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Your Challenge

Dear Reader,

You are about take on one of the great challenges of your young life. It will change you forever. For a while you will have to give up many of the qualities you cherish most in yourself. It will take an excruciatingly long time, but in the end you will be no less than 100 times the person you are today.

You are going to quit Adderall.

Adderall takes all of your best productive qualities: your passion, your drive, your work-ethic, your confidence, your focus — and amplifies them tenfold. It makes you love any task in front of you. Tasks that you’d normally hate  suddenly become incredibly enjoyable and you commit yourself fully to them. And then you start to depend on it.

And that is the evil of the thing. By giving you instant motivation, passion, drive, focus and love for the task in front of you, it prevents you from developing those qualities naturally. By making you passionate about EVERYTHING it pulls you away from the process of finding the true passions of your heart and cripples your natural development as a person.

Your mind and your life have grown dependant on having this crutch as a part of your daily routine. Wake up. Pop pill. Be Superman.

Your challenge will be finding out how to wake up and be Superman without popping a pill.

Make no mistake, this process will involve nothing less than you rebuilding yourself anew from scratch. You are going to willingly sacrifice many of your best qualities to a purifying fire. You are sacrificing them to a vision of the man you know that you can be. You are sacrificing them because you know with all your heart that you have to; that this is the next step that your journey requires; this is the only way for you to achieve the true passion and genuine happiness and deep fulfillment and incredible mastery over life that you crave. The pills have allowed you to fake those things. Now you want them for real. Because you know that when they are real they are infinitely more powerful; when they are real they are invincible.

You will notice the bad changes almost immediately. You will be lazy, depressed. You will have no drive, no ambition; You will have no fire nor passion nor spine; no confidence, no courage, no discipline — none of the qualities you had so much of for so long.

Remember: the confident, brilliant, driven person you have been on Adderrall — that is who you are; not the desolate wretch you’re going to seem like (to others) over the next several months (or more). Those qualities you are going to miss so much are qualities you will have again and many times over, but you will have to work your way back to them ever so gradually.

It will take many months before you start to see some noticeable progress, because most of your progress will be internal for the first phase. You and many of the people closest to you will be frustrated with it. They will want the old you back. And you will be so tempted to give it to them, because you want it too.

But you won’t go back. Because for all the struggles and stresses that will weigh on you, you will feel the current of destiny pushing you along at all times…the current that you couldn’t feel during your time on Adderall….a force that makes you feel like every mistake you make somehow moves you ahead…a feeling of constant, unyielding forward motion underlying all your actions, for better or worse. Pay attention to this feeling; draw faith and strength from it.

Little by little you will build yourself back, stronger than ever, out of brick and mortar instead of glass. It will take a long time for you to find and rebuild your confidence and drive again. But from day 1 onward you will feel yourself drifting towards your true passions, your true abilities, and your true destiny.

Within 6 months you will have an idea of what you want to do next…an idea of where your heart wants you to go now that you can finally hear its voice clearly.

If you are dating somebody, you will have to lean on them heavily during this period. He/she will be the only thing you have going for you. Your life outside of them will be a complete mess.

Show them this page. Warn them first. Give them an idea of what they’re in for. Tell them what they can expect. Then tell them how much they mean to you. Tell them that when you come out of this, you want them by your side. Tell them that, as an act of respect for the love you share, you want to give them the greatest gift you can: you as you were meant to be. Tell them that your love for them has helped inspire you to make this change…assuming all of that is true. Short-term this may be incredibly difficult, but long-term it is the only way to be true to them.

But know that there’s a chance your relationship won’t make it through this. Your significant other may reach their limit at some point. Or in your weakness you may make some mistakes you can’t take back. If that happens do not be afraid. Remember how easy and self-indulgent and goal-focused your life was when you were single and on Adderall? Well, it’s doubly so off Adderall. You will have this fear that if your relationship ends you will be even more lost because you won’t have your pills to keep you busy. But the opposite is true. Your recovery will almost certainly require you to go it alone for a bit. It is not as bad as you think it’s going to be. In fact, it’s pretty sweet in a lot of ways.

Remember who you are going to be at the end of this battle. Never lose faith in that vision. It is true and pure and absolutely real, no matter how low you may feel on a given day.

This decision to give in to truth, this final act of courage you’ve summoned to murder your false self and take your chances with what’s underneath — this will be your glory, and will lead you back to all those dreams you’ve been mourning. Godspeed, dear reader…Godspeed.

377 Responses to “Your Challenge”

  1. Erin says:

    Thank you for such a beautiful message. You are part of a plan designed to save my life. I will cherish this article forever. I quit all of my addictions today including flushing my adderall down the toilet by the helping hand of God. A week ago I basically told a friend I’ll never stop and it was the impossible. I cried and sobbed for hours knowing full well that’s what God wanted me to do. Today I feel a miracle happened and I have been comforted with new faith, hope, and strength that he will help lead me to my destiny.

    Thank you so very much!!! Your message was loud and clear on why I was so spiritually sick. God bless you.

  2. Paul says:

    I dont know if anyone will ever see this; but I have searched the internet many times for someone like this. My name is Paul and I have been taking Adderall for about 3 years now. In all the messages I have seen from people this is the only one that truly explains how I feel on a day to day basis. I am addicted to this drug. I tell myself this everyday, but every time I quit I have that terrible feeling like I am worthless. It is embarrassing at your job or school when you go from being this “superman” to this worthless piece of human being. And like you said, about the only person you have to lean on is your significant other. I love my wife more than anything in this world, and she misses the old me almost as much as I do. Almost word for word I agree with this article and I am going to give it a real hard try. I am going to go ahead and say that I am going to do it and I will remember this article when I start to feel drained and worthless. I was never this way before adderall and I know that I can get back to the old me. Thanks again, Paul

  3. Erin says:

    Paul,

    It has been 2 weeks today since I quit adderall and became sober. I cannot believe how lucky I’ve been that it’s been so easy. The best piece of advice I can lend is to pray to God to help you quit and remove your desire. I have not been religious whatsoever and even considered myself partial atheist for some time over the course of the past 15 years. It started when a good friend of mine called to tell me she’d been sober a year.I’ve always been honest with her and told her everything. She told me about her addiction to all sorts of drugs and then later pills. I told her there was no way in hell I was quitting adderall now or maybe ever. We hung up and I cried out of control b/c I knew I was so addicted and hated myself for it. From the moment we hung up, God started sending me signs and contacting me to stop. I immediately got hammered that night, high, and took more adderall. I then proceeded to fight God crying and sobbing for 3-4 hours telling him I couldn’t quit and it was impossible.

    From that point I had already been drunk and high for about a week (during my off time from work) and continued for another 4 days. I knew I couldn’t quit adderall cold turkey or I’d be asleep at work so I had to keep taking it (overdosing) until I got off work. During that time I bought a book called, “Divine promises” and read it everyday every chance I could. Although I felt like a crazy bipolar schizophrenic emotional roller coaster, I was calm enough to get the message and not completely fall apart. God showed me signs non-stop during this time which made me feel calm enough to believe there was hope.

    I thought my life would fall apart after I quit, but it has been nothing like that thus far. The day I got sober, I threw away 2 packs of cigarettes, beer, and about 30 20 mg pills of adderall. I cried and sobbed like a baby until everything was gone. Somehow, God told me to play music while I got rid of all my stuff. He led me to play one song which was Bridge over troubled water by Simon and Garfunkel. As soon as I was done throwing everything away, the song went into the third verse and it was the only thing that held me together:

    Sail on silvergirl,
    Sail on by.
    Your time has come to shine.
    All your dreams are on their way.
    See how they shine.
    If you need a friend
    Im sailing right behind.
    Like a bridge over troubled water
    I will ease your mind.
    Like a bridge over troubled water
    I will ease your mind.

    At that point I was balling uncontrollably and I felt as if God were standing there singing and holding me. I can’t describe the wave of relief that washed over me and I started feeling wonderful. I immediately felt God telling me to get outside asap and go for a bike ride so I went out and bought a bike rack and found my i-pod. My bike ride was amazing. God was trying to show me how blessed I’d be without drugs and alcohol and that the life I thought I could never leave was a complete deception. My addictions had taken over my life. I was miserable, unhappy, and had no identity. I was like that song, “Gypsy” by Fleetwood Mac.

    I absolutely love everything about me without adderall. I’m discovering that I’m actually a 1,000 times better off with my ADD without it. I used to try and tackle 50 things at once and although I could get everything done, my head was always spinning out of control. I was stressed out beyond imaginable, never slept, was physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually at my worst. I did not care about anything besides getting high next and my “task list”.
    At work, I’m actually noticing I am performing better without adderall. I feel like adderall did show me how to achieve things, so I take the little good I learned, but can manage to stay relaxed and calm while i get things done. I take notes every phone call and do things one step at a time instead of 50 things at once.

    Please, even if you don’t believe in God, just pray anyway that he will reveal himself to you and guide you along your journey. I never thought I’d be happy sober, but I am truly grateful and I praise God everyday for this miracle. He saved my life and I want to spend every single second I can in thought and prayer with him. The healing power and comfort he has brought into my life is unmeasurable and by far exceeds anything else I’ve ever experienced. I find myself yearning to be close to him and teach me how to live my life.

    I will pray for you and may God bless you the way he has me. May you find everything you need in life to be exactly who God intended you to be.

    As our dear friend who wrote this blog signed off..Godspeed, dear reader….Godspeed.

    Erin

  4. Scott says:

    The message i read today is what i’ve been searching for, the way you describe adderall is so very accurate. You explain all the hardships in my life and it’s because i abuse adderall. i’ve tried to stop multiple times and i always seem to get another perscription at the end of the month. After reading this message i believe i can stop adderall for good, thanks so much for taking the time to post my addiction and how i can fix it. you truley saved a life.

    Scott

  5. Lydia says:

    Thank-you Erin, Paul, Scott & the author of this site!

    I am eight days sober from adderall, wondering how long it will take. 2 decades of life with either anti-depressants or stimulants messing with my neurotransmitters…wasn’t diagnosed until I was pushing thirty, somehow muddling through until postnatal depression.

    One year I tried to quit, I was total mush. But though I was learning about nutrition & neurotransmitters, I had not yet discovered exercise – training for 10k races, swimming every other day – sailboat racing.

    Erin, you have given me a perfect boat-name “Silvergirl.” Had it not been for having my dad’s sailboat to renovate, and fellow sailors encouraging me towards an end of october regatta, in withdrawal drepression I truly would have tied concrete blocks to my feet and jumped into the lake…

    not my lake where I am sailing but the lake of the college that tells me I am on academic suspension. One F in my initial semester of grad school – regardless that I made a 4.0 the second one, regardless that 4 out of 5 of my profs think I am an A student. I had already started my term paper for my third semester classes when I was suspended… from my initial teacher certification / masters program in Elementary education. My term paper was ironically on student motivation and their self efficacy beliefs. An F assigned but that I did not earn, as I completed the course with understanding if not mastery of the material…

    well, a year of probation… What to do but give up the adderall that made me so bitchy!! I could not study with meds wearing off late at night in the library that becomes the freshman mixer locale — after most grown-ups are home asleep. Ths F was originally posted as a D, and I believe suspension is retaliatory for the very logical bitching I did about Library Noise Level at the beginning of my re-entry to college life..

    I guess I will be a better third grade teacher when I can say that I successfully worked my way off stimulant meds.

    It’s a process, not a pill.
    The difference between Illness & Wellness is the difference between “I” & “We” so keep in touch. shalom.

  6. Van says:

    I’m sitting here at my computer blown away. I can’t believe how true and clear everyone’s messages have spoken to me. I’ve been on Adderall for about 4 years now. I’m 22 and I’m in the middle of my Senior year in college. I love God and it seems that the only thing that has gotten in the way of my relationship with him over the last 4 years is Adderall. I take it whenever I need to get anything done. Sometimes I don’t sleep for 3 days. This message is so profound I can’t even begin to explain. It seems that every time I take my last pills for the month I’m so down and depressed. I get on google and search for methods to quit Adderall. I was near giving up tonight because this web page was on the third search page. I don’t even know why I clicked it. Every post I’ve ever read about quitting adderall seems to have no depth. The replies from other people consist of other recommended drugs. No one cares. Deep down I knew there had to be people who felt similar to the way I feel because half my friends abuse the drug as well. This page is the greatest thing I’ve ever read on a computer screen. I’ve quit dozens of times but never for over two weeks. I feel so inadequate when I’m off the drug. It hurts so bad. I’ve only read it once but the author did a beautiful job of empathizing with that feeling. It’s not just the way he’s accurate about the feeling, but the mindset in order to overcome it is so influential to me. The best way I can sum it up without reading it again is that the horrible feeling is required for such a beautiful process to take place. If you can embrace that thought, you have something to hold on to when your feeling nothing but pain. Thats what I’m going to hold on to when that pain comes. I used to go straight to the pill because naturally that’s what your body wants. This message made clear the hope of what the mental and spiritual strength inside me is capable of. I used to try to beat the drug physically. I’m not going to share over and over again how hard it’s been. I just want to thank everyone who shared their thoughts and for being honest. Please be praying for me because this message represents minute one into being sober. I’ll post in a week or so with some good news. Thank you guys so much. you saved my life.

  7. Erin says:

    Lydia & Van,

    I haven’t been on this blog in awhile, but I was so excited to see there were new postings. I would love to hear more about your stories and how you are doing along your journey. I come to bring good news that I am still sober today. It’s been 39 days. I’m still not sure what my future brings and yes my “apt” (upstairs of the house which fiance claims I have full rein over) is somewhat of a disaster right now, but I can honestly say I haven’t been this happy in a long time. I feel good about myself today and I know that I am exactly where I need to be. I am back to being the fun-loving, goofy and warm person I was way before I get into all this mess. Even though I don’t have it totally figured out just yet, I wake up smiling and hug my teddy bear (yes, i am 29 years old and still sleep with my bear) because I’m happy. =)

    May God give you every strength you need to pull through this. Never lose hope and keep your faith strong.

    God bless you both!

    Erin

  8. Dave says:

    Here are a few questions I would like to hear opinions on because I think there are alot of others in this situation.

    What do you do?

    If you have a masters degree in physics (which I hate it very much, but pays extreemly well) that you were never smart enough to get in the first place if it werent for adderall?

    If you have large student loans, a large mortgage, an exotic car etc and your in debt over your eyeballs and the only way to pay for it is with your current job?

    If you loose your job and cant get another, the current job market is very competative.

    If you have a family that depends on your stability and income?

    If you wake up still drunk from the night before every day and have to go to work everday?

    If you have extreemly high blood pressure with weight spiraling out of control?

    I am very happy for all of you that were able to quit, but I find this site a little too optimistic and out of touch with the reality of some. Unfortunately for people in my situtation the best I can do for myself and family is enjoy it while I’m here and make sure they are secure by keeping a good life ensurance policy on myself. I’ve lived life without adderall before and I was always poor and living in povery. I’m not going back there, Id rather die with dignity.

    -Dave

  9. Mike says:

    Erin, Paul, Scott, Lydia, and Van: Your comments meant more to me than I can ever express in words. I am overjoyed that I am not alone and not crazy.

    Dave: New post for you on the front “Blog” page.

  10. Ilaria says:

    Thank you so much for posting this website. your comments have been so encouraging to me, i cannot express appreciation enough. i began this challenge in college, four years ago, and am now a year out of school. i would like to think i started this innocently, but i know i never should have began it. im here howerver, and this was exactly what i was looking for. thank you.
    God bless, and I will keep all of you in my prayers.

  11. Chris says:

    Hey Mike,

    Merry Christmas! And I’d have to say I didn’t think I’d be doing this on Christmas day.

    My name is Chris, and first of all, thank you for your blog, and taking the time to put it together. I read your blog at about 5 am this morning from the screen of my Palm Treo as I hunched over my couch, holding my chest, trying to take my mind off of, random lines of VB.NET code, random hook from some 70’s song that just played on the info-mercial, and the other 1,000 things flying thru my mind, I just wanted to “turn it off”. I hadn’t slept for more than 3 hours the previous three nights, my body was tired.. but just couldn’t stop my mind from running.

    Prior to all of this, earlier in the evening I had been working on my software that I had been working on for the past 4 months non-stop every day. I had released it earlier that month but pre-maturely due to my need for $.. I made a good bit of $ quickly but there were some bugs that I was aware of and had a huge update that I had been working on, that would finalize, what was really the final product.. I totally disregarded everything to get this done.. at this point not having any good rest, and still taking the adderall to keep going.. and even more so to break through the barrier of tired-ness. I knew that I had been beating up my body, but just telling myself I needed just a little more time.. but I think my body had had enough. I have had many sensations before, light-headedness..getting up to fast, feeling cold and all that.. but that was typical. I even got to the point where I typed a message on my phone in case I had to call 911 and it was too late before they made it and that they could know what happened.. I was praying and promising that I would stop… which I had before, but every time before .. I honestly knew that I couldn’t. but now it was almost like a paradign shift in my mind.. I got up right away and grabbed my bottle of pills, and my Canon Powershot (b/c I wanted to record myself so I would remember explicitly, how I felt) and I dumped the pills down the garbage disposal . And even though I was in the middle of all of this haze, throwing those pills away was so liberating, I can’t even tell you.. that was the deal-breaker between me and this evil pill . I knew that I was not going back… it was also the last of my 3 scripts which I had just filled.

    But it was actually AFTER that, that I had came to your blog. I must say that your situation was pretty spot on to mine.. with a few differences. I was very into my health, and that’s how I was known.. same regimen without fail… Weights M-W-F, then I would run 3 miles T-TH-S.. I felt and looked awesome.. I couldn’t imagine missing a day.. or eating fast food.. I had always wanted to get into film, and I had an agent at that point, traveled to some shoots, started am independent film, taking private acting lessons, writing a script for a pilot.. but I wasn’t rolling in the dough I must say, but I was the happiest I had ever been.

    Then one of my best friends who was head of Logistics for Halliburton in the rebuilding in Iraq came in and bought a couple properties from me (everyone has their my Real Estate license in Myrtle Beach, SC) so I was pumped about the commission coming soon, but he bailed out of the deal, for one reason or another, but in turn hooked me up with a near $200,000 job. Next thing I know, I was 24 with Halliburton creating online courses making a nice 6 figure income traveling the world.. then on my first R&R August 2006, came back home and had an appointment with a doctor regarding adderall, since I was technically on the clock 7 days a week, 12-hour days a day it was hard to stay awake. During that time I had also discussed plans with my Dad about business, and make the decision to return home in October 2006.. to open a RE brokerage for the housing developments coming the following Spring.. Since he had open office space his partners said I could use it for business.. so I also started, an all encompassing IT biz with a partner.. he was the hands on repair/networking/infrastructure guy and I was the Web development guy.. Soon EVERYTHING that was promised from my Dad fell through.. not due to him, but one of his partners in Logan/Atlanta, GA turned out to be a shyster. And long story short there was no developments, no brokerage and the free office space, or building was now in my business name.. so a month out from then I decided to buckle down.. and with the business, became obsessed with creating the whole turnkey marketing solution for the business.. at the same time I wasn’t paying my way with my personal $ while letting the partner use the profits for his bills… as the well ran dry and differences between my partner came to show.. I ended up dissolving myself.. and starting my own business.. and since I never really needed to go to the office before.. since it was remote work, and sub-contractors.. I made an office at home.. actually my girl at the time.. bought a desk and set it up.. then got me a yellow lab.. so I was pretty much comfortable at home working.. Then more hardships came along with my old partner, running up the corp accounts (that were in my name) I was constantly trying to make things work.. feeling guilty b/c I couldn’t give my girl the time… she soon left me a whole encounter came about from her family.. but that’s another story..

    anyhow it is 2 years and a couple months since I got on Adderall.. and at first.. yeah, it was like I had the answer.. I was Superman, then it got to the point to where I have totally neglected my health, and looking at almost every aspect of my life now is opposite of what it was when I was happy.

    I have already had panic attacks before but that was when I would go to the gym and take NO-EXPLODE after a day of Adderall.. but now it’s different.. I believe that I don’t stop now that I will not make it another year. Fortunately, even though right now, even though I feel tired and unmotivated, I am confident that my spirit will start to take form again. (I’m leaving out the experiences.. that I’ve already had with withdrawal ) and I will get my soul back.

    But I appreciate your blog… and I feel that it is important for others like me to have access from the same experiences of others….

    I have to say, for me at least, that I had no qualms throwing that last bottle of pills away. I have had enough of watching, days, weeks, months, years, go by in a blink of an eye.. isolated, trapped…

    I want to thank you man.. b/c putting yourself out there as you did has an exponential effect.. and can really help some folks.

    Thanks again and Happy Holidays to you..

  12. Mike says:

    Merry Christmas to you too, Chris. Powerful video. Keep that online so the link doesn’t die. I’ll be putting up a forum on this site sometime in the next week or so, and if you don’t mind I’d like to post that video somewhere prominent (e.g., in a “Share your story” section or something).

    Like you said, your story does feel pretty familiar to me. Although part of me wishes I would’ve thrown away my pill-popping years at a big company like Haliburton instead of a small company like the one I work for…at least then I’d have some money to show for it instead of just a bunch of programming skills that I don’t really care about (half kidding).

    I guess on the other hand though I find myself being thankful now that I never took one of those high-paying IT jobs (too stubbornly loyal to leave the small company I was at). Because I never created a life that was dependent on that kind of income…so I now that I’m back to my senses I can pursue whatever dream I want and not have to adjust financially too much.

    Anyhow, congratulations on tossing the pills. Maybe I should retitle my “Throw away your crutches. Now move.” post to “Throw your crutches down the drain and flip on the disposal.” in your honor.

    If you remember, do another video 6 months from now and post it. That will be an interesting contrast indeed.

  13. Chris says:

    I have no problem at all with you posting the video. I will also aim to post a follow up video in 6 months or so. I’m so glad that I did get rid of the pills. Its only been a few days, and I must admit I feel more “human”. I’ve been getting some great sleep – but am so very tired.. so tired. But to know that I have cut-off my relationship with the drug gives me a great feeling right now.. It’s been so long since I have lounged around and gave my mind, and body a rest. I dont want to jump into it to quickly but I look forward to running and going back to the gym in the near future. But for now, I am enjoying the rest, the freedom, hanging out with my dog 🙂 and how time is moving at a slower pace.

  14. Mike says:

    That’s awesome. Great to hear it.

    Getting back to the gym was definitely one of my favorite parts of quitting.

    I only wish I had snapped a picture of myself a year ago so I could do a before & and after comparison. My bench max has gone up almost 100 pounds since I quit Adderall. I’m almost in better shape now that I was even before the pills. And loving it.

    It’s great when you first get into the gym and realize that you can push yourself without worring about your heart exploding or feeling sick because you haven’t slept in 2 days.

    I will say though that the first “relaxing vacation” phase is great. It gives you a taste of what your life is supposed to be like…of who you really are and what makes you truly happy.

    But the hard part starts when you have to get back to work and there’s no pills to reach for.

    If I had any advice for that, I would say to draw strength from how you felt and what you discovered about yourself during your vacation phase. Remember that guy when you start wanting those pills again your first day back at work.

  15. Chris says:

    Just a quick update guys. It’s been about 1 1/2 months without adderall. And I feel great! Funny enough I have had some crunching deadlines to meet, and while looking for some information i had jotted down in one of the 18 legal pads sitting around i had filled and out rolled a half a pill… and as nice as it would of been to pop it and finish my load of work for the day.. I really didnt have to think too hard.. and that one went down the disposal also..

    but i must say yes, i was very tired for a couple weeks, but kept with it got a hold of an array of good coffee.. and actually followed the advise of someone else i cam across and started taking cayenne pepper extract and ginseng.. and i actually notice a difference.

    I bought a set of golf clubs, and man I love it.. it’s a Zen thing.. just getting back to the old me 🙂

    now I am seriously looking to fulfill my dream in moving to New Zealand.. I’m currently going thru the immigration materials.. luckily with my type of business it doesnt’ matter where I am as long as I have a computer.

    Anyhow, it is so worth it!

    If I could say anything,it would be that you just have to take care of your spiritual-well being, whatever that may be for you.

  16. Mike says:

    That’s awesome, Chris! I think that “finally fulfilling my dream of” is going to prove a supernaturally common aspect of the quitting process. That’s what it’s really about. Lucky for you it was only 1 1/2 half months. It took me 6 months to come to the point of “I’m finally fulfilling my dream of quitting the IT business and becoming a cop and a writer”.

    Great suggestions on the coffee, cayenne pepper and ginseng extract too. I have been absolutely militant about not taking any form of stimulants whatsoever since I quit, but in retrospect I think I might have been a little TOO militant. It might have made things a lot easier to step down onto coffee and ginseng.

    Have fun in New Zealand. One guy I talked to that lived there said he was 30 minutes from skiing and 30 seconds from surfing. That was one of the more awesome claims I’ve ever heard.

  17. Chris says:

    coming up on 3 months!

  18. Mike says:

    Awesome! Congratulations!

  19. Jonathan says:

    I like Chris was an Adderall addict and I was an insane workout junkie. It made me feel like I could get cut faster, without effort, and have the perfect eight pack. In fact I’m a personal trainer at 24 hour fitness and The Sporting Club in La Jolla, San Diego. I kept my addiction white collar style. When I tried quitting Adderall I took on cocaine (hey man, it has a lighter effect)….and went so far as to dissolve cocaine in a nasal decongestant bottle so I could do it in public. On the stimulants I felt like I was 18 years ago full of testosterone, dreams, and could run for 3 hours straight. I don’t really think anyone could tell. If anything I got more clients because I was more sociable. But I know the cycle. Because I’ve tried to take stimulants / lay them off because I would burn out on them. I even went so far as to buy all these 5-HTP, magnesium, and hardcore Vitamin C supplements to avoid burnout for as long as possible. I now realize I might be obsessed with a super cultured image of having 0 percent body fat. What my friends tell me is I started looking too thin…it got out of control…not to mention I was emotionally depressed. Inside, the biggest conflict was this…how can I tell people to be motivated to workout when I need amphetamines / narcotics to motivate myself? Have I lost hope in life? In the back of my mind this was coupled with paranoia that a couple of my ‘doctor’ clients knew what I was on. It is the MOST stressful thing to have to try to act normal while on Adderall. Another thing is I associated alot of positive feelings with Adderall. In my mind, I thought working out on Adderall made me feel / look like superman. Every single girl I attracted while on Adderall I associated to insane dopamine flowing through my brain and the spiritual energies of confidence while I was on Adderall. In the end…you feel really fake. I can relate to the author of this website. When I looked up Youtube – Fake It, I liked the song. Then I saw Chris’s video. In my mind quite crudely I thought “fuck yeah dude…you fucking did it.” then I grabbed my pill bottle and grinded them up too. I could have easily sold it to my friend for $5 dollars each but in my mind I thought “you need this Jonathan…” (another sign you are on adderall, when you start talking to yourself and calling yourself by your name…like We can do this Jonathan) . I have already been off them a week (been on spring break, I go to San Diego State University for my Physical Therapy degree), because I know in order to achieve the same high, I gotta be sober. I was going to take them again on Monday then I looked up “quitting Adderall on google.” Again, cycles of up and down. And during these cycles of being sober…I usually fatten up by binging on junk foods. I guess its because I accomplish my goals while on adderall (fitness) and I guess to keep being motivated in life, I hold myself by putting a little fat back on my body again. In the back of my mind I also know the binging will have no consequences because on Adderall I will easily burn 3.6k calories a day according to my heart beat monitor. It is a sickening cycle of getting fit, then getting fat just to get fit again ON ADDERALL so I feel like I’m moving in this wonderland.

    Anyways, I feel greater than ever, I have my windows rolled down when I drive, I enjoy the fresh breeze I feel on my face while blasting your Fake It song…with my surfboard in the back. I do NOTHING all day recently, I just go to the beach to sleep, or go to lie on my board out in the ocean. I’m so lazy I usually don’t paddle to catch a wave. I am so tan I am almost black. I feel like myself again. I constantly remind myself how my strict wealthy parents engrained in my mind to make tons of money, drive range rovers at 22 years old, and buy 5 million dollar mansions. Do I need to wear Paul Smith, fashion brand crap all the time? Do I need to stand with impeccable posture? Do I need to write in my red leather Franklin Covey planner that I bought while high on dopamine? SCREW IT! I am sick of taking this stimulant trying to be awesome for everyone else. Time to BE MYSELF. I didn’t even go to my psychiatrist this month for my refill…and I saw two mails from him that I DIDN’T EVEN OPEN. Bottom line is feel free and everytime I look in the mirror at myself I feel my confidence surge up.

    So now that spring break is over I go back to class, see all my ‘Abercrombie’ obsessed friends and I’m a little fatter and alot tanner. But hey thats me. Some of my friends even said I looked better than I have for a long time.

    So thanks again guys, you gave me the edge I needed because #1 chris was from a similar background it seems…..and #2 Mike’s way of describing its effects were just…so accurate….I felt bonded and supported even though I don’t even know you guys…

    Anyone reading this…I’ve tried quitting Adderall atleast 10 times. Let me tell you the depression reoccurs often. Sometimes you will be up. Sometimes youw ill be down. Sometimes you will even feel that DOPE buzz in your brain like when you got high. The bottom line is this. Life is so short and spending our whole lives on adderall is just…so not human. I don’t really know how to explain it but…its just not living life to the max….which is what I wanted when I was younger. I wanted to be the best personal trainer who trained celebrities. I knew this would bring financial independence which means freedom (so my parents tell me) and I could go climb mount everest ($100k for training) or go to italy, eat at my fav restaurant, and fly back the same day. I have become this self obsessed personal trainer who needs a pill just to wake up. Everytime you come down you have to look at the raw facts. Before I took Adderall I was driving an Audi. After I took Adderall I riding the bus. You really have to look at how much progress you RAWLY made and make the logical decision to move forward with your life.

    Bah I’m rambling, must be all the Adderall left in my system from years of use. Good luck everyone!

  20. Mike says:

    Great post, Johnathan. Thanks for sharing your story and insights. Lots of good ones. Congrats on finally sticking it out.

    Funny that you were a personal trainer…responsible for motivating people for so long…maybe you’ll be able to turn some of those motivation skills on yourself when you go through rough spots.

    You’ve also answered another question I get a lot through this site: Is it OK to exercise on Adderall? You’ve proven that it is techincally ok at least…based on the fact that you never had a heart attack even though you were exercising to your max on coke and Adderall.

    I think you’ll find that trying to work out without Adderall vs. with Adderall is analogous to the way the rest of your life feels without Adderall. Without Adderall, the weights feel twice as heavy, the run feels twice as long, and for that reason the thought of even trying can often be depressing when you start comparing.

    When you get back into the gym, you have to hear all those negative voices telling you you’ll never be the same, then swallow them, take a big breath, pick up the bar, and lift the weight anyway…do that over and over until you enjoy it again.

    Again, great story.

    If you guys don’t mind I think I’m going to go ahead and post all your stories in the forums so they’re in a central place…and so you can come back and update them.

  21. Mike says:

    UPDATE: I’ve used all of your stories to kickstart a new “Your Story” section on the forums. Each of you have your own special thread. Please update your story if/when you feel compelled!

    http://quittingadderall.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=2

    New readers: Post your story!

  22. Chris says:

    I just updated my thread on the forum. Coming up on 5 months, and it only gets better!

  23. Chris says:

    Jonathan,

    such a great story. I cant justify with words how it makes me feel to know that my experience could transcend to yours and have an affect. That alone would make quitting worth it. And I concur with you in Mike’s way of describing its effects and his accuracy. It was so spot on to how I felt.. that gave me my edge.

    I hope to hear from you on your progress. It’s definitely worth it.

  24. Mike says:

    @Chris’s new forum post

    Running 50-60k a week? That’s awesome! I’m so jealous. I’ve got IT band problems and haven’t been able to run for months.

    At least my inability to run resulted in me trying swimming…which is at least half as enjoyable as running (still not the same though).

    I missed exercise. I’m glad I have it back now.

    Also, your story and your video has reached lots of people. You’re a geek so you’ll appreciate these stats..
    *Your video post is the 3rd most popular post on this site (out of like 40)

    *The bounce rate on your post is only 25% (making it the second most sticky post on the site)

    *The average time spent reading your video post is a respectable 1min. Considering how short the words are in the post, that means most people are watching the video.

    You did a lot of good with that. And now it’s immortalized and will only help more and more people forever.

  25. Chris says:

    Hey guys, it’s June 4th and it’s been a little overs 5 months. I just wanted to stop by and say that I along with a couple others guys, that both work for themselves as either programming or as internet marketers started a site http://www.eastwestp90x.com – We did this b/c for our own reasons (mine being adderall) found ourselves slaving away at the computer with a lack of physical activity… A very sedentary lifestyle. We were sick of it. So we decided to chronicle out progress doing the now popular P90X workout regimen. We are documenting it daily thru video and holding each other accountable as well as motivating each other. This is just another addition to the progress I have been making and I actually want to credit Mike for putting the idea in my head with quittingadderall.com – b/c from my personal experience in finding this site and listening to others I realize how a blog can reach people and possibly change their lives. Thanks again!

  26. Mike says:

    Hey Chris,

    Great site! I added you to my blogroll. That should help get you some backlinks at least 😉

  27. Matt says:

    The article and comments above are scarring me…I can relate to EVERYTHING stated. I am also thankful to see the comments about putting trust in God. I am by no means a “Bible Beater”, but I do have a strong faith (at most times) in God. Been on Adderall for 7 years… currently up to 120 mgs a day(yes, abuse)…first day of completely quitting starts tomorrow(7/9/09). I’m all out, so no options or temptations to use it. Have gone 3 days before without in the past, and it was hell. I’m scared what the next 30 days holds…praying and thanking God I found this site. I know it will help.

  28. Mike says:

    Hi Matt,

    Your faith and spirituality will be a gigantic help. Not only will it help you trust that your struggle will eventually have a positive outcome, but it will help you feel like you have a companion during a time when you’d otherwise feel pretty alone.

    One of the most influential quotes I read while quitting Adderall was “Instead of striving for other people’s approval and apologizing to God, strive for God’s approval and apologize to other people.”

    That is effectively what you’ll be doing when you quit Adderall: Nobody will approve of your decision but God and maybe a few close friends.

    That quote came from the book Thriving Through Crisis, which I found coincidentally at some garage sale I decided to stop at randomly a few weeks before I decided to quit Adderall. The book looked interesting (the only interesting thing at the garage sale), so I bought it (actually the lady gave it to me). It sat in my room unread for weeks, collecting dust. Then a month or so later, I decided to quit Adderall, and in the thick of it I picked up that book and it helped me tremendously.

    And that is one of the many reasons why I can never be an atheist.

  29. Charlotte says:

    I have been taking adderall for eleven years. I was diagnosed with ADHD at nineteen although I had never had any problems in school. The abuse began in college and continued through to law school until I had a full blown panic attack (I thought I was having a heart attack at the time) and was taken to the emergency room by ambulance. The doctor thought I was a meth-head because my heart rate was through the roof and I tested positive for amphetimines. This experience scared me straight for several years but about six months ago I started abusing it again. I’m not sure how it started but I guess that doesn’t really matter. All I know is that I am high all the time and scared to try functioning without it. I am about to run out of a prescription I received about two and a half weeks ago for 90 ten milligram pills. I have finally decided to commit to ending the race with adderall. If I don’t stop now I am scared that I will eventually die from it. I found this site tonight and the stories in this blog have been my salvation. I knew I wasn’t alone but it is so amazing to read these posts and hear that the rest of you managed to make it through the withdrawal and aftermath and come out alive and stronger on the other end. Thank you SO SO much for sharing your stories. It has given me the hope that I needed to make this decision. I know that if I just picture you guys making it through I will be able to survive these first few weeks of Hell.

  30. Mike says:

    Hi Charlotte,

    Happy to be here for you. You can get through this. That fear you have will help.

    Why did you start using it again after so many years off it? It’s important to remember the pressure that led you to that decision so you can watch for it…and face it naturally this time.

    You are right that there are plenty of health risks with taking high doses of amphetamines every day. And at the doses you’re taking those health risks go way way up. This fear you have of dieing is a gift. Use it to scare yourself away from the pills that will rot your soul as badly as they rot your body.

    Trust me, Charlotte. I can tell you first-hand: There is life after Adderall. Well, let me rephrase that. Because “life” after Adderall not what most Adderall takers are concerned with: There is work after Adderall. Lots of glorious, passionate, willful, high-achieving, value-expressing, creative, brilliant work…all produced by your true self in record time without the help of that little orange (or blue) pill.

    But it takes time. I know, as you said, that you are scared to try functioning without it: That’s why for the first phase you shouldn’t try functioning without it. Just try not functioning without it. Bring back the “functioning” part little by little as you are comfortable. Wean yourself back into working. Then one day you’ll find yourself conquering the world and it will occur to you that you’re doing it all without Adderall…that you are (dare you say it) recovered. But not just recovered. Better. Than ever.

  31. Charlotte says:

    Thank you Mike. I really can’t thank you enough because this website was the only thing that truly moved me to stop taking Adderall. I have had a pretty rough three days I must say. Being hungry all the time is the least of my problems but annoying. I have felt sick and hopeless but I keep making it through these bouts and regaining control over the urge to use more Adderall.

    I wish that I could just sleep and sleep. That’s what I have been doing in my free time. The trouble is that my job doesn’t give the option of easing back into my work. I have to be in court several times per week and preparing when I am not in court. I just hope I can stay strong. I have been trying to keep as busy as possible. My boyfriend has been very supportive and understanding and says he’s ready to go through this with me so that definitely helps.

    What I hate most of all is that cloudy feeling in my head. It was there all day today at work and didn’t start to clear until late this afternoon. It’s been so long since I have been off of Adderall that I don’t know if that’s just me or if it’s the aftermath.

    I was on adderall the entire elevan years but just took it in my prescribed dosage for the past several years until recently. I wish I could pinpoint what caused the abuse to start again. I think it was a culmination of a number of things. That’s all I have been able to figure out so far. I would love to transition into a new career but the economy makes that pretty impossible right now because I have financial obligations outside of myself. I am trying to plan for the future though and I want a future without Adderall because I am sick of cheating.

  32. J says:

    Thank you for this site. I just want to tell you that I just flushed my newly renewed prescription down the toilet after abusing it for months. It finally hit me how much of my life I have wasted away by taking this stupid pill.

    My story is soon to follow…

  33. Erin says:

    Wow, here I am again on your website. It’s a year later. I am trying to quit again. Well, this time I was forced to quit. Little about me.

    Quit adderall for 3 months last September. Had personal issues. Couldn’t deal. Went back to adderall. Broke up with my fiance. Moved in with my parents. Lost my job. Moved to Houston, TX from OH in April. Landed in the hospital in June due to adderall overdose. My insurance company has banned me from it. My doctor won’t give it to me. Got concerta out of sheer desperation a month ago b/c i was stressed out beyond all get out and had to get stuff done. Insurance wouldn’t pay for it. I paid $160 out of pocket for one month of pills. Talk about addiction, right?

    So here I am again. I am happy off these pills, but keep falling back b/c I get overwhelmed and afraid of gaining a million pounds. I hope I can stay off forever.

    I’m glad your website is still here. I’m glad to see I have a lot of new reading to catch up on.

    Thank you for everything.

    Sincerely,

    Erin

  34. Mike says:

    J,

    Congratulations! Looking forward to hearing your story.

  35. Mike says:

    Erin!

    One year ago, you were my first-ever commenter. Look how much the site has grown! You should take partial responsibilty for that. Back then I think I only had two posts: “And then one day you find it” and “Your Challenge“. The site had been up for a while without any signs of life from readers. I was actually wondering whether I should take the site down (a testament to the insecurity that can hit you when you quit), and then your comment came through. Totally made my day, and renewed my faith. Spooky-good timing. I’ll always remember you for that.

    Sorry to hear you’ve been having such a rough time of it though.

    Well, the good news is that your life has already fallen back to basics, so you can’t fall much farther by quitting now.

    Most people are afraid that if they quit Adderall they’ll lose their job, their boyfriend/girlfriend, have to move back in with there parents, etc…ironic that this is exactly what happened to you when you went back on Adderall. The thing is, these fears of quitting are usually accurate. Your life will go through drastic changes when you quit (painful as it may be, drastic change is kinda the point). In your case, you’ve already gone through many of these drastic changes. Stay here for a bit in your more simple life, where you have less to lose because you’ve already lost it. Focus on staying off the pills for a while first. Then get back in the water one toe at a time.

    This is the death of your ego. It’s a painful thing. But you’ll be a better person in the end, once it rebuilds.

    Don’t let your self get overwhelmed. You have fewer obligations now. Keep it that way for a while. If you’re afraid of gaining a million pounds then start running or something….channel that fear into compulsive and obsessive exercising. It’s a healthier addiction. Picture yourself as getting fat every time you feel like skipping a run or a gym visit. Let that anxiety drive you out the door. I know this advise may sound a little twisted, but it beats sitting around popping pills that ruin your brain just to keep the weight off. There is such a thing as “good crazy”.

    Hang in there. You’ll make it through this time. Like you said: You don’t have much of a choice.

  36. Erin says:

    Mike,

    Please whatever you do…do not get rid of this site. I don’t know what my future brings, but I know that your site was the best and only thing that truly helped me get off adderall last time. I was so happy to see all the new articles and activity since I’ve been gone. People need this site, Mike. I’ve been on ADD drugs for over 5 years now. I am scared to death I’ll never be off them for good.
    They have ruined my life in a way b/c I haven’t beat them yet even though my heart prays I can do it.

    My heart goes out to anyone else trying to beat this god awful addiction. Godspeed my friends…godspeed.

    Erin

  37. Mike says:

    @Erin

    When it comes to something you are meant to do (like getting off ADD drugs and leading the true, genuine life you always knew was possible), there are two approaches: You can do it now when you have a choice, or you can keep putting it off and failing and running from it until your subconscious sabotages everything else and forces you to do it. Either way, it’s going to happen. The seed is already planted. That flower is going to grow whether you make room for it or not. It’s your call whether you clear it a path or you wait until it rips its own way through.

  38. Clint says:

    To those of you who have reclaimed your true selves and feel less fake I say I can partially identify with you.

    I am on the other side of the equation having only taken Adderall three times but also thinking/praying out loud (angrily and with bewilderment)to God how am I to get a sense of fulfillment in this life with a brain that is faultily wired. My true non-ADD self has not yielded this beautiful self-fulfilled existence that some of you are now discovering. Also, to put things into perspective I have been a believer most of my life and I came to believe in Christ not because I came from a churched family but specifically because I believe God answered a specific prayer when my Mom had a life-threatening brain aneurism when I was a teenager and survived something that kills most people.

    I would also characterize my walk not as one where I pray to God and expect Him to make me a millionaire but a realization that we live in a sinful world and the manifestations of these sins give us a less-than-perfect world that we often blame on God.

    Not pre-supposing that all of you know some of the symptoms associated with ADD/ADHD the one characteristic of people who suffer from this is that the frontal lobes in their brains are far less active than those people who do not suffer from it.

    In brains scans the frontal lobes of ADD/ADHD people show as having little activity when going through exercises that task the executive functions of the brain (organization, priortization and time management)in comparison to the non-ADD brain.

    In my ignorance I used to think prescriptions for people with ADD/ADHD were intended to sedate and/or tranquilize (such as chloropromazine sp?) not realizing that in the case of Adderall they are intended to stimulate the brain, specifically the frontal lobes so the brain can regulate itself.

    I have two children both gifted with learning disabilities, one has ADD and the other has ADHD and both my wife and I have ADD traits and/or are undiagnosed ADD/ADHD sufferers. Through our research we have come to understand that these traits are hereditary and as we have reflected on relatives who have since passed we realize they too exhibited many of the symptoms of ADD/ADHD sufferers and/or other related coginitive deficiencies.

    Having lived in family that had these problems and did not abuse and/or become addicted to Adderall (or any other amphetamines) the repercussions have been just as dire as some of those you all have described.

    Both my parents self-medicated, my Dad was a heavy drinker and my
    Mom was an alcoholic prior to her aneurism in her brain. My sister had huge mood swings and felt she would die until she moved away from a toxic home environment, was diagnosed as manic depressive and was prescribed lithium. In my case I abused neither drugs or alcohol and work our vigorously when not nursing a sore back or pulled muscles.

