Adderall addiction/abuse, aggression, living together/ must kick him out.

my partner lives with me and began taking adderall again in may. he has always known of his add and always been on different medications or taken breaks with no medications. he's in his 30's. he was up front with his add when we met. he was a loving, beautiful man and i fell for him totally. since may, his behavior has changed 180 degrees and that seems to coorelate with his increase in adderol. he began w/ 40mg a day...he was intense/standoffish, just being in the same room with him, he kind of bristled. talking to him i was on eggshells. i did not know what was going on and because i didnt make the connection to medication, i thought it was something inside our relationship. in july he added 20 more 20mg pills to his intake and started staying out late at night after work and not doing anything with me as a couple. so at that time he had 80 20mg's of adderall and was finnished with them in less than a month. he then got 30 more and those were gone in ten days. now he's gone to a new doctor, gotten a script for 60 30mg as well as an additional medication--vivance. the doctor was concerned for his racing pulse but gave him the medication anyway. at night his heart races faster than ive ever heard someones.  his intense behavior has bordered on volitile to hostile in these last weeks. he works until midnight, then comes in late-2..3..4 am..does his own thing in the house, bathes and eventually comes to bed around 4/5 am. he has nothing to say, not even 5 minutes to connect with me--either at night or during the day. he sleeps just up to the time he needs to be at work. if i try to connect with him or talk to him when he comes in so late, hes angry, confrontational and hostile. he takes a tone of voice with me that is infuriating. i pay all the bills, take care of the house and, because he is stressed with his own pressures, i dont ask him for much. i get angry at the fact that he disrupts my sleep, doesnt do anything with me--and we are talking months..inst available emotionally and just beside myself w frustration that he is making no acknowledgement of these things or discounts their reality if i try to gently let them know they are hurting me. in fact, being hurt is the one way to ignite his rage. it has become beyond painful to be around this man i love so much.

his behavior patten is whack. he completely starves us as a couple, spends no time with me in or out of the house, has no interest in physical affection, then is full of rage when i ask/inquire with him about these things or say i really miss him and need to spend time with him. he blames me for his rage, holes up in another bedroom, leaves the house without speaking to me. writes me how much he loves me and would never do or say anything intentionally to hurt me. yet the cycle continues night after night. i asked him to leave 2 nites ago. he did. i have not heard from him since and do not know where he is staying.

please tell me that i have done something reasonable in asking him to leave.

does anyone have experience with a partners aggression on adderall? or with them increasing their dosage to a point where it is effecting the relationship this bad? yes, i have told him at different times that this drug is wrecking us and i am worried he will hurt himself. but he is in denial. do i speak to another friend of his about my concern? my partner doesn't think there is any problem. there is clearly a massive problem. it has all but destroyed us but it may be putting him at risk for od or heart attack. he has had shallow breath at times, sweating, some signs of taking to much. i need to know how to approach it with maturity for the highest productive outcome.





Addiction to Adderall

This has not happened to me in my two plus years on Adderall. I found the right dose for me, which can change depending on the day's schedule, but on a normal workday I take 20mg at 5am when I get up, then 20mg around 10-10:30am and the final 10mg dose at around 2:30 - 3pm. If I know I have to finish the day strong because of working late or an evening event, I'll bump my last dose from 10 to 20mg. I am prescribed 60mg a day. On the weekends, if I get to sleep in (RARE) I may only take two 20mg doses. I don't feel like I need more or the effectiveness of the Adderall has lessened since my early days. Of course at first the Adderall "Seemed" to be a magic pill from 43 years of dead tired, oblivious, scattered, late, forgetful, low self esteem ADD Guy. Now I'm used to it's effects and I just had a complete physical and my heart-rate was 65bpm and the BP was 118/75, this was in the a.m. after only Adderall and no breakfast. (Because of the tests)  

Regarding your life as you just described, you have to protect yourself First. He must recognize there is an issue and own it. I believe many ADDer's are prone to addictions and since I was a child I had a 6th sense always warning me that I could become an addict. My failure was an addiction to food. After my ADD diagnosis, food is no longer a problem :) If your husband is seeing multiple doctors it will catch up with him because these are tracked by the Fed. You cannot fix him and you have told him what you fear is happening and I don't know what else you can do. Maybe kicking him out will be the "Wake-Up Call" he needs.

