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Old 04-14-19, 10:28 PM
Lost_in_a_fog Lost_in_a_fog is offline
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Unhappy I feel like a waste of space and a failure

A lot over 8 years ago I was diagnosed with ADHD predominantly inattentive type. I was 38 at the time and having a medical/psychological confirmation that I had a condition was a relief. I wish I could say things in my life have gotten better since then but they have not. I had gastric bypass surgery also 8 years ago and while I made great progress at first and regained much of my weight. 5 years ago I lost a job I had managed to bluff my way through holding on to for 17 years because my superiors were clueless, new guy came in that was not clueless and I was unceremoniously let go. Iím single, childless and basically friendless. I have a decent relationship with my elderly Mother, my relationship with my now deceased Father was strained. I have one older sibling and weíve never been close. He has 3 kids who I never got close to. Shortly after my ADHD diagnosis I tired medications but nothing really did much, maybe for a couple of weeks but that was it. I feel so low, my life is a pathetic mess. I have no hobbies because I have no ability to focus to finish or accomplish anything. My skill set is also next to nothing. I often wish I could just erase myself from existence. I donít even know where to start to dig myself out of this.
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Old 04-18-19, 11:33 AM
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Re: I feel like a waste of space and a failure

I am sorry you are feeling this way. Is there something specific you want advice or suggestions about? Maybe you can share more?
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Old 04-19-19, 03:27 AM
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Re: I feel like a waste of space and a failure

It's tough reading your post because your pain is clear and quite relatable. I have some advice which I think would be of help but first I'll describe my situation, hoping you can relate....
If I had to sum up my struggles over time with one word it would be stagnation. Not exactly sure what I want from life or how to get it but sure of one thing - I don't want this to be my life. I suppose I mean a failure to thrive or an inability to shape my own destiny and as a result, life tends to go by without much changing despite wanting to (and unsuccessfully trying to) escape a seemingly unshakeable, lingering sense of general malaise, apathy, and under-stimulation. I can't think of a better word to describe it than stagnation since it's like living in a sort of state of purgatory - not horribly depressed/frustrated but not happy/enthusiastic - nothing changes. It's a feeling that just seems to go on and on and the behavioral result (aka what an outsider would might view it as) is stagnation.

I often get the feeling that there needs to be an impetus for change (this kinda goes back to what I said about not being able to shape my own destiny). I feel like for many of us with an ADD/ADHD diagnosis, the "impetus" for change is addressed via medication. Like you said, you've tried medications and some worked but only for a limited time. I cannot overstate how discouraging that feeling is.... it's like you've been saved but it just doesn't seem to last and your natural homeostasis tends to adapt to the medication, undermine any progress you've made, and you're back where you were before. Ultimately, you feel helpless, develop feelings of inferiority, and the stagnation sets in. However, there are things that have helped me significantly....


So here is my practical advice (things that have helped me and things that haven't... keep in mind this my personal experience and everyone is different):


*anti-depressants don't really seem to help. apparently they are very helpful for major depression but when it comes to the chronic general malaise/discontent that builds up over years of an unsatisfying/unfulfilling life, they really don't do too much (ime).

*stimulant medication can help but is not a cure all (for me it is certainly better than nothing). Regular Adderall seems to help the most for me. Ritalin sucked. Vyvanse (i.e. the long acting, pro-drug Adderall) was either 1. not helpful at a lower dose or 2. gave me unproductive hyperfocus at a higher dose (there was never any middle ground that was helpful). So perhaps Adderall IR could be helpful so long as you and your doc work to get the proper dose and dosing schedule.

*regular exercise is crucial. For me, weight lifting is a life saver. Establishing a regular routine where you work out different muscle groups and expend physical energy is crucial for boosting your mood, increasing your focus, and improving your sleep (which leads to my next point...)

*quality sleep is crucial. Taking sedatives to force yourself asleep only leads to decreased sleep quality which means waking up the next day in a zombie-like fog. The best way to naturally fall asleep quickly & have quality sleep is by busting your *** working out physically on a daily basis. I always wake up feeling well rested after a great workout. In addition, the self-esteem boost from being fit and not looking like the Pillsbury Doughboy doesn't hurt either

*have a daily routine. Larry David (a hero of mine) once said in an interview that his father told him when he was a kid that when you wake up you need to have some place to go/something to do. nothing is worse than waking up and having no pressing tasks to complete (ex: getting ready for/going to work; having a list of important errands outside the house that need to be done). I know you said you lost your job but make sure you get back out there ASAP so you aren't just waking up at any hour only to sit in front of the computer as the day goes by.



This all may seem quite generic and you may feel like this is stuff you've tried without experiencing lasting benefit but all things combined contribute to a healthy lifestyle and everything tends to snowball in a positive way (rather than the negative snowball effect that comes with stagnation). If you think you need help with these issues outside of meeting with a psychiatrist/therapist then consider a "life coach" - someone who specializes in making sure you do the "practical stuff" (like the workout/sleep/job stuff I listed above), at least until you get into the routine and are doing it yourself.