    What I have found depressing is that when I have had a mountain of work in front of me I have routinely procrastinated and when I do get to it I am highly inefficient (Classic ADD traits). At the end of the day when I don’t get done what I set out to do I feel terrible. I used to ask myself why are others so organized and seem to be able set/attain goals easily and I am lucky if I can do this for 2-3 hours.

    Why is it when I get assignment with a deadline 3 weeks into the future I can only do my best work 6 hours before it is due? Some of the answers lie in the body’s own chemistry. If this procrastination (and the requiste all-nighter before a deadline) sounds familiar it is because your frontal lobes aren’t functioning properly and the adrenaline that body produces when threatened (failure of not getting the assignment/proposal done) acts as stimulant on your normally dormant frontal lobes. Suddenly you can think clearly and the ideas flow from your head and you often do some of your most brillant work.

    Afterwards as you do the post-mortem on your thesis/assignment you ask yourself “why didn’t I do this 3 weeks earlier” and avoid all the stress. The answer is it took the stress to trigger the adrenaline response to stimulate the frontal lobes that allowed you to focus.

    As a middle-aged man, a believer, one who has not taken the easy way out with drugs, I am bewildered/disillusioned/incensed at the incredible human capital cost that I, my family, and others like me have had to pay because of our cool-running frontal lobes.

    It could be argued that my cool-running frontal lobes are one of the manifestations of sin in me (and I wouldn’t argue)but herein is the insidious quality of our malady. You can’t see, touch or feel ADD/ADHD. While those who have physical disabilities have their own unique and trying set of challenges the one blessing (if you can call it that) is that it is readily apparent to all concerned the handicap that they’re working under.

    In the case of ADD/ADHD you might simply be called “lazy”, “stupid” or “crazy” (see book entitled “You Mean I’m Not lazy, Stupid Or Crazy?!” ISBN 0-684-80116-7)and live with the lowered self-esteem, depression, substance-abuse and potential lawlessness that usually follows.

    At this point in time I am not prepared to demonize Adderall as I continue to look for drug-free coping mechanisms for myself and my family.

    I welcome your comments

  39. Jillian says:

    Hi Mike,

    I wish there was some way to instant message you. I have been off Adderall for over two months now completely but just started my very first quarter at UCLA and it’s been disastrous. I’m so depressed and have been feeling weak lately, telling myself that if I get certain grades after this quarter I will allow myself to return to Adderall. I’ve come far. I just can’t seem to get through life without acquiring happiness via an outside source: either my Adderall high/sedatives/some other person. But I know your site was the first real eye-opener/inspiration in getting me this far. I could use a bit of a pep talk!

  40. Mike says:

    Hi Jillian,

    1. Find your own fuel. If you are the type of person who needs external sources of happy juice (be it drugs or another person), then you have a serious problem: Dependency. This will manifest in your drug use as well as in your relationships. When you get into a relationship with a drug or a person, that other thing is literally responsible for your happiness and the thought of losing it is too painful to bear. That’s a recipe for disaster and troubled relationships.

    The thing is, you can’t really stop being dependent like that. You can’t easily be healthy and not dependent all of a sudden, but you can be dependent on something healthy. Drugs and other people are inconsistent as fuel because you cannot control them perfectly; you cannot make them output more happy juice when you need it (at least not without abusing them). But if you find a way to manufacture your own fuel — where you can constantly increase the happy juice output to higher and higher levels — it will do wonders for your ability to be independently happy.

    This fuel I speak of is something you love to do and derive a great sense of accomplishment from. Something that gets better and better and bigger and bigger the more you put effort into it.

    I don’t know any example to give you besides a personal one, so here it goes: This blog is a big source of fuel for me. Whenever I get a comment or put up a new post or redesign the theme, it’s like throwing a fresh scoop of coal into my own little steam engine; making it burn hotter and hotter. When I feel crappy, I do something to improve the site, and it perks my mood right up. No romantic break-up or drug withdrawal will ever take away the fact that I created something that helps people every day. This is in some way what I was talking about in Your Challenge when I said “little by little you will build yourself back, out of brick and mortar instead of glass”.

    Find your bricks, and start building your new house; your own little empire of accomplishments that came from the heart. And stand taller on that foundation forevermore.

    2. There is nothing wrong with telling yourself “if all else fails I’m going back on the pill”. I still tell myself that. I’ve been telling myself that for 2 years. It’s actually kind of comforting. It focuses you, because what you’re effectively saying is “when I am convinced that there is nothing else I can do to succeed and be happy on my own, then I will admit defeat and go back on the pills, knowing that I tried and there was nothing for me down that path”. The thing is, there is almost always something more you can do, and when you start considering going back on the pills, those other things come to mind all of a sudden, and you suddenly feel like there’s something you can do, and there is. You keep saying “ok just this one more thing I could try to do that might help bring my drug-free dreams to life, but if that doesn’t help I’m going back on the pill” and eventually, after enough “just one more things”, you’ve gone miles. And you’re a lot closer. And it gets a little easier. A little.

    3. I hope to God you didn’t try to take a full class load your first semester back. Take only one class if you have to. Work yourself back into it.

    P.S. I’ve also created an email account for one-on-one help. Anybody that needs some personal help can get me here: mike at quittingadderall.com

  41. Mike says:

    @Clint

    Thanks for your great comment and for sharing your story.

    As a ADD/ADHD person, you have a choice for how you want to live your life: Conform, or innovate? If you choose to conform, to pursue standard job roles for an otherwise gifted person, you may well need drugs to keep that cool-running frontal lobe stimulated. Otherwise it would be hell. This is the hell I suspect you are going through: Trying to conform with a non-conforming brain and without medication. Trying to remain stimulated in an environment that is built for people with completely different brain scans. I salute you for your noble effort, but I can see how it’s a recipe for bitterness and disillusionment.

    As you stated so well, understimulation is the problem with an ADD brain. There are two ways to get that stimulation: 1. Drugs (artificial) or 2. The right environment. I hate to use an old argument, but put an ADD kid in front of a video game and I guarantee his frontal lobe will light up as bright as any other kid’s…if not brighter. Video games are a crude example of the real notion of the right, stimulating environment for ADD people.

    Trying to put an ADD person into a quiet, big-task-oriented, code-monkey office job (or even the normal classroom environment) can be like trying to domesticate a feral cat. A feral cat is going to be miserable in some 1000 sq. ft. carpeted apartment with feeding bowls and baby talk. It’s never going to quell the urge to claw and hiss and pee all over everything. It’s a wild animal. It belongs in the wild. However, put that feral cat in an open forest where it can hunt and play and pursue it’s own goals; and it will know true happiness.

    In a household environment, next to normal domestic cats, a feral cat would be like the crazy/hyperactive/idiot child. But put a feral cat in a wild environment, and it is cunning, adventurous, and productive.

    For ADD and non-ADD people alike, it is natural to pursue things that stimulate your brain. But for an ADD person to pursue activities that stimulate “normal” people because he feels like that is what is expected…that’s not going to work. He needs a higher dose of stimulation than most jobs provide. And that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. But it does have to be a factor. You can’t do normal jobs pretending like you can be OK with normal stimulation. There are plenty of jobs that are much more stimulating. Be a cop, be a soldier, be a marketing idea-man, be a top executive or a sales manager, start your own business; hell, go work on wall street — anything that is fast-paced and constantly stimulating. Or just find something you really, really love — the love and the sense of purpose itself can stimulate you.

    But I understand that this course (searching for an atypically stimulating environment) is not for everybody. I understand that pharmecueticals are created to fill a real need; that there people out there who are the poster-children for deeply needing a drug like Adderall to help them with serious mental difficiencies. But these people are much fewer in number than those that are simply in the wrong environment and/or taking the popular way out with drugs.

    You mentioned that you continue to look for drug-free coping mechanisms. Again, I respect you greatly for your intentions. Drugging yourself can be a risky path. I and the readers of this site will be the first to tell you that there is a fine line between proper, healthy stimulation that lets you do the things you want, and over-stimulation that takes control of your desires and makes you over-commit to tasks. This site is mainly for people who have crossed that line. It does not take abusive doses to cross that line into overstimulation. I rarely took even as much as I was prescribed. And with completely imprecise dosage-to-patient allotments, it’s extremely rare that somebody is going to get a dose that truly stimulates them “just enough to be right”. Plus there’s the tolerance-building factor.

    Even in a perfect world, where everybody had to get regular brain scans on and off the drugs to make sure the drug was giving them “just enough” stimulation…I’m still not sure I would agree with manufactured stimulation in any but extreme cases. It’s like giving a girl a love potion to “fix” the problem that she doesn’t love the high school quarterback like she is supposed to (and like every other girl in the school does). Part of me thinks that’s a tragedy and a violation of the way love is supposed to be found naturally.

    ADD can be recipe for success outside of the mold. In a cool environment, having a cool frontal lobe can be a curse. In a hot environment it can be a blessing. When you accept that you have ADD and you are not going to take drugs, then you must give up all notion of conformity and become an innovator; find that non-typical job that totally does it for you and gives your ADD brain a place to hunt and play and produce wondrous creations out of its many impulses; otherwise you will suffer terribly and always feel slighted by your chemistry instead of empowered by it.

    On the other hand, if the deepest desire of your heart is to be able to do a job that your ADD will not let you do well; if you truely with every ounce of you feel that your unmedicated ADD is keeping you from that job and purpose that you so very much crave….then take the pill. Never look back. Never feel guilty.

    All I want for myself and for any reader of this site is for them to chase the things that stimulate them naturally, even if (especially if) those things are not normal, popularly-accepting paths; even if they have to break the mold to do it. Corollary to that is my desire for them to not feel kept from their dreams by something; to not feel held back. For most readers of this site, Adderall holds them back from pursuing their true passions; it holds them in a world they were not meant for. For you and for a couple other people I have come across, it may well be the other way around (as you alluded to): your ADD may be what’s holding you back. Far be it for me to stand in the way of that by over-demonizing something that might actually help in your case. I do not think Adderall is evil on it’s own (graphic at the top of my website notwithsanding), but I do think it’s effects are immoral in 99% of cases. If you’re pretty sure that you fall into the 1%, then go for it. Just be careful. Don’t let it suck you in; that will be a challenge all its own.

    And make damn sure you are making the decision to take the drug without denying some nagging voice that says “go do X and you won’t need it”, other wise the guilt will haunt you.

    But choose a side, because being in the middle sounds like it is killing you.

    Either ADD is holding you back, and you should try pharmaceuticals to fix it with no shame, or your environment is holding you back, and you should spend time looking for (or inventing) an environment where you can thrive naturally.

  42. mo says:

    hello everybody hope all is well ( i know it’s not reading the posts above) but i hope all will be well.I can’t sleep thanks to Adderall of course and i was just tired of studyin complex debt and equity instruments so i went through by bookmarks and this site was there, last time i was here was probably early this year or possibly last year. I’ve been on and off adderall and the thing that really helped me waybe of adderall was well actually hitting the gym but the pressure is too much now uni exams and all. I don’t know about you guys but I think adderall is making me old fast. I know this would probably be of no help to anybody but I guess I just needed a place 2 rant since I have promised myself not 2 log on 2facebook until 22nd which is my last exam. Well I actually have a question. I don’t know how many of you are smokers, but I am on and off kinda thing. Although when I am not taking adderall I have no desire to smoke but when I do I smoke like a chimney, I don’t know why. I am sure there is a perfect scientific explanation to this but I have yet to figure it out. oh and Jillian that instant message thing I understand exactly what you are getting at. Erin I am sorry to hear you are having such a touch time but I can certainly relate to you having abused both adderall and ritalin and pretty much every substance known to man kind my therapist wanted to take me off stimulants and treat me with other stuff but ahh well he didn’t get his way and sadly I am still on again off again of this god forsaken stimulants. @ Charlette I hear you I kinda had that panic attach in summer I was taking adderall no stop for like 4 days hadn’t slept at all studyin for this ASsets exam for uni and when as i was about to enter the examination hall oh God I thought I was having a heart attack, couldn’t breath and my significant other at the time freaked out and wanted to take me to the hospital , I just told her i need to lye down and close my eyes and even then had trouble breathing needless to say I didnt’ write that exam that day. @ Jonathan I totally know when you are sayin about talking to one self it’s weird but I realize I am doing that more and more and in the most awkward way I would ask my self ” hey , how are you doing?” same way I’d ask a friend and I would say it out loud, won’t scream it out loud but just say it loud enough so people standing close to me could hear it but surprisingly nobody has noticed it yet, it’s a blessing I guess. Also, I totally understand when you say why be awesome for other, shit I don’t need an A+ and I don’t need to make a billion dollars and amass the wealth of warren buffett. I’d much rather be a nice loving and caring person then a filthy rich person, well being both would be a plus though. I think I really need to get back to gym that took me away from adderall in the first place and I have a strong feeling it’ll do the same for me again. So off the adderall again then well after the last exam ofcourse. Happy Holidays!

  43. mo says:

    oh I forgot to say this, thanks for the website mike!

  44. Chris says:

    1 year, 1 week and 1 day OFF of Adderall… I am back working as a programmer for the DoD while maintaining my business back home.. I was working for the DoD when I was in when originally prescribed to Adderall, partly due to the long hours put in. But Adderall has become a distant memory.

    This time last year, I was feeling the withdrawals probably laid up on the couch lethargic and tired. No matter what you think.. possibly that it is unbearable. Stick with it, it will pass.

  45. Ashley says:

    Thank you so much for this website. This is my second time quitting adderall. The first time was during July 2009 and I nearly went for 3 weeks without it. I was doing great until my sister unknowingly refilled my prescription for me and the temptation was too hard for me to resist. This time though I’m doing it for good. I was so much happier off of the adderall. I hated the ups and downs and living my life in three hour increments (“its been 2 hours since my last dose, so I should take a pill in 38 minutes” etc). I raced from task to task, though I never quite finished any of them. And it made me impulsively shop, so my finances are a wreck now. Anyway, its my fourth day off of it (I flushed the pills on New Year’s Eve with my boyfriend holding my hand) and I’m so tired. But I know there is no other way. I will say that coffee and B-12 supplements do help somewhat. In a few days I’ll be feeling much better. Looking back over the past 7 years, adderall has made me do some stupid things. But not anymore. I’m in control now. Not some little orange pill.

  46. Evan says:

    Mike,

    Your site has been the catalyst in finally overcoming my crippling dependence on adderall. Please continue responding to posts and updating your site for as long as you can. Its helping people more than you can possibly imagine. Thank you so much, for everything.

  47. Mike says:

    @mo
    Thanks for posting your story! I think you’re totally right about going to the gym having a positive impact on your ability to stay off the pills.

    You know, I once made a habit out of washing my car every Sunday. On the second Sunday, I realized that taking the time to wash my car on Sunday wasn’t just about making my car shiny — it was about spending 1 hour a week thinking lovingly about my car. I’d start with the outside out of a dreary sense of obligation, then during the process I’d fall back in love with my car. So I’d do the wheels. And then I’d drive down to the gas station and vacuum out the interior. Then I’d top off the oil and make a point to get the oil changed early the next day (or whatever).

    The whole week, I felt like I was driving around in a Bentley/Ferrari mix because my car was in such good shape. I’d turn around on my way into my office building and look back at it, adoringly. I’d think “Damn I’ve got good taste. Look at that car. What a gorgeous $400 a month it is.”.

    I think exercising works that way. It’s not so much about fitness so much as it is about all the other positive changes that come with regular fitness.

    Good luck. Don’t let yourself put it off too long if quitting is what you want. At some point “I’ll do it after my finals” may need to become “I’ll do it even though I’ve got finals.”.

    Well, at least in terms of your attitude anyway; don’t want anybody flunking out of school on my account.

    “After finals”, specifically, is an OK deadline if you’re at the end of a semester because it’s near-future event that will come with certainty…you can’t keep putting off finals.

    But don’t set “after finals” as your goal at the beginning of the semester. If you’re at the beginning of the semester drop half your classes and start now.

    And if you’re about to start a semester and you plan to quit, don’t let your Adderall-induced ambitions register you for a course load that you can’t handle while quitting.

    Just throwing all that out there. :-/

    Thanks for the post and let us know when you make progress!

    @Chris
    Awesome man, just awesome.

    @Everybody, especially you new people
    Chris is this Chris. He’s one of the bigger success stories on here.

    @Ashley
    Thanks for the comment! As for the finances: Quitting Adderall can be a little bit of drain because you’ve got to pay for your own laziness. But the price of fast food/to-go food will be far less draining on your purse compared to the impulsive spending you were prone to on Adderall. Still, be careful about spending to make yourself feel better. Focus on little luxuries if you need a fix. Your favorite meal to-go is cheaper than new clothes and still makes you feel better. But your favorite food too often is it’s own kinda drain.

    Like you said: You’re in control now. As you progress with your quitting process, you will feel that control spreading to more and more areas of your life….one day it will spread to finances. And once you acquire a good habit on your own, without Adderall, you’ll keep it much longer, and restart it more quickly when you fall off, because without Adderall you’ll be more adaptable to personal change.

    Lucky for you you’ve got a great boyfriend like that, who’s holding your hand (literally and figuratively) though this. That will make it a thousand times easier on you. Try to tell him what to expect and how he can help.

    @Evan

    Thanks for your comment. FWIW, your comment was the catalyst that got me to come back and catch up on the comments.

    I’m not gone. I’m still here. I’ve temporarily stepped down from my “new post every Tuesday” update schedule, but not permanently.

    There are still plenty more posts to write, plenty more to be said, and several improvements left to make to the structure of the site. I’ve just had to take a time out to finish some other time-sensitive projects. I hope be back to a regular post schedule in a couple months, if not sooner. For now, I need the flexibility of being able to post when I can instead of at a set time.

    @Everybody

    If anybody wants to take a stab at writing and article for this site, I’m totally open to a coauthor or two, especially since I’m losing touch with those first challenges of quitting — it’s been 2 years. 🙂

    If you’re interested, send me a sample article (mike at quittingadderall.com).

  48. Evan says:

    Adderall. Side Effects may include…. atrophying soul.

    Adderall became a negative part of my life when I inadvertently became one of those people who “talks a lot, yet says very little“. I don’t remember the specific conversation that led me to become aware of this but since it’s a common side-effect, that I experienced frequently regardless of the dose, I’m positive my epiphany didn’t take place on the first instance. You know its happened to you at least once while on Adderall, probably more. You ramble on and on without ever making a point. Maybe its because you forgot what your point was, or maybe you never had one to begin with.
    This phenomenon can really apply to any activity where you spend an unusual amount of time obsessing over details. For me it was most obvious during casual conversation, but also during my time composing any works of art, even just sketches(I’m an illustration/graphic design major). I would get so obsessed with making it perfect that I’d get stuck for hours drawing miniscule details eventually forcing me to stay up way too late to complete assignments, starting a viscous cycle and ultimately allowing Adderall to strengthen its grip on my life. During casual conversation it occurs because there’s too many thoughts, interjections, points to make, irrelevant or insignificant pieces of information that you are convinced are necessary for your argument to be air-tight, etc. A seemingly infinite amount of thoughts occupy your mind rapidly making connections over and over again to new thoughts – making it nearly impossible for your chemically altered brain to choose which is important, normal, funny, interesting or worth saying at all. And from my experience this results in a terribly long rant which you never would have even started… had amphetamines not been present.
    While in what Mike describes as the “Honeymoon” stage of your relationship with Adderall, you truly believe your pre-medicated cognitive performance was some locked treasure chest deep within your subconscious never to be opened – and that Adderall is the key to releasing its true potential! When you first start it certainly feels that way doesn’t it. It’s like… hey everything makes sense now. My brain finally works and I‘m ready for anything! In reality your mental capabilities and more specifically overall intelligence hasn’t changed one bit. Mike then beautifully described the drug as bottled complacency on the FAQ page and a more accurate interpretation honestly doesn’t exist. Adderall makes everything fascinating. Every assignment, every job, and every task (no matter how tedious) becomes urgent and exceptionally stimulating… ultimately preventing you from fulfillment and growth in every facet of your life. Just saying the negatives of taking Adderall outweight the positives is the understatement of the century.

    I realize I’m regurgitating a lot of the main points already established here (much more eloquently) by Mike, but writing it all down has been a really effective way of burning in my brain the simple fact that my life has been affected so negatively by Adderall.

    If you still take Adderall and you’re reading this right now, you feel the same way. You might be just beginning to realize it, or it might be something you’ve known a long time.

    Simply ask yourself:

    Am I now the same person I used to be? If not, has Adderall changed me in a positive or negative way?
    Am I now the person I truly want to be? If not, has Adderall helped get me closer to becoming that person?

    Now you just have to decide when you’ll quit.

    Because quitting is inevitable…

    …and there’s no better time than now.

  49. Erin says:

    http://www.aboutlawsuits.com/generic-adderall-recall-barr-dextroamphetamine-amphetamine-5459/?cfemail=posted#cforms3form

    Mike,

    I am dying to talk to you. You’re never going to guess what happened to me. I wrote to you on this blog Sept 16. 2009 stating I had been admitted into the hospital for an adderall overdose. It was the worst week of my life. I’m going to write out the story on your blog as soon as I get some time. People need to hear my story. It is freaking CRAZY!!!

    Here is the post I am waiting to go through on the website link I’ve attached. This is a little brief intro to what happened to me, but basically there was a recall on a batch of adderall that went out between the months of July-August 2009. They were manufactured in June 2009. I was one of the effected patients. The 20 mg pills were distributed in a super potent form. This website mentions one patient was told by his pharmacist some of the effected pills were 60-80 mg!!!!! Here’s what happened to me…

    I got the call from my pharmacy today. Funny, I got these pills on a Monday and was in the emergency room by Friday night. I was in the midst of a flee infestation and thought bugs were hopping on my skin.

    I won’t go into full details, but I will tell everyone, it was by far the worst week of my life. I almost went on FMLA. I experienced a drug induced psychosis. I was having hallucinations and thought people were trying to kill me.I was kicked out of the hospital at 11pm…they knew i didn’t have a car…i was stranded…i walked the streets of Houston at midnight…got picked up by a mexican named oscar…he thought i was a hooker….i heard things…i saw scary things…the next hospital visit said i was maybe bipolar or schizophrenic. I was admitted to a psychitric unit. My mom flew in from Ohio to help me. I thought I literally was CRAZY!!!!
    …………………………………………………………

    I need help. I need to get off these pills. I just started them a month ago again. I was waiting for the phone call to say they were in. After discovering I wasn’t crazy but it was the adderall that almost killed me and destroyed my life, I realize I have to stop no matter how difficult. Please pray for me.

    Thank you so much for all you’ve done for those of us with this affliction.

    Sincerely,

    Erin

  50. Mike says:

    @Erin

    That’s a pretty insane story. I’m sorry you had to go through that. What a terrifying experience.

    Thanks a bunch for posting the details here. Seems kinda messed up to me that they’d kick you out of the hospital like that. Can they do that? I mean, did somebody there pick up on the overdose symptoms? They should be pros at recognizing that kind of stuff. Maybe it was the self-admitted factor. Maybe if you walked in with your mom or something they would have taken you more seriously, instead of assuming you were just some crazy person from off the street (and therefore a waste of resources).

    You sound like you’re several steps beyond critical mass with your Adderall use. Time for the nuclear option: Tell your doctor. And don’t let yourself find another one.

    There’s a passage in the bible that says “And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.”

    I always liked that passage, as it relates to addiction. Always thought it was good advice.

    When you tell your doctor that you’re addicted and need to quit, you’re cutting off your supply; like cutting off the hand that sins.

    Plus your doctor will be able to counsel you and monitor your progress at regular intervals.

  51. Mike says:

    @Evan

    Great post! I think you’ve written one of the better illustrations of the Adderall mindset I’ve seen yet. I’ve linked to your comment from the new Adderall FAQ entry: “I’ve never taken Adderall. What does Adderall feel like?”.

    Totally agree about the ranting/rambling propensity, and the tendency to over-do any work that involves flexible levels of detail. And yes, no better time to quit than now!

  52. Evan says:

    Thanks Mike I really appreciate it!

    Everyone else reading this.. sorry its so long!

    I hope the addition of my story and overall perspective on adderall helps to ward off some potential users from making the mistake we all made. If my comment prevents just one person from taking that godforsaken pill then it was worth writing. I’m sure the thought “how many people have I helped over the years with this site” has crossed your mind before, because it popped into mine! Unfortunately that curiosity will go unanswered, but even though that mystery number isn’t as astronomically high as the number of adderall prescriptions out there, the work you’ve put in towards a cause that’s seemingly invisible to the public is much appreciated.

    Understandably you feel you’ve lost touch a little with the process because your painful yet noble battle to extricate amphetamines from your life began long ago. We both know that battle didn’t end, and it never ends. Yes it gets easier as time goes on, but there’s always a subtle lingering temptation in the back of your mind no matter how evil you know it is. ANYWAYS what I’m getting at is…I would be more that happy to co-author an article or two. Please don’t hesitate to throw me some ideas. If you have anything specific in mind for articles you just haven’t gotten around to I would be more than happy to give em’ a shot. If not, I’ll gladly write something of my own when a good idea presents itself. I also wanted to make a suggestion for your already beautiful layout – starting a new section! Where visitors can post their thoughts, experiences, feelings etc. on adderall – in a central location on the site. The categories I envision are: Side-Effects(adderall users describe all the side effects they experienced positive or negative), Your Story (self-explanatory), Quitting Tips (again.. obvious), and Worst Adderall Experiences (horror stories, also obvious, and needs a better category title). Several other (read: better) categories could definitely be added but those are the best ones I could come up with for now. I thought you might find the idea of an increase in self-sufficiency intriguing. Users posts would serve as another primary source of information and because users frequently post, you wouldn’t have to respond as regularly. I truly appreciate every response you post and they really mean a lot to me (everyone else probably feels the same), but I realize you have a life as well and must manage your time accordingly.

    In the past you’ve made your stance on the importance of users comments clear by very modestly confessing that users posts are the more influential than your articles could ever be. In reality the main articles, the wealth of valuable adderall information, and the experiences you’ve shared will always be the most important part of the site. The site is your creation, so everything you personally post holds a far more credibility than a readers. You see, after fervently reading your words for hours, visitors to the site (myself included) feel they know you, and in turn trust you. I do think that the new section I suggested would be a great addition though J. Expanding your anti-adderall Mecca to include a centralized forum. Just food for thought. I know I’m asking a little too much of you and surely altering quittingadderall.com isn’t anywhere near the top of your priority list. Regardless, every person who stumbles upon your site leaves it with either more knowledge, a more complete understanding, or a sense of relief. Discovering that I wasn’t alone in this struggle made everything easier. That sense of relief i found here and only here, was priceless. Nowhere else can you find the well-educated honest answers that are formulated from real life experience written in a voice that seems to speak directly to your soul. Confirming every nagging suspicion you had, as if you wrote them down yourself. That is what all other sites about adderall lack.

    I’ll spare you from rambling any further. I could write about this for days. (maybe theres some residual adderall lodged in my frontal lobe)

    Thanks for listening!

    Sincerely,
    Evan

  53. Mike says:

    Hi Evan!

    Thanks for the support. I definitely ponder the whole “I wonder how many people I’ve actually helped” question occasionally. Actually, I have a scoreboard in the area of my house where I typically write. On one side it says “Adderall” and on one side it says “Mike”. Under the Adderall side are nine hash marks, one for every year Adderall has taken from me. Under the “Mike” side are hash marks for every person who has ever told me (via comment, email, or whatever) that I helped them quit Adderall. Needless to say, there are way more hash marks in the “Mike” column. I look at that board when I start to feel like I haven’t accomplished anything.

    But there’s an important point to be made about the hash marks in the “Adderall” column. There are nine hash marks on that side. I’ve given Adderall nine points, for nine years taken from me. But I only took Adderall for seven of those years. I’ve added hash marks for each of the last two years because I’m still not where I need to be, due in large part to the time I spent going sideways (perpendicular to my original path) while on Adderall. I’m still working my way back. I have a specific destination in mind (read: career change), and when I get there…into that new life (starting the totally-different day job/career path I want, plus achieving several other side goals that I’m still working on)…I’ll stop counting hash marks in the Adderall column.

    There is a point where I think you are “done” quitting Adderall. I think that the temptation to turn back only exists when you continue to place yourself in environments that crush your soul. Oh, if only I could pop a pill….my soul would feel alive even though it’s still being crushed…at least I could feel happy and productive again…much to nodding the approval of everybody else. To me, that temptation — that pressure — goes away when you find a way to create a life (read: work) for yourself that you naturally enjoy. Now, I’m sure even once I’m in my happy place (if, God willing, I am ever allowed to get there), I may occasionally have the “worthy cause” temptation every now and then, but I doubt it will be more than a passing thought of “heh…I could probably knock this out of the park on Adderall…I wouldn’t have to sit here and struggle at getting my natural flow going”. But that’s it. I can’t imagine ever acting on that thought now (when I’m not done transitioning yet and many aspects of my life are miserably unfulfilling), much less then (when I’m actually enjoying the majority of my day). Because I know that in the ultimately, I’m more productive without Adderall…because I stay focused on the forest (instead of the trees).

    Anyhow. Yet another comment reply turns into an impromptu blog article.

    I like the idea about the categories . I tried a forum once but it got more spam than actual posts. I think I’ll take another shot at some point, but as open comment threads under dedicated post titles or something instead of a forum. When I do, you can be sure I’ll be referring back to your suggestions.

    Again, thanks so much for your kind words and support, Evan — and everybody, for that matter. More to come.

    P.S. Evan — I’ll be emailing you directly about writing some articles.

  54. Cassie says:

    I love this website. I’ve sent it to my best friend and my parents to help explain to them what I’m going through.

    One thing that worries me though is this: flushing pills down the toilet, sink and garbage disposal. This isn’t good for the world around us in the long run.

    http://www.tapitwater.com/blog/2009/11/fda-calls-flushing-the-proper-disposal-for-some-drugs.html

    I’m just a few days off the drug and feel too clogged to write anything else.

    Thanks Mike.

  55. Mike says:

    Thanks for the comment, Cassie!

    Your friends and family can be a huge help in this process. They can also make it infinitely harder. You will probably experience a little of both.

    Nice link on the pill disposal. Summary for people reading this: If you want to dispose of your pills but be “green” about it: crush them, put them in a baggie, mix in water and kitty littler, then stick them in the trash. The kitty litter is for repulsiveness. Maybe make it used kitty litter for added effect. Then just hold out till trash pickup night.

    The first few days are pretty rough. Actually, it can take between 2 weeks and a month for your brain chemicals to recover. Hang in there!

  56. Chris says:

    Hello Mike. Before I go into things, I wanted to say that I was utterly thrilled to find this site. I’ve been looking for a site like this for a few days now. I stumbled on to a post you made in a thread about quiting Vyvanse and/or Adderall on Cafepharma’s Shire forum. Your post (and one other) was really the only post of any real substance. It blows my mind how misinformed and ignorant people are about the effects of ADD medication and what it can really do to you.

    I apologize in advance for the length of this post. Short of one of my closest friends, this the first I’ve talked about this with anyone so I have a lot of thoughts I want to get out I guess.

    Anyway, I suppose it should be pretty obvious why I decided to post here. Such with many others, ADD meds are unhinging my life. For the sake of clarifying though, I’m actually taking Vyvanse, which I’m sure you know is equally addictive and abusable (despite claims by the manufacture…).

    I’ve come to a lot realizations lately regarding the quality of my life. While there are also other issues at hand, what Vyvanse is doing to me is definitely of the most concern. I’m sure it can and will get far worse from here if things are left be, but I can’t help but feel like I’m “hitting bottom” already. It’s a scary thought, but at the same time, kind of liberating in a way. Up until recently, I was in denial about it, more or less. I had the knowledge of what this drug has done to countless people, yet I couldn’t admit to myself that I have become one of thsoe people. I know ultimately, at this stage of things, I have to tell my psychiatrist if I’m going to beat this. I really can’t see managing this one on my own.

    I guess the reason I’m posting here is mainly to gain some outside perspective. I’ve realized a lot of changes in many aspects of my life that I believe stem from abusing the meds but I also realize I’m in no shape to really accurately assess everything myself in a manner that would be of any real help to me. A few of the articles I read on this site pointed out somethings that hadn’t occurred to me. As stated before,I know what I need to do to beat this and I just can’t do this alone.

    As I also mentioned above, there are other issues. While I think my addiction overshadows them now, I believe at least a couple of them helped lead to it. The biggest of them would be depression. I was diagnosed with clinical depression at 14 (I’m 24 now, if you care to know) and have been prescribed countless anti-depressants since then. Short of a few of them working for short periods of time, most had no effect on me. After going through what seemed like dozens of different anti-depressants (I’ve honestly lost count), I decided I had enough of them. My psychiatrist at the time pretty much said there weren’t many other types of anti-depressants left to try out. That was a few years ago. Since then, I’ve yet to try any other anti-depressants.

    Dealing with intense depression for the last 10 years has unfortunately made it quite hard to view myself in a positive manner. I’ve tried to remain optimistic that something will change but in actuality, ten years down the road, it’s only gotten progressively worse (even prior to being prescribed Vyvanse). I really stopped caring what I was doing with my life as a result. I started smoking pot at 16 and drinking shortly there after. I didn’t really see it this way at the time but I was self-medicating. I’ve since quite the smoking (after getting a misdemeanor for possession at 19). I still drink occasionally, but I don’t see it as medicating anymore. If anything, I dislike the feeling of being drunk now actually.

    I think it’s that kind of stuff that set the foundation for my addiction.

    I went to a psychiatrist about 7 months ago for the first time in a long time (my mom urged me to do it). I told him my history of depression and my reluctance to get back on anti-depressants. He acknowledged that but based on some of my statements throughout and some question he asked me, he said I may also suffer from ADD. I wasn’t crazy about the idea of more pills again but it was a different approach so I thought I’d at least try it out.

    A started off taking it as directed(30mg/once daily). Having never used amphetamines or any kind of stimulant prior to this, Vyvanse was an utterly new experience. As a lot of people will attest, the initial results were amazing. The mild euphoria and “push” I got from just 30mgs was actually helpful at first, I’d say. My psychiatrist seemed to agree so he decided to keep me on it.

    Shortly thereafter, I started pondering possible benefits of upping the dose. Regardless of being fully aware of the fact that it’s basically diluted speed, I felt compelled to at least try it once. I did a little research before-hand (wish I would have found this site then..) and determined that it probably wouldn’t land me in the hospital. Satisfied with that knowledge, I doubled my next dose. Of course, that push was intensified substantially. I felt motivated to do all sorts of things. I ended up playing my guitar for a couple of hours. Pretty much until my fingers started getting sore. My mind was spitting out all sorts of ideas, left and right. The majority of them, I don’t even remember but I recall a feeling of overall satisfaction with most of them.

    Trying to wrap this up here… As you figure, it wasn’t long before this turned into a semi-regular thing. The self-medicating started again. The fact that it’s a prescription drug made it somewhat easier to justify to myself. Pretty twisted, but I now see that as some of the first indications of this addiction.

    When I started losing a visible amount of weight, I told myself to lay off it a bit. Of course, that has proved easier said than done.
    I held off for three or four days before caving. After repeating this process a few times with basically the same results, I just slowly started accepting the addiction, in a way. I started to accommodate it, without the shame. This is probably the most pivotal point of change in my personality and mentality. This went on for a bit, all the while, I slipped further and further into this hole and not even really realizing just how deep it was getting. It took a couple pretty intense withdrawal spells to come to some serious realizations of what this horrible drug has really done to me.

    Even in all my unhappiness and dissatisfaction prior to Vyvanse, I had some level of respect for myself. In my darkest days, I’d never considered suicide as a solution. In the drug’s tightest grip, I could feel myself declining towards what feels like passive suicide and yet, I couldn’t say no to it.

    Truth be told I still can’t really say no to it, but something has changed. I definitely had a wake-up call. Not sure how I’m going to go about it yet, but I’m going talk to my psychiatrist about it one way or another.

    Thanks for creating this site. There are a lot of online resources for stimulant abuse but nothing quite as specialized and intensive as this. I’ve bookmarked it and plan on reading more of it ASAP.

    -Chris

  57. Cassie says:

    Chris –

    This is Cassie from right above your comment. I cannot believe how similar our stories are; so much so that I feel impelled to tell you. I too am 24 and have been diagnosed with, and therefore prescribed a variety of anti-depressants, since I was 14. I too justified my use of prescription stimulants and started over taking them the same way you described your start. I too, played the guitar for hours on end, until my fingers were sore when hopped up on my prescribed speed. I too have bookmarked this site. I’m done with saying “I too” even though there are other similarities in our stories.

    I just wanted to write and say you’re not alone. At all.

    I also wanted to tell you what I’ve decided to do about my habit. The past 6 years I have stopped taking adderall only to start again. At first, it was great, and I got A’s in school; now I’m flunking out because I stopped going to class because I took so much that I was physically exhausted and weak and very paranoid about the way I look. I thought I could run through the process of school work with my speed instead of walking to class everyday.

    I’m not hopped up anymore on it; I haven’t taken a pill in a week and a day; so I feel like I cannot describe it as thouroghly (sp – I know) as I once could; give me a few months and maybe I’ll explain it better. Like Mike.

    Regardless – this is what I’m doing; I started going to AA/NA. I can’t get out of bed in the morning because I’m so tired; but I do make a point to get out for an hour and go to one of these meetings. 90 meetings in 90 days. It sounds like a lot of people get through this addiction without going to these groups and I’m incredibly jealous of their strength; but I am a weak person and don’t have a good support system where I am. So far, AA and NA people have been so open to me and while a lot of their stories don’t exactly coincide with mine, the pain behind their stories does, as does the advice they give. Sometimes, I feel really lame because these people have been to jail, lost partners, and kids and houses and etc… and I’m just a little pill popper. But at one meeting, someone said that you don’t have to do awful things to go to AA – they knew a woman in AA who never drank outside her kitchen but she knew she had a problem with addiction. Tonight at a meeting someone talked about how they were trying to run through life instead of walk through life and I totally related to that. When I think about never doing adderall again, I get mad anxiety; someone at a meeting said this as well (only about drinking) and their sponser said ‘that’s ok. just try not to do it today.’ and again that completely resonated with me. These people have what I want: a clear head; courage; serenity; breathing room; balance; support; reality. And that serenity prayer; I have no clue what “God” is but I find peace in just reminding myself : Cassie/”God”/Creator, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

    I know some people diss AA and call it “cultish” but the truth is humans are a tribal species. I have tried so many times to stop taking this drug by myself and it never worked for me; for once (and granted it’s only been a week and a day) I feel like I have some support. I have not been able to quit by myself (some can obviously – I cannot, I always fail at this). I need some help; more than just anti-depressants and therapists and this brilliant website. I need something and some people to remind me every day not to call my doctor and manipulate her to give me more of a drug that is ruining/controlling my life.

    I hope this comment isn’t super lame or that it isn’t too poorly written or that it sounds too much like I’ve got it as figured out as Mike. I just wanted to tell you the step I’ve decided to take this time and tell you I’m starting, ever so slowly, to feel a little better because I’ve met some people to talk to or go get coffee with when really I want to call my doctor for a re-fill.

    Good luck. Where ever you are, know I feel you brother. I’m in the same tiny boat and the sea is so fucking wide – but I think, for the first time in years, I might have glimpsed land. I hope. I hope. I hope.

    – Cassie

  58. Chris says:

    Hi Cassie. Thanks so much for your input. Before anything else, I wanted to specifically comment on this section:

    “I hope this comment isn’t super lame or that it isn’t too poorly written or that it sounds too much like I’ve got it as figured out as Mike. I just wanted to tell you the step I’ve decided to take this time and tell you I’m starting, ever so slowly, to feel a little better because I’ve met some people to talk to or go get coffee with when really I want to call my doctor for a re-fill.”

    “Super lame” or “poorly written” are the last phrases I would use to describe your post. It honestly made my morning (and probably the rest of my day)! I got up feeling extremely lethargic and unmotivated and one of the first things that popped into my head was that overwhelming urge to pop a few Vyvanse. I almost did, actually. Fighting the urge, I decided to get on my computer and get on this site. I’m really glad I did. The second I realized someone had responded to my post, a spark lit up inside me. I can’t exactly explain it or even completely make sense of it, but even before reading your post, this feeling of relief came over me.

    “I just wanted to write and say you’re not alone. At all.”

    It’s kind of funny. We’ve all heard that phrase, or some variation of it, throughout our lives. It’s almost become a cliche. There’s a lot of truth to it, but its impact really doesn’t hit you until you hear it from someone else, relating to you.

    Honestly, up until yesterday, I felt utterly alone in regards to my addiction. As I stated before, only one person in my life knows of my struggle, and he’s only seen the surface. I’m sure a good deal of friends & family would be far more understanding than I envision. The overwhelming sense of shame that I’ve let a fucking pill dictate my life for the last 7 months is what has kept me from reaching out to them. That, and the whole mentality that this would be a burden on them. These are things I need to get past. I’m working on it though.

    As for your involvement with AA/NA, I think that’s a great way to do it. When I got that misdemeanor for possession of marijuana five years ago, part of my sentence was to go to NA meetings. At 19, I was a bit of a self-centered prick. I really didn’t want to be there and didn’t care all that much about what people had to say. There is/was no denying that it does work for those who want it in their life though. I’ve come to that part of my life where I not only need that in my life, but I’m beginning to WANT it.

    On that note, I just recalled something I heard at one of the meetings (a few actually). A lot of people with addiction problems go in and out of AA/NA multiple times throughout their life. For a lot of those people, the first time is on court order (like me). Many times, that first instance doesn’t have much impact on them. At that point, most don’t see the addiction. Even if they have, it hasn’t really started to eat away at them (mentally and/or physically). I now understand this better than I ever thought I had.

    Again, thanks for your words! They were very helpful. I know this is only the very beginning of the recovery process, but even so, it feels like a huge step in the right direction.

    -Chris

  59. Mike says:

    @Chris

    Really enjoying reading your comments. Thanks for sharing everything!

    Quick question on the 10-year depression thing, since that makes me curious: Is there a time when are you NOT thinking about how worthless everything is? Like, when you’re doing something like hanging out with friends, water skiing, playing video games, making out….does the depression persist? Or is it so bad that you can’t bring yourself to do any of those things? Is there an environment or activity that relieves the depression at all? Also: Is there a fix that you can conceive of in you mind? Even if that fix is a limited dose of stimulants? I’m mostly referring to the depression as it existed before your recent bout with stimulants, since that’s probably a more pure gauge.

    Glad you like the site, and glad to have you as a reader.

    @Cassie

    If you’re about to hit the two week mark, keep going. Generally it takes 2-4 weeks for your brain to recover (chemically) from a drug. Just focus on hitting that mark first. Don’t get two discouraged during that first month because your brain is still in recovery mode (during which it will hit you with all kinds of unpleasant sadnesses).

    Also, I agree with Chris: Your comment was far from super-lame or poorly written. To date, I don’t think I’ve gotten a super-lame comment yet. This site doesn’t get many trivial comments…most of them have substance, like yours (I especially liked that bit about being a tribal species as it relates to NA). You shared your story and your points eloquently. That’s just the just-quit-Adderall insecurity talking. Get used to it. It’s gonna want to talk a lot. Don’t let it keep you down.

    It’s funny what you said about feeling a little out of place as a just a little pill popper in N/A. These drugs like Adderall and Vyvanse are so different from other typical drugs…it’s such a different kind of mentality that uses them. People use most narcotics to escape life. People use Adderall because they want to embrace life and they don’t feel like they can adequately do that on their own. Typical drug use represents self-destruction; Adderall drug use represents an insecurity. Some ways the same; some ways totally different.

    Please come back and post some more details on you NA meetings! I think everybody here could benefit from hearing what it’s like in there for little pill poppers.

  60. Chris says:

    Hi Mike.

