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Rev&Rush

Do the absolute minimum (or lower if you have to) and go home (Impossible for a teacher?)

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As I look out on the edge of the beginning (my quit day) that advice above scares me.

I'm a teacher, and the bare minimum is not possible. Going home is not possible. The beginning of my day is 7am and the end of my day is 5 or 6pm most days. That's just "at work time" although nowadays I no longer bring work home, cause I don't do it. I'm too busy trying to muscle down a few beers so I can relax after popping pills all day.

I guess what I'm saying is, how do you avoid doing tasks that are normally asked of you cause you were the efficient one, you were the one who could solve a problem, you were the creative thinker, without sounding like a total dick?

I mean, I know that my health is important, and I have to take care of all my contractual duties, and the children show up everyday, so I can't avoid them, but how do I avoid all the other people... without announcing that I'm quitting Adderall?

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does your husband know your predicament?

I mean, it's the type of thing that you have to bite the bullet and jump into. Its going to suck somewhat. Depending on how much you're biting off all at once (how many pills are you going to stop at once), it may suck more or less a lot. It does feel good to live without the meds. We have all been there. Now we're all at various stages of here, on the other side. We waded thru the turbulent waters of hell and while the current and undertow tried to pull us back, we kept struggling on, all the while carrying loads on our back that were our jobs, spouses, kids, day to day life stuff and crap... and it wasn't easy.

But we all decided that IT HAD TO START SOMETIME, and we could keep putting it off, and keep putting it off, because there never really is a convenient time, but carpe diem and fuck all that and let's do this shit cuz I don't know about you, but when I get the urge to do something like quit a drug, I better jump on that cuz that feeling may not be as strong later on.

So I feel for you and your predicament. You're sort of on every day at school, it's not like you can chill the fuck out in your cubical or at home while your body and mind and soul and spirit heal. Maybe waiting until summer break would be best? I don't know. Do you want to put this off? You're standing at the edge of a better life, do you want to stay the side of abusing yourself with known poisons or do you want to look forward to the day when you can look back and shake your head with a sort of disgust with the way you lived for so long, unnecessarily, but unknowingly, and in fact urged at doctors orders to do so. It won't be easy, no matter when you decide to quit it won't be easy. If your husband is on board and knows what's up that will help a lot.... what do you think?

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Being a teacher is a job that definitely requires you to be "on" more than a lot of other jobs. I'm not a teacher but was in a similar situation at work, being the one that would always say yes to new projects and solving problems. Here are a few lessons I've learned (a month into quitting).

When your emotions level off, it gets easier to speak truthfully and acknowledge your limitations. You can say, "Honestly, I don't think I have the capacity to take on this extra project right now." If you're always the one taking on extra stuff, hopefully they will cut you some slack.

You will also feel less guilt and anxiety about saying no. My anxiety was through the ROOF on adderall. Anytime an extra task was added to my plate, I'd feel the pain of intense anxiety in my chest knowing how much I'd already committed to but hear myself saying, of course I can do that. I was jealous of people who had the ability to say no. Off adderall, my emotions have leveled off and I find myself able to reasonably assess my workload and turn down projects without feeling guilty about it.

The worst part only lasts a week. You'll feel completely helpless for a week, but after that your confidence will return and you will be able to start taking on a little more.

You can do it.

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I hate the idea of looking back on anything in my life with disgust (except for a few X's) but again, that's part of my owning up to what I've done for so long. That part actually kills me, and I know I have to face this, cause I've been running away from it for so long.

My husband is totally on board. He's been through this with me a few years ago when it was an antidepressant. I feel bad for him since I actually annoyed myself talking about when and how and why I was getting off that crap. But we laugh about it now. I was very methodical about that one (probably with help from Adderall) and managed not to replace it with anything else. Hopefully this will go in the same direction.

It's my work people. I can hide for only so long. I'm just going to have to be super stealth (ie. come in different doors, do not announce my presence everywhere I go, do not respond to emails, play stupid, a lot...)

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Some coping tips that are working for my process of quitting while still teaching-- for whatever it's worth. I teach college so it's a little different, but I've also taught the little ones and I think many aspects of it are similar.

-Being there for the students is your main priority. The administrative deliverables are important too, but the students are your #1 priority so focus on them.

-Putting my newly re-emergent increasingly social energies into developing my rapport with them and connecting to them. Since coming off of adderall can be pretty lonely, but there also tends to be an increased interest in social life, I enjoy putting some of my social energy into interacting with the students.

-Teaching, I am finding, is also GREAT for distracting me from the post-adderall blues or any kind of depression because you have to be ON and OUT of your own head!

-When I really don't feel like grading, I look over my roster with their photos and think about how adorable they are and how important education is in helping them grow up into smart, awesome adults.

