A little girl sits in her third-grade classroom staring at the chalkboard, with butterflies in her stomach. All of sudden she feels a hand grab her arm, hard enough to leave five nail marks on her arm. Back then, ADHD was thought to be a disorder found only in boys. Others teachers yelled at me to pay attention, or told me I needed to apply myself or that I could do better. What no one knew was that I was trying my hardest to focus and pay attention.
Twisted adult picture balance high academic expectations with letting them be themselves. Thank you for your support. So she was active in the high school drama club and actually went off to college hoping to become a playwright someday. I think it gives me a special ability to deal with people, to empathize with them, to qdhd the strengths in them. Shankman worked hard earning his undergraduate degree in journalism and photojournalism from Boston University.
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By Eileen Bailey. Wierd sensory cravings are gone. Kelly ashd you read this n you need advice let me know. He decided to stoties on campus to simplify the process. The diagnosis finally came bout when I was attempting to go to dtories after graduating from high school five years earlier. How has the medication helped? I felt like I had a side effect of being more aggressive at work. Farrow, Adult adhd success stories sports enthusiast, also wondered if he could apply interval training, a popular sports-training technique, to his own brain. I have more patience with work and my family. One shop led to 10, making him the owner of one of Legend of jesse jame christopher jones largest independent auto-repair chains in the Washington, D. I also feel that the long term diagnoses of taking ADD medication is still unknown or they are not telling us because of the market on this medication. All rights reserved. Its all about balance and discipline— but there is no doubt I would not have the success in my life without Audlt. All the questions that I Bondage caf ignore because I want to Adult adhd success stories the hyper focusing so badly.
Carrie is about to finish her sophomore year in college after a very, very rocky start to her college career.
- I was twenty five years old, stuck in a dead end job and just not sure which way to turn next.
- I regularly hear great things — i.
- Executive coach and author of Business in Blue Jeans.
- Success stories.
- Six artists, thinkers, and entrepreneurs with ADHD share their remarkable success stories and prove that taking the road less traveled can, indeed, make all the difference.
Carrie is about to finish her sophomore year in college after a very, very rocky start to her college career. She actually was kind of skeptical about it and thought she just needed to try harder. So she was active in the high school drama club and actually went off to college hoping to become a playwright someday. So, after arriving at college, Carrie became very active in one of the drama clubs on her campus. She began to stage-manage and she started hanging out with all of the drama club students and was enjoying a great deal, and contributing great deal, to the activities of that organization.
She also used the same studies, strategies that she had used in high school. She found herself cramming for the exams.
It turned out that she ended up spending too much time with her extracurriculars and not enough time studying. So after failing two classes in her spring semester, Carrie was asked to take an academic leave of absence from her college. She came back home and was evaluated in our program and we did in fact diagnose her with ADHD. We explained to her exactly how it was that she had managed to do fine until college and that she had managed to get by until she was in this unstructured learning environment.
We spent a lot of time teaching her about adult ADHD, we started her on an ADHD medication, and she began coming for weekly cognitive behavioral trainings sessions. Over the course of the next few months, she began to get more and more comfortable with the diagnosis and with figuring out what she needed to do to get difficult tasks done. She managed to get a job in selling tickets in local theater company and eventually she decided to take some courses in community college.
She did extremely well and she really figured that she was now ready to go back to college. She went back this past year and has done exceptionally well, getting most As and a few Bs, keeping herself very organized and able to balance the lifestyle that she wants.
After so many years of researching and looking for answers and going to doctors, I started to become very clear about some of these behaviors that are existing in my world as well. It was ADHD. Beginning in late middle school and early high school he started experimenting with marijuana and alcohol, and eventually began to use other substances like cocaine, and finally, by the time he was finishing high school — and he barely graduated — James was using prescription opiates.
After high school he worked for a few years as a janitor, but this addiction to OxyContin got the better of him. He finally was in an accident, got a DUI, and was court mandated for treatment; and they discovered that he not only had an alcohol abuse problem, he also had marijuana and opiate addition.
For this he was given the diagnosis of polysubstance abuse and was started in an outpatient treatment in our facility. So James was started on suboxone to help him withdraw from opiates, and he was also started on citalopram because he was complaining of depression; and he was able to maintain sobriety, but he had a real tough time concentrating and getting simple things done.
He tried to go back to work and found it very difficult to stay focused on his job duties, and was reprimanded for coming in late. So as a result, we then were asked to consult with, and lo and behold, we realized that, even though he was being treated for addition, he still had the ADHD that plagued him as a child.
