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Chet19

Doing it for real this time

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Hey everyone—really just making this point as something for myself to look back on the next time I think about going back to taking another pill.  I think being able to hold myself accountable with something actually seen by other people (anonymous or not) is a necessary step for me to finally kick this habit.

I’ve been using for about 3-4 years now, but intermittently.  It all started back in graduate school, when I took my first dose and continued on to cram the next 10 hours for a final exam that I aced.  I felt invincible on Adderall.  Like I was the smartest person in school.  I had always been smart—I’d already graduated with honors from a top undergraduate school with a technical degree.  But this just felt different.  It felt like I was on another level.  Or that I had “unlocked” my true potential.

At first I told myself I would only use it when I was needed it in dire cram-study situations.  I didn’t have a script anyway, so the only way I could get it was through my friends.  But before I knew it, sporadic doses weren’t enough.  I felt like I could be doing so much better, and all I needed was get my own script.  So I found one of my friends and was given the name to one of “those” doctors we all know.  And I got my own script.  Again, I told myself “now I will still only use it when I need it.”  I’d take it before some classes, and not take it before others, in an effort to not become someone who needed to take it every day just to get by.  But then finals would still come around and I’d go on a 2-week study bender with my pills in my pocket.  And the worst part is my grades were fantastic, so I used that as my excuse to keep using it.

After graduate school I went on to an extremely demanding job.  Think one of Investment banking/Large law firm.  I didn’t want to keep taking Adderall.  I didn’t want to need to take something to carry me through the day.  But I was scared that I wouldn’t excel in my job.  And every time things got a little rough, all I could think was “I just need to take that pill and everything will be better.”  So I did.  And I kept doing it.  And my reviews continued to flourish as I popped pills throughout the day to hide my emotions and keep myself “engrained” in my work as I worked 70+ hours week after week.

Now, I’ve been in my job about 2 years, and have taken between 20mg-30mg every day during that span (with the exception of most weekends).  I say “most” weekends because sometimes I will need to work 20-30 days straight, including weekends, and each one of those days will “require” me to take my “medicine.”  But when I’m not taking it on those weekends I give myself a break, I feel terrible.  Debilitated.  Like I’m just waiting to take my next pill.  My crux is always on my wind.  When I need to jump on a flight, I get worried about whether or not I have brought enough Adderall with me just in case something for work comes up.  When I need to do anything that requires mental capacity when I’m not on Adderall, it’s torture or plain futile.  I just can’t do it any more—every day I think “how am I going to let something control me like this for the rest of my life.”  I was an intelligent kid before Adderall.  I had feelings.  I had emotions.  I didn’t need to take a pill to get through each and every day.

Today is day 12 without Adderall.  Luckily my job has been quite quiet lately, so I have been able to struggle through it without any repercussions.  I am starting to feel again, and I love it.  But I also have no concentration and can only imagine what it’d be like if I had to pull another one of my 15-hour mentally demanding days.  And that scares me.

I’d love to hear a “feel good” story of someone who has been through a similar situation as me and gotten through it.  But again, like I said earlier, the main reason for this post is so that I have something to look back at the next time I feel like there’s no way to get something done without taking a pill and remind myself why I need to be done for good.

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I can relate. I was really intelligent prior to adderall with an iq of 140. So much so I was extremely lazy because I could things in a tenth of the time it usually would take.  Well I discovered adderall and found out what I could do if I actually worked daily. The difference here is I ended up exploring and abusing MANY other drugs to the point I lost my mind. You seem to be in a relatively really good position compared to mine when I decided to quit. Your dose is significantly lower than a lot of people who abuse it. Also the fact you’re already feeling better after a few days says you could definitely make a good recovery. It took me six months off to feel any kind of improvement. I’m 19 months off and still struggling with the consequences of my actions. I’m aware and separate from my symptoms but that doesn’t make them go away only allows me to understand and function despite. You don’t want to continue to use because things can and will get worse. I’m sure you can do enough to keep your job. You might get questioned or demoted but in a few months I’m sure you’ll be doing significantly better and be back to a normal level of production. I know this isn’t really a feel good story. Just a forewarning. There are plenty of feel good recovery stories on here if you look. 

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hi Chet19,

i dont particularly have a feel good story either, but i just wanted to remind you that you graduated with honors from undergrad without Adderall. that was all you! sure, it may not have been demanding in the same way a job can be (because as a student you're only responsible to yourself), but it surely required a strong work ethic.

you may not have been taking more than your prescribed dose, but consistently taking it for 2 years is no joke. it will take some time for your brain chemistry to balance itself out, but it sounds like your capable enough to weather the storm and keep your job.

if you find yourself struggling at work, something to consider: if you've been a superstar for the last 2 years, then you likely have a good enough relationship with your supervisor to have an conversation with him/her. it doesn't need to be a completely honest one if you're not comfortable with that, but maybe a heads up that you're going through some stuff and if it seems that you're not performing at full capacity, that's why.

good luck and stay close to these forums! (:

 

 

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I think you are amazing for keeping your dose this low for all this time. I definitely 2nd the opinion of the others and say quit while you are ahead as things definitely get worse. It only took me a short while to realise this as I became stupid with my doses very early on. The general consensus from reading all the stories on this forum is that this benefit won’t last as you build a tolerance and the drug eventually becomes ineffective. 

I know Adderall has helped you to excel with your job as it did mine but there comes a time where it will no longer work and you either increase the dose or you just stop it all together. From the sounds of it you have already made the right decision! You sound  super intelligent like you don’t need it anyway! You are inspiring me to stop using my pills at work as I keep using work as an excuse! 

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