View Full Version : What i'm going to say (Big Post Alert)

02-03-17, 06:27 PM
So I feel like i'm closing in on an assessment. I'm going to fill out a checklist at the college on Tuesday. When it comes to the assessment, i'm going to print out a copy of what i've said below (unless anybody feels I should change or add something :confused:)



My main problems at college involve trying to process information when I'm reading, especially when it's a lot of things to try and read. Staying focused on what the lecturer is saying, when they talk for an extended period of time (Longer than a few minutes without interruption) as I tend to zone in and out while they are speaking, leaving me to try and fill in the blanks later on. Organizing and prioritizing my work load. I tend to hand in written reports late. I find them overwhelming and often need help structuring them properly and ensuring that my work is related to the question's that the report is based on. Breaking big projects down into small manageable steps is very hard for me to do. I have a tough time dealing with ambiguity. I require structure and decisions to be taken for me, so that I know exactly what I'm doing step by step. I feel like I'm too indecisive to make my own choices about things. This causes me to procrastinate until somebody else decides for me. This is hard for my self-esteem, as I feel like I lack control over my own life. Another issue is trying to filter out irrelevant background noise. Hearing other people in the class having conversations, or hearing people from other classes through the walls has a serious impact on my ability to process information that is important to take in. I just can't filter out the noise. Repetitive noises such as sniffing, throat clearing or heavy breathing are especially difficult to deal with and can make me feel frustrated, stressed and angry.


At home I spend far too much time browsing and doing other random things on the computer when I know I should be doing more productive things. For example, I may need to wash the dishes, but rather than just getting up and doing them, I'll worry about it until something distracts me and I forget all about them. I tend to flick through channels a lot on the TV. I can't stand to watch adverts so end up turning the channel over, then forget to turn it back to what I was previously watching when the adverts have finished. I often misplace items such as my phone or my wallet, so I will go looking for them. Sometimes when I go through into another room to search for what I've lost, I forget what I went into the room for, or end up grabbing something else and not realizing that I still haven't found the lost item until I go back through to the room that I originally left. Sometimes I find myself frantically searching for things that are in my pocket the entire time! Finding the motivation to get out of the house can be very difficult. Usually when I do go out, there isn't really a plan on what I'm going to be doing, I just seem to make it up as I go along. I've tried to write lists of tasks that need to be done. But it can take quite a long time to construct a list together as my mind seems to go blank when I try to think of all the different things that I need to do. There's then the issue of sticking to the list and not allowing myself to be distracted by other things. I have no regular sleep routine. I go through phases where I get very little sleep at night because I feel like there is too much going on inside my head and I can't seem to clear my mind long enough to fall asleep, when this happens I'm usually feeling a lot of stress and anxiety. Other times I feel like sleeping all day, probably to catch up on the lost sleep, during this period I feel depressed and unmotivated to do things.


I feel like my social life is almost non-existent. I don't have any friends that I hang out with. Because I tend to zone out of conversations, particularly when they involve multiple people, I tend to misread what is being said, or what is going on, this causes me to say or do things that may not be appropriate for the situation. I think people pick up on this and are put off being around me as a result. I've always had a short fuse and get worked up about things easily, I think people are worried that I'm going to act aggressively towards them whenever I have a meltdown. I was excluded from high school on a couple of different occasions for completely losing my temper and destroying school property and getting into fights. I avoid these type of situations now as an adult by simply walking out of the classroom and going somewhere quiet where I can calm down. I've never been involved in more serious relationships either, as I worry about how I would treat my partner in stressful situations and would rather avoid this possibility altogether. I want to learn to drive, but I'm far too concerned about my ability to concentrate on the road as there appears to be far too many distractions.

School/High School

I always felt that I was different from other children/teenagers, but at the same time I never really wanted to accept it. I had a difficult time making friends and seemed to be an easy target for bullies, even although I usually fought back. Although my teachers never really had many negative things to say about me, I always felt as if I was underachieving. Despite having an IQ that falls into the superior range of intelligence, I left high school with low to average grades. I always felt that if I had tried harder and applied myself better, then I would have left with much better grades and opportunities. I found it difficult to produce a high standard of work as I was mostly in classes with students who had behavioral difficulties and this was very distracting for me. The only class where I felt I applied myself "ok", was mathematics. I really enjoy Maths and find the subject really engaging. I find I can concentrate much better when I feel engaged in what I'm doing. On the flip side, concentrating in subjects that I had difficulty developing an interest in proved to be near impossible at times. But my teachers were never too concerned about the quality of my work, because they liked the fact that I was quiet most of the time and kept to myself. This caused them to hold me in higher regard to that of my peers with behavioral challenges.


Since around the age of 15 or 16 I've had an issue with compulsive gambling. Although it has never gotten me into any serious debt, it leaves me short when I require money for things. I don't feel like I play to win, but rather I'm addicted to the way it makes me feel. Even when I win money, I know it's going straight back in again. Far more often than not, I don't walk away until I have nothing left. I've been in denial about this addiction since it all began. I convinced myself that I could stop at any time, but this has never happened.

