The ADD/ADHD Thread (cont'd from Peeves)

  • So this conversation has a home outside of snark-land, before disaster strikes. Pre-coffee, but it is what it is.

    Experiences, coping mechanisms, relationship to the hobby, etc. <3 No longer in the Pit, so refrain from any urge to be a giant asshole under pain of Ant-Man flying up your butt and getting really, really big all of a sudden.

  • Pitcrew

    One of my coping mechanisms since college has always been the ability to MU or do something else 'on the side' during work.

    I would do my work (whatever it may be) and then respond to a pose...etc..etc. It always seemed to help me focus (sometimes hyper-focus, yes that is a thing) on my job more until it was time for my next pose. I honestly think it helped my productivity rather than hinder it as one might think.

    It has been a real struggle with my new job, since I no longer have the ability to MU from work, nor look at websites, facebook, emails, whatever that the company has decided to block. I've resorted to reading a lot more news, and also logging in from my phone to just at least chat when I can (but that sucks as well, since the reception in my office is piss poor).

    Thankfully, it seems that I might be able to work from home a few days a week, so that may help some once that becomes a reality.

  • Pitcrew

    I'm not diagnosed with any of it. I'm not sure I should be or not - I've never been to a behavioralist and the only time I went to a therapist I was diagnosed with OCD but we didn't get too deeply into my unique ways. But damned if every time one of my friends links an article on ADD I don't think - wow, they could be describing my life.

    Mostly I cope by militant scheduling and a fuckton of guilt for not doing everything I intended to do. If I schedule 30 things and get 15 of them done though, that's still more than most people so no one ever notices how much I fucked off while doing those 15 things.

  • Picking up where we were, here is some info to help people be on the same page.

    The DSM is the official diagnostics manual used by the majority of the western world. It was last updated in 2013 to the DSM-5.

    ADD was rolled into ADHD in 2013 when they published the DSM-5. Now ADHD has three types: Inattentive, Hyperactive/impulsive, and Combined. My understanding is part of the change was because the treatment and cause are the same.

    Screening for whether a child has ADHD (and other mental health factors such as Anxiety) is only enacted in one of three situations.

    1. When there has been a disruption of the classroom or the student's learning ability such that an IEP (Individualized Education Program) is called for, and they recognize there is a potential mental health component to the need.
    2. When a parent seeks independent evaluation for their child. The child must demonstrate a need for evaluation, they will not evaluate children just to check. This means the ADHD must be measurably interfering with their lives. A child who appears to be successfully coping with/self-managing their ADHD will be refused evaluation as standard practice.
    3. When a child has undergone a severe trauma.

  • First pre-coffee-kicking-in observation from me...

    ...pretty sure one of the reasons I love MU is that it being text-only makes it so much easier to focus on the words. Games with visuals? I get lost in/distracted by the visuals and forget the game part, and promptly die or get lost or eaten by robots/etc. (I can watch that stuff with someone else doing it as a zen background noise thing like whoa, though, and really enjoy that.)

    Limiting it to text helps. It just does. And with wikis being prevalent now, there's still a visual reference and creative aspect. Wiki is like... the perfect blend of 'art + code' for me, since it involves problem-solving and visual creative foo thrown into a blender on frappe.

  • @Darinelle said in The ADD/ADHD Thread (cont'd from Peeves):

    If I schedule 30 things and get 15 of them done though, that's still more than most people so no one ever notices how much I fucked off while doing those 15 things.

    I've said this exact thing so many times. Damn if I don't feel guilty about the other 15 though.

  • @stabeest said in MU* Gripes and Peeves:

    I have been begging for YEARS for an evaluation because I could see how she was suffering and no one took me seriously.

    Taking from Peeves after this went up, but this deserves its own complain thread in general. I had to walk on water to get the work down for my kid with Dyslexia as well for IEP and educational stuff to get system help in the schools. I flipped my lid on them last year, cause it they finally tested at year end then said yep, there ya go, but we have to retest at beginning of next school year cause of the time slip, like wtf, why'd you have us test now if it doesn't count.

