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Could this be ADHD and if so what should I do?

1 reply

Garysmum · 08/09/2022 12:16

I have always thought that I think differently to others but never really associated my issues with ADHD but now I am wondering.
Some of things I struggle with:
*Organisation has always been my weakest point. I always write lists, lose them write more lists and struggle through
*Always turn up massively early as can't cope with stress of idea of being late
*Lose things all the time. At least one major lost my XYZ per week - normally 2-3 - in the last 5 days I had a meltdown due to losing house key one day and debit card another day.
*Although I've always done well at exams etc - I have never achieved at work, partly due to poor organisation skills, but also I struggle to stay focussed and fully admit to being a last minute merchant
*Having said that there are times when I am really interested in something its like falling down a black hole
*People have repeatedly told me I zone out. I'm not that aware of it apart from in a work situation when I do zoom with camera off whenever possible. I cope generally at work by forcing myself to write everything down

  • Prone to huge emotional outbursts as I just can't cope with the level of my emotions
    *I am extremely sensitive about negative reactions to me, crtisism and sometimes maybe often it's perceived cristism that sets me off
    *Hate busy environments with lots of people or too much stuff going on. They exhaust me
    *Find social events tricky but have had a lot of work feedback over the years that I am extremely talkative
    *Have random bursts of energy where everything gets done and then I'm too tired to do stuff
    *I have random impulse control and can do well for a while, have a bad day and then eat a whole packet of biscuits or last week I bought some expensive headphones as I couldn't find my existing pair
    *When working, I often get up and walk around in my own little world
  • I love a tidy environment - currently on my desk there are: 3 pairs of glasses, 5 cups, several empty coke cans, sewing scissors, a stack of old bills, hand sanitiser, half a sandwich, several packs of wipes

    Does this resonate with anyone?

    Is there any point in seeking a formal diagnosis - the wait around here for NHS psychiatry appointments is 2 years plus (I have depression so sought help for that but that focussed solely on how to get me back out of bed.)
    I am long term ill with an immune condition so have thought I was depressed and lethargic and useless due to that.
OP posts:

groovergirl · 11/09/2022 04:12

Hi OP. It does sound like you have a mild to moderate case of ADHD, something a lot of us are having to cope with alone because of the long wait for assessment. Sorry to hear you are also dealing with other health conditions.

I'm in Australia, where there is no publicly-funded assessment for adult ADHD and a huge queue for private help -- so I really am on my own, and therefore am ruthless about putting measures in place to help myself. Not to hijack your thread, but some of these tactics might be useful.

  1. Zoom/Teams meetings. I have to do these for work, and used to hate them. Tied to a desk when I'd be thinking faster and better on my feet. Grrr! Now I take these as old-school phone calls and am a much more engaged participant. My (passive-aggressive) boss said, "Oh, but we can't see you!" and I jauntily said, "You don't need to. I'm here, I'm attentive, I can hear every word you say and I can think and talk much better when I'm walking around."
  2. Losing things. What does your everyday bag look like? This is critical to not losing keys, cards etc. Mine is a silver leather Oroton tote. Capacious, just chuck everything necessary in it, leave it in the hall and sling it over my shoulder on my way out.
  3. Criticism. Say "thank you for sharing", 'I'll take that on board" or some other bland response. And leave it there. But please think of ways to defuse your emotions in your own time. (A brisk walk or dance to music does it for me.)
  4. If your house is messy, hire a cleaner. They have seen it all before. They want to make your life better, one room at a time. Hire them, pay them, praise them effusively. Outsource whatever else you find tricky, such as gardening. These experts deserve our support.

As for your "Random bursts of energy when everything gets done," and turning up super early, love yourself for these. Good on you.

ADDitude magazine is a good online resource.

I write this as someone who is still struggling, and whose home office is full of paper that I can't face sorting because I have too much else to do. Middle age brings a huge mental load. And that's the time when many of us realise that something is not quite right. Be kind to yourself and hire some home help as you need to, because it could be a long time before the medical realm helps you.
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