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Women with ADD/ADHD This forum is for women to discuss issues related to being a woman with AD/HD.

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Old 02-22-18, 08:47 AM
MissingINaction MissingINaction is offline
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Help....what should i do? Its out of control

I have never thought of adhd and eating disorders being related but maybe im wrong.
I was on adhd meds from when i was about 11 until i was 36. Somewhere around 36 years old, i decided that i was going to "train my brain" and not need medication anymore. My kids were being put on medication and had lots of appointments so i decided i needed to focus on getting them to their appointments and i didnt have time to fuss over my appointments. So i quit taking my adderall. So, here i am. Not only is my life a mess, my kids' lives are hectic(i never get them anywhere on time, i forget to get what they need, like i went to get my daughter valentine's day cards, i bought her a dress and forgot the cards, had to rush to the store to get the cards, took them to the school but the party was over), my husband says he doesnt hate me but he should. I cant even get to the grocery store right. I always end up going somewhere else. I went to the grocery store last week but he had to leave work early because i locked my keys in my trunk when loading the groceries into my car. AND TO TOP IT ALL OFF, ive gained over 100 pounds in les than 2 years! My doctor says its not my thytoid or anything. Its like i eat or no reason. I dont even know why. I just cant control it...its like i eat as a side note to everything, like i barely even notice im eating until im almost done.
My life is so crazy.
Plus, i tried to get in to see my old dr to get my meds back but the office said i gotta wait 3 months because im now considered a new patient because i havent been for so long. 3 months?!?! I cant make plans for 3months from now. I cant eve stick to a plan i make for today.
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Old 02-22-18, 01:34 PM
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Re: Help....what should i do? Its out of control

Sounds like you are in a frustrating and demoralizing place right now.

I'm gonna be a little ageist here ... and say I got diagnosed at 46 ... The way I see this, at 46, it was clear to me that life for everything is plain-out hard. People with perfect health .. .and resources and money ... their lives are still hard. I have several close friends who are very well off ... Both have serious and demoralizing struggles.

Plus I had struggled with depression ... I was pretty humbled by life ... and very realistic ... So when I got diagnosed and realized that yes, meds were helping me. Case closed. No need to doubt or second-guess this. In life, we need every advantage we can get ... and even great medical treatment probably doesn't full offset the disadvantage of ADHD.

I'm not sure why you felt you needed to go off the medications ... If you want to do that (and the medication has been helping you) you want to do so very very gradually. A woman I know decided to get off antidepressants ... she did it once over a few months and got depressed again and got back on the meds. A few years later, she decided to try to go off the meds again.

She took a year and a half this time ... to slowly, slowly decrease her dose ... giving her body and brain and her coping skills time to adjust. This time she didn't get depressed. A year and a half she took to wean off the meds!

I'm gonna say you might want to consider therapy ... One, you might be devaluing your own life ... why otherwise would you go off a med that is really helping you? ... And ... once you saw that you were struggling, why didn't you immediately call the doctor and or go to a therapist to figure out ways to make an adjustment?

Perhaps you let some kind of stigma about medication get in the way. But again this seems strange because you are seemingly fine with your children being on medication. So I'm back to there seems to be some way you don't value your own happiness and well being.

I had a problem like this ... one thing I had to learn to do was to react more quickly to misery and "failure" ... Now, my goal is to go public with my misery (and coping problems) as soon as possible--tell my therapist, tell my nurse practitioner, tell my friends--all part of an effort to get myself out of helpless denial.

The good news ... you can still turn around and go in a better direction. Probably doesn't feel that way right now, but you can ... and you can turn this experience into a powerful learning lesson.

Is there another doc you can go to who's available sooner than 3 months? You might wanna call the doc's office again, plead your case ... and ask them to put you on the list to be called in cases of cancellation. That may get you in sooner ... or again, find another doc.

Perhaps you can get an earlier appointment with your general doctor and tell that person of your struggles and about the 3-month waiting period ... and ask that person to prescribe meds for you--at least for three or so months. My family doc has happily filled in for me when I've been between psychiatrists.

Weight gain creates shame in our culture ... no doubt about it ... and many women unfortunately experience this shame acutely.

Yes ADHD (untreated) can lead to self-medicating ... in all kinds of ways. We substitute eating, smoking, drinking, pot-smoking, etc ... to calm our minds, occupy our minds if we are not being aggressively treated.

People with ADHD are also quite prone to addictions of all kinds. I'm constantly managing addictive tendencies, including addictive eating.

I would say get to therapy ... Don't settle for a mediocre person. You need someone who inspires and motivates you ... Someone you deeply trust, someone who "gets" you. And explore your thinking patterns ... and why --to use therapeutic language--you basically decided to sabotage yourself by going off meds without seemingly a compelling reason. And why were you slow to react when the evidence was clear that you were struggling?

