Hi peeps. Just hoped for some selfish (on my part) advice from you people who are somewhat familiar with the area. I'm not looking for an internet diagnosis as such, just a general opinion on the likelihood of the symptoms matching. This comes after several+ people have independently asked me if I'm ADD.
At 21 years of age, I have just failed my 3rd semester of uni. I can continue making excuses, but every time I start with good intentions, I make up excuses such as "this course isn't relevant. i want to do something else". I often daze out/ daydream / fall asleep in lectures or find myself doodling all over the pages. This is no different to high school in which I did horrible and blamed it successfully on the "useless repetition" of the syllabus. Primary school I would never get the work done but still managed to "know the work" well enough (thanks to an accelerated class), and had the fortunate excuse of frequent illness to explain away my missing homework. I really do try to fix this. I have done meditation, i have signed my own goal contracts etc and exercised, eaten well. It works great for two weeks. Sometimes three. And then ****, it's back onto the rollercoaster (mostly involves drinking).
As egotistical as it might sound, most people I know think I'm the "craziest person they know". Others who I know less well or whom i'm sober around think I'm the quietest. I either don't talk or don't stop talking. My longest relationship has been 4 weeks. All 3 of them have ended the same way .. drifting apart. It's not that I get bored with them, but I know I probably act that way.
One of my main concerns are the thoughts I can't block. Whether it be in a car (passenger, I tried driving once but it was terrible so I let the learners licence expire and am now happy to walk), I have strong visualisations of the car swerving into a rock ; or just recurring violent/suicidal images/feelings of action that don't even always match my mood (i'm not a violent person). Sometimes it comes down to paranoia, hearing negative thoughts from conversations nearby. I can now recognise that these thoughts are delusional, but it doesn't stop them.
Finally my substance abuse is out of control. Whatever I can find, I will take, including herbal sleeping tablets. Coffee does chill me out but I do find I get sleepy. Tea is great after exercise. Pot and alcohol have definitely contributed to the later paranoid feelings I am getting. They are not the cause, but have certainly exacerbated the problem. And despite not feeling any physical need for it, I keep falling back into it, especially alcohol. Alcohol is the one consistent thing I have kept up in my life. Reinforced by the fact that I am an energetic drunk (albeit one eye open at most times) who is said to be funny / crazy when on the **** -- and I often get in trouble or do some of the weirdest stuff or frequently find myself hours later half a city away following a star consellation or a bridge or the way to the water -- i get social benefit from it, hence drinking is paradoxically the best and worst thing going for me right now.
In conversations I often feel like i'm passively listening. I will often respond generically to cover up the fact that I have no clue what someone's just been saying. In larger groups, communication is often near impossible. When I played in the band, I found it near impossible to start at the right time in pieces of music. Solo playing was fine until there was accompaniment. It wasn't that I couldn't count the beat, but there was always a delay of some sort; a hesitation or perhaps that blasted neuron was taking a **** at the wrong time. I spent a year in a band more or less just mouthing the notes, letting the others cover up for my fraud :P
The things that make me doubt it ADD are this:
1- Anxiety plays a main part in my life. I have mild panic attacks when asked to speak in class /public, that usually involves the awkward red sweating and inability to finish sentences (sentences are seldom finished where I come from).
2. I don't seem to have a significant problem forgetting basic thoughts. Whilst I avoid high-order puzzles or big tasks, things like forgetting where I put my keys aren't particularly bad. I generally remember appointments or am at least organised enough to write them down.
3. Yes I have authority problems and generally break social convention, but I usually obey rules and laws (when sober), if only for fear of retribution or disapproval, and I was never the sort to interrupt class (too busy sleeping ) .
4. While I had focus problems during primary school, they were not nearly so bad as from approx year 7 onwards (although this was moving from a very laterally progressive accelerated primary class to a traditional vertical learning approach in high school).
Arghh I was hoping to type a little more coherently today. I hate just how narcissistic it feels to ask for help, but I suppose it's really come to the point where I need to realise a future. In primary school I always thought the world would end come year 8 or 9. By year 10 - 12 I thought I'd probably end it myself (not the world), and since then it's just been a hodgepodge of life "experiences" where the thought of life past 30 was never really considered or was at best a flailing thought. A self-destructive ignorance for the future.
*phew*> All typed, if you read this, thanks and sorry If you respond, thanks again .. and sorry
I think I'm looking for group identity. It's fun to be different, but not in isolation.
I am not an expert, although I am a SW. I would first say you need to get some professional help. Alsp you need to quit the booze and any drugs. They are destroying your life.Re read your post and see if you don't agree. Booze and drugs eat away at who you really are.
You seem to be an intelligent soul who is veering off track. Please get some help before it is too late for you...
