justwannalive

New Dream Job...No More Adderall. Help Please

8 posts in this topic

Next week, I start my dream job at a company I've fantasized about for years. It’s the epitome of a dream come true…or at least it should be. I moved to Boston last year so that I could focus on my career in science. While my last job was a foot in the door,  this is what I’ve fantasized about since age five. Now that it’s here, I am absolutely horrified. I am so scared that I'll ruin this opportunity, while battling an existence controlled by the rollercoaster that is Adderall. 

I’m at the biggest cross roads of my entire life, and I know what I need to do. I need to STOP taking Adderall. No exceptions. No gradual weening. I can handle the physical side effects of withdrawal – have done so countless times. It’s the psychological part that has kept me hooked.

 

But this time, I’m not simply nodding along in agreement while reading others recount their story. I’m not idly fooling myself into thinking “one day” I’ll stop and everything will return to normal. I’m not in denial about my addiction, nor do I think I should even be prescribed this medication. Enough is enough. I’m almost 30 years old. I’m getting married in September. It’s been one excuse after another for the past 5 years. What happens now will define the next chapter of my life... for better or for worse.

 

Since receiving this job offer two weeks ago- I’ve relapsed into a pattern I know all too well. Eating next to nothing for days on end, staying up past 4 AM only to wake up three hours later and pop another 30 mg. I don’t fit the profile of an addict, and because of this, nobody- myself included- has perceived a problem, let alone done anything to stop it.  

I stay up all night and am praised the next day at work for “going above and beyond”’ the following morning. I’m successful, well liked, and funny. I’m engaged to the most amazing person (I’m pretty sure my own mother loves her more than me!). Yet I’d spent my entire life doubting everything, and everyone, on a daily basis. The first time I took Adderall…all of this changed. I’ve spent the past 5 years on a rollercoaster of the highest of highs and lowest of lows.

Similar to the countless stories of others, I never set out to become addicted to Adderall. The first time I took a 10 mg pill in the library, I felt just like any other college kid- invincible and happy to be studying! I never thought I’d continue taking Adderall after college, let alone obtain my own prescription. I never thought I’d take Adderall for any purpose other than to study. Fast-forward to present day- Adderall gets me through even the most basic daily routines.  

No Adderall?  Grub hub for dinner.

No Adderall? Forget about laundry.

No Adderall? I’ll be working from home today

The most alarming? I won’t even socialize with my best friends; I won’t go to happy hour on a Friday Night without that handy script in my pocket…and I’m one of the most extroverted people you’ll ever meet.

 

I have always been a very motivated individual. I love to engage in conversation, learn about psychology, hang out with friends, play sports…the list goes on. And guess what- I’m still extremely ambitious, adventurous, and social. The only difference is that I now take a pill. I take a pill to sustain the characteristics that make me, me.  And without that pill…I disappear.  

I cannot do this anymore. I am one wrong move away from ruining my seemingly perfect life. But I’m strong, and I refuse to let this drug control me for another second.

As I summarize these past 5 years, I cannot picture a life without Adderall. But for the first time…I’m ready to start painting the picture. And I’m ready to start right now.

I NEED to start this job with a clean slate, without a crippling dependency on this amphetamine.  If I don’t, the pattern continues indefinitely. I’m looking for help and turning to this forum for support. I confide in my fiancé and therapist, but need more. 

Only those who have lived this can understand the desperation to make it stop…

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I wish you the best. You understand the situation very well. What I guess I'll stress is that the person you were before, and now on adderall, will fade away. You'll come to realize how much it's changed the real you. You're right about beginning to paint the picture but know you might be starting in a very dark corner. Anyways, you seem very strong willed as most are in the field of science including myself in engineering. It's daunting to even begin to explain what my eleven months clean has been like but no worries. You'll do it. Don't lose belief in yourself. 

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5 hours ago, justwannalive said:

Next week, I start my dream job at a company I've fantasized about for years. It’s the epitome of a dream come true…or at least it should be. I moved to Boston last year so that I could focus on my career in science. While my last job was a foot in the door,  this is what I’ve fantasized about since age five. Now that it’s here, I am absolutely horrified. I am so scared that I'll ruin this opportunity, while battling an existence controlled by the rollercoaster that is Adderall. 

 

 

I’m at the biggest cross roads of my entire life, and I know what I need to do. I need to STOP taking Adderall. No exceptions. No gradual weening. I can handle the physical side effects of withdrawal – have done so countless times. It’s the psychological part that has kept me hooked.

