I found my ex has ADHD (he's 34) 5 months into our relationship. He never told me. He only mentioned sometimes that he's bad a organizing and scheduling. I found out when I saw Ritalin on his desk and asked him what it is. He told me it's to help him with organization skills. I went home later that night and googled Ritalin myself. So ADHD came up. But I didn't think it was a big deal. Now finding this site makes me realize ADHD stretches far beyond work ability. I'm now officially done with this guy after a year of physical and verbal abuse. It's sad thinking about how kind, attentive and trustworthy he seemed at the beginning. However things turned around a few months later and he started distancing himself from me. When pressed for a reason, he would blurt out things that hurt me so much. The things he said are so shocking that I would need another post to write them down so that readers can understand the extent of their hurtfulness. Sadly enough, even now I still think he's a guy with a wonderful heart. Maybe it's his ADHD? Maybe it's me that's not good enough for him and brought out his worst sides? I don't know.
Anyway, as I said I will write a separate post about his verbal outbursts with me. Here's just an example of "physical abuse" he has done to me throughout the year, even in the beginning of our relationship when he was optimistic and happy:
My ex boyfriend thought I was not skinny enough and don't look good enough, so he controlled my diet. In fact I have a very normal BMI and healthy and happy. He would allow me to only eat a salad at every meal, and at occasions where others are present, e.g. eating with friends and relatives, even in the presence of his own mother, he would stop me from eating when he thinks I've had enough, or take away food from my plate (in a smiling "loving" way). It went on for a year. Imagine feeling starved when climbing the Alps (he blamed me for looking grumpy all the time, of course I was starving and struggling with low blood pressure, thus I was grumpy!) Of course now I blame myself for allowing those things to happen to me, I humiliated myself. But at that time even though I knew it was wrong, I always assumed my ex was a bit nerdy and idiotic when interacting with people, so I kindly explained to him that he can't do that kind of actions to people (like explaining to a 5-year old) instead of smashing the food on his face.
Anyway, nothing worked because he would become defensive and put the blame on me. He would say things like he's only doing that coz I don't have enough determination to be on a diet on my own, and that he doesn't even enjoying controlling my food etc. Ironically, we're not together anymore, and the past few months post-breakup has been hell for me because of all the abusive shit. Food is just one example, there are many more. Hell has made me lose weight even faster than when he was controlling my diet, now I'm officially size small.
From hindsight, it's interesting that even when the food controlling began I didn't know he had ADHD at that time. But I still found excuse for him and assumed he had good intentions but bad actions. I guess I just have too much empathy that turned into my weakness and ended up hurting yourself. Dating this ADHD man has taught me so much about life, lesson of life that normal people would learn in years, I've learned them all with just one break-up.
BTW he's a high-functioning
Submitted by ex-girlfriend o... on
BTW he's a high-functioning ADHDer with very high IQ and member of Mensa. Maybe that helps explain things?
I'm not clear...
Submitted by Delphine on
"Ironically, we're not together anymore, and the past few months post-breakup has been hell for me because of all the abusive shit."
Are you saying he's still being abusive even though you are no longer a couple? Or is it the fallout from your time together? He certainly is overly controlling and I would celebrate the splitup. Eat well. Have wine. :)
I have not contacted him
Submitted by ex-girlfriend o... on
I have not contacted him since we broke up. But it's been hell coz of all the things in the past that's left a deep mark on my heart.
The last time we spoke, I wanted a peaceful last-talk and I wished he would apologize for the food controlling. Sadly he still thinks it was the right thing to do, and he said other people didn't do it because they are just too polite and diplomatic.
I asked him: Would you have done it to your ex ex girlfriend, the girl you loved so deeply? She's overweight, I'm much slimmer than her.