Rambucket! seriously, you need to quit the booze and drugs!
at least you'd know for sure how your mind works on its own.
if you are having trouble quitting alcohol and drugs, and are consuming them way more than you should, then you need to consider something like AA as you might have developed a dependency problem. it's just not right when the only way you can enjoy yourself is through dozing off or getting stoned.
you're only 21. i'm 20 years old and i understand what you mean about wanting to end it all.. not seeing yourself living up to 30. i still am surprised i reached 20! but that's not right either. (another thing is i don't drive either for the same reason. also due to the fact that my sleep pattern is messed up and i don't want to kill someone while driving after being awake for 24+ hours)
first thing's first, stay away from anything that changes your state of mind (i.e., drugs and alcohol). then after a couple of weeks, go see a doctor and tell her/him what you've been going through. it's really really tough opening up especially at first, but don't do it unless you feel comfortable with the doctor. if you don't, then change the doctor and start new. make sure you be as honest as possible, and convnce her/him (indirectly) that you need to see a psychiatrist/psychologist to assess and evaluate your symptoms.
you are youthful, and you seem like a bright, fun, and an amazing guy who does not see his potential. you are a troubled young man. you need help and going through this alone will only lead to tragic ends.
i want to see you post again. please keep us posted and let us, or at least me, know how you are doing. don't hesitate to write again. feel comfortable. we are not here to judge. we're here to share our troubles and joys, lending support and getting support.
you can't call yourself selfish yet. we are all hear to get help and hear opinions from others. you evidently only have 1 post, so that's just one side of the coin.
come back and give some support to someone who needs it so you won't feel selfish. a simple line or two does it even though you might not realize it.
the reason you posted here is because you realized something is wrong, you're life isn't going well, you failed 3 semesters so far, and you just don't want to feel so empty, confused, and unsettled anymore.
I think I'm looking for group identity. It's fun to be different, but not in isolation.
(that's so true!)
I'm glad you reached out to us at least and commend you for realizing the horrible pattern you've been going through.
stick around and do your best to get through this because you truly, seriously, can.
Thank you so much to both of you for your replies and advice! It really really really has been much appreciated
I saw a counselor today, although I'm a little concerned about their general .. competency. Within a minute of talking they asked me if I had a "life disorder" . Granted I had destroyed a plastic cup like a serial killer and requested to be referred to as "Student Warrior" on the form She was more awkward then me and if she wasn't so old I would think she was a first year student on work experience. She initially told me to quit uni (which I thought was a bit forward coming after 5 minutes conversation). She repeatedly asked if I had a learning disorder or deficit (I did not lean this way with the conversation. I don't want to influence any diagnosis : There may be comfort in one, but I want it to be right).
But I have been moved on to/referred to a psychiatrist and hopefully there will be progress. I definitely have reached the breaking point here and now, but I'm hoping come monday, perhaps there might be light.
Substance abuse is certainly an issue, but I am positive it is an effect of something, not a cause. I have had periodic months+ of abstinence with great initial progress, but inevitably always led back to the same causes for returning. I'm positive the drinking stems from self-esteem/anxiety/social issues.
Oh and para, if you're not already, please become a counselor/social worker/psychoprofessional You have a very friendly informative vibe, that could really help a lot of people. One of the reasons I feel selfish about this is that clearly a lot of people out there are suffering some serious ordeals, something ugly that modern society is manifesting
Rambucket, i'm so glad you've posted again. nice to know that you're still around
Its great that you went to see a counsellor, but not so great, however, that you've had such a negative (first?) experience with one. (but you are pretty funny and i honeslty just had to laugh because i, strangely, went through pretty much the same thing (see my first thread) and it feels good to know that you've atleast done something about it immediately. i wish i had actually expressed my anger towards them as you did because i just felt cheated and horrible. so, your dissapointments are justifiable!
concerning questioning their competency I know what you mean ...we shouldn't have to! I, like i said, felt like doing exactly what you did because it's not just dissapointing, but also really demeaning. college/university counsellors in my experience arn't the best counsellor's to see. they are really just counsellors and i think what you need is a person who actually knows what they're dealing with. it's a good thing you're referred to a psychiatrist.
you know, you have a pretty good idea of how and what you feel and think, as well as what you are going through. this helps a lot when speaking to a psychologist because it helps with the diagnosis. and the best part is that you really want to know the truth rather than just be diagnosed for something. that's great. actually it's what psychologists/psychiatrists would rather deal with. it seems that if you come in with a certain suspicion in mind and you let them know of what you think your case might be, the diagnosis usually becomes biased. either they focus on that particular diagnosis unintentionally, or go as far away from it as possible to inentionally disagree with you.
