I worked for one of the top nationally recognized engineers in the U.S. For some reason he was able to discern that I'm not half as stupid as I act. He is now retired. We are the best of friends. I love this guy. I sent him a message for some advise. Relevant part in blue below.
This guy is in your IQ class. I knew you weren't blowing smoke about your 140 whatever IQ because you and my buddy have got the same bad habbit - clarifying/defining my broad useless generalizations into meaningful info. His attentionn to detail is about the same as yours. Of course, this case "bad" means "good."
As I mentioned a few billion times I have ADHD. Because everyone has trouble concentrating from time to time, many people think ADHD is a fake disorder. My defense is simple. Anyone who thinks ADHD is a “fake” doesn’t have it.
I too thought ADHD was “fake” but for somewhat different reasons. I can at times be very focused. So I never suspected ADHD. It turns out one ADHD subtype is “overfocused.” Overfocused is just as bad (most of the time) than plain old ADHD. I experience “overfocus” in two ways. I can focus jim dandy on the wrong thread with little effort. If I fight hard and long enough I can get super focused on the right thread. Great until I need to switch threads. The “switch” takes more effort than my super focus initialization. Hey, I got good news too. (Sarcastic) I also display plain old ADHD chaotic brain and chronic ants-in-the-pants. The chaotic brain results from my inability to suppress many unrelated thoughts vying for conscious space simultaneously. The end result – no production – is the same as bogus focus.
Hmn, come to think of it there is another reason I did not suspect ADHD. I was not a disruptive child in school. Maybe I just feared the nuns. All our home movies show me in constant movement. That could be 8mm film or Pop shooting action only scenes. I never thought of myself as hyperactive until you said that you “caught” ADHD by talking with me. That is so cool. You know I think you the man. For me to blow your brain makes me proud.
Well, now, I got me ADHD and got me a particularly bad case of it according to my shrink. My experience supports shrink’s opinion. What’s the fix?
In addition to medication, there are a number of things that I must do or the meds are worthless. “Do not put more on my plate than I can chew” heads the list and has no second place competition. It is so difficult for me because I AM DRIVEN. It also means that I may never be able to do all the things I could never do before. Last phrase no typo. I have a major, major, major problem with learning to accept my limitations. There are a couple of reasons acceptance is so difficult not the least of which is I know my WOULD BE capabilities IF I didn’t have this demon. One example … <software project> was NOT beginners stuff. I know you got a bigger brain than me. Good for you. What drives me crazy is not living up to my brain size. It drives me nuts. And everyone that hangs out with me including you.
Very well put, Bob. I hear sadness in your post -- or at least I read sadness there because I'm reading into your description what I feel myself.
No matter how this ADD thing plays out in public (what other people see), there is in the background (what I see in myself) a constant reminder that
It also means that I may never be able to do all the things I could never do before.... I have a major, major, major problem with learning to accept my limitations. There are a couple of reasons acceptance is so difficult not the least of which is I know my WOULD BE capabilities IF I didn’t have this demon.
I've been trying to figure out for a loooooong time how to paint. That is, I know how to paint. I took classes and read the theory. I have all the supplies. I have the time. Nothing happens.
Everything else I do is superficial. I enjoy cooking. Occasionally I'll even turn out a meal that that I can be proud of, with just the right balance of flavors. But I'm not a chef -- I don't care what it looks like, and I'm not constantly inspired to create new taste sensations. I like to sew. But more out of necessity than joy -- I sew to make clothes that I can't find in the stores (do the manufacturers really believe that middle aged women are dying to wear hip hugger pants???). I like stitchery and crocheting and knitting. But I can't keep focused on all the fiddly bits of a project long enough to get very many of them done.
I have always felt that painting is a part of who I am. I ache to express that part of me. But why can't I do it?
More of your great description:
I experience “overfocus” in two ways. I can focus jim dandy on the wrong thread with little effort. If I fight hard and long enough I can get super focused on the right thread. Great until I need to switch threads. The “switch” takes more effort than my super focus initialization.