So we added OROS methylphenidate, and we began having him come for weekly cognitive behavioral therapy sessions in which he relearned what ADHD really is for someone his age, and where we began to help him overcome some of his negative attitudes about learning routines and doing things that required mental effort.
James had dreams, wanted to do something with his life, but had always avoided them and had turned to substances to help him with things that made him anxious like social relationships. As time went on, James began to talk about wanting to start his own business, and lo and behold, he was able to get started in this business. What James likes to say now is that he wished that he had continued his treatment for administered; maybe he would have avoided substance use disorder.
But he takes it all in stride.
Celexa is wonderful. As a young adult, I had dreams for years of being a doctor. It changed her life. Sharing that I have the condition with others has been essential to my happiness. But You Might Be Lost. Hi My 8 year old son has been on Ritalin for the past year- for him it works wonders, however, at this time he can only tolerate 5 mg twice a day.
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In fact, stories are what our culture is comprised of. Even a visit to your doctor if you have a good one , will entail stories. But never have I read a book that walks me through the struggles and triumphs of an ADHDer in a way that gives me hope for my own resurrection from my abyss of symptoms.
For now, I am pining for a book or article or movie — something — that will take me through the life of someone at the far end of the spectrum comme moi and have a happy, successful ending. I want to see them verbally abused, maybe adopted, I want to see them with zits and skinny legs in high school, with coke-bottle glasses and feeling like an outsider.
I want to see them drop acid, hang out with the brainy kids, be misunderstood and hit on by their teachers. I want to see them victimized, traumatized and scrutinized — and fight their way through it all with their creativity and optimism in tact. I want to see them get fired from their first adult job s. I want to see them go into therapy and mess up relationships and still manage to shine once in a while.
I want to see what keeps them going, and I want — most of all — to see them find a diagnosis, take ADHD meds or not and turn all that around. I want them to be happy. I want them to overcome. This Chick A-D-D is working hard to fill that gap with my own book.
Barely remember my teenage years, and my adult life is hazy. So be patient, dear ADHD sisters and brothers. Or via RSS Feed. Find help or get online counseling now. Hallowell, M.
The doctor added bupropion Welbutrin and my life changed at least as much as it had when I started using citalopram.
I put down a coffee cup, a book or a tool in plain sight and search for it a few minutes later. Pointless angry rumination about long-past or far-distant events is gone. Wierd sensory cravings are gone. I may have forgotten it. It has not only helped me in my day-to-day living but also in my college career. I have had ADHD my entire life—27 years. The diagnosis finally came bout when I was attempting to go to college after graduating from high school five years earlier.
After I began experiencing the same frustrations as I did throughout my school years, I started to realize there was more going on in my brain than me just not putting forth the effort required or simply not being able to hear my teachers or now, my professors. I knew I was doing everything possible on my part to try and make the best grades.
I also knew my hearing ability was not the problem. I was wearing the newest developed hearing aids and I always sat in the front row, directly in front of my professors. Besides not hearing a word here or there because the professor turned his back or walked to another part of the room, I knew for the most part I was not struggling to hear what was being said.
It was most definitely a matter of comprehension, as well the ability to continue following along when I actually did grasp a concept. The minute I entered a classroom and I knew we were taking a test my brain began immediately shutting down because all I could think about was whether or not I was going to finish in time and I would continuously glance at the clock.
I needed to be able to read each question and then reread it twice or three times, however many it took for me to comprehend exactly what was being asked. When put under pressure by a time clock, there were times I never did understand any of the questions because I was not able to think them through clearly because of the fear in my mind that completely hindered me from being able to concentrate at all.
Among other ADHD symptoms I struggled with were organization, interrupting others for fear of forgetting my thoughts, being on time or even being able determine how much time I needed to allow myself for travel to get somewhere and be on time.
I remember growing up starting so many projects or having visions and goals but I either never started them or never finished them. Some, I remember, I finished weeks or months later. I almost never completed assignments on time for school spent many long nights finishing them because of procrastination or not knowing how to divide an assignment up over a period of time to work on little by little; I always felt when I got going on something I had to stay with it until it was completely finished.
The biggest struggle I still have is hyperfocusing!! I need to get back to using my timer to keep me on track with using my time adequately.
Like now! Once I was finally diagnosed and began taking Adderall my whole world changed—literally! Although I wish my diagnosis of ADHD was discovered much earlier in my life, possibly saving me a lot of heartache, disappointments, frustration, and failures in school and relationships with my family and friends, I am certainly grateful that I am now receiving appropriate treatment methods.