He said: no I wouldn't have done it back then coz things were going well between us.
give it time
Submitted by Delphine on
It does take time to get over someone after a breakup. You are mourning the loss of what seemed at one point to hold the potential of a wonderful relationship. You might find this video helpful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWEx0i1BnDs
That certainly is odd that he didn't attempt to control his ex-ex gf's food intake even though she was heavier than you. Yes, too bad that he can't recognize how stupid that was or apologize to you. But have you looked at why you even put up with it in the first place? Hopefully it was a learning experience for you and if you encounter anything similar in future relationships, you'll be out of there in less than no time :)
For Your Own Good....Ex-girlfriend
Submitted by kellyj on
I think sometimes, people who have an extreme need to control their environment and other people in it.....have this extreme need out of not being able to control themselves. I think they actually become "dependent on these controlling behaviors" like an obsession.....from being so frustrated that nothing they do ever seems to help when trying to control something with little or no effect and this starts to extend outwardly to everything including you if you are with them.
I'm the one with ADHD between my wife and I.....but as this is for us now.....she's the one that is overly controlling one and it's from the very reason I just said for her as well. For her....it really does have an obsessive quality to it and she says and does things that blow me away in how hurtful and callous she appears to me sometimes. Some of the things she says to me are so outrageous sometimes...... and she is constantly focusing on me to the point it makes me extremely nervous (anxious) like someone is watching me all the time. That;s exactly what it feels like.....like someone is always watching every more you make?
What you said here resonated with me in my own experience with this...."But I still found excuse for him and assumed he had good intentions but bad actions." I do believe that your initial gut reaction was accurate......"good intentions but bad actions" In other words......for your own good? What would make him believe that doing what he did was for your own good if that is true? Possibly doing what you did anyway despite how you really felt about it by allowing it and doing nothing to stop it? Or better....allowing someone else to control you and do things that go against what you believe or what you think is right even though you know it at the time?
"Sadly enough, even now I still think he's a guy with a wonderful heart. Maybe it's his ADHD?" Thinking here (and only stating the obvious?) Why would it be a sad thing to believe that he's a guy with a wonderful heart? Why would that make you feel sorry for him? I can only see that as a good thing? Could it be you feel sorry for yourself instead and the fact you are not with him and missing being with him is only because you allowed him to control you in these ways?
I think you are also correct in assuming that this is related to his ADHD.....but this in itself is not an ADHD symptom necessarily. For some people who have it yes.....but not everyone.
For me.....I did (before I was diagnosed and treated)....almost the extreme and exact opposite of this. To this day.....controlling others (overtly manipulating, controlling my environment or others is my weakest strength of all) I took that same obsessive quality and focused that inwardly on myself and did things to myself in damaging ways (which did indirectly control other people (in a passive way )...but not in the way that you are describing the same as it is for my wife.
For me....I was paying more attention or focusing on myself and what was wrong with me.....instead of extending that outwardly and focusing on what was wrong with everyone else or my external environment as it sounds very much like what your ex and my wife do in their misguided efforts to counter their own lack of self control.
Either way....if you are directing your focus and energy in trying to control yourself in either one of two directions.....inwardly.....or.....outwardly.......neither one is good in the extreme.....yet, they both have a different set of problems that go along with it. One is overt and aggressive outwardly.....and one is more covert and passively or indirectly affecting other people. Nether one in that respect.....is better or worse than the other?
Even for me going in the opposite direction.....those obsessive or extreme behaviors even if not directed at or focused on others.....were still having a negative impact on other people and were not only damaging to myself in other words.
Maybe it's me that's not good enough for him and brought out his worst sides? I don't know? Unfortunately....the effect of being around someone who is so focused on what is wrong with you (and everything else around them from this kind of skewed OCD way of seeing things (non clinical usage here). It starts making you believe that there really IS something wrong with you after a while even when there's not. Saying.....I don't think there's anything wrong with you either before or after and even now.
But eventually....you start to doubt yourself and it makes you very self conscious after a while (like you are being watched). Pretty soon....you start thinking everyone is watching you and thinking the same thing?( which is not true of course )....outside of a handful of people like your ex ( or my wife ) but as I am saying this.....fully admitting that ADHD is my problem for example.....not everyone else's problem unless I allow that to happen.