You might have some old pattern of under-reacting to pain and problems. That can be a survival strategy when growing up ... pretending everything is all right. Ignoring pain and problems quickly breaks down as a survival strategy for adults.

Take some first steps. You can do it. You haven't killed anyone. You have some goals. You want a better life. And yes, you can lose the weight ... but you want to lose the weight in a healthy way ... and not hate yourself while you're doing so ... If you fully take care of yourself, it seems to me that weight loss will come ... Don't just try to randomly diet ... You have bigger issues ... tackle the issue of taking care of yourself and the weight loss will likely happen.

So sorry to hear of your struggles.

Tone
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Old 02-22-18, 02:26 PM
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Re: Help....what should i do? Its out of control

Thank you.
I guess since I had been on medication most of my life, i started taking it for granted. I didnt realize how much it was helping me until i no longer had it.
Plus, i had family members who doubted me, like they thought my adhd was too bad to go off meds, so i was kinda stuck on proving them wrong. I kept thinking i was going to be able to catch up and get ahead of it...obviously never happened.
And as far as my children being on medication, i hated the idea. But they were doing worse and worse in school and their doctor talked me into trying it, and it worked. Im not anti medication but i wanted to kee them off of it until they absolutely needed it...which happened much younger than i was predicting. I thought i could avoid it or delay it with sending them to therapy and so on. It didnt work.
I think i had been on medication for so long, i didnt realize how much i needed it. I was off medication during my pregnancies but i figured all of my symptoms were bc of the pregnancies.
I put myself on the list to be called in case a sooner appointment opens. I tried explaining to the secretary who answered the phone. Its not the same lady who worked here before. I know that if my doctor knew i had called, i feel like he would have been able to get me in sooner.
I have an appointment with my pcp next week. I hope i dont find some other distraction. I hope i dont forget or mess it up somehow. I havent seen that doctor for a couple of years,either.
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Old 02-22-18, 02:40 PM
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Re: Help....what should i do? Its out of control

Just for information, adhd kids medication has been approved of for kids as young as 4. Not saying those cases are frequent but they do happen. My son was diagnosed at age 3.5 and started meds at age 4 and it saved his life. He's 22 now. As far as you and meds... you need to value your own life and healthcare just as much as you value your children's healthcare, After all if mom isnt well how does she cope? And I believe addictions of all kinds are associated with adhd. I am addicted to nicotine, caffeine and I am an alcoholic(sober 5+ years). Did you know vyvanse as been approved for binge eating disorder. Now, I dislike vyvanse for many reasons but I dont know what makes it more suitable for eating disorders- I dont know the science behind it. IMO dexedrine is better and could just as easily work but like I said- I am not the doctor or scientist. I dont think you can wait three months. I would call back and tell them you cant wait so you will need your medical records. Maybe that will kickstart them but either way you can look for someone and have the records to prove you were being treated with adderall previously because some doctors are fussy about stimulants. Therapy would be good too- I was in therapy for 17 years. Probably a lot more going on than you but my point is a long term commitment of consistency with a therapist you like can go a long way.
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Old 02-22-18, 02:52 PM
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Re: Help....what should i do? Its out of control

Thank you.
Yes, i understand kids can go on meds at a young age. My daughter is on guanfacine and ritalin at 5. I didnt go on the stuff until i was about 11. For some reason, i guess i was believing all of the new hype. Everyone was talking about all of the different classes and therapies for her. They were wrong, all of these soccer moms and the like.
My son is 10 and on guanfacine and vyvanse but he has adhd and asd. He actually does much better than myself or daughter, as far as keeping track of everything and keeping a schedule.
I will call for my files to see if it will rush them along. Ive been calling all the other psychiatrists in my area. For new patients, the earliest i have found was for March 8th. Or 7th. I need to double check but i wrote it down.
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Old 02-22-18, 03:01 PM
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Re: Help....what should i do? Its out of control

Quote:
Originally Posted by ToneTone View Post
Sounds like you are in a frustrating and demoralizing place right now.

I'm gonna be a little ageist here ... and say I got diagnosed at 46 ... The way I see this, at 46, it was clear to me that life for everything is plain-out hard. People with perfect health .. .and resources and money ... their lives are still hard. I have several close friends who are very well off ... Both have serious and demoralizing struggles.

Plus I had struggled with depression ... I was pretty humbled by life ... and very realistic ... So when I got diagnosed and realized that yes, meds were helping me. Case closed. No need to doubt or second-guess this. In life, we need every advantage we can get ... and even great medical treatment probably doesn't full offset the disadvantage of ADHD.

