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Old 06-14-12, 12:12 PM
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Billybadass Billybadass is offline

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newbie (bit of a rant)

Spiderwebs span out as I attempt even this simple introduction as they always have. Who am I? What simple things should I relate here that matter to my future dialogue with all of you? Reaching out through the vast clouds of background information clouding my communication I am not sure. I am never sure. So mostly I answer this question with simple facts that may mean something to those interested and here are a few.

I am a new Father to a toddler and soon to be the Father of twins. (I am still trying to wrap my head around that one, let alone decide what to name them.) Mid thirties, balding, out of shape, a smoker, and mentally exhausted.

In this forum I will try to answer the question (Who am I?) in more detail. As a child I was considered a"high potential" high IQ, difficult to get along with kid who could never hold on long enough to get to the next achievement. Year after year all the way through 11th grade achievement tests pulled me forward even though grades were never good enough to promote me. Many good teachers said my problem must lie in the leftover angst from parents divorce at age 3 or perhaps some developmental problem that they had no idea how to handle. Secretly most believed I was just lazy. Though they would only say so out of annoyance and frustration. Sessions with psychologists were either hazy psychobabble that I could not connect with or cheering sessions after IQ tests.

Four prep schools kicked me out for lack of success combined with my annoying behavior and three public schools allowed me to sit in classes while I zoned out in books and clouds. I have had opportunities few people get, even in our country. I never graduated high school or got a GED but I was able to talk myself into 3 Community Colleges and 4 Universities even one in Ireland.

At 25 I decided the military was my only option and I entered a Special Operations Unit one year prior to 9/11. I broke through the ADHD clouds for a while and found that there were some things that I could do that set me apart. But just as I completed an incredibly difficult selection process and began work that made me feel vital. Stupid teenage mistakes made in an ADHD cloud of idiocy (minor in anyone's book) made my superiors wary of my involvement. I was replaced. A short time later my team jumped into a foreign country without me.

My shame has forever been compounded by the fact that close friends are dead and I did not stand with them in battle. Mission after mission I sat and waited for authorization to rejoin my team. For two years I performed menial clerk duties while my brothers came home with wounds, honor, and mustard stains. I tried again to regain my status but my efforts were clouded by ADHD and I did not understand the need to simplify my world. I had my moments. But they were far two short.

Four men I trained closely with for years are dead, one is now a child who can not tie his boots, one lost his left arm, countless others wounded. It rips at my soul. Those men were good at their job and I do not mean to diminish them. (Had the talent I hold a for brief moments in time been engaged on that rooftop in Faluja speaking to the 50 Sunni's that killed my one friend I would have found a way out for us.) We must see though the clouds of our disorder and engage the world with passion. Even if you can not imagine such a moment in your life I promise you that at some point in your life the lives of our loved ones depend on it.

In truth of fact I have given up many times. Though until later in life I never consciously "gave up". My focus, habit, and ability to work on one thing or another simply dissolved around me. This still happens to me though these days my utter shame at facing others exaggerates the behavior and often keeps me from rejoining the effort, even when it will be destructive to my life. This strong emotional response to loss of face began in middle school but I did not identify it as a distinct pattern until my mid thirties, when after a 5 year run of success I again attempted University and failed.

At thirty I found espresso. No longer did I have to struggle for days to learn test material or write a twenty page paper. I could do it all in a night. (Don't stop though. All will be lost). This helped in short bursts but I could not sustain. Adderall seemed to help for a few years but now it is a necessity to engage at all. I continue to strive but I find fewer and fewer opportunities. I am an EMT and I have another job that is far more difficult. But I have a hard time with the daily comments from people who say "What are you doing here man?" and think (How did you fall so far?)

I must maintain a foundation for my family and I am still a "believer", but the tears come to me unbidden more and more often. (The thought that I have thrown it all away for lack of willpower.... and may even fail my children.)

My long rant here was inspired by the first post I read in this forum. A spiderweb of thoughts rolling out onto the page in a way I understood instantly in its similarity to my own writing style.... And one more thing for the patient reader! Sorry for the mistakes I don't edit very well.... Perhaps you didn't notice! If not then we are family.

Last edited by peripatetic; 06-14-12 at 03:49 PM.. Reason: added paragraks
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Old 06-14-12, 01:59 PM
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Re: newbie (bit of a rant)

Welcome to the Forum! I'm a newbie too (non-ADHD).

You said: "The thought that I have thrown it all away for lack of willpower..."

I don't think that's true. It's obvious to me that you've tried hard and harnessed your efforts to the best of your ability. It sounds like your ability was enhanced sometimes with assistance from espresso and Adderall. ADHD makes things more challenging for you to achieve but you still have achieved. That's impressive.

I hope you find support and camaraderie on these boards!
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Old 06-14-12, 03:58 PM
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ginniebean ginniebean is offline
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Re: newbie (bit of a rant)

welcome to the forum. Are you now on medication? If not, it'd be a good thing to do so.
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Old 06-15-12, 09:15 AM
lateralthinker lateralthinker is offline
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Re: newbie (bit of a rant)

I'm not a veteran, so I can't really comment on your close relations with your team - only those in the service can understand, all I can say is thank you for your service to our country.

On another note; things do happen for a reason. There's a reason that you didn't go over there, that you're not disabled or dead. I'm think that with a toddler and two twins on the way - you're needed at home. Your family needs you now and especially more and more in the future. You most certainly have regrets from your past, but there isn't much you can do to fix them - you can only move into the future. You also can't measure your success by your job. I'm sure everyone on this forum has fallen short of their potentials or taken a step back one way or another. I'm close to your age and have had my share of setbacks. I'm sure you've found out that struggle only gets harder with children.

My only advice is to keep following these forums - it's where my support comes from - family and friends can only carry you so far. Consider sitting down with a psychatrist and getting a diagnosis so you can get treated. It's not that much different from going to a doctor when you have the flu. When you make some progress in pinpointing the medical side of it, therapy definitely helps. Especially for those of us diagnosed and treated late in life, ADHD comes with its share of baggage that needs to be sorted out.

Last edited by lateralthinker; 06-15-12 at 09:17 AM.. Reason: spelling
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Old 06-15-12, 03:17 PM
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Re: newbie (bit of a rant)

Welcome. You seem to go for jobs that increase your natural dopamine (Special Ops, EMT) and I am sure you really thrive while you are "doing" it in a hands-on manner. It is when you get stuck behind a desk that your ADD starts to really bog you down. Does this match with your experience?

Come back and post some more. You can learn a lot here!
"I like work: it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours." Jerome K Jerome

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