The Adderall Diaries


Somebody once called the law a jealous mistress, although I can’t recall who (maybe it was the guy whose dead body is on display at University College London and in a photo on page 330 of my Property textbook). In any case, it’s totally true. And I’m afraid my mistress is going to dump me unless I can get my hands on a legal source of Adderall.

Anyone who assumes I spend all my spare time agonizing over men is only half right.


In reality, I roam Chicago’s streets on a quest for two things: (i) a husband; and (ii) an Adderall prescription. I wouldn’t be opposed to killing both birds with one stone. Though a shrink might make a depressing husband, so it’s probably best to keep my searches separate.

I’ll freely admit (from the safety of my pseudonym) that I’m no stranger to self-medicating with other people’s pharmaceuticals. Throughout childhood, my grandmother had a kitchen cabinet bursting with Valium from a rather diverse group of doctors (I remain awed that she was able to wrangle benzos from her dermatologist). In high school, so many kids were willing to sell their Ritalin that it seemed harder to avoid than obtain (although some of the sources were admittedly dubious—my dad once found a stash of yellow pills in my jewelry box and claimed a pharmacist identified them as blood pressure medication). In college, my boyfriend of three years hit the jackpot by securing an ADHD diagnosis from his psychiatrist dad, which meant constant access to (genuine) Ritalin and Adderall.

As a result, I’ve logged many hours studying, writing papers, taking tests, and grinding out work product while enjoying the benefits of contraband ADD meds. In fact, I’m pretty sure Adderall was more integral than BarBri to my having passed the bar exam.

But here’s the problem. There’s an inverse relationship between age and access to Adderall. I didn’t have much of a problem during law school, because my younger sister was still in college back then. But now that she graduated from the ceaselessly gushing geyser of Adderall that is Miami of Ohio, my supply has dried up—and the timing could not be worse.

Think about it. How am I supposed to grind through 2,350 billables a year while squeezing in enough gym visits to keep my body dating-worthy and finding the time and energy to be meaningfully present in bars and other places where I can encounter potential husbands?

I’ve been left with no recourse but to try to locate a legal source of Adderall. Overall, it seems to be the least risky option. I mean, I’ve racked my brain, but I can’t come up with a professionally acceptable way to ask a co-worker if they know where I could score some Adderall. Nor do I think it’s a good idea to linger outside of the nearest high school, casually asking students whether they’ve got any Adderall for sale.

What’s even more shameful, I’ve already encountered my first major roadblock. At my bi-weekly shrink appointment last week, I launched into a soliloquy about the attention issues “I’ve always dealt with but have been too shy to mention.” I cited the negative write-ups in my grade school report cards (e.g. “[LF10] likes to entertain others and it becomes distracting during class” and “[LF10] can’t seem to control her talking and this is a problem”) as early evidence of ADD.

But, much to my dismay, my doctor didn’t buy it (I guess I’m the one lawyer out there who sucks at lying). When I finished my inspired performance, she stared at me for a few uncomfortable seconds and then explained, “I’m very hesitant to prescribe ADD medication to high-achieving and high-performing people like you. It seems to me that you’re seeking artificial cognitive enhancement rather than treatment for an actual disorder.” With that, I slunk out of her office, uneasy with the feeling of having been caught red-handed.

I then spent the rest of the afternoon at work completely distracted. Which of course made me feel rather triumphant because my inability to focus on anything other than obtaining Adderall seemed to be clear evidence of ADD. There must be a doctor out there who would agree that I have ADD. I’m going to have to find him or her, schedule an appointment, and then stick to a script that I will develop with the help of the DSM-IV. With any luck, this will work. And hopefully this doesn’t constitute doctor shopping—wait, does it?!

Law Firm 10 may lack the dazzling, magnetic charisma of a girl from the hottest sorority in school, but she (arguably) makes up for that with her wit, humor, and low-maintenance-ness. Read more from Law Firm 10.

29 Comments

  1. Quadoz

    May 31, 2011 at 11:40 am

    Hahaha, there’s a name for this behavior. You’re a Pill head.. http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=pill%20head

    Just stick with whiskey. Don’t get burned at work risking it for some pills.

