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DrewK15

Early Warning Signs

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The first couple of times I visited this site I had only been using Adderall for a few weeks. Early on I was very pleased with the effects I was experiencing, but there was a small voice in the back of my head telling me "this is a bad idea". Naturally I set out to silence this voice, starting by gathering information on the internet. When I came across this website I found many stories and warnings that I didn't want to hear. I remember reading the disclaimer on the home page, and deciding that this website was not for me. Four years and a lot of pain later I know this website is and always was for me.

In my experience it was very difficult to identify my life on Adderall was falling apart until things got really bad. Only now can I think back and identify the multitude of warning signs I ignored on my path to rock bottom. I hope my contributions here can help people who are on a similar path before things get so bad. For me the earliest sign of a problem was using Adderall as a substitute for sleep. My hunch is this is common among new users who will go on to have big problems with Adderall. 

What were some of the first warning signs you ignored on your journey with Adderall? How long had you been using when you first had thoughts about quitting?

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I jumped right in knew it was probably horrible for me but was so thrilled I could work non stop didn’t care. I basically remodeled my entire house on that stuff. But recall I was so fixiated I lost friends they came over we’re supposed to go out and I was doing tile in my bathroom at like 9pm on a friday this was still in my later 20’s. Pretty soon the phone calls to hang stopped I was a full blown workaholic for about a decade. Accomplished a lot I don’t regret all of it but sure did miss a lot of life with all my projects. I’m not your typical academic scholar taking it to cram on midterms. I was using to run my hvac buisness, remodel flip homes and restore old pinball games basically I never slept just work work work. Now I’m 3 years clean I love to sleep now. I still like my job but the remodeling and game repair stuff stopped. My main hobby now is health working out and eating right maybe some would say a little obsessed but now I make time for family friends and sleep for sure. It’s been very hard but I had no choice Little doubt I’d be dead if I never stopped. I was so messed up I was planning a suicide to end the madness because never thought I could actually quit.

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As soon as I started taking it every morning I was fucked. I spent about a year just taking it for two or three days before exams but as soon as I said fuck it I’ll just take it every morning things went down hill fast. When it was the first thing on my mind as soon as I opened my eyes in the morning. Then eventually doubling and tripling my dose took it to another level of fucked. Then when I got curious of what it would be like combined with other drugs took it to another lvl of fucked. Started popping opiates with it, smoking weed every hour along with that, then added benzos like Xanax and klonopin, then added alcohol and partying, then started dropping acid and shrooms after going days without sleep or food on top of all that. Not to mention constant nicotine and caffeine and over the counter sleep aids. 

 

@Frank B

I’m trying to decide what to do with my future and have looked into hvac training and also operation technology like power plant operator stuff. Can I make a decent living working with hvac training or do I pretty much have to start my own business to make any money?

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My early warning signs started when I began using the drug not only for work but also for things like socialising, working out, even doing yoga can you believe!  I used to enjoy all of these things before I started taking pills but sadly these days I find I no longer enjoy anything unless I have amphetamines in my system. I loved how productive I became as I no longer needed sleep and managed to complete a post grad degree at the same time as working full time plus overtime. Towards the end I needed them just to function at the baseline of what a normal/average person would function at without drugs. Now without them, I am only really capable of sleeping and eating. 

To anyone who might be considering it, I certainly wouldn’t recommend. It’s just not  worth it. 

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My early warning signs are similar to you all. I started on 40mg a day and I remember I couldn’t believe how awesome this stuff was. I googled it and I never came across this site but even if I did I would have ignored the warnings. I remember thinking to myself that I only needed 4 hours of sleep and I could be even more productive. I stayed up all hours of the night building my sound studio and I didn’t hang out with any friends. Eventually I was staying up all night working on stupid projects and then going straight to work with no sleep. I got in clonazepam to help me come down so that became a daily habit as well. I smoked like a chimney and I drank ungodly amounts of red bull and not eating. These were all huge red flags but I simply didn’t notice or didn’t care because Adderall had me. 