A part of working on a project with any complexity is the need to solve problems. A number of problems can be anticipated and planned for in advance. Supplies: have I got canvas, oil paint that isn't dried out from not having been used in years, brushes, terpentine, an uncluttered table to work on (hahahaha), etc? Do I have a photo from which to get inspiration? Now things start to get tricky. I start a sketch on paper so that I can approximate what I want the finished product to look like, so that I don't have to make major revisions on the canvas halfway through. Well, I'll have to make revisions anyway, but how many of them can I eliminate beforehand to minimize the revisions during the painting part of the project? I get bogged down on the sketch. It's a portrait (do I choose simple projects -- noooo!) and I can't proceed with the paint part until I get a sketch that I can be happy with. Put sketch (and therefore project) aside while I feel frustrated at solving this particular problem.
Skip ahead 18 months. Everytime I think of the sketch I think of the frustration. Do I pick up the project and try to focus on that one problem to the exclusion of all the other bits of it? Of course not. I got caught up on a glitch in the running of the program, and I can't "switch threads" as Bob puts it. It was hard enough getting to that point in the project. What happened is that a new problem was inserted in the program. I was fine with the initial concept of: (1) gather supplies, (2) choose photo for inspiration and plan color scheme and canvas size, (3) make sketch on paper, (4) transfer sketch to canvas, (4) start painting, (5) present painting to friends who would make polite comments about painting because they're good friends.
As soon as a new problem arose (that sketch doesn't look remotely like the photo and seriously needs some revisions regarding proportions and the like), the plan fell apart. I couldn't go forward because I needed to revise the sketch before I could start painting. I couldn't revise the sketch because I should be starting the next step at this point -- transfer the sketch to the canvas and start painting. Computer overload and smoke coming out of the mental machinery.
A friend asked me recently if I could just putter around and splash some paint on the canvas. Does not compute. I don't dabble. It's not structured enough. I need structure. It's hard enough to pull together the brain power sufficient to "get super focused on the right thread". But if something comes up to blow that concentration, then switching threads or returning to the original thread "takes more effort than my super focus initialization".
A "normal" person would either (1) pick up another project and work on that until inspiration percolated up out of the subconscious to solve the glitch in the original project or (2) sleep on it and return to the project the next day and attack the problem with renewed vigor. I am not a "normal" person. I get bogged down in details. I get hung up on glitches. I have difficulty switching gears.
If intelligence is measured by those tests that they give you in school, then I am a genius. Uh, those tests are structured. You see the beginning and the end (it's so many pages long and lasts for so much time). You know what they want of you -- check the box for the correct answer. You either know the answer or you don't. Move on to the next question. Turn in the test when you're done or time runs out. Go home. End of project.
Real life isn't so structured. No matter how well I think I've set up the structure in advance, something new steps in and says "hey pay attention to me!!!" It can be an unanticipated problem to solve (duh! hello! creating something new and therefore full of unanticipated problems is what makes the project attractive in the first place!!!) or a need to answer the doorbell or phone or feed the cat or go to the store to get some more supplies or whatever. Insert glitch, derail project. How to adjust to real time glitches and merely insert them into the greater project structure -- that is the mystery of ADD. I dunno the answer.
Maybe I need to up my dosage of meds. Maybe I need to learn to say no to all the other things that step in to take up my time. "Do not put more on my plate than I can chew". Wise words. Makes me sad.
You most accurately mirror me. I read your stuff and I am reading my stuff.
Let me state current state of my ADHD world: "Stable." Dang it anyway I've been so stable before on this remediation curve you could keep horses in it.
Our descriptions (yours and mine) make us sound like either morons or connivers to anyone that does not have the ADHD demon living in their brains. How can thought thread interruption be terminal? How can you sit there and do the most complex stuff (short of brain repair) one day and not the next? Worse yet, how can you do the complex but can't do the simple? Then the next day you do the simple but can't do the complex? You have a convenient brain disorder. Have it when you need it. Cured when you don't.
I tell you one thing I am truly over - going ballistic when the ignorant say stuff like the above. That's cause I'd be the ignorant saying ignorant stuff if I didn't house the beast.
Let's talk about unforeseen problem complexity. Want to know what? It doesn't always stall me. If, and it is the biggest if ever, I find the problem stimulating enough it will throw me into hyperfocus and there is no out until I "got it." "Getting it" is always far short of doing it. I end up derailed anyway because we're talking big "switch."
Want to know more about what? "switch" is a keyword in the C programming language. It is followed by any number of cases. If one of the cases matches the constant in the switch expression, program execution follows that path - all relevant to our cause. I recently saw a big "logical" bug in my ADHD management plan. And forgot about it till now while reading your reply. I do it all the time. Get it and forget it.
