ADD...Loving It: Have the right partner??? (spoiler alert)

I just saw the show.  What I liked about it:

(1) Really informative regarding how its diagnosed, treatments, ramifications, gave hope.   (2) Funny.   (3) Relaxed and clear presentation of information.

What I did not like:

(1) The part where they said "Have the right partner".

That made me nervous, primarily because it made me think about my husband and how our marriage and family life has really been arranged around HIM all these years.  The thing is, I rant here- but for years, my response to his behavior WAS to adapt the environment.  Since the early years of our marriage, I noticed that he got overwhelmed easily. I know I did some initial crabbing, but I really don't like to fight about the same things repeatedly, so my approach has been to do it myself, or to "outsource" it to make it a non-issue whenever possible. 

 The process was request, request again, complain, do it myself/outsource.  And yes, I always said "please" and "thank you".  And yes, I would give him just "bits" of the job to keep him from feeling overwhelmed.  Didn't work.

 At this point, my husband doesn't have to do housework, laundry or "babysitting"; no homework, appointments, shopping, vacation planning or family paperwork (including taxes and investments). No day to day school-related tasks, only transports the kids for  2 min/day. No meal planning/cooking, bathing kids, parent/teacher conference. No packing lunches, picking out kids clothes for school (I lay them out).  Very little diaper changing, little disciplining, no bedtime enforcement, no special school projects.  

My husband has only these chores (1) take the garbage to the curb 1 x week (2) pick the kids up from my mother's and bring home after school (4 x week, 2 min. drive). (3) take son to therapy (1 x week for 1 hour).  (4) mow the law (summers; only does it 3 x entire summer- yikes!) and (5)  keep the driveway clear in winter.  (6) Pay the monthly bills (nearly all of which are on automatic payment).   I never say anything about the lawn, though it looks terrible.  The winter driveway maintenance is more imperative; it is 250 ft long, and getting my son's wheelchair down a snowy, icy driveway to catch the school bus is really hard, and at times dangerous (he took a job that he has to go in earlier now, so I put the kid on the bus).  I do crab about that at times; primarily because he doesn't get it done but refuses to "allow" me to hire it out, which I would prefer to do.  

He is also responsible for car and home maintenance, but does not do either when he should-  another job I would prefer to hire out- and not fight about- but he won't "allow" it.   I am serious when I say that I waited 9 months (quietly) for him to replace the light bulb over the dining room table.  Yes, I have crabbed on this site about my basement not being finished.  But I haven't said a word about it TO HIM in over 7 years.  When we argue, it is almost always because he is so controlling that he tries to interfere with things that I am doing that make me happy.  

We have no financial problems; he has no real worries.  I do not fight with him about these tasks.  I do not belittle him for not doing these tasks, I do not call him names, I rarely yell.  I get angry, but silently.  He doesn't have to figure out the day to day of life and I rarely ask him to pitch in and help with the household chores.  If he decides to do a chore, for ex. fold laundry, I am not controlling or perfectionistic;  I do not quibble with him about HOW he folds it.  When he wants to change jobs, I update his resume for him.  On weekends, I make sure the children do not disturb him if he is sleeping in.  He goes where he likes, when he likes.  He buys what he wants, when he wants.  He sleeps when he wants.   I do/manage so much, in addition to working outside the home.  It has been this way for 10 years now...

So WHY is he so stressed and b*tchy all the time?  Is there a "more right" partner for him- one who will take care of 100% of his life, rather than just 90% ?  Is this not a stellar example of "don't sweat the small stuff?" like Mrs. McKenna (McKinney?) said in the movie? He has so much "support".  Yet, he is always angry.  Yet, he cannot get his 10% done....





stress relief

After reading this to myself, I now feel that the only thing that will relieve his "stress" is if I take the children and go.  It seems as if our mere existence is a burden to him.

Not sure what the common link

Not sure what the common link is, but many times in my marriage I felt 'in the way' or like a 'burden' to him. Mostly when he would insist he loved me and didn't want to lose me, but would turn right around and do things that made me think he'd be happier just being a bachelor, not having to 'answer' to me. Our son, who is special needs (he's 18, has Tuberous Sclerosis, has seizures almsot daily and is non-verbal autistic), is from my first marriage. He has always been a father to every.single.way.possible, but as soon as he'd start to behave this way, I would immediately think "he's tired of being the sole breadwinner" (although he HATED me working) or "he's overwhelmed with the responsibility of it all and he wants out..but doesn't have the balls to tell me". I am stubborn and prideful...being made to feel like I was somehow hindering his dreams, his happiness, was not something that I got over easily...if ever. I cannot explain it, I do not have the answers, but I believe their actual FEELINGS are quite the opposite. Looking back now, I really do feel I was wrong to ever think these things.

