your care.

(Sorry, had to throw that out there, I know this comment is almost a month old. )