• Quote of the Day
    "Don't let what you can't do interfere with what you can do."
    John Wooden, posted by David Baxter

BigBrother

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Joined
Nov 30, 2004
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Hi all. This is my first post here, although I joined up ago.

I'm having trouble with my memory, and would like to know what I could do to improve it, if there really is anything that works. I haven't tried anrything yet.

I'm male, 35. I drink occasionally, don't smoke except marijuana occasionally (2-3 joints a week at most). I used to smoke a lot more, but haven't been a heavy smoker for few couple of years now.

So my problem is that I often forget agreements I make with my wife. Plans we make, and so on. This causes friction between us of course. Of course I forget all kinds of things as well, that's just an example.

I forget conversations almost immediately. I may remember the results of that chat, but I couldn't repeat any of it - in contrast my wife can do that. This makes me terrible at telling stories, or events, as I get the details confused and often miss important parts.

I've always been forgetful, from early childhood, and also have poor concentration - I get very easily distracted and find it hard to focus and apply myself to difficult tasks. My wife tells me I've been getting worse, it's hard for me to judge.

I work in software engineering, as a freelancer from home, and my work is usually in projects that run for a number of weeks. I also have problems remember details about the work I'm doing, although I try to write such things down to get around that problem.

I'm not sure what other info I could give that would be relevant? I have 3 brothers, I'm the eldest and the next one I think has similar issues, although I haven't talked to him about it. My dad who's in his late 60s is also very forgetful.

So is this just the way I am? Or is it something I can work on to improve - or maybe take something for?

Thanks for your time reading this and for any help or advice you can give.
 

David Baxter

Administrator
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Mar 26, 2004
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I've always been forgetful, from early childhood, and also have poor concentration - I get very easily distracted and find it hard to focus and apply myself to difficult tasks. My wife tells me I've been getting worse, it's hard for me to judge.

A lot of times, what first appears to be a "memory problem" turns out to be really a concentration or attention problem. If the information doesn't get into short-term memory in a manner that makes it accessible to subsequent processing into long-term memory, you won't be able to retrieve it, even though there's nothing wrong with your memory per se. This could be caused by having a lot going on at the time - if your wife is telling you something while you are trying to work, or watching TV, or thinking about something else, or while you or she is on the way out the door, you won't remember because in truth you're distracted and only half listening.

I would suggest several things:

1. ask your doctor for a referral to be assessed for adult ADHD; and/or

2. ask your doctor for a referral to a neurologist to rule out other physical causes for problems with attention or memory.
 

BigBrother

Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2004
Messages
2
Points
1
Hi David - thanks very much for taking the time to give advice.

I believe what you say about sometimes you're only half listening because you're occupied doing something else when the thing you forgot was said - but in my case I can forget things said to me, or by me, when I'm sitting down with someone just having a conversation. That is to say, with no distractions to speak of.

I'd heard the term ADHD and ADD before, but never really knew what they meant so I've been looking them up online.
And most of what I read sounded very familiar to me - I recognised many of those symptoms. Struggling to understand things, difficulty in following group conversations, concentration problems with school work when I was younger, and with my work now, and occasionally zoning out while sitting with people - and feeling foolish when they catch me doing it, and other things too.
I've never been hyperactive though. Heh, almost the complete opposite in fact.

So I'll look into what I need to do to get a proper diagnosis for ADD.

Thanks again, I'll post back when I get somewhere.
 

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