View Full Version : Thoughts on medication / thoughts on my life situation?

10-30-16, 11:06 PM
So I'm at a crossroads and need some help.

I'm having a hard time justifying using prescription drugs to help with my ADD PI bc of personal beliefs about life and and hoping someone might help shine some perspective to help me make a decision one way or another.

I'll try making this really brief.

I tend toward the idea that there's something after this life. I've studied near death experience stories for many years and believe I've heard enough testimony/evidence of things that are explainable, which, IMO, means that what we truly are is not this body.

So, that being said, I then contemplate what would happen to me years and years before modern medicine? I'd simply have to deal with my "issues", and that I'm somehow missing the point. I'm falling more and more into despair and fear and isolation, but I realize that I'm also not facing my issue and that I'm resisting it- I don't want to have it and I jsut want to be normal.

However, I then think, well what about all the people who have seizures and whatnot medical issues. Are they missing the point by getting medical aid? I honestly don't think so, but then I also think, well, from what I've understood, the afterlife is amazing from the majority of personal accounts, and this life can basically be... ****ty. Are we grasping on to something that's **** compared to what awaits us bc of fear? I just feel like seeking medical help for the reason of personal joy could be missing the point of life, it seems to be your inner will resisting what "god" has created for you. I realize that might sound crazy to some.

Here's one more thing. About 3 or so years ago I read a book that threw me into what people call "enlightenment". What I mean by this is. I'm noramlly very passive, aggreable, have social anxiety, am lost in thought, self critical, care what people think about me. However, after reading this, I just felt so much love within myself that all those things faded away. It was like my heart and chest area were on fire with the feeling of love. I was no longer afraid to be in a public space like a mall, alone. I suddenly didn't fret about my appearance really at all, it was kind of like ah whatever, when normally I have to look what I'd consider somewhat good to leave my house. My sister, who is older and tormented me growing up, and who I don't have the best relationship with still to this day, who everyone is basically afraid of bc she is somewhat unstable. For example, she flipped out over basically nothing at a family party a couple years ago, made a HUGE scene, and then stormed out, leaving her new husband and 2 kids at the house. She always comes to her senses and is embarrassed afterward but that's the kind of person she is- you have to almost walk on eggshells around her. Anyway, during this time of "enlightenment", I felt such love for not only myself, but for everyone, that it didn't matter how anyone acted, I had this inner silence that couldn't be stirred and she actually started to flip out one time and I basically calmly talked to her and she actually calmed down before she totally freaked out. Normally, I'd avoid that situation like the plague, but the stillness I felt inside made handing the situation not difficult at all.

And I know I said one more thing last time, but here's the other last thing. Right after I read the book I went to the gym to work out, and as I was walking in an older man held the door open for me and I almost wept from the amount of love I felt in that gesture. I know that sounds crazy, but it was real, and I don't care how crazy I looked, I'd trade anything to have that back.

Anyway, that experience also colors my perspective on the whole thing as well. I know it's going to sound crazy, but is love the remedy? Is our lack of self love and having constant self judgment what keeps us from peace? I'll admit during that time I still had ADD. I still couldn't read fast or retain what I was reading very well, but it didn't bother me. I used to use cannabis to help me with anxiety and it was seriously like I had the euphoria of cannabis without using it, so I didn't have any desire to use drugs.

I dunno. I dunno if anyone is still reading or not. I have this inner urge to share this with the world and be open about my depression and life's experiences, and want to help people break down barriers in relationships to make people closer, and feel like I'll have failed if I don't do this. I currently sit at a computer all day and have a stressful job that I'm not very good at but make 63k/ year so it's good money, so it's hard to quit not knowing how to pursue what I want to of if I'd even be brave enough, or even worse- if chasing that dream is really just another mind-created barrier to the joy I once felt, which is available to me or anyone at any moment.

I feel like the joy I might produce as the result of being on medication, or recreational drugs, is kind of like a mirage and fake. I dunno. I feel like I know what I need to do but am just to scared to basically put myself out there and risk losing everything (looking like a crazy person and have everyone be afraid of me, and walking away from an income) all for something I don't know what the result will be. I know in the end, on my death bed, I'd feel satisfied, even if everyone rejected me, knowing I had pursued this route with the intention of helping others. But it's just so scary leaving stability and walking out into the unknown (even though I know I'd regret not doing it).