  • Pitcrew

    Here's one of the best/worst coping strategies:

    Have a big, important, long-term project.

    See, if I need to do the dishes (ferex), I'll putz around on message boards and stream TV and put it off.

    But when there was a term paper I needed to be writing, well, I'll get to it... but man those dishes need washing, I'll get to the research as soon as I'm done.

    Doesn't help with the big stuff, but otherwise, it keeps me super productive!

  • @insomniac7809

    There is a quote of Bill Gates, saying he'd always hire a lazy person to do a difficult job. Why? Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.

    Over time I've come to believe what Bill Gates saw as lazy was just ADHD. People who are more creative than willing to do drudgery.

  • Pitcrew


    The rules and regulations schools have to follow for special education are the worst (speaking from a teacher stand point.) I'm not legally allowed to say things to parents in many cases because I'm not "qualified." The best thing a parent can do is realize that in so many ways schools have their hands tied but the one thing that will untie them is a vocal parent who pushes till their kid gets what they need. This includes calling every. single. day. until the test is scheduled or finding an outside source to test. It includes showing up at the school and being willing to sit in the office till someone is able to meet with you. It absolutely includes sitting down with that god only knows how long pages of procedural safeguards and reading every single sentence. It's going to pit parent vs school in some cases, but when it comes down to it, the kid getting what they need is what everyone wants. Just... the system sucks.

  • @Lotherio @silverfox

    My oldest son went through over a dozen IEPs and was misdiagnosed three times over three years before we got an external expert to diagnose and treat for ADHD. It was part of the reason I did all of this research and re-evaluated myself, the realization both of what the impacts on him were, how they mirrored my younger life, and how much the treatment is helping him.

  • @Lotherio I am so sorry that you and your kid are having to deal with that. It's exhausting on so many levels. I'm pretty sure that my school system is very aware of me in a not great way because I've been a vocal pain in the ass for the past five years. Even then, even being Mama Bear af, it wasn't until she was having screaming meltdowns in class that her doctor agreed to do the testing.

  • Pitcrew

    Something else to keep in mind:

    Most schools cannot, legally, nor medically, "diagnose" anything. "Specific Learning Disability" is what typically gets used by schools so that they aren't giving a medical diagnosis. A diagnosis has to come from a licensed medical practitioner. Most schools have person with a degree in social work, or special education, or counseling, but they are NOT a doctor.

  • @silverfox The in-system diagnosis was from a professional provided by the state, and part of establishing the IEP. Part of the problem was the professional didn't have the time to do a proper diagnosis, and gave it based on limited observations. This will vary state to state, but in our case it just caused more problems as they started trying to treat things he didn't have.

  • Pitcrew

    "Specific Learning Disability" - this is why I never ever ever got tested for anything. I'm a phenomenal test taker (whether I know the subject or not) and I can learn anything I have an interest in - and my interests are wide and varied.

    Try talking to me about history though and I've suddenly tuned the fuck out forever.


    Learning things I hate always mimics my brother's pattern of learning (he WAS diagnosed with ADHD) - but I was always interested in science, math, english, creative writing, sociology, psychology, art, language - these things fascinate me. Give me a history book though and I've suddenly read a page 16x and have no idea what it said. So the older I get the more I think that he and I probably struggled with the same thing but I lucked out by having much broader interests in knowledge that correlated to things taught in school.

    And where he would tap a pencil or make noise to get rid of his twitchiness? I did silent things that couldn't be tracked. (Like squeezing my toes in patterns which is impossible to see with shoes on.)

  • I didn't get a diagnosis until I was 30.

    I grew up with a father whose opinion of mental health (and related) matters ran from:
    'You'll get over it.'
    'You're doing this on purpose to ruin the family.'
    and forcing me to go through exorcisms because demons.

    Finding out I had ADD and am on the spectrum... explained a lot. I mean, it doesn't fix things, but it helped. Because I stopped feeling like this worthless loser who couldn't handle what came naturally and easily to everyone else.

    I have to have music while I drive or else I get distracted. I have to keep lists (lists upon lists upon lists) for everything or else my day-to-day life falls apart. I have so may coping mechanisms at this point.

