I have been trying to write this for days now. Trying to understand the reason behind it, behind my lack of will power to do it, I understood one thing: I am scared. I am scared because doors are closing and doing this, asking for help on the Internet, may be my last real chance to escape this nightmare I am living right now. If it fails, I don’t know what I will do. So, what is this nightmare? You may ask. It all begins about 6 years ago, when I was 19, young, younger I mean. A lot more immature, ignorant and yet, as full of hopes and dreams as I am right now.
When I graduated from high-school I rented, with the help some very incredible people, an apartment to live with my girlfriend. I don’t want to make things too complicated to be understood here, so I will simply say three things: first, we do not have children, we did not move because of that. Second, we both moved out from home because we wanted to live together, yes, but also because we wanted to live closer to college and give everything we had to school. Third, we both had jobs back then and the idea, of course, was to keep them and earn money to have a better life with each passing year. We had plans to buy a car, furniture, to buy many, many books and a bookcase for them and more.
Before I continue with the story, I may have to tell you two things (apparently, I like to do lists): first, don’t imagine this in the United States or any other first world country. I live in a third world country; many things are different. For instance, medical services are not the best, salaries are a lot smaller and education is not as good as in other places. Second, I was never the type of guy who did his homework or who studied a lot, but I was the guy who got the best grades in the classroom. School never was a problem, until I started going to college.
First year in my new life I lost my job, started having these bad, very bad discussions with my girlfriend and college went to hell. I did nothing. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t drop out of school, I did not start drinking or using drugs, I have never done that, I love school, it was my dream to go the university I was in and I was living it, I was living my dream, I had an apartment with the love of my life, was studying the career of my dreams in the university of my dreams and all I had to do was to keep a mid-time job, keep my place clean and functional, save some money and study hard. Everything else would flow, I had everything, had…
I always told to myself that when the time came, I would do the right thing. When the time came, I would work hard. When the time came, I would study, read, do my homework. When the time came, I would be an organized person, a responsible, clean, focused human being. Far from it, I almost did the opposite. And why did I have to tell myself this instead of always being like it? Well, I will get into that.
For years I did nothing to stop my life from going to hell. My girlfriend took almost full economical responsibility for our place as, even though I kept getting new jobs, I also kept being fired or I would quit within months. I tried every year to study, to read, to do my homework. I love what chose to study! But I never did anything to prove it. I kept studying by myself, though, in my own terms, reading about what interested me, developing skills, meeting people, but nothing that could be compared to what I wanted of my life. I started two businesses and for a while they worked, and I was happy, for a while, but they didn’t last much against the economic crisis in my country. I learned a lot from my experiences. I found comfort in philosophy, I started working on my character, on my persona, practicing virtue, strength, I looked for wisdom and while I am not a wise man, I have learned a lot from those who are. It wasn’t enough and I didn’t know why. I was desperate. My girlfriend was desperate. My family and friends… worried. For about 5 years, this kept going. My relationship broke down and I don’t know how I am still with her, I guess she does love me a lot, because the parasite I had become was not worth her time. My academic career is far from over and my pockets are empty.
How do you make sense of all this? A year ago, I used to think that I simply was a jerk, a failure, a joke of human being, an idiot, a slacker, a selfish brute, a bad person, to the core. I hated myself. That’s how I made sense of it. Then, something happened. Something actually really bad but that threw light into my situation.
My life is not the only life that is hard. My parents, while I was gone, dealt with their own nightmares, one of which turned into reality. Long story short, my grandparents owned a house where they lived a part of their lives. When my grandmother died, my grandfather moved out of this house and gave it to his sons. My father, whom around the time had just gotten married with my mother, asked his brothers and sister to sell him their parts of the house and they did, and we went to live there. This is the house of my whole childhood we are talking about. But after receiving the money his sister, my aunt, decided to keep the scriptures of the house, which for some reason she had. She then mortgaged the house and lost it to the bank. For years and years and years my father had a legal fight with the bank in which he lost huge amounts of money demanding or trying to buy the house again, until the bank, in a totally illegal move, sold the house to another man.