    Quadoz,
    City cop by midnight, Rookie lawyer by day

  2. Eventual Lawyer

    May 31, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    This makes me sick. I’m mostly very easygoing about most subjects, but it pisses me off when people abuse prescription drugs to gain an advantage over other people. People that actually need Adderall face a negative stigma because of people like you–those that abuse it just to churn out the work.

    • BL1Y

      May 31, 2011 at 1:31 pm

      Hold on …a doctor didn’t prescribe amphetamines to someone who basically straight up asked for them?

      Shock!

      No wonder LF10 can’t get a man, she can’t even get one of the most over-prescribed drugs.

      • Strenuous Objector

        June 2, 2011 at 7:21 am

        For how long have we all known that there’s obviously a much larger problem with LF10 than just lack of pick up skills. I mean, I’ve found it difficult to believe that a “LF10″ couldn’t find a guy, especially with how low some guy’s standards are, but the lack of persuasive skills and self-medication sure help to explain some of the discrepancies.

    • L

      August 17, 2012 at 2:24 pm

      THANK YOU!

      The other night on my train, I overheard a group of college girls talking about finding Adderall. I have legitimate ADHD and it took all I had not to turn around and give them a piece of my mind. Prescriptions such as these are out there for people who NEED them and cannot do work without them. Not people who would just like to have them. This disgusts me.

  3. Guano Dubango

    May 31, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    If you really are a “10″, I would like to date you. I can help you get over any other addiction, other than maybe an addiction to me!

  4. Cheese Head

    May 31, 2011 at 2:05 pm

    Two things come to mind….either you’re an addict, in which case unless you get help – you will likely find the wrong husband (because those we attract are in direct proportion to how healthy we are) ….or you really do have ADD/ ADHD and your self medicating was helping you manage a real disorder…If I were you – I’d find another doc willing to at least give you the test. Depending on the doc, you might try being honest about your usesage. BTW – I wouldn’t have passed the bar without adderall either…which incidentally is how I finally concluded that I had the disorder. That’s another story. I get mine legally – and so should you lest you risk everything getting it from the wrong source. peace.

  5. MagicCircleJerk

    May 31, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    Let me know when you figure out an answer. I face the same dillemma as I age.

  6. Verna

    May 31, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    I also have a dilemna. Does anyone here know if a woman can safely be labelled a virgin if she has done everything BUT procreative sex?

    I am falling into that catagory, and want to be able to tell others I am technically a virgin, but I worry that I am not being truthful. Anyone agree with me?

    • lmac

      September 29, 2011 at 2:03 pm

      I think you’re fine.

      Some people may quibble about the lusts of the heart, but technically – virgin.

  7. manda

    May 31, 2011 at 8:01 pm

    I had that property book, too! i don’t think we read that chapter though, so not really sure why he’s in there.

    try xanax. it makes you a tiny bit sleepy but keeps your head from filling up with bullshit

  8. Ambulancechaser

    May 31, 2011 at 8:19 pm

    self medication is key

  9. derp

    June 8, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    See your family practitioner/internal medicine/general physician. If you don’t have one, make an appointment to start seeing one. Just the generic do-it-all doctor who would check on your sore throat. That’s who prescribes my Adderall, and this is the way in which I got it.

    “What brings you here today?”

    “You know, I’d really like a prescription for Adderall. I obtain some from friends, from time to time, and it significantly assists me with my work. I’m comfortable under its effects, I know what dosage works for me…” et. cetera

    There’s no need for semantic underhanded-ness, and it reflects well upon you, in the then-and-there, to not complicate or inject awkwardness into the routine procedure of asking one’s doctor to prescribe a particular medication.

    Asking for something in particular is a regular occurrence in the doctor’s office and, this is of great importance to bear on ones conscience and consciousness, definitely *not* an endeavour that should have the flavors of the undercurrent emotions in occurrences like, say, patronizing a drug dealer.