Hang in there...


I totally feel for you. my

I totally feel for you. my husband is 44 and is prescribed 30mg/3x a day (when the maximum dose is 60mg/day), then takes another 2 or 3 pills on top of that before the day is done. I'm at my wits end...when he runs low on his medication, and it isn't time for a refill, he calls up some pill heads and buys more from them. He has promised for the last couple of years or so that "I'm going to wean myself back down to my prescribed dose" , but every time I turn around, I find outdone way or another that he's buying them from people. He says he doesnt know why he takes so many, and i told him that its because hes obviously addicted to it, and theres no consequence to him. all he has to do is go buy them from someone. i have no idea what to do. i truly do love him dearly but it's wearing me so thin..

Is he unwilling to discuss

Is he unwilling to discuss this with his prescribing dr?  Other medications to address impulsivity can be prescribed along with Adderall but a dr can't do it if they don't know what is going on.

On doses, my husband is on 30mg 4x per day. Higher doses are not unheard of.

Totally unwilling...

He is totally unwilling to even admit that there is a problem, much less talk to his dr about it. i have definitely seen a change in his personality from a couple of years ago til now, and unfortunately, its not a good change either. About 6 months or so ago, he wanted to be put on another medication besides Adderall, so I took him to see a psychiatrist that works with adult adhd. She basically explained (or tried to) how he's addicted to the adderall, and is an alchoholic as well. All he did was deny, deny, deny. Long story short, she wanted to place him in inpatient rehab for 30 days to get him straight again, and of course he refused. She gave him a starter pack of Strattera. That was a disaster because he said he felt so lethargic and drowsy he ended up deciding not to go into work and was fired the next day. Next thing I know he's buying the adderall from some "friends" of his again.. The sad thing about it is I can see him spiraling out of control and he either doesnt see it or it just doesnt make a difference to him either way.

Alcoholic and on Adderall?

.. does sound like a disaster. A stimulant and a depressant, no wonder he is craving more of both. Since it's Adderall he must be regularly showing up at the dr in order to get a prescription (if you're in the US, we are and my husband has a 10 min apt with the psych every 30 days, the psych will not write an Adderall prescr without seeing the patient). And your husband's dr is prescribing without knowing the story. Yes, very difficult. Do other people try to talk to him about it?

In denial

He does go to the doctor, who is an md not a psych like I feel he should go to, every 30 days give or take because as you said the dr wont give him an rx unless he sees him first. It seems like everyone that I try to talk to doesnt believe hes like he is. ( He knows how to talk his way in and out of things), and he is so outgoing and friendly when hes socializing with other people. Anytime someone other than myself has brought his drinking issue up to him, all he does is say that although he may buy a 6-12 pack of beer everyday, he pours half of it out or opens the can and forgets about it, which I know for a fact he doesnt. Then to make matters worse, he walks down the street to his friends house (another alchoholic), and sits there drinking and talking for an hour or two...He has already gotten 2 DWIs in the past, and the when the 3rd one happens, he will be locked up for a long time and lose everything. When I non-accusingly try to approach him about my concerns over his drinking and adderall usage, he tries to change the subject or flat out refuses to talk about it. I'm at a definite crossroads here. Do I leave and let him self destruct? Or do I continue to attempt to help steer him in the right direction and try my best to keep him from ruining his life?


d, you can't keep him from ruining his life. Only he can. And he has to want to.  There is alcoholism in my family and I know how destructive and sad it is. 

Every single thing you mention sounds like some pretty serious denial on his part, like "rounding down" the amount he is drinking by suggesting he is not finishing some of his beer, or putting on a good face for the doctor when in fact he may be an alcoholic and abusing his meds. It doesn't mean he is a bad person. It means he is losing control and the meds and alcohol are controlling him.

You have to ask yourself if you are going to enable him or let him take you down with him. Harsh, I know, but what would happen if he got another DWI and hurt someone this time? Not only jail, but maybe a lawsuit that could take everything you have, too. Not to mention the wedge that substance abuse can drive into any family and relationship. I know you know this. I am so sorry. 

