I was on the phone with my therapist today, discussing the possibility of an ADHD diagnosis. About forty minutes in, he started asking, “It sounds like you’re…” and my brain finished for him, “hoping to be diagnosed with ADHD.” Part of me feared, for a split second, that he thought I was being selective with what I shared, painting a picture of what I want to see, not what’s really in front of me, but instead he said, “It sounds like you’re looking for a medical treatment,” so I just answered, “The thought I could take something to fix just things is very hopeful.”
And then, because I know rushing to medication immediately isn’t always the best answer (I was in counseling for depression two years before I began any prescriptions), when he asked if I would be open to continuing psychotherapy or adjusting the medications I’m already taking, I told him, of course, I’d be willing to give it all a shot. I am. In fact, waiting for a new medication is probably wiser, whether or not I feel impatient waiting for things to finally change.
When the call ended, he hadn’t given any diagnosis, but in addition to scheduling a second meeting, he also scheduled me with a psychiatrist in his practice whom he feels is especially good at teasing out what’s depression and what might be ADHD. That sounds a lot like what I need, and I’m hopeful for what’s to come, but now, hours later, that first impulse in my brain still lingers: What if he thinks I was being selective? Why do I feel such desire to be diagnosed?
What would it mean for him to say I actually have ADHD?Continue reading