    TL;DR

    Buck up and ask a regular doctor. You don’t need a sheet off your therapist’s prescription pad. Get the branded Adderall if you can, because they come in tasteless capsules. Generic pills are uncoated and have a very unpleasant taste.

  10. leah

    August 8, 2011 at 11:02 am

    Honey, you need to persevere. During 2L, my attempt to wrangle an ADHD diagnosis out of the douchey student health services shrink failed miserably. Apparently, I was too high-achieving to qualify. In vain I tried to explain that my MA degree was not so much an achievement but a consolation prize for dropping out of a PhD program.
    Refusing to accept defeat, I tried again right before the bar. Different doc, and this time armed with report cards dating back to first grade. Each one described my inability to focus and failure to work at my full potential. Whether or not my legit adderall Rx was as critical to success as BarBri remains to be seen (will know as of 11/18/11).

    • lmac

      September 29, 2011 at 3:54 pm

      I second that. I was diagnosed in high school but decided not to medicate because it never interfered with my academic performance until law school started kicking the crap out of me.

      I went to my student health and was told by the first doctor that a lot of high-performers feel pressured to stay on top but that not everyone could be top ten. I just wanted to get through my reading before 9PM, I didn’t need a lecture on ego.

      Second doctor considered the fact that law school requires more focus, and that I had developed coping skills for undergrad and high school that just weren’t enough for law school. I told her I had always been nervous about using a prescription but had tried a friend’s and liked the focus but wasn’t sure I needed a high dose, and she wrote me a prescription.

  11. Hank

    August 8, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    You dopey broads ought to buck up and learn to deal. Either that or just let the guy take over in the driver’s seat.

    • lmac

      September 29, 2011 at 2:00 pm

      As if men and women have the same amount of time to devote to being productive to begin with.

      I don’t advocate abusing amphetamines, but it’s not at all uncommon to use something like caffeine to get through your day.

      I’m also not a raging feminist, but until women can successfully date -or work- on a man’s grooming routine, we will have to be more productive in fewer available hours. Just think for a minute about how many hours a day a woman seeking a career and a spouse has to dedicate to things men don’t have to worry about. Basic grooming, for example, takes longer for a woman for both work and dating. Men shower, shave, maybe workout, match their geranimals, and can go out on a Friday night in the same shirt and tie they worked in. To be taken seriously at work, women have to be polished – even if you’re not an every hair in place kind of girl – hairstyling beyond gel, shaving legs, basic makeup are all things men don’t have to deal with before work. But to date? Add at least 30 minutes to your timeline, if not more, often a second shower, a second outfit. This is just an example; a very tiny aspect of dating and working as a woman that men don’t deal with. We lose time to do both that men don’t, so to be “as productive” we have to be more productive in less hours. Just imagine, losing 15 minutes of your morning routine to hair and makeup and 30 minutes for each date. If you had a date a week, you’re losing an hour and forty-five could-have-been billable hours just to meet the social standards for dating and work. Just take two hours out of your work or dating life each week and try to keep up your standard productivity in either, then you can talk a little shit about bucking up.

  12. Evil Lawyer

    August 8, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    Cost-free aLternatives to adderal: imagine..

    1. what its like to be fired and have only enough money saved to pay rent for two months;

    2. how humilating it will be to walk thru a market knowing you can’t buy whatever you want: and having to “sample” some giveaways or small peaches as dinner;

    3. what its like when all your friends try to reach you and are told “She’s no longer here.”

    4. When you realize that having that putting out for that balding paunchy guy is the fastest way to a roof over your head.

    Still having trouble “concentrating?”

  13. chicagoan

    September 14, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    jeeezzzzzz seems like most of the people that make comments disprove of your quest…
    My guess is that they are being a bit close minded and maybe even jealous?
    Studies have shown that ADHD is a disorder that is UNDERdiagnosed, so you may very well display symptoms. I also got through college with the aid of contraband RX, without it, I would have undoubtedly been so distracted that I would have been unable to graduate with a decent GPA. It didnt give me an unfair advantage, nor did the pills take any tests for me, it simply enhanced my ability to STUDY as a person who can concentrate would.
    Would you disapprove of someone taking medicine for pain killers if they had a recent injury? no, they still need to have a sense of normalcy.
    Same logic applies.

    ps. if you find someone in the area that is relatively cheap plx lemme know

    • L

      August 17, 2012 at 2:26 pm

      You couldn’t be more wrong.