We all need a personalized management algorithm NOT a recipe. They tell me recipes are populated with constants. They are? Well, I am jazz cook. I use recipes as algorithm starter kits. An ADHD algorithm starter kit is what we need because we deal with variables on a daily basis. A recipe will work day and look like my wok fire the next.
Dang. I got to quit and do real work. Thread switch time. God help me.
I got to know something or there is no way I can get this thread out of my head.
Do you or have you experienced overfocus? I'll illustrate to make sure we are on same page. You got so involved in a painting that if your studio caught fire you'd move your painting, yourself and your paint outside and let studio burn to ground. Or you'd burn to the ground with it never knowing what happened to you.
Years ago before I knew about ADHD, I'd get me one of those stimulating problems and I was unable to quit until head impacted keyboard. Woke me up enough to go at it a few more hours. After third or fouth impact, I'd go to bed just in time to get up.
Relevance: If you reply "yes" to the above you must be very careful about upping your Rit. Most of us are dumped by our insurance company after the 4th or 5th total loss especially if we went to ashes with the building.
If you reply "no." You got a wicked case of Primarily Inattentive ADD - absolutely no H and absolutely no O. ADD responds very well to stimulants. Within reason, the more the merrier.
Methlyphenidate is probably far too mild for you. Can you get Adderall? The advantage of Adderall is a much longer burn time because of its much longer half life. You can take less of it less often. I've never be able to get any extended release mechanism to work for me. Many swear by them. Don't rule out XR. Might work for you. Take one pill in AM and be done with it.
I've always said I should have joined the military when I was younger (never mind that my weight problems ruled that out) because I'd have thrived under the structure of military life. Heck, I'd probably be a General by now.
Unfortunately, robbed of external structure, I can't cope, I do very little. The problem is, I can't live the rest of my life expecting others to provide my structure for me, I need to learn to make my own.
I have always felt that painting is a part of who I am. I ache to express that part of me. But why can't I do it?
This is such a good description of the ADD I suffer from, that I can't possibly improve on it (well, except that painting isn't what I long to express).
I can entirely relate to the feeling of wanting to do something sooooo badly yet not being able to do it. In my case it's Sociological and Criminological theory. I love both, and I would so love to make a living working with either one, as evidenced by the fact that I go back to University year after year after year trying to force myself to do the groundwork. The problem is, I can't bring myself to consistently focus on the volumes of work that have preceded my own, not from a lack of interest, but simply a complete inability to focus for long periods on dry prose.
An example of ADD Dennis at work that I've found to be rather amusing in hindsight happened just last year. I'd written a paper about labour unions and the concessions they'd won from a Marxist viewpoint which, frankly, I thought was rather good. Imagine my chagrin when I managed to struggle far enough in the textbook to realize that I'd more or less paraphrased one of the more influential Marxist philosophers of the Twentieth Century without citing him. A panicked visit to my professor's office followed where I swore that it wasn't intentional, because I hadn't done the readings before I'd written my paper. Fortunately he believed me and gave me an "A" because he was so darn impressed that I could come up with such an insight on my own. Of course, coming up with stuff people have already covered is swell, but I likely won't make an impact until I'm building on existing ideas rather than duplicating them.
My ulitmate point here is, most people, including a certain mental health "professional" that I visited (once, and only once!) tell me that the fact I haven't been able to do the groundwork means that I don't really want to do it, and if I really wanted to I'd be able to. This is completely untrue. I want to do it! I want to do it so badly that I've spent a ridiculous number of years pursuing a degree that probably won't do me any good because grad school admissions committees likely frown on people that took a decade to get a BA. I was told that I need antidepressants because I need to accept that I'm a forklift driver and not a Criminologist, and that I need to learn to be happy with what I am. I was told that I don't really have the tools or the desire to go any further in life. Wrong! What I have is ADD. ADD is treatable, and I can achieve more than I have! Watch me!
I suffer from primarily inattentive ADD as well, no "O," no "H." I wish I could manage hyperfocus, I might have actually achieved something by now.
I tell you honest and I tell you true - don't wish overfocus on yourself. It really is Bogus Focus. I used it to my advantage, made a few bucks. Then lost them and dang near lost my lovely wife. She accused me of marrying a monitor. It hurt. Because even though I'm stupid, I'm not dumb.
