The price of endless energy: The prescription Adderall epidemic

"Club Med: Dispatches from the Adderall Epidemic" is a 12,000 word series of essays on Adderall's pervasive influence across various facets of American life, from the hyper-competitive environments of Silicon Valley and Wall Street to the pressures of academic and creative fields. It covers the recent rise in ADHD diagnoses and the consequent spike in prescription amphetamine usage.


  • "My first Adderall prescription felt like an explosion of pure possibility. I could do more than that. I started working all the time, writing, reading more than I ever had."
  • "Adderall helped me become a writer but made me an obsessive and indulgent one. It helped me read while impairing my memory. It made me a hard-working but unpredictable employee."
  • "On Adderall, everything is interesting. This is one reason my Adderall essay was doomed from its inception."
  • "Adderall's efficacy for treating ADHD and its popularity among the Professional Managerial Class has helped obscure what a strange and deleterious drug it can be. Highly addictive, the returns it delivers are steadily diminishing, and the risks of heart disease and psychosis increase by the year."
  • "Certainly taking Adderall all night and drinking to fall asleep and then taking more Adderall to pretend to function at my largely fake job promoting various lifestyle products had its pleasures. But more and more often, I just felt haunted and unwell."
  • "The drastic increase in Adderall use hasn't raised nearly as much uproar as the national shortage it helped cause. Productivity declined by 3%. Twitter started to suck. People not on Adderall started unwittingly dabbling in meth."
  • "Adderall became my only hope—the hope that any one burst of hyperfunction could spring me out of obscurity. This hope renewed itself daily and kept me from acknowledging all signs that the drug was at best an imperfect fit."

    Via The Browser.