Main question: has anyone had experience with you or a spouse being evaluated for ADHD while serving in the military?
Hi, I am new to the forum but both myself and my long term boyfriend (we plan on marrying but haven't yet; we live together) have read Melissa Orlov's book. Prior to finding it I suspected he had ADHD mostly by association with my own close friends who are diagnosed and with whom I've discussed life with neurodiverse brains (I'm on the autism spectrum myself). My best guess as a non-professional in this is he could possess the high functioning autism + ADHD combo that is very common among us on the spectrum (in this sense I'm the weird one without ADHD).
My boyfriend is extremely intelligent, passionate about certain hobbies, ambitious, and a complete space case. The last one has gotten worse and worse as he's begun his active duty military service post-college. He has a very stressful and demanding job as a first tour officer and he's an introvert constantly surrounded by people at work. I empathize with how exhausted he is at home but I also know this could be manageable if he could get some sort of help for the ADHD symptoms he says "explained his life" when he read Ms. Orlov's book.
My main question is concerning the fact that he's in the military. He absolutely refuses to be evaluated for a possible Dx as he says if he gets diagnosed (likely) and if anyone prescribes him a medication that is banned for his job, he's at risk to lose security clearance or even his entire career. I know this is a huge risk but at the same time his rampant symptoms make us both miserable. He can't focus on his projects or hobbies like he used to. I've done my best to make it better for him but at some point it's out of my hands.
There is hope despite this as even with the risk he plans to be evaluated after earning a big qualification which he's supposed to get in September. This has been being worked on for this entire calendar year and probably longer and involves him studying for it and putting in long hours. I'm just afraid he may decide to wait until -insert next milestone here- to be evaluated once he gets this one. Procrastination is basically his middle name, especially with stuff he doesn't want to do/makes him uncomfortable.
Any thoughts are appreciated - thanks!
Meds should not be necessary.
Submitted by smd1409 on
ADHD symptoms can be treated without meds and you should be able to refuse them if suggested because it's not life-saving. It's not something that is absolutely necessary. Just to be safe you should check with someone else about this as I do not live in the US and so the rules may be different.
ADHD usually disappears with age, it shouldn't increase with age. In all likelihood his increased symptoms is due in part to something else. People with ADHD tend to have heightened symptoms the more stressed they are. In other words if his ADHD was bearable before, your main priority should be to reduce his stress because from what I've experienced it's much more easier to deal with stress than it is ADHD (I've also had to deal with severe anxiety and depression due to stress before and did so without meds too). ADHD is with you from birth and there's no significant evidence otherwise, meaning you not only need to change a lifelong habit but you need to actively find ways to deal with biological abnormalities (i.e. deal with things that were in no reason due to you but just how your body functions). Actually getting stressed from something isn't either and so should be much easier to change.
I agree medication isn't
Submitted by rebelstarlight on
I agree medication isn't always or even mostly necessary -- my concern is more about a consultation with someone who professionally works with ADHD adults. They would know better than anyone how best to manage his stress. Also, while everyone deals with mental illness differently, I must say medical assessment and medication for my own depression/anxiety has literally been life-saving. I'd of course love to not have to take them but not all of us can do without.
I know his job is extremely stressful, but it does fall on me to relieve his stress as he can't focus much on stress relief practices thanks to the stress heightening his symptoms. As someone with only basic knowledge of the condition from books, I feel a bit overwhelmed trying to understand his brain and implement systems to alleviate issues for him all on my own. I already manage so much and work full time myself.
I know what it's like to be stretched to the limit with outside demands which is why I'm trying so hard to help him but as one individual I feel I'm not doing enough. Going to keep reading on this site to get more ideas about this as I also feel I'm not alone for sure!