This man took legal action against my family and after a long and costly fight, he did something horrible. He, unlike my family, is a wealthy man and he used this to his advantage. He bribed people all around to give himself time to hire some thugs and kick my sister, my mother and my aunt (from the side of my mother) from the house, by force, without warning. They broke in, took everything, literally everything and they threw it to the street. It was humiliating and brutal. They were in their pajamas. My mother later told me that he even took a camera with him and recorded everything while laughing at my sister’s and mom’s cries for mercy. They only wanted a few days to move out with dignity. My father was not at home that time. According to this man, it was a legal eviction but when we went over it and investigated, we understood that it was not legal at all and the silence of the authorities involved could have only been explained if he had bribed them, something that is not uncommon in my country.
It was incredibly painful to me to go to my childhood home and see every single thing thrown into the street, broken, dirty. My sister got her computer, with all her work from college, stolen. Charges were never made because my father decided he didn’t want to fight anymore, specially not against someone so dangerous. So, they moved on and things have not been good to them either. Up until now, they still don’t have a place for themselves, they have lived with my grandparents for most of it (mother’s side). My father works all day but it’s never enough, my sister had to leave college for a while to help the family. I would help them, but I have my own family of two (my girlfriend of now 7 years and an old cat I rescued from the street) to protect and I’m not even doing it right. There’s a lot more to this story but for now I will leave it here. Why did I tell it, then? Well…
Among the things that were thrown into the street that day and we spent the whole day recovering, I found a box full of papers who told my story. Drawings, photos, old exams, grades and things like that. The kind of stuff that a mother keeps. I got to keep them because at the moment they didn’t even know where they would sleep, so I rescued what I could. The box containing the papers stood in my apartment for a few weeks but one night I decided to go through it with my girlfriend. While remembering things, laughing and crying a bit as well, breaking some old painful papers and treasuring others, I found something crucial.
Back when I was 13 years old, I was heavily bullied by another kid at school. This ignited in me a depressive episode which had to be treated with therapy. I lost the year because the thought of going to school became unbearable and had to start over. (That’s also another story for another time). The paper I found was the psychologist diagnosis made all those years ago. I was expecting nothing more than I just told you: depression. But there was something else there. Something strange, something I didn’t know anything about: ADHD.
My first reaction was denial, I threw the paper back to the box and forgot about it. But a few days later my girlfriend, incredible woman, got close to me and told me she had done some research. She started explaining to me what ADHD meant, what was, and it… it all started to make sense. So, I did my own research. Before I continue, I would like you to watch two videos so that we are on the same page. Meet another incredible woman, Jessica McCabe:
I was not stupid. I was not lazy. I was not… bad. I started reconstructing my life, my school years, my failings at work and college, my failed (on my side) relationship. When I started reading about people with ADHD, it was like reading a book about myself. How my brain works, how my thoughts work, how my life works, what many of my weaknesses are, the struggles I face. It was shocking and, although it’s not always nice to know you have a condition, that you are not “healthy”, it was a blessing. Because now I knew what was wrong with me. Now I knew why no matter how hard I tried, not matter how much I cared, no matter how much I suffered, no matter how much I wanted to do the things I knew I had to do to be happy and make the woman I love happy and myself, I couldn’t do them.