To this day he hates for me to say "we were miserable". It threatens him somehow...and just like I told him recently "come on, tell me you WERE miserable...because if you were HAPPY and had an affair, then I'm not sure I want to proceed!" I know he was miserable, not sure why he wants to deny it. Wayne said it is most likely just the guilt of it all...knowing that my misery was at least partially his fault.

I think your husband's anger is coming from shame and guilt. I think it most likely has nothing to do with you. I can honestly say that the one thing my husband has always had in his favor is that he ISN'T cold and mean. If he were, it would have made it a lot easier for me to just walk away all those years ago. It is very hard to explain how we could go through 6 years of pure hell, and me still say 'He isn't a mean person'. It is what it is true..although it defies logic sometimes. His actions sucked...and that is where we had so many conflicts.

I honestly don't see how you have anything to lose at this point...make him get help. If he won't then do what you have to do to regain your life...and your happiness. No matter how strong or independent, we all really just want to feel loved by this person we share our lives with. It feels so good to me to be able to just look at my husband through loving eyes again...and I'm so thankful he makes it easy for me.

Sherri, I tend to agree

I have felt for a long time that my husband's anger has nothing to do with me.  I once asked him to do a small task, and of course he forgot.  I calmly told him later that I really need for him to do this thing- he exploded! "You and your endless needs!" he shouted.  He appears to feel put upon by the slightest expectations/requests. Reading so many posts on this forum, of wives/husbands stressed and overwhelmed by trying to manage everything, made me realize that without the daily, practical support I get from my parents, our marriage would've collapsed years ago under the strain.  Especially since we have a handicapped child, also.

I remember seeing a statistic once, that raising a severely disabled child is so stressful that it takes about 20 years off the life of the mother.  I wonder how many additional years of my life my husband is consuming.

I like to read your posts (and wayne's).  They remind me that it is possible for a spouse to be loving even when/during marital problems.  I had forgotten that for a long time.

Despite my feelings (or lack thereof) for him, I do still make loving gestures.  I still rush home from work to have something ready for him to eat when he returns. I still make sure his scrubs are washed and hung for the work week (in pairs, so he doesn't have to think about it).  I still bring him little treats that I know he likes.  I listen to him when he talks about work stress.  I try to fix meals that I know he will enjoy.  I clean his bathroom and keep his bedside neat.  I fill his gas tank. I pick up movies that I know only he will enjoy.  I encourage him to engage in and explore hobbies that interest him, no matter the cost.  I have hot chocolate ready- which he loves- when he has chosen to snow blow the driveway.  I generate income, so he doesn't have to be stressed about being the sole provider.

I honestly feel like I don't know what else I can do for him.  HIS needs are endless.

Hole in the bucket's picture

My opinion sounds a lot like

My opinion sounds a lot like "Dump the loser."  But what I actually suggest is save yourself and your kids.  Gather them up and bolt.  It will either be the kick in the pants that gets him to fix his shit... OR it will be shedding the last anchor that holds you.

Hole re: dump the loser

Easier said...  I don't really need to "save" the kids.  Between me and their doting maternal grandparents, they are more than saved.  Honestly, if I had had a childhood like my kids, I would've thought I was living in an enchanted fairyland.  

They really don't see their father and I have big fights,  though I admit the eldest is probably aware that there is a Cold War going on....   We talk about it at times.  I just say things like, "Sometimes your father has a bad day that puts him in a bad mood, just like you do sometimes."

I am sure I don't look "beat down" to her; in fact, she thinks I am the one in charge of the household, and daddy is 4th in charge (after the grandparents).  She thinks that's ha ha funny.  

Me however...  I am emotionally drained and tired, tired, tired of being told that I deserve not a shred of kindness. 

I do.

I take trips alone- have my parents keep an eye out on hubby and kids.  And I enjoy the relief.  

But always, I have to return.

We all have needs...why do

We all have needs...why do ALL of his need to be met? He isn't 15. This is something I've been pounding home for a very long time now to my husband....everyone in this house has needs. The true meaning of family and love is to FILL needs not demand everyone of yours be met to the detriment of everyone elses. Not on the grand scale it seems you've described, but if it is all they've ever known, then it is all they know. Rip the rug out from under him, start filling your own damned needs, and let him learn to fill some of his own. It is the best favor you can do for him, for yourself, and for your marriage.

