I don’t like the word “drug.” It’s too broad a definition and at the same time too narrow a perceived grouping.
Substance is a much better word. Any substance that has a positive, or negative effect on the body or mind is really what should be encompassed by the word drug.
And yet, by that definition, food becomes a drug.
And maybe it should be considered to be a drug, given that certain foods have negative effects on us and others have positive effects.
A great example is sugar. Perceived as having a negative effect on our bodies, it is also perceived as having a negative effect on our (we with ADHD) minds.
And yet, what really happens is that it stimulates our minds positively for a brief period of time and then drops us floundering and without focus.
That brief bit of focal clarity causes some of us to crave sugar.
Craving is not good?
Not very good, no. My craving is for alcohol.
The calm and quiet of a stunned and drunken brain that only has one voice, albeit one loud and screeching voice, raving and ranting about whatever single thought is occupying it at the moment instead of the myriad of thoughts pinging around in my sober skull is what I crave, though while I’m sober it is hard to say why.
The beginning lull that occurs between one and four drinks is so sublime, and yet I can’t stop there.
Well, okay, I can stop, so long as it is completely. I can’t stop after four drinks, but I can stop before the first one.
I’m stopped and have been stopped now for nearly 36 years.
And alcohol is a drug as surely as morphine is.
Here’s an odd thing though …
Methylphenidate, what the world calls Ritalin, makes my head calm. and yet I do not need a second one.
In fact, can forget to take it, not remember to take it until it is too late in the day to take it.
I do not take it
I am unable to take Ritalin because of the potential side effect of anxiety. Potential for the ADHD public, actual for me.
Oddly, I’m okay with that. I appreciated the clarity of having that extra control over my focus, but the feeling that I needed it was never there.
I still crave alcohol. I take neither.
I have pain
I am in constant pain from arthritis, and I was taking an anti-inflammatory that moderated that pain for me well enough that I could cope. And then other health issues came along that required me to take medication that conflicted with that pain management medication.
So my pain is now managed by a much stronger medication with different side effects that won’t conflict with the other meds I need to take.
But I’m one dose in, last night’s dose, and I’m feeling pretty hung over.
And anything …
Anything that makes my brain feel different is going to affect my ADHD symptoms.
Stress? Fatigue? Focus? Snow? Stimulation? All of them will change my life in multiple ways.
And those changes will be good or bad, and the net gain or loss will have to be dealt with.
I’ll keep you posted on how it goes.