I DO have ADHD.

First, obligatory link.

I have ADHD. I have all the symptoms of ADHD. I can tell you right now that I do not want to have ADHD. Why do you people insist on being convinced that I’m making it up? ADHD exists. It’s not a case of, “Oh, your parents never disciplined you properly,” or “You’re making it up as an easy excuse for your behavior.” I have ADHD. If you doubt that, you can bite me.

My younger brother has been diagnosed with Tourette’s syndrome. Neither the diagnosis or the validity of his mental state are never called into question. If you tell someone that knows what Tourette’s is that he has the syndrome, they will know that he is not exactly like other kids, but he can function reasonably well. Most of all, they won’t think “Oh, he’s making it up.”
Why can’t the same go for me?

Why do people constantly say “You’re making that up,” or “ADHD is a scam by drug companies,” or “If you tried hard enough, I bet you could concentrate,” when I tell them I have ADHD? Why can’t they just fucking believe me?

And while this digresses a bit, I’m also sick of all the jokes about ADHD. I’ve good a sense of humor as anyone, but I now immediately know that if ADD is mentioned anywhere in a joke, the punchline is always (always) “Wanna ride bikes?” Really. Make up something new.

Another thing that irks me is when people decide they have “undiagnosed” ADD.
“Oh, I have ADD too!” (Wow! You can join our super secret club! Wanna learn the freaking handshake?)
“Really? When were you diagnosed?”
“Oh, I never got diagnosed. I just, ya know, know.”
Ah. You know. Well, that fucking settles that. Aslan had a good rant a week back about people self diagnosing themselves with Asperger’s. The same, unfortunately, happens with ADD and ADHD. It’s like they believe they now belong to some exclusive clique, now that they’ve decided they have ADD.

In conclusion, ADD/ADHD exist. I’m living proof of it. Make new jokes (or just stop telling the same one over and over). And stop fucking self diagnosing yourselves. If you really think you do have ADD/ADHD, go to a psychiatrist(or psychologist. I’m never sure which is which.), don’t just proclaim “I have ADD!” because you read the DSM.

I both agree and disagree with you. I am certain you have ADHD. I am certain my little brother has ADHD. At the same time, I think it’s fairly likely that there are a large number of kids being labeled with ADD by psychologists or school counselors or whoever who do not have ADD. So I understand the misunderstanding that arises when someone only sees the neighbor’s kid put on Ritalin because his mother would rather believe he has a disease than the fact that he’s just a hyper kid who needs some discipline, and doesn’t know someone who has true ADHD.

Really, I think you just have to ignore the jokes and educate people where you can. ADD is always going to have people making jokes about it, just like Alzheimers’s and Tourette’s – it’s an easy target for the same lame joke. But you can make a difference – I noticed you didn’t post in the linked General Questions thread. I think your insight would be valuable. If you only let people without personal experience discuss the subject, how will anyone learn anything?

So, a guy with ADD walks into a bar.

Shoulda took his Ritalin…

I have ADHD too and it pisses me off when people say it doesn’t exist.

But I find the “riding bikes” joke kinda funny. It’s not meant to be nasty. Sometimes, I HAVE to laugh at my troubles, it’s how I get through the day.

I agree that the joke was funny, the first few times I heard it. But it’s gotten old. Very old.

OK. So you have ADD or ADHD, so now you deal with it. I know well it is real, not that I have been “officially” diagnosed with it. Actually, maybe I have. I was a hyperactive child who took ritalin, which nowadays could mean a handful of possible afflictions. Plus, I do not have a great attention span.

I knew this guy. A nice enough guy, but he was unable to keep quiet during meetings of a group of that I was a member. He made frequent outbursts while others had the floor. When finally challenged with this, he used ADD as an excuse. No promise of changing the behavior. No real apologies for the behavior. We knew he was otherwise a good guy, but we were tired of his spontaneous outbursts interrupting others, and using his disorder as an excuse gained sympathy from no one.

We were sympathetic, but one has to take responsibility for his actions.

OK, can someone please explain the bicycle joke for me?

See, perhaps that guy shouldn’t have participated in the group. If he can’t be a member of the group without disrupting it, he should have left. And he should have apologized anyway, in my opinion.