      ADD and ADHD are OVERdiagnosed. Likely because of people like LF10.

  14. big bo

    October 1, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    I get 180 30mg adds every three months, I don’t take them. I only take them when I have a lot of important things to do. I have more adderol then the law allows in most states. I would be glad to find a lady that needs my help but I am not a drug dealer norwood I give them away to someone without a prescription I find that people who take aderol everyday get to the point where they can not get out of bed without taking the pill I suggest taking 5 hour energy without the crash I’ve taken and found it to be very similar and also helps with erectile dysfunction also try is an ex as it is very effective incoming your nerves which sometimes is the problem when you cannot concentrate but if none of this works for you call 1 800 flowers in send yourself some flowers in that may make yourself feel better I hope all of you kill a heads find a way to secure your amphetamines .this is why it is hard for people who need the medication to get it because of all you fake people out there looking for something to keep you going try caffeine I wish all of you would just stop 1 of my friends must insert adarol into his anus to get the effects that is the problem you get a tolerance and once you build your tolerance it is all about chasing the high.

  15. Tiffany

    October 3, 2011 at 9:03 am

    Dude….what?

  16. jdub

    March 29, 2012 at 4:24 pm

    I find it odd that barely any mention is made here about the criminality of drug-seeking behaviour like this. Adderall is schedule II in the United States if I’m not mistaken. Whatever public opinion might be, do you imagine a police officer letting it slide? Do you think the conversation you’ll have explaining the conviction to, well anyone, will be comfortable?

    Nevermind your career, Adderall abuse is incredibly dangerous. Notice how I didn’t soften or qualify that statement? It’s not that it ‘could’ be dangerous or that you ‘may’ suffer very undesirable side effects. The cardio-respiratory effect of any form of amphetamine is profound. You may also want to consider that, as Adderall produces insomnia, a sleep-starved brain lacking a proper balance of neurotransmitters will inhibit cognition and memory formation, so you could possibly achieve the exact opposite of your intention.

    In South Africa where I live and study law, this medication is simply illegal. End of story. Like heroin and the erstwhile status of marijuana in the United States, it is seen as having absolutely no justifiable medical use.

    Of course none of this should be accepted as proof that Adderall is ‘bad’ or that it cannot be taken safely. It is, however, not safe to self-medicate. It’s even less safe, for obvious reasons, to obtain medication from black market sources.

    The line between acceptable, legal and safe therapeutic use and felonious cognitive doping begins with a psychiatrist. As was recommended above, just be honest. Trying to manipulate your way into getting a prescription will more often than not be noticeable and neither appreciated nor successful. As with any testimony, the more self-depricating and self-effacing the admissions, the more compelling it will sound… Nowadays psychiatrists are well aware that many people who abuse drugs (of all kinds) may be self-medicating actual disorders that affect their lives. It may very well be that you have ADD or ADHD, and could benefit from therapeutic use of stimulants. I sure as hell do!

  17. Kristen

    April 12, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    I don’t get why people don’t just go to a psychiatrist and get it legally. Even without health insurance (which some law schools require), the shrink visits + scripts will level out to the “street” price of what you will pay over time. If you have insurance, this should be a no brainer. I am a law school dropout from University of Detroit (where I’ve never seen so much a-kissing), so I can totally relate. I wouldn’t have made it the 2 pt time years I did (whilst working full time) without chemical assistance. But, know your body, educate yourself on side effects, and some organic chemistry. You can find a good shrink by going to or calling up your school’s psychiatry department (which I’m assuming they have if they have a law school) and asking for a referral.

  18. S-I

    April 19, 2012 at 4:35 pm

    The one who called law a jealous mistress is Lawrence Sawell in his song ‘All I want for Christmas is a stomach lining”. The album is out on Spotify, perfect for late-night billing!