I can now experience life in so many enjoyable ways that I never could or never knew how before. Since I had done so well in Statistics, I was asked to become a paid tutor to help other students. It was an awesome experience because I knew exactly how they needed to be taught very specific step-by-step, esp. I was diagnosed with ADD inattentive, not hyperactive at age 28 and have been taking Dexedrine for ten years.
I have experienced much success professionally and academically. I take 2. From the very first dose during my lunch hour at work I felt calm and focused for the first time in my life. I have never tried any more than 2. I try and take no more than 3 doses a day. I try not to have meetings after 6PM or engage in any activity that stimulates the brain. This is not very realistic, but I have learned through the years that it is the best way to regulate the ADHD brain.
I have also learned to not feel guilty about this need, nor explain to anyone why. My doctor— who is a D. My morning ritual before Dexedrine was a four shot latte with three sugars. I noticed the first week of Dexedrine I was unable to finish my morning latte.
Ever since then my diet and lifestyle has adjusted to the medication. I take much less sugar and caffeine. I rarely use alcohol and if I do it is only beer and wine with dinner. I do not recommend using alcohol if using stimulant medication for ADHD. Daily exercise and hydration is essential for me to regulate metabolism and help with sleep and focus. When I find myself losing focus toward the end of a dose, I use protein nuts and drink concentrated vegetable juice V Through the years I have discovered that when I am in complete control of my environment— such as when I retreat into nature— and there are no unnatural distractions or modern mechanical sound, I am able to function quite well without medication.
I also have learned to use cognitive-behavioral techniques and incorprate music and meditation into my lifestyle. This has been invaluable once in a while when I forget to have a dose with me while at work or in a social situation when I must regulate my behavior.
Its all about balance and discipline— but there is no doubt I would not have the success in my life without medication. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of I first took Ritalin, the 4 hour pills.
I had trouble taking them on time so the results were mixed. I did see improvement in my ability to think and talk sequentially.
I felt like I had a side effect of being more aggressive at work. My therapist thought I was just experiencing normal boundaries. I moved cities at the age of I asked my new pyschiatrist for Straterra. He thought it worked best at 80 mg. Again my thoughts and speech was more sequential. I feel great on Straterra. I also switched to Celexa from Zoloft at this time. Zoloft had sexual side effects for me.
Celexa is wonderful. It has no cognitive slowing or sexual side effects. It is my understanding it targets a smaller group of seratonin uptake inhibitors. This works. Having gone 10 years on way too little sleep makes me appreciate Trazadone.
It does, however, leave me a little slow in getting going in the morning, both with thinking and moving. My normal way to wake up is to jump up shower, eat, and be on my way, so, I miss that. Dani, You will need to see a physician. Check at BYU — they may have a student health service which can help you out.
Then, you get a prescription and fill it at the pharmacy. The few times that I have run low on medication have reinforced just how difficult life was without the prescriptions. The first guy I saw wanted to give me adderall then he insisted that I take Wellbutrin in combination to the effexor xr that I already have.
I was not happy with this at all! Wellbutrin is for depression not ADHD. It looks like doctors think that adults with ADD are just drug seekers. Does anyone know someone in Miami who will be willling to prescirbe stimulant ADD medicaions? Intuniv is a miracle. Let me tell you why. My 8 year old son has had huge problems at school and home for the last 3 years. He is not diagnosed ADHD but does have some symptoms i. He has been suspended 3 times from school for exploding at his teachers — kicking, biting, scratching, yelling, etc.
We have been going to a behavioral counselor for about 6 months. He has been on Strattera for about 5 months and we did see a little improvement in his focus in the mornings but not the afternoons.
My son has hardly ever completed all his required work at school. He is very smart and is a loving child but it seemed like he was getting lost under all his various issues and symptoms. We were definitely on a road to expulsion and testing for bipolar or schizophrenia. So 2 weeks ago we started him on Intuniv. And now he is a different child. Actually he is the child I always knew he was underneath. His tics are totally gone. He is calm and relaxed and very happy.
He easily transitions to other activities with no problem. His teachers, principal, therapist, school counselor, and all our relatives are astounded at the difference. Today he droppef his tray in the lunchroom which normally would have caused a huge explosive meltdown.
I hope these effects last. Who knows what will happen in the future for him. But I believe this drug has changed all our lives dramatically. I have been taking Concerta since shortly after it came to market, nearly 10 years by now. It has been a Godsend. My work has always involved writing and I did not do poorly in the past, but my productivity, the fluidity of my writing, has risen sharply. I used to be afraid to speak in public; for good reasons, my mind would wander off at times in the middle of a talk.