Boundaries...where are your boundaries? You're giving him everything...maybe without him even asking...and getting what in return? What are you demanding for yourself in return? Anything??

Sherri re: my own needs

Oh, but I do fulfill my own needs.  This is one reason our marriage is dead.  I am very self-sufficient.  I make my own money.  I can take care of myself.  I used to do my OWN car maintenance- change oil, tires, belts, small repairs,  lots of things (don't tell him, though.  I play stupid on this.)  Good heaven's Sherri, I even grow a lot of my own food and can it!  I fully engage in and enjoy my hobbies (I just make sure to do so after the kids bedtime- I actually take piano lessons at 9:00 PM).  

My intention is not to give him everything (well, except for the d*mned hot chocolate).  My intention is to make sure my children do not suffer from his lack of participation.   He eats well, because THEY must eat well.  He enjoys a clean and orderly home because THEY require it.  Uh, I wash his scrubs with mine because I hate to waste water (I guess I could let the d*mn things lay around and wrinkle, though).  

I am afraid that ripping the rug out from under him would also rip it out from under my children. 

But wouldn't it be much nicer

But wouldn't it be much nicer if HE was filling some of your needs? You're married, you should not be expected to fill all of your own f'in needs. This is what HE needs to get!

waynebloss's picture

Re:My husband has only these chores

Really, that is ALL he has to do and then he is done?  WOW, I want to come live with you!!  A person with ADD would have it on "easy street" at your house!  STOP DOING SH*T for him!  He is a grown man, if he cannot figure out the laundry or how to do some minor repair then he deserves the end results of his actions!  I am very happy that you are self sufficient and that you do not need him, but Rev, time to cut the cord and either let him sink or swim! 

My wife cut the cord to some things and I swam, I took in a little water, but I am swimming now without help.  Your husband needs to know if he can sink or swim because right now he is riding in the boat without a care in the world.  The issue I have is that I am swimming only with my children in this BIG lake and I do not know where my wife is.

Here is an example....for years there was a "to do" list that never was finished, sure some were started but never finished.  Since my change and my med taking ability, I have completed all but 1 of the projects around the house.  Last night, I remembered that the sheets needed to be done so I did them, even made "our" bed that she sleeps in alone!  I even did some of her laundry just to be nice and show her that I can remember, that I am not dependant on her!  I hung a picture up last night that she asked me to do, yes it was 2 days after she asked but I do work from 7a - 10:30p M-T and Wed are my days to just relax after the kids go to bed. 

Rev, you have to throw him overbaord and see if he can swim or sink, and if he sinks then he sinks but you are not his mother, you are not is caretaker, you are his wife, supposed to be his best friend, so act like it and let HIM come back to reality! 

Just my 2 cents..I think I have 2 cents?



Hi wayne,

Yes, you are right.  I think I just discovered that it doesn't matter how I feel about it; my body is saying, "enough stress already."  I was talking to hole a little bit ago, typed two sentences and had to stop to call 911 and then my mother to get my baby,  because I suddenly started feeling like I was having a heart attack.  Wayne, my blood pressure and pulse rate were so high *for me 160/95; 135.  I am normally 100/60; 70.   I don't think it is the BP itself.  Its the fact that its climbing so quickly I can feel it.   Nothing showed up with 12 pt leads (so what?); I refused to go to hospital as my BP and HR started dropping back toward normal in about 20 min.  Made appt with my PCP.

Wayne, he is killing me.  Something has to change, and quickly.  I'm scared.


Can I say holy c**p! What does it take for us to know when it's time to jump ship. omg Take care of yourself.


p.s. I had to take my xanax today..I was getting palpitations and that *heart attack* feeling. For me it's stress induced panic attack.


I'm listening to this song by James Morrison I think for me it says it all.

Let me hold you for the last time
It's the last chance to feel again
But you broke me, now I can't feel anything...

You can't play on broken strings
You can't feel anything
That your heart don't want to feel
I can't tell you something that ain't real.....