  19. KrazyKid

    April 20, 2012 at 9:37 am

    This may be sad….but I spent the whole article envying you rather than feeling sorry for you.
    I’m a Caribbean law trainee in my final LEC exams before I am admitted to the bar and my whole 5 yr tenure included me begging for Adderall or Ritalin because of what I’ve read and heard about it. Unfortunately it is not as easy to come by here.

    Even went to a shrink who just told me I have some kind of a complex …. which I’d rather not disclose.

    I’ve never been on the stuff and I feel the way you do. You’re not addicted so much….you’re just in need.

  20. JDJD

    June 8, 2012 at 12:03 am

    If you have a doctor that you have a good and honest relationship with. I would just ask. FYI, Adderral is also used for chronic fatigue disorders, narcolepsy, and a handful of other “off-label” uses. Tell him what you’re going through. There are plenty of Doctors out there who will prescribe for you, but in most states they will only allow you to get a one month supply at a time and you aren’t allowed to get refills. If you don’t have a doctor that you have a good relationship with, start shopping for one. I’m not talking about a pill mill. I’m talking about a legit doctor who you can be honest with. He or she will want to monitor you closely, but if you’re honest and you look hard enough you can probably find someone who is a good fit for you and will help you out. Also since you’ve already taken it in the past, tell him (or her) that. If you’re nervous about telling him that, you can always just leave it at “I’ve taken it in the past.” Probably best to tell him that it wasn’t legit prescribed. I wouldn’t recommend it myself, but you could always just say you’ve been on it in the past and it really helped you. As long as you have the right doc and you don’t try to lie to him, he might just write you a scrip on the spot. Mine did. I wouldn’t have made it through law school without it. I don’t have ADD, I have chronic fatigue (but not epstein barr). I just talked to my doc and I’m so glad that I did. Also there are other drugs like nuvigil and provigil (google modanafil) that are not schedule II that a doctor might be more willing to prescribe. Just food for thought. Not all drugs are bad. You just have to keep things in moderation. I don’t understand why people insist on branding drugs bad or good. At least adderral has been around forever. You know what you’re getting and because it’s been around so long, that they know what the side effects are. Can’t say that for most drugs. Just don’t abuse!!!

  21. Dawn V.

    June 19, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    I didn’t get diagnosed until my oldest son was in kindergarten and HE was diagnosed. His pediatrician, who had been treating him since birth and knew me very well, pointed out that he inherited it from me. I was shocked! I really was. I had always done very well in school. On the other hand, I was in the “Talented and Gifted” program that was made up of very small classes or independent study for most of my childhood education. I also had very strict parents who believed in corporal punishment. After school, I went through job after job, quitting when I got bored, ready to try something new. I also moved a lot, wanting a change in environment. I tried college but changed my major several times and finally dropped out. I ended up married young with children, working menial jobs and receiving state assistance at times, even getting food from the local food pantry occasionally to help feed my family because I made so little, and my first husband didn’t make anything most of the time.

    After I was diagnosed and given a prescription for Ritalin, I went back to college, graduated with honors with a double major and a minor. Then I went to law school, where I also graduated with honors while working and raising my children (I got divorced during all of this too, and he was not the child support paying kind’ve dad). I couldn’t have done it without Ritalin, and then Adderall. I never asked for special accommodations because I felt like having access to the medication was enough.

    I am still on Adderall now (I tried Vyvanse but it didn’t work as well for me), and I own a law office that is pretty successful. If you need it, you need it. I’ve seen people take it who don’t need it, and it is obvious. I can take it and fall asleep. I am calmer on it. The people who abuse it are hyper and irritable. If you really think that you have it, don’t be ashamed to ask for it.

  22. DW

    August 21, 2013 at 11:16 am

    You got good grades in law school (presumably good enough to get a job with a billable hour requirement), and passed the bar because of adderall, while other people who didn’t CHEAT in law school with DRUGS didn’t perform as well and now have jobs that aren’t as good. I’m sorry that now you have trouble focusing at your (probably) high-paying and prestigious job. No sympathy at all.

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