Here I would like to make another pause to talk about the incredible woman I live with, because if I’m doing this right now, it’s not only to try to save myself but also her. First of all, let me tell you something: living with someone with ADHD is not easy. Not at all, we are terrible at things most people consider “normal” or “easy”. We can constantly forget things, even the important ones, we sometimes cannot focus on things that matter at will (like working), we can appear selfish because we don’t pay attention to you when you need it, we can be very disorganized, and more… Jessica can help you understand this more deeply, if you want to take more than my word about it:
But, living with someone with ADHD while also having bipolar disorder, is even worse. And living with someone with ADHD who doesn’t know that he has ADHD and having to bring 80% or 90% of the income of a house while also studding college and also having bipolar disorder, may be hell. My girlfriend, the woman I love, has bipolar disorder. I knew this even before we moved in together. I was supposed to be the one who would take care of her, who would understand her and help her heal and build her way up in life. But I never could do that, I was the worst and I didn’t know why at the time, but I failed her over and over and over again and only made our way deep into the pit. She also has struggles, huge ones, and I managed to break her more than once in tears, screams and more. She has suffered at least as much as I have and yet she has managed to become a great human being. She also had troubles following up in her studies, yes, she has been very depressed, yes… but she has never given up and I admire her, and I don’t think I deserve her. Her story is not mine to tell, my friends, but trust me on this (here comes another list): first, she is an amazing woman and she deserves to be happy. Second, she struggles, a lot. Third, I made her struggle way more than she needed to, and I’m in debt with her because of that. For those of you who don’t know what bipolar disorder is or want to know more about it, here are, again, a few videos:
Living with someone who has a mental disorder, I was no stranger to what I had to do, now that I knew I had one too. First of all, I asked my parents what was going on. Why did they not tell me about this? I was angry, very angry. I think I still am in a way. ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder, which means I was born with it, it didn’t appear out of nowhere and it is usually diagnosed at a very young age. In my case, I was diagnosed at the age of 6, but my parents decided not to medicate me, fearing it would cause more troubles than it would fix, and they decided to ignore the diagnose. The reasons? Well, I am an inattentive type of ADHD, meaning I don’t have the hyperactivity. Back then, this difference was not very clear and specially not in my country and in the minds of my parents, so they figured that since I was not the “typical” ADHD kid jumping around the classroom, screaming, being impulsive and things like that, I didn’t have ADHD. Oh, I did have it and it affected my every day, but they didn’t know how it did. Instead, they were the first to call me lazy or imprudent when symptoms got me into troubles.
So now that I knew that I had an actual diagnose from when I was 6 and a second one from when I was 13 and I knew why I didn’t know about them, I found a psychiatrist. I was, for the third time, diagnosed with ADHD and, for the second time, with clinical depression. I was prescribed some pills and after a lot of more research and thinking, I took my first pill, less than a month ago from writing this. I don’t even have a month taking them but… the differences between the me without the pills and without the knowledge about my ADHD and the me with them are huge. I would like you to, please, watch one last round of videos, so that you may understand how I feel, how much it really has helped me out to take these pills. If you think it has been a lot of videos and you are starting to feel like this is too much, please, just watch the first one. Oh, and by the way… no, I do not know Jessica and I am not trying to get her views on YouTube. She has helped me a lot, yes, and I many others and I think she is good at explaining things, better than I am. Just that.
The first day I took my first pill, I was able to sit down and write at will for the first time in… years, maybe. The second, I was able to read. The third, I was able to finish around 5 projects I had left behind for months. For weeks I have been feeling strong, full of energy, focused, capable. I can now control my actions and all the philosophy I read and the tools I gathered about ADHD has done wonders to my life in the space of two to three weeks. I am not “cured” of ADHD, that is not possible. I still have a terrible memory, I am still very disorganized, I still struggle with a lot of things, but I’m starting to take control over my life.
(I post this image because the page recommended that I uploaded at least one image related to the request, but I wasn’t sure what it could be. I will be more than happy to provide proof that my needs are real, as long as it does not put myself or my family at risk).
So, why am I here? If this is a “success story”, why am I writing this? Well, because it’s not a success story, it’s a tragedy story or it will become one. Past, wise man say, is in the past… yes, I can’t change the past. But sometimes the past catches on you, tells you that your mistakes have consequences. Sometimes the past affects the present and the future. And my past is full if mistakes and troubles and they are about to run me over. What’s going on?