-I think of my teaching approach right now as "improv theater." I write out a basic lesson plan/flow, then I go in there and improvise and try to have fun with them. Just go on stage and see what emerges. That way also, you can be more responsive to the students, their needs and questions, and less strictly focused on delivering an overly packed, tweaked out lecture.

-When I'm feeling somewhat unprepared, I have them do group work, or presentations, or videos, or whatever doesn't require me to do much.

-EDIT: Also, to get that fun, energetic, on-stage teaching energy flowing, I get ready for every teaching day by blasting loud, positive music and dancing. It beats stimulants any day. That's just one way of summoning your natural teaching energy...remember, it IS a form of acting, but if you fake the positive/fun energy and just keep smiling, you'll start to actually feel it..

Also: If you do decide to quit now, do you have any sick time? It IS flu season.... so maybe take your first week off from work, then you'll feel at least a little better when you go back.

I hope this helps! Good luck!!

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Any job is going to suck when you initally quit adderall. I had a lot of downtime at work after I quit and it was just as bad as being too busy, because I had too much time to think depressive thoughts and not as much work to distract me. Time goes incredibly slow when you're not busy at work. I bet the stimulation of student interaction will cause less discomfort than sitting in a cubicle, watching the clock.

Many of us have quit while working full time jobs, and we didn't get fired. You just have to not care about your performance for a while. Definitely take some time off, especially if you've never quit before and aren't familiar with the withdrawal. In the long run, your teaching will be better when you're not tweaked out. Short term, it will take a hit. It's doable though.

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I think one of the differentiating factors for you is that you can't hide. Your change in behavior is going to be (and has been) evident to your students and colleagues, and that adds extra pressure perhaps that others may not feel or understand. But there is someone who should understand and absolutely know about it and that is your employer, the school. Not sure whether you go to the principle or who else, but this is probably not the first time they have had to deal with a staff member with health challenges. Life throws shit at people. Employees have the right to manage life and work. I'd recommend going to the school board or whomever manages your employment contract with a statement that you are experiencing some health challenges (you don't need to expound) and that you need to undergo a period whereby your performance expectations are lowered. Whether that ,exams the teaching assistants take on more or what I'm not sure, but you are demonstrating personal leadership and professional maturity by being factual and practical. This is not chronic, you don't have cancer, you may not need to go off campus, but the fact is you have job responsibilities that will be met through this period and there are things outside your job's normal scope that just might need to wait.

You are responsible for your health, and your career. You are the CEO of you, so take control and fix the problem!

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I don't know about that MFA. I don't agree. That could have detrimental results and I'm not sure that it would help.

If its as vague as "personal health issues" they can assume whatever they like, and decide that it's in the kids' best interest to have a new teacher. Why does the rest of the staff need to know? Do they? Something about telling them doesn't sit right in this case.

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I don't know about that MFA. I don't agree. That could have detrimental results and I'm not sure that it would help.

If its as vague as "personal health issues" they can assume whatever they like, and decide that it's in the kids' best interest to have a new teacher. Why does the rest of the staff need to know? Do they? Something about telling them doesn't sit right in this case.

I guess it's been probably too long since I was a teacher (yes, I was one all those millions of years ago) and I don't know enough about the context of academia any more. I think about it like a business professional, and the importance of managing your own professional risk. Would seem to me that the way around managing any perceived downward trend in performance would be to address it up front, as no manager likes surprises... at least that was my line of thinking....

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Thank you all for the responses and advice.

Cat and MFA: I think you both gave me some things to use. Going right to my principal is NOT an option. I'm in a very gossipy building, and I know word would get around. I did think about that though, and I can be vague. I work in a building where there is always someone pregnant so it's totally realistic for me to say, this is not good for me right now or I'm really trying to work on my family or something of that nature when asked to do all the little extras. It'll stop people from guilting me into doing something and I also just want less to be expected of me right now. I know that sounds so bad, but I can't live like this. I just want to teach, not do all the other stuff. I'll have to be vague and back away from some things. I don't mean to let people down, but I'd just want to do the job I was hired for. And I don't want to jack myself up on garbage to do it.

I especially like this Cat: "Honestly, I don't think I have the capacity to take on this extra project right now." Niiiiice!

Spring break is a week and a half away, except we call it mud week. That is hopefully where I will bear the brunt of this "detox." I'm getting my head around riding the couch that week, but I also want to get a head start on it in case it takes longer. I'm doing as much research as possible, trying not to take too much before and working out which day to begin. I'm thinking day one may be this Thursday or Friday. That gives me the weekend, one week at work and a week after for the worst. I'm also looking for the right supplements, movies, comfort foods, blankets and pillows for mud week.

While other people are packing for their beach vacations I'll be packing for a week long couch ride.

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Oh, and hello to everyone too. I'm was very happy to get home today and read what people have written. It's helping in more ways than you know.

