Negotiation and Setting Boundaries

I posted recently about bed times and got several questions about how to get bedtimes aligned better.  I work with couples on this issue with great regularity - those with ADHD often go to bed late, while exhausted non-ADHD partners often go to bed early.  Couples miss out on good time to connect when they hit the bedroom at different times.  Here are some ideas to help:

I recently heard from a couple with several children, one of whom has ADHD.  The husband also has ADHD and is struggling to get his symptoms under control.  He rarely follows up on what he promises to do, which is driving his wife crazy.  She is responding with typical parent/child dynamics - taking over everything he isn't doing, and getting on his case about his failures in angry and belittling ways.  In this context, the husband asked the question "Should we tell our kids about my ADHD?  My wife is concerned that she is always coming across as the bad guy, rather than me."  Hold up there!  Let's discuss both the question and the answer!

This is the first of two posts about porn use.  The first is to shed light on why your partner is having so much trouble getting past your porn use.  The second, which will be written much later (Jan '14??) will be about what couples can do to help heal their relationships after porn use has pulled their relationships apart. 

First, What is Porn?

To quote the Supreme Court, “I know it when I see it.”  If your wife thinks it’s porn, you need to consider her opinion, even if you don’t agree.  The issue is whether or not she’s distressed by it…so don’t get into an argument about whether or not something you’ve been viewing is all that bad.

So, why does porn hurt so much? I’ve been dealing with this issue with a number of my couples recently.  Here’s a synopsis of what some women have told me:

I just read a terrific article about how to better understand your ADHD or non-ADHD partner's sense of time - since it is most likely different from yours!  Yours, Mine and Hours can be read at this link and is well worth the few minutes it takes to read it.

One of the participants of my couples course recently asked me “You talk about how important it is the measure how you are both doing against your goals…but what does that look like, exactly?”  It’s a great question about a really important part of moving your relationship forward.  Here’s how our conversation started, with a specific example so you all know what I’m referring to:

Me:  Let’s talk about something very specific as an example.  Tell me what one of your own goals is.

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