One of my kids was diagnosed with ADHD as a full grown adult. They struggled with getting shit done and ANXIETY for most of their life. I felt bad my hubs and I never even considered they might have ADHD. Get this though, I think they’re the type that can hyperfixate cuz they got into Harvard, but at a tremendous cost to their mental health. One Psychiatrist refused to give them meds cuz they must not have it so bad since they got into Harvard! I wanted to to tell this Psychiatrist to take a long walk on a fucking short pier! WTF?!?! Does my kid’s life have to be in ruins to warrant medication??? Fuck you!!! My kid has a different Psychiatrist now who will prescribe the meds they need. Good for you J. Fell!

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Dec 17, 2021·edited Dec 18, 2021

I was diagnosed at 44, and it changed the way I looked at myself. I was no longer "smart, but lazy" It made a world of difference, thanks for sharing!

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I got diagnosed a month ago, at 48. The lazy/dumb tag I wore my whole life has caused a lot of damage. I wonder where I would be if I had been diagnosed and treated as a kid.

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Mar 13, 2022Liked by James Fell

I was finally diagnosed with ADHD as a 34-year-old woman. I always hyperfocused on school; I excelled when GPA's started being compared, and competition drove me to the top of my class. I was outwardly "successful," and yet the underlying struggle was never fixed. Poor sleep and messy rooms became anxiety, bipolar disorder, hospital stays. I couldn't function. Still can't. But at least now I know where to start digging, how to start correcting the core issue instead of only treating the resulting symptoms. Thank you for sharing your story. It gives me hope, and it's good to know I'm not alone.

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I am crying reading this. ALL of it is me. Add in SuperBlack syndrome and here we are.

I found my old grade school report cards and consistently it was ‘Rob doesn’t apply himself ‘ or ‘Rob doesn’t finish his assignments.’

I have asked my doctor to test me, but I am afraid he’s just going to say I have already developed coping mechanisms. We shall see.

Congrats on your self discovery. I look forward to hearing about your continued journey.

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Seriously??? I’m on Ritalin LA as well and you just wrote my story, just without the marriage and kids and a little less trauma because you were able to assimilate better than me. Welcome to the ADHD family, we brains are Flawsome! Oh and if you have any questions about my journey, happy to talk. I’m all, “I don't want anyone else to go through the same shit that I have!”.

Onwards and upwards James!! 💪💪

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Mar 15, 2022Liked by James Fell

My childhood sounds just like James’ description. I would add, for me, there were too many times when I was in class, seemingly attentive, but I find out later that I was supposed to work on something but had no knowledge of the assignment; or perhaps the topic being discussed became lost to me. Classmates and teachers would always think it strange, because I was in the room with the rest of them; how could I not know what was going on? Imagine MY confusion. I felt stupid. I became resigned to that possibility very early on. But I too hyperfocus on things, usually not things that seem beneficial, constructive, or profitable…

I was finally diagnosed in my mid-20’s, went on Ritalin and later stopped for a few years, went back and tried different prescriptions. Now I rely on Concerta and it’s perfect, *for me*.

I attempted to accomplish something in college, having enrolled or been accepted no less than 12 times to different institutions. I lasted not even a semester in any of them. However, I had a job which really captivated my interest. I worked with my hands, learned new machinery and software, and worked up to VP. So that tells me that I must have done something right.

Though I am not prone to negative self-talk, even now at my age (mid-50’s) I still hear that faint thrumming, lurking beneath everything I do, or don’t do:

'Stupid. Stupid...'

It really helps to have a supportive spouse who is self-sustaining. I do things that are productive because I want to show up at my best for her sake, as well as mine. The thought of being a burden to someone truly horrifies me. Also, I usually avoid talking about ADHD (might sound like an excuse or copout to “normies”), but I do acknowledge and discuss the coping mechanisms I use.

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Holy shixtiffle. I'm about 73 kinds of validated right now. I continue to gravitate to folks like... Like you... That seem to... Think, or operate, similarly to me. And your story...

