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ADHD Adults

Confused and frustrated

I am 46 and I have lived with add my whole life only getting mildly tested 4 yrs ago. I’ve been on adderal for the past 3 years. My life is in shambles as I am separated form my wife; almost for 4 weeks now (mostly due to add and my own fault; oh and I have no job / no income) I have 2 amazing kids whom I love dearly. I love my wife, though I cannot blame her for leaving…. I am hoping and praying she will reconcile . .
so here it is:

I need to know there is someone else out there that feels like this:
I have these moments (I’ll call it the fog) where I am so confused, so foggy (I cannot see very clearly - even bright light affects me), so mentally unclear I need to be away from everyone!. I get so frustrated, so incredibly withdrawn I want to hide away. I cannot think straight.
I have no patience for anyone. I am quick tempered. I feel frantic sometimes in my head. (even on adderall)

I got so bad for 4-6 years, I would hide in a dark room on the floor at my work for 3 - 4 20 minute stretches laying still in the dark almost in a zen like state to hopefully regain some energy, some focus, and the will to want to be around people. (this rarely worked)

When I talk with someone in this state, I usually to speak in jumbled words, making no sense. There is no way I can get my feelings of my heart, to my thoughts in my head, and say those words with any sense at all. Why I say and what I feel sometimes is totally different Oh, and I forget what I say most of the time, because I remember the feeling, not the words Then I do not believe the person whom I am talking too, and argue my feelings vs my words. loosing most of the time.
I am also incredible vague. People have to ‘figure me out’
So, then why talk? I am incredible sensitive, affected by anyones energy and feelings in the room. I fall into their emotional state then get confused while trying to balance their emotional state and my state of emotions. Thus, nothing gets said on my behalf.

Most of that dark period is better (although it happens on occassion). Even the 10-15mg of adderal (3x day) does nothing. I would try many cups of coffee for a boost. I even drank almost the same time everyday (around 5ish). I drank not to slow me down and relax; to give me an energy rush to keep going mentally and physically. I also drank out of frustration for the way I was feeling and for no one getting it. So, you can imagine how well I’ve done mixing alcohol and adderal. . .  I don’t drink very much anymore, - not a good combo

No dr seems to get this. I spend so much time educating myself on add, sometimes its overwhelming.
I am learning a lot, though practicing it, is the trick! I am looking for a new psychiatrist (he’s just writing the med slips every month - even put me on cymbalta which killed and flatlined all my emotions so I looked like a stone faced, unfeeling zombie. Another step towards divorce. (not on cymbalta anymore - went off it myself. I needed to feel again. And boy, am I. I am an emotional wreck somedays.

There are better days, don’t get me wrong; when I am productive and doing well. Mostly because I think I am hyper-focused on the task at hand. A blessing and a curse. . . I stay as positive as I can. That Helps a lot!

I exercise very hard almost daily, eat great (don’t sleep well - restless and do to my life’s challenges now)
- occasional sugar (I think I need to quite sugar), probably too much coffee  

... Ok, enough for now; I could go on and on and on . . .
does anyone ever feel this ‘mental and physical fog’?

thank you for allowing me to vent . .


I have feelings ike that some days.
When I am working, I find it hard to get up and get going.  Once at the job, I do fine.
I take dexamphetamine and that helps me to focus on work, and not go off on a tangent and begin thinking about anything else.

I think that being alone is not good for me, and may not be good for you.  For example, when I lived at university, I had friends who would wake me up for breakfast and then I was up and going.  If no-one woke me up and dragged me out, I could lie there for hours and hours just daydreaming.
Today I got out of bed about 11:30am, yesterday about 4pm.

sometimes at work, I need a 20 minute nap in the mid-afternoon.  I set an alarm.  It works well.

Posted by Bob from Cootamundra on Aug 05, 2014 at 6:43am

Hi bee1!

Your description of feeling other’s emotions reminded me of hypersensitivity (HSP). You can read about that here:

Not being able to follow conversations and get the words out correctly could be auditory processing disorder (APD). Many individuals with ADHD also have APD. While this article focuses on APD in children, it is a great overview of the condition and offers some strategies to manage:

You are definitely not alone feeling like you’re in a fog ( Many describe effective ADHD treatment through medication like “coming out of the fog” (, I encourage you to try different ADHD medications until you find one that you benefit from. Maybe ask your doctor to try the other class of stimulants (Adderall is amphetamine class, methylphenidate is the other class with meds like Ritalin and Concerta). You might do better with a long-acting formulation as well.

Keep working at it diligently until you are better able to manage your ADHD.

ADDconnect Moderator, Author & Mom to Tween Boy with ADHD and LDs

Posted by adhdmomma on Aug 05, 2014 at 2:11pm

Wow, Bee1! You’ve described the way I feel most of the time, too! I worked at a newspaper and would hide in the dark room to calm down and get centered. Or I would go out on assignment and cry in my car.

I almost never want to be around people—like you, I absorb their emotions like a sponge, and my muscles (shoulder, back) tense up and twist into knots, and I can feel the veins in my neck bulging as my heart races and it feels like there’s so much activity in my chest—like swarms of bees are inside me, buzzing and stinging.

And the FOG! That is the worst, the absolute worst feeling, like your head is packed full of cotton balls. My mind flits around to topics far out into the universe and hardly ever on the one at hand. So my hands do things I don’t know they’re doing (i.e., setting my keys, glasses or phone somewhere and not remembering where). This weekend while babysitting my nephew, I accidentally locked the safety mechanism that keeps the medicine cabinet locked inside the cupboard.

I’m 47 and was diagnosed 9 years ago ... I thought Adderall was working, but lately it seems to make things worse—worse fog, things whirling around in my head like blurred images on a carousel.

I lost my job 7 years ago and have been self-employed since then. The income is peanuts, but the thought of going to another company with levels of bureaucracy and a loud, open floor plan makes me shake in terror.

Have you tried deep breathing? Inhaling 10 seconds, holding it 10 seconds, then exhaling in 10 seconds? Sometimes that helps. I’m currently looking for a counselor because at times it feels like I’m going to implode.

So, Bee1, you are definitely not alone. I do not have the answer, other than to think of your life as a nonfiction book: it’s the story of one person’s struggles with a condition not many people understand.

Hang in there.

Posted by leelee2 on Aug 05, 2014 at 7:14pm


I have just joined this site and am trying to find help as I do believe I have ADD. I have not been officially diagnosed and have no idea where to begin, but I have to say that most of the symtoms that Confused and Frustrated posted above… I have them as well! The fog they described I have that and it sometimes lasts for weeks! I go through periods not responding to emails, checking my mail, paying bills, etc. It’s like being in a black hole.

The description of being in your office, shutting off the lights and lying on the floor, yes, I have done that as well. Sensitivity to bright lights, yes I go through that as well. Shutting yourself off from everyone and feeling like the words that come out of your mouth don’t make sense. I have experienced all of that.

Glad to hear you are taking steps to address the problem with medication, etc. Not sure what else to say other than you are not alone.

Posted by nycgal on Aug 10, 2014 at 4:10pm

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