Oh, what are we doing?
We are turning into dust
Playing house in the ruins of us

Running back through the fire
When there's nothing left to save
It's like chasing the very last train
When it's too late, too late..

waynebloss's picture

Maybe someone is telling you something

Maybe there is someone who is telling you what you should do!  Time for Rev to take care of Rev and let him roll off your back like water on a duck. If he gets angry over it, then smile and nod but let it go!  The BP is WAY too high and the pulse is a bit scary and if something happens to you, then he is left with the kids?  Really, is that what you want?  Time for you, and your needs, time for you and your wants, time for you and your desires, if it is not him, then it is not him.  reduce the stress and watch everything feel better...promise!

Sherri, re: much nicer

Is that what he should be doing- filling some of my needs?  You know, outside of looking after my car, I cannot say I truly have NEED of him.  Even then, its not that I can't take it to the shop.  This is why "smothering him with love" will be so difficult for me.  We do not have emotional intimacy.  We don't TALK.  We don't have sex. We rarely eat together.  I would say I spend about 15 min/day interacting with him (and that's broken up into small chunks, not all at once).  Crap, the last time I "held his hand" I was bandaging it.  Maybe I don't get it anymore, either.

waynebloss's picture

That is my wife and I

You have described my wife and I since we "separated"! "We do not have emotional intimacy. We don't TALK. We don't have sex. We rarely eat together. I would say I spend about 15 min/day interacting with him (and that's broken up into small chunks, not all at once). Crap, the last time I "held his hand" I was bandaging it. Maybe I don't get it anymore, either." 


Change the him to her and that is US! 

waynebloss's picture

It makes me sad

It does make me sad that there are beautiful women inside and out who have not been told or treated as such!  I do pray that very soon you all are treated like the way you should be! 

Thank you

Hi Sherri.  I have been "lurking" on this site for several months, posting maybe once or twice.  It's more of a comfort for me to hop on and read comments from people going through what I am going through where my husband and I are having a difficult period.  My husband sounds like your husband, he doesn't have angry outbursts, nor is cold or mean.  But I do feel the way you felt even though I know it isn't true, that before we got together he was happier because he didn't have to deal with me.  He has 2 daughters and before I came along they spent much of their time with their grandmother (she is the one who handled all their schooling, extra activities and basically met all their needs).  Once I researched ADD and began to understand why his life was the way it was it was like a light bulb went off.  I often have people ask me how he handled everything by himself before we started dating and really he wasn't.  He wasn't this full time single dad to his girls, grandmother handled that.  Dad bails him out financially when he loses papers, doesn't pay things and it becomes a crisis.  I honestly thought his house was a mess because he was juggling work, kids, and well guys are just  Sometimes I just sit here and wonder if he decided he needed somebody, anybody to come in and be his maid, nanny, and secretary.  I know that he loves me but those thoughts pop up sometimes when I'm overwhelmed with everything.  After a year and a half the house is still a work in progress, every room needs to be scrubbed down because they are seriously gross.  His girls have had no idea about being clean because he has never set that example with them.  To the point they will drop trash on the ground and walk by it for days.  I found almost 1/2 a sandwich under the kitchen table one day.  I've observed them closely and they don't show any signs of having ADD themselves, they just have no awareness of cleanliness because he made no effort and doesn't see the mess they make either.  Not only that but they CRAVE attention because they never have his unless it is getting yelled at.  He will still come home from work and never acknowledge their presence.  His parenting with them is inconsistent and sometimes irritating to watch because at their young age they already know how dad is, he doesn't remember things.  They will ask him for something and he will say later.  They let some time go by and ask again.  Then they get the "if you keep asking you're not going to get it."  I've tried telling him, don't you think they keep asking because they know you don't remember and they know you're not going to say ok you can have ice cream now or whatever.  It's a bit unfair don't you think to punish them for adapting to your forgetfulness? 


I know this post kind of went off the topic I was originially writing for, but sometimes it's nice to tell people about things when I know they truly understand how it is.  These past couple days I have been comforted by the posts I have seen from you, saddened for revelation and really appreciated the humor of bucket.  I have taken some notes from you and started making a list of what I need and what my boundaries are for our marriage.  I feel the same way you do, as long as my husband is willing to work towards change so am I.  If there isn't a commitment to compensate and manage his ADD symptoms then I am not going to waste my life being his maid, nanny, and secretary.  Thank you for your posts they have kept up my strength, faith, and hope! 

I'm So Exhausted's picture

Waiting for my DVD

I ordered this movie, and am waiting for the arrival of the DVD.

My 21 year old son was diagnosed with ADD in 4th grade.  It was at that time that we got the 2-for-1 diagnosis and realized my husband had the same issue.  My son has grown up learning to live with his ADD and accepting how it affects his life.  Until last year, my husband refused to accept his own ADD.

