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Old 01-03-13, 07:13 AM
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Minimising the real struggles

I have a friend at work who said today that his doctor is going to get him tested for 'mild ADD'. He reckons he fits some of the signs and symptoms and that it would explain a lack of ability to concentrate!

I tried to explain that ADHD is more than just a set of signs and symptoms. It affects every aspect of your being, and undiagnosed it shows in your work and the way you behave and relate to people. He said that he thinks he's only mild.

This guy does not have ADHD. There are a couple of others at work who are undiagnosed but he is not one of them.

He knows of the real difficulties I have to deal with because of the ADHD and to go around saying that he has it just coz he can't concentrate just makes me feel like he's trivialising the a real disability with baseless speculation and flippant comments. People do have an understanding of my ADHD where I am and I would hate to have the credibility of ADHD diminished coz someone without ADHD is claiming that they have it.

He's not one to fake a diagnosis to get drugs or anything but I think in this case it is a complete lack of understanding of what the condition is about and how much of a real disability it is and how damn hard it is to overcome it to the point of being able to hold down a job (only with meds).

It just really p*sses me off that people read the diagnostic criteria and decide that they loosely fit it when they do not have any difficulties or disability. He is in no way shape or form hyperactive, impulsive or inattentive. He simply says he has trouble focusing so that must mean he has ADHD!!!!! And then brushes it off by saying it's 'mild'.

There is a real reason why he can't concentrate. He is seriously physically ill, cannot eat any solid food due to a stomach operation and is in constant pain from a knee operation. Most people would not be able to concentrate under those circumstances.

In my opinion you are ADHD or you are not ADHD. An inability to concentrate should not even be considered for a diagnosis of ADHD especially where there are other extremely good reasons to explain this.

This is a lifelong real condition with real difficulties and disabilities and it really p*sses me off that it gets thrown about when someone simply can't concentrate. ADHD is not a f***ing excuse for every NT's to use when their performance isn't up to standard. This is not a f***ing excuse. This is real. What the f*** is wrong with some doctors???

If he actually gets given a diagnosis of ADHD I worry that people will tar me with the same brush. I try. I really try and I take responsibility for myself. I acknowledge my shortcomings and I don't try to blame it on my ADHD. But I know what this guy is like. If he gets diagnosed it will be a f***ing excuse for everything and undo the progress I've made it getting people to understand what ADHD is really like and how far I've come.

I can't believe a doctor would refer for a dx of ADHD simply based on a lack of ability to concentrate when there is NO impulsivity, NO hyperactivity and NO inattentiveness!!!!!!

Sorry for the rant I'm just really mad.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:19 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

I can totally relate to your gripe!!!

Im so tired of people not getting how this thing ADD can mess up lives...

Its about processing the world around you...

But maybe hes embarrassed to admit bigger problems....

This is my week of realizing hyper focus has caused me to blow so many things... bums me out...

but i didint know I was doing it...

thats the hard part .. ADD is a hyper active ..yet slow brain..ugh

Im grateful Im not a serious brain injury person.. gotta be grateful.. gotta feel good..so Ill just deal with it
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Old 01-03-13, 07:21 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

Mild adhd? Is that like mildly pregnant? I don't know how you controlled yourself and kept yourself from kicking him in the n*ts.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:35 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

I don't want to just contradict you about this, but here goes.

ADHD really is, so far, just a set of signs and symptoms. There is no way to show you have ADHD except that you have x number of things on the list. And if you are showing enough things on that list of symptoms, then yes you do have ADHD because that list is the only definition that exists. There are tons of extra things that you and I could probably find that we have in common that this man does not, but they are not part of the official definition.

Other than that - well, some doctors don't know, or they might do things for the wrong reasons. I agree it sounds like the guy doesn't have ADHD.

Anybody who "tars you with the same brush" was going to do it anyway. This other man's diagnosis (or not) is not going to make silly people change their minds about anything.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:42 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

I met up with some good friends in the UK over xmas and they all tried telling me I didnīt have adhd and that everyone has my symptoms and it took a long while for them to start understanding my issues. 4 bottles of wine and 4 hours talking for me to explain that NTīs do have many adhd symptoms but not all of them together and not concentrating is one that millions of people have but that doesnīt mean adhd.

Personally I found that not concentrating was a symptom that was "hidden" in both me and my daughter because we didnīt know we couldnīt concentrate until we were treated and then we could. My brain has always worked in a certain way so I had no idea that it wasnīt the correct way and that other ways were possible. I didnīt know that the reason I couldnīt remember stuff or understand simple things or follow a story, book or film was because I couldnīt pay enough attention and that my mind was thinking 10 steps ahead instead of concentrating on the moment.