    To answer your first question: Yes, to some degree, I suppose so. My depression has always come and gone, it just seems that over the years, more and more of the time, I find myself in a depressed mood. Forgive me if any of this strikes you as rambling and/or unnecessary but I think the easiest way for me to answer your questions would be to give you a bit of a deeper insight and history of the depression since its beginning. Within the first few months of my depression developing, I started noticing a pattern of when it came on. Every three weeks, I’d go into a week (sometimes a few days longer) of feeling extremely depressed. Often, this three week pattern was accurate to the day (21 days after my last episode, as I started to call them). My mom even noticed it. Adding meds to the equation eventually altered that. One such medication even seemed to increase how often I cycled in and out. It was like every other week. I can’t say for sure that those meds were the sole cause of that change but I noticed the change within a couple weeks of beginning that medication.

    As I mentioned in my first post, there were a few times where certain meds worked temporarily. In all three cases, they stopped working within the first six months. The most effective of them stopped working about six months after starting it. While there are things that can elevate the depressed mood, I haven’t really noticed any triggers that set it off. Likewise, I haven’t been able to find anything that really relieves it. Sometimes, there are things I can do to distract myself somewhat, but that’s usually in less intense levels of depression. In rare cases (has only happened a few times thankfully), I would get so despondent, I wouldn’t leave the house and rarely even my room for as long as a week. I’d just lie in bed, staring at the wall or sleep for extended periods of time. In those times, I couldn’t really bring myself to do anything else. Any attempts at productivity or activity of any sort really seemed to worsen it.

    If you’d like clarification on any of this or have further questions about it, feel free to ask. I’m pretty open in regards to talking about my depression, in most cases.

    I’d also like to give a bit of a progress report of sorts, since my last post. The last few days have been quite intense. Before anything else, I thought I’d give cold turkey one more shot. I guess, ultimately, it played out more or less like previous attempts. I didn’t take any for 3 days then buckled on the forth (today). I buckled and ended up taking two pills (60mgs) because the physical effects of the withdrawal were driving me up the wall. It felt like my skin was crawling and I couldn’t even manage going back to sleep as a way of escaping it. I really didn’t want to take them but I just felt so shitty. Trying to look at it optimistically though, 60mgs is better than 120-150mgs, I guess. I took them telling myself it was to help with the withdrawal effects and not so I could get that tweaked out feeling. Looking at it that way, I think weening myself off it may be a better tactic. I guess I’m just afraid that could backfire on me.

    I really don’t think I could just limit how much I take and keep it at a set level. Addiction, in one form or another, runs pretty strong in my dad’s side of the family. My dad was an alcoholic for a number of years before I was born, and a couple of his siblings (he’s one of seven) have battled addiction too. One of my aunt’s had been battling amphetamine addiction longer than I’ve been alive. She’s sober now, but only after multiple relapses leading to rehab programs and finally prison for a few years. I feel that cutting it out completely would be by best option.

    Finally, I thought I’d list something I did differently with the cold turkey attempt: Each day I wrote down things like symptoms of the withdrawal as they arose, how I felt emotionally at one time or another, how I slept, etc. At the end of the day though, I would write down at least one positive aspect or event that happened. An good example of that was a significant increase in appetite. In the three days that I wasn’t taking the Vyvanse, I ate A LOT. I was snacking all throughout the day. I plan on showing these notes to my psychiatrist when I tell him my situation. My next appt. is not until early next month but I think I’m going to have to try and reschedule it for earlier.

    One last thing I’d like to ask about (just remembered it): Are nightmares a common symptom of withdrawal? I normally don’t even remember most of my dreams but the last few nights, I’ve had a couple of pretty vivid and disturbing nightmares. In all cases, I jolted out of these nightmares at their most intense moments.

    Anyway, thank you for responding Mike. I’ll continue to post updates on how things progress with this. Even with the relapse today, I feel confident that I can beat this, however hard it proves.

  61. TRISTA says:

    Hi anyone or everyone that is here and/or willing to listen. I am right along every single one of these blogs on this site that has to do with adderall (besides the ones that are also abusing and using any other form of alcohol and drugs, thank the good lord!). But this is serious! So serious that I am doing everything I can to try and figure out how and the heck I am going to get my life back! Well whatever life you want to consider wayyy back when I was only 17. But I am now 26 almost 27 years old. Which means I have gone through life for the past 10 yrs and been completly dependent on this stupid little pill. I am ruining my life, but what kills me more is that I have 2 sweet little girls that need there mother. A mom that is willing to sit and listen and play, nurture and hold, love and kiss them. Rather then being to busy or so caught up in my own little world of what I consider an adderall zone that no one else is allowed to enter. IT’s sick and its twisted! I never knew at the beggining what and how bad this pill really was. And I know i really didnt give a crap at the time if it really was or not…..Man those were the days! It seemed my whole world had changed. It was PERFECT! And I had the perfect everything to prove it too! 18 young, beautiful, addicted to adderall and the gym! I had everyone both male and female scoping me out for what seemed like years. and come on who whouldnt want that? Especially when you are that young and what seems to be in your prime! Well I have to agree with the rest of you all on here what comes up must come down. And I must say I am at the worst I have ever been in my life! Addderall has taken over me! I cant function unless I have a pill first thing in the morning. I used to take 20mg’s a day then 30 then 45 now I am prob around a good 50 or 60mg’s a day. Around the holidays it was I am sure up closer to 80 or more. Which I have since read is nothing compared to some others on here but it still doesn’t make it any better. All I have to say is whomever is just starting to take this medication STOP! STOP right now! Its not worth it! I need help! IT is so disgusting to see what it all comes down to. And every single thing on here that everyone has ever wrote about adderall is all correct not even to be exagerated. I thoguht since it was presscriped it was ok. Shortly after I started figuring out that this is not normal and it was most likely not something I want to mess around with even if my dr prescribed it to me. But I was way too far gone by that point. Now 10yrs later, I can see and hear myself to the kind of damage I may be having on my girls. ITs just got to be worse over these last months., and I am now at my breaking point. To see and look into my little 2 yr olds eyes begging and needing me to give her the attention and love that she deserves but I cant stop what I am doing because I am so fixated on getting done whatever I need to get done. And whats even more torturing is that I have no one to tal to about this. I have been with my husband now for 8 yrs and have managed to keep this addiction from him the whole time! Crazy as it seems but he doesnt know that I need a little orange pill just to accomplish any 1 little thing as a duty as a wife and mother. I dont know if he will even still love me after I stop taking them, he as only ever known me while I have been taking them. I am depressed, in the worst way you can think of. PLease anyone if you have any advice or anything on how and what i can do to begin this process and kicking this addiction please let me know. I need to do it for my me, I need to do it for my family, for my precious little girls who need their mommy.

  62. Chris says:

    Hi Trista. While I’ve only been on ADD medication for 7 months, I feel that I’ve reached the same personal hell you talk about. Jumping out of a plane without a parachute is the best example I can think to describe just how fast and hard I hit bottom as a result of the pills. While it feels like I’m still falling, I’m doing everything in my power to get off this drug and make changes for the better. One of the things I’m noticing that is helping me, is helping others. It gives me a lot of self-satisfaction, I guess. It may not provide much immediate results, but it puts me in a positive mindset one really needs to help themselves. I’m not in the best place to be giving out advice, but I feel compelled to help you, if even in the smallest way.

    You mentioned you have no one to talk to about this. I think the first and best person to talk to is your husband. It may sound crazy but if anyone is likely to be understanding (even in least), it will be him. A support structure is key to recovery in addiction and what better person than your soul-mate? He committed himself to you in marrying and having two kids with you. Given that, it’s very likely he will still be committed to helping you overcome this, however hard it be. It won’t be easy for either of you, I’m sure, but it’s better for you, your relationship, and your family.

    This motivation to break free of my addiction has just come about in the last few weeks but I’m already realizing that it would be impossible for me to do it alone. I need people to know. I’ve told a couple friends, I’m working on telling my family, and I’ll be talking to my psychiatrist too.

    Build a support structure. You need external motivation to quit.

  63. Jackie says:

    Thank you to everyone for posting on this site. I’ve been taking adderall for over 3 years and I feel like I’ve lost control. I am scared to stop, but I want to.

    Erin – THANK YOU. I also had the adderall that was recalled. I felt like there were bugs crawling in my skin and had a huge outbreak that looked like a rash all over my body. I was completely paranoid. I spoke with several doctors and one of them treated me as if I was crazy. I thought I lost it completely. I also destroyed a friendship in the process.

    I want to stop this once and for all.

    Mike — THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.

  64. Mike says:

    You’re very welcome, Jackie.

    Good luck. If nothing else, quitting Adderall is a grand experience in what you said that you want: control.

    Without Adderall, nothing happens without your concentrated, controlled willpower making it so. No more limitless energy. No more numbness to effort. You will feel the friction of every inch you travel forward. And that will make you choose your travels wisely….it will make you control them.

    Good luck. Glad to have you as a reader.

  65. Nick says:

    A lot of what I read in this article and posting is what I am going through right now. I was prescribed adderall about 11 months ago because I was overloaded at work. I was very stressed out and would very often forget tasks that were given to me and forget to call clients back all the time.

    I started on 10 mg of adderall twice a day. Then bumped to 20mg twice a day. Now I am on 20 mg XR twice a day. For a long time I thought this drug was the best thing that ever happened to me. My work was going great. I could finally concentrate and get things done. Not just work my golf game became better than ever and it seems there was nothing that I could not do.

    My wife moved jobs and we went without health insurance for about 3 months. I had to switch back to non XR due to the price. That is when the roller coaster ride down began. I began not being motivated at all until the adderall kicked in and then I could go. I am now back on the XR. That has changed also. Now I am having trouble going to sleep. The problem is I don’t want to go to sleep. I feel like I need to be up as long as possible. Then I get 7-8 hours of sleep. When I wake up I feel as if I have been hit by a train. My eyes are so red it is scary. I am exhausted, in a terrible mood, very grumpy, and feel very vulnerable. The scary part is it takes the adderall almost 4 hours to kick in if it does at all. If I forget to take a dose there is not anyone that would want to be around me due to my attitude. I tent to snap easily and get angry over things that are not that big of a deal. I have also noticed that my caffeine intake has gone way up.

    Now the reason that I took adderall in the first place is gone (help with work). I still have a job but I am not motivated at all to work. My drive is gone. I used to be an outgoing person and I feel as if that person is hiding somewhere and is afraid to come out. My wife and I argue and I feel like it is my overall attitude that makes things blow up. While at work whenever someone comes up to me and asks me a question I just get very irritated and want them to go away. I just want to be left alone and not be bothered by anyone. I feel like answering my phone is a chore. I again I am so frustrated with the fact that I have to be talking to someone.
    I have decided that I no longer want to have this drug run my life anymore. I am going to the doctor tomorrow to see about getting off of adderall.

    The scary part for me is I read that people are in hell while trying to quit for the first month. I have an opportunity to get a great job in the next couple of weeks. I do not want to look like crap for the interview. But I also want the real me at the interview and not the person that I have become. I know I have not been on adderall for nearly as long as some of the others on this forum but I feel like my body is just as dependent. If I forget to take my dose I will go back home to get it. If I run out before I refill the script I will go to my doctors and lie saying that I called in a refill to the office and they never got back to me so I don’t have to wait.

    I will post updates on my battle with Adderall. A battle I will win!

    Thanks for having this site up I know I will be looking to it for support.

  66. Mike says:

    Hi Nick,

    Thanks for posting. I think you’ll be alright in that job interview without Adderall. When it comes to situations like that (interpersonal) it os to your advantge to br calm, collected, and feeling like yourself. You don’t want to be sitting in that interview chair freaking out over whether you’re too tweaked out and might ramble or something. Now, actually DOING the job, on the other hand…that might be a bit trickier without Adderall.

    Most of the hell people talk about refers to doing mentally-demanding work for several hours a day without their pills (and to suddenly wanting WAY more than 6 hours of sleep every night).

    But without the work/sleep factor, quitting Adderall wouldn’t be so bad. You feel like yourself again almost instantly. You just can’t do any hard work. The hours where you don’t have to work and can do whatever are actually pretty enjoyable without pills.

    Anyhow, good luck. Post updates!

  67. Misty says:

    Thanks for setting up this challenge! I am all for it and it helps knowin that I got others backing me and going through the same thing. So how d you stay awake during the crash? I get so sleepy when I run out and can barely keep my eyes open

  68. Mike says:

    Hi Misty!

    Short answer: I didn’t stay awake during the crash. :-p

    Give it a couple weeks for your chemistry to rebound from the drug, start exercising a little, and get on a normal sleep schedule. You’ll get some energy back.

  69. Elizabeth says:

    Wow- so I found this site 2 days ago and it inspired me to cut my dose in half for the last two days.

    What prompted me to keyword “quitting Adderall” was an incident that I had earlier this month. My doctor’s receptionist almost wouldn’t let me be seen without a copay that I did not have and I ended up in tears. I was practically begging. I even told the nurse very forcefully, “I am a mother of two and I will be sleeping all weekend if I don’t leave this office with a prescription today!” This was a huge wake up call for me because it is 100% true- I was down to nothing by the time they got me in. She let me in and probably thought that I was insane.

    I would love to include the details my journey thus far- but I am at work and on a lower dose of Adderall and this very website has been distracting me a bit today. 🙂 I will try to do this at home sometime.

    It is so much easier for me to force myself to focus than it is for me to force myself to eat small portions and avoid snacking. But I have a problem with Adderall and I have known it for a long time. So it’s time. I am terrified. My husband is already irratated with my “laziness and moodiness”. I guess he is really in for it.

    Thanks for this site. I hope to become a success story.

  70. Mike says:

    Hi Elizabeth!

    Thanks for posting your story. You know, for all the rationalizations you build up around Adderall use. For all the good you think it does for you; it’s hard not to feel like a junkie when you’re knocking on your psychiatrist’s door with more desperation than you’re comfortable admitting to yourself.

    Let yourself slide a little on the snacking if you have to. I can’t tell you how many extra cigarette breaks I took when I first quit Adderall. And I still eat constantly all day even now. I just keep snacking to keep myself satisfied with sitting at my desk doing boring work all day. They say obese people don’t over-eat because they’re hungry; they over-eat because they need the dopamine rush from intaking food. That’s pretty much how/why I think I eat all day…not out of hunger but out of a dull and constant misery that I’m trying to offset.

    That said, chewing gum helps a lot. I also try to snack on healthy stuff and drink only water to minimize the damage. Plus I work out pretty much every day so it kinda evens out.

    As for your husband: OK, I know this might be a little awkward of me to say, but one of the semi-benefits of quitting Adderall is that it increases your sex drive. Maybe tell/show your husband that and see if it makes him a bit more accommodating and pliable.

    The laziness can get better if you really work at it (hint: pretend your couch and bed are electrified and avoid touching them at all costs, because the second your butt touches one of them your next 2+ hours are f’d). The moodiness is going to double, but will balance out the more you work on the laziness. It takes consistent logical thinking and impulse control to overcome the laziness, which will end up helping you control your moods too. Plus if you stay busy you don’t have time to sit around and let your emotions come to a boil.

    Make sure to show him progress. And really, do what you can to get him on your side through this. If he’s against you/disapproving of you it’s going to make it so much harder for you.

  71. Elizabeth says:

    Thanks for the quick reply, Mike! One of the most important components of quitting sucessfully is support and this website is perfect for that. I know that some people would be in a structured rehablitaion setting, but that is not for me.
    I appreciate your insight. I am going to print this out for my husband. He is more supportive than I let on, we happened to have had a bad night the day before I posted that.
    Does anyone know anything about tics and obsessions caused by Adderall? I have developed an awful habit of touching my hair- a lot- I did it a little before Adderall but now I can’t keep my hands off of it. I notice that it is better now that I am taking less. It sounds nuts but I was just wondering if anyone else had a similar experience..

  72. Mike says:

    Hi Elizabeth,

    Tics and obsessions are definitely accelerated by Adderall. It focuses you more all around…not just on your work but on your compulsions too. And focusing on compulsions usually makes them worse and more frequent. Plus I kind of view tics as your brain venting nervous energy, which you have way more of on Adderall.

    The good news is that A) As you’ve discovered, you’ll have less tics when you cut your dosage down and B) You can often permanently eliminate specific tics with a week or two of willfully controlling them. It’s really hard at first, because it’s a compulsive act that often occurs quickly, before you’ve really had time to think about what you’re doing.

    Try this: Try your best not to touch your hair at all for a week. Tics are still going to happen. But you need to catch it as quickly as you can. As soon as you realize what you’re doing, think of a loud angry buzzer going BBBZZZZZZ! Kind of like when you touch the sides in Operation.

    Keep buzzing yourself and pulling your hand away quickly as soon as you notice. At first, you may not notice until after you’ve already touched your hair and put your hand back down…still buzz and scold yourself fiercely. The next time you might not consciously realize what you’re doing until you’re hand has been touching your hair for like 10 seconds already. Still, as soon as you realize, yank your hand away and buzz yourself.

    As you keep doing this, you build up the association in your mind of “touching hair = BZZZZZ!! (plus unpleasant self-scolding). Gradually, you will catch yourself sooner and sooner. Soon you’ll be able to catch your hand as it’s going up before it even touches your hair. And eventually you’ll catch the urge before your hand even moves.

    When you can catch the tic right when it starts as an urge — when you can stop it from physically manifesting at all — that’s when you’re on your way to not having the urge itself anymore, which will happen within a couple of weeks of never touching your hair. Then it’ll just be normal not to touch it and you won’t think about it anymore.

    FWIW, in behavioral psychology, this is called “shaping” — you’re gradually and incrementally “shaping” your behavior towards the desired end.

    Anyhow, good luck! Keep us updated!

  73. Chris says:

    Hey Mike,

    Thought I’d stop by and mention that I’ve now been clean from Vyvanse for just over two months now! I know, ultimately, I am the one who made this change in my life, but I thank you and your site for inspiring me to make that change. Had I not found this site, I may have very well still been stuck in that horrible place in my life.

    Since then, things are really starting to turn around. While I’m still dealing with some issues with depression, I’m dealing with it a lot better. I’ve come to realize that I really let pessimism take control of my life. I spent too much time thinking about what I can’t do and not focusing enough on my strengths. Another thing is that I have somewhat of an issue with bottling emotions up. I always kept so much inside until it got to be too much. It’s still not easy for me to talk openly about things that really bother me, I guess, but I’m seeing a therapist and it seems to be doing some good.

    I’ve been eating a lot healthier than I have in a long time and have been skating on an almost daily basis to keep in shape. I’ve gone from 123 to 140lbs. so far.

    Overcoming the worst of the recovery process was one of the most horrible experiences of my life. Amphetamine withdrawal is no joke! I feel that I’ve gained a lot of good perspective from it all though and I’ve come out a far more optimistic person. I think to myself, I’ve overcome this, so what else am I capable of?

    Keep on doing what you do with this site. I’ve been following it weekly and will continue to! I feel lucky to have found this site because really, if I didn’t, who knows where I would be now.

    One last thing before I rap this up and hit the sack… I like the store feature. As of right now, there’s nothing there I really need from it but I will definitely keep my eye on it in the future. I’d love to support you and your site as you’ve been of huge support to me!

  74. Mike says:

    @ Chris,

    Congrats on hitting the 2 months mark! At 2 month’s you’re definitely over the worst part. Sucked, didn’t it?

    That realization that you let pessimism take control of your life is a pretty stunning revelation. Hell, I think you just helped me out a little bit by sharing that one. I probably needed to hear it.

    You know, about the bottling up emotions, I think that’s actually a good place to be, because you’ve got a huge potential to really heal yourself just by letting them out (e.g., in therapy). In a twisted way, if you’ve been bottling up your emotions, you’ve got a lot to look forward to in terms of healing. Kind of like somebody who’s had a giant pimple on their heart forever, and then one day they figure out that they can pop it.

    So you’ve been skating? Like ice skates? Cool. Would have never thought of either of those. That’s probably a pretty fun way to burn some carbs. I’m terrible at skating. Think you gotta start that one young. I’m always impressed by the people who fly by me effortlessly while I’m being helped back to my feet by some laughing and throughly entertained friend.

    And yes, if nothing else quitting Adderall will give you all the perspective you can stand. I’m glad you came out of it so well (i.e., more optimistic). That’s great to hear. Now that you’re asking the question “What else am I capable of?”, the next question is “What’s next?”. 🙂

    On the store page: Yeah I think it came out well. No pressure haha.

    Big thanks for continuing to support the site. Means a lot. And keeps me posting haha.

  75. Chris says:

    Actually, by skating, I meant skateboarding. lol Sorry, I didn’t clarify that well. I’m used to people knowing what I’m talking about. I’m horrible at ice skating. The few times that I’ve tried it, I spent most of my time on my ass.

  76. Chris says:

    This is Chris..the 1st Chris to post here in 2008. not to confuse.
    I wanted to update that its been 1 year and 4 months! Good to see people making the break from these crutches. Not only that, but another Chris (and a fellow Sk8er)

    be well and be strong guys, it is worth it.

  77. Nick says:

    I have read all the articles on the site and I have to say it’s 100% true. I’m 17 years old and I have been no adderall xr for 10 years now. I first used to take just 30mg for about 6 years then I upped my dose to 40mg which I’ve been taking for about 4 years now. The problem that I am having about quiting is I’m scared. I’m scared because I don’t know who` the real “me” is. I’ve taken adderall pretty much every day for 10 years without taking any long periods of time without it. I have always convinced myself since a medical professional is telling me I need to take the medication then I feel I have to take it. Frankly I cannot see myself off the medication because once again I’ve been on it for so long. Honestly I’m scared that I will lose the capabilities that I’m just so used too. I feel as though I’m a very deep thinking intellectual individual. I also am afraid I will lose the ability to be “me” which I’ve been so accustomed to, but frankly I don’t know who I really am.. I have pledged to myself that I am going to quit the medication cold turkey and that’s what I plan on doing. I know I have the will power to do so, I mean I was able to quit a lifestyle which consisted of playing video games and eating the worst foods, to losing 60 pounds and staying on the healthiest diet you can imagine for 2 years. I’m scared of losing my drive for things, my passion and discipline. I’m happy of who I am while I’m on it with career and passion, but socially I’m miserable I’m interested in finding out the true me, and now I think it’s time for me to find out, I’m sick and tired of relying on this drug, I always told myself I could never be addicted to anything but after reading your article I realized I am addicted to adderall, and now I understand what it’s like.. Without this website I don’t think I would be able to even attempt it. I’m going to give it my all and hope for the best. I just have one question for anyone, is there any medications out there to help with my ADHD?? I have so much trouble concentrating, which I hope I can have help with that.

  78. Nick says:

    Just one more question when I don’t take my medicine for a day I feel like total crap, as if I can’t do anything, I don’t want to do anything, and just feel like groggy and out of control in a sense hyper too. Is this normal for this too happen?

  79. Mike says:

    @Nick

    Thanks for you comment. Yours is kind of a new situation for me (being on Adderall since you were 7), so you should definitely get a second opinion. But here’s my 2 cents…

    It’s totally normal to feel like total crap off the meds, especially since you’ve been taking it for the majority of your life. You’re dealing with dopamine withdrawal (your happy juices stop flowing as much). That crappy feeling doesn’t have to be permanent. The worst of it wears off in 2 weeks to 1 month (when you brain stops going through withdrawal).

    I have good news and bad news for you.

    Bad news: You’re in for a hell of a struggle to figure out who you are without the meds. If you’ve been on it since you were 7 years old, you have really no memory of not being on the drug. You don’t know what it’s like to study and do homework using only willpower and unaided, controlled focus. You can’t think back and remember “yeah, that was a pain in the ass, but I managed back then, so I can probably manage now”. You don’t have anything like that…no past strength to give you something to get back to.

    Everything is new to you. And everything is going to suddenly get much, much more difficult, even after you get through the first month of withdrawals.

    Your study habits, and work eithic will have to be re-built from scratch with no frame of reference (because you’ve been on it your whole life), which could prove damaging to your academic performance.

    It will also make that diet harder to maintain at first (most people turn to food after quitting because they don’t have Adderall suppressing their appetite anymore). Add some regular exercise and you can minimize/negate this part.

    Now the good news:

    1. Like you said, if you have the will power to diet yourself down 60 pounds, then you may well have the strength to pull this off.

    2. As long as you can stave off the depression, you should improve socially. In fact, you’re probably going to want to make lots of excuses not to do work, which means jumping at any social opportunities. Plus your sense of humor may improve (it does for older people who quit, but again, I’m not sure what the rules are with somebody who’s taken it their whole life).

    3. Your brain hasn’t finished growing yet. Current theories suggest that the frontal lobe (personality, impulse control, attention span) doesn’t stop maturing until age 25-30. So, physically, this is a great time to quit, because your brain is still pretty flexible and receptive to personality change.

    4. You will keep your drive and your deep intellect. You couldn’t shake those things even if you wanted to. It’s only your ability to do something about your inner drive that will be handicapped for a while, which can drive you nuts (having the desire but not enough will/concentration/effort), but ultimately your drive and intellect will win out.

    On the ADHD: That’s going to get way, way worse at first. You’ll have to wait out that first month (so the withdrawals finish) and then really work at it.

    In general, you may want to consider a step-down method. I’m not sure cold turkey is the best bet for you, having taken it for so many of your formative years. Each less mg you take is one ounce more of perspective, sociability, and the “real you” that you bring back. So just going down a little bit helps. Even if you cut your dose in half.

    You can read Lilah’s article on nutrition…Iron and Zinc may help with the withdrawals.

    Other than that, talk to your doctor about this. It may be dangerous to just go cold-turkey after having taken them your whole life. You want to do this in a way that your system can handle without too much shock and damage to your grades. It’s not like you’re in college and can just take a semester off.

    Whatever you do, please come back and post updates! I’d really like to see your progress, and I’m sure anybody else who’s in a similar situation and is reading this site would like to see it too. 🙂

    Good luck! It’s a long battle, but it can be very, very worth it.

  80. Mike says:

    @The Original Chris

    Thanks for stopping by! You and the other Chris have been so good to this site. Chris’s FTW.

  81. Lauren says:

    Mike – THANK YOU FOR CREATING THIS WEBSITE! I cannot tell you how helpful it is! I have been searching all over the place, seen some very educated doctors, etc. and no one has been able to provide me any real information about when I will feel better. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE let me know if you have any thoughts on my situation.

    I am 28 years old. I was on Adderall for six years at the maximum dosage of 65-70 mg/day. I am 135 days off Adderall and am still fatigued. I have gained weight.

    WHEN did you finally feel “normal” again? Did you gain much weight? When were you able to exercise again? May I ask how much you were taking?

    Any advice to get better faster?

    THANK YOU!

  82. Mike says:

    Hi Lauren!

    Fatigue is normal after 135 days if you haven’t done anything about it besides waiting for it to go away. Annoyingly, the best way to kill fatigue is usually to force yourself to stay active (even though it’s the last thing you feel like doing when you’re fatigued). After a while, you start to actually being more active.

    Depression-related fatigue may also be an issue (nothing saps your energy like a good dose of feeling worthless), so the other half of the battle is addressing that as well.

    You can start exercising right away…and you should! Exercising is the best part of quitting Adderall! A good running habit well melt your extra weight off in no time.

    On feeling normal again: Chemically, you’re “normal” in 2 weeks to 1 month. That’s how it takes your brain to chemically recover from most drug dependencies (according to my well-respected psychology professor). But beyond that you really, really have to change your expectations for feeling normal. How long did it take for me to feel passionate and energized about my off-purpose day job again? Never. I still struggle through ever day. But that makes sense because I’m not supposed to be here (still working on that). How long did it take me to be able to focus for several hours with passion and energy like I had on Adderall? As soon as I found something I really loved to work on — something that really felt meaningful (e.g., this blog and my other website/writing projects), which happened for the first time about 6 months after quitting.

    I was already into a good exercise habit (and doubled it right after I quit just to have something to occupy myself with), so I didn’t gain much fat…but my muscle mass shot way up.

    I was taking 20-45mg every weekday for 7 years (prescribed 45mg).

    As for advice on getting better: Yes, I definitely have some: change your life, your environment, and your job as quickly and as violently as you can to something that you love. And spend every moment you can working towards that new vision for your life. For every effort you expend towards that goal — whether the effort succeeds or not — the faster you will recover, the more “normal” you will feel, and the happier you’re going to be all around.

    Stagnating and waiting for change will slow your recovery horribly….you have to make it all happen.

    There’s a quote I love from Fredrick Douglas: “I prayed for twenty years but received no answer until I prayed with my legs.” You have to constantly pray with your legs.

    Hope that helps. Good luck! 🙂

  83. Lauren says:

    Mike,

    Thank you for your fast response. Trust me, I am sick of feeling like a fat pig. I want to lose the weight I’ve gained and I want to carry on with my life. I go on a 20 minute walk and I am fatigued the entire time. It baffles me that I am still this fatigued I cannot even go on a simple walk. My body feels like dead weight. It’s especially getting bad to walk outside since the heat is coming. It totally wipes me out.

    Do you think I may have something like adrenal fatigue from the Adderall usage? I’ve been meaning to go to the doctor to get tested but I have to be there at 8:00 a.m. and I haven’t yet talked myself into doing it.

    I literally took the Adderall every single day for six years which I think was really bad and is another reason why it’s taking me longer.

    Any thoughts? Thanks, again.

  84. Zachary says:

    To be honest, I have never been so genuine touched by a group of individuals who suffer from the same addiction that I do. I have never posted a thread to any blog or whatever on the web, but I just had to when I read this. Thank you. This message is filled with more truth than any of us could have ever realized. Everything that was said about adderall, (the superman effect) helped me make sense of how this drug was truly affecting me.

    I can admit to this group of individuals a personal characteristic that was damaged so severely that I lost touch with many people close to me who I loved very much. I have been on adderall for about two years and I am 21 years old now. The “old me” was always very clear and concise when it came to communicating with people. Now… I talk to much and I have been told that I bore people. And that’s coming from my parents, who are more honest and care about me more than anyone. I find it difficult to say what I am thinking because my mind is moving faster than I am talking so it takes a while for me to catch up, and I end up just ranting and losing the interest of those around me.

    If anyone else feels like this horrible drug has affected them in the same way, I would sincerely like to get their feedback on it, because I don’t know anyone who can relate to my situation.

    Adderall is a drug of deception. It will alter your mind to give you feelings of invincibility. Many times you feel so incredible, the negative that comes along with the addiction is overlooked.

    It is not until recently when one of my best friends opened up to me and told me I should stop taking adderall. I immediately disregarded his concern and reassured him that I was fine and everything was going great. Only in the same week my other close friend said she was noticing I was just not myself and she suggested stopping adderall. A light bulb went off after talking to her for literally 6 hours on the phone. I barely slept!…but it was ok…I had my adderall when I had to start my day! lol I told my parents what my friends said and they told me how I have changed. It still isn’t clear to me how I am different to be honest. I am not sure what to compare to at this point cause I am in so deep.

    I am very proud to say that I am 2 months clean of cigarettes! Wish I could say the same thing about pot but I continue to struggle.

    I tend to turn away from these issues when I realize that I don’t care about anything anymore. I am pretty much dropping out of Towson and I give up very easily if I lose interest in what I am doing, whether its exercising, getting up early/going to bed early, or whatever I do in the given week to improve my life.

    I lack consistency. The sad truth is, at the end of each day, I sit around avoiding the problems of the day, and never learn from any of my mistakes…I only view them as failures. And when I think I failed, I give up on whatever method of improvement I was using that week to get better. It is an endless cycle and I have no emotion as a result. The medication blocks the true emotion that I would have felt as my former self so I never feel the pain when I hurt somebody, or when I disappoint my parents once again. That realization is the closest I will come at this point to real emotion.

    This message really gave me some insight and all the people who posted a response, I thank god that there is hope to find freedom from adderall.

    I know I wrote a hell of a lot, but I had to get everything off my chest…you all know how that is when your mind is overloaded with things that need to come out.

    ***To anyone that took the time to read this – Thank you

    ***I would appreciate any feedback that might help me on my journey to find who I truly am at my best.

    God bless

  85. Mike says:

    @ Lauren,

    Hmm… I dunno. Maybe try Omega 3 supplements. I’ve read that they’ve had positive affects on meth addicts, who sometimes face permanent depression after quitting. If it works for meth heads you’d think it might work for ex-Adderallics. The adrenal fatigue is an interesting theory, but I’m not qualified enough to speak on it (I’ve heard of it, but don’t know much about it).

    Definitely go the doctor and find out. And then come back here and report on what he advised!

    I guess my only question would be: Does it feel like it’s getting better at all, even slightly?

    The 8am appointment problem was a total mental thing for me. It took me 3 weeks of early morning appointments to realize that I was just as groggy and miserable no matter when I woke up…the time on the clock was irrelevant. Now I don’t mind the early appointments so much, especially if they’re close to home. I just had to get through a bunch of them to break the stigma. :-p

  86. Mike says:

    @Zachary,

    Thanks for your comment. And I’m honored to be your first commented-on blog!

    Look, I think every single thing you said — the rambling, the rationalizing further use despite advice from friends, the numbness to emotion, the evasion of underlying problems…all of that is dead-on. I think Everybody on this site can probably relate to at least one if not all of those things (personally, I can relate to all of them). You are definitely not alone in that any longer.

    Quitting Adderall is kind of like suddenly feeling pain again after years of being numb to it….and having to deal with all the injuries you ignored when you couldn’t feel the pain from them. That’s the crappy part. The good part is that in the end you are finally fixing yourself.

    Congrats on the cigarettes! FWIW, I thought cigarettes were in some ways harder to quit than Adderall. If you’re going to quit Adderall though, you’re going to need to watch your pot intake. If you have to take up smoking cigarettes again, it would be better than laying on pot as your off-Adderall crutch.

    But still. One at time. Take each addiction one at a time. You’ll get through it.

    Good news is that you’ve *only* cost yourself 2 years and you’re still young. Your brain and your life has time left to recover. You’ve still got some prime years left to be happy and Adderall-free.

    Those friends and family who hate how Adderall has changed you — they’ll be a godsend when you start quitting.

  87. Elizabeth says:

    Guess what Mike, I am on a smaller dose again! So I used to take 20-40mg a day. I went straight to 10mg on April 21st. I reduced it again on Sunday to 5mg. So tired- but more alive!! I am starving but gum helps. I need to begin working out while we wait to get a weight set because my skinny pants are getting a little tighter. 🙁 But the good news is, I am feeling better over all so I just need to eat better and become more motivated to exercise.

    Lauren and Zachary’s posts really rang true to me, as most of them do.Best of luck to you both and anyone else embarking on this journey.

    Lauren- Try a cardio class. I don’t have the funds to do so myself, but if I did I would. For sure. Its kinda hard not to keep trying with all those people around you. I took them all through college and the first class sucked. I stood in the back and felt like the fattest chick in the room. I was slow and sometimes you could even see one of my arms or legs from the front of the room b/c I was sooo off. But I kept going and eventually was right in front, in step with everyone else. I noticed that everyone new was about as slow as I was. As I type this, I am thinking I may sacrifice my bi-weekly Lattes or something because classes worked for me before and I think I need them again.. 🙂

    Zachary- I know exactly what you mean. The only way I can put it into words is that Adderall makes me socially unacceptable at times. I also ramble to people, all of it. I have noticed that this is getting better as I reduce it. Much better. Do you find yourself regretting things you said on Adderall or being embarrassed later as if it were booze or something? For me, this issue seems to disappearing more and more as I reduce the Adderall. More than I even thought it would at this point. One thing that I keep reminding myself is that I can’t cave in and try to go back to a higher dose. I read that on here and it has helped. Something about doing all of this on my own terms has really helped me, as well. My doctor hasn’t called me about refilling my script for some reason- but I have been cutting my dose in half each time I am ready and I am hoping that I won’t need a new script but that is kind of scary, too- I still feel more secure when it is available.

    And Mike, thanks for the “Adderalic” trademark. Makes me feel very special that something I said can resonate like that. I need to get back to writing. Fitness will be goal #1 for now, hopefully once I am done with this medicine, writing will come next.. It is really hard to accomplish personal goals as a working Mother of 2 young kids- but Adderall did nothing but hold me back even more..

  88. Louisa says:

    You all can’t possibly carry the shame I carry. I’ve been taking stimulant fairly regular for 6 months and I really want to stop. Here is the pattern I keep falling into. I seem to go on two day stimulant/adderall binges then I get disgusted with myself and I stop. Everytime I stop I say it is for good and I really mean it, then three days later, I am low on energy, or I have a big task to do. I am a parent of many children half are under 6. I am also older person. So on the first day, I promise myself I am only going to take 1 then an hour later I don’t feel any effect so I take another. Maybe an hour or two later I feel somewhat effected by it. Not high, I never get high. Not buzzed either. I don’t feel like superman I just get this tight feeling in the back of my throat, and I lose my appetite. It gives the get up and go I need to complete my chores. So for two days each time I feel the effects start to wear off, I take more and more until after two days I’ve taken upwards of 300+ mg. Again, I never get high so I don’t get that with some people. After two days I feel so ashamed that I swear it off for good. I’ve lost over 30 pounds since doing this pattern. I use to be somewhat obese, now I am a semi normal size. That feels wonderful. I was able to replace my wardrobe from a consignment store very cheaply and went from a size 20W to 12. This is part of my angst in quitting. I’m so afraid I’ll get fat again and that is probably 90% of why I am taking it. It helps me go a whole day eating next to nothing. I have a hearty appetite especially for sweets otherwise. So, I am sure I’ve built up a pretty good tolerance to it because I take such large doses. NO ONE knows about this, just me and you and God. I am a devout Christian and I know this is seriously interfering with my relationship with God because I feel so guilty. I keep asking Him to help me and He does and when once little temptation comes my way, I believe the lie of the devil that I can control it. I never had. It hasn’t been that long nor do I do it everyday. Probably twice a week. So here is the really shameful part, because my doc only gives me the normal amount and I quickly run out, I take my children’s surplus. One of my children doesn’t really like taking it but I call for refills and give her a few to justify getting a refill and after she complains I finish her prescription. My son takes less than prescribed so I take his extra leaving him exactly the amount he needs for the school week. So now I’m sure that you all aren’t as low life as I am. My children won’t be taking in the summer breaks which starts in three weeks so my supply will be cut off. I sure hope this gets me to quit. On the binge days I seem to have NO willpower or self control but on the days off I am fine. I don’t crave it. I don’t crave it until I take that first dose and then off I go taking a dose every couple of hours. Please don’t write to tell me how despicable I am, I know already. Please don’t write to tell me how bad that much to take is. I know that. I am careful only taking anywhere from 5mgs to 20 mgs per dose and I space them out but I am still being foolish and taking too great of a risk to my health and well being and of getting caught and labeled a substance abuser, liar, cheat and fraud. Which is what I am. I know at the Judgement seat of CHrist, I will have to answer for this and that bothers me. I’m so disgusted and ashamed of myself. So now I hope you all feel better about yourselves cuz I’m sure there is no one who is as dumb, stupid, foolish, and fraud like me. I wish I would die somedays but I have children I have to care for and I don’t want to get caught and leave a shameful legacy for my family and embarrass them so. People comment about my weight and It try to change the subject because I am defrauding people by not telling them I’ve had artificial help.

  89. Mike says:

    @Elizabeth

    Congrats on cutting the dose! Yeah, definitely focus on the fitness first, then the writing. Your creative juices are naturally high directly after exercise. Actually, I forget whether I read that somewhere…but I definitely experience it on a regular basis. Sometimes I even schedule writing times right after a long run…just because I know I’ll be in the mood to work on stuff when I get done.

    And no problem on the Adderallic trade mark. I actually created a little shortcut for it on my PC using Texter (a free timesaver app that you can pry from my cold, dead, geeky hands), so I can just type the word and it expands with the trademark link added automatically. :-p

  90. josh says:

    brother. preach it. this is so great. ive been looking for something like this for SO long.
    adderall free life, here i come

  91. Mike says:

    @Louisa,

    You are not a low-life. A low-life take drugs to escape, to avoid her duties, to be forcefully lazy. An Adderall addict takes the drugs because she wants to be productive, because she cares about her duties, and because she has good intentions at heart.

    I don’t think I’ve ever heard from a person on this blog who I thought was a bad person. In my view, Adderall is the one drug on earth that specifically attracts good people. In a way, the fact that Adderall is your drug of choice (vs. pot, heroin, alcohol) tilts you towards the “probably a good person” end of the scale in my book.

    So eas up on yourself…like, a lot.

    That said…An addiction is something you wish you could stop doing but can’t. And the reason can’t resist taking a dose is because you don’t resist taking a dose. I know that sounds circular. What I’m saying is that every time you give in, you build your “giving in” muscle, and are more likely to do it the next time. It takes successive acts of shear willpower to resist several times, until not resiting successfully becomes the natural feeling (vs. giving in feeling natural). This is what Boundary Elasticity and Boundary Decay are all about.

    Skimming off your kids’ supply doesn’t make you a terrible person. It makes you a person with a problem. A low/bad person would be selling her kids toys so she could by heroin or something and just waste away on the couch while her kids were left unattended. Your not doing that. Your skimming pills that they won’t miss terribly and you’re doing it in a misguided attempt to be better.

    I am not in charge of after-life judgment, but in my view you will be less likely to be judged harshly for things that you overcame during your life. A big part of life is having a problem, struggling with it, and then overcoming it and becoming a better person. It’s the people who fail to overcome their problems…who stew in them until they die…those people are more worthy of judgement, IMHO.

    You can do this. It will take willpower. But you can do it. Start by gradually taking your dose down. You have to first break that obsessive-compulsive need to keep re-dosing. One dose should last you 4-6 hours. Talk to your doctor about it first, but it’s better for your sanity if you take one larger dose and then let it ride for 6 hours than to constantly pop little doses. Maybe start with that.

    Look, you have a doctor that you go to for this. He’s bound by law to keep everything you say private. Go talk to him about this. Tell him you’re addicted and you want to come off. Ask him to help you.

    As for the weight: That will absolutely come back when you quit. If you’re smart about preparing for your quitting process, you can prevent/offset the weight gain and even lose more weight. Whenever you want a pill, walk around the block….that kind of thing.

    A good exercise routine is crucial to successfully quitting Adderall. If you’re obese, then you can start by just walking back and forth in a pool. I’ve seen a big guy lose a ton of weight just by doing slow, body-friendly exercises like that.

    Good luck. Hang in there. You’ll make it through this. And be better for it.

  92. Mike says:

    @josh – Will do! And good luck. 🙂

  93. Lauren says:

    Mike:

    I take a lot of supplements since getting off Adderall. I have seen on your website and many others that L-Tyrosine is highly recommended. I have considered taking it.

    However, I am apprehensive because I feel like I do not want to artificially stimulate my neurotransmitters or whatever else is up there in my head. I feel that in the long run, it would be best if my brain learned to work on its own.

    What are your thoughts on this, if any?

    Thanks, again!

  94. Mike says:

    @Lauren,

    I’m of the same school if thought. I don’t like having to depend on suppliments. But i think it’s fine if you just take them for a bit to ease the withdrawal…then ween yourself off of the sups as well.

    But ultimately, suppliments have much more mild effects. So if you end up taking forever it’s most likely not going to alter you enough to be bad.

    Expensive though.

    -Mike

  95. jordan says:

    Mike,

    for the first time in a long while, i feel hope. i want to thank you for that. i have unequivocally reached an all time low in my love affair with adderall. last summer i flew 3,000 miles away to a rehab because i thought i hit rock bottom; apparently rock bottom keeps getting worse with every failed attempt at sobriety. quickly after returning from rehab i realized i couldn’t function in the real world. how was i supposed to be a full time college student and work? i had zero motivation. i craved the high that adderall gave me. i wanted the weight loss that came with it too.

    i take the little pills to not feel, yet the comedown is always worse than the time before. every 3 day binge turns into me feeling so empty and broken. i HOPE my desire to stop is strong enough this time. after reading through these posts, i have a determination like never before to get my life back together and beat this. so thank you again mike, you’re an angel.

  96. Bradley says:

    My name’s Brad.
    I’m ashamed to say that I was medicated on this drug for the entirety of “the best four years of my life” in college. I’ve been out of school for 1 year, and it’s been one year and three weeks since I swallowed that last pill, for my last final in college. I graduated with a degree in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology.

    Adderall destroyed my work ethic. I have no confidence in my ability to complete projects well without it. Sure, I was a genius when I was on it, but that wasn’t me. I’m now coming to terms with the fact that my greatest accomplishments were reached not through my own efforts, but by means of an amphetamine: I never learned how to work HARD in college.

