New member with a long history
Submitted by ADD_Dad on Mon, 10/24/2011 - 14:45
It's really lonely where I'm sitting here this afternoon. I had suspicions that I had ADD for years, but finally talked to my doctor about taking something for it about a year ago. I taught myself coping skills to deal with my symptoms, regulated video game time, alone time, 8 hours of sleep a night. But my wife and I decided to foster-to-adopt three siblings. I found myself in a place where I didn't have time for any of my coping skills, so I finally talked to my doctor and asked for medicinal help. I'm on medicine now, and doing much better. But I find myself in a place where after 14 years, my wife no longer has any patience for me. She's so full of anger, resentment, and pain that every little mistake I make is amplified.
I read enough from this site and others to know that I am responsible for and can only change myself. I know I have to make the change, and show that I've made the change to my wife for her to be able to trust that I'm changing and not just offering empty words and broken promises. I need to show her a change so she no longer feels like she has to be the parent.
In no way am I trying to fish for reassurances; I've hurt my wife, regardless of the circumstances. She has every right to feel however she wants. What I am hoping for is some strategies to deal with her anger, pain, resentfulness.
It's tough because before we got our boys, my wife was a TSS (theraputic staff support) working in schools with kids with disabilites (ADHD, Autism spectrum disorder, ODD, etc.). She was able to teach every ADHD child she worked with coping skills and life strategies; enough for them to be discharged from services (meaning they didn't need one-on-one support in the classrooms anymre). This is a double-edged sword because she can help me with coping skills, but, when I don't follow up on those skills, or instantly make the change, she gets frustrated. I realized it isn't healthy for our relationship to put her into the position of parent, wife, and therapist, so I've done everything in my power to NOT ask her for that sort of help. But her work and successes has shaped her opinions of this disorder. She watched the episode of Dr. Oz last with where Dr. Hallowell was on, and she was somewhat disdainful most of the time. She felt that people were using ADD as an excuse for their behavior, and that if they really wanted (read that if I really wanted) to change, I would. It's not that easy for me.
I just need immediate strategies to implement to help show her I'm changing. I know, if there's no change, there's no change. I'm out of ideas.