 

 

But this time, I’m not simply nodding along in agreement while reading others recount their story. I’m not idly fooling myself into thinking “one day” I’ll stop and everything will return to normal. I’m not in denial about my addiction, nor do I think I should even be prescribed this medication. Enough is enough. I’m almost 30 years old. I’m getting married in September. It’s been one excuse after another for the past 5 years. What happens now will define the next chapter of my life... for better or for worse.

 

 

 

Since receiving this job offer two weeks ago- I’ve relapsed into a pattern I know all too well. Eating next to nothing for days on end, staying up past 4 AM only to wake up three hours later and pop another 30 mg. I don’t fit the profile of an addict, and because of this, nobody- myself included- has perceived a problem, let alone done anything to stop it.  

 

I stay up all night and am praised the next day at work for “going above and beyond”’ the following morning. I’m successful, well liked, and funny. I’m engaged to the most amazing person (I’m pretty sure my own mother loves her more than me!). Yet I’d spent my entire life doubting everything, and everyone, on a daily basis. The first time I took Adderall…all of this changed. I’ve spent the past 5 years on a rollercoaster of the highest of highs and lowest of lows.

 

Similar to the countless stories of others, I never set out to become addicted to Adderall. The first time I took a 10 mg pill in the library, I felt just like any other college kid- invincible and happy to be studying! I never thought I’d continue taking Adderall after college, let alone obtain my own prescription. I never thought I’d take Adderall for any purpose other than to study. Fast-forward to present day- Adderall gets me through even the most basic daily routines.  

 

No Adderall?  Grub hub for dinner.

 

No Adderall? Forget about laundry.

 

No Adderall? I’ll be working from home today

 

The most alarming? I won’t even socialize with my best friends; I won’t go to happy hour on a Friday Night without that handy script in my pocket…and I’m one of the most extroverted people you’ll ever meet.

 

 

 

I have always been a very motivated individual. I love to engage in conversation, learn about psychology, hang out with friends, play sports…the list goes on. And guess what- I’m still extremely ambitious, adventurous, and social. The only difference is that I now take a pill. I take a pill to sustain the characteristics that make me, me.  And without that pill…I disappear.  

 

I cannot do this anymore. I am one wrong move away from ruining my seemingly perfect life. But I’m strong, and I refuse to let this drug control me for another second.

 

As I summarize these past 5 years, I cannot picture a life without Adderall. But for the first time…I’m ready to start painting the picture. And I’m ready to start right now.

 

I NEED to start this job with a clean slate, without a crippling dependency on this amphetamine.  If I don’t, the pattern continues indefinitely. I’m looking for help and turning to this forum for support. I confide in my fiancé and therapist, but need more. 

 

Only those who have lived this can understand the desperation to make it stop…

 

 

Just read your story after your post on my story and I think we’re in super similar positions. 

Im upper 20’s, super career motivated in a big job, and a very social personal. I also first tooo addy just to study in college and never thought I’d get a script. I even went the first 3 years without it in the real world but then slowly got sucked in to the point where I couldn’t do anything at work without it and needed it to go out on weekends. Like you I’m not as concerned about the depression/anxiety parts because the come downs are 10x worse than anything like that. I’m only really concerned about concentration and being productive at work  

I’ve been on it everyday for about a year plus and this is now my 7th day. I’d say the first 2 days at work I was pretty much debilitated to do work and had withdrawal headaches by the afrternoon. L tysrone and B12 helped a bit. Now on day 7 things are definitely going better already, but I’m still scared for my first major assignment that requires hours of concentration and work. Like you I didn’t have the luxury of do nothing time but since you’ve been on it for 5 years I’d say your first few days will likely be tough. You’ll just need to power through and I’m assuming your first few days of a new job won’t be too hard anyway. Good luck you got this. 

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9 hours ago, Cj19 said:

Just read your story after your post on my story and I think we’re in super similar positions. 