I pissed off friends and even strangers at parties because of my arrogance and overconfidence. All I cared about was myself and my addiction. I treated my family like shit too. I do remember reading some people’s opinions online about how great Adderall was and some of them even said it was good for you! I wonder how those poor people are doing now. I firmly believe that everyone who takes Adderall goes through the same phases and they all end up in the same place, addiction. Some early users will defend this shit so hard because they are still in the honeymoon phase. You have to filter them out and listen to us veterans who took the addiction all the way to rock bottom and were able to fight our way out of it and survive through recovery. I do not trust anyone who has not gone through what I’ve been through when it comes to Adderall, not the newbies, not the media, and definitely not the doctors and psychiatrists prescribing this shit. I only trust veterans on this site. Do not ignore the warning signs, in fact if you are seeing warning signs, it may be too late. Adderall is as bad as meth, heroin, and coke. Maybe worse because it is legal!

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I couldn’t agree with you more! Especially the last bit about it being worse than heroin, coke and meth. The only difference is instead of giving $ to drug cartels we are feeding the pharmaceutical industry who are equally as corrupt IMO.

i read all the glowing reviews on WebMD and RXlist of all the users who had just staring taking it. I’d have given a glowing 10 star review also back then but not anymore knowing what I know now. 

 

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On 12/1/2018 at 0:26 AM, Socially awkward said:

My early warning signs started when I began using the drug not only for work but also for things like socialising, working out, even doing yoga can you believe!  I used to enjoy all of these things before I started taking pills but sadly these days I find I no longer enjoy anything unless I have amphetamines in my system. I loved how productive I became as I no longer needed sleep and managed to complete a post grad degree at the same time as working full time plus overtime. Towards the end I needed them just to function at the baseline of what a normal/average person would function at without drugs. Now without them, I am only really capable of sleeping and eating. 

To anyone who might be considering it, I certainly wouldn’t recommend. It’s just not  worth it. 

How long have you been off Adderall? I am over a year and still struggle finding joy in things...

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I was off for 2 months but relapsed again recently. I’m in the process of re-quitting all over again but finding I’m still needing to take it at work just to function. I find the worst part about quitting is I become so irritable and say the most awful things to people which is so different to the person I am normally. I’m hoping it won’t cost me my job but I’m realising this isn’t something I can sustain in the long run.

how long were you taking Adderall for? From what I seen on this forum, it looks like it takes 2-3yrs for most people to get back to normal again. That’s really awesome that you have already been a whole yr off the pills. I’m hoping this will be me soon. If only we’d known what we were getting ourselves into at the start. 

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Haven’t heard from ya in a while @EricP

im at 20 months off and still struggling 

 

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@Socially awkward I was on it for a couple years years ago. I quit that time slowly and now that I reflect back I can see why many aspects of my life fell apart after stopping that time. I had a lot of depression back then and never tied it to quitting. My docs just convinced me it was anxiety and depression and that I should be back on Adderall. That round things did get better with time but I eventually went back for another 1.5yrs... My earliest of warning symptoms this time that got me to stop were mainly that it just quit working for me. I was getting super tired within a couple hours of a dose, my personally was gone, angry a lot and was drinking at the end of every day to cope. Also weird physical symptoms which some have gone away and some haven’t. 

@SeanW Good to hear from you. Sorry to hear your in the same boat! However reassuring that I am not alone.. I always have been here lurking a bit but also took some breaks also from my phone in general for awhile as I was getting consumed. Have been trying to get more focused on moving forward in life and getting shit done that has been neglected for many months. I have been doing better with respect to that but honestly feel like shit most days. Each day is a different battle but I can say I am at least functional. Energy is low and cognitively  just space/forget a lot of things. Keys always misplaced or just takes me 2-3 trips to the car to actually get everything I need to leave each day. Administrative tasks are my worst enemy however hands on work I can at least get motivated to get done now. Still get odd headaches and sometimes weird numbness in my face. Doc says anxiety or the headaches can cause that. Really nothing docs can do to help this process... Eat good, avoid alcohol, workout and keep busy are my top goals however I cannot say I am great at sticking to my goals just yet. Looking forward to working on my goals more passionately and thru the next year+ to hopefully feel better! - What are your biggest struggles @ 20mo?