If they feel like they've allowed this to happen and cannot control themselves or prevent Themselves from doing something about (themselves).....they will continue to go down the same road they're on in trying to control you even more once they've failed. (telling themselves....it's what YOU want and it for YOUR own good. A lie but only one they believe themselves )
What's their real failure in reality?.......trying to control themselves by doing it bu trying to control YOU instead and thinking this will work? (externally not internally within themselves)
My wife responds to her inability to control me by getting angry ( at me ) even though she can't really say exactly why or what it is that she is really angry at? Aside from those hurtful statements and outrageous comments that you are referring to? Those statements (the same abusive ones) that she makes are completely irrational and have no basis on anything real or what is really happening in reality. They are completely illogical and make no logical sense what so ever. They're pure projections and rationalizations and shouldn't be given any weight or credit what so ever and should basically be ignored and let go of. They just more defensiveness and have no bearing or refection on you .....literally!
In other words....they are just a round about way of making an excuse and trying to pass off their own lack of personal responsibly onto you and trying to make that your problem instead of seeing it as their own personal problem instead. Quite ass -backwards if you stop and think about it?
Now, here I am saying this for your own good in a different way than the way your es was attempting to do..... "Hell has made me lose weight even faster than when he was controlling my diet, now I'm officially size small." Hell has nothing to do with this all things considered here? You lost weight from not eating as much food ( literally not putting food into your mouth and swallowing it? ) The overall effect this had on you might have made you lose your appetitive this is true.....but if you didn't want to lose the weight in the first place....no one can starve you or prevent you from eating.
Having said that..... in your favor here, at least one thing that is kind of phenomenon that happens to you when you go into high stress mode or have been there too long and your body goes into high alert (fight and flight status) it releases a lot of chemicals into your system like Cortisol , Adrenaline etc.....which is what your body does when it is gearing up for or in preparation for a confrontation or attack (from an outside threat).....or....in order to control the pain and shock of experiencing a loss like you ar experiencing right now. This is normal and this happens to everyone in your situation if you weren't aware of it. As it has for me too.
Just so you know this about yourself and why this happens? I think once you get over this initial part of your experience and relax a little further on down the road....I think you'll find that you will return to the same weight you were all things considered unless you continue to stay on the same diet you are on now even if your appetite returns in the same way as you were before. You can't really blame or fault your ex for that much at least since it's the one thing that is completely out of his control and there is no way he could he could possibly do that to you?
"and I guess I just have too much empathy" I don't think that's possible do you?
"and that turned into my weakness and ended up hurting yourself." From spending so much time learning about myself and having a number of experiences like you've mentioned here.."has taught me so much about life, lesson of life that normal people would learn in years, I've learned them all with just one break-up.
What I've come to know that is really the truth here.....that those weakness were already there and other people can only point them out to you but can't make them materialize or manifest them any more than they can force you to do anything you don't want. The fact that they are weakness in the first place.... makes you more dependent on others from the strengths they have that you don't posses yourself......This is the only reason I think..... why these things materialize in the first place....not because of anything that they did...... or were the ones that actually caused this to happen?
Trying and failing is part of the learning process (learning curve of life?) and you just learned a valuable lesson in life that you will always remember and will serve your best interest in the long run going forward. For your own good ....use that as an opportunity to grow instead of seeing it as a horrible thing that being with your ex did to you? T
In your own thinking here..... it was NOT your ex ...or being with him that caused this..... and he was not at fault for anything he had no control of himself. This will only get you to stay stuck in your own thinking about this. You'll never get past this if are still allowing that to control you and what you do in the future?) Not for your own good at all!
Going back to your original assumption here "even now I still think he's a guy with a wonderful heart. Of course now I blame myself for allowing those things to happen to me, I humiliated myself.
But at that time even though I knew it was wrong, I always assumed my ex was a bit nerdy and idiotic when interacting with people, so I kindly explained to him that he can't do that kind of actions to people (like explaining to a 5-year old) instead of smashing the food on his face. You didn't know.....and nether did he? Who can you really blame for that? Let it go.
Knowing you have ADHD....does not explain to you why you do thing by simply knowing that and taking medication. Something else needs to happen first before you can know anything like this and that just comes from experience and the lessons this has taught you.
How very fortunate you are for having this opportunity and all the things you've learned.... for your own good...now, and in the future.
I think, check....all the above. Good luck to you and God Speed:)