By the end of the evening my friends were starting to understand as I was able to cite examples like, every time they talk about someone from the past my first question is always "Did I know them"? and they always laugh and say "yeah youīre the one that gave them their nickname". I gave examples of my inappropriate remarks in the past which they were all witness to and reminded them of how I used to fake interest and knowledge when talking to my boss about clients when I really had no clue. They just thought that was my personality and of course, so did I.

So if he is a friend then talk to him and explain what adhd really is and he may just start to understand.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:49 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

Quote:
Originally Posted by dvdnvwls View Post
I don't want to just contradict you about this, but here goes.

ADHD really is, so far, just a set of signs and symptoms. There is no way to show you have ADHD except that you have x number of things on the list. And if you are showing enough things on that list of symptoms, then yes you do have ADHD because that list is the only definition that exists. There are tons of extra things that you and I could probably find that we have in common that this man does not, but they are not part of the official definition.
Actually there has to be real impairments which a lot of people seem to overlook.

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Originally Posted by dvdnvwls View Post
Other than that - well, some doctors don't know, or they might do things for the wrong reasons. I agree it sounds like the guy doesn't have ADHD.
He's just looking for an excuse coz he's about to be put on performance management. That's what worries me coz he'll use it as an excuse.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dvdnvwls View Post
Anybody who "tars you with the same brush" was going to do it anyway. This other man's diagnosis (or not) is not going to make silly people change their minds about anything.
That's true. Thanks for this.

I can only hope if he starts trotting out pathetic excuses that they hold him up to the standards that I perform to as someone in the workforce trying really hard to cope with ADHD.

The managers are really good with me and help me a lot to manage it. They actually help put things in place to help me cope and learn how to manage difficult situations so that eventually I can do it on my own. They know they need to pull me up sometimes but they also know that I appreciate it coz I'd rather be told so I can fix it than be resented. And above all they know how much and how hard I try. I would just hate to have the general perception of people with ADHD tarred because of someone looking for an excuse.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:57 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

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Originally Posted by tudorose View Post
Actually there has to be real impairments which a lot of people seem to overlook.
They do overlook it, but the requirement that there be real impairments is in fact part of the list.
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Old 01-03-13, 07:58 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

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Originally Posted by SquarePeg View Post
I met up with some good friends in the UK over xmas and they all tried telling me I didnīt have adhd and that everyone has my symptoms and it took a long while for them to start understanding my issues. 4 bottles of wine and 4 hours talking for me to explain that NTīs do have many adhd symptoms but not all of them together and not concentrating is one that millions of people have but that doesnīt mean adhd.

Personally I found that not concentrating was a symptom that was "hidden" in both me and my daughter because we didnīt know we couldnīt concentrate until we were treated and then we could. My brain has always worked in a certain way so I had no idea that it wasnīt the correct way and that other ways were possible. I didnīt know that the reason I couldnīt remember stuff or understand simple things or follow a story, book or film was because I couldnīt pay enough attention and that my mind was thinking 10 steps ahead instead of concentrating on the moment.

By the end of the evening my friends were starting to understand as I was able to cite examples like, every time they talk about someone from the past my first question is always "Did I know them"? and they always laugh and say "yeah youīre the one that gave them their nickname". I gave examples of my inappropriate remarks in the past which they were all witness to and reminded them of how I used to fake interest and knowledge when talking to my boss about clients when I really had no clue. They just thought that was my personality and of course, so did I.

So if he is a friend then talk to him and explain what adhd really is and he may just start to understand.
I'm gonna try and talk to him. He needs to understand that this is not some 'mild' condition like a sore throat. He needs to understand that his is a lifelong disability with real consequences on one's life. It doesn't just show up at the age of forty without any evidence or real impairments before then.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:01 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

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I would just hate to have the general perception of people with ADHD tarred because of someone looking for an excuse.
Already happened long ago. Faking ADHD as an excuse is ancient and famous.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:06 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

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Already happened long ago. Faking ADHD as an excuse is ancient and famous.
It's a shame coz we've been really making progress in that area (in my part of the world anyway).

It's mostly accepted and acknowledged. It just doesn't help when people wanna pull this cr@p and give credibility to the 'it doesn't exist' movement.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:06 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

I can see why it's frustrating and annoying to those who suffer from severe ADHD. As far as I know though ADHD is a spectrum disorder so I guess you can have a mild form of ADHD. Where you are on the spectrum decides your level of impairment (along with environmental factors) and what and if treatment is warranted.