    This year has had some high highs, and some incredibly low lows. I decided to take some time off from school and figure out who I am and what I’m interested in and can do naturally. Thank goodness I had the sense to do that. I’m currently working a menial job in a support laboratory — running pretty repetitive assays. I’m terrified that this mind-meltingly mundane job is the only job I’ll be able to hold, given my distractability and lethargy off of adderall.

    Unfortunately, this job (the only job I could find in this economy) is about 250 miles away from my family and most of my college friends, so I don’t have a lot of support and I’m feeling really isolated and sad. I cope with a lot of coffee (it’s my middleground between nothing and adderall).

    I plan on abstaining from adderall for at least two years. If I can’t get anything straightened out by then, I’ll probably do one of two things: 1.) go back on it and go back to grad school, or 2.) run away and do something non-academic until things become clearer…hike the AT, travel to South America, drive out West and see what kind of work there is out there. I just really need the reassurance that quitting was the right thing.

    There’s my story. Hope someone else reads it and knows that they’re not the only one feeling like this.

    Brad.

  97. Mike says:

    @Brad

    Thanks for sharing your story.

    my greatest accomplishments were reached not through my own efforts, but by means of an amphetamine

    You’re not done yet. If end up finding something new that you’re really passionate about naturally…any accomplishments in that vein will totally crush whatever you did on Adderall, in terms of how proud you are of what you’ve done.

    Ultimately, you’re not going to be convinced that quitting Adderall was the right thing to do until you find and achieve your happy place, or at least start finding breadcrumbs leading you there.

  98. Ginger says:

    I was diagnosed with ADD in Elementary school. I have been on and off Adderall for about 10 years, luckily only 10mg once a day. It has helped me and hindered me in many ways.

    I have been off Adderall for about two weeks now. The main purpose was so my husband and I could start a family.

    I am having a hard time with my energy levels. I am tired and starting to feel depressed. Any advice would be appreciated!

    Thank you 🙂

  99. Pat says:

    I have been taking Adderall for about 4 years now. I was always a below average student, and generally lazy. I really started to feel like a failure, I was ten pounds overweight (big deal) but my family always reminded me that I only did the bare minimum in everything I tried and my weight was embarassing.

    I hated University, couldn’t get interested in it and thought that I was slow or stupid. So I decided to take some IQ tests and WOW! I scored a 147.

    A year or two went by, and it was my senior year of college, my GPA was sitting at about a 2.0 and I was two semesters away from a a complete failure. The school doctor said that I should consider Adderall as a way to improve my studies and motivation. That semester I came out with a 3.96 GPA and lost 10 pounds! I was fit, happy, motivated and finally felt like I found the key to unlock the potential I had wasted for so long.

    Fast forward 4 years, the Adderall completely stole my creativity and my drive, I gained 40 pounds, got high blood sugar (thanks Adderall), I completely isolated myself, and took my family’s career advice and am sitting in the most grinding job that makes me want to puke everytime I think about it.

    I didn’t pursue anything of interest to me, now I have a mortgage that I need to support and no other outlook. Yesterday I took a bunch of Adderall, and as usual didn’t complete even the slightest amount of work but couldn’t sleep either (as usual).

    So I quit today, and I am going cold turkey. I don’t care if it makes me feel like shit because I feel worse when I am on it. I never get any positive effects or euphoria from it anymore, so I am done.

    I can’t wait to have my old self back, that was a good and sincere person regardless of what my family said.

  100. Pat says:

    I am brand new to this whole Adderoll experiance. I took one casually for the first tome last night because I had an incredible amount of work to finish and I was extremly tired. I am still flying and attempting to come down now. I am not a frequent drug user and would have never swallowed that pill if I had any idea the strength and wild side effects. I hate the way that I am feeling now, however, at the same time I am having trouble not continung this high. I have no doubt that once I can reign in this experiance I will never touch the stuff again, but it gave me a glimpse into the powerlessness that walks with addiction. I am lucid and clear minded (racing, loosley connected thoughts running through my brain while simotaniously completley exhausted and starving. It is a bizzar cycle to watch yourself continue.

    I can offer you my support and implore you to keep remembering that everything is transient, the feelings that you will experiance while restoring yourself to a natural balance WILL end. Time move at the same speed no matter how slow it seems to to pass in the momonent. You can push through this and you will.
    Best of luck and Congratulations on the beginning of your new, and present existance!

  101. Colton says:

    Hi,
    I want to start off by saying thank you Mike for this website. It has been the first website I visit each morning to get my “mind correct.” I am in my mid 20’s a college graduate and a full time employee.
    It’s tough to say, but I think I have been taking adderall for about 4 years now; however, for the past 2 1/2 years it has been a daily occurrence. That being said, lately I have been noticing such drastic changes in my personality and mood that I knew I had to make a change. Its also tough to gauge just how much adderall I was taking, some days it was 40mg and some days it was 70-80 mg’s per day. It took time for me to notice that my interest level for things I had once loved have diminished and I’m not sure exactly who I am anymore. My life has gone in circles, and haven’t been living a life of honesty and purity since all my emotions and actions were masked by the pill. That being said, thank God for this site. Truly, I read the stories, withdrawl effects etc…and it helps me to notice what to expect as I quit taking this drug and how to get over the hill as far as addiction is concerned.
    Here is my question and current situation, please please please share your thoughts ideas and/or comments if they will be beneficial.
    since I found this site, and have done my research on best methods to quit adderall, I have decided to ween myself off the drug. I started by reducing my intake down to 40 mg’s for 3 days, then down to 30, and then down to 20 mg’s….by Monday I will be on 10.
    I read on the website here, that you are not an advocate of weaning yourself off the drug and that it should start immediately. Currently, I’ve been so much happier, nicer and kinder and very VERY proud of myself for reducing my intake and holding back the urge to take more. I feel strongly that this approach is working incredibly well for me.
    Any thoughts, ideas etc… on this method? Also, about a month ago, I stopped taking the drug all together for a full week. It was somewhat unpleasant; however, it was still doable. Why is it that I was able to whether that week long storm without wanting to completely give up? Would greatly appreciate hearing anybody’s feedback on the weaning yourself off the medicine approach to this drug. I feel very proud of myself and hope that this approach will serve to be beneficial to me….

  102. Mike says:

    Hi Colton!

    Thanks for your comment. Glad you like the site!

    You have every reason to be proud of how far you’ve stepped-down. The only objection I’ve ever had with the step-down method is that a lot of people fail at it (because the end up stepping back up). If you can pull off the step-down method, then it’s definitely the better, more healthy way to go. Happy to hear that you’re staying strong and it’s working for you!

    Also, about a month ago, I stopped taking the drug all together for a full week. It was somewhat unpleasant; however, it was still doable. Why is it that I was able to whether that week long storm without wanting to completely give up?

    Maybe because some part of you knew that you were going to take it again? It’s easy to stop, but hard to quit.

  103. Sam says:

    I can’t find a response to some of Dave’s questions posted on Oct. 28th, 2008. I have been using adderall as a tool to perform better at my job for 4 years. I take 30 mgs a day. I have never experienced any adverse side effects. If I don’t have access to adderall when I’m NOT at work, I don’t care, and it doesn’t affect my mood. I recently came back from a week long trip during which I took absolutely NO adderall. I didn’t even think about it while I was gone. I didn’t feel any different, and I asked my wife if she thought I seemed down, depressed or irritable during the trip. She said that I did not.

    That said, its OBVIOUS how much adderall helps my performance at work, and my performance at work is tied directly to my chances at providing the best possible life for my son and my wife. I am an engineer. My job requires me to spend long periods of time focused on projects while being flexible enough to drop everything to troubleshoot an issue and return to my original task in one motion. In order to accomplish everthing that’s expected of me, I have to do this SEAMLESSLY! Adderall allows me to do that, and it is responsible for boosting me from average to extremely high performance. If I was to stop taking adderall today and screwed up and got fired, it would NEVER have been worth the effort. Convince me otherwise. I don’t WANT to be dependant on a substance for work performance, but to me the means ABSOLUTELY justifies the end if it allows me to provide a better life for my family and a better career for myself.

  104. Mike says:

    Hi Sam,

    Full response to Dave here…
    http://quittingadderall.com/a-readers-questions-what-if-you-have-a-lot-of-dependants/

    Note that I was a little more militant back then, and I think Dave was in a different situation than you (he had alcohol abuse, hated his job, etc).

    Honestly, if your only objection to taking Adderall is that you don’t want to be dependent on a drug, then you might as well just stay on it. If it makes you happy, and engineering is really what you want to do with your life, then who cares. You need a more compelling reason than “I have a mild intellectual/moral objection to pharmaceuticals” to justify tearing your whole life down to quit. In fact, I don’t even have an option for that on my “why do you want to quit” poll.

    This site is for people who want their life to change, who feel like Adderall is keeping them from something they need to do…from someone they need to be.

    You don’t sound like that to me. You sound like Adderall is helping you and you’re satisfied with your life. In which case, why bother second-guessing it?

    The people who truely benefit from quitting Adderall begin by having a vision of their life — and themselves — as much better (and different) without Adderall. If you cannot generate and believe in such a vision, then quitting will most likely bring you nothing but problems.

    Look, I’m an engineer too (well, a programmer, but I get referred to as an engineer all the time at work). BELIEVE ME, I know what Adderall does for you as an engineer. If my goal in life was to be the world’s best (and richest, of course) programmer, I would strongly consider going back on the meds. But here’s the paradox: personally, I think that if that’s where my heart was, I wouldn’t need the meds. I only needed them because I have little natural passion for the work.

    And that was my situation: I was a great(ish) programmer on Adderall. Lots of opportunity in front of me. A whole lucrative career. And deep down I didn’t want any of it….I knew I was meant to do something else, to be someone else. That is what you’ll find in common amongst people on this site. Look at those poll results: 42% want to quit Adderall “to get back a piece of themselves that feels lost”.

    If you don’t feel like a piece of yourself is lost, and your health isn’t getting bad, and your sticking to your dose, and your happy with your life…then you have (IMHO) no reason to quit. And you certainly won’t have the stomach to quit without a powerful reason to endure the hardship it brings.

    Anyhow, thanks for your comment! I appreciate what you’re saying, and if you still want to quit, I’ll try to give you some realistic pointers.

    Also, one final point: You’re not usually going to have extreme withdrawal symptoms on vacation. Think about what you’re saying “I went to the beach with my family for a week of fun in the sun — and I wasn’t depressed at all!”. I know that seems counterintuitive to the whole “it’s a chemical thing, vacation or no” idea…but I’ve done what you’re talking about a dozen times (taken time off for vacation) and same deal (no withdrawal). The depression sometimes doesn’t set in until you get back in the pressurized environment of work and you can’t relieve the pressure.

  105. Tom says:

    only 10 days on the stuff )July 14, 2010 45mg) and I am losing my mind!!! yet I am terrified to flush my pills. They really do not work for me. My question is am I going to notice that much a differrence (withdraWAL) since it has been such a short time?
    Tom

  106. Mike says:

    Hi Tom,

    You’ll be fine. You may sleep for a couple days and then be lathargic for a week or so…then you’ll be good to go, physically. Mentally, it make take you a month to get totally used to working without it.

  107. Sam says:

    Hi Mike,

    Thanks for the quick response. I did choose to go ahead with quitting. Not because I feel like I’ve lost a part of myself, but because I know that, eventually, unless I start increasing my dose, I won’t be performing any better with it than I do without it now. Prolonging my use of it and continuing to make excuses for using it is only going to make the fall that much worse and harder to cope with when it comes.

    I took my last pill just before my last post. At this point, I think I would like some of those “realistic pointers” you mentioned. Getting enough motivation to respond to an email (or write this post) has been difficult. So far, I’ve started on an “energy” multivitamin regimin from GNC, and that (contrary to my expectations) has had a real positive effect. I’d really appreciate any other advice you have.

    Finally, thanks a lot for this service. At times, I still feel like I made the wrong decision. But I know that I CAN perform without it, and long term, it’s going to work out for the best for me AND my family if I’m able to stop taking it for good.

    –Sam

  108. Mike says:

    @Sam

    If you haven’t already, be sure to read Lilah’s epic post on post-Adderall nutrition.

    Besides that, you may not want to go cold turkey. You sound pretty level-headed and calmly tactical about this. That’s the perfect mindset for the step-down method. My post on weaning yourself off one 2-week step down at a time is based on the notion that your brain chemistry takes about 2-4 weeks to adjust to the hit of not having as much/any Adderall. But I’ve heard from people who’ve stepped-down much more quickly (like all in 2 weeks) and were still successful. Something to keep in mind if it starts to hurt you too badly at work.

    Anyhow, good luck!

    P.S. Which multivitamin from GNC? 🙂

  109. Sam says:

    Mike,

    I don’t think it matters that much which vitamin. I think its more just taking a vitamin at all that’s improved my energy. For what it’s worth, it’s just the standard GNC “Energy” formula.

    Too late for the step down though, and I’d tried and failed with that method several times already anyway.

    Things still pretty much suck, but I’m getting by at work either way. I’ll keep you posted as things progress.

    Thanks for listening.

    Sam

  110. Foranea says:

    Hello,

    I came to know aderall when I went to the USA for an internship and the person sitting in front of me had the strangest behaviour: she would come to work late every day and switch between intense periods of focusing to being completely “spaced out”, she wouldn’t eat but drink coffee the whole day, she would talk so fast I could barely follow. It was like she was functioning at a different speed, and it was clear that she felt the world couldn’t keep up with what was happening on her mind. When she explained that she was taking “addy” because she suffered from ADD, I had to ask for an explanation, because it was the first time I heard the term. And not because I come from the moon, but just because this is only common knowledge in the USA -which is, btw, the only country that allows pharmaceuticals to advertise on tv-.

    But after hearing the explanation I was completely puzzled. How can this smart, beautiful, sensitive person think there’s something wrong with her? I could tell she was a bit “intense” but then again that made her more interesting. I could tell she didn’t like routine, but who does? I could tell there wasn’t really a condition or sickness, she was just different. But different doesn’t mean wrong and in the end we’re are all different. I’m sure there’s some name for the aspects of my personality which do not fit in the perfect image medicine has created, and I could call myself “anxious” or “depressive” or “ADHD” from tomorrow onwards. And think there’s something wrong with me. And punish myself for that.

    What a strange world this Americans have created for themlselves, I thought. Make their people think they’re sick and then stuff them with pills that alter their behaviour and make them addicted.

    I thought the part of her that was gone with the “addy” was hre most interesting, valuable part. And that’s is really a loss, that is something that should never happen. Because she was losing her true self, that uniqueness that enchanted me when I was allowed to see in between the “addy” fits.
    I am so glad she realized what a great mistake she was making by giving her life away to such stupid drug. I am so glad to see her back, expressing her unique ways, truly sharing with those around her, allowing herself to love and be loved. True, the road to recovering wasn’t particularly rosy but I was sure the strenght to beat the darkness was in her heart.

    I am not an expert on this topic because I haven’t even tried aderall but from this experience all I can say is that you should look at the bigger picture, don’t let yourself be fooled by doctors who are unable to see your true self, by a society that has forgotten what we human beings are all about.

  111. ERIN says:

    Mike,

    I’m quit again, this time for good. I just wanted to let you know I’m back and wanted to say thank you again for creating this website.

    Sincerely,

    Your first reader/comment person – Erin

  112. Mike says:

    @Foranea – Great second-hand account of Adderall usage! I think that’s officially our first “observational account” of a sober person witnessing a friend on Adderall and describing it (really well, I might add). Great stuff. Thanks for posting it.

    @Erin! – Welcome back! Congrats on finally quitting. I can’t tell you how much I cherished that first comment (well, all of everybody’s comments, but yours was the first). Good to hear from you.

  113. Andrea says:

    Wow, I have been looking for this website for about a year now. I am 26 and have been on adderall since I was 15, I am weaning myself off adderall b/c 1. My husband I and want to have a baby 2. I do not want to be addicted to this anymore. I started the weaning process in March, this year, but I had no idea how to go about doing it-I did not talk to my doctor about doing it, b/c I was afraid he would do it too fast, and leave me miserable. He knows now, and is fine with the way I am doing it (just didn’t tell me where to go from here). I am prescribed 20 milligrams in the morning, and 10 at noon, I am down to 10 milligrams in the morning. Every other website I have found just tells me horror stories about quitting, and that I will be a mess, forever, after I am done. This website is so encouraging and I have been stuck at 10 milligrams b/c I didn’t know where to go from there. I am very scared that I won’t ever “wake up” without it once I am completely off of it (that’s what a lot of the other things I have read said), but I know its something I can do. From what I understand, I should have about 30 days of the not being able to “wake up” after I am totally off, but 30 days I can handle! I plan on doing 7.5 for 2 weeks, then 5 for 2 weeks, then 2.5 for 2 weeks. I quit smoking about a year ago, and gained 15 pounds, I did weight watchers and am back down to my size 4, so I don’t think I will have any issues with weight gain if I follow the weight watchers program. You are doing a wondering thing here, and I am so thankful that I happened upon this site! Thank you SOO much!

  114. Sarah says:

    Hi,
    I have been searching for information on quiting adderall for several weeks now. I have been prescribed Adderall for over 2 years because of my ADHD. Right now I ma on 30mg/day. It helps me a lot but I know I also liked the feeling of euphoria especially when I took more than prescribed. My husband and I are trying to get pregnant now and for some reason we are having trouble conceiving. I believe that Adderall is just messing up my menstrual cycles and ovulation.We really want to have a child therefore I decided to quit Adderall. I was doing fine for a week the longest but then I had to take it again becuase my daily responsiblities were getting out of control. Aslo, I felt extremaly tired (flu like symptoms) and kind of depressed. I don’t know how to function without it. To be honest I am afraid my life will fall apart without it. I even told my husband I stopped taking it although I took it behind his back.
    Every day I say to my self that I have to quit it for my own good and I am determined to try but I fail. I really don’t know what else to do in order to break my adderall dependency and that terrifies me.

    Thanks for listening,

    sarah

  115. Andrea says:

    Hi Sarah,
    I posted right before you, and I wanted to stay that I am in the same boat, so I totally know what you are going through. First of all, please please please try and get off of adderall before you start trying to get pregnant. Adderall is an amphetamine, and VERY bad for the fetus. We both know it helps us, but to a baby growing inside of you, it dosent, it is similar to taking meth(amphetamine) and I was cautioned by my psychiatrist that taking adderall in the first trimester is very dangerous to the baby. I mean, think about babies who are born to drug addicts (which is what we are regardless that it is prescribed to us), the baby has withdrawal symptoms and usually low birth weight, and women who do drugs while pregnant are cautioned not to stop b/c the stress on the baby from stopping is not good either, so I would really recommend getting off adderall before you continue to try and get pregnant. I really do know how hard it is b/c I am doing it myself right now so that my husband and I can have a baby. I would recommend doing the weaning process that is described on this website and substitute caffeine (yes, I know that’s also bad while you are pregnant, but its better then adderall, and much easier to stop) while you are doing it, and also use this http://quittingadderall.com/cushion-your-crash-landing-nutritional-needs-after-adderall/ as a guide, and also use some Omaga 3’s, they will help with your ability to concentrate and focus. You could also go to a natural health food store (not a GNC or something similar, go to a place that might be considered a bit “hippy” or “holistic”, it will have better products, and should be natural) and talk to someone there about different supplements to take to help with your energy (that’s the hardest part for me), which also might be the reason you feel tired and have flu like symptoms. I am not sure how to go about getting my email to you, b/c I don’t want the entire board to see it, but if you want it, I would be more the happy to give it to you. I hope this helps!
    Andrea

  116. Mike says:

    @Andrea

    Thanks for the comment! That myth about never being the same/never being able to “wake up” again after quitting is total bullshit. 30 days is about right. It usually takes your body 2 weeks to 1 month to clear out the chemicals. After that it’s *just* a mental game. But even if it takes longer, you will eventually get there. Plus, pregnancy will give you an excuse to be as lazy as you need to be, which will help.

    Also, totally agree with your advice to Sarah about Omega 3’s. That’s the only thing that ever made a difference for me.

  117. Sam says:

    Mike,

    I quit taking adderall on July 20th, shortly after my first post on this website. Outside of work I think I’m back to my old self, able to get things done, not feeling crappy and all that. There’s just one problem: it turns out that I hate 95% of what I do.

    I guess the real reason I was taking adderall is that it lets you enjoy doing a job that you don’t even like. I didn’t even know that until recently. Every time I tried to quit, I would lose interest in my work, and I couldn’t find the motivation to get started on anything. I assumed that was just me adjusting to not having adderall in my system. But I haven’t taken any adderall (literally none) in 5 weeks, and things are still getting worse instead of better, except for those few and far between projects that actually engage my interest naturally (only one since quitting). Normally, there’s nothing on my list of 20 or 30 things to do at work that I actually enjoy doing.

    Adderall is the real reason I’m in this mess: if I hadn’t been taking adderall, I wouldn’t have been able to dupe myself into believing that I liked my job to begin with. But I am in this mess, and it’s going to be a few years until I’m out of it (I am a contract employee and I’ve already talked with my manager). And honestly, adderall seems to me to be the only way to stay sane until I can make a career move. Am I rationalizing or does all this seem reasonable?

    Either way, I have learned a lot in the past 5 weeks, and I am glad that I quit taking adderall. At least now I know that I’m not in the right place with my career, and I can start moving toward positions that I believe will be more rewarding. Any advice for the interim?

    –Sam

  118. Mike says:

    @Sam

    Your comment was really spot-on. That perfectly summarizes how I felt about work when I quit Adderall. As for the interim, I’m not totally sure on that one. I understand the whole “I quit Adderall to re-calibrate my direction, now I’m going back on it so I can get to my new destination faster and with more sanity”.

    The best scenario would be to stay off Adderall and use these years to hone your ability to do unpleasant things without the pills. You’ll find that you will naturally add pleasurable things to your life to help counter-balance your suddenly crappy day job. So at the end of your contract, you’ve got a well-rebuilt willpower, probably in really good shape, and lots of side hobbies that you’re becoming increasingly passionate about.

    Or you can be exactly where you are right now, but free to move.

    The fact that you’re under contract is definitely a factor. And believe me I understand the keeping yourself sane in the mean time argument. My advice: Try everything you can to hack it, and if you can’t then maybe do a very low dose.

  119. Molly says:

    Mike,
    I haven’t had my Rx filled in a few days and even the smallest task of writing an email pot are extraordinarily difficult. I found this website because I have been unable to focus now for the 3rd day in a row without my beloved Adderall (50 mg XR, taken together in the morning). This happens every few months when I don’t coordinate obtaining the script from the doctor and getting to the pharmacy during business hours.

    For the first time I am reading stories about other people who feel the same way I do. You are a very thoughtful, bright (IMHO) and kind person. You give hope and reassurance to lots of people you don’t even know, just because you want them to feel as good as you do now. Thanks for putting together this website.

    My story begins in 2004: About a year after passing the bar examination, I was working at a law firm and terribly depressed. I hated what I was doing and couldn’t focus most of the day. I was doing community theater because acting was always my passion but I was scared to pursue acting professionally because it wasn’t practical and blah blah. Eventually, I landed on the couch of a shrink who was more than willing to prescribe me the wonder drug that would make me able to focus. It’s strange because I had managed to make it through my entire academic career withotu needing any stimulants or extra time…and never got below a B. But here I was, Rx in hand and ready to try whatever it would take to help me not dread the path I had chosen.

    Fast forward a few years on the pills, change firms (so no one knows my former self) and now I really like being a lawyer. But on these off days it’s just killer, and I wonder–like Sam the engineer–what would happen if I went off the meds. I like how great I feel being able to accomplish so much, having all the praise of my bosses and clients (trait #3?…wanting to please others). And it’s considerable…and I feel like superwoman sometimes. It may be attributable to the overconfidence masking the ever-present insecurity (trait #6) of an adderallic(TM).

    But just as I am getting close to making partner, I need to get off these pills because my husband and I want to start a family before it’s too late. I am very fortunate because he is so supportive about all of this nonsense. I already got off my accutane but this is much harder. It’s not about appearance (though I welcomed the associated weight loss) but productivity. I know there are no easy answers but at least I have found a forum where I can actually read stories of others who have been through similar situations.

  120. Mike says:

    Hi Molly!

    As I’ve said a bunch on here, pregnancy is the PERFECT time to quit, because people’s expectations are so low of you.

    Unfortunately, you’re not quite pregnant yet. So you have to deal with a little quitting unpleasantness if you do this now (early). Once you can tell people that you’re pregnant this will go a lot easier on you, in terms of the approval addiction factor.

    I’m happy that you like being a lawyer now, but I can’t help see it as a tragedy that you gave up totally on acting. I mean, yeah you enjoy being a lawyer now…but I can’t shake the feeling that it sounds like your compromise life. Especially since you said “I really like” being a lawyer. “I Really like” is sometimes a far cry from “I love”. This may not be the case with you. I’m totally projecting. I used to say that about being a software developer — “I really like programming”. But I never loved it. And now I’ve found other things that I love (not just really like).

    Being a lawyer may be a great, satisfying day job for you that you really like. But when you get time, make sure to spend a little time every week doing something you love.

    I may be totally wrong here. Sometimes it’s hard to infer somebody’s entire life story/perspective from a single comment. :-p

    Also, when it is it “too late” to start a family? Just curious, because that statement totally added to my anxiety about being single haha.

  121. af says:

    Is it alright to have a plan, a goal?

    I see that our company will have a downtime sometime in the next few months..a time for me to STOP and have a week or two to bear the immediate downtime and work to begin some workout regimin.
    Hopefully to return to work with all of the Challenges and yet at least a good portion of that immediate Drop-Off handled or at least experienced. Again, at this time in my life I have little support and the Job is my primary point of reference to everything I am.

    Ultimately I need more points of reference, but to lose the job would send me really far back. I try to manage without it at work; it seems it would take some time away from it before I could handle that responsibility…

  122. LE says:

    While not on Aderral, I am on Vyvanse and am experiencing so many of the same things as everyone else has posted. I have been on the medication for a little over a year and a half and, while I have known for a while that I really need to get off as soon as possible, for at least the last year, my fears have scared me too me from doing so. However, I can’t live like this any more and have no choice but start the process of getting off from this.
    One thing I have a question about is how the withdrawal was for those who were weaned off the medication? To be perfectly honest, I know if I try to quit cold turkey, the symptoms will make me crazy enough to go back to taking it again. Thank you Mike, seriously, I have spent the last three hrs going through posts and feedback on this website and having this resource is really what is going to help me be successful.

  123. Mike says:

    @af – Sure you can have a planned quitting time! If you stick to it, a planned quitting time can be a really smart way to go. Just don’t let yourself put it off once you get there.

    As for your job being a reference point for everything you are: you may need to prepare for that to change drastically when you quit. It might not in your case, but for me it did. Actually, for me, one of the reasons I quit is because I wanted to be identified by more than just the job that I didn’t really feel meant for.

    @LE – Weaning off lets you manage your own withdrawal. If you step-down slowly enough, you should be able to mitigate the brunt of the withdraw. Common wisdom is that it takes 2 weeks to 1 month for your brain chemistry to rebound to less drugs in your system, so use that to guide your steps. And make sure to develop your habits and passions on the side as you go, to compensate for your steps down.

    As your weaning-off brings you down, add things to your life that boost you up…like an emotional safety net.

  124. Poptart says:

    I noticed you wrote that this could jeopardize your relationship, my concern is what quitting will put my 3 small children through. I am a single parent with no support from others. I’m afraid of how this will affect my daily tasks of caring for the kids. They are not old enough to understand the process. How can I do this and still care for my children? I know I crash hard and that scares me to do so with them in my care. Please help!!

  125. LE says:

    Hi Mike,

    Thank you for your response. I actually have decided to stop cold turkey and the past couple of days have not been easy but have not be nearly as bad as I thought they would be. Honestly, I do not want of that stuff back in my system and would rather just work through this than wean off. I also took someone’s advice and have added vitamins and healthy foods into my routine, so that seems to be having a positive impact. I know the next few weeks are not going to be easy and am already feeling less productive, but am hoping in the long run this all works out and I can get myself back to being the me I love:) Thanks again!

  126. Andrea says:

    Hi again! Well I am officially down to 2.5 milligrams of adderall (started out taking 30 milligrams), and am very proud of myself for making it this far. I plan on stopping completely next week. However, my work has been suffering (I can’t seem to focus on anything), I can’t remember to do simple tasks (such as washing my hair while in the shower). I was cleaning this weekend, and was just walking from room to room b/c I couldn’t remember what I was supposed to be doing when I made it to the room I was in, but then would remember what I was supposed to be doing in a different room, so I would go to that room and end up forgetting why I went there. Since my energy levels are so low now a days, that didn’t last long, and I ended up getting nothing accomplished…. I am taking supplements, zinc, iron, omega-3 (6 grams), folic acid, and a pre-natal (not pregnant, but you are supposed to take pre-natal’s before you actually get pregnant)… while that seems to be helping a little bit, occasionally I forget to take some of them (imagine that, haha)… I tried no adderall last Friday at work, and people were talking semi close to my desk, and I literally couldn’t take it, I wanted to run, screaming, out the building, covering my ears, in the risk of seeming crazy, I did not do that- I took 5 milligrams and have been taking 2.5 milligrams since… any impute on how long till I am functioning at a normal energy level, not forgetting to do mundane tasks, and can handle multiple conversations going on around me would be greatly appreciated!

  127. Andrea says:

    Oh, one more question, will I ever be able to distinguish between actual tiredness and lack of adderall, so I feel tired? Does that make sense? I was thinking about that the other day, it used to be when my adderall wore off, I would feel tired, and now I always feel tired, but I know its not from lack of sleep b/c I get at least 8 hours of sleep every night.

  128. Andrea says:

    Well I am not taking any adderall at all! I have not taken any since Friday, and it is Tuesday, and I must say I do not feel as foggy as I thought I would. I totally recommend the weaning process to everyone. I tried going from 5 milligrams to nothing and that was bad (see my post above), but after just one week of 2.5 milligrams, to nothing, it was a way better transition, and much easier. Don’t get me wrong, I am still tired, really tired, but its not what I would of expected. I honestly thought that I would never be able to wake up, but as long as I get enough sleep at night, it really hasn’t not been as bad as I thought.
    Sorry for taking up so much space on your message board!

  129. ERIN says:

    Andrea,

    You will definitely be able to distinguish between actual tiredness and lack of adderall tired! I remember that horribile exhaustion you are talking about. I’d be so tired, I’d yawn over and over again. I remember almost feeling drunk at times as if I was passing out at the wheel of my car b/c I was so tired. There is a normal tired and its great. 🙂

    I know what you mean about people standing around by your desk. My desk is in the center of the office and people stop by like every 5 mins to talk. I actually told one of them the other day…grabbed his arm and said…”hey buddy, I can’t focus.” He moved closer to the lady he was talk to, but it will still not resolved. I need to be locked up away from everyone, I swear. I hope someone answers this question for you b/c I need help too! 🙂

  130. Teresa says:

    I am a wife, mom and recently laid off corporate recruiter. Before I moved to Seattle from La Jolla, California, I hated work! I worked part time and still found time to miss work to go to the beach with my kids! That was 5 years ago… That was before I started taking 30 mg’s of Adderall a day. My life was very painful atthe time we moved here and Adderall was the only thing that kept my weight down and my exercise addiction at bay. I, like others, loved food before adderall. If I was nit eating, I was exercising. When I couldn’t exercise, I smoked or took Diet Fuel with EPHEDRA. That’s when I think my dependency issues really started. I started using Diet Fuel with Ephedra when I started training for marathons. That was back in 1997! I didn’t realize that it was so addictive, nor did I understand why it gave me endurance and helped control my appetite. After Diet Fuel with Ephedra was banned in 2004, I had to quit cold turkey. I gained weight and missed the energy I once had.

    About a year later, I was in therapy and because of family history of ADD, I was easily diagnosed with adult ADD and given a prescription that day. I was thrilled to feel care free, thin and ultra-productive! I became so successful and “loved” work! My husband was finally proud of me and his neglect of me no longer mattered anymore. Though it’s painful being dependent on Adderall, it’s painful feeling the pain of a crappy marriage and dealing with the suicide of my mom.

    When I take Adderall those things don’t hurt me – I feel invincible. I know I need to quit but what will I be once I quit. Will I be just like I was after ephedra/Diet Fuel? Will I start to care that my husband ignores me everyday? Will I fall into a deep pit of sorrow when I have to face my mom’s suicide 10 years ago? Those fears keep me dependent on Adderall!

  131. Teresa says:

    My other fear is that i’ll go back to my sad, lethargic, pudgy self. I’m so attached to my cute, size 4 clothes and everyone’s admiration of my 40-yr old figure after having 3 kids. If I stop Adderall, I won’t be “special” or “disciplined” anymore… I’ll go back to being a sad, overweight, under-appreciated housewife, Won’t I?

  132. Mike says:

    @Teresa,

    Don’t quit Adderall unless you have a real reason to. “Being dependent” is not a good enough, because it’s not bad to be dependent on something that helps you. Quit (or reduce your dose) only if you can clearly see a way that Adderall is hurting. The hurt has to be serious enough that you would endure all the negative side effects of quitting in order to cure it.

    You have bigger problems. You SHOULD care that your husband ignores you every day. You SHOULD find a way to face your mom’s suicide. And exercise addiction is not always a bad thing, as far as addictions go. If Adderall is preventing you from registering the pain of those festering sores, then it may be worth it to step down a few mg’s and deal with those issues, then step back up if you want.

    Otherwise, if Adderall isn’t hindering you on those fronts, you can try to deal with those issues while you’re on the pills. I am not a doctor, but my layman’s advice is this: You may need to come down off Adderall a little to confront your mom’s suicide and your crappy marriage. Adderall numbs your emotions. Confronting emotional issues while you’re numb does little to heal your core. You must let the numbness wear off, so that your emotions scream loudly again. You will need your emotional self to get the most out of the therapy that will help your marriage and your dealing with your mom’s suicide.

    This especially applies to your mom’s suicide. You may arguably be better off addressing the marriage issue while you’re a little numb and over-confident, especially if you intend to stay on the Adderall.

    You are two different people: Sober You and Adderall You. If you fix your big emotional problems as Adderall You, they may only stay fixed as long as you stay on Adderall. If you quit Adderall one day, you may have to solve them all over again, re-factored for the needs of Sober You.

    Solving the problems as/for Sober You is harder, but if you pull it off right it will fix the issue for both your selves.

    Don’t know if that made any sense. It’s late and I should be sleeping.

  133. Mike says:

    @Poptart

    Take control of your dose first. End the roller coaster and inject some sanity into your daily routine. The key to this is enforcing an early “last dose of the day” cutoff so you can sleep like a semi-normal person and you’re not going up/down all the time. This will cut down on the crashes.

    Then taper off slowly, only at a rate you can handle. Don’t go down in dose until you’ve sufficiently rebuilt your willpower and work ethic to compensate.

  134. Mike says:

    @LE

    Hey man, cold turkey can totally work if you’re the type who can bite the bullet and bear through it. That’s what I did. You can make it if you can stand the chaos.

    You’ll get your self back. If that’s why you’re quitting, then it’s practically a guarantee. Just be prepared for your old self’s new desires.

  135. Teresa says:

    @Mike – Thanks for the insight, Before Adderall I paid my bills, I exercised, I spent time with friends, I had no dental problems, I had clear skin, I didn’t shop compulsively, I didn’t have panic attacks, I had measurable goals… . I just don’t care about anything now – I didn’t used to be that way. Last week I asked my Doc to up my dose to 40mgs IR a day because I’ve been so tired and un-motivated lately. Now, I just feel ultra paranoid now and all I can do is stay in my house all day stressed about how I’m going to find another job and worried I’ll never work again! I’ve somehow become highly claustrophobic! I think all this started after my dose increased from 20mgs to 30mgs…that’s when I stopped being responsible (for bills and self care). Things got much worse when my dose increased to 40mgs.

    My doc also prescribed clonzepam for anxiety (classic upper/downer cycle!) I took that for a year and lost so much weight AND hair! I stopped taking it in June because I became so depressed. I’ve taken myself down to 20mgs of Adderall before but once I started putting on weight I went back up to 30 again. I don’t dare tell my Doc about my fear of gaining weight – I know what will happen. It’s CRAZY! It’s horrible when you know in your head you’re hurting yourself with this drug, but you still “have” to have it to function! Can anyone control themselves on this drug – is there such a thing as moderation? I think not!

  136. Angie says:

    Hello Friends, : )

    I’ve been reading through a few of these posts over the past few months and it’s been the motivating factor for me since I started weaning off of Adderrall. I have been on ADD since 2004. In 2004, I started at 20mg, and by 2007, I was up to 150mgXR a day and also taking 2 short acting(10mg) on top of that on an as needed basis. (Yes, some doctors should not be in practice and this was one of them). : )

    Needless to say, my Life was running right by me and I don’t remember truly feeling any of it. It was all good in the beginning of coarse (first few years), and something drastic changed. Something to this day, I can’t quite explain. I went from loving people, my job, my friends, my family and just the whole damn world, thinking I was fabulously invinsible, to suddenly, not giving a “you know what” about any of it and/or the people in it. I became annoyed, frustrated, angry, bitter…etc…etc….I lost touch with friends..good friends! And went from being super close to my family, to super distant and detached…and I could have cared less about any of it at the time. All of this happended while on the ADD medication, not off and/or weaning off.

    One day I JUST WOKE UP! And I hated everything about my life and everyone in it. That was about 2009. At that point, I switched doctors and went down from 150 to 60mg in six months.

    At 60mg, well, probably, way before then, my life was crumbling before my eyes. I lost my job, my boyfriend, stopped working out and caring about my health and gained a ton of weight. Nothing inspired me, I was not passionate about anything and couldn’t think of one thing that I truly believed in. If you knew me before the medication, you would know I am not the uninspired or inpassionate kind of person. : )

    So now as of today, I am at 30mg and am finally starting to see myself again. It’s seriously liberating and overwhelming all at the same time. I so badly want to just stopped taking this crap and let the healing truly begin, but I can not deal with that insane withdrawal and/or how it so powerfully takes over my body and my mind. As you can all probably relate.

    I guess I’m writing this post to remind everyone who’s struggling out there, that “lifes a journey, not a destination”. It’s gonna get tough out there, but it’s your journey, and only you can make it better. Get through it, so you can fully experience the rest of it.

    I want to share with all of you that if you are ready and driven to finally get “you” back; it’s totally worth all the crap you have to go through when you finally get that feeling. That feeling of “holy shit” I see the world, I get it, and wow, life is pretty f-ing amazing, is what is driving me to get down another 10 mg, and then another 10, so on and so on. You have to find that!! Sure it sucks sometimes, but when I’m done with this crap , I’m going to start on the most amazing life journey and never look back, and I hope all you will do the same. As a matter a fact, I think we should party our freaking a$$es off once we all get there!!!! Good Luck to all of you!!! Keep believing in yourselves, we are all stronger then we think and just being able to spew our crap on this website is one enourmous step for all of us, and you all know it!!!!

  137. Joy says:

    How do I quit something that has made me who I am now?
    I have been taking adderall for 2 years now…I can’t even remember who I was before. I want so badly to quit. I desire God but without my adderall I swear I can’t even seem to pick up my Bible or journal.
    I know this is one of the main things putting a wall up between God and I.

  138. Mike says:

    Hi Joy,

    If Adderall has made you who you are now, and you LOVE who you are now, then there’s no reason to quit. The only reason anyone should ever quit Adderall (besides abuse cases) is if there is a missing piece to themselves that they can only attain by quitting…a piece that makes all the negative aspects of quitting worthwhile.

    Let’s dissect this feeling that you have that Adderall is putting up a wall between you and God. I try to stay to keep this site secular and spirituality-free, but I’m going to make an exception here. I felt the same spiritual wall. But in my case, it wasn’t like a generic wall. It wasn’t like “Adderall is hurting my relationship with God because God doesn’t like drugs”. It was like “Adderall is hurting my relationship with God because there are specific things that I feel God wants me to do, and I can’t do them when I’m on Adderall”.

    Does that hit home at all for what you’re feeling? You need to define the things that Adderall is keeping you from (if any), and make sure you feel like they are worth the (very large) trouble of quitting. If you don’t have those missing pieces clearly in sight, you won’t know what to look for when you quit….and you’ll just be lost AND unproductive, which is no fun.

  139. Meg says:

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I have been searching for something that is exactly what the entirety of this site is….Thank you.

  140. Hannah says:

    Thank you so much for making this site. I really think it’s saving my life. Thank you.

  141. Anonymous says:

    I don’t want to quit no adderall for some crank and his blog,
    face it more and more pills will be used for benefit and your kind will be at a greater disadvantage , the cognitive dissonance that will emerge from such thought as yours will make you guys do a lot of immoral things.

    Be free to introduce anything to your mind you are aware of.
    Be free to acknowledge natural consequences and recognize societal and psychological shortcomings.
    Be free to recognize that if you have ADHD and listen to the crank you will loose on your life. or believe him. up to you.

  142. LE says:

    So, I started the process in September, but did not finally flush what was left on my Sept RX until last night. I am in school and was taking “vacations” from the meds until I had an assignment due and then would go back on to write so that I could finish the semester with good grades. While i was able to do so, the back and forth of being on and off has been really challenging. I’ve gone through the withdrawal symptoms over and over again for the last few months and last night I was finally tired of it. So while I did attempt to quit cold turkey in September, it only worked until my first school assignment was due. But last night I got rid of my RX and already told my doctor back in September that I no longer wanted to take the medication. So this is it, I don’t have any left, nor will I be getting any refills, so now begins the journey. Thankfully i think this site is going to help me make it through, at least today because my exhaustion is beyond anything I’ve experienced yet. I was a little worried after I flushed the pills that I was really ready and this is really it, so I didn’t sleep much last night. I think, while I will still be going through withdrawal tom and the next day and so on, my happiness about being finished with the meds is only going to increase by the second. Thanks again Mike, I truly know this site is going to help me make it through this journey successfully this time!

  143. Rene`e says:

    Thank you so much for this website!
    Im 22 and i have been on adderall xr for 8years and yes it has helped me achieve so much. But my husband and i are in the process of weaning me off before we try to get pregnant. I have been on 30 mg for 5 years and starting Wednesday dec. 22 i went down to 20 mg. I have been hit with small withdrawls already. tired as hell and very un focused. i am scared to death of being the troubled kid i was before. the bad thing is im in the last 2 semesters of college and scared my grades will drop with out the medication but in the back of my mind i want to be happy and focused with out the medication.
    im glad to hear there are others with the same problems as me but i think im the longest user on here and that i know off. i been on ADHD medication for over 14 years now and hope to god the progress i have made in my life time was me and not the medication.

    if anyone has advice please give it to me!!! because im tired of ADHD holding me back from my life long goal of being a parent.

  144. Iron mike p says:

    Mike, your post on Nov.10, 2010, in the 2nd parag., hit the nail on the head for what I’m feeling. In addition, you start off by saying
    ” The only reason anyone should ever quit Adderall (besides abuse cases) is if there is a missing piece to themselves that they can only attain by quitting…a piece that makes all the negative aspects of quitting worthwhile.” That gives me hope and courage to move on in spite of my fear.
    I was clean for a few twenty-four hours in na and two of my favorite
    sayings were, “When the pain of remaining the same is greater than the fear of change, then we’ll surely change.” Pain is a good moivator. And second, “The best grounds for growth in recovery is identification with another addict.” I look for the similarities, not the differences.
    God has a reason for me to quit and my job is to find out what that reason is.
    It’s the ninth inning and I just woke up.