Im upper 20’s, super career motivated in a big job, and a very social personal. I also first tooo addy just to study in college and never thought I’d get a script. I even went the first 3 years without it in the real world but then slowly got sucked in to the point where I couldn’t do anything at work without it and needed it to go out on weekends. Like you I’m not as concerned about the depression/anxiety parts because the come downs are 10x worse than anything like that. I’m only really concerned about concentration and being productive at work  

I’ve been on it everyday for about a year plus and this is now my 7th day. I’d say the first 2 days at work I was pretty much debilitated to do work and had withdrawal headaches by the afrternoon. L tysrone and B12 helped a bit. Now on day 7 things are definitely going better already, but I’m still scared for my first major assignment that requires hours of concentration and work. Like you I didn’t have the luxury of do nothing time but since you’ve been on it for 5 years I’d say your first few days will likely be tough. You’ll just need to power through and I’m assuming your first few days of a new job won’t be too hard anyway. Good luck you got this. 

Thanks for the encouragement- today has been pretty rough. My rationale for going cold turkey as I'm starting a new job seems counterintuitive..and believe me, I'm terrified.  I really do believe, however, that if there's ever a time to do it....its now.  

The natural adrenaline associated with starting a new job will inevitably push me to keep busy while learning new things. Even when experiencing the lethargic withdrawal symptoms, I'll know how important it is that I prove myself to new colleagues.

Most importantly though, I must prove to myself that I can achieve success without adderall. I think the hardest part will happen once the initial excitement of the job fades...but hopefully by then, I'll have figured out some effective coping mechanisms. 

The harsh reality is simple- If I cannot pull myself together and quit adderall once and for all ...after landing a job that's everything I've wanted in my career....then we have a very serious problem. Only time will tell, but I believe in myself and will be on this forum daily for continued support over this journey. 

Anyway, congrats on a full week adderall free! Keep it up. You got this too. 

 

 

 

 

 

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17 hours ago, justwannalive said:

The harsh reality is simple- If I cannot pull myself together and quit adderall once and for all ...after landing a job that's everything I've wanted in my career....then we have a very serious problem. Only time will tell, but I believe in myself and will be on this forum daily for continued support over this journey. 

sounds like you're in the right mindset for this. there's no value in a dream job if you need to drug yourself to perform it!

17 hours ago, justwannalive said:

Even when experiencing the lethargic withdrawal symptoms, I'll know how important it is that I prove myself to new colleagues.

yes, but also be sure to take it slow and easy in the beginning- be kind to yourself. as reasonable as "proving yourself" sounds right now, there is nothing fair or reasonable about PAWS (post acute withdrawal syndrome). you may find yourself struggling to execute this "force of will" plan, so you need to prepare yourself for the scenario where you will need to do just enough to get by.
 

good luck and keep us posted on your progress! we're here to help (:

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I have not been on the site in a long time, but I came back, and reading your post reminded me of the realities of quitting adderall. Your mindset is so important to successfully quit. Remind yourself of the negatives of using adderall, consistently. When times are tough, it is really easy to slip in to romanticizing it. That is dangerous territory, and mostly lies the drug tells us. We need it to succeed, feel normal, etc. Just truly be easy on yourself. You sound like you put very high expectations on yourself to continue this version of a perfect life you have created, which is an inviting place for Adderall. Quitting adderall is one of the hardest things I have ever done. But recognizing that YOU are doing it is so empowering and shows you your own strength. You have a lot of confidence in your own abilities, a lot more than I had when quitting, so use that to your advantage. Build on what you KNOW is within yourself. Keep it up, because you can do this!

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We’re in very similar situations, and oddly enough, I’m living in Boston now and have resolved to quit this month as well.  The biggest difference is that I’m going to remain at the same company while I end my dependence on adderall.  In order to advance in my career I need to be more face-forward to work with our executives and investors, but adderall has singnificantly hindred my ability to interact naturally.  In fact it’s been bad for every social aspect of my life.  I could have said that I’m happy with my position as it is now, and carried on as I’ve been, but I would have been lying to them and more importantly myself.  Therefore I decided to give up adderall.  

I have been preparing since early February by working with my primary care doctor to slowly reduce the dosage and increase the number of days that I don’t take it at all.  I’m not sure if you had an opportunity to do the same, but you are fortunate to have some time off while going through this moment.  If you’re like me you might think this moment will last forever, but also honestly believe that this moment will seem incredibly brief, and transformative in the most positive of ways, some years from now.  I’ve already noticed that I’m smiling a lot more, have been socializing and sympathizing with my coworkers, and am even having lunch with them more often.  In the end I think this is what is the most important, will make my bonds with them grow, and even get me through this.  My journey however has only just begun.  I’ll try to keep you posted if you like.  Best of luck!!  I’m completely certain that you/I are making the right choice!

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