When we finally went to family counseling last year, the counselor would often ask my son to share with his Dad how he learned to deal with issues.

The best example was regarding time blindness/too-many-irons in the fire:  Only have 3 things on the to-do list for any given day.  Make sure all 3 are completely finished before you add anything else to the list.  Enjoy a break when the 3 things are finished!  Start a new list of 3 things.

My husband has a perpetual list that never ends.   Notebooks, pads of paper, clipboards,  endless lists buried amongst all the paperwork on his desk. He does not allow himself the satisfaction of completing a project and bathing in the glory of a job well done.  Anytime he gets close to accomplishing a goal - he kicks the goal 500 feet ahead by adding more to it.

Hyper-focus - boy do I witness that.  He has been known to set up huge floodlights in our yard, and work until 4 or 5 am, take a short nap, and start all over again - for days on end.  Each of these huge projects gets so very, very close to completion - but never quite gets there.  And he is completely exhausted - and is then in a zombie zone for the next week.

Once I asked him to fix the bathroom sink - and before I knew it, the whole bathroom was gutted.  No job around here is small - they all turn into a major job.

Probably this biggest realization I had reading through this particular thread - I can never be enough for him.  I am probably not the right partner.  It is not me.  That makes me sad.  Not that I am not enough - just not enough for him.

My son knows things could be better for my husband if he would just let us into his life.  My daughter thinks everything would be OK if I would just stop saying things.  I try to explain that the Peace-At-All-Costs game is not something I want to participate in.

Conflict resolution - there is not any conflict resolution.  Other than my giving up on my end. 

Wow.  I AM sad today. 



I'm So Exhausted

Truly, how have you held up under such strain for so many years?  How is it possible?  I also have floodlights *sigh*

I am only in for 12 years so far, and I am already suffering physical symptoms.  I thought I was having a heart attack today, and I have no cardiac history.  I don't even take medication for anything.  If I keep this up, I'm not going to need an anti-depressant;  I'm gonna need a beta blocker. Or a bypass.

I'm So Exhausted's picture

I'll tell you if you don't laugh

I actually did not want to give up and fail the marriage thing.

I hold my marriage vows very dear to my heart.  I promised God, my husband and all my friends and relatives that I would stay for better or worse.  I have subsequently promised my children that the only thing that would make me leave was if their Dad got a girlfriend.

I also allowed his 'my demons are clashing with your demons" ploy to work.  I doubted my own sanity.

I can see why I was so easy to rescue.  I couldn't believe anyone would or could love me.  I just let him rule the roost.  Whatever he thought was best, I went along with.  That worked for a few years. I think he was in heaven!!

But, now, I don't need rescuing.  I conquered my demons.  I got lots of character defects, but I deal with those as I have a need.  I have a lot of good strengths that would benefit his business.  I am very organized.  But he has no room for me - not one of my gifts are useful to him.

I see that I am the one who changed.  But I did think that I was working towards being as "normal" as he was.  LOL how funny is that!  And I thought we would walk off, hand in hand, into the sunset for the rest of our lives.

I missed all the warning signs.

I'm So Exhausted re: I'll tell you if... don't laugh."  I hope you weren't serious.  I know that I like to trick, and treat and tweak and tease on this forum.  YOU, however.  You do not have that "vibe" (for lack of a better word).  I would not "laugh" at you.  I have to tell you though: I follow your post.  You have a very commanding presence when you appear.  I imagine that you and your husband must have had epic battles (naturally, I don't know this. It is my overactive imagination).

I was married once before.  I REALLY didn't want to fail this time.  Two times?  Looks flaky.... 

I will probably feel the same after I watch

I have my DVR set to record it tonight.  A lot of what you wrote rings true for me.  When all is said and done, I am probably not the right partner for my DH.  I'm very very tired of "wearing the pants."

waynebloss's picture

It is a good video

I watched some of it, go figure me with ADD lost interest often but most of the educational issues that they provided were good and right on with ADD.  I want my wife to watch it but she is not ready for that right now, she is the non-ADD spouse, so coming from me right now would not be agood thing.  I am leaving it on the DVR and one day will ask if she will watch it. 

mommachef re: ADD... loving it

I will confess, there were several things about that show that I found insipid, insulting and just plain ridiculous.  Pretty much everything except the things I said I liked.  I will start a new forum- join me.  We can call it:  ADD... and Rich Enough to Indulge it.