    Iron Mike P
    1957-

  145. Ashton says:

    As an intro to my story I’d first like to commend all of the ex-adderallics for going sober . You guys are amazing !
    My story begins here, as a child (im a female) I was never really fat but I always kinda had some meat on me..once I made it into middle school I began playing sports and became a little bit more fit. THEN highschool hit and my eating habits changed, I often found myself extremely depressed and I began binge eating. The binge eating eventually led me to become about 30 to 40 lbs. overweight once I reached college . All of my teenage life my mom had always been a stickler over what I ate and the portion . ( she is obsessed w/ weight and is a total stick ,addicted to caffeine!). The fact that she always screamed about my weight made me even more emotional and in turn begin binging even more. It was just the beginning of what seemed to be a string of Addiction.
    In 2007 I graduated hs and went on to college with my bestie ( yes, the one i still talked to and laughed with before ADDERALL). Eventually my slight case of ADD , which was mostly problems with sounds , had me kicked outta the college after the end of the first semester. I moved back home, entered into the community college and still did poorly, gained even more weight …i felt terrible about myself and knew no guy would ever want to marry me if i was so unconfident, overweight and mildly agitated with the thought of having to sit at a boring desk job the rest of my life. During the summer of 2009 my mom insisted I go to my doctor to see if I might have ADD, sure enough I did and was given a 20mg/twice a day dosage. I distinctively remember looking at the pills for the first time thinking, omg these seem so wrong but so right all at the same time!! hahaha But anyways, i took them and for the next few weeks felt like i was on top of the world and YALL KNOW THE REST OF THE SYMPTOMS that come with taking it but I still knew something was wayyy off. Needless to say I took them for roughly a year and a half and I can not recall the person I became through all of it I just associated the stupid drug with weight loss ( i had lost around 25 or 30 lbs. to it ) and the ability to feel euphoria alst while not going to Church anymore the entire span of my addiction.
    OK TIME FOR A FAST FORWARD TO THE DAY AFTER NEW YEARS EVE -JANUARY 1,2011- My mom was gone on a trip this last week,so basically i normally do what the hell i want when she’s gone! My boyfriend and i had sex, no condom on and he did go inside me AND it was exactly 14 days before my next period. Through all of the worry, i do what any typical adderallic does, browse through a gazillion google searches on pregnancy then i started thinking these pills can’t be any good for a baby. I start thinking “If the result comes back and I am in fact pregnant then im shit outta luck if i’ve been taking adderall!!”. I stumbled upon this Heaven Sent website around 5 am 1/5/2011 , read everything and printed out mike’s original comment. I decided I wanted the old me back, the old me that used to laugh so much and not be so aggressive towards people always trying to punch walls and shit. Those pills robbed me of who I was and my boyfriend even told me I was beginning to act highly bi-polar.I used the typical method for bloggers on this site and flushed the entire contents of the pills down the toilet 5:30am. My concern is the return to weight gain and binging entire boxes of pop tarts again. I’ve enjoyed the gym addiction and wearing sizes 6 and 8 instead of 10s and 12s but I want was is best for my possibly soon child as well as me. I am quitting cold turkey and am telling the pills to fuck off ! lol ( yeah, adderall is definitely still talking right now).
    I failed to mention that I am 22 years old ,idk just another random thought.
    Anyways, thanks so much dude for this website and everything you do for the Adderallics and ex-adderallics. You truly are sent from God!! and i believe that if You made it out alive Anyone can. Your first blog is pinned to my bedroom wall as motivation by the way ! 🙂 I will most certainly keep you up to date on my progress. Today is my first day off. This is a challenge that I can win and God can help me through!
    I love everyone , chuckin up tha deuces, Peace out !!! – A$H- <3

  146. Lauren says:

    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************

    On December 17, 2009 I took my last Adderall pill. I am over a year off the drug, but I continue to suffer from a thyroid issue that I wholeheartedly believe was because of the Adderall. I did not take an excessive amount, I took what was prescribed to me.

    EVEN AFTER I GOT OFF THE ADDERALL, THE DAMAGE HAD BEEN DONE. FOR MANY OF US, IT IS NOT NATURAL FOR OUR BODIES TO BE ON AN AMPHETAMINE.

    TAKE THIS AS A WARNING I SURE WISH I HAD A COUPLE YEARS AGO!

    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************
    *************** PLEASE READ THIS ***************

  147. ERIN says:

    Mike,

    Oh, how I can’t believe I’ve been struggling for over 2 years now to quit my addiction to adderall. It’s been 2 months and 1 day since the last time I took a pill and I am so incredibly very proud of myself. These pills have had a hold on me for 6 years total and I am so very grateful I’m done.

    Iron Mike P, I love this slogan! “When the pain of remaining the same is greater than the fear of change, then we’ll surely change.”

    My addiction to adderall had to really get bad in order for me to get well. My consequences have only gotten worse with time. See below.

    1. Relationship with fiance – gone. (over 2 years in Feb.)

    2. Overdose #1 – became stranded, schizophrenic, almost raped and killed. Went to the ER and landed in a psychiatric hospital.

    3. Overdose #3 – went to the emergency room, pyschiatric hospital, followed by 7 days of detox in a chemically dependent rehab.

    I surrendered this last bout in the Emergency Room. I was bipolar, schizophrenic for almost 2 weeks straight. The counselor at my outpatient program informed me if I go back to adderall at some point, I could endanger myself and become permanently schizophrenic. That was good to know.

    I am 2 months clean and sober from all booze, drugs, and smoking as of yesterday. This round…I am not nearly as motivated as I was this July when I quit. My psychiatrist doped me up on Lamictal, Seroquel, and Celexa so I’ve been rather drowsy and kinda like a fat happy zombie somewhat. I want to go off the meds because I feel like a part of me is missing, like I did when I was on adderall. However, I am no longer depressed, just sort of weird. Hard to describe it. I guess more than anything, I just don’t care about much these days. I’m definitely a different person and my friends and co-workers are loving the new me.

    I haven’t done much for the past 2 months other than lay on the couch and do the absolute minimum as far as taking care of my responsibilities. I hope and pray a day will come when I get motivated to do more, but for now I’m not pushing myself and enjoying food again. Hoping not to gain a ton of weight, but have accepted the fact I might and I’m okay with it for right now.

    I just wanted to keep you posted on my status because I feel we are somewhat special to one another being I was your first “patient” per say. 🙂 You were like my “adderall hero” and an inspiration to help see me through the storm.

    Hope you are well, Mike.

    Erin

  148. Mike says:

    ERIN!

    Always good to hear from you. Sorry you’ve had such a rough time of it, but glad you’ve got it more under control now.

    Weird is way better than depressed. Weird you can work with. Depression you can’t. And don’t worry about not caring about much about anything right now. It’s only been two months. Sometimes you need to exist in that care-vacuum for a while before some little spark gets sucked into it.

    You are definitely special. You were the comment that started it all, and I’ll remember you forever.

    Keep hanging in there, and keep us all posted!

  149. Olivia D says:

    Hi all,
    I am a graduate student at Columbia University writing my master’s thesis on Adderall use. I would greatly appreciate your input. Please email me at ord2103@columbia.edu as soon as possible. Thanks!

    Olivia

  150. Olivia D says:

    Mike! I’m trying to contact you! I’d really like to interview you for my master’s thesis and give this Web site some exposure. Please shoot me an email at ord2103@columbia.edu as soon as possible!! Thanks!

    Look forward to hearing from you!

  151. ERIN says:

    Mike,

    I appreciate your reply. I am definetely a lot (ok, like thousands times happier off adderall). Today was a real defining moment in my life. So I have a co-worker that sits across from and she’s on adderall. I studied her all day. I’d try to ask her questions, but she was so focused on her work I could tell it was highly annoying her that I was interrupting the task at hand. She really really hates to not have anything to do. I don’t blame her. That’s exactly how I felt on adderall. Her speech is so fast it’s hard to keep up. My brain is slow these days…I look at her, yet I’m like 10 maybe 50 paces back as to what she’s saying. I nod my head and smile as if I have a clue what she’s talking about. She would ask me questions about work (I am supervisor) and she’d figure out her own questions before I could even comprehend what she was saying. Phew!

    Ya know, all that being said, today was WONDERFUL. I believe God has brought her into my life (she’s still one of the newest people on our team) to help me. That trance she was in….it brought back horrible memories. It showed me that I don’t ever want to feel that way again. I don’t ever want to block out everyone and everything that is so precious about life that you miss when you’re high on adderall. I remember exactly what it felt like today to be where she was at and finally got to see it first hand from an outsiders perspective. Some jerk I was seeing this summer actually told me my mouth twitched like a meth head. Yeah, he was a keeper. NOT. Anyhow, he was most likely right and I don’t EVER want to be known as someone strung out on that crap every again. It turns people into jack hammer robots….I don’t miss that. I swear to God I don’t miss that. I do things a lot slower, but at least I can do them while smelling the roses of life.

    God bless!

  152. Chris says:

    It’s been over 2 years ( 2 year anniversary was Christmas Day ) and I am now working remotely living on the beaches of Costa Rica, surfing, waterfall chasing, scarlet macaw viewing, running in the jungle.. in the best shape of my life.. life is good! Thanks again Mike, for taking the time putting this site together. I am still very grateful for coming across it during my time of need and it giving me the edge i needed to dump those little pills down the drain! be well all and remember its worth it.

  153. ERIN says:

    Chris! I’m so happy for you! I remember watching your video and it’s so AWESOME you’re over 2 years clean. Congratulations!!!

    Mike,

    Omg, listen to this. So there are 2 or 3 new people in my department now taking adderall. They all learned about it after my incident in the emergency room and learned why I was so thin. I have up to possibly 5 girlfriends of mine taking it. All I can think of is that its all my fault. Do you know anyone that takes it that you’re close to?

  154. Mike says:

    Chris!

    Great to hear from you. Wow man. You totally did it. Wanna trade lives? haha

    Seriously though, way to go. You may be this site’s biggest success story yet. You’ve followed through with the whole “quit and change everything for the better” idea more than any other reader I’ve heard from. You should shoot a follow-up video with an outdoor backdrop. What a contrast that would be.

    And now you’ve got me curious what it’s like to run in the jungle. Makes normal trail running seem pretty tame.

    Erin,

    Starting to take Adderall solely for the purpose of losing weight is one of the most tragically stupid ideas capable of crossing the human brain. So let me get this straight. Their train of thought was: Did you hear Erin went to the emergency room?! What? Why? Because she was hooked on Adderall, got a spiked dose, and OD’ed. She almost went permanently schizo because of it. Wow. That’s crazy. Secretly to self: Adderall? Hmm…that’s why she’s so thin. I was always jealous of her thinness. I’m going to get a script for Adderall so I can lose weight too.

    Ugh. So retarded. How hard is it for people to just step out the door and go for a little run?

    That is not remotely your fault. It’s not like you said “Hey girlfriend! You’re looking fat and stupid. You know what you need? Adderall! It’s the best thing ever. Here, take one of mine. Take it! It’ll make you so pretty and smart too.”

    On the contrary, you probably gave the impression “Adderall wrecked me and was totally not worth it for me.” And then somehow they took that as “neat, I’ll try it”. Totally their own decision. DO NOT FEEL RESPONSIBLE.

    Anyhow, yes I have friends and coworkers who still take Adderall. One of my best and oldest friends, who I also work with, actually still takes it rather happily. But he doesn’t take it to be thin, of course. He takes it for motivation and focus, like I used to. He’s very regular about dosage and such, has built himself a happy life, and sees no reason to stop. And I don’t blame him. Like I’ve said elsewhere: it works for some people.

    I have another good friend who I used to work with and also still takes Adderall. Back when I was still on Adderall too and we worked together, I would meet him at the office at 4am sometimes so we could pop pills and knock out some cool projects off the clock. Now, years later, he still takes Adderall, but he spontaneously mentioned to me the other day that he was getting to bug to try to quit. I told him that I knew of a website he could check out that might help.

    As hard as it is to compare yourself against normal coworkers after quitting Adderall, it’s even harder to compare yourself against Adderall-fueled coworkers. I remember when I first quit, both of our other developers (the above-mentioned friends) were still very much in the peak of their Adderall love affair, so the work environment was very hyper-productive, which made for a much harsher contrast when I was suddenly a slug. It didn’t help that they both knew exactly why I was a slug (as they would be without their own pills), because they both felt I was stupid for quitting (at the time).

    Of course, as has been said elsewhere on this site (I think by you in one of your posts), it’s a huge self-realization experience to watch somebody who is on Adderall from the perspective of somebody who is not.

  155. davers says:

    I’ve been planning on getting off Adderall (I’ve been taking in for 1 year) mainly because it doesn’t help me with what I needed.

    I think it helps people who get so depressed that they avoid doing things, but that’s not me. My focus problem hasn’t anythign to do with avoidance. Instead my problem is that I’m easily distracted by so many different things. I’m already a positive person and adderall gives me the false sense that I can do everything … the stuff I must do plus whatever fancies me at the moment.0

    Because of this I can easily quit adderall at any time (and have for weeks at a time just out of laziness to fulfill the perscription) and have only kept with it because I’ve thought as soon as I’m doing with “x” project I’ll quit, but what I’ve come to learn is that it isn’t helping with what I want to get done for the reason I mentioned above.

    For me, the best thing to help me focus my efforts is to just isolate myself from my distractions (put my internet connection on an automatic timer, for example) between the hours of 8-12, and then 1-5. I use 2 tools: Splinterware’s System Scheduler Pro, and schedule an event kicked off every 1 minutes that brings my application I need to work on to the forefront (event type is “sequence of events”, note the window name can use wildcards like “*”). Another thing I use is a devcon command in a batch file to enable and disable my internet connection at strategic times – techy stuff but there are software apps out there that do this too).

    A suggestion to wean yourself off … DMAE and L-tyrosine supplements … these are harmless brain supplements (like vitamins). They’ll decrease the euphoric adderall effects but will keep you from falling flat on your face so others won’t notice you dragging.

  156. danielle says:

    My main reason for taking adderall is to perform at work and I used to think that quitting would make me hate my job and working and would make me not good at it anymore. But then when I thought about it I realized that I loved what I did before I ever took adderall. I just took adderall to make it that much more fun. So if your trying to quit and you think doing stuff won’t be as fun anymore or you won’t be as good at doing stuff as you were before, just think about how much you loved doing it before you had adderall. You were good at it before and you are going to be just as good at it after and you can potentially get the same enjoyment out of it as you did when you were doing it on adderall.

  157. Elyse says:

    I have been on adderrall for years and overtime dealt with a ridiculous degree of side effects. The medication worked so well for me but prevented me from getting sufficient sleep. I don’t know where things took a turn for the worse exactly…to make a long story short I began taking more than my 60mg a day dosage. I mostly did this to avoid having to deal with a mind blowing breakup -and to keep going. In turn, I began throwing myself into my work and I got addicted to it – both my work and adderrall. I had my fallout months here and there where I would take a month or two off and reset myself. Then I was prescribed klonopin for anxiety. The combo of the two led to complete destruction. I’d take adderall for days and pop a klonopin in whenever I felt tweaked out or my body hurt. I didn’t WANT to sleep -I hated it. And I wasnt going to regardless so I rationed taking another adderrall to be productive.
    For 6 months I probably slept 20-30 hours a week. I could stay up for 3-4 days no problem. I had mastered it. One day though, something in my head clicked -on or off…I’m not sure. But nothing was ever the same and hasn’t been to this day.

    I had a mental landslide. I didn’t know what was going on….people could tell I was on something. It started to affect every aspect of my life. I switched from klonopin to ativan at one point hoping it would help but I went through the script even quicker than my adderrall. To give you an idea of my adderrall tolerance at times I’d have to take 4 30mg pills at once. I always took 2 to start off my day regardless. One day I took 10 30mg XR’s and couldnt even get out of bed. It did nothing for me! Ultimately my mental state almost completely deteriorated. For months I tried to get a grip on my usage. I quit cold turkey for about a monrh or so but truth be told since I’d go through a whole prescription in a week and be out for 3 I’m sure it made no difference. *Note- for the 6 months I went nonstop I had 2 prescriptions. Finally, after staying up for 7 days straight I went to my psychologist and doctor and fessed up. Believe me I wouldnt have done this had I not been so cracked out. They werent even concerned about the amount I was taking or the psychological and physical damages that I may have caused myself. Instead they diagnosed me to be bipolar and put me on tegretol.
    Ten days later I decided to check myself involuntarily into the psychiatric unit. There I was observed and was told that my manic states of bipolar occur bc I am so up and outgoing and essentially hyper. I dont have that depressive down side – but apparently thats the normal part. So then I am put on invega sister to syroquil. This was a very sedated numb feeling. I felt nothing. I took that with the tegretol expected to stabilize my mood. but here’s the kicker: THEY PUT ME BACK ON ADDERRALL.

    I took such high doses for so long, to be honest, taking the normal dosage makes me feel like complete shit. It’s so bad, in fact, that I’d rather not take it at all. I also noticed the adderrall wasnt working as well combined with the other meds.

    Ultimately I quit all of them one afternoon. And I felt more even keel than I had in a long time.

    The doctor’s didnt care to examine that I wasn’t sleeping bc of the adderrall and that exceeding my normal dose was causing me extreme anxiety and paranoia, More importantly the lack of sleep put me in a complete manic state of mind. It would anyone. Anyone who takes adderrall reguarly knows how it can affect your emotions. -You don’t have any! but eventually all that bottled up feeling has to come out. Not to mention the effect benzos have on someone’s state of mind.

    My point to this is that for a minute I let doctors who didn’t care to take the time to get to know the real situation convince me I was bipolar. Not only that but it validated my adderrall usage.
    The psychologist in the hospital verbatim told me I am not bipolar and to just get back on adderrall and take it the right way.

    I quit taking adderrall for 60 days and then I went back thinking to myself I could never go down that road again. I cant sustain the lifestyle anymore but Im 6 days into it and I’ve taken way more than I should have already. Sad part is taking a bunch throughout the day doesn’t do anything for my focus. It is a waste of the pills. I don’t know how to get control of it- or find that balance. I know that I am chasing the high that it gave me the first time I ever took it but it will never come back. And if I could only just find balance I probably wouldnt be exhausted after day one and could take my normal dose. But being doa requires more just to stay awake.

  158. John says:

    Although I have frequented this site for a number of years it was not until recently that I felt compelled to share my story in the hopes that it could help others. This period of reflection was initiated by a recent phone call from the specialist that originally prescribed Adderall for my ADHD over a decade ago. I had lost touch with her when I entered high school as her practice is focused on the treatment of young children. Thus, she was overjoyed when hearing of my academic success over the past eight years and hoped that I would be able to speak with parents of prospective patients at some point in the near future. She explained that I belonged to a small minority of individuals that began taking the drug in childhood and continued into early adulthood. (I was one of just 150,000 adolescents age 3-17, prescribed in 1998). Therefore, I could provide a unique prospective into the experience of taking Adderall as a person matures. After some initial hesitation, I finally agreed to attend an informational meeting while I was home on Christmas break. As the semester came to a close I thought very little about the aforementioned commitment and before I knew it I was walking into a meeting that would completely change my outlook on life.
    After my former psychiatrist spoke about the merits of the drug for about an hour; she turned to introduce me; explaining that I epitomized, “The success that can be attained with the help of Adderall.” Following this brief introduction, she indicated that I would be made available to answer any questions that members of the audience may have had. To this end, over the next hour and a half I was steadily bombarded with a wide-range of questions covering every topic imaginable. Obviously the answers I provided were overwhelmingly positive as I could not bring myself to speak of the horrific experiences associated with the drug. The implications of my actions did not hit me until a few weeks ago when I began to receive emails from several parents that had attended the meeting (I gave out my email address upon exiting, at the behest of multiple parents). In total, I would receive five separate messages, each informing me that my story had eased the decision to place a child on Adderall. The content of these emails, coupled with recently learning that the little brother (age 9) of an ex-girlfriend was just placed on the drug (her parents felt safe having known that I was on it for so long) sickened me. I knew that I had to come clean and tell these parents the TRUE story of my Adderall journey. To this end, yesterday I replied to each with a message that not only included the full story but also greatly cautioned them against placing their children on Adderall. While I will not post the entire letter as it is quite lengthy; the paragraphs that follow contain a brief summary of the affects Adderall has had on my life. I hope that it helps any parents looking for additional information on the drug. More specifically to the readership of this site, I compel anyone that was given the drug as a child to be truthful and open about their experiences, it can/will make a difference!
    The quintessential hyper-active child I was prescribed Adderall in the 4th grade after completing a neuro physc evaluation which determined that I had ADHD. Over the next three years my daily dosage was steadily increased from 5mg to 10mg. Despite having little recollection of this time in my life, I can distinctly remember feeling different on school days than I did during the weekend. My thoughts were free flowing and unrestricted on non-school days, while I was filled with anxiety and questioned myself constantly in the classroom. In retrospect, more than anything being prescribed Adderall at such a young age made the act of taking it habitual. It was there for my first book report and first final exam, thus, I didn’t know how to function within an academic setting without the use of Adderall.
    Upon entering high school I began to notice more adverse effects of the drug; i.e. not eating or sleeping. Instead of allowing these to affect my performance on the football field, I began a regiment familiar to anyone that has taken Adderall for an extended period; only taking the drug the night before an exam to help me cram. As a learning disabled student I was confined to intermediate level courses; for which this strategy worked perfectly, allowing me to attain all A’s and B’s. However, during a meeting with my advisor at the end of my sophomore year I came to the realization that a decent GPA in intermediate level courses would not be enough to gain acceptance to a top-tier college. Thus, I made the fateful decision to begin taking the drug on a regular basis at the outset of my junior year. Filled with a desire to learn my grades improved almost immediately as the 3.9 GPA on my end of the year report card would show. In retrospect, I also ignored many warning signs in an attempt to justify my almost daily consumption of Adderall. (Like pulling an all-nighter prior to the opening round of the state football playoffs, and being knocked unconscious on the opening play as a result of being dead tired and dehydrated). In an attempt to attend the best possible school, my Adderall intake only increased during my senior year, resulting in an acceptance to my dream school; The University of Wisconsin at Madison.
    The college atmosphere both inside and outside of the classroom is unbelievably conducive to Adderall abuse and dependence. Academic performance is solely determined by two or three exams each semester; the amount of pressure this places upon students is a recipe for disaster. In addition, you are away from home and can no longer hide in the confines of your home when coming down; you must interact with others. To make matters worse, despite being subpar at mathematics (520 math SAT and 760 verbal), I decided to major in Finance. Academics started to become a real issue during my sophomore year as I began to take the core classes related to my major. To make up for this lack of natural aptitude in the subject, I simply became more and more dependent on Adderall. To this end, by the spring semester of my second year, I had formulated an almost unthinkable daily schedule fueled by the energy and focus that 40+mg of the drug provided. It did not take long for a concerned group of friends to take notice prompting them to note my daily routine over the course of a month in the hopes that it would enlighten me in regards to the person I had become. (Obviously it had zero impact). On average per week, they calculated that I spent 65 hours a week in the library and just 41 hours sleeping.

    As ridiculous as it sounds, for the last 2 and half years I have maintained a schedule very similar to this. In retrospect, the adverse effects, both physically and mentally, are truly alarming. The three heart palpitations that have led to extended stays in the emergency room will probably cause permanent cardiovascular damage. The bouts of depression and anxiety that have led to many hallucinations over the years cannot be good for my long-term mental health: I will never forget the nights spent staring out the library window asking myself if I should just jump. In addition, the recent knowledge that I was among the first group of adolescents prescribed Adderall greatly adds to my fear that I will suffer from some long-term effects.
    So, here I sit asking myself one simple question; was it worth it? Having recently accepted a high paying offer to work for an established Investment Bank upon graduation, it would appear so. However, after giving my situation some thought, I am not so sure of the answer.

  159. Mike says:

    @John

    Thanks so much for sharing your story here. If you don’t mind, I may post the whole story or some excerpts on the front page at some point. And I’ve linked to your comment from the General Adderall Questions page, under “Should I put my kids on Adderall?“.

    I’m as interested as anybody else here about the long term affects of Adderall, and you may be one of the longest-termers on here. I know that’s probably scary as hell for you, but it could be incredibly informative and helpful for all of us. Please post updates of any new developments.

    And best of luck going forward. Hey, at least you’ll have money once you take this job! Maybe you should bank and invest some of it (which you’re probably good at) in case you want to take time off and try life without (or with less) Adderall. I have a friend who’s an investment banker. He got laid off from one job and the severance package was so big that he just decided to take 6 months off and just do triathlon training all day before going back to work.

  160. Allie says:

    I took adderall this morning.. just started taking it and had been with drawling for a month. Things were getting better and better, and then i started second semester of grad school. but yea, my work ethic is totally shot.. and yes it is mental. but wow… the motivation or whatever that made me do work on my own two years ago (pre adderall) is just not there whatsoever…my sister came in my room last night and was like “you’re not going to class?” and i was like.. yea i’m having trouble getting in the right mindset” then she made me feel better for not going to class.. but seriously.. i should have gone, i was supposed to talk last week.. didn’t go.. and was supposed to talk yesterday instead. but i didn’t get my work done. so to save humiliation i skipped. it’s careless : /. I got off work two hours early to do work, and starred at my book.. couldn’t do it.

    I think JK said it correctly above. my mind is so manipulated. I took adderall for two years. my character is different and the worst part is… my friends don’t even remember who I was, they are like “adderall doesn’t change you that much” *yes it does!* (so i just don’t bring it up anymore, because i’ll describe things to them and they listen.. but nothing I say is validated. THEN, I got on here… and i have never read these things before but it is exactly what i’m describing to family and friends here at home and they just cannot grasp it, no matter how good of listeners they normally are. Adderall is just unreal). not having feelings validated is like having something supressed… it’s frustrating and it’s a thorn in my side. But I know I am not myself at all. My “image” to the outside world is completely different than what It would be had I been myself for the last two years. People used to admire me.. now i’m out of college, don’t have a real job, don’t look nice as often, work at my dads office as a secretary and am in evening classes. I had so many opportunities offered to me (teaching position, non profit grantwriting (which I couldn’t do on adderall- creativity was gone, i’m normally such a good writer.. even though it takes me a while to organize my points.) But I just don’t care anymore. When I was on adderall I did things I was never supposed to do, and saw things I was never supposed to see. I was treated differently than I had ever been treated before because I was acting differently than I had ever acted before. I reached a lot of new lows. and I got away with it… now that I know I can get away with it.. i’m not scared of doing it anymore, sort of. The amphetamines made me feel like everything was ok… but everything was NOT, NOT, NOT, ok. I said the worst things to my parents : (. I fought with my boyfriend… who is still hanging in there. He said.. “we’re going to ride this wave together” talking about withdrawal. He was the one who grabbed me and said, “when you are on adderall it’s night and day” (this was before he asked me to be his gf, but he was falling in love with me.. but not when i was heartless and shameless on adderall. I didn’t need him on days i took that stuff.. totally not a good things to take when you’re supposed to be falling in love with someone. Adderall was my crutch on those days, not this amazing new boy that came into my life) UGH.
    The way I grew up thinking the world was is not the way it is. I saw a darker side on adderall, because I had this false sense of confidence.. I was untouchable..so people treated me without care in certain situations.. because I didn’t care, it didn’t make me sad, I fought back, which made things worse. I had to take aderall this morning because I am so behind in my second semester of grad school classes. I didn’t go to class at all last week.. and the panic/depression/anxiety that would have kicked in (like the old days before I took adderall) just is not coming in. I don’t care, I’m not going to classes. This is so not me.. three years ago in college I would have been so ashamed. I had a presentation to give and I was like.. i’m not going to go to class, so my teacher was like you can do it next class, and I didn’t even go. who does that? : / Honestly, I know it looks bad to blame this all on adderrall, but every time I come onto this sight… my deepest thoughts and fears about aderall are written by tons of other people. It’s true, this stuff has effects on people that can’t be explained to people that don’t take aderall. They just don’t believe it. It MANIPULATES your mind. And don’t get me wrong.. I know there is a recovery, and I know I will be a great person (it’s a struggle to get back on that track) but aderrall ROBBED me, of what was supposed to happen. I have innattentive add, not hyper at all, and active only in things i’m passionate about… I’m always going to have to fight waking up in the morning depressed, frontal lobes not lighting up, thinking wow I have so much to do i’m such a slob, i get left behind and left out and i am not comparable to other girls my age and i can’t think the way they do… i have a presentation to give and i am dreading it, why don’t I just get up and make coffee and be cheery like my roommate?” (by the way i was diagnosed with innattentive add after I had completed college and a year of work.. and the symptoms I just described were there when I didn’t know I had it.. then i read the symptoms and I was like oh my gosh, exactly, thats exactly it right there. Anyway…

    I feel guilty because i’m posting this without revising it. but I have a lot of other work to do for class tonight… thats why i’m up and doing this, distracting myself, but also passionate about this and wonder if i’ll ever make a contribution to this page if i don’t do it right now.. otherwise id be lying in bed or watching tv with roommates, or driving around listening to music, or talking to my bf.. the whole time in the back of my head thinking i’m neglecting my work. i spend 75 percent of my free time thinking about what I should be doing and not doing it. a million things to do.. and i didn’t do anything, not even laundry.. things i normally would have done. I never go to the gym and always used do that.. these last few years have been so unlike me : / ? ugh.

    I want to revise this. it’d take me a few hours that I dont have.. but if i’m confusing I will. I think this is important. maybe I should do it when i’m not on adderall.

  161. Allie says:

    The reason I knew about Adderall was because two of my ex boyfriends were on it coincidentally. So I don’t know what that says about our relationships… but I love my boyfriend now and he grabbed me and made me get off of adderall. He didn’t have anything to do with it before I came along but he realized it made me different and couldn’t stand when I took it. The stuff does more harm than good for me.

  162. Holly says:

    So here I am trying to find the strength to quit. I went from 5mg to 10mg to 15mg and I’m supposed to now take 20mg XR in the morning but lately I have been abusing the dose and increasing it to 40, 60 and the other day 80mg. I am going to stop while I’m ahead and start taking 10mg daily. I am vowing right now in this blog that tomorrow I am only taking 10mg of Adderall.

    Argh this is going to be hell. I am an actress and on location at the moment shooting a pilot. I can’t go cold turkey on this kind of thing especially when I have to perform. Lord give me the strength to atleast minimize my dose.

    I truly believe I need ADHD meds. I am more scatter brained than most. I have gotten into many care accidents because I am so all over the place but when I take Adderall I’m focused. I just want to get to a point where I don’t feel like I need more than prescribed.

    Taking over the recommended amount is also due to my fear of gaining weight. I am actually supposed to be losing weight as I’m a bit heavier than I should be and nobody argue with me as this industry is image obsessed and I’m not leaving it so I have to find a way around this mess I’m in. I think it’s good I am catching myself early. This is the first month I’m on 20mg tablets although have gone over many times but I think I’ll be ok. I am giving my meds a roommate and he is giving me the dosage I should be taking daily. I’m not completely against meds but I can see addiction up ahead to a point of no return. I am going to deal with the mild consequences before they get too severe. Give me strength everyone. I am not religious but I might be turning over a new leaf in the next few months.

  163. Holly says:

    Oh and sorry about the bad spelling…it’s late and I was typing fast.

  164. Jonny5 says:

    Holly,

    It’s really great that you’re recognizing the dangers of this stuff early on. It’s the real deal as far as addictions go. Worse than cocaine or oxycontin in my experience.

    I hope you’re doing OK with your maintenance plan. Sometimes a person has to finish a job or semester or whatever to be clear to quit. Can I offer a few pointers from my own experience?

    1. Do not ever miss a nights’ sleep if possible. Even a few hours are better than nothing. If you’re gonna use Adderall and especially if you over-do it sometimes, it’s helpful to have some valium, xanax, or ambien around so you can come down and get some zz’s. The worst thing to do is stay up all night and then take more to keep going. You never know when you’ll start crashing and you don’t want to be working or with people you care about when it happens.

    2. Consider switching to instant release Adderall or even Dexedrine so it clears your system faster. Dexedrine is a good taper med that isn’t as physically stimulating, so it won’t leave you feeling so cracked out. But it’s more euphoric, therefore habit forming in its own right.

    3. Orange or cranberry juice is real good to drink. Eat some spaghetti or lasagna w/ a tomato sauce. Acidic things help clear amphetamines.

    4. If you get angry or suspect someone is being unfair with you, for the love of all that is holy, wait a day before “calling” them on it. Adderall will eventually start to make you mean and paranoid – it’s probably you (in your head), not them.

    5. Take a walk in the morning before taking your dose. Moderate exercise seems to be at least as good for ADD as the pills.

    6. When you decide to quit, try to stay busy or at least entertained, so you don’t think about it so much. The psychological hold amphetamines have is stronger than just about any other drug. Comedy movies and shows are awesome – b/c even if you’re not able to feel happy, you’ll still be able to laugh.

    7. Know that it won’t be long before the pills start affecting your health and looks. For an actress, I guess that’s real important?! Luckily, even if you’ve been at it for years, the body heals very fast.

    8. If you end up having to try a few times to kick this, don’t give up. Relapse is common with amphetamine recovery. Think of it as a chance to learn, not the end of the world if it happens.

    Keep at it. It may take awhile to heal depending on how long you’ve been on, BUT you’ll start to see positive changes within a few days.

    You’re gonna be fine 🙂

  165. Bee K. says:

    Hey Guys,

    First off, I would like to say how amazing this website is and how happy I am to have found it. Soooo heres my story…. I am a law student who was prescribed adderrall about 2 years ago. I was taking about 50 mg a day because it was the only thing i could do to keep up with the work. Soon enough, the amount of work became overwhelming and i started drinking heavily along with taking the adderrall to counter the stress and started chewing tobacco. I was chewing a full tin of tobacco, taking about 50-60 mg of adderrall a day and drinking at least a pint of whiskey every single night!!!! It came to a sudden hault when i had to be rushed to the E.R. one morning because i felt like i was having a heart attack. They kept me there for 3 days doing tests on my heart, etc. Turns out that i now have an irregular heart beat and a slight heart mur-mur. (SP?) Either way, after that situation i have decided to quit on my own!!! All of it!!! I have quit drinking liquor, chewing tobacco, anc adderrall completely for 3 weeks now. The downside is im experiencing tons of side effects and withdrawls. I am in my last semester of law school and have tons of things to do each and every day and have put them off for the past 3 weeks because i thought this would get better, but it hasnt. This page is the only thing i have been able to read and actually understand since then. Also, I have experienced terrible mental withdrawls….schizo/suicidal type thoughts which scare me at times but i fight through them. I still drink wine at night every night to help curb the alcohol withdrawls but do nothing for any of the others. It all boils down to this…the next 8-10 weeks determine my life!!! With school, exams, trials etc. My main question is…”do i just start taking it again to finish classes, graduate and take the bar exam?” OR “do i try and stick it out even longer and risk failing and being stuck in school another term and more depression as a result of it?”

    I have read many of all of your stories above, and I can relate to almost every single one of you. Anyone who has any ideas, your insight would be greatly appreciated.

    And also, like all of the above people who have found this site, Thank you Mike for doing this….you have no idea how much this means to each and every one of us on here!

  166. Jonny5 says:

    Bee,

    That’s some scary stuff right there. I think you know the answer to your question about taking it to finish the semester. If this stuff did cause some minor damage to your heart, there’s no way a doc could continue to prescribe (if (s)he knows), and I don’t think you could continue to take it with a clear mind. It’s just not worth having a heart attack over.

    It seems like people rise to their appropriate occupational level regardless of their education. So if law is your passion, another semester probably won’t matter much in the long run. Taking the time to address your health shows wisdom.

    In my opinion, I’d see if I could halve the class load, or drop the semester. Does your school have health services/insurance? A cardiologist could advise you about how to get the most out of your heart health. If you drank enough that you have physical symptoms of withdrawal (shakes, sweats, insomnia, anxiety), get to a doctor about that, too – that’s pretty serious.

    Your attitude is awesome considering what you’ve been through. Mike says something around here about learning to see the big picture – something Adderall makes hard.

  167. Alyssa says:

    How do you quit when you and your partner are addicted, but every time you try to stop the withdraws between the both of you are so bad that there is nothing but screaming, crying, anger, and shame; and the worst part of it all is you have a 1 year old to take care of that does not deserve to see her parents like this. And you just cant quit because you dont want to put her through all the madness.

    Where do you go from there?

  168. Jake says:

    I just want to say that I think this site is amazing. Its comforting to know that i’m not the only person who feels this way about adderall. I’m a senior in college and am graduating in May. In high school, I had always gotten awesome grades without even trying, but once I started college, it was the complete opposite. About three years ago, when I was on the verge of failing out of school, my dad thought that maybe I should go see someone about it. I went to a neurologist who diagnosed me with ADD. He prescribed me 25mg of adderall XR. The adderall completely changed everything. I felt motivated, very goal oriented, was getting A’s left and right. A few months after starting it though, it wasnt working as well, so the doctor raised the dose. He continued to raise the dose every few months until I was eventually prescribed 60mg. I have been on this dose for about a year now, but I cant remember the last day I only took 60mg of it. Its very often much more than that.

    I have become so completely dependent on this crap. I associate adderall with doing ANYTHING productive. I feel like my personality is GONE, and plenty of people have confirmed that feeling for me over the past year. My parents are constantly asking me “Whats wrong? Why do you look so sad?” At my last job I had, I got so tired of my managers asking me why I don’t smile, that I eventually stopped showing up. I feel like I am constantly irritable, I am always getting headaches, I get about 5 hours of sleep every night but only after taking nyquil or going out drinking. I used to barely ever smoke cigarettes, but now, I sometimes smoke a pack in one day. I know im rambling on and on about my life, but Im about to get to the point lol..

    My school work is not even difficult at this point. I dont even have a job. Theres NO REASON for me to take adderall anymore, only reasons why I shouldnt take it anymore. Why though, when I think about going to class without adderall, do I get the biggest pit in my stomach? What should I do? After stopping adderall, how long does it take before you no longer think about it, or are you always kind of thinking about it? I just want some faith that I can continue being productive and useful without this stupid pill. Enough is enough.

  169. Jake says:

    Alyssa

    I was thinking, maybe if you guys took turns quitting, it might be a little easier. That way you wouldnt both be irritable at the same time. You could quit and then your boyfriend would be there to support you and then you could do the same for him a week or two after.

  170. Alyssa says:

    Jake,

    Yea thought about that the thing is im the one who absolutely NEEDS them to get through the day. He goes to work without them but then will come home and pass out. So I am the one who has more of an “addiction” but then in the past when I have tried quitting I fail because he is so mean to me since I am moody and I just cannot take that time to sleep all day in order to quit. I would love to but I have a toddler who needs me.

    And I found your story very interesting. I feel the exact same way with the pit in my stomach thinking about doing something without adderrall. I too have raised my dose much more than 60 a day which was my dosage. My personality is opposite of the bubbly person I used to be. I am distant from everyone, I cannot express feelings, and I am always worrying about something.
    Anyways I noticed this was never how adderall used to COMPLETELY be back about 6 years ago when i started it; the side effects were never this bad. When i got pregnant back in the beginning of 09 I still loved my adderall, when I started taking it again in the beginning of 2010 I noticed I could not het that addy high that I was looking for, I’ve done a lot of research regarding problems with adderall that I’ve been having ( Im sure others on here have probly done the same) but turns out then when Shire sold out to generic companies in 2009, they took on Vyvanse as their new main focus. Vyvanse didn;t take off well so after highering the price of adderall 3 times, people still didnt want vyvanse so Shire resulted in switching the adderall formula not long after. So for about 2 years now, “REAL” adderall doesnt exist anymore. No matter if you get the generic or shire brand name, it’s a different thing….

    sorry for rambling, my point being is that this new formula has been known to show addicting side effects along with many other negative effects (severe depression, chest pains, terrible anxiety, etc). I used to get all happy when I took adderall years ago, now I feel like everyday that I am popping this pill that I do not need so often; and I never used to be like this. of course i loved doing adderall sometimes a bit more than usual, but still I didnt need a couple to get out of bed, one to do the dishes, one to take a shower a couple to clean up the downstairs, etc. So I have to say I beleive a lot of the stuff i’ve been reading about the scams behind the adderall companies, I am not for sure of anything but maybe that is what made you feel like a loss of personality/depression if you started experencing it in the last 2 years and never did before with adderall.

    If this is the first you are hearing about this info then you should really look into it. Its quite interesting. Sorry for the long post!!

    I have to say I enjoy this board, its nice being able to chat with others trying to get through this 🙂

  171. Jake says:

    Alyssa

    What you said about them changing the formula makes so much sense. When I first started taking it, I did get that euphoric feeling and I continued to for about a year. I always figured that feeling went away because I had built up such a tolerance. Hmm..

    I can relate so much to what you said about taking it too often. I am basically the same exact way. I wake up, take a couple pills, and then every time I have to do something, I will take another. Some days, by the time im ready to go to sleep, I have taken so much that I am completely disgusted with myself to that point that I swear I will never take adderall again, but once I wake up the next day, the first thing I do is reach for my pills. Sometimes I feel like I have to “prepare myself” for everything by taking more pills and im just so tired of it. I feel like adderall just numbs all of your senses and turns you into a overly productive robot. Its crazy. I think that the entire thing is mostly psychological. I will wanna take another pill, and then literally 3 minutes after taking it, I “start to feel it working”…its not working after only 3 minutes tho..its all in my head, taking all the unnecessary extra ones just ends up giving me a headache half the time and making me feel like crap. I dont know why I keep doing it.

  172. Jonny5 says:

    Jake and Allysa,

    I don’t know if Shire changed the formula or something back when, but I don’t think they can without getting the med re-approved by the FDA, which takes lots of time and money.

    What you may be noticing is the classic arc of the amphetamine cycle. There’s 2 cycles, really. The most well known is the short term binge/crash/abstain-heal/repeat pattern of heavy users.

    The other is the long term. I remember when I first started, it was just the best thing ever. I didn’t understand why I’d never heard of Adderall before. Total “wonder” drug. And it was like this for almost a year. Over time, it didn’t give me as much of a good feeling, but a lot more anxiety. Then there were physical type feelings (tics, tremors, chest pain, skin breakouts). And by then I was completely chained to it. The cycle has been well known since like the 1930’s.

    Point is, I don’t think it will ever be as good as it was in the beginning.

    Allysa, that sounds like a tough situation. A child makes it very profound. Both of you probably need to be 100% committed to quitting. Otherwise, the other person will fall right back into it. Couples counseling maybe? I didn’t really gel with 12 step programs, but a lot of people really find them helpful. And they’re free, and take a lot of time, which is good when you don’t know what to do with yourself.

    Jake, I wish I knew how long it took to quit craving them. From what I read, the cravings get much less frequent over time, but they’re probably always gonna be there. For me, after a month, it did start to noticeably improve. Amphetamines are really, really powerful; in ways that other things just aren’t. It not you and you’re not weak.

  173. Kathleen says:

    I’m 29, been trying to get a job since Thanksgiving. I’ve gone back and forth between applying for jobs that require a degree and minimum wage jobs. My #1 fear working an 8-5 is how I’ll manage to go pick up my monthly prescription from the doctors office, and of course remember to call it in. My main reason thinking about quitting adderall is my heart. I’ve been on this stuff ten years, it’s no suprise my heart’s sending me a message. My biggest fear giving it up is loosing the feeling of “being in control”/confidence to take on tasks and weight gain. I’m easily gonna weigh more than my husband without it. I have some serious issues around being not fat and I know this is gonna be hard for me. I dislike how the adderall helped me get a degree and the jobs that require you to have a degree all require good time-management and organization skills, things I do horribly at, and thus I desire to use adderall to cope with this. I haven’t been high functioning on adderall for years now. One day, which I can’t pinpoint, I was never the same again on adderall. Suddenly, the things I didn’t want to do the most, I wouldn’t be able to force myself to do them anymore like I once was able to do with adderall. I used to be able to go through my room, clean out every single paper, etc. etc. and now I can’t even decide where to start. I feel overwhelmed and worry/obsess too much. I schedule most things according to when I’m taking my next dose and after 1.5-2hrs. after my last dose, I don’t accomplish almost anything, unless you count driving in my car to the store. I was never much of a person before adderall came into my life and I worry that’s all I’ll be if I quit. Right now, my heart’s my only real motivation to stop. Don’t know what I’ll do if I get an interview for a job which requires a lot out of me. They see this college degree and expect a certain kind of performance. I doubt I’ll get a minimum wage job, haven’t for months now, because I’m overqualified. What am I to do? Take the job that requires a degree and hope for a compassionate boss I can open up to about needing to stop treating my add because my heart is suffering? I tell myself “maybe I’ll just take adderall to train, and once I get used to to the job, then I’ll quit”. There’s never an ideal time to quit I guess?? Who knows, all I know are two things: #1 it’s gonna be hard to quit this drug after ten years and #2 I’m really glad I’m not alone on this. Glad I found this site. Godbless all you guys. We’re already shortchanged, then we got to deal with quitting an addiction. Not easy stuff.