Figure that one out. ADHD causes me to act stupid. I knew relationships fall apart when one or the other stops giving - especially attention - so I'm not dumb.
I knew I was in the wrong. I couldn't figure for the life of me how to fix me. The two of us worked hard on our relationship blind so to speak and marriage was saved.
Primary cause of our difficulties was my overfocus not the usual chaotic ADHD brain symptoms.
It is easier for me to pull out of attention deficit than it is to pull out of overfocus.
I'll brag for the sake of you and Rheanna. I have made good progress on controlling the beast. There are two equally important elements in beast control. Enough freaking meds. Learning how to structure our life.
The right dose is I what I mean by enough. For primarily ADD without H and O, it usually takes at least the max recommended for Adderall - 40 mg. For some primarily ADD, it takes more than max. One of the few advantages of being a former bad boy is I know how much it takes to do you harm. I'll bet someone can do 200mg/day for years before that high of a dose does something bad - like stroke or heart attack. The stuff is safe unless you got a bad ticker. 20mg can drop you dead if bad heart is the case. Do not perceive that I am saying that Adderall is not dangerous if misused. It is killer. But abuse is the killer not 60 or 80 mg per day if that is what is needed.
With the right med/dose and a lot of work and a few years you can learn to structure your life. Incorrect med/dose, no meds because they turn you into a speed freak (do you hear my whinny sarcasm?) you are dead in the water, and me, and Rheanna. That my friend is the ugly truth about adult ADHD management. There is something biologically wrong with our brains. The deficiency causes us to develop a slew of bad habits. I don't know maybe I am stupid and dumb but I think bad habits are hard to break given a perfectly normal brainy. How about you? So how are we going to get organized, scheduled and all that good stuff with a chaotic thought process going on under the hood?
Thunor, how can you want to be a copper when you write better than Shakespeare? You embarrass me. If feel dumb, stupid AND ignorant following your act. Police work is an honorable craft and sure love having them around except when I'm driving. My cousin is a copper. Cuz was born for police work. He can't write worth a hoot, but trust me, you don't want to tangle with the boy. He's built like that guy that runs California - you know - what's his name - Swartzennaergger - spell checker can't figure it either.
That is my story and I am sticking to it. Cause I know I'm write.
I feel I owe it to you to validate some of my statements. I got more than anecdotal evidence suggesting higher stimulant doses can be safe. Studies done by Harvard Medical School are one of my sources. I must add a few details. The higher doses should be warranted and are tolerated well by the patient.
I made it clear umpteen times I don't have much use for U.S. shrinks. Again there is more to it than bad personal experiences.
I'll try to make this brief. Our experiences do profoundly affect how we view and judge things. Years ago, perhaps 25 years ago, I was struggling with an algorithm definition. I good friend and programmer said, "Bob, look for the pattern." Have you ever had a 10,000 KILO-watt bulb go off in your head?
Daaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn , I got it, type thing?
Patterns are everything when it comes to defining brain disorders. Dr. Daniel Amen has done thousands, maybe tens of thousands, of SPECT scans - a type of brain imaging. The scan displays blood flow to various brain regions.
Dr. Daniel Amen started seeing patterns. My simplified version: Region A isn't lightening up, and the patient is exhibiting these symptoms. Region B isn't lightening up and this patient is exhibiting different symptoms. Over time he saw that Region A light failure consistently produced the same symptoms in hundreds of people. And other brain regions followed suit.
The boy found the patterns. He has the empirical proof everyone so desperately wants. You'd think he'd be made a hero. He will be about a week after he croaks and all the other bozo shrinks try to steal his glory claiming Amen's discoveries as their own.
Becoming a scientist does not protect anyone from becoming vain and egotistical hence blinded to the legitimate discoveries made by the competition. Dr. Amen is outside of the "establishment" so he can't be correct. How can a heretic be right? Ask Galileo.
Rheanna, explain "establishment" to Thunor.
I started off cynical back in the 60's and it has only gotten worse since.
I ran into "establishment" shrinks and they are worse than my worse fears - most of them that is.
Has anything changed since the 60's. Yes. I no longer believe everyone over 30 should be shot.
Last edited by addprogrammer; 07-17-2008 at 12:18 PM.