I think you really are doing the right thing, especially when you seek the help because when you do, it means that you know that you are worth the "trouble"
and one more thing Rambucket, thank you for your kind words. when i read them they made my day. I'm really glad I could help in any way. and with regards to feeling selfish because other people maybe going through something "worse".. that's pretty normal. but just because one problem is bigger than the other, it does not negate the fact that the "smaller" problem is a problem. I hope that made sense. basically, all problems should be solved. just because someone else's problem may be bigger than yours does not mean that you shouldn't have the right to seek help for the problems that you are facing.
well, I'll stop here for now and wish you good luck with the appointment today!
Your original post was interesting. I was expelled from nursery school, so I am the ADD one in our family. My son is disabled with bipolar disorder. In the last few years, medicine has recognized the over lap of ADD and bipolar disorder. The latter is a cyclical mood disorder with serious ups and downs and normal periods in between. It is often accompanied by anxiety. ADD is not a mood disorder, there are no cyclical mood swings from depression to manic behavior. I am glad that you have been referred to a psychiatrist because he/she will be able to differentiate between the two disorders and get you help.
The good news is that both are treatable. Of the two, ADD is the one to have. I am 66, still take some ADD medications, and have had a good life, even if I cut the braids off the girl in second grade who sat in front of me. The nun who taught that class refused to ever teach again. (It's humorous to talk about it now, but I am sure the girl was traumatized.) I got the equilivant of ritalin in college and my grades shot through the roof. I learned to study. and took medication as I felt I needed therm from then on. It helped greatly in social conversations, I finally listened to others. And it helped too when working out. I could stay focused enough to do it.
When I read your post I got concerned about your anxiety, and I am sure the psychiatrist will focus on that. There is help there too.
So, my friend, your life is about to change. And you will love the new you.
it was nice reading your post michael178, and it is actually true that the comorbidity between ADD and bipolar is very, verry high. it's nice to bring it up just as a fact, but i personally don't see characteristics of a mood disorder with Rambucket as much as I see anxiety. Anxiety and ADD usually show up together, along with daydreaming and zoning out...
And Rambucket, where are you?? Tell us how have you been?? did you go to a psych appointment and if you did, how did it go?
hope all is well with you
Last edited by paranormal; 03-20-2007 at 08:41 PM.
I have so much respect for the people I know who have struggled through Bipolar and still maintained a productive and empathic life. It's not easy, but certainly a struggle worth pursuing. I know several friends who have had it, and they all seem to be very resilient people underneath. It makes me very angry when people think that people with bipolar can just "grow out of it" on their own.
I don't believe bipolar is something eating me, though I thank for your further replies. I dropped the uni person who was going to refer me to someone, and took my mothers recommendation for a clinical psychologist she knew (she's always been anti meds, despite unbeknownst to me til now, recommendations from doctors). But as far as ongoing referrals go, it sounds like I'll be hitting up the Drugs and Alcohol centre next. So far it feels like I've explained more than I care to, to people I see once and then to the next. Dropped uni. Stayed indoors for days. This procedure is an absolute mess (not just of skills, but bureaucracy). Simply explaining the situation is not just a drain, but an eye opener sometimes. Sometimes bottling up emotions keeps them from yourself, not just others. But after a while of not being out there and not addressed, it just whirls around and consumes.
welcome back Rambucket, it's about time you replied I actually thought something might be wrong! glad to hear back from you.
for some reason, most times taking our mother's advice ends up being the best. I myself HATE drugs and would rather just get assessed and if i need it (and i do ) i might allow myself to see a psychologist for counselling.
so you dropped uni, as in, you don't go to classes anymore or are you only talking about that uni counsellor person? in any case, it's so important that you address the number one thing in your life: YOU.
if you did drop uni don't give in to the feeling of being a failure. i know people who had to take a year off because of a car accident they survived and they literally feel like a failure! in anycase, mental or physical illness, it's not at all your fault. i still try to convince myself of these things because some days i just can't see how i am not to blame.
Simply explaining the situation is not just a drain, but an eye opener sometimes. Sometimes bottling up emotions keeps them from yourself, not just others. But after a while of not being out there and not addressed, it just whirls around and consumes.
and i empathize with your sentiments here. every word, it is true. but i hate the fact that i may pour my heart out to a person i had just met, only to never benefit out of it other than gaining the knowledge that i should never see them again. hopefully that will not happen again to any of us.
you seem to be the creative type, and from the way you write, i think writing or journalling will help with releasing those emotions that are pent up inside of you. try writing anything, everyday, without thinking.
good luck with it all Rambucket. Keep posting, whether you've gone a few steps forward or back, we're here for support.