  174. Allie says:

    Adderall sometimes makes me think normal people are crazy. like i really created a whole theory that my boyfriend was abusive. um.. hes not?

  175. Abby says:

    Hello, my name is Abby, and I’m going to share a little bit about my battles with adderall, and gonna try to keep things simple and short. I’ve been addicted to adderall for the past 4 years. It consumed my life, my spirit, my soul. My 6yr old son had to call an ambulance as we were pulled over on the side of the interstate because I took a little to much that day, and went completely numb and thought I was having a heart attack. I refused to have the ambulance take me to the hospital because #1 I didn’t want to give my adderall up, and #2 I didn’t want to hear my family say, “I told you so”. After time had passed I decided to quit. I quit cold turkey and did it for a month. I just wasn’t ready that time, and my mind and heart wasn’t into it. I gave in and got another prescription. After more time had passed, I decided to quit again. I went through with drawls so bad that my family put me in a psych unit. Once again, my mind and heart weren’t fully dedicated to quitting, and I left the hospital with another prescription.

    After much heart ache and tragedy, I decided I wanted to quit, and I was serious about it. I confided in my mom and dad, and they were supportive and offered to put me into treatment. I told God that I was putting it in his hands, and asked him to be with me every step of the way. The day I quit, my mom and dad were going to be leaving 2 days later to vacation in Mexico. They were ready to cancel their trip so they could get me into treatment right away. I told them just to go and that I would be okay, and I promised them I would be strong and I could go when they got back. Anyways, I ended up not having to go to treatment. I felt like shit for about 4 days, you know the usual sleeping and eating all day. My eyes would literally roll in the back of my head I was so tired. I decided to start taking my anti depressants that I was supposed to be taking, called “pristiq”. At about 1 1/2 weeks, I felt so good, and was so surprised how easy it was. I believe it was God’s help and love mostly, and of course the pristiq has helped tremendously. I have been clean for one month and 3 weeks. I am not overeating, I work out, I pray, and I go to bed at night like a normal person. Being off adderall I have noticed I have so much more energy, and silly enough, I AM MORE ORGANIZED AND GET MORE DONE!!!!! No more obsessing about the stupid orange pills, no more counting them and thinking about it all day. No more heart ache. My soul is back, and I’m on the right track. 140 mg everyday or more is what I was taking by the way.

    Thanks Mike for this awesome website! More people than we know are suffering from adderall addiction, and this offers so much help, support, and motivation.

  176. Rebecca says:

    Hi… I started googling the best way to “ween” off of adderall when I came across this site. I have been been taking 20 mg of this crutch for about 6 years. I have a high stress demanding job, 2small kids, and diagnosed with ADHD have was treated prior with everything from bus par in Hugh school , to Prozac outside of college before finally getting on adder all. Of course all of posts I have read on this site are very accurate! Some I did not even notice n myself until I read comments from other people. What I can say is- I am now 6 days NO adderall- no anything! I had anxiety over stopping cold turkey. It’s the only way! Do not wait another day! I ave been taking 20 of adderall along with 10mg of lexapro for over 3 yrs. (b4 I was on 10 addy and 20 lexe) I toke the ssri to cut the se ‘s of adderall. Stopped adderall in Jan and noticed the side effects coming on fiercely! Aggression, irritability, moodiness, impatient w kids and others, quick tempered and miserable. Couldn’t get away from myself and wanted too. I feel as though I have missed my kids life due to this drug. Not having time to stop and listen to them, play with them, just be attentive and show them they r important ! My job keeps me on the road all day… I was so focused in my thoughts that I would not take the time to answer the phone to talk with a friend. It also is a pill that if I drank over a few glasses of wine I would black out, and do things that were completely out of character for me. I became emotionally disconnected from my husband , mother and family. It made me almost numb to the people or existence that I was not directly involved in at that moment. I have always worked out. Started Doing high intensity interval training and my resting heart rate 6hrs POST WORKOUT was 94 bpm,!!!! I would have palpitations and fluttering beats.; some nights lying in bed my heart would beat so had that I would have to getup and walk around. Scary!!!!! Thanks to this website and a higher power – I feel like a COMPLETELY different person! I did cold turkey this stupid drug. The first 3 days I was moody and sleepy. On the 4th day, I felt like a new person. My appetite has not changed, my attention span is surprisingly good!
    Knowing what to expect and how to combat those things helps. I feel like I have an emotional connection with myself now! With that comes my precious family, friends etc! I am sooooooooo thankful I quit this awful med (. Which became a total crutch ) that now I am soooo much better off without! I feel like a new person! Almost like I can actually allow myself to enjoy the ” little things” n life that I have been rushing through for years!!! Unfortunately, these little things happen to be the most important things at the end of the day!
    Stop today, it’s the best thing I have ever done for myself and my family. If u have ADHD, u will know ur triggers and being aware and prepared is the most important thingin living with his clean.

  177. John says:

    This is the end of my 6th day without adderall, and sadly, this is the longest Ive gone without taking it for the 3 years ive been on it. This wasnt really by choice, I ran out way too soon after taking 100-120mg per day when im only prescribed 60. Anyway, Im so glad this happened. I feel so relaxed, calm, clean, and just great. Previously, the longest I went was like 3 days, and by the 3rd day I felt like total shit and had myself convinced that i needed adderall to be happy and productive. Well this time, the 3rd day I felt like shit, and the 4th day was even worse. Yesterday and today though, I have felt great. It was worth sticking it out. I feel much more confident about it this time because I forced myself to go to class and do homework, where other times I would just mope around like a slob. Im just gonna keep forcing myself to be productive like everyone else, without crack in a pill. Hopefully I will just get used to it and it wont be a big deal anymore.

    By the way, I love all of your stories, they are so inspirational and its crazy how much I can honestly relate to most of them.

  178. Jordan says:

    I just want to quit taking adderall. I can’t control the cravings I get to use it. Instead of taking what I’m prescribed, i end up taking 3 or 4x that amount because I can’t help but want more. I love the high I feel, that invincible feeling. I get all my studying done, clean like crazy, organize, shop, always productive. I usually go on these binges on Fridays after I’m done with school/work. I don’t sleep until saturday night because I stay up doing things. So I spend most Saturdays sleep deprived and depressed, I cry a lot. I ignore everyone and avoid seeing friends or family because they can tell if I’m on it. My behavior gets so irrational and it scares me. The worst part is that two years ago I went to rehab because I knew it was out of control. Yet I’m still abusing it…

    I posted on here last May about how motivated I was to put this behind me, but hopefully I will this time around. Came across this website today and I’m encouraged again, so thank you.

  179. Chris says:

    Stopping by again. I wanted to share a link to a documentary I have been working on the past year while in Costa Rica. Its aimed for younger kids.. in an effort to showcase a group of people that have overcome almost impossible obstacles in their lives to live their dreams. Quitting adderall was definitely one of those obstacles for me and actually one of the main people in this documentary. Its been nearly 2 and a half years since I quit. And I am living my dream every day. Please share this inspiration documentary if you like it on Facebook, Twitter, email, or any of your favorite Social media platforms. It would mean so much to me and everyone involved. It’s 38 minutes long so please sit back when you have enough time to enjoy it all the way through. Keep in mind the target audience is kids around the ages of 11-15 so somethings may seem silly.. but I think by the end you will get the point. Hold on to a dream and never let go, because there are too many people and things in live that will try to drag you down. Thanks everyone! and I wish you the best!
    the link to the video is below:
    http://vimeo.com/22575742

  180. Abby says:

    i believed in myself and over came this addiction. june 29th will be 5 months clean baby!!!!!! if i can overcome this habit of 5 yrs, anybody can. i know its so hard but i promise people, there is sure light at the end of the tunnel. if i have any advice it would be to talk to a psychologist and just be honest. anti depressants are so helpful while kicking the habit. i know everyone wants to be normal and not have to depend on a pill, but i just wanna throw out there how much pristiq helped me. i only took it for 3 months and was done with it with no problem at all. best of luck to everyone tryin to quit, and i promise you can move on with your life. to all those who have squashed this shit congratulations and keep on keepin on. God bless!

    ps. of course keeping God close and trusting in him is always a must :o) <3

  181. Mike says:

    Way to go, Abby! Congrats on quitting!

  182. Janeysaiz says:

    Thank you for this site. I am about to start this journey. Started on adderall about 5 years ago, dosage slowly increasing, sometimes taking more than rx’d. I have recently gone through several life stressors in a short period of time including back surgery #1, bully boss & job change (turned out to be for the better in the end but bully boss was hell on earth), failed back surgery #1 due to stress of bully boss (body stops producing bone cells under stress and mine was spinal fusion), just had back surgery #2 and am 11 weeks post op. Anyway, through all of this, adderall I think kept me going physically through the routine of my life b/c otherwise, it was very difficult. However, the aftermath is that I am highly irritable, sluggish without it, moody, short fused and over it. i have done many things in my anger, which I know is stress related / situational but the adderall responses are basically out of control and out of character. I don’t even like myself.
    I think remembering who I used to be is really important. I graduated from high school with great grades and got into a great school, where I also graduated from with above average grades and a determination to go to grad. school- I then got into the grad school I wanted and graduated top of my class including writing a thesis and earned the academic, clinical and research award of excellence to boot. All of this without adderall.
    I totally FORGOT i did all of that and I was happy and an achiever without it. I was a clean and organized person, a little distracted in meetings and fidgety is what prompted me to start on adderall, actually it was more like 8 years ago, but a lower dose. The higher dose was about 5 years ago.
    I know I need to heal emotionally from my stressors but I think taking the adderall out of the picture will help me be able to do that more effectively as I will be able to feel and heal. My job is great and ultimately not too taxing or demanding so I shouldn’t have a lot of trouble there. I struggle mainly with losing self-control and missing my old self.
    She was fun, outgoing, could be spontaneous, didn’t lash out in anger, was social- I am now a home body, constantly agitated and overly fixated on stupid stuff.
    I want to go back to school and get my PhD and i was thinking, I can’t do that without adderall, but the reality is, I can, I already did it once.
    I think for me the hard part will be the tiredness – oh, i can barely sleep right now as it is, and I am tired on waking up, adderall helps me get into “go” mode. So, I am going to have to find ways to motivate to actually GET to work and do the routine tasks of the day.
    I had lunch with friends who were talking about old times- abotu 10 years ago during grad school actually, when we would go out and I would do thinks like interpretive dance to music making everyone laugh and rap/ freestyle into parking meters on the street etc. I was outgoing and I was having FUN living life.
    My marriage is a wreck, my instability through all of this and anger outburts have caused a significant rift and ultimately, I need a supporter. He couldn’t support me through some of the stressors b/c I would come home and be a disaster from the stress and the adderall wearing off. God.
    I think getting off of it will give me my control back. My self-control. Emotional regulation and the capacity to sort through the feelings that have gone on in the past couple of years with regard to huge life changes after the back surgeries (can’t run, can’t play soccer any more, 2 of my passions although, running should be okay in 8 months or so)
    I JUST told my husband I was getting off it it and that I might be tired and unmotivated and I could use his help. I am only working PT right now so it is the perfect time to stop and get through this period. If I need to sleep or be down, I can be on my days off etc. for at least 2 more weeks. I have to work 4 hours tomorrow and then I am off Thurs and Fri so that gives me Wed, thurs, fri, sat, sun to get through the roughest period. I imagine the start of the second week will be difficult to motivate through but I will get through it.
    I would love to return to my fun loving self who had some degree of patience.
    May also start seeing a counselor near work to get through some of the things I have been dealing with related to surgeries and bully boss situation to move that process along also.
    I think I feel better already.
    Here we go!

  183. Annie says:

    Thank you for starting this forum. I truly believed I had lost it until I read some of these articles. I am a 38 yr. old single mom of 3 that lost my husband and son to a fire in 2003. I was immediately prescribed prozac, then a few years later heard of something that made you lose weight and kept you awake and didn’t make you shaky. That sold me, all I had to do was pay the $75 to the doc to get a script and I was hooked. I since have had xanax, phentermine, tramadol, and anything else that would numb me and assist me in raising these kids by myself. I coached baseball, worked full time, went to Brownies, Head Room mom for the parties, cleaned house, always gave and drove and did everything it took to attempt to make it through the day, but I never conquered any of them. My plate was overflowing and I never cleaned it up. There was no consistency, there is no structure, mommy is out of control! Day 5 tomorrow of no adderall and I found this website. The doctor keeps prescribing me other things like Stratera and pristiq and I AM OVER IT!! I just want to be healthy and not yell at my kids and cry 22 times a day. I want to have a clear mind and remember their childhood, for now that’s what I’m trying to do, but it’s not easy!!! Prayers are good. Thanks for letting me vent. Here’s to living for today 🙂

  184. jo says:

    I’ve been on adderall for the past 5 months. I started on 15 mg then went up to 20mg. After awhile, I hardly stopped feeling the effects of the 20, but I didn’t mind it. I was still alert and focused, just not as awake and jumpy when I first started taking it. I barely was crashing from the come down because I hardly felt it to begin with. I talked to my doctor about all of it and he raised me to 30 mg.

    I’ve taken 30 mg for 2 days and absolutely hate it. I feel like I’m on a drug and I’m not myself. I don’t want to eat and can barely be around people. Im anxious and I could feel the come down. I am going to call my doctor asap about switching back to my normal 20 mg dose.

    After reading all the post, I am realizing how messed up adderall can make you. I truly don’t want to become addicted, or feel like I’m on a drug. I’m considering going to my doctor to ask for 15 mg to start a detox from it. I used to think I’d be fine without taking it. I used to be fine. in the beginning I didn’t take it on the weekends and felt great. Recently my lifes been crazy busy so I’ve been taking it everyday.

    I don’t think I’m ready to stop now because I’m getting married in a month and don’t want to go through the awful come downs everyone is describing. I’m not going to take it tomorrow and see how I feel. I don’t want to “need” something to feel awake and normal. My question is, after 5 months of taking 20 mg do you think the withdrawal will be that bad? Should I go back to my 20 mg or go down to 15mg before the wedding? I’ve been completely happy with adderall until I got put on 30 mg. help!

  185. Mike says:

    Hi Jo!

    Thanks for your comment. If you were happy on 20mg, start by just going back to that. Quitting just not to be dependent on something isn’t the best reason in itself. If it helps you and you’re worse off without it, then there’s no harm in staying on it. Quitting only makes sense when you feel that you can be better off and happier without it…and when you’re willing to put in the work to do so. That said, 20mg/day for 5 months won’t kill you on withdrawals. You should be back to your pre-Adderall self again in a few months after quitting. Good luck, and congrats on your wedding!

  186. AngieR says:

    Hi everyone! This site is amazing! Ok this is the first time I am admitting all of this so here goes: I have been on Adderall now for a little over a year. I started it because I wanted to lose weight, although I told everyone else it was for many other reasons as well, i guess the only one i was kidding was myself. Well, right off the bat I started taking about half-a full extra pill a day or every couple of days. I had energy through the roof! Got some landscaping done, cleaned my house a little bit more, and talked A LOT more than I already did. (lol) Within 2 months I dropped 15 lbs. which today is right back on. I stopped losing weight at the 2nd month mark probably because I wouldn’t eat a whole lot all day and by night time, an already sensitive time for my binges, I was eating my bag of Maple Nut Goodies religiously. So, there went the weight loss excuse. I began feeling like I didn’t concentrate as good as I could before pretty much right off the bat, although I could have higher energy levels than I ever had, I just felt like my mind was in 30,000 different places instead of 10. So yes, I guess I did get more done (not completely) but I did start more projects let’s say. From my mind being in 30,000 places at one time I began getting very irritable with my children. Things had to happen right away or those 30,000 things would never get done! I knew at about 3 months in this was not a good thing and wanted to quit. But didn’t. Here I am a year later and I am on Zoloft, and Adderall 60mg xr everyday which I actually take 90mg a day because over time 60mg didn’t seem to do much to me anymore. I have ZERO sex drive, have put back on all the extra weight minus about 5 lbs. and just feel so not myself. I keep thinking that the myself that I miss is the myself I was trying to escape and how I want that old self back again, just more refined this time. I want to loss the weight myself, through diet, and exercise, I want to play with my kids for a hour straight without being like, “Ok, I gotta go do this now, or do this now…” I want to write again, freely. Without the constant thought of everything I do being artificially made by adderall. I start back up at the nursing program in a month so I am scared but I know I can do it. Today is my last day with this drug I swore off when I was 16. Here’s the really bad part, when I was 13 I was put on Ritalin and still ended up flunking my classes and dropping out, not all because of adderall, there were family issues happening that were the main reasons for me going crazy but my dad threw away my ritalin, that by the way I would snort from time to time with my friends to get high. From that point on my life did get worse for awhile but now I am 29, have 3 beautiful children that I quit smoking for, and try to live for daily, and I managed to get into the nursing program with all A’s then I did the stupid thing of getting back on stimulants. I will concur this. I have concurred so much and with God in my life this time, I know I can do it. Thank you for posting this site, it is a great motivation. Us “ADD” or “ADHD” people aren’t dysfunctional or disordered, we are gifted, caring, although sometimes to caring that we are willing to sabotage our own self to make others happy. We get on these meds hoping to please others some way…may it be weight reduction, a higher ability to get more done for others around us, or to just fit some mold we are told we need to fit by others. This is not true. Many of us may have lacked discipline growing up, like I did, hence the dysfunction in area’s as we grew up but I am confident we can overcome these things by learning, faith, and courage. I hope you all are doing well and I pray God will bless us all as we embark on discovering and inventing our new better selves!

  187. K says:

    Thank you to everyone for posting on this site, it has been very helpful and uplifting. I was diagnosed with ADHD in college nearly 12 years ago and prescribed adderall. As I’m sure for most of you, the first year was the best year of my life (or so I thought). I was in the best shape, had a wonderful relationship, getting A’s in my classes and felt like on was on top of the world.
    After college, I tried several times to stop taking adderall but convinced myself that I needed it for my job and it made me more productive and helped me focus. Over the years, it became more of a habit and made me feel normal but also had some bad side effects that I ignored. I convinced myself that the good outweighed the bad.. I know that some of my mood swings and crazy fights after mixing my pills with alcohol helped me to push away friends and real relationships. I never cared..I always convinced myself and others I was fine by myself. It wasnt until the past couple years..I realized that my prescription I needed which was just a routine..really was an addiction which I could never admit. I have been in a relationship the past 7 months with the most amazing man. We have been getting in fights after a fun night with friends for no reason and he almost left a few days ago. I finally opened up to him about my adderall use and what it causes me to do and say an my impulsive actions. We also realized that my back and neck pains (which I started going to a chiropractor for) were a direct result of my adderall use for soo many years. My stomach pains and chronic heartburn..as well as my sore muscles for no reason..also a side effect of my adderall use. This was very hard for me to open up to him and admit to myself that I need help to stop. Yesterday..I took all my pills and flushed them down the toilet..and tore up my last script. It felt great and extremely scary at the same time. So many thoughts started going through my mind… “who am I without adderall?” “Will my friends like me without adderall?” “Can I function like a normal person without it?”
    I recently left my job and know that I am in a good place where I can really focus on me and finding the me without adderall.
    So..here I am 2 days sober off of adderall.. I have been sleeping most of the day but feel more clear headed than I have in a lomg time!
    I am excited for my future and terrified to go through all these phases -ups and downs. It’s comforting to know that there are others out there going through the same thing.
    Thanks for the support…I’ll be updating this blog throughout the weeks. After 12 years on adderall…there are bound to be some big changes in my life.

    -K

  188. Johnny says:

    I’ve been taking adderall for almost 4 years now. I started with 20 mg/day. Over time, I somehow persuaded my doctor to up my dosage to 90/mg per day. But I usually take about 150 mg/day… and run out early.

    5 days ago, I quit taking Adderall… cold turkey. Not because I ran out… but because I want to be free, so very badly. As you read this, please keep in mind that I’m extremely frustrated right now… as I normally consider myself to be a fairly decent writer. At the moment, I am having a hard time organizing my thoughts… and it is a struggle to string words together to make a decent sentence. I simply do not have the patience to carefully craft this post… so please, try to bare with me, and I will try my hardest not to ramble on with unnecessary details, and to keep my thoughts somewhat organized.

    Okay, so I just discovered this website, and it is comforting (in a selfish sort of way)to know that there ARE more of you out there just like me. I guess I am finally coming to terms with what everyone has been trying to tell me since I started taking it: I’m a completely different person thanks to Addy (for the worse). I’ve lost most my friends, mostly because I’ve pushed them away. I do still have friends, but they are new friends… who are “into” the sort of things that I consider to be “productive”. And even they are probably about ready to give up on me; thanks to my unpredictable temper, flakiness, lack of patience, mood swings, etc.

    Adderall has completely changed my thinking pattern. I started viewing my friends as a big waste of time. Hanging out, and doing the sort of things that friends do together, makes me feel anxious. My mind believes that it should be spending its time being more “productive” … like staying up all night doing “research” and running my “online business”.

    I do have an online business, and was doing quite well with it. But since I stopped taking Addy, I am completely lost. It seems so overwhelming to keep track of sales, and cash flow, and inventory. Before, I was taking on the job of like ten people… and it was fun! I had no life outside of the business, but didn’t care. I’m 32-years-old, live with my father, and don’t have many friends. I haven’t been in a relationship for about a year or two… and my daughter is now 10.

    Just a few years back, my social life was very active. I had a long-term girlfriend who I was deeply in love with (not my daughter’s mother). To be honest, it wasn’t the healthiest of relationships, and it’s for the best that it didn’t work out… but I was at least passionate about people.

    Okay, now I’m rambling… and I have a million things to do that I don’t know how to get done. I have a bottle of pills upstairs and I know if I pop one or two then I’ll be back on track. But for some reason, I can’t get myself to do it… and I risk to lose thousands of dollars and let down a number of people. Mostly family members who lent me money to get the business started.

    Grrrr… I don’t know what to do. But after I quit taking addy, I spent the first four days mostly sleeping. I’m finally starting to get a bit more energy… and was able to play tag with my daughter. This totally sucks… she’s with me for 3 weeks right now, and I totally look forward to the time we spend together. But I just don’t have the energy… and I know I’m being a less than stellar father. We mostly sit around and watch TV =(. She’s the one thing I’m usually very passionate about (people-wise). And we always do a lot together. Except this time.

    Okay well… god.. frustrated. I know this post went to hell. Started out okay I guess… but went quickly south. Thanks for reading.

  189. Johnny says:

    Continued from above…

    I guess I’m just struggling with the idea of quitting adderall… and whether or not it is really worth it. It did help me in some ways, but everyone seems to miss “the old me”. Even though I kind of think the old me wasn’t as great as they seem to remember.

    But I do want to feel a real passion for life again…. I think. Or maybe I should just pop a pill. IDK!!! Any help or advice will be so greatly appreciated. For now, I’m staying strong. But today I feel closer than ever to giving in and just taking a damn pill.

    One last thing… my motivation to quit is this: About 6 weeks ago my scrip ran out like 2 weeks before I could refill. I had no choice but to quit. I ended up not re-upping right away… and actually went a whole month without Addy. Let me tell you, after two weeks, I felt like A MILLION BUCKS. I was out playing tennis, cracking jokes with friends, out drinking at the bars and enjoying myself (which worries me a bit)… it was CRAZY. All of a sudden, it’s like the old me was back… I felt like THE OLD ME. Everyone was even telling me it was so good to have me back. I couldn’t believe it. I thought that old me was gone forever… but I guess I just needed to detox for a few weeks.

    But I fell behind on work… and needed to catch up. So I finally got a refill. And the zombie me came back. I was up all night.. trying to get stuff done. So I decided to quit once and for all!

    So yeah… that’s where I’m at now. 5 days into this… and really struggling. I was only back on Addy for like 8 days, so assumed the withdrawals wouldn’t be so bad this time… but they seem worse.

  190. Mike says:

    Hey Johnny!

    Life doesn’t have to stay the way it is when you’re dredging through withdrawals.

    You have three basic choices:
    1. You stay on Adderall, get more than enough work done, and try to force yourself to live life and have fun while mostly “faking” your old self.
    2. You quit Adderall, dive back into life and your old self (for better and worse), and figure out a way to get enough work done to keep the lights on.
    3. You reduce your dose and/or take more “drug holidays” to try to achieve some sort of balance.

    In any case, I’d start with lowering your dose a little. That will serve all three options, and you can decide later which path you want to really commit to. FWIW, if you do decide to quit, you’re going to have to go through a phase where you disappoint pretty much everybody around you until you figure out how to be responsible again. That’s the worst part. So if you do quit, be ready. And probably don’t quit on a week when you have your daughter. You want to go through withdrawals as alone as possible, because you’re not going to be very good company during that phase. The exception to this is distracting yourself with friends if you need to.

    Good luck. Come back and post updates!

  191. Johnny says:

    Mike, thanks so much for the feedback. I really appreciate you taking the time to respond to my post.

    The funny thing is, I’m not even sure why I’m quitting. It’s just something I feel like I HAVE to do. But maybe I haven’t thought this all the way through, and it WOULD be best to slowly decrease my intake. And you’re right, it probably wasn’t the best idea to quit when my daughter is with me, for obvious reasons. But here’s the thing… she usually likes me to go to lay down with her when she goes up to bed, and watch TV until we both fall asleep… Or if I’m taking addy, until she falls asleep, and I sneak downstairs and work (or get sidetracked) til 4 or 5 AM. So, I figured with her here, it’s a perfect opportunity for me to get in the habit of a normal sleeping pattern.

    Today is day 6 or 7 (can’t exactly remember), and I’m starting to feel a lot better. Last night, my daughter and I jogged AND played tennis. We decided we’re going to exercise every day. We even went grocery shopping last night for a bunch of healthy food. Man, I felt in such a good mood last night and was pretty excited about today. I went to bed at 11 PM and woke up at 9 AM. Ate a healthy breakfast, now we’re about to go jogging again! =)

    Also, I decided to tell my daughter last night what I’m going through. I’ve been struggling with this for a while, because I wasn’t sure if she is old enough to understand. I’ve always hid from her, the fact that I take a prescription pill. But I told her, and she was very supportive. I wanted her to know why I’ve been a bit grumpy lately, and low on energy. I think I made the right decision. If memory serves me correctly, compared to myself at her age, she’s incredibly mature.

    Okay, starting to ramble again. Sorry. For now, I’m going to stick to the cold turkey method and see how it goes. It just feels like the right thing to do. And I’m starting to feel better as the days pass. Thanks again for your support. I know I’m not even close to being in the clear, and I could go back to the pills at any time. But for now, I’m enjoying the moment. Wish me luck.

  192. A Friend says:

    To Johnny

    Please know I’ll be praying for you and you are on the right trail. I pray you will find the right people to support you and to hold you accountable to this honorable endeavor to rediscover true life. But you will need others. We all do. We cannot live isolated, or we fall.

    May God lead you to right place and take you on the journey you were made for.

    Here’s a cool story- there was this guy named Zachariah in the bible, who was told that his barren wife was going to have a son. He was told his name was to be John, but he didn’t believe it could happen.

    Because of his disbelief, he was made unable to speak. When his son was born, everyone wanted to name him after Zachariah (as it was the custom to name kids after their dads) but his wife said, No. His name will be is John.

    Zachariah had the final say and writing it out, he then read it aloud, “His name is John.”

    At that moment he got his voice back and proclaimed who John was for his generation.

    I want to tell you right now and as you read this- “Your name is John.”

    Your name is John. You can do this and then can do more than this. You can do it John. Do NOT give up. John do not look back. Your name is John. Others will do what they want to do, but YOU must push on and follow through.

    John, do not give in. You are made for more. You weren’t made for drugs or even to meet those expectations of others you were saying. You were made for so much more. You can do it John! I am praying God will show you the way.

    (The name Johnny means “God is gracious.”) There you go 🙂

    Out of what seems like barrenness, YOUR LIFE can come forth.
    May God order the time you are to read this. With you brother. -from FL

  193. K|V says:

    I “feel” like I can relate on nearly all aspects of everyone’s posts. Thank you for making this website, which I bookmarked 😀 I’m trying to read it all, but I find myself reading each sentence 3 times, out of order. Where are my eyes directing my attention? Honestly. Haha. Anyways, I digress. Some background: I’m 18. I’ve been on Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa, and probably more, who knows anymore? I don’t feel that they’ve done anything positive for me. Or it’s possible that I’d miss doses being forgetful. Mainly the OCD creeps up and drills the idea into my mind that a 20mg dose of Prozac will countract the Adderall that day, and I won’t feel it to whatever potential it still possesses for me.(Don’t ask me why, I don’t get it either) I hit my bottom on Vyvance and the 5 months of 60mg Adderall XR. Quitting was so tough, but I read some journals from way back, and saw how happy and clear minded I was having been stimulant free from Feb 2011-June 2011. What brought me back? I’ve been on anywhere from 20-80 mg of IR tabs a day. I’m prescribed 50-60mg daily as needed for ADHD symptoms..blah blah. Even going a couple days without it, I feel hazy and starving. There’s not comfortable in between.
    There are times when I want to turn off my brain, and take a break from all the thoughts and overly focused energy that keeps pulling me back every time I take a step forward. It’s hilarious that I’m complaining about the Adderall actually doing its intended purpose. I’m supposed to feel focused, not distracted right? However, I find myself trying to distract my BRAIN from my BRAIN by the end of each day. I want to know if anyone has some words to add to that feeling. I love how I feel when I’m off it for the 3-6 days I can manage, but for some reason it’s not enough to leave it behind me for good. I love feeling like the clouds have parted in my mind, and the storm has ended. Off it, my thoughts come quick, where on Adderall it seems like I have to come up with 20 reasons why the grass is green and the sky is blue before coming across a simple answer I would have acquired if I were 100% sober.
    I’ve battled body image issues since I was 13. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love skipping meals during the day, but I know that results in a depressing comedown. Those are the comedowns that leave me smeared across the floor and I can’t separate my thoughts, progress, or even who I am anymore. I need more reasons why I’m better off without Adderall. 3 hours of excitement is somehow worth throwing the remainder of my life away. I’m tired of fighting and feeling guilty that I know what’s right, but I still take the little monster out to play. I refuse to accept ‘addiction’ as a part of my life, but I’ve let it get comfortable in the control seat of my life. I’m sure everyone can relate to losing much self worth during the downward spiral. I need clear reasons to celebrate my life, not run away from it.
    Sorry for the narrative
    -K.v.

  194. Annonymous says:

    Hello, I am baffled as I just came across this site and reading each and every one of your posts, I am feeling inspired and relieved that I am not alone. I know that sounds very cliche but I feel NO ONE understands what I am going through. I constantly have the battle in my mind everyday “should i stop taking adderall?” In a nut shell, here is my story. I am 24 years old. I am an actress. That said, i have ALOT of pressure on myself for weight, and appearance. When i started taking my adderall (off and on for a year now) I was amazed at how easy everything became, and how much I was getting accomplished. Then I started looking AWFUL. Horrible and i mean HORRIBLE skin and just pale and sickly looking. So, I stopped. Go figure…. i gained an estimated 15 pounds and fell into a deeper and darker depression, got absolutely nothing done and wasted away a few months of my life until I decided to get back on adderall. It has been 3 months since I started taking it again, and you wouldnt believe how far I have come in my career in that short amount of time. OKay, so recently I was on set, and had the WORST panic attack. I felt insecure and wanted to run and cry and lay in my bed but was being filmed and photographed and stared at by 100 people. And this last week, my heart is hurting, and it keeps getting worse and worse. I cant work out because I feel like I am going to have a heart attack, I am moody, freak out and cry and explode when things don’t go my way. Also, i am having serious issues sleeping. I guess I am just rambling, but I wanted to know, what if the adderall makes you an actual better person, but know it is bad for your health?

  195. sara says:

    I found this website by chance, on the day my ‘addiction’ hit the wall. I’m on day 3 without adderall- something i thought that was my friend for so long. I started taking 15 mg xr when i was 18 and started college. It was so easy-too easy- to get an rx. I am now 21, going on 22 and have gone from 15mg xr to 30mg xr back down to 20, ect ect. Finally once my anxiety was so high due to my over-excitedness, i cut down to 10 mg of the normal instant release tablets. In my mind, since i had cut back it wass okay. I thought to myself this is nothing compared to me when i was all cracked out on the 30 mg. I have even gone the past 6 months or so with only 5mg of this evil pill. Which further allowed me to justify my use. I now am on a cocktail of persscription meds minus one (adderall) and I firmly believe that I would not be on an antidepressant or antianxiety med if I hadnt started taking this in the first place. I know it may seem insignifigant to many of you who struggle with missing higher doses of this stuff, but the fact of the matter is, i still needed that ‘superman’ complex to get my day started. I find the scariest part of this journey is the fear of not knowing, or remembering who I am without this drug. That fear is nearly crippling. I think thats the scariest part of the whole process… what the hell is going to happen to me once I dont have my ‘booster’ pill?! Anyways, thanks so much mike for making such a helpful website, i dont think i would have even made it these 3 days without it. Goodluck and love to all, you are not alone.

  196. sara says:

    another thing, just reread my post- I can hardly write like I used to without this stuff. terrible!!!

  197. kristine says:

    OMG.. You really know exactly how to put everything I feel and have and am going through into words.. especially the relationship part and reading this just hit me. I have been single for 4 years now and have pushed away so many amazing people due to feeling “claustrophobic” When now I realize it wasnt that .. and it was soley because I always felt busy..and I always felt busy even when I wasnt because of adderall..It has been 2 weeks since I am off it.
    It makes me upset that I have missed out on certain things I have probably would have done different

  198. kristine says:

    and what if you are not dating someone or dont have anyone to lean on? 🙁 than what?
    Mike do you have a facebook?

  199. Mike says:

    @Kristine – I know this sounds sadistic, but if you’re not dating somebody when you quit then you are (IMHO) actually kind of better off. This is a very solitary battle that few people outside yourself are capable of understanding. Although it might be nice to have some super-supportive significant other right now, anything less than an angel is just going to cause you more stress. Better to face your demons on your own, without having to worry about dragging down a relationship.

  200. Dan says:

    I’m glad I discovered this website early on in my addiction. I have been abusing adderall for several months now. I quit cold turkey a few days ago and have been feeling the withdrawal symptoms super strong. Huge depression and a feeling of worthlessness. No energy or drive. This is bad because it’s a huge turning point in my life.

    I just graduated from grad school with a MS degree in computer engineering. I quit last thursday, after I had already set up meetings for several interviews this week. I am now worried I will not do well at all, as I am nervous about meeting people and trying to prove myself to them to get the job. If I could just take one more pill on the interview day, I feel I could get by. But I’m not going to, and I’m worried I won’t get the job. Any advice on how to cope would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks

  201. Mike says:

    Hi Dan,

    I have several points of good news for you….

    1. You’ve only been abusing it for several months. I know this seems bad to you, but you’re in MUCH better shape than you would be if you had been abusing for most of your college career. You were able to get through high school, undergrad, and half of grad school without abusing Adderall. That means you have a substantial foundation of sobriety to return yourself too. You were already very accustomed to figuring out how to get work done without Adderall binges, and now it’s just a matter of going back to that.

    Compared to many of the stories you read on this site, your recovery period will be much shorter.

    2. The brunt of your work is behind you. You’ve got the degree. From here on out you have the opportunity to recover and reinvent yourself without risking your education. You will always have that to build on, even if you blow a couple job interviews. Blowing a job interview is nothing by comparison. You can get lots more job interviews as you find your stride again.

    3. I’ve been a software developer for 8+ years, and in the corporate IT business for 14 years total (sigh). This includes the time before I was on Adderall, while I was on Adderall, and after I quit. In my experience, it’s the heads-down, highly -focused work that is most difficult after you quit Adderall. The really stressful, prssurized stuff. Like, say, troubleshooting an obscure problem in advanced code that you’ve never worked with before…on a deadline. Interviews, on the other hand, were always pretty easy for me, even after quitting Adderall.

    As bad as my depression ever got, as my opinion of myself might have been, and as bad as my work ability might have been at that moment….it never stopped me from being able to talk about work subjects with a reasonable amount of confidence.

    My point is that just because you might not feel like your old Adderall superman right now, you still know what you know, which is considerable if you have an MS.

    Adderall often strengthens the parts of you that are good at ignoring people and getting work done, but weakens the parts of you that are good at interacting with other people. So now that you’ve quit Adderall, you may feel under-confident because your work-ability is weakened, but your interpersonal skills might have been made stronger by quitting…and that’s exactly what you need for an interview. You don’t need Adderall to be energetic or enthusiastic. That still exists in you; it just needs a worthy trigger. The interview setting is often just that trigger. Even if you’re still dragging ass and wallowing in depression all the way up the elevator of the building, your mood still might suddenly come together when you get into that interview room. It’s like your mind goes “OK, game time.”

    Try one or two of those interviews without Adderall and see how they go. You might surprise yourself. If you have passion for the subject, let it show through. As somebody who’s been a part of many hiring decisions in the IT world: If I have to choose between two candidates with relatively equal-sounding skills, I will pick the one who seems really passionate about the field over the robot with a decent-sounding resume. Enthusiasm goes a long way.

    Also research the hell out of the company and memorize all management bios before you get there, that way you’ll recognize the CTO if he walks into the room….and you won’t have to worry about remembering names (because you’ll already know them). 🙂

    If you try a couple interviews and you’re just dying without the pills, it’s not going to kill you to take a half to get through it. But I think you can do it without, and should definitely give it a shot at least once.

    Good luck! And congrats on your MS!

  202. Jared says:

    Alright, so everyone is sharing their story…I might as well share mine.

    I got on adderall in the Summer of 2008 after 1) an awful break-up dealing with a girlfriend addicted to Oxycontin and 2) my inability to work at a new job as a credit analyst. I had always been a social, outgoing person, so a relationship manager was my dream job at this bank. The only problem is, to get the relationship manager position, most people have to spend 2-3 years in the cube farm just number crunching…so yep, you guessed it – adderall made me a machine.

    At first, my eyes were opened! Everything I hated about sitting in a cubicle seemed to disappear, to be replaced with a sudden excitement for learning something new. I learned very fast. Productivity was astounding! Within months, I received a promotion in the department, and by May 2010, I had been promoted to a portfolio manager with the largest lending division in the bank. There wasn’t much difference between a credit analyst and a portfolio manager, except more direct customer contact. I was still pushing papers and analyzing portfolios, which is still what I’m doing today.

    Now for the bad – About 3 weeks ago, my girlfriend, who I care for and love deeply, split up after 9 months. It all happened because of a trivial argument that made me throw a tantrum. It was one of those, “fine then, I guess we just need a break!”…”good, I guess we do!”…then a few days later, “baby, I’m so sorry…I shouldn’t have gotten that upset.” But this time – it didn’t work. She was done.

    So, after doing A LOT of praying and soul-searching, I realized what made me become impatient, apathetic towards her feelings, irritable, and always stressed out. Yep – adderall. What had built my success in the workforce was also the cause of the demise of the relationship with the love of my life. I feel that I have never paid a greater penalty.

    I made the decision to get off adderall one week after the break-up, right after the search to regain my soul. The first few days were extremely hard. I couldn’t focus at work. Time would nearly stand still…but after a couple more days, it was a lot easier. I had never abused the drug..I always had extras when it was time for a refill, and that may be why it was a little bit easier to get off of it (I was prescribed 60mg a day, but usually only took 40mg).

    So far its been two weeks solid. I have never felt better (well, besides the mild depression from dealing with the break-up, but I’m coping). I’ve definitely been more physically active; I run nearly everyday…like its my alternate “drug”…but it gives me time to clear my mind. I’ve also dropped a few pounds because I’ve been more active. It’s like the old me is back. On the mediciation, I used to have this scowl with my eyebrows, like I was intensely studying everything around me – be it conversations, architecture, people…just whatever. But now, its like the scowl is gone, and I can finally relax. My mind has been freed.

    I’ll leave you with this – This daily devotional hit home today and really choked me up.
    ___________________________________________________________________
    In Due Season
    by Joyce Meyer – posted September 02, 2011

    And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.
    —Galatians 6:9 NKJV

    “Due season” is God’s season, not ours. We are in a hurry, God isn’t. He takes time to do things right—He lays a solid foundation before He attempts to build a building. We are God’s building under construction. He is the Master Builder, and He knows what He is doing. We may not know what He is doing, but He does, and that will have to be good enough. We may not always know, but we can be satisfied to know the One who knows.

    God’s timing seems to be His own little secret. The Bible promises us that He will never be late, but I have also discovered that He is usually not early. It seems that He takes every available opportunity to develop the fruit of patience in us. Patience is a fruit of the Spirit that grows under trial.

    Developed potential without character does not glorify God. If we were to become a huge success and yet be harsh with people—that would not be pleasing to the Lord. Therefore, if we get ahead of ourselves in one area, He gently but firmly blocks our progress in that area until the other ones catch up.

    Lord, thank You for Your patience with me. I want everything now, but You are building my life with eternity in mind. I don’t understand everything You’re doing, but I trust You. Amen.
    ___________________________________________________________________

    May God bless you Mike…thank you so much for this site. God has a special place for you in heaven. You have touched so many lives for the good.

  203. Jeremy says:

    Does ne1 know how long it usually take to not think about adderall every second when trying to quit??

  204. Brittany says:

    Hey, all…these stories are freaking breaking my heart. Does anyone on this site actually have ADD? I started researching this on a whim today, because I had to do an assignment on my childhood memories of education. I was diagnosed with ADD at ten, and fought my parents and doctors over Adderall and Strattera for years. I hated taking it. I associated that little blue pill with being ‘different’ in a negative sense; I was also on a higher dosage back then, and was prescribed XR instead of IR. Now, I am a single mom with a two-year-old son. I feed us both and pay our rent by working a steady job in the evenings, and I’m also a part-time college student. I took 15 mg of AdderallXR for four steady years- with frequent breaks when I forgot to take it- but quit cold turkey the day after I found out I was pregnant, as it can have negative side effects on an unborn child. Granted, there was a definite loss of concentration (the static chatter in my head increased, I had difficulty sitting still again, I was extremely antisocial and had a lot of trouble maintaining focused attention) but I had no physical withdrawal symptoms; I’m not sure those apply, if you truly have ADD and are using it for the correct reasons. I currently split all the pills my doctor prescribes me in half, taking the smallest possible dosage every five or so hours during the week (5 mg) and even then sometimes I will choose not to take them and just deal with my inattentive natural self, because something about the drug still scares me a little. As far as weight loss goes, I am 5’3 and a half and 108 lbs; but my weight still fluctuates according to the moon cycle (heh)even when I am taking Adderall, and the only reason it ever drops below that is stress and/or lack of grocery money. The only thing this drug really enhances is your attention span and your commitment to getting a job done; it organizes your thoughts. It doesn’t make you actively love a subject you normally hate, or make you a ‘better’ person, though maybe more of a patient one. I don’t feel like my personality alters drastically at all, really…but perhaps that is because I’m not downing 60 mg a day? I don’t know. These stories make me really sad, though. I wish this stuff wasn’t so easy to come by. I would go out and research ADD thoroughly before swallowing a physician’s recommendation, you guys… you are the only one who can truly determine whether or not you need help of this sort, or if you’re misusing it. It’s a feeling in your gut. When I skip a dose, I end up running my fingers over every available surface in front of me at work to compare textures, talking to myself in public and wandering away from any activity that requires more than fifteen minutes of concentration. I don’t mind this at certain times, but adult life quickly becomes more overwhelming than it needs to be when you realize that instead of listening to a customer at work, you’ve been wondering randomly if we’ll ever come up with a device to suck pain out of overstretched tendons. Reuptake inhibitors can make your life hell, if you don’t really need them. But if you do, then just use your head. Take only what you’re prescribed, less if you can manage it. Don’t double your dose for a paper or any other reason. Keep it even. Good luck.

  205. baidu456 says:

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  206. Dustin says:

    Hello all,

    I am currently 43 days clean from adderall. I was taking anywhere from 5 to 15 mg of IR per day. The challenge has been nothing short of daunting. I have one more year of grad school left and since school has started back I have thought about going back to the doctor to get a prescrition FREQUENTLY. Nevertheless, I know I can’t take the crap for life, and I don’t want to have to go through the first few weeks of recovery again. I couldn’t start a new career and have to deal with what I have had to deal with, so timing is key right now.