10-30-16, 11:35 PM
Making Love the wellspring and touchstone of your thoughts, will, and action is a beautiful thing, in my experience.

Part of that is offering love to my own person.

Part of that is meds, so I have a chance of being my best self, so I have a chance to live my life with Love as a foundation.

Judging myself, or meds, or anything else, as "fake" means to me that I have renounced Love, and made something else central to my life.

As to the nature of this life, and if and what may come after, I do not know, and I am not sure, so I am agnostic.

Regardless, meds are just a tool, and I don't ascribe them, or their use, any value beyond the clinical.

Love transcends trivialities like medication, yet medication helps me to experience that.


10-31-16, 08:42 AM
Thank you for taking the time to read and respond! I tend to draw things out to an extreme to help myself understand things, so maybe it's not a fair comparison, but I just think, say we're on ecstacy. I wonder if that love that comes from that is real? Since drugs all have a down to match the high, and some drugs can kill you, and all lead toward a craving to use the drug to escape the current feelings we have, I always wonder if it's a trick. But then I think about how food is the same way sort of, or body craves it. But the only difference is out body doesn't need the drug to survive, but does need food. But then I think, well what about people who would die without drugs, then they need those as much as food for survival. I really hate having this over thinking in my life. .. :/

10-31-16, 09:08 AM
Your post really moved me. Self-love was foreign to me for much of my life. I felt even more inadequate as I struggled through the medication trials (for various issues including adhd) that afforded me very limited and sporadic relief while steadily leaving me feeling worse than I did when I started.

I was painfully stuck between listening to all the professionals and peer reviewed studies that indicated I should be feeling much better and should be able to function better if I just kept believing in them and kept trying even more of their methods while also trying desperately to listen to my body, which I eventually learned I'd been inadequately and mistakenly taught how to interpret to begin with. Misled and misfed pretty much sums it up.

I didn't read any particular book that made me finally feel the love, but rather totally immersed self into self by drastically flipping the script on my lifestyle (thanks to a visit to the ER) and started re-learning how to map my way back out, and back in again, as I continually make repairs to the foundation that's been so shakily constructed through the years.

The basics of nature seem to be my best tools for functioning, thus far, and the feeling of being fueled by what my innards recognize and thrive on has truly been the most enlightening thing I've experienced in my existence up to this point. Looking forward to what else may present itself before I expire. Grateful to be surrounded by such abundance, in all forms.

11-04-16, 01:54 PM
For many folks, myself included, medication is part of what makes it possible to receive, accept and give love.

Treating my ADHD aggressively allows me to give lots more love in the world--and to give that love in timely, and effective and skillful and concrete ways ... without feeling totally exhausted.

These days, what feels unnatural and fake to me is the horrible suffering and paralysis that resulted from not getting my ADHD and depression treated, through all means possible.

Just my two cents: getting treated is totally authentic and allows me to encounter life and appreciate life in all its agony and its beauty.


11-04-16, 02:08 PM
The enlightenment experience and prescription ADHD medications are not mutually exclusive, in fact not even at odds with each other.

Enlightenment is for the present, not just for a future hope. Enlightenment is a practical matter involving how to be in this world and how to understand and reach your sister and so on, just as much as (or more than!) a guide for death and what may come afterward.

Bringing everything into one eternal unlimited present moment, not dumping the present in favour of an uncertain future.

So, take your meds so you'll be able to appreciate it all. And if they stop working, well then you decide what to do about it.

11-05-16, 01:49 PM
Most of the things you write are so recognizable. I too believe in 'reincarnation'. I too experienced times of 'enlightenment'. I too got emotional when someone offered his/her love (like opening a door). I too long back to the feeling of hearth space, your hearth being wide open for yourself and other beings.

My 'spiritual teacher' used to tell me in this context: 'the toughest assignments are for the best in class'. I think of ADD as a tough assignment. Another thing he said was: 'there's no growth without pain'.

I also have mixed feelings about medication, but my main argument is if it gets your energy flowing again (and the upsides are greater than the downsides), go for it.

Would like to share this movie. I feel you can relate to it.

11-20-16, 08:10 PM
Well Nate, the good thing about medication is that you can always stop taking it. If you do decide the medication route is not right for you. It's not an all or nothing decision.