Reason: Forgot "be" between should and shot
The thing about the brain imaging is that the entire science is still pretty new. There are people who want to use brain scans in court for one reason or another, not sure that's justified yet.
However, doing what Dr Amen is doing, scanning people's brains and studying their symptoms and trying to put the two together makes sense. I personally know a couple people who are trying to do the same for schizophrenia. [I just had a total mental block against spelling that word, thank heaven for search engines and tabbed browsing]
How mature is Dr Amen's work scientifically? Don't know, haven't read it. Maybe I will.
Your descriptions are pretty spot-on. I really admire your honesty and good sense where ADHD are concerned.
OK, lots and lots of topics in this thread. Lots of interesting topics. I'd rather sit here discussing them than doing anything useful in "real life". So, this will take a while. Who needs clean dishes or clothes?
Rheanna, I got to know something or there is no way I can get this thread out of my head. Do you or have you experienced overfocus?
Overfocused type ADD? Probably not. That is, I can grab onto a thread and worry it to death until I understand it or have worked out the interesting bits, but I get distracted too easily. I would resent the distractions and try to get back to the thread as soon as possible, but if the distractions were persistant enough they would distract me. I would notice a fire. I would hesitate about whether I should grab the cat or the painting as I run out the door, I would feel ashamed and resentful at the same time as I chose the cat (ashamed that I would even consider anything else but the cat), but as I was standing on the sidewalk watching the firefighters and soothing the cat, I would be freaking about the unfinished painting and feeling great frustration that my thread had been snipped.
On the other hand I used to have a frequently recurrent nightmare. I would dream that I had accompanied a few folks into an abandoned building in an unfamiliar town, and I would start exploring. Suddenly I would come out of my dream-revery, notice that several hours had passed everyone else had moved on and I was alone in the house in a strange town and I had no idea how to get home. Freakout as I woke from this dream. I eventually figured out that this was an abandonment issue (uh, I come from a very neurotic family and I used to have some real fears about being abandoned and therefore dying because I was too young to fend for myself), as well as a dream-metaphor for being lost in some interesting thread (as you describe it above), and looking up to find that my support network had moved on without me and I was going to die. So -- being totally absorbed in a thread to the exclusion of other stimuli means death to me. I fear death. So I go only partially into my absorption.
Dr. Amen does indeed have some interesting ideas. What I have read about his work is that other scientists find it interesting, but until they can duplicate it themselves or see other work that validates the theories, they are withholding judgement. Although, his description of the Type #2 sounds like a perfect fit for me!
Dr. Amen is outside of the "establishment" so he can't be correct. How can a heretic be right? Ask Galileo. Rheanna, explain "establishment" to Thunor.
For the young whippersnappers among us, "the establishment" was defined as organized business and law enforcement and any institution that thought that its rules and regulations were the correct way to live. We hippies (and the wannabees amongst the less brave of us) knew that humans were supposed to be free to live in the moment and dress as we chose. Business clothes and neckties were conforming, confining (spiritually as well as physically), boring costumes -- hippy clothes were not conforming costumes -- even if there was a dress code that defined hippy vs establishment, we were not conforming to anything! "Make love, not war" was our motto. The establishment's views of rules and regulations and "proper" behavior was stifling to the free human spirit! Uh, I could get carried away with nostalgia, here!
So I will wrench myself with difficulty away from nostalgic hippydom and return to the topic at hand, and say that the use of the word establishment in the context of this thread's discussion means that whoever is in power is the establishment, and "they" consolidate their power by refusing recognition to anyone who goes too far afield of the approved set of rules and regulations and "dress code" and theories and such. So we have the idea that scientists who propose radical theories are being ostracised by the mainstream scientists (the establishment), because they just won't tow the party line by agreeing with the established wisdom that other scientists know to be true.
The problem with this black-and-white view of things is that it puts things in emotional terms, rather than scientific ones. This is what the hippy movement was about -- it polarized issues on an emotional level rather than a practical one. On a practical level, scientists are moved to accept new ideas as accepted theories when they have seen enough eveidence from enough sources to see that the ideas have merit. When just one scientist declares that his radical new hypothesis is "true", then other scientists pipe up and say -- how can the rest of us duplicate it so that we can see, via many different views of the same data, that this new idea works regardless of whether someone loves the idea or not, whether someone believes in the idea or not, whether someone wants so deeply that this idea were true that he's overlooking some flaw in his testing methods. Scientists are human, and all scientists worth their salt have to be open to the idea that they have built in biases towards their own work -- this is why a hypothesis (a proposed working idea to see if it holds up to scrutiny) can be move to the status of a theory (it's been verified so many times that we can now assume that it is as good as truth) -- until the next upstart scientist comes along with a radical new hypothesis.
