Depression, anxiety disorder or add?

About 6 months ago, me and my husband were about to divorce. Then he quit smoking, and I found out about add in adults and immediately thought he could have it. I showed him internet stuff about add, and he was amazed to see that such a condition exists and that it looked so much like he had it.  He started to see a behavior therapist and I abandoned the idea of divorcing him, since he was doing so much effort to change. The therapist didn´t care about whether he had add or not at first, saying that it wasn´t important, and that he should focus on changing his behaviors no matter what was causing them. Finally, after 5 months of therapy, she decided that he might have add and it would be a good idea to try the medicines. She told him to see a psychiatrist. He has seen two of them. Both did, in less than a few minutes, discard the possibility of him having add, on the basis of his master and PhD degrees and a 10 year marriage. According to them someone with add couldn´t possibly achieve any of these things. They haven´t even asked about what kind of relationship we had, or how he managed to do a master and a PhD. We know how much he has struggled in his studies (I saved him lots of times..), how much longer than normal he has taken to finish his PhD (6 years and a half!), and how bad is our relationship (Actually I don´t know if my husband knows that). The therapy has helped a lot, but not enough, we were really looking for a chance to try the medicines. The doctors have been pedant, rude, not interested in listening, and very very quick to reach their conclusions. And, by the way, they had different conclusions. One of them suggested he has a "mild depression" . The other one has no doubt that he suffers from anxiety disorder, that the behavior therapy is taking too long and should be finished by now, and he should start a psychodrama group therapy (and hasn´t even explained what the hell it is!), and told him not to seek a diagnosis, but to work on the practical problems. How stupid... you just need a few minutes in the internet to know that they´re wrong, the way you treat a person depends on what is causing the symptoms, does it not? It is unbelievable! I still think he has add, because he has ALL the symptoms of it, and this actually makes me feel better about him, to think that he has a neurological problem that explain his behavior (which otherwise means no love, sellfishness, and total lack o care and respect) is a good thing. And best of all, to know it can be treated brings a lot of hope. How could a doctor say it is not important to have a diagnosis? These stubborn doctors won´t even prescribe the medicines to see if they work. Am I wrong? Should he accept the doctors point of view? Is anxiety disorder similar to add? Can a "mild depression" cause the same symptoms as add?

RE: Depression, anxiety disorder or add?

I am so glad I read your question, it nearly did not catch my attention. What you describe in many ways parallels my own. I have ADD and am a high achiever educationally (although it was an incredible struggle). Yes I have held down jobs too but often come very close to blowing them. Do NOT listen to the psychatriests you saw. Try until you find someone who is more of an expert and understands your situation. Only my third Psyc agreed I had ADD & Depression. Most of the doctors I saw would not do much to help because of my high achivements. I had to prescribe medication for my self much to the consternation of my family and my doctors. Having got a lot better after being on these medictions, they now all agree I did the right thing.

Eventually I stumbled on to a Psych who was more of an expert in these matters. He has prescribed a mood stabliser which helps me enough to reduce most of my other medications and agreed I had ADD.

So keep persisting and help yourself as much as you can.  Self presciprtion is very dangerous and NOT recommended, I was just lucky not to have serious health problems. I had a lot of knowledge of medical chemistry, was desperate and felt had nothing more to loose. But here are some "dieatry" suggestions that should help. Vitamin B6 (very important for producing Brain chemicals), B3 (reduces demand for Serotonin), L-Tryptophan or 5-HTP (helps produce serotonin), L-tyrosine (helps produces dopamine, and more). SAM-e (mediates a lot of brain chemical interactions). Take these in gradual and moderate amounts. Please do not take excessive quantities as that can damge your health too.

A good set of vitamins, the amino acids I suggested, Broccali, varied fruits & vegetables & lots of excercise will help the body & the brain get the nutirents it needs. Excercise improves the mood greatly. Finally see a good hypnotist. They can help reach your sub-conscious mind and charge it to heal itself. It was him who put me in touch with the friendly Psych!