One example would be [sub]Sorry XWalrus2[/sub]:
“How many ADD people does it take to screw in a lightbulb?”
“I don’t know, how many?”
“Let’s ride bikes!”

…the joke being that the ADD people can’t focus on lightbulb-screwing long enough to complete it.

Maybe ADD or ADHD was a reason for his outbursts. I don’t think he needs an excuse. Neither should he always have to withdraw for the society of others to avoid offending people. Why in the world would he want sympathy? What made you think that – because he gave you a reason? I honestly don’t understand.

XWalrus2, I think that I can understand some of your frustrations. But I don’t understand why it bothers you that people self-diagnose. Can you clarify?

Zoe, my WAG as to why XWalrus2 doesn’t like self-diagnosis is because it sort of “cheapens” the disorder for the people who really do have it. It makes it easier for doctors to diagnose, not in that the symptoms will be easier to recognize, but in that more kids will be diagnosed because their moms will insist they have it. Also, if people who don’t really have ADD or ADHD go around saying they do, others will be able to see them function in a particular situation and wonder why people like XWalrus2 or Guinistasia or someone else who really does have it can’t function with the same ease.

Let me add the disclaimer that I do not have ADD or ADHD and I don’t know anyone who does. This is purely my speculation as to why XWalrus2 and others don’t like self-diagnosis.

This is the part that pisses me off. It was not easy to get my diagnosis - I was over 30, and obviously not hyperactive. I was near suicidal before I found a doctor who would even look into the possibility of ADD for me. I know medical doctors who refuse to admit that this condition even exists. I underwent test after test, filled in forms galore, and spoke to no less than four therapists after my diagnosis. I was in therapy for four years, unlearning behavior patterns that I’d adopted as a result of my ADD. I fought with insurance companies, pharmacists and my own internal medicine doctor to get on the meds. Yet everyone claims they know someone whose PARENT or TEACHER put them on Ritalin, as though this medication is available at every White Hen Pantry right next to the One-A-Days. Ritalin (as well as Adderol, Concerta, and AFAIK all similar medications) is a controlled substance - if you have a script, you have to have it on paper, present it in person and collect it within 24 hours.

I do not deny that there’s been an upsurge in prescriptions - there is some evidence to suggest that - but the idea that a parent can waltz into a doctor’s office and demand Ritalin for their kid because it’s easier than disciplining him is so far out of my experience, and ANY experience I have ever heard from ANY reputable source that it’s absolutely laughable.

(Note please: Giraffe - I do not claim that you are one of these people who insists that meds are being handed out willy-nilly. I understood your post.)

I do have ADD, just diagnosed this past summer. I think you’re right about it cheapening the seriousness of the disease, as if it’s so easy to spot and treat.

Another thing that bothers me are the scare stories about being on Ritalin. I don’t doubt that it can have some nasty side effects to some people, but from all I’ve read and heard from medical doctors, Ritalin has helped far more people than it’s hurt, like any drug. I just get pissed at people, who upon hearing I’m taking it (doing my drug evaluations now) get this oh-so-worried look and tell me some tale that their aunt’s cousin’s brother’s neighbor’s paperboy’s child took it and had all sorts of problems. :mad:

Will most doctors do it? Probably not. Will some? Of course.Will doctors who write prescriptions at a parent’s request get a reputation for doing so? Almost certainly.

My cousin’s experience differs from yours. The teacher suggested that her child might need Ritalin, cousin went off to the pediatrician, and returned with a prescription. No tests, no evaluation, no therapist.

My mind was recently changed on the matter of ADHD. After I made a careless and disrespectful remark on another board, someone linked me to this site. I began to research the matter more thoroughly and learned a lot about how stupid I had been.

“I dont think he needs an excuse(?)” Now I honestly don’t understand.

So you think he was perfectly justified in his behavior because he had ADD? No one really cared about any excuse at all. No excuse was needed nor desired. We did care that he was making it difficult for those who had the floor from speaking.