Well, about 5 years without having a stable job has its consequences. I have had to ask for money to the bank about 4 times in these years and It was very difficult to pay it. I actually have a debt that I am not planning to cover with the money I am asking you for right now because it would be a much higher amount and because I believe it to be under control. I need the money urgently because of something else, because right now my pockets are empty, because we live by the day and…
Last December, to be specific, the very 25 of December I received a message from my landlord. He is changing the way he uses the building we live in, he is going to turn it into offices, and we need to move out. In January I couldn’t find a way to make the money I need to move out, I have until the end of February. Between my debts, health issues my girlfriend has, my own medical condition and the expenses a change of place require, I’m desperate. My family can’t help, her family can’t help, I have no friends to ask for help and because of my debts, I can’t ask the bank for money again. This country is slowly falling apart and not many have enough money to look after themselves and help someone too. This is the same reason my businesses fell apart.
I also need the money because even though my girlfriend has been a saint with me, she has had enough. She told me, and she is right, that she needs to live with someone who can provide to her as much as she provides herself, not someone she has to carry around. She is leaving me unless there’s a radical change in our lives. Last month I found a job, but due to paperwork and the change of place, I won’t be able to start until next month. I swear this time it will be different, that I will be able to stay fresh, focused and committed to it. I have the tools now, and I have medical help.
So, what will I use the money for?
1. I will pay everything related to my change of place. The new rent, which will be at least 50% higher than the last. We were very lucky to find our current place at its current price, but pricing is usually higher than what we currently pay. The repairs my old and new apartment need, the moving itself and whatever comes in the way related to the matter.
2. I will pay medical bills. Both my girlfriend and I need professional help from a psychologist and a psychiatrist to tackle our respective mental disorders. Fortunately, professional help is not as expensive here. Also, my girlfriend has some other medical conditions that need treament.
3. I will take our cat to the veterinary. She is 12 years old and she has been getting thin lately, I’m worried. We are worried.
4. I don’t think that this will be the case but If I happen to have money left from you guys after I do these three things, I promise I will use it to help other people in a meaningful way. And that even if there is no more of this money, I will help other people whenever I can.
The last years of my life have been a disaster and ever since I found out about my ADHD and started taking my medication and working with it, I feel like a new man. I feel strong, I feel joyful, depression is gone, my dreams are returning, my hopes are high, and my will is strong. I want to retake school and don’t leave until I finish, I want to build a nice place to live in, I want to put my creativity in action and write novels or retake my businesses, I want to use the knowledge I have acquired in this adventure to help other people, I want to learn more, be more! I want to make the woman that has kept me alive all these years, happy, return her the favor. I want, I need a fresh start, we need a second chance… and all we need to do it is some money.
Without the money, what will probably happen is that my girlfriend will return to live with her parents, and I will never see her again and she will not be able to fulfill her dreams the way she should and deserves. Her parents live far away from the university, they don’t understand her bipolar disorder and will push her in ways that will not be healthy. Don’t get me wrong, tough, her parents are great people, but their circumstances are not the best for her.
I, on the other hand, will have to go live with my grandparents and the rest of my family. School will no longer be an option to me, and I will probably hate myself for the rest of my life for having failed the woman I love and took care of me for so many years and… I will have failed myself, all because of certain circumstances, because I didn’t know I had a mental disorder. My entire life be will fall apart, everything I know and value and want it to be, will be gone. My dreams crushed once more. I don’t have the strength and I don’t think it is fair for her either. I need your help, people from the Internet, I desperately need it because there is no way I can make as much money in the time I have left, trust me, I have tried. I don’t have the tools to do that yet. I’m not asking for much, I hope.
If you read everything, even if you don’t want to or can’t help me, you have my thanks anyway, for taking your time to listen to me. If, on the contrary, you are going to help me, I have no words to explain how grateful I will be, you will be savaging my present and my future. I sincerely wish you the best, to you all.
Here is my Paypal: https://paypal.me/DUSO93