So Amen's ideas are still in the early stages. I don't think that he is being ostracized because the "establishment" doesn't like brilliant geniuses upsetting the prevailing wisdom, but because many of them are waiting to see if further testing by other scientists validates the intitial ideas of Amen. Until other scientists can verify the results, it cannot be ruled out that Amen is blinded by his own sincere desire to believe that his ideas are true.
My two cents.
I've always said I should have joined the military when I was younger ... because I'd have thrived under the structure of military life. Heck, I'd probably be a General by now.
Thunor, this is an excellent description of the need that ADDers have for external structure because we have great difficulties providing it for ourselves. I went to a lecture a couple of nights ago (will start a thread on that topic, uh, soon?) where the speaker noted that a great many ADDers find that their frustrations and problems are relieved when they wind up in the military -- or prison. Those organizations (can you say "establishment"?) are the epitome of outside imposed structure. What we are trying to do here in the ADD Board is find a less drastic way of managing our ADD symptoms. Well, ok, for some people the military can be a positive way of serving the community and being a productive member of society. Let's try real hard to avoid the other "establishment", prison.
Running out of steam here. More later. Have dishes to wash.
You may have noticed a radical shift in this (my) thread focus. Said "shift" is not the result of ADHD. Something dawned on me. Your descriptions are identical to my experience except for my "overfocus" component. I do very well on 10 to 20 mg of Adderall/day. If I go over 20mg, I can't swap threads easily and sometimes not at all. You describe perfectly my ADD component but not my "overfocus."
If I hadn't read Dr. Amen, I do not know if any psychiatrist in my neck of woods would have spotted the subtle difference. At least my current guy entertained Amen's stuff to my benefit. The previous three shrinks I saw would never say "Amen to Amen." They screwed me up worse than if I just managed the best I could.
I find it interesting that the authors of another book, "A Comprehensive Guide to ADHD in Adults" also found patterns. The authors go into detailed analysis of many case studies and conclude ADHD is largely genetic. I got done with the read and I was sold. Their evidence was too strong to ignore. Why aren't the "establishment" guys reserving opinion of this work? Well, now, let's see, and wait for a few million more cases before we give them our blessing.
If the mainline shrinks were helping people, I would have looked no further. They SUCK at their job. When I read goldengirls thread about how her doctor used "tics" as the ADHD diagnostic criteria, I went over the edge. I had to refrain from posting until I calmed down so that I didn't inadvertently damage goldengirl with an out of control tirade.
Rheanna, you work too hard at ADHD management. The reason you are not getting the results your efforts deserve is because you are grossly under medicated. I feel so much for you, I'd kill the <all the worst vile expletives> that put you in this position. You do not deserve it.
It was my intent from "shift" onward to help you see you need more medication or you will never get the beast caged.
Once we have definitions it is a "simple" matter to write the algoogoorithm. More accurate: It is impossible to write any algorithm without an accurate definition list first.
I got up to about thirty definitions when solution went off in my head like a 20 gigawatt blub.
What I need, me Bob specifically, is Super Thread Technology. STT would be the basis for my ADHD Scheduling System. Its acronym would be PERFECT if only my market was SHRINKS. I changed it to CAAR (Computer Assisted ADHD Remediation).
The solution? Keep my world loaded in working memory - all of it - 24/7 365. Live my life as one big super thread because that is what it is - not a bunch of thread fragments. More accurately I have a system to manage my life "Process" and within that process many threads.
The solution does not lie in code but entirely in the Interface. I have one Excel sheet that displays my entire life. I look at that sheet and I see me. I came across the slight problem of number of details in the one view. I solved it by keeping top level categories on main view and displaying details on secondary views that are displayed in a side-by-side window. I never lose my "big picture" view.
I use hugh goudy colored command buttons to swap views and control window alignment. My brain just loves bells and whistles. So I gave it what it loves even though my interface looks like designed for a first grader. Hmn.