>>>NOTE: I'm awake at 3:30am right now (contradicting my routine/good sleep advice) only because my friend called with a family issue. Being awake at this hour is already bothering me knowing that I'll be in a fog tomorrow<<<


If you have any questions, I'll definitely check this thread in the next couple days or so (since I can't recall all the things I'd want to convey at this time of night). Don't give into defeatism. You aren't a waste of space. Struggle and suffering is part of human existence, everyone experiences it to varying degrees. Struggle makes you a more compassionate, reflective, appreciative, and wise person (traits truly valued by everyone). Just make sure you don't accept a mentality of defeatism no matter how bad you think your situation is. Defeatism is poison.

Last edited by Optimist25; 04-19-19 at 03:48 AM..
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Old 04-19-19, 07:23 AM
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Re: I feel like a waste of space and a failure

I wanted to address some things that I can speak from the position of having had gastric bypass- but I agree with you so I am not trying to be contradictory.
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Originally Posted by Optimist25 View Post

*anti-depressants don't really seem to help. apparently they are very helpful for major depression but when it comes to the chronic general malaise/discontent that builds up over years of an unsatisfying/unfulfilling life, they really don't do too much (ime).
When you have gastric bypass all of your medications have to be adjusted in their dosing. I have a really good doc who is familiar with this. For example- I take 500mg of lamictal but after my GB I have to take it in 100mg increments. So I take 3 in the morning and two at night. Same thing with adderall. I have to take the extended release because the way I metabolize medications changed. When you have GB at least the roux-n-y I had they actually remove and re-route part of your instestines. So you process meds differently. I take adderall xr four times a day because of this.

Quote:
*stimulant medication can help but is not a cure all (for me it is certainly better than nothing). Regular Adderall seems to help the most for me. Ritalin sucked. Vyvanse (i.e. the long acting, pro-drug Adderall) was either 1. not helpful at a lower dose or 2. gave me unproductive hyperfocus at a higher dose (there was never any middle ground that was helpful). So perhaps Adderall IR could be helpful so long as you and your doc work to get the proper dose and dosing schedule.
I have a bias against vyvanse but when it comes to GB the extremely long lasting ones do not last as long as they are supposed to. So when I took vyvanse instead of it lasting 12 hours it lasted about 6 but re-dosing would keep me up all night.

Quote:
*regular exercise is crucial. For me, weight lifting is a life saver. Establishing a regular routine where you work out different muscle groups and expend physical energy is crucial for boosting your mood, increasing your focus, and improving your sleep (which leads to my next point...)
This is an excellent point. I am slacking in this regard. But exercise is good for your body, mind and mood.

Quote:
*quality sleep is crucial. Taking sedatives to force yourself asleep only leads to decreased sleep quality which means waking up the next day in a zombie-like fog. The best way to naturally fall asleep quickly & have quality sleep is by busting your *** working out physically on a daily basis. I always wake up feeling well rested after a great workout. In addition, the self-esteem boost from being fit and not looking like the Pillsbury Doughboy doesn't hurt either
I cant agree with you more on this. I used to take a ton of sedatives and benzos for sleep and anxiety. I am an alcoholic in recovery so its problematic for me to take them but I was always sleepy and doped up even after having a lot of hours of sleep. I have suffered with insomnia for a long time and I went through my own sleep training. I do not want too hijack the thread with what I do but I am very rigid about it. But since implementing the routine a few years ago I rarely have any issues.

Quote:
*have a daily routine. Larry David (a hero of mine) once said in an interview that his father told him when he was a kid that when you wake up you need to have some place to go/something to do. nothing is worse than waking up and having no pressing tasks to complete (ex: getting ready for/going to work; having a list of important errands outside the house that need to be done). I know you said you lost your job but make sure you get back out there ASAP so you aren't just waking up at any hour only to sit in front of the computer as the day goes by.
I struggle with this. I do know that getting dressed to my shoes helps prevent me from laying around and napping.
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Old 04-20-19, 08:13 PM
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Re: I feel like a waste of space and a failure

Optimist25, thank you for that! I'm not even the OP, but I really needed to read that today. OP, what he said was really sound advice. It's not everything, but it's a good place to start.
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Old 04-21-19, 01:04 AM
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Re: I feel like a waste of space and a failure

Quote:
Originally Posted by Optimist25 View Post
If I had to sum up my struggles over time with one word it would be stagnation. Not exactly sure what I want from life or how to get it but sure of one thing - I don't want this to be my life. I suppose I mean a failure to thrive or an inability to shape my own destiny and as a result, life tends to go by without much changing despite wanting to (and unsuccessfully trying to) escape a seemingly unshakeable, lingering sense of general malaise, apathy, and under-stimulation. I can't think of a better word to describe it than stagnation since it's like living in a sort of state of purgatory - not horribly depressed/frustrated but not happy/enthusiastic - nothing changes. It's a feeling that just seems to go on and on and the behavioral result (aka what an outsider would might view it as) is stagnation.
Holy heck this just described EXTREMELY well what I go through! Exactly where I'm at in my life right now! Something I've been struggling with pretty heavily with for the last few months.

Thank you so much for putting this into such relatable, understandable words! It's been very difficult to try and describe this. You just did so, so elegantly!
I love that word...stagnation. Absolutely!
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