Another addiction that I've developed since starting my high school days has been with Caffeine. Caffeine is only considered a mild stimulant. However, for somebody like me, I find it highly addictive. This is because of the way in which caffeine makes me feel and how I feel it can aid me in times when I need to get started on a task, or focus for extended periods of time. I find that it helps to clear some of the cobwebs in my mind and allows me to process information just that little bit easier. Although long term projects that require a great deal of planning are still an issue, even with the help of Caffeine.

I've had some minor on and off addictions with alcohol and nicotine but neither have had a severe impact on my life as of yet. I actually seem to have an intolerance to alcohol which severely limits my intake.

The reason I mention these things is because I know that "self medicating" is a common thing with undiagnosed ADHD and think I may have been self medicating all of these years. I also feel that i've done well to stay clear of any illegal substance abuse. (Although the opportunity has never really presented itself)


I've had a difficult time coming to terms with my Autism and my Dyspraxia. The possibility of having ADHD is also difficult for me to come to terms with. When I have a bad day, I'm convinced that I have it. But then I'll have days that don't seem nearly as bad, then this causes me to doubt the possibility. But I can't tell if I have reason to doubt it, or if I'm being in denial. I'm used to my parents telling me that I just need to get my act together and give myself a good shake. I think this has a lot to do with it. I'm told to "try harder", but finding the effort to do so feels like such an overwhelmingly impossible task, like most things in my life. :doh:

I'm not sure if what i've wrote is any good or just complete garbage. :scratch:
I just opened up wordpad and started typing things as they came into my mind. (It doesn't happen very often!).

I know that it drags on a fair bit, so if anybody has any suggestions on what I should remove or change, i'd appreciate it a lot!

02-04-17, 01:32 AM
It looks good. You did a nice job of breaking everything down.

02-04-17, 04:12 AM
It looks good. You did a nice job of breaking everything down.

Thanks. I didn't actually break it down though, it just kind of happened spontaneously as I was typing. I had quite a lot of strong coffee yesterday, so not sure if that helped me along the way. :lol:

02-04-17, 04:28 AM
It's great. Are you going to print it our to hrlp you remember? You could even give it to the psychiatrist. Maybe you could produce am easy to read version with bullet points thst you xsn easily use tp jog your memory during your appintment.

02-04-17, 04:45 AM
Think i'm going to need to print it out. There's no way i'm remembering all of that! :eek:

02-04-17, 04:55 AM
Yep best to print it out, Fraser and let them read it :) :grouphug:

02-04-17, 05:02 AM
You see.... now that I managed to type all of that stuff without getting distracted.... i'm now doubting it again..... why does this happen? :(

02-04-17, 06:33 AM
Print it out..... you know that you won't remember all of it and the stress of the assessment is likely to throw your memory. If this happened it may kick you into a bout of depression and beating yourself up.

Printing this and taking it in is part of you developing coping strategies.... it's smart and it suits YOU.

Best wishes


PS.. re the lectures.... I got that too.... in some lectures where I knew the lecture(r) was going to be particularly difficult to follow I took in a small dictaphone so I could record the lecture. On field trips I would use it instead of note-taking

As well as this I revamped my note-taking to a sort of mind map thing....which I would use to "reconstruct" the lecture into something I could use for revision later. Since it wasn't linear it didn't matter if I zoned in and out and I could fill in the blanks later.

RE the socialising.... I do one to one... I know I don't do groups. If Im in a group I accept that it's not my strength and concentrate on being present, but not being too ADDery. I also find I do best with people on the spectrum.... I know this so I don't beat myself up when I don't connect to NT's...... it's all about knowing yourself and not beating oneself up.

02-04-17, 07:24 AM
You see.... now that I managed to type all of that stuff without getting distracted.... i'm now doubting it again..... why does this happen? :(

Fraser this throws me as well. Why can I focus when the motivation is strong enough? Does this mean I'm just unmotivated aka lazy?

The reason is that there is nothing wrong with the r functions required to focus. What's wrong is the mechanism that makes us focus. It's like a car that works perfectly fine except for the ignition. If the ignition fires the car runs. If the ignition does not fire thr car is useless.

We can focus but only I'm very specific situation when the reward or immediate consequences are strong enough. Normal people cam focus I'm the absence of immediate consequences. They can go us for a reward that lies well in the future.

They can intrinsically generate enough motivation when they want to (at least they are much better at it than we are)

02-04-17, 07:31 AM
Yeah, I feel like i'm constantly driven by anxiety. I can't get through long difficult projects until I feel anxious enough to do them (usually at the last minute!). I've never been able to justify it to myself.

02-04-17, 02:44 PM
In writing that, you've done well for yourself, Fraser, full stop.

I think it's perfect as it is.


02-04-17, 04:05 PM
People (even people with ADHD, who might know better) often misunderstand the relationship between motivation and action. The error is in assuming that the two are connected in a cause & effect relationship; they aren't, not at all, not for anyone.

Unfortunately, it can seem as if they are, especially to anyone who has average brain function and who usually doesn't attempt anything that's outside their capability - or even outside their comfort zone.

Motivation works when you're both capable and prepared, but you're unsure or low on energy.

If you're not capable or not prepared, motivation is like lighting a fire under your house to encourage it to stand up and walk - destructive and unhelpful.