View Full Version : 24, lost and new to this site.

12-14-15, 05:21 AM
Hi all (sorry if i'm asking in the wrong spot!)
Extremely long story cut short, all my life I haven't been able to focus on anything, even things I enjoyed for more than 5 minutes. When I was younger I was able to focus a bit more on things I enjoyed, fast forward i'm 24 and I don't find happiness in anything really, on the premise that I can't focus long enough to reap a benefit.

I'm at uni, currently in my second year, I always start with 4 subjects which then goes to 3 some times 2. I haven't gone to classes for a year and a half I don't do any readings I kinda just guess answers and pass.

I recently had a break down when trying to sort out how i'll continue on in life (as I more or less just kinda go oh well and go off into my own little world rather than face issues, I know what I need to do and how to fix it I just can't make myself care..?)

I've had depression all my life, and was diagnosed recently with bipolar and ADHD. the bipolar was in relation to my mood swings and spending any spare money on crap essentially. I'm not sold on the diagnosis of bipolar, I believe the mood swings are in relation to a realisation of i'm 24 and this needs to be fixed I want to enjoy my life. The spending and what not I believe is in relation to my constant struggle to find an activity I like, there fore buying new shiny things.

I've been on apilim/epilim? 1000 mg a day for the bipolar. I recently stopped taking Ritalin I was on it for a bout 3 months and kept going up in dosage till I was on 80mg a day. It did nothing for me, I'd sometimes feel socialable/positive for half an hour but that was it. Even at 80mg it didn't affect my sleep.

My psych has moved me onto dextroamphetamine 10mg per day. This has done nothing but made me sleepy, I wanted to start at a larger dosage as it seemed really really quite low but he wanted me at 10.

My question is has anyone had an experience with medication not helping? I said to the psych as i'd been trying to get off my ritalin for a while (reason being if I wasn't feeling anything at 60mg why would another 10mg kick in and give me some form of assistance, I didn't understand why it'd not show any signs of assisting my focus but suddenly kick in at a high dosage) I asked what would happen if the dextroamphetamine didn't work, he said in that case I may not have ADHD and will need to look at something else. I pointed out to him 5 minutes ago he'd explained the pit falls of abuse with ritalin/dextro and people who don't have ADHD and use them to assist with study asking how it'd work for them if they don't have ADHD to which he said "I don't know" (fills me with confidence)

Any help/pointers/personal experience is appreciated!

12-14-15, 07:45 PM
It's great that you are speaking up with your doctor.

The only thing I can suggest is to consider going to another doctor, getting a second opinion.

Lots of conditions can mimic the symptoms of ADHD, so the basic thing you have to get is a good and accurate and helpful diagnosis ...

By the way, a 10mg increase or decrease in a medication can indeed make a huge difference. Yes, some people get little effect at X dosage and get a huge effect at a 10mg higher dosage. Happens all the time. So your doctor isn't crazy to increase the dose of the same med before trying out a different med.

The other thought I have is that it might be good for you to see a counselor. My visits with my psychiatrists are very short ... My visits to my therapists are much longer and much more frequent ... and frankly, my therapist helps me see patterns in my behavior that I can then bring to the psychiatrist.

If you have the resources, I might find another person to reevaluate you to see what they have to say and go from there. Often good to get a second opinion.

Good luck.


12-14-15, 10:04 PM
(For those in the U.S. and perhaps other places, Epilim is often known here as Depakote.)

12-14-15, 11:05 PM
Awesome! Thanks for the kind words. It's good to know there is some method to his madness. I'm currently booked in to get a second opinion (early feb I think :rolleyes:)
I might go to the psychologist I was seeing previously as well. His appointments are meant to go for an hour, I try to drag them out and i'm lucky to get 30 minutes.

12-16-15, 05:25 AM
Definitely get a second opinion. Regardless of what you have, any doctor that is using your reaction to a medication as a means to confirm/deny a diagnosis needs to be reconsidered.

12-26-15, 09:00 PM
I was diagnosed as bipolar II for a while because I had occasional hypomanic afternoons -- I tried a lot of the standard medications and they both didn't help and I had bad reactions to them. The diagnosis eventually got changed to depression (with occasional incidents of drinking too much coffee).

I think if there's any chance of bipolar, doctors treat for that first because antidepressants can set off full manic episodes. I wonder if your spending issues are just a symptom of ADHD impulsiveness -- that's the case for me.

There are some people with ADHD that aren't helped at all by stimulant medications. The effect is minor for me. I don't feel much difference when I do or don't take them -- the main difference is that I have a better chance of sticking to projects and finishing them when I do.

It sounds like your inattention issues are much more severe then mine, so I hope you and your doctor find the medication and dosage that works for you.