Nowadays speaking in public is as much of an effort as drinking water. I now enjoy giving presentations. Not often stated but just as important is how medication can improve your state of mind and your ability to function socially. A story I read in the American Scholar around the time I discovered my illness helps illustrate.
She is upset and demands to join conference participants, but her claims are dismissed. What does her husband do? Incapable of figuring out what to do, she is left at the top of the stairs, and he stays down below somewhat apart from the group of men, confused, unaware that he should take a stand by her side. Odd, but familiar for a fellow ADHD sufferer. My mother had Glaucoma and I have therefore regularly about once a year checked the pressure in my eyes.
About 3 months ago the doctor found evidence of excessive eye pressure. More troubling, I this pressure and the accompanying increasing and increasingly severe headaches are becoming unbearable. I am probably one of a few people who have been taking Concerta uninterruptedly since shortly after it came on the market in To try to understand the connection between Concerta and my headaches I just went 4 days without taking it.
My headaches subsided but, of course, my inability to concentrate returned. I take the minimum dosage of 18mg every day. Concerta cannot be broken down e. I wonder if some of the other newer medications e. Vyvanse will help. I live in Manila but this is important enough for me to travel to Canada or elsewhere to sort out the options. Suggestions will be much appreciated. Francisco — thanks for sharing your story. If you are having trouble with headaches with Concerta, see if you can take a medicine from the amphetamine group — i.
Adderall XR, or even Dexedrine spansules. I hope this helps. My first try 10 years ago was with Ritalin and it did not go very well. I dont remember exactly, but it made me feel awful. That worked out well. We moved on to Concerta because it was time released and it was a complete success, until now. I will explore Aderall RX with my doctor here in Manila.
I dont think it was available 10 years ago. I am 62 years old and retired in after 30 years as an International Civil Servant. I have a longer more personal testimony that I would be happy to share it if I can remove this and the previous posting and substitute both with an anonymous posting. If you prefer, I can send it to you by email for your consideration.
I checked to see if I could travel to Canada to consult with you, but I saw from your website that you are not taking patients from outside your district in Canada. In any case, I am very grateful for your valuable and swift response to my queries. I would love to hear your testimony. My oldest son, 8 years, has been diagnosed with ADHD. He is so smart and loving, but sometimes I worry about what life will be like for him as an adult. It sounds as if you have managed in spite of your condition.
I would love to hear your story so that I can have some hope and, perhaps, a little less worry. My 7 year old son was recently diagnosed with ADHD. This experience has been so stressful in trying to figure out what was wrong and how to cope with it.
Next month we are going to try a medication, but he has a heart condition so that worries me too. I just want him to have a normal life. My son is 7 as well. He is currently failing 2nd grade, next week we go to the doctor for the final diagnoses, which I beleive will be ADD.
When he was born they were concerned about his heart but we recently had that tested and they said he will be fine to take the medicine. I ask the heart doctor what effects does the medicine have on the heart and he advised me that it increases the rate. I also read that taking the ADD meds will stunt their growth.
I also feel that the long term diagnoses of taking ADD medication is still unknown or they are not telling us because of the market on this medication.
Too many people making money off of this. Do I let my son get left back or put him on the medicine where the teacher feels he will have no problem passing. Am I doing more harm than good….
He is only 7 yrs old and will be on this for a long time. Hi, I too feel the same way. Im torn in two. Do i take the chance or do i wait longer to see how she does without Meds? Im scared. I dont wanna affect her negatively in the long run. I have been on ADD meds for approx. They have saved my life.
I am now on Vyvanse. Why I decided to see a doctor. Every project I ever had in college was finished the morning of, by staying up all night. Getting fired for making small mistakes was the last straw. Here I was, about to graduate, just fired, and looking for a job in one of the worst recessions. Got a job unloading trucks. Received two promotions within a year.
Helped my family out financially and I am happier than ever before. I have had the worst problems recently. Growing up I was always hyperactive, innapropriate blurting out, interupting, saying things that offended others. I had problems with relationships, getting along with others, getting into verbal disagreements, school and work issues.
As I got older I just got more and more overwhelmed. I was diagnosed with ADD at the age of 7, but never put on medications. Tutors never seemed to help either. Than as I got older I was diagnosed with Bipolar, multiple personalities. I was depressed, suicidal, ect. I just seemed lost, and disinterested. I seemed frustrated and confused.
I was able to stay at home and care for him. I was able to be on a schedule — went to bed early, woke up early.
But as time went on, things became overwhelming again. I was having racing thoughts, had trouble getting out of bed, trouble getting to sleep.