I've just been diagnosed with bipolar disorder II and I'm pretty sure that if I really am bipolar it's just mild as I haven't found it that impairing so far. I'm also pretty sure though that I fit somewhere on the bipolar spectrum and that treatment would probably help me.

From what I've read on the forums, if I really have ADHD, I think, it would be rather mild as well compared to many others on here though at times it still seems that I'm more impaired than others who have got a diagnosis.

I think, the fact that ADHD can be graded according to severity, means that there is less risk of minimising the very real struggles that come with moderate to severe ADHD. Otherwise, it would be a bit like categorising everyone who is visually impaired as blind, which I'm sure wouldn't help improve conditions for those who actually are blind and whose struggles and requirements are very different to those that have for example myopia.

I agree with DVD. Anyone who is in the habit of trivialising anyone's struggles would probably do so regardless of labels or categories.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:08 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

Reading this made me nearly cry out of frustration, hurt and anger. Especially since my entire life is a trail of wreckage and I can't get a diagnosis. Sometimes I get so desperate that I want to do something rash to get treated.

Maybe he has impairments you all at work can't see... who knows.... but that's right it's not some mild condition like a sore throat that you get after 40.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:21 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

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Originally Posted by Fuzzy12 View Post
I can see why it's frustrating and annoying to those who suffer from severe ADHD. As far as I know though ADHD is a spectrum disorder so I guess you can have a mild form of ADHD. Where you are on the spectrum decides your level of impairment (along with environmental factors) and what and if treatment is warranted.

I've just been diagnosed with bipolar disorder II and I'm pretty sure that if I really am bipolar it's just mild as I haven't found it that impairing so far. I'm also pretty sure though that I fit somewhere on the bipolar spectrum and that treatment would probably help me.

From what I've read on the forums, if I really have ADHD, I think, it would be rather mild as well compared to many others on here though at times it still seems that I'm more impaired than others who have got a diagnosis.

I think, the fact that ADHD can be graded according to severity, means that there is less risk of minimising the very real struggles that come with moderate to severe ADHD. Otherwise, it would be a bit like categorising everyone who is visually impaired as blind, which I'm sure wouldn't help improve conditions for those who actually are blind and whose struggles and requirements are very different to those that have for example myopia.

I agree with DVD. Anyone who is in the habit of trivialising anyone's struggles would probably do so regardless of labels or categories.
Fuzzy sorry to hear about the bipolar (((hugs))). Even if you are mild I see that as much more severe than having ADHD. I hope you will be okay.

I know this guy well. He really doesn't have any impairments. I really think he needs help coz he's not coping in that he can't get enough nutrition to fuel his body and mind and he's in severe pain but it unable to take painkillers. What he really needs is to be in a less stressful situation so he can physically recover. Then he'll be okay. He's in the wrong job which messes with most people.

Even though mild cases of ADHD may exist they don't suddenly show up at the age of 40 with no prior history of impairment.
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Old 01-03-13, 08:27 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

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Reading this made me nearly cry out of frustration, hurt and anger. Especially since my entire life is a trail of wreckage and I can't get a diagnosis. Sometimes I get so desperate that I want to do something rash to get treated.
You have a trail of wreckage. That's your history or 'paper trail' to investigate a diagnosis.

Your situation is not like his. From everything you say you have suffered with this your whole life. It hasn't just suddenly appeared.
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Old 01-03-13, 10:47 AM
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Re: Minimising the real struggles

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You have a trail of wreckage. That's your history or 'paper trail' to investigate a diagnosis.

Your situation is not like his. From everything you say you have suffered with this your whole life. It hasn't just suddenly appeared.
Yes, I don't have any of those teacher notes, report cards, detention slips.... up to medical records, different therapists, emails saying they'd never give me a recommendation because they don't want to put their reputation at risk.... with me. Of course calling me very talented, brilliant, saying I did excellent work blah blah BLAH. And here, they don't care. They'll just say I have a personality disorder. I don't even want to go into it. It's bureaucratic. God knows I've tried, every year of my adult life I've tried to fix what is wrong with me. It doesn't go away.

ADDF is dredging up alot of emotions right now. It's starting to hit me that every time I want to give up on life it's because of .... all this... I mean, they can medicate me into the ground for everything else but until the right thing is treated, it's going to be *****ed. Sorry for going on.
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