Three months prior to my bipolar diagnoses my depressive lows steady increased in intensity. Leaving my house for any reason became terrifying. The only tools I had were Adderall and alcohol. Neither ever did enough. On New Years, it struck me, I wouldn’t make it through another year. I couldn’t. It was another twelve days before the term “bipolar” entered my life. My desperate plea below was an attempt to find answers, or help, or anything.
In second grade I started fantasizing about hurting myself. Largely for attention, someone would be rude to me and I’d think, I’ll break my arm, they will be sorry. By third grade I moved on to suicide. It really has never stopped since then. I never felt like I was depressed because my entire existence was depressed. Anyways, I got ADHD testing done about five years ago and was also diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder.
It is difficult for me to distinguish between the two. I am often sad, but a large part of my sadness is my inability to ever live in the moment. I posted this in the ADHD subreddit, but am hoping for some more suggestions, ideas, help — anything. I’m at the point where I am not sure if I am going to make it anymore, I’m willing to try pretty much anything.
I was first diagnosed with ADHD in fourth grade and put on ritalin. It interfered with my sleep and appetite. My mother didn’t really believe in ADHD, despite what my teachers and doctors said, I was just being a boy. She used the side-effects as an excuse to take me off the meds.
It wasn’t until my first job that I thought about ADHD again. Due to difficulties at work, and since I was on my own insurance, I went and got psychological examination. I was diagnosed with ADHD again. Not surprising. I am also dyslexic, have an IQ in the 130’s and have several Autistic family members, all of which are correlated with ADHD. I was also diagnosed with depression, another thing my family doesn’t believe in, I regularly have suicidal thoughts, dating back to third grade, especially when under stress.
I was put on Adderall, it was a miracle drug. I could focus on what I pleased. It also shut out all the other stuff. Not only could I go for a run, but I could go for a run without making a list of all the things I needed to do and then beating myself up about them. Living in the moment, was new to me, my life and mood was on a drastic upswing. Four years later, I don’t know what to do. I started working on an engineering degree, just at the community college, taking night classes so I can keep my current job. I enjoyed the rigor and challenge of the work. Last semester, I had to drop out.
The meds no longer work like they used to. We have slowly increased the doses, I’ve been on Adderall, Adderall XR and Vyvanse. I will openly admit, when first put on the medication, I took more than my dose. I did so in order to achieve that euphoric state. However, as we had to increase my dose, I stopped this behavior, I didn’t want to lose what the pills did for me.
Still, my tolerance adjusted. Currently, I am prescribed 60mg of Vyvanse and 5mg of Adderall. For depression, I am on 300mg of Effexor and Deplin.
My partner hides the medication from me. I get my exact dose each morning and that is it. For the first few hours, I feel like me. Well, the me I have gotten to know. However, by hour four, I start to drag. As the pill releases I get a bit of myself back, at about six hours. But that is short lived.
I have an excellent relationship with my doctor, I absolutely do not lie or attempt to deceive her. She is aware of my poor behavior when I started on the medication and aware that my partner is now in control of it. We have toyed with the dosage in the past two months, but nothing has really helped.
I started also seeing a psychologist, he has no new solutions. I see two counselors and have googled my heart out, but don’t know what to do.
It looks like, the medications affect will slowly diminish, and I will go back to being that person I used to be. Instead of getting up to cook dinner, I will sit and think, “what is the point, there are seven billion people on this planet, none of us matter.” Instead of writing this, I will think, “No one will read it anyways, just like that poem in seventh grade when….”.
What scares me the most — I am not sure I can back. Life was such a struggle, I didn’t even understand. My ADHD directly contributes to my depression. I have all of these things I want to do, things I know I am capable of doing, but I usually don’t even attempt them. And if I do, I give up halfway through.
Part of me wishes I never had this. Because, I will forever mourn the person I could have been. The accomplishments and contributions I could have made. I have desperately looked for solutions, but as far as I can tell, the gig is up.
I have no desire to start meditating, then hopefully I can be 10% of the person I was on medication. I have no desire to spend the next ten years attempting to force myself to be someone that is so entirely foreign to the non-medicated me.
Living life the way I used to be is fine during the evenings, or on a Saturday shopping trip. Living life that way permanently? That is unacceptable. I am tired of fighting through days. I am tired of constantly working on not thinking about that and push towards this. I just want to live through my damn days. I just want to live, and not focus on surviving.
Over the next year, or so, it looks like I will slowly lose more and more of the person I have grown to know. He is a much nicer person, that person rarely thinks about how worthless their life is.
Yet, as I become the old me, I will continue to evaluate life. My fear is, it seems increasingly likely, that the least painful option will be to opt out, to carry out one of those life ending plans.
This is so much longer than it was suppose to be. I guess it is nice to say this stuff out loud. It isn’t supposed to just be bitching. I should go back and proofread, especially since I am dyslexic, but I rather spend what precious time I have left on this pill, doing something I (well the me I know now) enjoy.
I am scared.