I don't think you quite get the point of getting treatment for ADHD. Also sounds like you conflate recreational drugs with medical drugs. You don't take ADHD drugs to feel joy. You take them to relive medical symptoms caused by a medical condition. Like other treatment you take them to be closer to normal. You may get joy from treatment if it makes you feel normal. But that is not the same as taking street drugs to self medicate by getting high. People with pneumonia take drugs for a medical condition. Not to feel joy.

I'm am "Straight Edge". Committed to an alcohol and drug free lifestyle. i.e. don't take substances to get high or feel more than good. i.e. I will take medications prescribed by a doctor to make me feel normal due to medical reasons. But that is it.

It seems to me that in your journey you are looking for spiritual answers for life in general. Treating ADHD and what sounds like depression and searching for happiness don't have to have the same answer. Learning to love yourself and others. Changing your frame of mind in social and other situations does not have to be the same answer as managing your difficulty with retaining what you are reading and being focused at work. You said it yourself, enlightenment did not fix your ADD although it helped with other aspects of your life. Why not treat them as separate issues that may have some effect on each other.

If you believe in God then why not believe that God gave people the ability to learn and to help each other. Whether that help is spiritual or medical in nature. People generally agree that God did not make us perfect. Why not also believe that God gave us the tools to seek answers and improve ourselves. In 1900 life expectancy was about 40yrs. Today I think it is around 80. I don't see God protesting our advancements. I'd say curiosity, drive, ambition, reason, free will, and yes, even science would be things "God created for you". Using these things for medical advancement I can't see as a sin.

I hate the idea of taking my ADD meds which are amphetamine based. Especially since I wanted to avoid any drugs or alcohol. But for me my symptoms were not manageable by the non-medicated ways. Non-drug related ADHD techniques are a big part of managing ADHD. But my symptoms are beyond their full reach.

That being said, are you formally diagnosed as having ADHD or do you just feel like you are? Depression and other things can cause the same symptoms as ADHD.

I'll admit during that time I still had ADD
ADD (a.k.a ADHD) is not something that comes and goes. It is a life long thing you are born with. There are factors that can make the symptoms better or worse but there is no cure.

I myself am a software engineer so I sit in front of a computer a lot at a job that requires a lot of concentration. With my ADD meds I am about 3 times more productive. And I feel closer to "normal". I can actually see my potential. I'm not so antsy. I don't feel like the day is just dragging on and on. I don't feel like everyday is a struggle to focus, concentrate, learn, and stay awake.

I was diagnosed after I was already working for over 3 years so it is easy for me to compare the with and without side of ADD meds. Admittedly, that is my experience and may not apply to everyone.

I then contemplate what would happen to me years and years before modern medicine?
Same thing as right now. You would struggle everyday more so than the average person. Don't have to look before modern medicine. What happens to people before they are diagnosed. Or to those that decline treatment. i.e. modern medicine not applied. People who are ADD are often mislabeled lazy, scatterbrained, generally have a much lower success rate in life (personal and professional), etc.

Even worse, old times they may have tried blood letting or some other stupid idea to try to "fix" you. LOL

I'm not saying medication is the answer. I am saying it is a tool you can try if non-medicated means of coping are not enough. Just don't think of medication as an answer. Think of it as a process. ADHD isn't the same for everyone and neither is a single medication. It's a process of finding the right medication, combination of medications, and doses.

From my own personal experience, if you did decide to try medication, I would consider Strattera. It is a non-stimulant. I found it was the least noticeable that I was on something but still worked well. Plus it also has been found to help depression. Only medicine that bothered my stomach. But other side effects it had for me were actually positive.
Ritalin and derivatives like concerta are stimulants but not as potent as amphetamines. These drugs worked well for me but I got used to them and they eventually were not strong enough. (There are factors why this happened for me in particular that I won't get into at this time).

Vyvanse is a "pro-drug". You can look that up. It is amphetamine in how it works but is harder to abuse. Wasn't strong enough for me. But I had tried it after amphetamines so I already had a tolerance. Might have been good for me if I tried this before Dexadrin and Adderall.

Dexadrin, Adderall, and other amphetamines. Fairly strong stimulant. The word "Amphetamine" made me really apprehensive about trying them but turns out they are the best solution for me in particular. Do have negative effects for long term use at high doses due to other factors in my life.

Haven't tried Intuniv but have considered asking about it.

There are some others you can look into.

11-20-16, 11:55 PM

Beautiful .... lovely writing and thinking.

Thank you for that.