I'm not sure why you felt you needed to go off the medications ... If you want to do that (and the medication has been helping you) you want to do so very very gradually. A woman I know decided to get off antidepressants ... she did it once over a few months and got depressed again and got back on the meds. A few years later, she decided to try to go off the meds again.

She took a year and a half this time ... to slowly, slowly decrease her dose ... giving her body and brain and her coping skills time to adjust. This time she didn't get depressed. A year and a half she took to wean off the meds!

I'm gonna say you might want to consider therapy ... One, you might be devaluing your own life ... why otherwise would you go off a med that is really helping you? ... And ... once you saw that you were struggling, why didn't you immediately call the doctor and or go to a therapist to figure out ways to make an adjustment?

Perhaps you let some kind of stigma about medication get in the way. But again this seems strange because you are seemingly fine with your children being on medication. So I'm back to there seems to be some way you don't value your own happiness and well being.

I had a problem like this ... one thing I had to learn to do was to react more quickly to misery and "failure" ... Now, my goal is to go public with my misery (and coping problems) as soon as possible--tell my therapist, tell my nurse practitioner, tell my friends--all part of an effort to get myself out of helpless denial.

The good news ... you can still turn around and go in a better direction. Probably doesn't feel that way right now, but you can ... and you can turn this experience into a powerful learning lesson.

Is there another doc you can go to who's available sooner than 3 months? You might wanna call the doc's office again, plead your case ... and ask them to put you on the list to be called in cases of cancellation. That may get you in sooner ... or again, find another doc.

Perhaps you can get an earlier appointment with your general doctor and tell that person of your struggles and about the 3-month waiting period ... and ask that person to prescribe meds for you--at least for three or so months. My family doc has happily filled in for me when I've been between psychiatrists.

Weight gain creates shame in our culture ... no doubt about it ... and many women unfortunately experience this shame acutely.

Yes ADHD (untreated) can lead to self-medicating ... in all kinds of ways. We substitute eating, smoking, drinking, pot-smoking, etc ... to calm our minds, occupy our minds if we are not being aggressively treated.

People with ADHD are also quite prone to addictions of all kinds. I'm constantly managing addictive tendencies, including addictive eating.

I would say get to therapy ... Don't settle for a mediocre person. You need someone who inspires and motivates you ... Someone you deeply trust, someone who "gets" you. And explore your thinking patterns ... and why --to use therapeutic language--you basically decided to sabotage yourself by going off meds without seemingly a compelling reason. And why were you slow to react when the evidence was clear that you were struggling?

You might have some old pattern of under-reacting to pain and problems. That can be a survival strategy when growing up ... pretending everything is all right. Ignoring pain and problems quickly breaks down as a survival strategy for adults.

Take some first steps. You can do it. You haven't killed anyone. You have some goals. You want a better life. And yes, you can lose the weight ... but you want to lose the weight in a healthy way ... and not hate yourself while you're doing so ... If you fully take care of yourself, it seems to me that weight loss will come ... Don't just try to randomly diet ... You have bigger issues ... tackle the issue of taking care of yourself and the weight loss will likely happen.

So sorry to hear of your struggles.

Tone
And yes, i FOR SURE have the problem of ignoring whats going on with myself.
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Old 02-22-18, 10:52 PM
ToneTone ToneTone is offline
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Re: Help....what should i do? Its out of control

Working on that habit of ignoring what's going on ... will pay off big time.

My stress level and shame level ... is so much lower these than when I ignored when I was struggling ...

One of the frustrations of ADHD is that it blocks us at times from thinking clearly ... something isn't right in our emotional regulation system ... and with our working memory ... We often can't call up the the relevant information when we most need it ... even though that information is in our brains ... So sharing with other people ... is one of my ways around this glitch in my brain. I get wonderful ideas from other people on how to think about my problems or how to address them. (Sometimes I learn that my problem isn't as big as I feared it was.)

BTW: you do know, I hope, that sometimes families ARE THE WORST possible people to share our struggles with ... You mentioned that you went off meds because your family had this view that your ADHD was so bad--and you wanted to prove them wrong.

All families have their blind spots ... If you have an issue that falls in a family's blind spot, they will NEVER understand. They can't understand. And you only become more agitated and demoralized trying to convince them. It's a completely hopeless task. For whatever reason sometimes an issue we have threatens the family's way of thinking, threatens the way our family sees the world.

The best option in this situation is to stop sharing with family (on the blind-spot issue) and instead go to therapists and friends and support groups ... coworkers ... anyone who can reasonably and open-mindedly think on the issue we're facing.

Great to hear you made the calls ... you can even bug the doctor's office again ... maybe they'll finally shut you up ... or a staffer will finally mention you to the doc and he'll find a place in his schedule for you sooner rather than later.

Posting here, by the way, was a great way to start opening up.

Keep posting.

Tone
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