Revelation - I am sorry for you pain.  I don't think a lot of what your describing is ADD related.  It is to a certain degree, but I think you may be giving ADD more credit than it deserves.  I get anger bursts sometimes, usually when I am overwhelmed.  If I say or do something inappropriate I still know it is wrong and I apologize, make amends, and try to get better at controlling it.  ADD does not give me license to be an a-hole.  No one else gets a free pass either, IMO.

I saw the movie and thought that it was okay.  I like that they make the case that it's real.  Having misunderstood myself for most of my life and beating myself up for it, it helps me in recovering to know that it wasn't just my lack of discipline.

I didn't like how hokey they made it seem at times.  I found that a little insulting. 

I want it clear that I am saying this next part as a person with fairly severe ADD. 

We need to be careful that we are not giving people with this condition a free pass.  You need a patient spouse, no question.  I just think ADDer's need some accountability to get treatment and meds if it's appropriate.  If they choose not to, then why should anyone cut them slack?  It is within their control.

Wives, don't let your hubby's ADD justify continual inappropriate behavior.  Even if they can't control it, they can still take responsibility for it.  I don't believe ADD causes a complete lack of conscience.

Revelation, I am truly sorry for your pain.

Frick re: wow

Yes, I need to hear this from those with ADD.  I think he does have ADD, but I strongly suspect a fairly intractable passive-aggressive personality disorder co-mingling.

My husband is going to the doctor this Monday, and is to get a referral for evaluation for ADD.  I told him I wanted a separation a few days ago.

He was not happy about it.  He said angrily, "And what if I don't have it [ADD]?  What is going to happen to our marriage then?"   I told him honestly, "If its not ADD, then it means you're just an a**hole.  And since you can't cure a**hole, you will have to leave".

He has begun to hope for a diagnosis...

waynebloss's picture

Re: Made me laugh out loud!

""If its not ADD, then it means you're just an a**hole.  And since you can't cure a**hole, you will have to leave"." 

Rev, this made me laugh out loud during class!  Thanks for making me smile!!


The descriptions in this forum discussion give me the impression that you are enabling your husband's lack of involvement in your life. Being competent does not doom you to a life of loneliness! He still should carry his weight, if only for the symbolism. Also, by abandonning your quest to find spiritual or emotional closeness you hurt yourself in the long run. Consider signing up for my upcoming seminar and reading a book or two on codependency. Btw, I was in the same spot as you some time ago. You don't have to continue to be in this particular zone. But in order to change your situation you do need to decide you deserve more,which you do! We're delighted to have you here and hope you can find the support you need and deserve.
ebb and flow's picture


I always feel a knot in my stomach every time I hear or read that the ADD partner needs to "find the right partner"...

I think it's because I often feel like the wrong person for my ADD partner in that I don't have the patience to deal with his barely treated ADD symptoms.

I honestly often wonder if I'd be able to have a life with him if it was 100% treated! :((

If not me, then who *can* live with it?

I started a thread calling all "happy ADD couples out there!"... and still haven't gotten much response. I know it's most likely they're not here to complain or get advice but I'd REALLY love to hear from these couples... 

I'm not sure what kind of person you'd have to be to constantly, on a daily basis, have to wake up to someone who's miserable, irritable, disorganized, distracted, detached.. etc, etc. Even if they had a great sense of humor about it!

I always wonder what kind of person it takes... Probably a highly medicated one. HAPPY PILLS-- I mean.


ebb and flow re: right partner

Agree.  Really, the ADD person has to be "the right partner".  Maybe better natured.  More polite.  So that the other stuff is easier to deal with.

Can you maybe be TOO distracted and detached to be the right partner for anyone?  I guess you could say that my ADD husband's right partner might be less bothered by "detachment".  But you can't pick and choose individual partner traits.  Any woman who is less bothered by "detachment" is probably somewhat detached herself, and who knows what else.  Can you imagine the nightmarish scenario for a child with TWO distracted and detached parents? 

ebb and flow's picture


I TRIPLE DOG DARE HIM to find a "better partner" who can better deal with his ADD symptoms!!!

He may fool them at first with his awesome hyperfocus but in time they'll figure him out.

Or not...

Then I wish them all the happiness in the world because OBVIOUSLY they're meant for each other!!! Soulmates.

:p LOL

ebb and flow re: finding a "better partner"

Agree.  My partner find a "better" partner?  Please.  It would be like that O. Henry story "The Ransom of Red Chief", where some kidnappers hold a little boy for ransom (his father won't pay), and the boy is so BAD that they end up begging the father to take him back!