I am waaay out of my league in this thread. With this one (as with many that Bob, rheanna, & thunor create), there are too many words for me. You guys seem to love words. I get lost in them....
A few things that I can relate to... I like your last post, Bob. I do see myself in it. Despite my ID, I am not a computer person (in any way, shape, form, or fashion). However, for several months now, I have been keeping track of ALOT of different variables in my life in excel. I can't do all the algorithms, etc that you do, but it does help to see the unseeable in graph form.
Also, somewhat similiar, was when Palm Pilots came out. I made a strap for carrying the darn thing around my neck. It was great to be able to record every thought and every reminder that I didn't want to forget. Unfortunately, self-consciousness won out and I've gone back to sticky notes.
Last, a comment about Dr Amen. The main problem I see with him is that he puts the cart before the horse. He sees a few things that he thinks are correlations between scans and behaviors and BOOM, he writes a book or two or three. He immediately tries to use his knowledge to make money off of Joe Public. That isn't the usual way of doing things and I have a feeling that is the major problem "the establishment" has with him. Normally, a physician who has made what he thinks is a significant discovery will a) perform randomized tests to validate his theory and b) write it up in a major medical journey with the hope that other physicians will also research/test/validate the theory. Dr Amen doesn't appear to be inclined to seek validation from other physicians. Me thinks there must be a reason why.
Please bear in mind that all of these musings about Dr Amen are strictly that - my thoughts. Perhaps there is more research with double-blind studies going on than meets the eye. I just haven't seen it yet.
One further thought on Dr Amen. Perhaps the problem I have is his appealing to the public before convincing other professionals. I have issues with Cesar Milan, too. So, take what I say with the proverbial grain of salt.
Edit to "My brain wants to load everything at once, let's HELP it do what it wants to do."
Stop reading. Rant coming.
Look at all the posts on this board. Count how many are really being helped by the mainliners. Count how many are getting obviously bad advice and bad prescriptions from their doctors.
Give me your percentage for those that are being helped.
The standard argument is those helped don't post. Ok, I know a few people personally that are obviously suffering from ADHD. Excepting myself my ratio is 0% for those being helped. The doctors got most of them on enough antidepressants they no longer care their life is screwed up. Hmn, sound like what I used to do with speed - except this case its legal.
I'm sick over it.
None of us deserve the pitiful mental health care dished out by the mainliners. How many hours have those of us on this board put into controlling our ADHD symptoms? We are working our tails off to get managed. No one can point the finger at us if our efforts are turning up goose eggs.
Please understand that I'm not arguing on behalf of mainline "trists". It sounds that way because I was giving my best guess as to why Dr Amen isn't accepted by them. That doesn't mean I think that Amen is wrong and the others are right. I'm not in a position to make that judgement.
Here's what I really don't understand, though. What exactly is Dr Amen doing different from everyone else? Are you taking a medication that the other trists wouldn't have prescribed?
The combination of a low dose stimulant and an antidepressant is the combination that works wonders for me. I am able to replace a prescription antidepressant with three amino acids, L-tyrosine, L-tryptophan and 5-HTP. I got my med/amino acid recipe right out of Dr. Amen's books.
No mainline shrink came close to getting the meds right for me. Psychiatrists are the biggest pile of baloney (I cannot use the word I want to use) that exists. If I were Dr. Amen, I wouldn't want peer approval either. Fact is, I'd avoid it at all costs.
I'm with you Bob, it's ironic that we all seem to know that the doctors and shrinks are useless, yet what's the first bit of advice we give to anyone that shows up here? Go see a shrink.
I can't speak to Dr. Amen's work, but I can tell you that I've only met one shrink that seemed to have the first clue, and I couldn't afford him.
Opening the safe is easy once we know the combination. Figuring out the combination is well beyond my capabilities. Telling them to see a shrink is our only option. The odds are one in a hundred IMHO they'll find a shrink with a brain. Still better odds than finding the combo by chance.
All of us can up our chances by educating ourselves with an open mind. Close minded thinking excludes possibilities that may work. Gullibility makes matters even worse. It is truly a tight rope walk if I ever saw one.
I guess what puts me over the edge the most is when I read posts about doctors who obviously are unable to detect ADHD DSM-IV criterion in their patients. They resort to blind chance voodoo like practices. Let's pump in this poison and see what happens. We do not need the services of a witch doctor. Hmn, might be why we call them "shrinks."