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"ADHD with rpg and wargaming...can it work?" Topic

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833 hits since 29 Mar 2012
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Rogzombie Fezian29 Mar 2012 7:11 p.m. PST

I am within inches of being diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. I also love gaming more than almost anything you can do on earth(You dont have to think hard to get the first). But the distractions and forgetful nature of adhd has made it very hard for me to learn and keep the rules in my head. Has anyone else encountered a problem like this or should I turn to word search puzzles?

napthyme Sponsoring Member of TMP29 Mar 2012 7:15 p.m. PST

I had a guy who played with us with similar problems plus the one that mixes the letters up in every word.

While he couldn't DM/GM he did do fine as a player, so stick with what your comfortable with.

recon3529 Mar 2012 8:04 p.m. PST

Find a set of rules that don't have you sitting around waiting for the other person to complete a turn, without anything to do, like Ambush Alley's stuff. May help keep your attention better. You could also chase your Ritalin with Espresso, as the stimulant usually helps focus you in as well. The HD part of my ADHD has diminished as I have gotten older (of course, back in the day, there was no such thing as ADD/ADHD, so I just got the crap beat out of me by my teachers) but the ADD thing is still a struggle at times.

Rogzombie Fezian29 Mar 2012 8:21 p.m. PST

My biggest problem is keeping interested long enough to learn the rules. I havent been medicated yet so I hope that I will have a better chance if I am. I so miss rolling the 20s!

I can see how being just a player would work a lot better but the competition is thin around here so I usually introduce the games or used to anyway.

Rich Trevino Inactive Member29 Mar 2012 10:15 p.m. PST

Which games/rules do you play?

I grew up with ADHD. I have to admit that I play mostly by "feel," always looking for the "brilliant" stroke instead of being completely analytical about my moves. I think wargaming (playing, learning, painting) has helped me to become more focused.

Mapleleaf Inactive Member29 Mar 2012 11:15 p.m. PST

Roger take this as an opportunity to simplify your approach to rules.

Personally I am finding it more difficult to cope with the ever growing complexity in newer rules set, particularly with WW2 and later. I tend to rely on the Quick Reference sheets and if things get too complicated during a game with a rules question we decide by a dice roll. This keeps the game flowing – later on we can check to see what the rules actually say and then know for future games.

This way you do not have to memorize rules but have the basic info right in front of you allowing you to focus on tactics.

GarrisonMiniatures Inactive Member30 Mar 2012 2:11 a.m. PST

I teach kids with ADHD – and it's surprising how well they can concentrate on something that grabs their attention. Basically, fast and furious is the answer – keep away from 'slow' games. Computer games also work well, especially shoot 'em up types.

GarrisonMiniatures Inactive Member30 Mar 2012 2:29 a.m. PST

Incidentally, I am surprised that you are now within inches away from being diagnosed. Don't know how old you are, but as your profile says you've been on TMP since 2001 that would put you at least, say, 21. At least. ADHD is not something that creeps up on you – by definition, the symptoms have had to be present since the age of 7 at the latest. Also, as people reach their late teens they usually evolve strategies to reduce the effects. As such, a diagnosis of ADHD at your age would be very unusual. I've attached a link showing the most used definition.

Note, for example, 'B. Some hyperactivity – impulsive or inattentive symptoms that cause impairment were present before the age of 7 years.'

So if you have got ADHD, I would be asking why it wasn't diagnosed a long time ago.


OldGrenadier at work30 Mar 2012 4:30 a.m. PST

Rob, I am inches away from being diagnosed with an autism-spectrum disorder, and I'm 49. The idea is that you know there's something not quite "normal" but you can't put your finger on it. Eventually, you break down and go to a doctor, which I havent done officially yet. My kid's doc has unofficially said that he'd diagnose me that way because of some behaviors that I display. That's how you end up being 'inches away'. BTW, both of my younger kids are diagnosed with PDD-NOS, and my son (the youngest) also has Aspergers.

I agree with your suggestions for games, although I've actually managed to slog through about 3 game-years of World in Flames before, usually in one or two turn increments.

Who asked this joker30 Mar 2012 6:32 a.m. PST

I teach kids with ADHD and it's surprising how well they can concentrate on something that grabs their attention.

I was just going to suggest sticking with fast moving games that you are most interested in. Most kids with attention problems can still sit for hours and play video games as an example.

So, I suspect you will get on fine with playing simple miniature games that move quickly.

GarrisonMiniatures Inactive Member30 Mar 2012 7:28 a.m. PST

Autistic Spectrum different to ADHD and covers a multitude of things – that can take a long time to diagnose. All the best in the future. 'Basic' and very crude one for Autisic Spectrum would be taking things very literally and finding change difficult.

Jovian1 Inactive Member30 Mar 2012 7:44 a.m. PST

I have ADHD and I don't have issues with gaming and if you work at it you can actually hyper focus on gaming and you would be amazed at the things you can do. It takes work and effort and continuous refocusing of your energies but it can be done.

ETenebrisLux30 Mar 2012 2:13 p.m. PST

Knowing is half the battle.

Being aware of your strengths (quick minded & imaginative too I suspect), and your weaknesses (easily distracted, lack of focus), makes you better at everything in life.

Princeps Inactive Member31 Mar 2012 3:04 a.m. PST

My eldest son has ADHD. Playing games helps him concentrate better (much as Jovian 1 describes). When he is playing a game with me he can actually shut out the rest of the world.

Rogzombie Fezian31 Mar 2012 9:47 a.m. PST

I am 52.I have done a lot of research on adhd, Rob. If you have as well or are a professional you should know adhd was not commonly associated with adults until probably the 90s. It was there but doctors didnt take it seriously. It just wasn't something that was considered during the earlier parts of my life. Also I was thrust into situations of extreme coaching(I assume you know what that means) with an over bearing girlfriend and jobs that pushed me constantly because of their deadline oriented nature. But thru it all I was angry, hard to make relationships, etc, almost everything else in the book like it was my life story.
My point is how can you go to get analyzed when you know nothing of the disorder? Later in my life I became a freelancer which put the onus on me to account for myself and it has become increasingly difficult as things get more complicated. ADHDers learn to compensate naturally for some things too, such as what we are discussing about the games.
My biggest compensation done without knowing was learning to drive safe. I had a lot of small fender benders as a young man, no real big wrecks but I have become a very defensive driver to compensate while having no idea this was compensating for a psychological disorder.

Thanks for the gaming tips, guys! I am actually looking at beginners rule sets that are simpler. Maybe big games like D&D Pathfinder etc but the beginning rules that are simplified. I like some of the simple free rules you can find. I guess though some systems are just too complex for me. Games with a lot of modifiers are very troublesome. I like the idea of games that allow more time for strategy.

BTW I took the standard test with a psychologist and got well into the clinical definition of adhd but I already knew that. I've taken every test online that seemed reputable and am reading several good books on the matter.

I hate how people are skeptical of adhd, I also hate how people blow it off as a childhood condition. I hate even more when people try to put a positive spin on it that it is a gift. It impairs your brain for gods sake!

Rogzombie Fezian26 Jul 2015 6:32 p.m. PST

Three years later and I feel like it is worse. I tried all the drugs, they all gave me terrible allergic reactions.
The counseling and books dont help. I took one of the amphetemine based drugs and it gave me three times the mind I usually have. But it effected my heart so I have gone back to feeling like a moron knowing that I am missing 2/3rds of my brain. Everything has pretty much gone to hell since then…

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