I would try to talk to him and tell him that you love him, you don't think he is a bad person, but that you believe he has a serious problem that needs medical attention or some kind of intervention. And that out of love for him, you can't live with him if he continues like this. That you want to help him but he has to help himself and if he won't, you have to separate or leave. And give him a quick deadline. 

My very best to you. Hang in there and get all the help you can for yourself. I echo jenna's alanon suggestion. 


One word for dhaynes

Al-anon....for anyone who is affected with someone else's drinking habits...alcoholic or not.

My heart goes out to you.

My heart goes out to you. Stories like this...just on a basic human-to-human level...make me so sad. How does one human being treat another so poorly and look themselves in the mirror?

Stimulant meds to make my husband hostile and defensive...with a dash of paranoia thrown in for good measure. He only took them from Oct-Feb, but I don't recall him withdrawing and not wanting anything to do with me...but I do remember not wanting to be around him because it as hard to know what I would say that he would take the wrong way and go off on me. what you posted. Ask yourself what you're getting from this relationship. Let him go...and don't let him 'come home' when he is done being 'single' and needs a roof and a meal. You have a chance to start demanding more for yourself...please make the most of it.

yes , it was my case too

he has been taking adderall for years and met him when he had been 2 years on it already. i don't know the real HIM, i only know him on adderall. He canstay focused and obviously adderall raises his IQ but everything else in his life has down-spiraled ever since. I have not only experienced withdrawal on his end, but uncontrollable anger , verbal and emotional abuse. unbelievable where this has gotten me and after almost two years of on and off i called it quits. He doesn't admit having a problem , doesn't admit that thsi drug has EVERYTHING to do with his depression, loss of interest in ANYTHING , other addictions like cigarettes and alcohol. Kept telling me that adderall was the best thing that ever happened to him. he can go on for 10-12 hours at work but by the time he would come home there was the crash... used to come home without any energy and very irritable. very irritable , hurtful and mean all the time. incapable of emotions other than anger . anger directed at me . aggressive, defensive,, angry. i found it impossible to cope with him , i let him go. for the millionth time. i know in my heart that there is nothing i can do to make him understand that he has a problem and that this drug has changed his personality. he is a toxic man and i will be happy to get through this and move on with my life. my life was hell for the last month we lived together. even now, in his eyes , I AM THE ONE THAT DESTROYED THE RELATIONSHIP. maybe one day he will realize what was the real problem, if this will EVER  happen. " one day" however, will be too late . life is too short. i have to find my own way , i will be better off.

i am completely with you on this and i know what you went through. unfortunately , it is the health system's fault first for allowing doctors to prescribe amphetamines to people who don't need them.

Adderall has helped change my life...

It did not take long after my diagnosis at age 43 to find my correct dose of Adderall. I take 20mg at 5am, 20mg at 10am and 10mg at 3pm. This amount has worked really well for me for over two and a half years. As far as other addictions, I drink less than I ever have in my adult life. Alcohol kills my control of the ADD and I don't like feeling like I used to. I am also not addicted to food anymore. I used to be the worst emotional eater and now I eat when I'm hungry and stop when I'm full. As far as anger goes, I never used to engage in a spat with my DW, I would just shut-down under the strain of the situation. Now I can voice my side of the conflict without any problem at all. In fact I stay more calm and logical as my DW tends to get more angry which makes the situation worse because I want to conclude the discussion and whether we agree or disagree finish it because I can't stand going through the same argument over and over. What a waste of time. Being a participant in our arguments has taken some getting used to on both our accounts, but she used to plead for me to say something tell her she's right or wrong, just give her an idea what I was thinking. I do give answers and she does not always get to have the last word anymore, which has changed the dynamic quite a bit.

In a way it could look like I'm an angrier guy than I used to be, because I never reacted well to anger or was oblivious to the anger, so I seemed like a super laid back guy. It has been a real learning process for me to gage my reactions to things I either never used to notice or if I did notice I could not select the one of a thousand things racing through my brain and speak my side of the situation.

My Adderall has been at a very constant dosage and some days it works better than other days, but Adderall is not going to be enough if the ADDer does not seek additional help though counseling and discussions like we have on this website. Adderall can be abused for sure, but that is why regular meetings with your psychologist are so important.