The ideal response would have been, “I’m sorry. I will make an effort to change my offending behavior. Thank you for pointing it out.” You seem to be saying that having ADD or ADHD is a perfectly valid excuse to constantly interrupt people who have the floor at a meeting, or possibly engage in a variety of social foibles without consequence. It did not matter to any of us any excuse he may have had, we wanted him to change his behavior. He wasn’t really offensive, remember we thought he was basically a good guy, but his constant outbursts were annoying, and he was using ADD as an excuse to not even attempt to change. He was never told to withdraw from the group.
Maybe “sympathy” was not exactly the right word. Would “understanding” be more appropriate? Personally, I feel you are splitting the finest of hairs on that one. To answer your last question, "Why in the world would he want sympathy? What made you think that – because he gave you a reason?

One can write volumes attempting to answer the first above question. For the second one, the Short answer is yes.

I do like your question to Walrus. Likely many people who have self-diagnosed themselves really have ADD. Just because others have issues does not lessen your issues.

Talk about timing – I just found out about that site earlier this week! I looked around at a few things there, and it gave me a new understanding of AD/HD.

I was diagnosed with AD/HD about 20 years ago. I’ve been treating it with the favorite drug until last year, when I switched to a new non-stimulant medication. But only in the last few months have I finally been coming to understand the behavioral side of the issue. At long last, I’m starting into behavioral therapy to address the core issues that keep fscking up my life.

The CHADD site is helping me by providing points about the research that’s been done in the past 20 years. I noted in particular that AD/HD has two types (plus a hybrid of the two), and I fall more into one type than the other. So I need a new diagnosis, consistent with the current body of research.

Freyr, AD/HD is NOT a disease, it’s a disorder. “Disease” implies something that can be medically treated. AD/HD requires a change in your own perceptions to improve your interactions with the world around you.

I know how you feel, XWalrus2.

I was diagnosed with ADD and non-verbal learning disabilities when I was around eight years old. I’m 22 now, and I’ve had to put up with the same crap. A couple of summers ago I took a course in child psychology. The professor insisted that learning disabilities were a myth and that they could be “cured” by having smaller class sizes. Appallingly enough, a lot of my fellow classmates agreed with him. I tried to explain to them that my disability wasn’t going to go away, as much as I would like it to, only to be told that I was “wrong” and that I had been “tricked” into believing I had this disability by my doctors and teachers, when in reality my parents and I have had to fight the school system all the way up through high school for me to get proper accomodations. Once class had gotten out I burst into tears. I almost dropped the course but I decided that instead of giving up I would stick it out and whenever possible try to educate people on the realities of having ADD.

My mom also has been diagnosed with ADD, and I take comfort in the fact that at least these days there is a name for what we have and that there are efforts to help people with ADD cope. When my mom was younger, she was labeled an “underachiever” and grew up thinking that she was a bad person somehow because of this.

Don’t let the naysaysers get you down, XWalrus2.

I know how you feel, XWalrus2.

I was diagnosed with ADD and non-verbal learning disabilities when I was around eight years old. I’m 22 now, and I’ve had to put up with the same crap. A couple of summers ago I took a course in child psychology. The professor insisted that learning disabilities were a myth and that they could be “cured” by having smaller class sizes. Appallingly enough, a lot of my fellow classmates agreed with him. I tried to explain to them that my disability wasn’t going to go away, as much as I would like it to, only to be told that I was “wrong” and that I had been “tricked” into believing I had this disability by my doctors and teachers, when in reality my parents and I have had to fight the school system all the way up through high school for me to get proper accomodations. Once class had gotten out I burst into tears. I almost dropped the course but I decided that instead of giving up I would stick it out and whenever possible try to educate people on the realities of having ADD.

My mom also has been diagnosed with ADD, and I take comfort in the fact that at least these days there is a name for what we have and that there are efforts to help people with ADD cope. When my mom was younger, she was labeled an “underachiever” and grew up thinking that she was a bad person somehow because of this disability.

Don’t let the naysaysers get you down, XWalrus2.

You know, there seems to be a hell of a LOT of people who apparently have these Attention Deficit thingys. Rather too many. It seems to me that if it’s truly at that apparent level, it’s not a disorder so much as a part of humanity.

I believe it exists. I don’t think people should be so ready to use it as an excuse for being irritating or a slacker. When you recognise you have a problem, work with it and around it, don’t just use it as an excuse to get away with shitty behaviour.

As long as you are doing the right thing by it, then I’m happy.