I was depressed. I had school, work, and relationships to deal with. I did well in schoola nd made it almost the whole way through, and eventually three months before graduation I failed out due to missing two days that were mandatory. I just could not get to bed, could not focus, felt hopeless like I could not do anything right. I could not remember things, or understand things — that other people were not having any problems remembering or understanding.
I had impulsive problems — I had low self esteem feeling very much lower than my peers. I have been on so many medications and none seem to do much. I feel like I am disorganized and that my life is really falling apart. I am having trouble keeping a schedule for my son and I. I am impatient. I am extremely overwhelmed. I just want my life back. I pray everyday, and keep hoping that maybe a medication can help me. I have a psychiatrist appointment on Monday and am hoping that he can at least try me on an ADHD medication — just to see if that would help.
Kelly if you read this n you need advice let me know. I will try to help you. Just post a message. Hello, thounds like you have a bit of experience, i went to a psychiatrist 3 weeks ago and scored 15 out of 17 points on ADHD BUT i do not have H as there is clearly no hyperactivity but taking medicaiton for 3 weeks did not do anything to me as there were no changes in fighting with ADD.
I TAKE Dex and seen the doctor the second time after been on Dex for a few weeks so he lowered the dousage but still no change. I just read your post. I have been really struggling lately. I went to the clinic that specializes in ADHD. I was so saddened by that. I was diagnosed with add as a kid, and my mom never put me on meds. I wish she did. I really do. As an adult I tried to get assessed for it two times and each time they told me I had bipolar.
ADHD Success Stories: Discussion Forum to Celebrate ADD
Please refresh the page and retry. I was always on the go. As early as my first year at school, my teachers approached my parents saying they thought I might have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, and suggested they consider putting me on Ritalin , the drug that treats the condition in children. My parents were reluctant to put me on any kind of drug and took me to see a child behavioural psychologist instead.
I remember him giving me fun games to play that I really enjoyed, and his assessment to my parents was that I was just a bright kid with a lot of energy and there was nothing wrong with me.
I continued to be known as hyperactive and disruptive all through school. I was teased and bullied mercilessly because my reaction would be explosive — and therefore entertaining.
As a result, I went to seven different schools but it was always the same: I excelled in the subjects I loved, and caused problems in the classes I hated. I know now that people with ADHD are either easily distracted or hyper-focused, depending on what they enjoy doing. I also had difficulties socially. As an adult in the working world, I left or got fired from every job I tried — and I tried all kinds: receptionist, data entry, project management, office admin, PA.
E ventually I left the workforce altogether and explored various non options, like dancing. But gradually I realised that it would best suit me to work for myself from home. I started making some money from freelance blogging and content creation and was lucky that my mother could help me out financially.
A fter studying to be an integrative nutrition coach for a year, I had big plans to set up my own practice and saw running a business as my chance to finally be a success at something. However, I just could not focus enough to prioritise and do the things needed to set everything up to run a successful business. By then I was in my 30s, with years of struggling behind me, so I became really down on myself, assuming that my problems were my fault.
Consistently trying and failing to do the things I wanted to do was so demoralising that eventually I just retreated from the world. Those feelings soon developed into a deep depression — something I had experienced before — but this time it was more serious and really debilitating. I became a recluse and wanted to die instead of live with this unexplained issue. But there was one upside to the depression: it finally led to my diagnosis at the age of After a few months, I went to see my GP and he referred me to an assessor who talked through my symptoms and suggested I may have adult ADHD although, like me, most adults tend not to have hyperactivity part of the condition.
I remembered that my mother once told me that I had ADHD as a child and that my teachers begged her to put me on Ritalin. After doing some research at home and reading a list of the symptoms, I was overcome by tears of relief.
I learned that ADHD in adults can appear alongside many related problems, one of the most common of which is depression; that any problems you had as a child are likely to persist into adulthood; and that adults with ADHD often have trouble finding and keeping employment, as well as maintaining relationships. I tick every single one of the symptoms: from speaking out of turn, to continually starting new tasks before finishing old ones, to an inability to deal with stress, to extreme impatience.
Having a diagnosis meant that, suddenly, my whole life made sense. Finally, I was able to stop blaming myself. I was referred to a specialist psychiatrist and in September this year started taking a prescription drug called Concerta , which is a slow-release stimulant that treats ADHD. My to-do list is no longer a decoration, it actually gets crossed off.
My house is tidier. The people in my life have noticed and are very happy for me. In just a few months, the right medication has turned my life around, and — at last — I feel like I am thriving. We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future. Visit our adblocking instructions page. Telegraph Lifestyle Health and Fitness Body. We've noticed you're adblocking. We rely on advertising to help fund our award-winning journalism.
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