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I like your approach -- strategic ambiguity is a very powerful tool... have you ever noticed the most enigmatic and admired people are great at saying JUST enough to shut people up, but not so much that they seem apologetic? Lawyers are brilliant at this, by the way. I should know, I married one :rolleyes:

Mud week = chocolate mud cake week?

BTW I admire your profession. Teaching is the most exhausting job I've ever done. I taught for 3 years, and within those 3 years I ruined my eyesight from staying up late grading papers every night, had no end of back problems from being on my feet all day, and gained 15lbs because I had no time to eat or cook or workout. Teachers are WAAAY underpaid.

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As I look out on the edge of the beginning (my quit day) that advice above scares me.

I'm a teacher, and the bare minimum is not possible. Going home is not possible. The beginning of my day is 7am and the end of my day is 5 or 6pm most days. That's just "at work time" although nowadays I no longer bring work home, cause I don't do it. I'm too busy trying to muscle down a few beers so I can relax after popping pills all day.

I guess what I'm saying is, how do you avoid doing tasks that are normally asked of you cause you were the efficient one, you were the one who could solve a problem, you were the creative thinker, without sounding like a total dick?

I mean, I know that my health is important, and I have to take care of all my contractual duties, and the children show up everyday, so I can't avoid them, but how do I avoid all the other people... without announcing that I'm quitting Adderall?

Hm. Well i don't know if it's just me, but the "Do the bare minimum" thing isn't necessary in my humble opinion.

It may vary from person to person. But since quitting adderall, i find doing the bare minimum does not work for me.

I also have a job where i have to preform quickly, efficiently, be creative, take orders. I can't do the bare minimum or i would probably be fired. Also, at school i can't zone out during some classes, i am on my feet, working with my hands, for hours at a time. But, i found that i can go the same pace i was going when i took adderall, if not faster. I mean, it IS very possible to keep up with your career and successfully quit the adderall.

Some people may need to just take a break from life for a couple of weeks to recoup. But just know that you CAN keep up your job without the pills.

You could do it on the adderall, right? So why can't you off of it. You are still the same person. You have the same set of skills and knowledge of your profession. All the adderall did was put your head into super focus mode. All you have to do is apply/motivate yourself. The rest will come naturally.

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yeah I think the initial quitting phase is the hardest, and you can liken that to having the flu or a cold or something where you are physically drained... but then, lo and behold, you get well and start to feel better again... so it's really only a couple of weeks at most of debilitating ouch I want to be at home, and then it's literally all rainbows and unicorns and smiley happy people throwing cash at you (not coins, just paper) from then on... I remember having this immense wave of feeling good energy that came over me pretty soon after quitting as I looked forward to my new and improved adderall free life... so I think the spring break could just about cover the rough part, and then from there is all just peaches and cream....

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I LOVE all of these suggestions and supportive comments.

I've quit and gone through PAWS a number of times. I always "fake" some symptoms- like flu symptoms. i don't feel like I'm faking sickness because I do feel sick. And adderall does debilitate your immune system. I actually was really sick a little while ago. I had the flu, a stomach virus, pressure headaches, and strep throat. I was pretty bedridden for over a week, and sick for almost 3 weeks. I'm still not back to 100%. Being sick sucks and it definitely reminds me of PAWS.

You work really hard, you deserve some time off.

It sounds like you have been strong, worked harder than necessary, and taken on extra tasks for a long time. Adderall makes it easy for me to do that too. But now it's your turn to get colleges and friends to take on some extra tasks for you. Someone told me once: "Vulnerability can be your greatest strength." This really helped me realize how hard it was for me to ask others to help me even though I offered my help to others more often than not. I'm sure your co-workers, family, friends, and students appreciate how much you've always done for them. it is more than ok to ask others to help, or delegate tasks. I don't know what grade you teach, but maybe it's possible for students to grade their own, or their peers' assignments during class. Maybe you could assign projects or presentations so that the students could take some of the teaching material and class time off your hands. I remember having teachers who did this, and it was always really fun and educational.

Good Luck! and Happy Mud Week!!!!

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Rev&rush...there are three adderall addiction terms u will get to know really well on this site in no time...PAWS...psychosis and dopamine.

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I got psychosis & dopamine. PAWS is foreign to me. Is it an acronym for something? P_______ adderall withdrawal symptoms? Maybe don't know what the p is.

Please GIMME THE ANSWER! Now I need to know. Pencil? Pre? Oh, god I hope it's not pre... Planned? Pretty? Pensive? Pickle? Pentathlon? Oh I hope it's not that one.. Parents? Push? Oh A can be anphedimine, too.

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Personal Adderall Withdrawl Stash

Lol...Flush your PAWS!

Stash ...and ' cut off your doc ' are other quitting adderall terms..

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