By now most of you know that my husband is reading Melissa's book and when he's done I plan to talk to him about finding a coach to help me, and possibly us as a couple. So that I can be ready for that conversation when he finishes the book, I have been trying to find resources in the area where we live and contact some potential coaches to get some information.
The first thing I have discovered is that we have VERY FEW resources where I live. I live in a capital city, not some super small town! There is not a chapter of CHADD, there is not a single support group, and I have only found ONE doctor who specializes in ADHD. And he is really a pediatric specialist, but over the years he has had so many of the parents come to him for help that he finally relented and started training himself to treat adults as well. Luckily for me, he has sort of specialized in treating women (60% of his patients are still kids). I have no idea what men with ADHD in our area are doing for treatment?! Anyway, I called his office last week and after several days of phone tag, I finally talked to his ofc assistant to get some more info. Basically it sounds like he is very capable and knowledgeable, but naturally, he always starts with a full evaluation and testing ($600). I have never been professionally evaluated, so it is probably a good idea for me anyway. HOWEVER...this strikes fear in me to my core. Because, what if he says I DON'T have ADD? From what I have read and what I have experienced, I am 99.9% sure. But what if I'm wrong?! What am I going to DO? Then what explanation will I have for my behaviors? It will just PROVE that I really AM lazy, crazy or stupid!
Also, he does not do traditional coaching like I was looking for. She said after they get any medication questions settled (if there are any problems with it), his appointments generally deal with lifestyle issues and coaching types of discussions. But she made it clear that he is not a counselor or a coach and that the sessions are not an hour long like a counselor, so you have to book and pay for back-to-back appointments if you want a longer time with him. But overall, it sounded like he knows what he is doing. And he even has ADHD himself (diagnosed 18-20 yrs ago), so he is very familiar with it and really understands how it affects relationships and the whole family. They do not even know of any coaches in my area to recommend. (Grrr!) She gave me one name of someone who was associated with their office years ago but said that most people would not go to her because coaching services are VERY expensive. But I will at least look her up, I guess.
I had also e-mailed another doctor who listed ADD/ADHD treatment on his website and that he is a certified Life Coach, but his main emphasis from his website seems to be grief/loss. He has a divinity degree and many Christian references on his website, which is attractive to me because I am a Christian and like to take spiritual matters into consideration. His e-mail reply asked me to call him, so I called him today. And somehow, this man made me feel worse about myself than I had before I talked to him OVER THE PHONE! He basically proceeded to ask me if I "am determined" to have ADHD so that I have bought into a doctor-induced diagnosis? He kept saying that he could help me get to the ROOT of my problems and that it usually involved issues from childhood and that I needed to heal from those. And that ADHD was really just a "symptom" of some other root cause problem. He went so far as to say that sometimes the way we deal with our "real" ROOT problems could result in changes in our brain chemistry...CAUSING ADHD! Finally I asked him, "Well, what if the ROOT problem is that I HAVE ADHD?!" He back-pedaled a little bit then, saying that he was not trying to say that I don't. I tried to explain to him that I had spent the past 2 yrs or so adjusting my thinking so that I am no longer attributing MORAL failures to my ADHD symptoms. He did not seem interested in treating my symptoms or in using medications at all. I realized very quickly that this therapist would NOT work for me or be able to help me, and in fact, might send me spiraling backwards. At least I was strong enough to recognize that.
But this conversation was on the heels of my talking with the other doctor's office who wants to do a full evaluation and work-up. And this had already begun to paralyze me with fear that I have been wrong all along about my diagnosis, and that maybe there is no help for me after all. And so then this crazy kook further fed into my growing doubts and fears.
This was a BAD day for me on the ADD front! If you read my other post from today (The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly), you will know that it was just a BAD DAY for me all the way around. Now it is 1:46 AM and I should go to bed! Goodnight.