Well, I'm not going to make this about me; I'll carve out my own space in the cosmos for that... Eventually. On the meantime... Bravo, sir. Or kudos, or hugs, or fanfukkintastic fabulations on your person and spirit for... Well, for being you, and kicking arse at ithat... In that particular you sort of way.

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Mar 17, 2022Liked by James Fell

I am 52 and you've just described me, almost to a tee. Apart from the fitness thing (unfortunately). But definitely the fixation and anxiety. I medicate for anxiety, which has really helped that, but I've wondered more than once whether ADHD may be a factor. My daughter is on the ASD spectrum, very mildly, but hers was a medical diagnosis. I've never had one. Maybe it's time I at least asked the question.

Thank you for sharing this.

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Feb 8, 2022Liked by James Fell

I'm proud of you James... I finally got diagnosed last year at 40. Too bad my psychiatrist is focused more on me exercising and reading the Bible than to make sure I have Mydayis, sooo... I'm kinda stuck right now. I have other "disorders" but it's similar to your story: ADHD exacerbates the other disorders then it turns into a domino effect. Reading your story helped me keep hope that things can get better; I just gotta dust myself off and try again... Keep up the good work!

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Fuck ya!!! Hyper-focus and lazy, all me. 😎 Such people rock the world, so merci for sharing.

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I was diagnosed at 45 after my six year old son got his diagnosis, and everything I read sounded WAY too familiar regarding ADHD. I'm ADD though, so the hyperactivity side was never a thing. Needless to say it was the most life-changing thing I've been through personally, and I'm a much different person now that I'm properly medicated. Thanks for sharing.

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Diagnosed with ADHD at the Age of 50

Hello from Victoria, James! Hello, fellow James Enthusiasts!

I subscribed to your site for the sole purpose of being able to read your personal account of being diagnosed with ADHD as an adult (with no plans to unsubscribe because FUCK YEAH). When you announced on socials that you had been diagnosed I was like, "yeah, of course you are. Welcome to the club!" I was diagnosed a couple of months before you (September '21), and recognized the signs of a fellow ADHD brain.

The details are different but the story is the same: Three university degrees. Practiced as a lawyer for 23 years (so far). Must excel at everything. Hyper-fixate on what's immediately in front of me--IF it's interesting. Go through phases of different passion projects--the gym, healthy eating, home decoration, every hobby you've ever heard of (knitting, sewing, oil pastels, watercolor and acrylic but never oil painting, journaling, model-making, costume making with foam), and buying the materials for but never actually starting more hobbies than I can list. Those materials are all staring at me from the very well organized (mostly) closet on my left.

But, cooking meals for just me or doing laundry or mowing the lawn or recording the time that I've worked... fuck that shit.

I won't clog up the comments with my personal story (because ADHD brains were built for rambling on with no end). But you're in good company. You're not broken. ADHD is very manageable. And aside from meds, I'd say the most important thing (for me, at least) is finding a community of people who also have ADHD--it helped me to understand that things I had always thought were personal failings or personality defects are symptoms of a neurological disorder. But, if I can be a (pretty successful, IMO) lawyer and you can be a published, top-selling (pretty successful, IMO) writer then ADHD isn't really that scary.

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Thank you so much for sharing your story, it resonates with me A LOT! I don't have an official diagnosis yet because here in UK takes forever if you don't go to a private Dr. In any case, I am so glad that you became aware of the issue, asked for help, got it and now by being open about it inadvertently - or maybe not ;-) You are giving us food for thought and uplifting us - my case at least. Thanks again!

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Holy shit James, this is me. Well except for the buff oily body and the non-MBA Masters degree, and the writing, and the actual official diagnosis. But the rest resonates like a mofo. I've just recently come back into the "take care of yourself rather than die early" camp, now I know one of the subjects to address with my doc next appointment. Thank you!

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My journey is much different from yours, but I was also diagnosed with ADHD at age 53 -- just a week ago. I did well in school, but I could probably have done better if I'd had any kind of motivation.

Unfortunately, I don't have a physician so I'm stuck without any medication.

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