    I did not abuse adderall but I did drink quite a bit of caffeine on it. My productivity has slowed down tremendously. And unfortunately, I had to quit drinking caffeine because the caffeine was giving me headaches. I have been experiencing intermittent bouts of depression and my head has this weird feeling that comes and goes with differing degrees of severity. However, the most challenging part of my recovery at this point is that I am tired MOST of the time. I am sleeping 8-10 hours a night, and sometimes I am taking a midday nap. I cut back on my school hours this semester and I am taking a vitamin regimen that includes folic acid, magnesium, vitamin b12, fish oil, mulitivitamin, panax ginseng, and vitamin C. I feel a LITTLE bit better, but OVERALL, my recovery thus far has been very difficult. I an an avid runner but I don’t even get the runners high I once did. I have a strong faith in God and I know that EVENTUALLY this is going to get better. However, in the mean time, I am having to learn how to live all over again. Any suggestions for me would be really helpful. What did you guys do to combat the lethargy and fatigue?

  207. Mike says:

    Hi Dustin!

    It’s normal to feel like you’re having to learn how to live all over again. That’s pretty much what you’re doing. Same goes for frequent bouts of depression and low energy levels: all pretty standard for quitting Adderall. It does get better if you keep creatively working at it. Your energy levels will go up naturally as you fix the depression, just as the depression will lift as your energy levels go up. Your two particular problems are very tied to each other, even though you have to address them individually.

    You have to fight each problem on its own in ways you might not have tried before. Depression, in particular, can be tricky to solve, but the path to solving it can be really healthy and bring lots of good change into your life. Always remember: A success per day keeps the depression at bay.

    As for the energy levels: Have you tried coffee since quitting Adderall? I know you said that caffeine was giving you headaches towards the end of your time on Adderall, but what about now? If you can find a way around the caffeine headaches (try eating), then I would suggest coffee in the morning and fruit in the afternoon. In my case, my morning coffee takes me to lunch, lunch takes me to mid-afternoon, then I have an apple with peanut butter around 3pm and that takes me to 5pm. I’m also able to sustain my energy levels by stuffing my face with a bunch of sugary crap and soft drinks all day, but that leaves me feeling like crap at the end of the day.

    You’re on the right track with the vitamins too. Keep up with that.

    Anyhow, good luck. Come back and let everybody know how you’re doing!

  208. Johnny says:

    Hey guys… I posted a comment about a month ago. I stopped checking back in because I failed and quitting. I just wasn’t getting anything done, so I made the decision to start back up… and then I started binging hard, taking an average of 100 mg per day (and up to 180 – 200 per day), until I ran out. So now, here I go again… Day number 4 without Adderall… and MAN do I feel depressed. No promises here, but I’m going to give this another try.

    I just want to say good luck to all of you guys… It’s not easy an easy thing to do, and reading your stories is what keeps me going.

    johnnyroscoe@live.com (just in case anyone needs to send an email or something?) Or just to talk… I’m available.

  209. Johnny says:

    Sorry guys, I really should have proof-read my last message.

  210. Johnny says:

    Man, I really hate to flood this wall… but I just have to say thank you to “A Friend” who replied to my post on August 5, 2011 at 2:50 pm. I truly appreciate your words of encouragement, and I have re-read your advice numerous times. It’s so comforting to see people, such as yourself, spreading love and so graciously offering support. Thank you.

    -Johnny

  211. Mike says:

    @Johnny – Good luck this time! If you can make it 30 days, you’ll be through the worst of it. I know this may sound impossible, but the first phase of quitting is not about getting something done despite no Adderall, it’s about accepting the fact that you’re NOT going to get anything done until you’re past withdrawal….and figuring out how to make your life take the hit without too much damage.

    Phase 2 is about figuring out how to work again. Phase 1 is just pulling yourself out of bed for at least 6 hours a day. :-p

    Happy quitting. You got this. Post updates!

  212. Johnny says:

    Thanks again, Mike, for the continued encouragement. One phase at a time… got it. You’re the best!

  213. Dustin says:

    Hey Johhny,

    I am nearly two months into my recovery from adderall. The depression definitely gets better. Do anything you can to make it the first thirty days.

  214. Johnny says:

    Thank you, Dustin! I’m now on day 10 of being Addy-free, and feeling MUCH better already. I have regained a fairly normal appetite, am starting to have a bit more energy, and the depressions symptoms have definitely decreased. I still haven’t been as productive as I would like to be, but earlier today I created a fairly ambitious (given the circumstances) “to-do list” that I plan on knocking out before the day’s end. I’m feeling pretty optimistic! Thanks again for the words of encouragement!

  215. Johnny says:

    Hey guys…. as of yesterday, I’ve been Adderall-free for two weeks! I know it’s 3:30 AM, but I promise I really am clean. I am no longer experiencing any of the withdrawal symptoms, and I believe that my mind and body feel pretty much how they used to (before I ever discovered Adderall).

    Today was the first day that I’ve been even somewhat productive, but that’s okay. I’m pretty sure that it was all in my head, that I’m incapable of get anything done without Adderall… and therefore couldn’t get myself to even start anything, before today. Turns out, I was just being a big fat baby.. because today I forced myself to start a few tasks, and I was even MORE productive than I when I am on Adderall… probably because I wasn’t get distracted with any ridiculous side-tasks, and didn’t waste hours perfecting tiny details that don’t even really matter. What I DID do, is accomplish my to-do list… and THEN some. I’ve got to be honest though, I am still flirting with the idea of refilling my bottle… and I don’t know why.

    I’m so excited that I am now starting to believe in my ability to function without Adderall. I can’t wait to wake up tomorrow and make even more progress. =)

  216. Dustin says:

    Hello all,
    Today is my 75th day clean from adderall. I must admit, that the first several weeks were nothing short of daunting. However, I am becoming acquainted with the person I used to be. Do not even try to accomplish the same amount of work you were accomplishing on adderall. This will inevitably lead to ultimate failure. I dropped down from over full-time in graduate school to simply full-time. This was the best decision I have ever made. There is no way I could have made it past the milestone to date if I had taken that extra class. I know longer feel like my health is failing!!!!!! My anxiety is now very manageable. I have a new found adderall-free ability to relax! I get out of the house more because I do not feel like I am being held hostage to completing endless amounts of tasks. I have already received two words of affirmation that I am doing much better. I had no idea how I came across on that stuff, but apparently I appeared to some people to be jacked up on something! That is the thing; adderall distorts your self-perception to a significant degree. I am so thankful to God to be back in reality and to be given a chance at a second lease on life!

  217. Johnny says:

    Way to go Dustin! I’m in the same boat as you, and have now been clean for 5 weeks.

    “I have a new found adderall-free ability to relax! I get out of the house more because I do not feel like I am being held hostage to completing endless amounts of tasks.”

    I could not have said it better myself. Oh and one more quote from you that I absolutely love because it is SO spot on:

    “I had no idea how I came across on that stuff, but apparently I appeared to some people to be jacked up on something! That is the thing; adderall distorts your self-perception to a significant degree. I am so thankful to God to be back in reality and to be given a chance at a second lease on life!”

    I do realize that most of my post is simply a repeat of yours… but just wanted to let you know that I completely relate to everything you wrote. Cheers, brother!

    -Johnny

  218. Dustin says:

    Hey Johhny,

    Congragulations on 5 and a half weeks. We are in this together. It is incredibly hard, but I have full confidence that this new journey is going to pay off big time! I am now completing more work off adderall than I ever envisioned possible. However, I am consciously accepting my limitations. I gain great solace in knowing that my decision to go off adderall was God’s will. Considering this, I know that he will never leave me hanging.

    Blessings,

    Thanks for the reply

    –Dustin

  219. Dustin says:

    141 days clean from adderall! I must say that today is the best day of my life thus far. I never imagined that I would be as fully adjusted to life as I am now (in this short of time). I have to admit–it has been nothing short of the grace of God that has seen me through! I no longer think about adderall on a daily basis. This is a new milestone. I have written term papers. I have done in depth language analysis. I did not think any of this was possible without adderall, BUT IT WAS! I underestimated myself, and I underestimated God. The most precious gift I have received from quitting adderall is the new found experience I have to help others when they reach out.

    God bless you all,

    Dustin

  220. Robyn says:

    Hi & thank you everyone for sharing your stories of hope! I am 35 years old and have been on adderall for almost 4 years. I have known I need to quit for a while, but now that I’m down to 8 pills & 2 weeks until my next prescription can be filled, I know God is telling me the time is now. I am scared to death, but hopeful because I know God is with me. I would appreciate your prayers, if any of you are so inclined. Thank you, Mike for being a gatherer of hope!

  221. Vanna says:

    It is almost 6 in the morning and I’m still wide awake from my mistimed adderall dose. I ran out of my January prescription less than 2 weeks into the New Year. Not only did I finally have to face my addiction that I would not let myself acknowledge, I was terrified for myself. I put myself in a predicament where I was forced to cold turkey quit adderall. TRAINWRECK. The first few days I felt nothing more than lazy, crazy, and fat. I cried a lot and slept more than I probably had in the entire year of 2011. Key words in all of this is “felt something”. Something I hadn’t done in a really long time. The adderall allowed me one emotion: Hate. After 5 days of awful withdrawal and eating my fridge to the point of empty, semi- manageable withdrawal began. I actually was able to convince myself to shower and maybe even make the bed. (Dream big… I know) I started to smile; something that sadly had been faked for years. My boyfriend told me my skin looked beautiful. It actually glowed. This was very important for me to hear as I picked up compulsive skin picking years before. I hadn’t felt any other emotion but hate, anger, and sadness for years. I felt like a zombie. I faked emotions. Because I couldn’t remember how the other emotions actually felt like. And within 2.5 weeks, the longest I had gone not taking adderall in 6 years, momentarily, I got to feel what happiness really felt like.

    February came, as did, my opportunity for a new refill. I was very foggy headed, avoiding a social life, but, I was on a path to being able to get by without adderall. I blew it. I picked up the adderall prescription and the pharmaceutical monster awoke. I became immediately focused, distant from my boyfriend, angered by everything he said or did, and really, really, mean. I was relieved to be able to form sentences and have the courage to call my mother and hold a phone conversation with her. My appetite was suppressed, but, it killed my sex drive. The tradeoffs didn’t seem fair. But, I still picked the pill over it all. I HATED myself for taking that first pill. My boyfriend immediately notice a significant change in me. He told me that I really needed to get off of that medicine. I knew he was right, but, I was not going to admit it. In fact, that “out of line” opinion set me off. HOW DARE HE?!!!!! That pill made me despise him. I was disgusted by the sight of him walking in the door after work.

    With all this being said, I sit in a deep depression, emotion-less. I came across this site and it really got to me. I have decided to wean myself from this awful shit. At 22, I handed my life over to a pill. This site saved my life. I want to thank all of you for your posts. I see people going through the same things and feeling the same way, survive, and strive on here. I don’t feel so alone and crazy now. I really can’t thank all of you enough for sharing your experiences and stories. I’m giving myself the opportunity to actually live my life as myself and not a pharmaceutical byproduct. I have only you people to thank for this. I’m sure my post is scattered, I was shaking with relief while typing, and I know if I go back and reread, I’ll be up for another hour. haha.

    ALSO, thank you Mike. I realize that I don’t know you, I will probably never meet you, but, I feel like you pulled me out of burning building. I will be forever indebted to you. It takes a really special person to keep something like this going. I’m being very genuine when I say that I owe my life to you. Thank you again.

    Wish me luck. <3

    -Vanna

  222. Mike says:

    @Vanna – Thanks so much for your comment! Those mistimed doses are where it all starts to go bad, aren’t they? You can rationalize and glorify Adderall all you want during the workday, but when those early birds start chriping at 5am and you’re still violently tossing and turning in bed, trying to sleep even an hour before the next day begins, your head full of a million speed-powered thoughts…that’s a time when even the most committed Adderall user will wish he had taken a wee bit less.

    I cannot stress enough how crucial it is to recognize the return of your emotional range after quitting. The fact that you’ve done that — that you’ve perceived a greater capacity for happiness — will take you far in your quitting process. The worst moments of quitting Adderall often involve unfair comparisons of your on-Adderall life to your after-Adderall life. You compare how you felt on your best Adderall day to how you feel melted into the couch during withdrawal, and the math starts to come out in favor of going back on Adderall…and then you recall those small, deep happinesses you’ve felt a few times since quitting…the scale rebalances, and you push ahead.

    I’m glad your boyfriend has seen the Jekyll & Hide shift too. That means he’ll be a huge ally in your battle to quit, because he’s seen the good that can come of it. Where others might not be able to understand what you’re doing, he’ll be able to point out your progress and remind you of your reasons.

    Anyhow, very best of luck quitting. And I’m glad you like the site!

  223. Molly says:

    This has been so helpful to find. I’ve really enjoyed reading everyone’s journey and it felt great to have people you can relate to, esp now to feeling more lazy. I am such a ‘naturalist’ am a super healthy eater, was a hardcore workout type of person. I started adderall slowly in grad school and then daily for the last year, so its been 4 years in my life, but a year at 30 mlg.

    I don’t sleep anymore, everything seems hard to accomplish even on the meds, my skin broke out (which affects my career), I never answer my phone (and I am 100% extrovert). My life literally has began to fall apart in short.

    My questions/concerns/thoughts in wanting to quit is that I don’t have an office job. I am a performer and director, so I am really worried what would happen with the withdrawl process. Do I need to wait to have a window of time? I am currently in my last week of production of the show I am acting in, and about 6 weeks away from the show I am directing. I can’t skip, zone out or just show up, like some people mentioned with their jobs. Would this require me to take ‘a vacation’? Would people recommend treatment somewhere-I’ve seen all different responses. I, of course, am terrified of weight gain, and find that as one of the big reasons to not wanting to quit. (I did read people’s responses about increase exercise).

    Certain things have been so easy with the drug, others now so hard. It seems like an easy choice to quit, but then its not at all, and really like how people said you need to be 100% percent prepared.

    Thanks to whoever took the time to write this and thanks to all you awesome people who have written over the years about it.

  224. Anonymous says:

    I started taking vyvance about a year and a half ago, due to adhd. It was great at first, I felt I wasn’t so socially aquard with people, I loved my job. I could get things done, life was great. …or so I thought. Two weeks after taking this drug I started getting horrible anxiety, panicking about everything started questioning about my life, just an awful uncomfortable feeling hit me. So I went to my psychiatrist, and he prescribed me 75 mg of adderall. Once again, it was great at first, and then it really hit me. I was turning into a nutcase, I was suspicious of everyone, I would spend hours on one thing, I was paranoid, I believed the world was after me. It was awful, I was hearing things, I believed the radio was talking to me, and the t.v. It was just horrible. I would waste hours on being paranoid. So I got my dose lowered, I stopped being paranoid, but my body was becoming dependant on it. I felt I could not get anything done without this drug, my mood swings were terrible. I would think of everything I had to do, but I wouldn’t do it. I stopped hanging out with friends, I stopped laughing, everything I once loved doing I stopped. A huge rush of depression would come over me, I would cry for hours. I would become helpless in a sence. I couldn’t do anything without this stupid drug. Finnaly my boyfriend told me I had to quit, he dumped all my pills down the toilet and told me he didn’t like who I had become, and neither have I. I’m on day 4 without this drug, and it’s rough, but I’m starting to come of my shell and share my story. Please, if you are considering being on this mind altering drug, don’t do it. You will get so sucked in and it’s hell, it’s hell on it, and it’s hell getting off of it. Your mind gets so corrupted with horrible thoughts, and constant wonders. I don’t even know how to explain it, but trust me, adderall should be off the market, I don’t understand how psychiatrist dont know this by now!

  225. Anonymous says:

    READ THIS: How to go cold turkey without fatigue:

    -First off, let me say I was addicted to 120mg rapid release adderral (4x30mg per day) for 14 months straight.

    -I tried going cold turkey with no help from a doctor, and each time, lasting max 7 days, I was a sleepy depressed mess and couldn’t do much but slump on and off the couch to make a fruit smoothie then back to sleep.

    -Why so tired? When we are addicted to amphetamines, we almost all experience “adrenal fatigue” which results in an out of balance level of “cortisol” (a neurotransmitter responsible for balancing like EVERYTHING and allowing you to feel energized.)

    When a person like myself had been abusing adderral for so long day after day, the adrenal glands become “shot” (quoting my doctor describing my cortisol chart after a saliva test I took at 4 points in the day).

    So you feel so tired and miserable those 4-7 days you are waiting to refill your prescription, for three reasons:

    -Low Cortisol levels (normal people wake up with their highest level, and it diminishes during the day, when on adderral you wake up with near none, and come bed time you have too much)

    -Low seratonin levels (from abusing the drug, this can be raised with cardio exercise with an elevated heart rate above 160 for 25-35 minutes, supplementing with over-the-counter 5-HTP, as well as eating loads of raw and organic fruits and vegetables.)

    -Anxiety that you won’t get more drugs (this caused me depression always wondering how long I would have to endure until the next refill).

    7 days ago I went cold turkey from 120mg / day for 14 months.

    I was prescribed “hydrocortisone” (natural non stimulant, non narcotic) which I take 10mg around 8am and another 10mg around 11am.

    This raises my cortisol for the whole day, thus alleviating me from the typical adderral crash and fatigue.

    Stop smoking pot during the day. This only makes recovery more difficult, save it for night time if you prefer to use it as an anxiety reliever.

    2 hours prior to bed I take 2,000mg of “seriphose” (natural, non narcotic, lowers stress and most importantly, lowers cortisol almost completely, to get your brain back to this natural rhythm, and to allow 9 hours clean sleep).

    Thats it!

    I swear on my life, 4 times in the past I tried to quit, and it was very bad for me and my girlfriend and all my employees. This time, I went cold turkey in one day, started the hydrocortisone / seriphose regimen THAT day, and I literally have had ZERO withdrawal symptoms.

    …maybe I need an extra hour or two sleep than normal (cause on stimulants I slept < 6 hours per night) but that's it! I feel like my true self again. I'm still funny, in fact many people say I've gotten whittier over the last 7 days (SOBER!) 😀 and also, being a musician and artist, I feared these areas of life would suffer. So far it's been the opposite! I hear my drum and guitar tracks from when I was medicated, and they don't sound near as clean and subtly amazing as they do now, sober, with healthy cortisol levels.

    This hydrocortisone / seriphose treatment is temporary, to allow the adrenal glands time to "take a break" so they can heal. My "Natropathic" doctor said to expect about three months of decreasing doses until I will be all natural and not need any medicinal help.

    So, I write this elaborate post because;
    I was skinny, I looked younger than 4 years ago somehow, my freaking d*ck wasn't working haha (been having fantastic sex the last 7 days straight sober) and I was near suicide, not to mention daily stomach aches which I never admitted were from the adderral. All those symptoms were gone in one day when I (here is the key) STOPPED TAKING STIMULANTS COMPLETELY, no "stepping down" no "weening", that NEVER worked. Just stop it. Quit that shit, today. Get some natural help to RAISE YOUR CORTISOL so you are not fatigued and depressed.

    I feel sooooo amazing, tears of Joy ski down my cheeks celebrating each new day that I realize I am drug free. It's a sustainable happiness that pervades any and all temporary pleasure from adderral.

    ALSO, my add is LESS prevalent off my meds haha! The stims made me more ADD after a while!

    It's so backwards it's hilarious and tragic at the same time ha.

    Please, believe me, I am JahSun, I have been in the depths of adderral hell, and I PROMISE you,
    workout, eat VERY healthy, drink only water, raise your cortisol with some natural supplements (see a natural doctor who does not favor pharms) and you will be free of this slavery in LESS THAN ONE WEEK.

    Be well, I love you, you can do it! I never thought I could, so please just have faith, IT IS NOT THAT BAD, IN FACT IT'S BEAUTIFUL, LIBERATING, AND WILL MAKE YOU SO MUCH BETTER IN EVERY AREA OF LIFE!

    LOVE LOVE LOVE! 😀

    I seriously love and support you, do it, dump the pills now!

    -JGally, "Jahsun"

    you can email me at jahsun711@gmail.com for q's or advice.

    Be free!~

  226. broken mom says:

    WOW! I am so amazed to have actually found a site that has literally made me feel like i belong here! I have not felt like i belong anywhere for quite sometime now. Thank you to everyone who has been brave enough to post here and admit your fear for yall are the ones who have touched me the most.
    PLEASE HELP ME
    I am a mother of a 3 year old boy and 5 year old girl, both of which i recieve no help with. I have been focusing on how to get through the day rather than enjoying the day for nearly 4 years now. I had my daughter with a con man who disappeared when she was 2 months old along with our car and my heart leaving me to take care of a baby at 21 on my own with the 50,000 dollars worth of debt from stealing all of my credit cards and maxing them out.
    i was a christian girl raised by a single mom whome tought me all of the basics of life and i went out into the world with a great background.i never smoked drank and definitly never touched a drug, that is until i was lost in this world of a rediculous amount of responsibilities and a broken heart with a beautiful yet screaming baby.
    i then started smoking dope and drinking beer on a daily basis however i still managed to provide a healthy home and a good job where i waited tables. i met alot of amazing people at this job with the exception of an old lover.I was so desperate to find a soulmate and a father for my beautiful baby that i went with the familure and started seeing the guy who once broke my heart as well
    He was always good to my daughter, However he always knew how to make me fall to the ground by his verbal abuse, lack of respect for me and negativity towards everyone in my life. this realtionship went from bad to worse very quickly. after getting back on my feet and just dating him, i was STUPID enough to buy a home and allow him to live with me with only a verbal agreement that he pay for half. HA , BIGGEST MISTEAK. after only 6 days of moving in the house we concieved our son AND THEN A MONTH LATER HE PROPOSES, and within a week He brought methadone into my home , He started going to a clinic around here and after a year of fighting over it and watching him sit on the couch day after day as i work while raising a daughter as well as being pregnant THE second love of my life was born. please keep in mind as you read this that i love my children more than life itself which is why i am ready to start my path of recovery, However this is an even harder road than for some because after working two jobs i dont get to come home and detox or sleep, i have my non stop job raising my two kids aloneM whome are both at the age of needing all of my attention so please HELP ME IF YOU CAN. i need advise
    Unfortunatly, Here i am suffering from withdrawls due to finally standing my ground and divorcing my husband . HE KNOWS HE IS THE ONE WHO HAS BROUGHT BOTH METHADONE AND ADDERALL INTO MY LIFE AND ALSO KNOWS THAT DESPITE THE FINANCIAL AND EMOTINAL AND DRUG AND VERBAL ABUSE THAT HE HAS ALSO BEEN ABUSING ME FOR THE LAST THREE YEARS.
    I KNOW that i have always been a pretty girl with a beautiful smile and iv always been the type to rub off on people.
    LATELY IV NOTICED MY TEETH HAVE SHIFTED AND ARE BREAKING ALL THE TIME AND IM TO EMBARISSED TO SMILE. SMOKING A PACK A DAY ISNT HELPING MY HEALTH OR TEETH EITHER but since i lost my house and my husband and my job only 6 months ago after having it all for 3 years im now stuck in this phase of self pitty and emotinal chaoz.
    my x wouldnt work but he would bring ADDERALL HOME FOR ME TO TAKE AND HAVE THE ENERGY TO DO ALL THE WORK DAILY THAT WAS NEEDED. ALSO AFTER THE BEATINGS HE WOULD BRING ME METHADONE TO EASE MY PAIN.
    so now here i am realizing that the only reason iv stayed with him the last year was merely so i dont have to go through withdrawls. IM AFRAID OUT OF MY MIND but i have been going to church again lately and i know God has just been waiting for me to renew my faith and let the demons go. But now what? who can help me work 10hours and come home to cook dinner and clean the dishes and bathe the kids and wash the clothes and actually have time for self. i know now that i have pushed friends and family and basically everyone away so i wouldnt be that depressing person and so people couldnt tell how bad i was hurting so the only times i would allow them to see me was while taking an add. iv never taken more than 20 mg a day and never more than 15 mg of methadone but i still know iv been taken the above for two years daily and now that i wont allow my x to controll me, i am lost. i dont know who i am anymore. PLEASE HELP

    AS YOU CAN SEE MY PAIN AND EMOTIONS ARE REAL YET THEY ARE ALL OVER THE PLACE. MY THOUGHTS, FEARS, AND PAIN ARE A CONSTANT WEIGHT ON MY SHOLDERS AND ITS VERY HARD TO RECOGNIZE IF IM HAPPY OR IN DENIAL. THIS DRUG HAS BEEN A QUICK FIX FOR 2 YEARS AND NOW ITS A LIFELONG DEMON I WILL ALWAYS HAVE TO FIGHT. I JUST WANT TO FIND A WAY TO ACCEPT IT AND EVENTUALLY HEAL FROM ALL OF THIS SO I CAN LEAD A HEALTHY NORMAL LIFE, FOR MY CHILDREN AND MYSELF.

  227. Lauren says:

    I was prescribed adderall XR when I was 14 years old after I was diagnosed with ADD. During that time, I was very depressed, and there was a lot going on in my home life that I couldn’t focus on anything. I was an impulsive eater, I didn’t care about school, and when I got adderall in my hands, I felt like it was my savior. I didn’t have an appetite, I went from failing school to making straight A’s, and I changed so much during those initial years that I lost sight of what I had once loved so much.

    Five years later now, I am 20, and I can’t live without adderall. I crave that high in the morning, I have become controlled by this substance, and whenever I go off it, I am back to where I was before I started: an angst-ridden, depressed, impulsive teenager, and I can’t do anything. I feel so depressed and worthless that I want to die. The longest I have been without adderall was about 8 days, in which I was having constant anxiety attacks, feeling overly tired all the time, and my mind was being flushed with memories I had suppressed because of adderall.

    I don’t know how to quit. I am out of adderall again, and I have a week until I can get my script filled. I drink alcohol now constantly after the adderall come-down. I have become dependent on two substances. I am a wreck. I don’t know where to turn because people really do not understand why I can’t just stop.

    I don’t want to miss out anymore on life. I want to be able to be me, whomever that might be.

  228. James says:

    I had been taking adderall since I was 8,(im 21 now) I quit taking adderall in Feb. Sadly, I quit suddenly and went cold turkey. the past 4 months have been hell on earth. And “desolate” describes me and my life as of late. Though, I must say I was losing all hope until yesterday while I was sitting alone feeling depressed thinking, this will never go away.

    I was having what one could call a breakdown until I just googled “had been taking adderall for 10+ years and quit” and somehow found this site.
    I must say, this site not only opened my eyes to the fact I’m not so alone in the world, it may have also giving me that push to keep going and not give up… if you know what I mean.

    For that, I thank the creator of said sight, and EVERYONE who’s comments I’ve read through.

    Its refreshing To know I’m not as crazy as I’ve always thought… but I’m still saddened at people’s ignorance to what we are all going through.
    Friends and Family don’t understand, and some don’t try to.

    And again sadly, I found this site 4 months AFTER I quit…
    which is 4 months too late for some relationships and friendships.

    For anyone in a similar situation, I will tell you this.

    I CAN see the light at the end of the tunnel.

    It just takes time, it is a struggle. But You, him above, her below, and any that read this.
    You are NOT alone.
    and if you are like me, You don’t have to “hide” anymore.
    If you feel that need to be in isolation or desolate… you can Find solace on Quitting Adderall.

    Something you may read or someone you may talk to on here WILL help immensely.

    Again, I thank you all.

    I thought I had lost my mind. You guys showed me it was really there the whole time.

  229. Elaine says:

    To anyone who is trying to quit
    I abused it for 2 years and saw my life spin out of control. But I must also say to all the abusers out there. There may be a reason why we do it. Because personally I was not happy before I started taking it. And I though this pill solved all my insecurities and internal struggles by numbing them.
    They say you must sink low in order to rise again. And low I sank. Lost my relationships, my job, barely graduated, lost my health and my desire to do anything.
    One day after feeling so guilty and desperate for having taken over 100 mg for the 5th day in a row and barely having gotten any sleep in 3 days I sat down with myself and thought “It’s not adderall I am abusing, I am abusing myself”. This little pill it just that: A little pill that I can crush, flush, throw and blow. The problem is not adderall. It’s me. I must start to treat myself a little nicer”.
    Don’t despair my friends, you will find the strength to quit. Everyone has it. When the time comes, you will know it. But remember, there’s more to abusing adderall. Question yourselves: “why am I doing it?”. It will answer you and show you how to proceed.

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  231. Tim says:

    After revisiting this site in the first time in about a year I now have a glimmer of hope. Thankyou all for you’re stories, it is such a relief to know I am not alone. I’ve battled with an addiction to adderall for the last 2 years, and have slowly watched as it has destroyed my relationships, career opportunities, emotions, and by all means what feels like my very soul. Who I use to describe as a charasmatic, personable, and enthusiastic person is gone. I started taking adderall my junior year of college to combat my social anxiety and depression. When I used Adderall I felt confident, able to socialize and to able to articulate myself much more readily. I also used adderall and alcohol in many presentations I had to give, and at social events. When things got bad in my relationship I turned to adderall and booze even more. When things were better I used less, but was never able to go more than a couple weeks without goin on a binge. After graduating from college last summer I decided to move in with several friends from back home. I started a job as a personal trainer at a local chiropractors office, was training for a boxing match, and was trying to maintain a long distance relationship with a girlfriend. I used adderall sporadically to try to juggle everything. I started getting anxious and paranoid at work. I went to a psyhiatrist and told her in all honesty about my abuse in the past. She prescribed me more! For the most part I took it as prescribed, 20 mg a day). I became increasingly anxious and paranoid at work, and the anxiety spread to every facet of my life. I became completely withdrawn from my roomates, and I started abusing lorazepam just to get some sleep. I had a nervous breakdown at work which lead me to quit and had a blowout with my girlfriend which ended our relationship. I quit everything cold turkey, including the antidepressant I was on. I went to a friend of the families, went to an addiction counselor, (who did not seem to take the abuse a seriously as I wanted him too), and started doing what I’ve always loved, exercising. I came back home, and continued an exercise regiment. I was working odd jobs, slowly increasing my workouts and looking for other jobs. I was still anxious and depressed, but it became much more manageble. I couldn’t stay clean though. I stopped working out for a week and had several addy and alcohol binges. I didn’t sleep for days. My world closed in around me, and as Elyse said in her post, it felt like something clicked. I checked myself into a psych unit where the Doctors prescribed me copious amounts of antipsychotic drugs and mood stabilizers, even without an exact diagnosis. My anxiety got worse, my blood pressure was through the roof, and It felt like I was having one consistent panic attack. My parents were able to revoke the involuntary status and bring me home. I got off the antipsychotics and the mood stabilizer, which seemed to leave me a little more clear headed. Now Every movement is a collasal effort. I can’t express the simplest of emotions to my loved ones, It takes me much longer to perform any cognitive or physical task. It took me well over 40 minutes to write what usually would have taken me 10. I can’t concentrate on the simplest of tasks. I’m paranoid that I can’t handle even a menial job, and most of my thinking is irrational. I made the mistake of making my suicidal thoughts known to my parents, who I am currently staying with. They are both ridden with depression and anxiety. I’m 30,000$ in debt, unemployed, and scared to death of what I’ve become and If I’ll ever get myself back. This sight has given me hope. Thankyou everyone for sharing your stories, and sorry for the rant

  232. […] Adderall after a scary incident Christmas morning of 2008. Which is described more in detail here and […]

  233. Kara says:

    Thank you so much for the message and website. I am 25 days sober of Adderall. It is rough. Very hard, and I can’t wait to feel better. But I know it will come. Without your website I would really feel much more depressed and lost than I already am.
    Thanks!

  234. Cameron says:

    I think there’s a balance to be found in all of this. As Mike said, taking Adderall is one extreme where you can become so focused that you pursue a career/life that isn’t right for you. This is unhealthy because you end up in a career that isn’t fulfilling. While I certainly don’t believe Adderall is the answer I think that you have to find something external to help you along.
    I believe that ADHD people need to medicate in a healthy way to be functional. Quitting Adderall alone isn’t enough. I’ve found a combination of caffeine/supplements along with exercise that works quite well for me. My brain is no longer as sluggish and I’m more engaged in what I love. It allows me to get through some of the boring tasks enough to be functional, but it doesn’t trick me into thinking I’m a left-brained, logical thinker. I won’t be going to school again to pursue something way out of left-field that isn’t me (hopefully). I have too much self-knowledge now. I’ m still creative.

    When I was on Adderall I quit writing songs, playing guitar and stopped putting energy into friendships. The side-effects were horrible and I had breakdowns when it wore off. I pursued a very difficult degree in Atmospheric Sciences and got through rigorous calculus classes that otherwise would’ve hindered my progress. I’m now stuck in a career that isn’t suited to my strengths and I have to get up at 4 AM for work. There is no creativity, independence or anything of that type. It isn’t a bad job for many people, but not right for me.

    I’m transitioning into a business that I’m going to do from home where I’m creating a sustainable product that allows me to design and use my imagination. Is it my life calling? I don’t know, but I’m trusting my instincts and going for something that is more right-brained. I’m moving into part-time work with my other gig with better hours. Again, I’m transitioning slowly and avoiding the bipolar/extreme decisions that I often made on adderall. That’s part of the problem with the drug, it robs you of your natural sensitivity/creativity.

    ok, back to what I was talking about before…If I weren’t to drink caffeine and take this supplement I would wake up a zombie like I did all the way through high school. That’s not an answer just as much as Adderall isn’t either. Feeling like a zombie sucks and over time you realize that you need some help. With an under active mind I end up self-doubting everything I do which is really not a fun way to live. You have to find something that is strong enough to help you focus and do things with some confidence and focus. You have to find something to enhance your passion without stifling it. That’s where Adderall is so bad.

    When I was 25 I played in a band. While I was very happy I gave it up after 2 years because I doubted myself too much. Being unmedicated allowed me to be creative but prevented me from focusing to the level I needed. I went to another extreme when I went back on Adderall and became a different person along the way. At the time I hadn’t figured out how to balance my life with supplements/exercise. I’m not saying I have the key, but I feel like a more balanced person now.

    Here’s my conclusion. You have to be together on some level to do what you love. It takes some confidence, togetherness and some kind of healthy external trick to keep ME going. I’d love to think that you could reach inside and do it internally, but some of it has to involved some sort of external help IMO. There is a balance. That said, Adderall is bad news.

  235. Katelyn says:

    I am a 25 year old female. I used to be confident and driven and ambitious. I had goals and I was full of life. I was a cheerleader, homecoming queen, I had healthy relationships and I was close with my family. That stopped being me shortly after I began taking adderall. I took adderall every day for 5 years. In the last two years I was taking over 200 mg a day…yes 200 mg…every single day. I do not have ADHD. My use was purely recreational in the beginning and it didn’t take long for the fun and euphoria to turn into full blown addiction. I have been clean for 4 months now, from all substances, because if you’re a hopeless addict like me, that is simply the only way. I am now a sober member of alcoholics anonymous. The false sense of well being that adderall gave me in the beginning led me to alcohol dependence as well as many other substances and eventually to heroin. Of all the drugs I’ve done, adderall was by far the one that consumed me the most. I became psychotic in the end. I believed that I had a parasite under my skin. I would spend hours and hours in the bathroom using needles and tweezers to dig the “bugs” out of my face. When I was done, my face was covered in deep holes gushing blood. My skin is obviously permanently scarred today. Even that isn’t the worst of what the drug did to me. It dug holes throughout my entire personality. I’ve been clean for four months but every day is agony. I have no motivation, no happiness, no desire to do much of anything but lay in bed. I go through the motions of the day but I am only coasting right now. I honestly feel like I’m just hanging on for dear life, waiting for the damage to slowly repair itself. I am empty. I’m waiting for even a glimpse of myself to reappear and give me hope that the damage isn’t permanent. I go to meetings every day, I have a sponsor, I am doing the 12 steps, I pray, and I help others. When I tell my story, people are baffled by what adderall alone did to me. Most people think of adderall as something juvenile that teenagers abuse. Adderall is no joke and it horrifies me when I hear about young people, or anyone for that matter being prescribed. It disturbs me to people posting about how much it has changed their lives and they’re now able to do all these great things and accomplish so much. That was me. It was like my savior. It was a miracle drug. It creeps up on you like that and once it gets it’s grip on you, there’s pretty much no turning back. What I hope is that sharing my experience will deter at least one person from having to go through what I did and what I still am going through.

  236. Angela says:

    katelyn,
    Wow, that is a moving story. I too have struggled with adderall and am only three weeks off of my script. I remember the 5th was the scheduled refill day and I had already been off of them a week, only because I ran out. I was taking adderall & vyvanse, my doctor was prescribing both for me and had no idea that I was taking more and more. I now see a glimmer of who I am and I like it. You will too, in time. I am glad you are going to the meetings that will inspire many others on here.

  237. James says:

    I too feel like I can relate with Katlyn’s story- 2 posts up. Ive been in 4 drug treatment centers and I also can say that my drug of choice was adderall. It is a very decieving drug because you can (with effort) convince yourself that you need it and its really helping you- because after all its coming from a doctor and they give it to little kids so it must not be that bad. Its hard to do that with drugs like cocaine and heroin. I am a Christian though, so the deceiving part of adderall doesnt surprise me, as the devil is very deceiving and cunning himself and I believe is no doubt behind much of the adderall craze of the last couple decades.

    I have been off adderall for 44 days now. Its the 2nd longest for me in 3 years. Today I almost slipped up. I still have a couple scripts and have been out of work for a couple months until last week. I finally got a job and started panicking, thinking how in the world am I going to learn the new job without adderall- and how much better I would be if I got some pills in me and went into adderall-mode. I only have $20 bucks though yet still was thinking of using all the money to get about 15 pills out of the prescription. I dont get paid for two weeks and I would have trouble finding food and eating the next 2 weeks if I had done thins. Still I almost did it. My addict mind was telling me that it was okay because once I got the pills I wouldnt be hungry and could just not eat very much. This is sick and twisted thinking..The truth is that I will function much better on a stomach full of food rather than amphetamine pills. I thank my God Jesus Christ that I didn’t go back to taking adderall today.

  238. James says:

    I slipped up today and went back to using adderall for the first time in about a month-and-a-half. Probably need to stop being so hard on myself- this drug is not easy to quit. If anyone reads this and wants to say a quick prayer for me then I appreciate it.

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  241. Shannon says:

    First, I would like to say that I RARELY post comments on sites. However, I have been looking for a site like this and I just had to add a comment since reading the above comments, along with the article has helped me!
    Before I start I want to say thank you so much for posting this article!!
    I am 18 years old and have been taking Adderall for about 8 years…every day, 30mg, prescribed by a doctor. I loved how focused my life was, how organized I was, how I got good grades (always an A, sometimes a B), I loved how I always remembered things, and my weight healthy.
    Over the past 8 or so months I was considering coming off Adderall for several reasons:
    -I didn’t like being dependent on a drug every.day.
    -I didn’t like how I became all quiet and shy at a certain time of day then all of a sudden be me, who is silly and loud. I would honestly get nervous about people thinking I had different personalities when really is was my Adderall wearing off and my true self showing.
    -My friends like me better off of Adderall
    -I didn’t like how my heart rate would be abnormal at times. My doctor even had me get an EKG done for 48 hours because my heart rate was always around 115bpm. This made it difficult to actually exercise (HA, like I needed to exercise…)
    -I was concerned about what my health was really like on the inside of my body (since I could eat anytime I wanted without gaining any weight…even though I eat pretty healthy anyways…and since I did not exercise every day).
    So I made an appointment with my doctor, after researching on my own about coming off Adderall. She was actually supportive of my decision and gave me tips to get off Adderall (taking study breaks, exercising, eating healthy, studying at the library…) I am on day 29 of no Adderall (I think I can, I think I can….) and it has been a struggle!! My boyfriend is really the only reason why I am doing this because I (and he) like my real self better. He has so much confidence in me and his prayers and my God are getting me through this. My grades have dropped to a C, my time management is still a process…I have gained about 5 pounds and I find myself hungry more often. I am in my last semester for Nursing pre-req’s and I have so many placement exams and procedures I need to do before I apply for the Nursing RN program. Oh, another reason I wanted to get off Adderall is because I want to be a Nurse who is not dependent on a drug just so she can concentrate and remember how to do procedures. I don’t want to be a nurse who knows what she’s doing then all of a sudden her Adderall wears off and she’s too distracted to pay attention to what she’s doing…NO! I wanted to get that control in my life.
    I write all of this to encourage those who are on the same path as I am. I am praying for all of you who have taken this big step. I like to think of us as the most most self-disciplined people out there- those who can make a decision like this and change their life because they want to. That, my friend, is truly amazing!
    Stay strong!!!!

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  246. Jillian says:

    I’ve posted on this wonderful site several times. All of my comments dealt with my intense struggle to quit Adderall. I was tortured by this for so long. It’s been a couple years, I think, since I’ve posted anything. I’m here to say that I’ve been off Adderall for about 14 months now. I don’t miss that ever-present feeling of guilt and confusion (‘Is it me or the Adderall that’s responsible for my success?’). That anxiety that never goes away. I miss the energy and motivation I had on Adderall but I remind myself what an incredibly high price I had to pay for it. YOU CAN DO IT. It’s not easy but it gets easier with time.

  247. Lightofthetunnel says:

    Oh my god…..you are a god. ill make this relevantly short and sweet. i have never seen so much ambition into quitting adderral. everyone raves about it, and hates to quit it. but you. you sir are pure essence of the phrase “no turning back”. I admire and believe in your words!!! you ARE the light at the end of the tunnel!!!!!

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  249. Candace says:

    I think God meant for me to find this forum. I recently have come to realize how much Adderall has changed my personality and made me numb to my original love of life. I don’t like who I’ve become and what’s worse it has stolen who I once was in Christ Jesus. My heart aches and screams, I want off of the med so so bad. I cry every time I take a pill. If my body wasn’t so dependent on the drug I would flush them immediately. I have taken them for 3 years, quit when I got pregnant and got back on them because I went back to school.
    I can’t just quit cold turkey like I did last time because I have a toddler to care for. When I skip a day I can hardly move out of bed. I’m desperate to quit, i don’t know what to do…

  250. jeffrey y says:

    Ive got been on 60 mil. A day since i was 19.i am or now 35.ive been off of it for a month. Feels like life is falling. Appart and all my memories. Aare fake.