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@EricP I’m not sure how long it takes to feel normal again. I felt that quitting recently for the 2 months wasn’t so bad, however now having used again for this past month I am really struggling, I have only managed to not take it on my days off (only for this past week) and I am super depressed and angry. I also find it isn’t working anymore yet still feel compelled to use it for some stupid unknown reason. 

Have you thought about maybe trying antidepressants for awhile until the worst of it has passed? I went on pristiq for 4 yrs and found it actually helped with focus as well as depression maybe as it is an SNRI as opposed to an SSRI? Of course only a Dr could advise you as I am no means an expert in pharmacology, just remember it helped me a lot with being able to cope with depression and I was also able to study at the time without needing a stimulant. I was by no means an A+ student but I managed to get by and finish assignments etc. I wish I’d just tried that again instead of amphetamines, I stopped taking it yrs ago as I felt I no longer needed it. 

A lot of people seem to suggest that things get a whole lot better after the 2 yr mark and you are half way there already! I wish I could make it to 1 yr too. 

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@Socially awkward you can make to a year. You’ll be there before you know it. I know what you mean as far as taking it just for the hell of it. Even when you know it doesn’t really work we still take it. I think we do this to numb ourselves from the emotions and problems in our life. Even though it doesn’t work like it use it it still helps us forget about our problems and pain for a little bit. 

@EricP

besides the recent relapse my struggles have been confusion on what to do with my life. I’m working a dead end construction job now and I don’t know if I’m capable of finishing my degree and can’t decide what to pursue as a career. I’m almost always bored and overwhelmed at the same time. The only time I feel any relief is after a few drinks which is not very healthy or a good habit to develope. 

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On 11/30/2018 at 8:35 PM, SeanW said:

 

@Frank B

I’m trying to decide what to do with my future and have looked into hvac training and also operation technology like power plant operator stuff. Can I make a decent living working with hvac training or do I pretty much have to start my own business to make any money?

 If I worked for someone else right now I’d probably bring in about the same amount of pay but work double the hours. So you can make good money working for someone else, just more work. If I had more buisness smarts I’d probably be making a lot more but that’s just me. I’m fine where I’m at maybe once I’m totally over this post addy fog I may get more ambitious to grow but right now can’t handle that pressure and I’m paying all my bills so I’m happy. If I was to ever quit my company I’d for look into going Union they make very good money plus killer benefits with retirement packages.  The bad side is the pay sort of sucks to starts union or not but with time it gets better. Huge shortage of younger techs in this field so if you want job security would be something worth looking into. 

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@SeanW" bored and overwhelmed at the same time " I totally relate to this!! Definitely many of times I feel like I need to be doing something so I can't relax but then feel overwhelmed and don't even know where to start in anything that I actually think of to do! I think it is still good old "anxiety" of sorts...

Also relate to the drinking... I feel half way normal after a couple drinks and it's hard not to want to drink when it takes that edge off... I think alcohol not only relaxes the anxiety but also gives us a little dopamine which we all crave... I am really trying not to drink as when I do I usually drink too much. Just a social cocktail or glass of wine once in awhile is my goal. 

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Yeah man I’m finding myself living for the weekends when I can go out have some drinks and feel like a normal person. It’s the only time I’m capable of having a decent moving conversation. It seems to be how most people live. Work the week and enjoy the weekend. Im trying to cut back though because I don’t feel like I should be spending money on alcohol if I’m still living at home. Maybe when I get back on feet have my own place and a career I’ll feel better about it.

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On 11/30/2018 at 7:06 PM, DrewK15 said:

What were some of the first warning signs you ignored on your journey with Adderall? How long had you been using when you first had thoughts about quitting?

the earliest warning sign was probably convincing myself to get my own prescription. i remember the internal struggle i had, knowing FULL WELL the potential for addiction. i just figured that was my price to pay to achieve commercial success as an artist. i willingly submitted myself to addiction.

the next warning sign was when i began combining and experimenting with over-the-counter highs when i ran low on adderall. i would take OTC ephedrine, benzedrex, basically anything i could get my hands on. i very likely could have killed myself on multiple occasions doing so.

the next warning sign (and probably the worst) was realizing that i could entirely avoid the comedowns by simply binging until my body could no longer stay awake. this was when it all went very downhill, lol.

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