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adult son with ADHD out of control!
MOMisALLheHAS posted:
My son is 27, has been ADHD since a young boy, but not medicated. His life in the last several years has been the classic of adult ADHD, possibly now into bi-polar, but even though it has spiraled out of control in the last couple of years, he is really just too sick, mentally to even see that it is his illness that is taking his life away! As of now, he has lost literally everything EXCEPT his beating heart, and he still will NOT accept that it his illness that has caused it all! He has no more friends, romantic relationships end, lost his children, no job, no money, no car, no license, no home, his entire family, except for me, won't be around him, and yet. . . he STILL doesn't see it. He is not only in denial, but truly "sees" that it is some curse over him, or that the world is just so out to get him that he doesn't get a fair chance to make a life for himself. He won't go to a shelter, won't go into treatment, tells me that I am the ONLY one that can help him, but I won't, even though I WILL and WANT to, but what he needs is not what he wants help with! I have contacted Crisis centers, the PD has been involved, and will be again, but still, his suicidal threats are there, and time is not on my side!!! What else can I do????

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What more can I do?? I have no legal ability to act on his behalf, but he needs someone to make decisions on his behalf right now.
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Gina Pera responded:
I'm so sorry to hear this. Unfortunately, when ADHD remains untreated for years, the symptoms can sometimes grow worse and often new symptoms appear.

Partially this can be due to the stress of living with untreated ADHD "fallout" -- being late all the time, being chewed out, fired, rejected, etc. But part of it is due to bad habits, too -- drinking too much coffee to stay away or ingesting marijuana to relax. Insomnia and other sleep disorders can contribute, too. As can co-existing conditions such as conduct disorder and bipolar disorder.

I wonder why he has never received treatment, despite being diagnosed many years ago. Was an effort made to educate him on what ADHD is -- and isn't? Are you, his mother, now aware of the same?

It is important, if you want to try to reach someone with "in denial" ADHD to truly understand their experience. If all they hear is criticism and admonishments to buckle down, etc. that can drive a wedge in the relationship and, more importantly, make you seem as just one more person who doesn't "get it."

It might help, too, if you learn about the physiological basis for "denial." It might truly be, as you suggest, that he doesn't see that he, as opposed to the rest of the world, is the problem. More specifically, his untreated psychiatric condition is the problem.

I'm not boasting when I say that my book (Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.?) was the first consumer book on ADHD to explain in-depth the reasons for "denial" and how to help someone out of it. I am grateful to the international expert in this area, Xavier Amador, Ph.D, for helping me to write those chapters.

Best of luck,
Sallizar responded:
My name is Joel. im 23 years old. I have been diagnosed with a severe case of ADHD since before i was in kindergarten. i have been taking medication my entire life. i also have severe case of depression the runs in my family and has plagued me for as long as i have memories. lucky for my family the depression skipped a generation but i received it from both my grandfathers, now both dead. they had depression until their dieing day and i probably will as well, although i dont believe i will live nearly as long as they did. my ADHD has caused me to fail in every academic endeavor i have ever attempted. my life is terrible, im suicidal. im getting treatment. i take my meds, im on them right now. my last suicidal though was 5 minutes ago. i hate my life. i constantly ask myself this one question, and its a question i believe a lot of ADHD people that are in positions like your son and me ask themselves and might help you understand him and help him. the question is "What is the point of my existence?" the one thing to keep me from taking the leap that i can never come back from is that there are too many people that would be crushed if i was gone. ask yourself what future do you see for your son. when you figure out what bright hope there is for him out there tell him. god if i could answer that question for myself. all i see for myself in the future is blackness. ive been to 3 colleges since i graduated from high school. i was a bad student in high school because of my disibility. in college every year got progressivly worse. ive dropped out now. i want to go back but i dont see the point. i can barly will myself to go to class when im enrolled. i cant concentrate in class when i manage to build up enough willpower to go. for me i feel that im just too broken of a person to succeed in life. im a proud person i dont like asking for help. i hit a low a couple months back i got on the phone and called my mom i said goodbye. i made my peace with god. death does not fear me. nothing fear me anymore. if i could just find the answer to my question mabey i wouldnt feel so dead inside. your son wont magically find the willpower to better himself till he finds a reason to. and until you answer that question or he figures it out there will be no improvement. so my advice to you is think hard on that question, or enjoy the time you have left with your son.
Whatathought replied to Sallizar's response:
Salizar, I feel empathy for you. I have had to take medication for my depression. Stay strong. No one ever told me when I was young that I must stay strong and brave and stay true to myself. You might have ADHD but you have some valuable
qualities that you have still to discover or rediscover. Life is a journey. Has anything in your past given you joy, or have you had a passion for doing something? I go to a group meeting of
ADD and there is a national group. When I was younger, I was constantly overwhelmed by life's troubles but I learned to
protect and cherish who I am. You are not alone. Seek and you will find a way. Best wishes.
CreativeConnection replied to Sallizar's response:
You sound like a very sensitive caring person. Is there something that you really really enjoy like music, skateboarding, drawing or even video games? Start researching the things you like and take some time every day to do it. Perhaps one day you will take a class or moonlight with one of your interests to transform into work. right now, perhaps traditional school education might not be for you..what about a course on line? Home study? I know it is difficult to center upon an answer as I have a son who is well into adulthood and has tried and failed many many times as well as being in trouble with the law which has not only hurt himself, but he made these mistakes and now it is more difficult for him to succeed in employment. Be thankful that you have no problems with your background in public files. Believe me, there is always something to be grateful about. in fact, my son stands to lose his license now for a very long time in our state and we hope he can hold onto his current job. However, even though he was a D student in high school after almost 7 years of trying at a community college he will be graduating with an associates degree in 2 weeks. Although he doesn't feel like it we are going to celebrate this accomplishment anyway. He is talking about going to further his education for a BA degree. We did not think he would finish the 2 year. So this is huge!
I hope you think about how creative you can really be and think back to a time when you felt really happy at something - something you did yourself - and try that soon. Journal about it or blog ... you will feel just a small bit better and that is what counts. Do not dwell on your past perceived failures - you were learning at college some things you did not know before.
Thanks for letting me write back to you.
Creative Connection

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