The right partner...

I think there has to be balance in the relationship. Sounds generic, I know... I am for the most part very laid back, a little less so after my meds have awoken me from ADDland. I don't know how the NonADDer does it, honestly... I have to figure this out and improve or the train wreck will happen one day. I don't want it too...

Now that I know "What" I am fighting, maybe I can continue to slowly beat the it. I could not stand to put my kids through a divorce. My wife and I come from a long and distinguished ancestry of divorces and this has probably kept my wife and I from making the easy excuse of quitting. Basically we are both the same, we both have issues and we have to deal with these things.

Before I knew I had ADD, I knew if this marriage failed, I would not get married again because I was obviously not good at it. Really sad, but true. The ADD effects suck for everyone, so seeking treatment to limit ADD's affects is the only way not to run my wife away from me.

Do you think "Balance" is how the ADDer and NonADDer end up together? It seems most common that the couples are one of each. I knew I could not handle "More Chaos", so someone like myself was not going to work. I did not know what "Like myself" was exactly, but I knew I needed someone different from me. The ADDer in Hyper-Focus mode helped me marry my wife. She liked the attention and I would try to do the things she said she expected from her ideal spouse. I liked the structure, order and boundries she presented, because I knew I would not be able to trust my best judgments. She liked that I was laid-back, especially coming from a childhood watching an abusive step-father beat her mother and brother. To us, it seemed like the classic Type "A" and Type "B" missing piece combo. She has a quick temper, I don't... (well my temper is a little less laid-back now) I'm impulsive and fun, she is more reserved and so on. I am WAY less impulsive these days which is good.

The real question is: I am definitely changing as I learn to deal with the ADD which seems to be as difficult to deal with as the ADD, so will I still be "Right Person" after these changes become more belivable to my NonADD spouse?

My changes are largely made by daily meds, which annoy my wife because she mainly notices that I eat less and exercise more (obsessively to her). It is like she notices the things I get done and sees the, at times, frantic pace that I do things and thinks I am taking too much. I may seem frantic because my time awareness is better and I know I have so much to do and not enough time to complete everything. I feared addiction at first, but two years later I take a little less than prescribed and No more than prescribed by my doctor. I know my wife has to see many successes to make up for all of the failures/disappointments, before she can let herself believe in the changes.

I need to know it is possible the Be one of those "Happy couples out there".

I'm So Exhausted's picture

Where are the joyous spouses?

Is there anyone participating in this forum, that is a spouse of a husband with ADD,  that is as joyous as the wife in the program?

Hole in the bucket's picture



Hole re: "No."

"NO."  That's it?  I'll grant you've probably done some writerly editing of yourself, but- just "no"?

I'm So Exhausted's picture

No. No? No! in the bucket

Kinda what I thought.

gildenscript's picture


I laughed out loud.  Not just "lol".  The first REAL answer.

Thank you Hole.

ebb and flow's picture

ADD and loving

ADD and loving it...


I'm sorry but I am in such disbelief over the main couples 'happiness and joy' during the movie. On one hand they talk about how they use humor and just "learned to understand one another"... "takes a special someone to be with an ADDer..." And in the next breath he's laughing about how he took an exit off the highway to get out of a traffic jam (no patience), and ended up BUYING A CAR because the exit lead him to a dealership!!!! And, another time, he lost his cool so bad at a dealership that the cops were called because he wanted to buy a car in less than 30 mins, etc. ?!?!?!?

How is that suppose to help make anyone in my situation feel any better? It makes me think he's nutty and his wife is just drugged or some s*#t because how on earth would anyone just laugh at that?!?!?!?

I was laughing through the show like I would during a Modern Family episode but in real life it's not really that funny. That's TV show funny, not real life funny.

I'm not 100% convinced this couple hasn't 'torn a strip' a few times themselves... Please. And, if his wife really is that cool to live with then maybe she needs to start offering some classes on "how to be a *cool* non-ADD partner who laughs at everything instead of losing it all the time".

And, I'm still not convinced that there *really* are any happy ADD couples out there. I think the ones that may be happy were not severe cases... Maybe more mild ones... Or the non-ADDer is heavily medicated. :(

I'm sorry... I just don't believe that it can get to a point where you just laugh HUGE things like that off. wtf?