Wish you much luck. Let me know how you get on!

Accomplishment and ADD

There are a whole lot of people with ADD who have accomplished GREAT things.  My husband is one of them.  He started MIT at age 16, and had finished with both an undergraduate degree AND a masters in nuclear engineering by age 19.  Yes, you read that correctly!  Many very smart, very successful people have ADD - James Carville, David Neeleman, Ned Hallowell, John Ratey are four names that come immediately to my mind.  Any doctor who tells you that your husband doesn't have ADD because he's actually done something with his life is NOT the kind of doctor you want to be seeing!  (Remember this - 50% of all doctors graduated in the bottom of their class....okay, sorry it was a bad joke, but REALLY!  The thought that someone can't do anything with his life because of ADD is IGNORANT!!!)

So, find a doctor who actually KNOWS what ADD is about.  Or, if you have the ability to do this and are reasonably nearby, consider a road trip to New York or Boston to get Dr. Hallowell's team to do a full evaluation.  A full evaluation will tell you about ADD...and anything else that might be going on.  Your husband may or may not have ADD - but the telltale signs have nothing to do with his PhD.  To get some ideas about how to find a doc in your area, go to and look under referrals.

Good luck to you.

Something Wonderful About People with ADD

I am on here for the first time after hearing a commercial by Howie Mandel and being directed to this site through his. I am in agreement with you fully about the exceptional abilities of people with ADD. My son Nathan was diagnosed as a child in the fourth grade who was made to take medication or not go to public school. After just one year of trying things this way my son said: "Mom I don't want to take this drug anymore, it makes me feel funny and I just want to be who I really am." My only option at the time was to bring him home and teach him myself. To this day it was the best decision I ever made for us both. He not only taught me a lot about what it means to have something to work on overcoming and making better choices as a result of some bad behavioral choices that got him sent to the principals office many times, but we grew closer through the experience. As a result of working with my child and myself I found he had a bigger heart and a wonderful love for life that others didn't see when confronted with the behavior first. As he progressed through his teen years there were challenges, but many were helped by a family friend getting him involved in a sport. It turned out to be boxing and as a Mom I can tell you it was not easy watching him getting punched in the face as he was in the ring. However, he became the Washington State Sub Novice Champion Boxer two years in a row. How's that for a kid who couldn't focus? I actually came on this site seeking answers to questions I have about myself and possible ADD tendencies I've joked about over the years. I'm here for answers for myself, but hopefully some of the things that worked to help my son can help others. I am going to spend some time and do some more research and then write about some the the things that we found successful as a Mother and son who learned on our own. Nathan has become a wonderful adult who has mostly outgrown many of his ADD behaviors. As I look over my life I think in retrospect that my behaviors should have been different, what others call "normal". I look forward to interaction on here, finding answers and sharing information. Thanks so much for the perspective that something wonderful is there in many other people who have this disorder.

Post about high-achieving women w/ ADHD

Earlier today, someone anonymously posted a comment about high-achieving women w/ ADHD.  It led to a number of other replies.  The original commenter (I verified her IP address to confirm it came from the original author) asked for the post to be removed, indicating she had meant to post it on a site about women with ADHD, not one about marriage and ADHD.  The original and all reply posts have been "unpublished" at her request.

She apologies as follow:

Please remove my post - I had inattentively posted it incorrectly I thought I was in the "Women with ADHD forum". (it was after written after a search for anything about women and ADD took me to the site. I did not notice that I was in a marriage blog.

I thought it was a safe place to vent, and trusted that anything unfit for the blog would be caught by therapeudic moderators and deleted or redirected to the appropriate place (like the trash!).

The last thing I intended to do was to anger anyone. I never do. But I do.

I'll go back to reading Katherine Hepburn quotes...........I so relate to her experiences, and appreciate her wit.

Thanks - and go easy on us - we know not what we do