    I still haven't tried medication for the ADD. I only just got on anxiety meds last year (after so many doctors insisted that I just needed to 'give the anti-depressants more time'). I did try talking to one doctor briefly about it, explaining how some days I just can't fucking cope and how I was afraid for my job (some days I'd do great; others I'd get jack and shit done because of an inability to focus on any one thing at all) and her response was: 'You just need more sleep.'

    I haven't had the emotional strength to go through that again (and right now I don't have the insurance, so...). My ADD isn't a 'lack of sleep' goddamnit.

  • @Auspice said in The ADD/ADHD Thread (cont'd from Peeves):

    forcing me to go through exorcisms because demons.


  • Pitcrew

    I am still struggling since my diagnosis. I am not really better at time management, or accomplishing things I need to get done, as I am old and changing behaviour and habits is hard and takes forever.


    It has helped me immensely to have a Neuroscience doctor tell me : You are not just lazy. Your brain is atypical.

    I went through all the usual ADHD inattentive struggles, including the time my dad called me a 'worthless N-", and when I looked confused he clarified it had nothing to do with race. It was just what you called someone who was "lazy and worthless".

  • @Kanye-Qwest / @Auspice I'm as glad to know you as I'm glad not to know your dad.

  • @Selerik said in The ADD/ADHD Thread (cont'd from Peeves):

    @Auspice said in The ADD/ADHD Thread (cont'd from Peeves):

    forcing me to go through exorcisms because demons.


    Ultra conservative religious parents.

    Every 'negative' behavior we (mostly I - my brothers got the good ol' 'boys will be boys' outlook) had as kids was met with a 'must be demons.' I think ultimately it was easier on my father's ego. My father's priorities in life are:

    His reputation / how others view him
    His job
    His faith
    My mother
    Me and my siblings

    We've always, always come last. So whenever we (esp. me, as the oldest) did something that upset the order, that risked (in his eyes) making him look bad... it was a big deal. And I think blaming it on 'demons' was his way of looking at everyone in the church and going 'I'm a good man and a good father so this is Satan targeting me and trying to make things hard for me!' rather than ever having to admit to his own faults.

    This is the man who, the last time I really saw them (not counting the whirlwind 2 days of my grandmother's funeral) was when they visited me here in TX and during a few days in San Antonio, he would not walk with my mother, who walks slower than he does. He kept just steamrolling ahead, leaving her behind. And oh man she looked so dejected.

    I called him out on it. Like, dude, why won't you walk with your wife?! And he just whined that she walks too slow for him yaddayadda. Here we are at the Alamo and every. other. family/couple. is walking together. Not him. It's just me and my mom while he storms off ahead. And I tried again later after she'd told me that he was always like that. Just a look at her, these are the years you two get to spend together after your kids are grown up. You took this trip together (I was like, the tail end of a road trip). Please actually pay attention to my mother.

    He responded like any grown male wou- no, wait, he didn't. He stomped around like a dejected child and 'proved' he could walk faster than us by sitting on a bench and glaring while she and I began the walk back to the hotel (which we purposefully took our time of, enjoying the weather).... then taking out his phone, using GPS to find the best route, and rushing back. We got there right after he did, covered in sweat as he was, with him going: "See! This is why I can't wait for you!"

    So, yeah. My dad. Real winner. And was convinced that my mental health issues and struggles as a kid/teenager were the product of DEMONS because otherwise he'd have to admit there was something legitimately wrong with me.

    After a suicidal episode at the age of 15, when I finally got my first trip to a therapist (hard to when you're 15 and live in an area with no public transit: sort of rely on your parents at that point)... He had to drive me on my 2nd visit. I got in the car after the appointment and he looks at me and goes: 'So you're fixed now, right? You're not going to try making the family look bad anymore?' Because, again, he framed my attempt to kill myself as an inconvenience on him and a risk to his public image.

    And right now I have to work with him to plan this surprise visit to my mother. I just keep that mantra: it's for her it's for her it's for her.

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