On the bright side, it was very educational.... except when they kept saying "I'm ADD".... That doesn't even make any sense. You don't say "I'm diabetes" you say you have diabetes.... Isn't the same for AD(H)D? You'd think they'd have that down in a documentary that's all about it... hmm...

Ok... Sounds negative but I liked it other than the 'losing all hope' feeling.... great. yay. :/

Ebb, right on!

Pardon me while I get political here, discuss issues of racism, feminism, privilege, class, etc. But:

(1) If some Black man had been in a doctors office shouting about "getting his appointment right now" and he didn't even have an appointment? That brother would've been removed by security, possibly arrested.

(2)  Its "funny" to her that he just bought a car on impulse?  There are people on this forum- and many people who aren't- who are budgeting their GROCERY money. That's a "joke" only a rich wife would get.

(3) Black man making a scene at auto dealership?  Definitely arrested.

(4) Impulsively painting a room purple?  Knocking out walls?  Not funny if you are lower middle class and live in an apartment; landlords may withhold security deposits for this kind of foolishness.  Make you pay to put it back the way it was.  Plus, paint is expensive! Again, there are people on this forum that $60.00 worth of paint would blow the budget.

(5) Just let some poor Black or White lady try to get away with any of those behaviors (except the painting).  They'd be shuttled off to a mental hospital and diagnosed as Bipolar (definitely manic-y).  What if it was his money, but wifey was the impulsive one? Think he'd be all accepting of his impulsive, flighty wife?

(6) And don't even get me started on the "right partner" jazz.  She's not the right partner.  He is, because he is wealthy.  Most women will put up with a lot of even crazier behavior from a money bags boyfriend or husband.  Who cares what he did, as long as he's paying for it- HA!

In other words, they are the perfect partners for each other because he's White and crazy WITH money, and she's White and flaky without money= love match!

I cannot stand the disingenuousness involved in pretending that race, privilege and resources aren't smoothing the way when couples like this talk about how to "handle" issues.  Don't sweat the small stuff, indeed!






waynebloss's picture

Re: Made my Day!!!

"he's White and crazy WITH money, and she's White and flaky without money= love match!"


This made my day!!  Thanks Rev!!

Chris39 re: $ talks...

Dang, girl.  I'm gonna need to hit the Lotto to keep this marriage together!

ADD TV show

OMG - it was on tonight. I had to turn off the TV. it angered me SO MUCH. Even with $$, lets face it - can anybody just laugh off disaster and personal insults. 

ebb and flow's picture


I dunno... his wife seems pretty good at laughing sh*t off! I think there needs to be some "lighten the hell up" classes being offered BY HER! ;P

Maybe I don't have the right sense of humor though...?

I don't think my ADD partner would like it, either. After watching it myself I haven't pushed that he see it because I think he'd be upset by the light heartedness of it all. He doesn't, at all, feel very light hearted about his ADD symptoms and I think he'd feel it was sort of a mockery of it. Sad but true.

I wish we could feel more humorous towards the whole ADD thing... That'd be great!!!

Sorry Man

Sorry man, but I liked it.   I didn't really care if she was *flighty*.   Truth is, I have known people just like that.   I don't know how they do it.   I am surely not married to someone like that.   My wife is like most *normal* non-ADDers,  she has suffered through this for 28+ years and is now very cold, short and in survival mode.  

For me, it was a ray of hope.   Imagine, someone actually, unknowinly, making his ADD work.  That, and the knowledge that the founder of the Virgin empire (he REALLY has a bad case of ADD) shows that some people CAN make it work.   Maybe with the meds and the learning of new skill-sets and coping stratagies I can make it work?!! 

Hypr1's picture

Made it work - still not rich!

I got some good laughs out of this. But seriously, oops - I bought a car... ahem! Anyway - I think the show showed me so much of my earlier life. I cried and was angry and shouted out I am NOT LOVING IT! It has or may have ruined so many things.

But -- from 1988 to 1998 I made it work. I had great jobs that had great rewards, helping buy my 1st house at 40 (yikes, a little late dude), but better late then never.

With that said, our finances are pretty much paycheck to paycheck. If any crisis happens (car failure, health, disaster), we would be broke. She has made some plans of her own, and I applaud that although it makes me paranoid. I'll Get over it.

In any case  == my case; sure I made if work for a decade. But then some shift happened and it didn't continue to happen. A real danger in an ADDr. Even a rich one could crash and burn (joke on Virgin).


Rev...where are you? It has

Rev...where are you? It has been a while since I've seen anything posted from you! Just thinking of you and hoping all is OK.