I couldn't continue a

I couldn't continue a relationship with someone who acted this way for even a short time. I'm pretty unforgiving though and want what is best for myself at all times. If they do it once, they may do it again. I hope you can find some peace. 

get help

on the fence, I had a similar experience. I know it is scary. My STBX took huge doses of Adderall with no other form of treatment for his ADHD. It did help him focus, but it was like all of his common sense switched off. He immediately had sleep issues (of course!) and needed even more to wake up. Which may not be addiction but it is certainly dependence. I think he was trying mightily to cope with working and life, and he could focus better at work, but the downside was terrible. He began to fly into scary, verbally abusive rages. He slept until mid afternoon on his days off and was groggy and irritable all of the time. And we had kids! When I tried to talk to him about it he would not listen at all. I had to leave with our children, eventually. 

I would be extremely worried about your partner. It sounds like you have been trying to get through to him for months and he is in some serious denial, which gives him the ability to keep taking the drugs and discount the "reality" that it is affecting him so negatively. You cannot put yourself in danger and it is good that you confronted him and absolutely it was the right thing to ask him to leave. There are mixed reviews on interventions, but you could try it. You could have a trusted friend who agrees with you sit down under calm circumstances, and say you are concerned out of love for him. Tell him what you see. Or you could ask to go to the doctor with him and have an open conversation about what you see. Or write him a letter. 

And read all you can about having addiction in your family. Check into Al-Anon. In the end it will be his decision to listen or not. He may have to hit rock bottom. I am so very sorry. Stay strong. You are doing the most loving thing you can by refusing to enable his behavior. My thoughts are with you. 

You did the right thing

I'm very sorry you are going through this. Adderall is wonderful if used properly. But properly is the key. It is his responsibility to get his act together. Good job taking care of yourself. Best wishes.

Mismatching meds to people

I seem to be reading a lot of posts on here where it seems that, simply, people may be on the wrong meds. However it takes a self-aware and willing person to tell that to the dr who is prescribing. Given that if they are on a suboptimal med combination then their perception of the world may not be accurate, so the problem is compounded as the dr never knows - but that does not mean that it is the ADHD person's fault. We are adjusting their brain chemistry here.  It seems critical to get a psychiatrist who is experienced with Adult ADHD and if necessary the spouse must get their views to the psych somehow.  There is absolutely zero need to tolerate anger, drug-seeking and aggression from someone who is on a stimulant.


I couldn't agree more. I was aghast that an internist was prescribing doses this high to my spouse, whom he only saw every few months, and had no idea what the effect on him was. This just shouldn't happen. I kept urging my spouse to see a psychiatrist who could work more closely with his brain chemistry and medications. I know his judgment was affected by his altered brain chemistry and side effects. I think my spouse was afraid he would be cut off from this wonder drug and his inability to find the impetus to address it was probably compounded by ADHD. A terrible cycle.   


I think it takes a lot of bravery to face the challenge of a partner's addictive behavior. 

In the case of the guy I'm seeing, he is on Adderall and also takes a beta-blocker to deal with the side effect of elevated heart rate. The Adderall seems to work for him.  In the 14 months I have known him I have only seen him get angry a few times - and it resembles mild irritation.  A couple of times he was angry at me.  He seemed briefly irritated and then immediately began, via his behavior and tone of voice, to reassure me that he was not really angry. 

My point is that I do think that Adderall works for some people. However it is, after all, a controlled substance (unlike some other psychiatric medications) and for some people with ADHD abuse of this drug (or, potential abuse) means that they must find another medication and/or treatment regimen.  It sounds like the abuse of this drug has had devastating consequences for some of you and your loved ones.  Things are so greatly complicated by the fact that your loved one's rely upon this medication as a treatment for ADHD. I hope I never have to face this. 


logicalfather's picture

60mg of Adderall

Adderall almost destroyed my life. My body became calm, but my mind went racing. Fortunately I did not take it for long. Be very careful, because the thoughts he may be having could be....... different than he would otherwise. The body & mind can only go without sleep for so long, no matter how much you stimulate it each day. My advice is to take this problem very seriously. I hope ya'll get the help needed. Good luck.