  251. M says:

    Have been taking (2) 30 mg’s a day for the past 4 years. I am 3 weeks clean and just came across this web site. I didn’t realize that so many others are struggling through something similar. Was great to read through these articles. Thanks you for the help

  252. TK says:

    I wish someone could take my place and get me through this transformation… I am 30 years old and have been taking adderall (60mg/day) for 9 years. I feel like it has helped me a lot in my life, I am not sure where I would be without it. However, I have been missing myself for quite some time now. I feel like this world puts so much on us… and I can never keep up. Adderall helped me survive after college; I could focus at work and move forward in my life. Now, after years of work, having a baby, getting married…I am drowning in my life and cant seem to get it together anymore. I watch videos of my baby girl (16 months) and can’t really remember those moments…not to mention, the moments I do remember include feeling like I could be doing something else. I did stop taking it while I was breastfeeding, but I was on pain meds and was at home with a newborn, so it was a whole different experience. As soon as I went back to work, I had to start taking my adderall again, I couldn’t even think straight. I have always struggled with enjoying “the moment” but Ive realized adderall makes it much harder. The sad thing is, I always think the adderall is going to help me, but at the end of the day I still don’t get anything done and then not only have I missed out on quality time with my loved ones, but I have not accomplished anything that I wanted to. So I am left with nothing. That is the thing…it stops working, and then everything you have built yourself up with, is destroyed, with the failure of the medication (or the tolerance you have for it). I think we are supposed to accomplish things much slower than this world expects. Adderall helps you along the way but after time, you crash and then you cant even remember how you got where you are (not to mention you don’t even feel like you can “own it”…because you had the help of your medicine). I’m rambling already… But here’s the thing…I always have struggled with depression and motivation, I am not surprised by those feelings because they are always lingering. What I am struggling with is the fact that my adderall is no longer helping…which has made me more dependent on it, obsessing over it daily…praying that it works and I feel okay again. But I DON’T. I am not motivated; I have no desire, no hope. I keep trying to find reasons to get excited about life, or ways to get “happy” and nothing works. All I feel is frustration, shame, guilt, and a feeling of drowning. I wish someone would save me. I can’t even remember what it was like to wake up and WANT to do something without the influence of adderall. I am starting to think that in addition to that… I have to have stress in my life to become energetic or motivated. I noticed that I start fights in my marriage and afterwards I feel ALIVE and energetic. I have become one of those people that “create chaos” in life because that is the only way I can move forward. It makes me SICK. I have to get better for my beautiful daughter, but I don’t even want to because I have NO motivation. That is what I am looking for on this website. I just want to feel something…because I feel nothing. Adderall has numbed me, in the process of getting me through the daily BS of life. It reminds me of the movie “CLICK”…I am so sad that I have done this to myself and a part of me doesn’t want to deal with that guilt either. I guess I need to start looking forward to the person I will be after adderall. A person that LIKES to make plans…enjoys the little things…wants to be intimate…wants to be healthy and thinks about the future. I owe it to my daughter and to myself…I am just scared. To make it worse…no one even knows I take it. My husband & I never talk about it so I don’t even think he knows I started taking it again after I went back to work, and he never knew how much I took. I am so ashamed of needing a drug, always have been & never talked about it, so I am alone in this fight. Im just going to focus on finding happiness within myself, by stopping adderall. it used to help me fight my depression, but now it is doing the opposite by stealing my true spirit. Wish me luck on getting my life back…

  253. Candace says:

    TK,
    your post sounds like it came directly out of my mouth, like a chapter from my life! I have been in the EXACT same boat and the point that has driven me to flush these evil pills are my marriage collapsing because of the drama I feel I need to create to feel alive. I also have struggled with depression/anxiety and I take Effexor XR for it. It has helped tremendously. I’ve been on it for almost 2 years. My Dr did mention however when mixing some antidepressants with adderall it can push you into an even deeper depression. My solution….. To GET OFF ADDERALL!
    What you have come to realize I think is the perfect sign that you are past due to kick the pill. I have been so afraid to because of my lack of motivation, but weighing my options (would I rather have the old me back and enjoy every one of life’s moments, or continue to be zombified by this medication). You can do it!! If I can anyone can. Taking B-6 and B-12 supplements help a great deal in giving you energy especially during the quitting stage. That and a lot of prayer. You will be amazed at how quickly you come back to the original you and people WILL notice. I you can just push thru the fogginess you get when you first stop taking Adderall, it’s pretty smooth sailing from there.

    YOU CAN DO IT TK!!

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  255. Charles says:

    To all – it’s extremely important to remember that although this drug makes you feel invincible, makes you feel 1000% more productive, and makes you feel like you’d have never achieved all that you have without it, Adderall does NOTHING for you that you couldn’t otherwise have done of your own volition. Nothing. It does not make you smarter. It does not make you skinnier. It does not make you more creative. It DOES make you less of you and more of, well, not you. Key point to remember is this: this drug does NOT empower you, it does quite the opposite. True empowerment starts and ends with you. Human willpower knows no real bounds; the artificial willpower that Adderall replaces it with ends in 4-8 hours. Stay the course. Keep up the good fight. It is SO worth it and so are YOU.

  256. Charles says:

    Also – see this story, published today (Feb 3, 2013) in the New York Times about a young man whose story about Adderall abuse sounds like many of ours – except that we have a choice on how the story ends.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/03/us/concerns-about-adhd-practices-and-amphetamine-addiction.html?pagewanted=1&ref=general&src=me

  257. Chris says:

    There is no god, I’m quitting for myself, my family, my life.. Not trying to insult anyone I just wanted to put it out there that you can quit Adderall without sacrificing your rationality. It’s also far more fulfilling to do something ON YOUR OWN. Replacing the high of Adderall with the high of religion isn’t the best choice. I’m very grateful I quit before I started hearing voices in my head (delusions). Anyway, that’s just my opinion, no need to take it personally.

  258. Anonymous says:

    First off thank you to whoever made this cite for showing me there are people out there just like me with the same symptoms of this evil drug. I have been in a constant loop of battle and struggles with this drug to the point I feel I have no identity half of the time on or off the drug. This cite however has already showed me I’m not the only one and these symptoms are normal.

    I was reluctant at first but I feel its good to share my story and keep driving into my head what this drug has done to me. I am 23 now and have been on it since 8th grade knowing deep down this has been a long time coming. I feel the main reason I have not been able to completely let go is for 1)People close to me take it, 2)The pressure of not graduating college in disbelief that I am not smart without it.
    I have tried quitting so many different times and have been very close. I went about seven months at 19 without taking one pill and those were the most lively and more human I can remember since pre-adderall. However the one area of my life I still cannot fulfill is studying. I know deep down the feeling I had once had in eight grade when this drug worked at its best. I felt invincible like I could be anything I wanted. I could exceed in school, sports, feel calm, cool and collected. It worked so well I literally felt like a cheater but I loved it at the same time.
    That being said I only allow myself to study productively when Im on mad adderall. I say “mad” because in the last two years its gotten out of control. I always say this time Im gonna be responsible and take the correct dosage. But that never works because even when I take say 2 15 mgs a day (my dosage) Im still unhappy and feel unfilled, unhuman. So then I rationalize to myself well Im gonna take a shitload of adderall to study just this one night which turns into a week of studying, not sleeping, not eating, zombied the f**k out. But again I tell myself well I need to get off of it anyway so Im just gonna finish this last bottle and then Im done.
    Well here I am again trying to quit, its been about two weeks now and doing well and really hope this is the last time. I dont even tell my parents, or friends because I sound like a broken record. Honestly I feel thats a jinx anymore because then Im discourgaged knowing they know how many times Ive said that and failed. This time I’m keeping it to myself. Im hoping they see the knew me and in time, I will show people Im done with that adderall dependent person with no confidence or certainity in life.

    My biggest fears are the same as a lot of people is that I’m unsure about the next day. I go to school at VTech and although I force myself to go to the gym and library and other places I still feel fake half of the time. Im hoping I reach some revelation or breakthrough at some point and at least feel like Im the same person every night before bed.
    What I’m realizing is this is a long process (one which Im familiar with) but I need to do some things differently. For one Im going to constantly remind myself what true happiness is…

    I believe your truly happy when your becoming the person your meant to be. Anyone who relies on adderall will NEVER be the person they are meant to be. Adderall makes me feel like I need it to succeed & forgets about the connection I should have with myself. It makes me forget that whatever I do in life is there forever!! Not for that night or however long my adderall binge lasts before I crash.

    When Im adderall Im so focused on getting an A on that test, or doing well on a project, thinking thats what I need in my life to be happy. Thats why everything sucks is because Im still not getting good grades. Well I realize now thats not it. I need a transformation, a different perspective on what the meaning of life is. The meaning of life is not to get what you want. Its to become the PERSON YOU WERE MEANT TO BE!!! Thats what will make you truly happy. And yea it sucks Im still not confident in school like I feel I should be without adderall, but at least Im on the path thats going to lead to my destiny. My destiny where Im in control and I can choose the decisions my heart truly feels.

    Good riddance adderall youve wasted enough my life & Im not gonna be a victim anymore

  259. anonymous says:

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  261. Nicole says:

    I took adderall for 8 years straight, went into recovery, and have recently relapsed. My work stressors have increased and before I knew it I had a script in my hand. I recently got a promotion without Adderall and it makes no sense now to start using. Adderall is a complete mind fuck.

  262. Brennan says:

    Adderall cost me my marriage, my personality, my lust for life. I’m a law student who works full time. I feel like it allows me to get through the day, but I feel like a shell of my former self. Most of all, the woman I am so madly in love with is no longer here. That was due in part to the drug, in part to the demands of my schedule (5am-10pm daily work/class obligations). It’s been almost 2 years since our divorce, yet it is still a struggle for me every day to wonder if it could have been prevented.

    Do you know what it’s like to not want to touch your lover? To avoid your friends? To know that your coworkers have watched you change? To lose your passion for exercise? To want to smoke constantly? To watch your body age from the drain on your body? To sit in a room of people with overwhelming anxiety? To be flushed red because the only generic at the pharmacy is the one that causes you to look like a lobster?

    I’ve been on Adderall for 3 years and am prescribed 60 mgs/day, with approval to take 70 mg on the weekends (since those are my all day study days). At max I take 80 mg on occasion, but typically I stick to the prescribed dose. Unlike many of the other posts, I sleep ok, usually 5 hours/night. Eating is a struggle.

    I received a cortisone shot about 6 months ago for a torn disc in my wrist–it has been apparent that the injection caused the medication to become less effective.

    Anyway, you can still be addicted to it even if you’re not abusing it beyond your prescribed dose.

    I have been gradually lowering my dosage every week. I feel better, but still not “myself.” I haven’t been avoiding my friends like I was, and I’m not putting chores off to instead by a drone at my laptop. My plan is to continue to lower my dose to 40mg/day, then maintain that through finals in early May. At that point I’m going to give my filled prescriptions to my girlfriend to hold through the summer. She doesn’t like the way it makes me so distant, and our initial discussions about lowering my dosage gradually have increased her faith that we can recover the passion we once had together.

    I love it, I hate it, I love it, I hate it.

    I want my life back.

    Thank you for your candid discussions. This website is going to be a big motivation.

  263. Tom J says:

    Hello,

    I have found this site to be very informative. I have been abusing adderall for over 3 years now. I did not take any for months, and I found my productivity has decrease significantly. I went to the doctor to get a prescription a couple of months ago and I am regretting that decision daily now. When I woke up today, I decided I am done feeling like a crap everyday. During the months when I did not take any I was working out daily but not eating that healthy and I still could not get motivated to do anything. Does anyone have any suggestions for me what I can do, do be productive without taking any medicine?

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  267. Rachael says:

    I pretty much agree with all of the points people make on this site, so I won’t bother telling my long battle of attempting to quit this drug that I have been addicted to for 10 years now. I have tried and failed SO many times I couldn’t even count them. And considering I went to rehab for an addiction to cocaine and had to experience 6 months of PURE HELL coming off of an addiction to Xanax, this is one of the many signs I’ve had of how horribly addicting this drug is and how sad it is to see it prescribed to so many.

    Wish me luck everybody. I am truly at the end of my rope with this and ready to move on with my life without the daily dependance on Adderall.

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  269. Immanuel says:

    Greetings,

    So I find my self in a tough spot. I recently started adderal in 2011/12. Before that, I failed at everything… mostly academically. Then I got diagnosed with inattentive ADHD, It came as a life saver. My first year in community college I was able to get a 3.0 GPA compared to my HS GGap which made me want to cry.

    I have encountered some problems: irrogrant, fast to respond, abrasive, scalp problems, time moving to fast, slurred speech, light head aches but the biggest one is the feeling that tbis drug may not be enough. That is scary, because the thought of other drugs running through my mind is becoming frequent. I also have a high sex drive and I’m practicing sexual abstinence.

    My biggest thing is failing next semester, I got the summer off which is a month or two but how long does it take to recover? I don’t have the support I need, and I like the idea of praying but I can never truly focus.

    I will say this, I’m going to flush it down the toilet tonight. I want a change, and I’m praying for the best.

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  271. JP48 says:

    I’m not sure if this is the best place to write this or not … First I’d like to thank Mike for the forum. I don’t know where to begin … I’m at a point where I don’t know what the hell I’m going to do … I’m going to just unload, so bear with me … I’ve been taking Adderall for ADD since I was 14 years old—between 30 and 40 milligrams a day … Before that I was taking Ritalin—which didn’t seem to do much of anything for me … I’m now 29 years old and have therefore been taking Adderall for about 15 years, now! When I first started taking it things changed subtly … For the first time I was able to do homework and get good grades … At the same time I began to become socially and emotionally withdrawn since I was spending so much time doing homework—but I didn’t think too much about it; I figured that this was simply what I had to do in order to obtain good grades … It didn’t help that I suddenly had this compulsion to make sure that every assignment I turned in was done perfectly … After a time my immediate family began to notice that I wasn’t socializing outside of my time at school … I started becoming interested in things that I’d never been particularly interested in before, such as physics, astronomy, hardcore classical music, literature … I started experimenting with developing certain abilities—such as playing the piano, drawing and painting, writing and philosophy, geometry … etc. After a while all of these activities began to completely dominate my life … Some people noticed this sudden display of intellectual ability—including family members—and began thinking that I was a genius … Many relatives in my family have significantly higher than normal IQ scores—particularly my older brother and my father, both of which have IQs in the 150 range … After a time I started believing that the Adderall must be helping me to tap into an inherited intellectual ability that I didn’t realize I had … people straight up told me that they thought I must be a genius and I began to believe them …
    One thing I noticed almost immediately after beginning to take Adderall was that I suddenly had no problems remembering to take it in the morning or afternoon (when I was taking Ritalin I often forgot dosages but this was no big deal for me) … It wasn’t until a few years after having been on the Adderall that I missed my first dosage … It was like a complete frontal lobotomy … I couldn’t function …
    Anyway, despite whatever display of creative or intellectual ability I’d suddenly tapped into, my life has gone absolutely NOWHERE ever since … In high school I ended up switching to a home school program and graduated from there because I was having so much anxiety about being around other people … I fell in love with someone who I now know has Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)—which translated into an unhealthy, dead-end relationship that lasted for about 7 years and went absolutely nowhere; it ended badly and ever since I’ve had post-traumatic stress symptoms as a result; I’ve developed major issues with trust and haven’t been in a serious relationship since then … I dropped out of college—twice … I got stuck working at a sandwich shop for about six years, since it was too difficult for me to deal with trying to find another job on my own; I was paid damn-near minimum wage; I worked 11 or 12 hour days; I worked between 6 and 7 days a week … This was hell for me, partly because I had to deal directly with strangers, and partly because I had absolutely no more energy left to do anything by the time the day ended or on any days off I might’ve had … My social anxiety only got worse as time went on and I was eventually diagnosed as having Avoidant Personality Disorder (AvPD), which can be somewhat complicated, but to simplify, is like an extreme form of social anxiety …
    After the relationship I was in fell apart I became completely numb to the world … the day after the relationship ended, at work I suddenly fainted and hit the back of my head on a refrigerator door handle—I’ve had a number of instances in which I’ve become dizzy and fainted ever since … I began to get extremely angry inside; instead of taking it out on the people around me, though, I developed this habit of—the only way I can describe it is to call it self-conscious eye-contact—where I either can’t look people in the eye correctly or feel like I’m staring people down when I do look at them or something … Some people have even commented to me about it … needless to say this has intensified my social anxiety dramatically … At work the fight or flight was on constant overdrive and I eventually became completely numb and disassociated … I felt like the people I worked with were secretly plotting against me, to get me fired or to make things so miserable for me that I would quit … I began to let people walk all over me … I started to neglect my appearance … I began to let my room get messy all the time … I stopped paying the rent on time … I neglected to take care of my car—which suddenly blew up on me while I was driving on the freeway one night … I ate whatever I wanted … I started drinking constantly … I began chain-smoking cigarettes constantly … I started experiencing what I only realized later were manic episodes during the summer—a type of bipolar disorder … I became obsessed with classical music and decided that I wanted to become a music composer, or to do something with music … and I was completely alone through all of this … I couldn’t allow myself to trust anyone and I basically would just come home every day and lock myself in my room … In my room I would just withdrawal into my Adderall fantasy world.
    About 3 years ago I finally broke down and called my Mom … I told her about all the problems I was having and she told me to move in with her until I get everything straightened out … She’s physically disabled so it worked out okay since I’m able to help take care of her … This was 3 years ago though and I’m still living there with her! A 29 year old man completely dependent on his mom! The plan after moving in was to get off the Adderall by switching back to Methylphenidate and then go from there [I knew A) that when I had been taking Methylphenidate before that it hadn’t really caused me any problems compared to the Adderall and B) that I hadn’t had any issues with dependence while taking it—despite having been on it for about two years straight] … I have Kaiser and right from the beginning I had to fight the psychiatrist about switching from Adderall to Methylphenidate … After he finally complied with my request I began taking less Adderall along with increasing dosages of methylphenidate (Concerta XR) in compensation—I did this in 5 milligram increments, I think … The idea of course is to eventually replace the Adderall with Concerta … What I didn’t realize then was that Methylphenidate is only about half as potent as Adderall … Apparently the psychiatrist either A) failed to realize that this was the case (which figures) or B) that the psychiatrist didn’t really care that this was the case (which also figures) since the amount of Concerta he was prescribing was something like 38 milligrams—roughly the same amount of Adderall I was taking … Either way, by the time I had switched completely over from Adderall to Concerta—though I could tell that it was doing something for me—I was still basically a guy walking around like he had had a lobotomy … When I wrote the psychiatrist with my complaints and told him that I wanted to try taking a higher dosage of Concerta he sent me a nasty email telling me that I’d better not try taking extra Concerta and that I was already prescribed what he considered to be the maximum dosage and basically that I’d better just shut up and deal with it … Eventually I caved in a wrote him saying that I was going to be attending school again, soon (which was true) and that I wanted to switch back over to Adderall … I gave him a bunch of BS about how I thought Adderall would be the perfect option for me if I were going to be attending school … He was only too happy to oblige—I didn’t even have to get an appointment or even see him this time—he simply had me drop off the remaining Concerta pills at his office and left the Adderall triplicate for one of the secretaries to give to me when I showed up … Meanwhile I suppose he was out golfing or something—I don’t know … Anyway, there I was taking Adderall again … I felt great! Here I am about a year and a half later—still taking Adderall but not feeling so great … Anyway that’s my story for now … There’s a couple things on my plate right now … I’m attending a library certificate program at school—but I’ve decided that I don’t really want to pursue that field—especially if I’m eventually going to be getting off Adderall … I’ve always loved driving and figure that that is a job that I could do that would cause me little—if any distress … So what I figured I’d do is I’ll finish getting my certificate from school then attend a commercial truck driving school to obtain my CDLA and then get a job as a long-haul or medium range commercial truck driver—they pay considerably well, include benefits, and demand for drivers is on the increase … After I learn the job thoroughly enough I’ll commit to switching back over to (an appropriate dosage of) methylphenidate …
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    Sorry for telling you my whole life story and for such a long post, but I just had to get it all out there … Also, I’ve never had a problem with abusing the Adderall and I’ve always just taken it as prescribed … Any comments or advice is highly welcome … Thanks y’all

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  288. Sarah says:

    My name is Sarah and I’m 22 years old. I was prescribed Adderall around a year and a half ago. Although I was not failing in school and always considered myself fairly responsible, after a consultation with my doctor, he assured me that it was the best option for me. While I initially found the side-effects to be mainly positive (I was more organized, felt like I had more control of things in my life, I lost 5-10 lbs, and felt more awake during the day) in the past 6 months the more devastating effects have taken hold. First and foremost, my skin has been absolutely plagued with very painful cystic and severe acne. While I suffered from the occasional hormonal breakout, it was never as consistently or unbelievably bad as it is now. I had to go to a dermatologist who switched my BC, put me on antibiotics, and prescribed me topical creams. While acne is not listed as a side effect of Adderall, after tireless research I believe it has to the be culprit. In addition to this problem, I suffer from teeth grinding, blurred-vision and eye twitches, constipation, irritability, and constant dehydration. My number one fear going off the medicine is that my performance at work will pulmit and I will gain a lot of weight. I tried going off for 4 days and the hunger was unbelievable. I’ve never been overweight, but the hunger I experienced drove me to consume nearly 4,000 in a day! I know that if I eat like that I /will/ gain weight and it could spiral out of control. But I also believe that this stuff is poison. It has blurred so much of what I love and knew about myself. I guess I’m losing hope that I can ever go off of it. 🙁

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  290. Elyse says:

    @ Sarah

    Sarah, I totally understand how you feel. I’ve been on stimulants since the 7th grade and consider myself very good at my job (in spite of severe ADD symptoms that continue even with medication). However, I am chronically dehydrated, have panic attacks and chest pains, am on a beta-blocker to keep my heart from racing so fast I pass out, the beta-blocker has caused life-threatening, untreatable asthma, and I also grind my teeth in my sleep (but always thought it was due to my Wellbutrin).

    I am about to step down to a lower dose with my doctor’s permission Monday and I’m scared to death. I am a high school special education teacher with a lot of administrative/paperwork tasks that I ALREADY struggle to keep up with, due to the ADD. I guess eventually it comes down to deciding which matters more: feeling like you are healthy but having to change your entire life, or poisoning yourself to keep the life you’ve already gotten yourself stuck in (in my case, after 4 years of college, 3 years of graduate school, and several additional classes for another teaching endorsement, not to mention 80k dollars in student debt).

    I’ve decided I’ve got to do this. However, I also know where I might start with a career backup plan. No idea how I’ll get the money to pay for it, since my fiance’ is a professional roadie and makes no money, but I’ve got to try. We’ll have to figure things out if I can’t hold onto my job, but I’m praying that won’t happen.

    Good luck!

  291. Shan says:

    I am slightly confused. Is this website for people without ADHD/ADD who take Aderall OR for those diagnosed with ADHD/ADD and who were prescribed Aderall? The use of the word addict is confusing, wouldn’t ‘Aderall user’ simply do??

  292. Adam says:

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  299. Robyn says:

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  325. Jerry says:

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    Jerry, I can listen to your adderall story. It seems we all have one here. It’s unreal to think about some of these people battling the same thing, so many years ago, I didn’t even know of the drug when this website was created. I’m so scared, I feel like once I stop the drug that my life is also going to stop. But this site and all these stories prove what I know; my life is only about to begin. I’m excited to live life above the influence! We can do this!

  327. Megan Skills says:

    This post is refreshing. The truth is… Aderall is bullshit. I wouldn’t wish that type of addiction on my worst enemy. Adderal took me within an inch of my life. Quiting was the best decision I ever made. Even cognitively I feel like I am better off without it. You can quit of you set your mind to it. The withdrawal period is tough, but if you can get through it I promise it will be worth it.

  328. Paul says:

    Adderall was like the miracle drug – it transformed me completely into somebody I was extremely proud of and excited to be. I was truly invincible…that lasted almost for the three years that I took it before it finally stopped working. I’ve been off of it for almost two months and I feel so weak, so dumb, like such a waste. I’m a coward that runs away from my problems and don’t know if I’ll ever be the same person I was while taking adderall. I vaguely remember how I was before I started adderrall but it’s gotta be better than my current state…

  329. Steve says:

    Hey Guys. I just came across this blog and would have to say am very impressed. I was addicted for about 15-20 years. It only gets worse the longer you take it. Trust me. My story is way to long and crazy to put on here. I am now 7 years without touching it. It’s not easy, it’s not fun, but trust me life is much more beautiful. The desire will never fully go away. After years now not a day goes by I don’t think about it. I pray daily and nightly for God to give me the strength to resist the temptation and he truly has. Trust me in one thing….throw it away, put your faith in God and enjoy this amazing ride he is about to take you on. I’m here for any of you if needed. Much love guys

  330. Tom says:

    I have been taking Adderall for about 6 years now. I have been mostly taking 15mg XR and 10mg IR (Instant Release on other days) I am amazed when I read the dosages people are taking. I am 6’3 at about 200lbs and I have never taken over 15mg in single day as my body will just shake and speed. I feel like it has not ever really helped me focus any better than when I didn’t take it. My wife is the one who insists I take it and claims to notice a difference. In our marriage counseling it all point to my ADHD. I have not yet told her but I have been off of it for about a week now. If this leads to a divorce then so be it. The side effects I have now are being in a fog more often now and extreme sleepiness in the afternoon at work. The main reason I went off of it was after listening to the very enlightening Podcasts “Distracted” by Mark Patey. I also feel I have lost my creativity while being on Adderall and in the last year I have found myself losing my temper more often. I am hoping to get back my old self soon. I know now that I am not defective as I have believed all these years. Please listen to the Podcasts “Distracted” by Mark Patey. He has brought a whole new awareness to my life.

  331. Ryan says:

    This site is something I was really glad to come across, alot of my friends have been suffering with Adderall addiction and everywhere I look people are abusing. The last couple years I have been studying nootropics and natural Adderall alternatives and finally found some that were able to help my friends get clean but still use something that would benefit them in a positive way.

    I would love it if you shared my website and I would gladly share yours on mine

    http://howtomakemoneyfromadderall.com/natural-adderall-alternatives

  332. Brian says:

    this article is very powerful i find everything very true. I was beat everyday of my life till i was 16, tried every drug in the book,i nearly died, but getting off Aderall after 6 years was the hardest thing iv ever done. i lost multiple girlfriends, i was an obsessive asshole, ect. If i knew about these articles 2 years ago you would of saved my life. but i did it anyways all by myself with no one by my side. its a tough battle to bear on your own, and when i think of relapsing i will look at your articles. Thank you

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  334. Laura B says:

    To those about to begin on their “journey” to a new you,to those about to say GOODBYE to what you are sure you can never live without, the almighty powerful Adderall, I say to you BE STRONG ,YOU CAN DO THIS!! Do NOT look back!! Your first few days, weeks, months will be nothing short of a living hell but it IS possible to quit, to kick this thing, this evil, to the curb! I am currently 9 months clean from doing 120 mg or more each day for almost 3 years..life has been to say the least,a blur of emotions,struggles,and painful reminders of my 3 yr love affair with the drug, HOWEVER,I have finally begun after all these months to see my true self, to make some monumental progress, to evolve into the me that I am without popping a pill.Clearly, Im not trying to sugar coat this..It was one of the hardest things I have EVER done, but please believe that you will be ok, you WILL feel better, you WILL get your true energy back!!

  335. Natalie says:

    I am doing this as well… I cant do it any longer and live my life this way… It is gross and scary. Do any of you know of a way to BAN yourself from being able to get prescriptions? I want to et this taken care of so next week when I am wanting an Adderall I dont just call my Dr. Thanks for your help!Natalie

  336. Ob says:

    All of these comments touched me, moved me, and scared me. I’m 24 and I have been on adderal since I was 19. I did stop to take if for a few months and I didn’t abuse it until this past year. This past year I moved away from friends and family to be with my significant other. As soon as I moved I started taking more and more, but rarely exceeding my prescription dosage. I had depended on it before hand for exercise. I became obsessed with working out and adderall gave me the energy go.
    When I moved I became depressed I didn’t have a job I had just graduated college and I used them to help make me happy. Before I could go a few days with none and I wouldn’t notice. But I’m ashamed to say it’s been 1 year and I have taken a pill every single day.
    They are not working for me anymore they don’t make me feel amazing I am stressed out all the time constantly planning for when I should take the next one. It’s 4 am currently and I am awake because of them. I don’t want to be on a pill forever. But quitting makes me scared. I’ve been forgetting things lately and that makes me nervous. My heart rate is crazy high. I wear a heart rate monitor when I exercise and my heart rate has gone up to 207 before!! I know it is not healthy. I lack the strength to throw them out on my own. I’ve been saying for the past year I’m not going to take any for a couple of days and I never could. I’ve never told anyone that I depend on them. My significant other wakes up soon and I am going to tell him. Ask for his help with me slowly weaning off. I don’t remember who I was before adderall. I feel like I can’t be anything without it. I need that push that motivation. I know there are other ways to get it. I can be extremely loving one minute and cold and quiet the next. I am scared that I am going to loose my passion for exercise as I’ll be too tired or too weak. I see people who work hard all day and go to the gym and wonder how anyone can do that without adderall. The mind is everything.

  337. Ob says:

    We talked about it and I flushed them. I already feel better, nervous, but hopeful. I also expierence really bad grinding of my teeth. So bad that I had to get a fitted mouth guard that cost me 200$ and I have managed to crack it! I have had acne for a while never anything major then i started to expierence horrible breakouts about 2 years ago. I believe it was a combination of things, adderall being one. I decided to fix that with more drugs and take accutane horrible for your health I don’t recommend taking it -ever! The breakouts came back but not as extreme. I’m so glad I came across this. I’m ready to have a sense of clarity and work on my health.

  338. Mike says:

    I am 47 and have been taking Vyvanse (similar to Adderall) for about 4-5 years. I started taking it because I had depression. I tried numerous antidepressants that were effective only partially because they would cause low dopamine-like symptoms. I knew that I needed a serious dopamine boost. I asked my Dr. about Adderall because I thought it might help. I was so desperate for stimulation. He sent me to an ADHD specialist who diagnosed me with adult ADHD. The specialist prescribed Vyvanse which would only work for a few days then stop. At every appointment he kept raising the dose telling me that I had an enzyme that was breaking it down too rapidly. I was up to 250mg of Vyvanse (equal to about 100mg of Adderall) plus an additional 80 mg of adderall to take ‘as needed’ at one point.
    I was still having problems. And migraines!! Oh my god!! He finally stopped the dose escalation.
    I titrated down to 150 mg of Vyvanse and have been at that dose for about 3 years.
    It has really caused significant problems in my life and really doesn’t do anything for motivation anymore. I have missed so much work due to headaches that it is just ridiculous. I don’t exercise, play guitar or visit friends anymore. I just sit on the computer and research “brain health” so I can get myself off of this crap but have it supported when I do that.
    When I first started taking it ,it was great (when it worked)! I was getting so much stuff done! I accomplished tasks that I would never would have dreamed possible before! But it didn’t last. Now it actually makes me more tired. The real problem for me is:
    -regardless of all the negative stuff it does, it helps hugely for boredom and depression still. So everything around me can be falling apart, my memory shitty, my boss, friends, wife all frustrated with me but my baseline mood is still much better than when I wasn’t taking it several years ago.
    I wish I could use it only when I really need it but I need it ALL THE TIME!
    My wife is so sick of me saying “I got to get myself off of this crap!” every time I get a bad migraine that costs me work time. She is also becoming distant because of how it makes me less affectionate and not really doing anything productive. I worry that she is going to leave me if I keep this up.
    I am really thinking about dumping the Vyvanse down the toilet but I am afraid that I may regret it.
    I worry about how bad the withdrawal will be. Titrating down is not an easy task when it is so easy to cheat. I took a week off of work because I was planning on quitting cold turkey but I haven’t done that. I have reduced my dose however. I am now down to 75 mg of Vyvanse a day and I was taking 125 mg(The maximum dose is 70 mg!). I’m going to try only 50 mg tommorow.
    I am hoping that by getting this written out like this and by sharing it with people who understand it will make it easier.
    The best support is from the people that have been there.

  339. Chelsea says:

    I took adderall from 2007 to 2015. up until 2013 i took it like it was prescribed. i took my boyfriends presciption for YEARS before finally getting my own in 2014. At first, it was a game changer. I was working 30 hours a week and got my bachelors degree in elementary education. It gave me the confidence and drive i needed to be a teacher. In 2013 my boyfriend got IR tablets and I was working 11 hour days at a summer camp. I started to take more than I should have. I began picking and over analyzing blemishes on my face. I picked to a point that put me in the hospital for a week because i got facial cellutis. To add to all that above..I have always had self confidence issues…the weight loss I experienced on adderall put me on cloud 9. I went from 5’4 145 to 120. I had never felt better about my weight or myself. (that may sound vein but it is what it is) My tolerance for adderall slowly climbed upward. Thats when i went in to get my own prescription. I was prescribed 40 mg a day (20 xr 20 ir) and was also supplementing with my boyfriends prescription when needed. My apartment was spotless, i felt good about myself. I started taking anywhere from 60-100 mg a day for MONTHS. This turned me into a hyperchondriac. I thought i had a very nasty autoimmune disorder and I never slept plus I had terrible eating habits (like not eating hardly anything at all and drinking wine to come down off all the adderall I was taking.) Doing that RUINED my metabolism. I lost my job as a teacher, i wasnt a bad teacher..but obviously the adderall wasnt helping me like i thought it was anymore. I began selling life insurance the summer after I lost my teaching job..Studying for my insurance license test lead to sleepless nights and MAJOR adderall abuse the next day just to stay awake. I ended up never passing my insurance test and resigning. I took a teachers aide job in the fall of 2014. I got a new dr and he started weaning me off adderall. I HATED him for it..even though I obviously needed something to change. I gained 35 lbs to 120 to 155 from October to December of 2014. I HATED myself.. I would try to work out and eat right and nothing was changing..i would cry from frustration. Then there was the phase of not wanting to do ANYTHING ..all i could do was sleep..going to work and getting there on time were a constant struggle. This ruined my chance of getting a teaching position the next school year at the school i was aiding at. I would go to work and rush home as soon as i could just to hit the couch. In December of 2014 I was still prescribed to 20 mg XR and feeling this was. I was so used to much more.
    In January of 2015 I stopped taking the adderall cold turkey..I didnt have insurance and couldnt afford my prescription…and obviously it was a long time coming. I was weighing about 160 at this point and very unhappy with myself. I was attempting to eat healthy and work out…but the truth is I had NO energy to work out.

    On Jan 18. 2015 I found out I was 4-5 weeks pregnant. I stopped my antidepressants and continued with no adderall . I was a hot mess, I would wake up crying just wanting an adderall to help get me through my day at work. Even though i knew i couldnt take them pregnant and wouldnt even if they were around. I told the people I was close with at work that i was pregnant and because I worked with autistic children that got violent I was moved to another school.

    Even though I struggled, I was FINALLY confortable and starting to do okay where I was at. Then I was uprooted. Instead of just one autistic child and teachers I loved and was comfortable around but in Feb of 2015…I got relocated to a school where I worked with 3 autistic children half the day and 1 child that was even more violent than the first (why even move me…it was hell…I know the kids needed me and I did my very best to be there for them). It was so hard. On top of the workload being more difficult and all new ..the teachers weren’t nearly as nice and welcoming to me at my new school. I was having a long adderall withdrawal process, tried and pregnant, off ALL meds, and fell into a severe depression. It was a chore to get up and go to work everyday. I would cry for at least 30 minutes every morning before going into work in this new environment. I was absent a lot. That was not like me. I endured what I could there and ended up quitting in May 2015. Could I afford to quit? NO I definitely couldnt. I just couldnt take the unwelcoming teachers..I felt left out..I had no one to talk to. The last straw was getting a chair thrown at my stomach (keep in mind I was 20 weeks pregnant in May ) and being undermined by a teacher. At this point I was weighing 179.Now I am 30 weeks pregnant. I have pulled myself up a little , but I know I am still depressed. I am now 30 weeks pregnant anfd weigh 198 lbs. I am disgusted with myself. I dont even look like me. My dr hasnt said anything about gaining too much weight and my BP is good..no gestational diabetes.

    However, I have been through quit a lot and I am still struggling. 10 more weeks until my baby gets here. I cannot wait to meet him. I pray I can loose a significant amount of weight post baby. I pray even harder i regain some normal energy and can remain off the adderall. At this point that is all I can do. I know I am depressed and I have no real friends but my fiance and family. I try to keep my head up. I cant always..but sometimes I am farely successful.

    I know this is a long post..if anyone reads this and makes it to the end I would love to hear some words of encouragement. Or if you just need to talk my email is Chelseabriwilson@gmail.com.

    I am so glad I typed all this out..FINALLY i have shared my story. I hope and pray it helps someone.

    Peace, Love and Light to you all.

    PS please excuse the grammatical errors.. I typed all this on tablet..I just needed to get it out there.

  340. kahud says:

    Does anyone ever get hyperfocus? I have had huge problems with this since middle school. I get so focused on something time slips away from me and by the time I know it, it will be 3am and I’ve been online shopping or reading a blog for hours. I totally have adhd thought because I’ve been diagnosed with the same kind on 3 sep occasions by 3 sep doctors/studies. But I would love to hear stories about hyperfocus.

  341. Good Day Everyone.
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  342. alEXmin says:

    Hell, everyone! I want to say thank you to author of this website for gathering all the data on quitting adderall, but could you please write more about why should I quit it. Post some info about physical harm of this drug, on it’s neurotoxicity. All the stuff about “you’ll become yourself once you quit” would’t be convincing enough if I could just pop pills all time w/o harm to my body. Thanks in advance!

  343. niz says:

    cant believe i found this site. was just talking about how hopeless i feel with my boyfriends aderall addiction. i feel like i have lost the love of my life. my heart hurts for him more then myself because i still remember who he was before the medication…the problem is that he doesn’t. im printing this page and committing to helping my baby be the green eyed angel he was

  344. Phil says:

    its so relieving to see people who went through a adderall addiction and overcame it. Ive been taking adderall for 7 years no prescription needed because i have a dealer. Ive tried to quit for so long telling myself this is my last pill pop but week after week month after month it got worse. I never took it for studying purposes i just wanted to have fun. because of the addiction i dropped out of school lost my job and have no sense of direction. it scares me to be 24 and not have anything to show for it. when i felt like i can go cold turkey i would have dreams about taking adderall and that morning after the dream id be right at my dealers house waiting to get some pills. i feel like i cant fight it but i have no choice but too because its ruining my life meantally emotionally and physically. i dont really like talking to people because i cant have a normal conversation with somebody without feeling stupid because i forget what i was going to say or i stumble over my words. i tried to tell people about my addiction but they dont get it… so its really hard because i feel so alone in this. anyway like many of you ive decided to quit AGAIN lol! i really hope and pray i can overcome it.

  345. AnnB says:

    First of all I want to say, like many others have mentioned, that this site really is a Godsend. I begged God for help and found this after years of reading other advice that never really spoke to me like this one did. Thank you to everyone who was willing to finally be honest about this harsh reality of this epidemic that is becoming more and more prevalent every day. That being said I am a little concerned about the lack of feedback and support seen recently as compared to 2011/2012 when this blog was newer. This has obviously really helped people have hope and it is hard to get support for an addiction that most of the world doesn’t understand or even accept as being wrong. That being said I do think there needs to be more people dedicated to actively responding to people like me who are obviously crying out for help. It is a proven fact that true recovery isn’t possible unless you have an active support group who knows what you are going through and we all have something that does not compare to what he average addict suffers with-we started this drug because we were told by “professionals” that in order to be successful and live a normal life we have to take a mind altering drug. We initially started it to be productive members of society because we have a “disability” called ADD that prevents us from functioning “normally”. Most addicts have the motivation to stay clean simply from from the fact that they know what they are doing is wrong and if they don’t stop their life will fall apart. STIMULANT ADDICTS HAVE TO ACCEPT THAT THEIR LIFE MIGHT FALL APART IF THEY QUIT. That is tough to swallow and makes recovery extremely difficult and almost impossible for some of us. Most other addicts do not associate their drug of choice with the reason they have a career or goals or aspirations. In fact most addicts probably didn’t have much of anything positive come from their abuse. ADDERALL/VYVANSE ADDICTS GIVE A PILL CREDIT FOR ALL OF THEIR ACCOMPLISHMENTS. This makes it extremely difficult, and impossible for some, to quit. Instead of being “stuck in time” like most addicts are during their using period, we created a life during our abuse, and if/when we quit we have to continuing living the life that adderall created for us due to bills, loans, rent and in my case having no family willing to take me in and support me while I start over and figure out what the heck my true passions are and who I really am. Based on other stories in this blog a lot of us chose our career paths on stimulants and when off realize that we really have no interest in it. This makes our journey extremely hard for others to relate to and understand.
    THAT BEING SAID ALL OF YOU WHO ACTUALLY BEAT THIS PLEASE KEEP ENCOURAGING PEOPLE LIKE ME AND SHARING YOUR POSITIVE STORIES. US WHO STILL STRUGGLE DESPERATELY NEED ADVICE FROM OTHER PEOPLE WHO UNDERSTAND AND REMINDERS THAT LIFE WILL BE BETTER WITHOUT IT DESPITE WHAT THE WORLD TRIES TO TELL US. WE NEED YOUR HELP

    With all of out of system I can now share my story with those of you who can understand my pain and hopefully get support that I desperately need. I am 26 years old and a teacher (worst career choice I could have made with my ADD). I have been on stimulants for 7 years and abusing them for probably about 3….but to be honest I was probably abusing them the entire time due to my ability to get my doctor to increase my dosage when I didn’t need it. I NEVER took less than 60mg (my actual dose). My last couple of years of college I would get to about 80 mg and when I started teaching that easily got up to 140mg on some days. I switched to vyvanse hoping to end my abuse but of course I ended up going right back to taking more than prescribed (two to three 70mg pills a day) just like I did with the adderall. Before adderall in high school I was smoking pot and recreationally taking pills and never really applied myself so basically the prime years of my life where I was supposed to be learning skills that I could use for the rest of my life and finding my passions and dreams were all fogged by some sort of substance abuse. That is what makes quitting so terrifying for me. The majority of the time I take it I barely get anything done and hyper focus on something random and waste hours doing nothing of substance, but for some reason I still run to them and I still feel like I need them to conquer the day. Sometimes I will hurry up and go to bed super early just so I can wake up and pop a couple more. I crave the hyper focus it gives me where I actually feel involved in whatever I’m doing as opposed to watching the clock waiting for time to pass. Even though stimulants do make me feel like a zombie I feel like I enjoy simple things better on it. I feel like without them I won’t really enjoy much of anything and I won’t have the self discipline I need to do it anyways. I think I am addicted to the hyper focus escape that blocks out the rest of my messed up world. I feel like when I give up stimulants I will be giving up a friend who has been there when I needed to feel again. But that is why I have GOT to stop this viscous cycle. God did not intend for a drug to give me fulfillment that can only come from him.

    I have been through so much and I got into teaching for the right reason but i do not think it was the right path for me. I do love my students but I do not think I am what they need as a teacher and I walk through the day feeling embarrassed and not up to par because I can barely even manage to keep my classroom looking like a tornado ran through it(and that is WITH my medication). I know that part of my job will only get worse when I quit and I have accepted that and am ready for that but having to go through all of that in front of my students and co workers is going to make it extremely hard to cope with.
    Also I am terrified that without medication I am going to have the life skills of a child since all my important years were masked in mind altering substances and it is going to be extremely difficult to master self discipline, self control, organization, motivation etc (skills that normal people take for granted). I am scared that no matter hard I try I will never be able to live like a normal adult. I am scared that the “blah” feeling I get about life when I quit will never go away. Every time i quit I overall feel happier and less stressed but I don’t seem to enjoy anything except eating, sleeping, and watching tv. When on my medicine I enjoy painting and playing the piano and making interesting lesson plans but without it I don’t feel like I have any passions and the things i once enjoyed feel like chores. I feel like I am a worthless blob with a boring life off of my medication and I am so scared that that is who I will continue being when I give it up for good. But I am actually going to do it this time for longer than a month so I can really find out who I am. I just want to be like normal adults and have hobbies and keep a clean house and have a life that is somewhat manageable but I feel I will never have that. I feel so lazy and it makes me sick. Every time I plan to quit I tell myself that when I am off my meds I will force myself to clean and exercises and eat right and make lesson plans but as soon as the medicine is out of my system I can’t seem to do any of that even if I tried. I can’t pull any type of self disciple out of me in order to do thjngs I don’t enjoy and that is such a debilitating feeling that makes me feel like a worthless piece of crap who with a life that I am not at all proud of. I am an adult I should be able to just do things I don’t enjoy in order to have a functioning enjoyable life but I continuously settle for a life I am embarrassed and ashamed of.

    Now after that much needed vent and explanation of why I am having a hard time I want to say that I noticed one thing I’m these testimonies that most everyone has in common. Most of us on here so desperately want to be free from addiction and who are finally to our breaking point and tired of all the failed attempts of getting better have come to accept that we can not do this without relying on God to be in control. I have tried SO many things times to quit on my own and that does not work. Also this time I hsve finally found my main purpose for wanting to quit (besides the fact that I know I am an addict). I really want to LIVE the life God intended me to live. I want to be free from the anxiety and depression and guilt that comes from my dependency on stimulants. I want to form connections with people that feel real and authentic. I want to be able to get out of my head long enough to enjoy life instead of letting it pass right by me. I want to stop being so self absorbed. I want to see what it is like to live a life that is 100% me—the person GOD intended for me to be.

    Now I am praying that when I find the real me that I actually like that person, because if I don’t it is going to be very hard not go back to this fake like I have been living for years. Please pray for me anyone who reads this and know that you are not alone. If anyone reading this has any words of encouragement or testimonies proving how much better life is when you aren’t a slave to this drug please share.

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  352. Anonymous says:

    I just came upon this site and have been thinking of going off adderall. It’s been a battle in my mind for months now, if God wants me to quit. I think I know the answer, YES! Pray for me, as I will be praying for all of you.

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