Singing to the choir

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Give it Time

My strongest suggestion to anybody dating a person with ADHD is to give the relationship allot of, at least 3 years before you get married, co-mingle funds, live together even, or God forbid have babies. Spend allot of time with the person so you can really get a good idea of what is involved in life with a person with this condition, how deeply affected the person is and whether you can make the necessary adjustments in your own life to make it work. Definitely don't make any big commitments until well after the infatuation period is COMPLETELY OVER.  Make sure the person is admitting they have ADHD and is getting the appropriate treatment and doing their daily exercise, eating right, no addictions. Only under those conditions would I say to deepen the relationship and get married.

I have a successful marriage...with problems...but we're going to make it, I believe.  We also have no children. Thanks be to God we were infertile and not in a position to do fertility treatments because neither of us knew then that my husband had ADHD and in hind-sight, 10 years later, I can fully see that if we'd had kids, we might not still be together. I think putting the normal life chaos that goes with children into the mix would've been the breaking point for us. It also helped that I was nearly 39 when I got married to my husband (first marriage) because I was old enough and had enough life experience to be able to stand up for myself and require him to get help or lose me. There have been some hard roads in 12 years of marriage, but I am glad I married my ADHD husband because he is committed to doing whatever it takes to make our marriage work, including submitting to help....which is the most manly, respectable thing I can imagine a man doing for his wife and himself.

I really feel I have to

I really feel I have to comment here....

Bunsy, each person's relationship with their ADHDEr is unique because each ADHDer is unique. Whereas I left mine for reasons (some attached to ADHD) my ex did not have any of the personality traits that your ex listed....not even close.

Mine could hold down a job, fix things (although he also broke a lot of things) and although I couldn't depend on him for the little things (one of the reasons I left) if I ever needed "rescued" he would drop all he was doing and come "rescue" me...however he will also do this for total  strangers...he loves to rescue.

As far as the sex, for us, I just lost attraction and he was so hyper that he couldn't focus on the fact that we never had sex anymore so it just stopped. But when we did is was amazing. Never weird.

What I am trying to say is that there are different ways that and ADHDer lives their life. Yours seems like he had real bad addiction issue whereas mine was only addicted to cigarettes (something we quit doing with each other). Even though I absolutely agree that the OP needs to learn what she can and seriously  spend some time with this man to figure out who he truly is before ever making any marriage commitment (because addiction issues or not, ADHD is a very, very, very difficult thing to live with) I don't think it's fair to assume that her man will behave in the same manner yours did...just like each person is different, each ADHDer is different.

OP, I will say this to you: you state that you need to figure out how to "get through to him right now" and I say to you, no. You need to figure out how to get through to him...and a good technique at that because if you marry him, you will have to use this technique for the rest of your life. His symptoms can be slightly controlled but a lot of the time, there is no talking to and ADHDer. Good luck to you.

I can understand where you

I can understand where you are coming from...relationships such as these can leave damaging scars and I agree that the OP needs to truly understand the effects ADHD will have on her specific relationship before ever jumping into marriage.

I wouldn't say that my experience was necessarily "better" but I didn't have to deal with the infidelity issues that others on this forum have. Actually my situation was terrible and broke my heart...but before I ever even ended it I gave our relationship everything I had but at the end of the day I just didn't love him anymore. That is the only way I am able to ever live with the decision. I just couldn't stand the sight of him anymore because I felt as if everything my relationship was based on was a lie.

Ho hum and oh well. I hope you are able to heal yourself Bunsy. There is a lot of good support here.

I, too, have to add my bit

My husband has ADHD.  We've been married for 17 years.  We've had our really rough times... but nothing like Bunsy described.  We're STILL married.  Yes, you do need to know a lot more about ADHD - and learn to be comfortable with what it will bring to your relationship.  And I mean comfortable!

But I really MUST defend ADHDers.  The best way I can do that is to use my husband as an example.  

Jobs - My husband has had a job for all of our marriage except for 3 months.  He lost his job and it took a while to find a decent position in his field of work.  He's dedicated to his job.  He's only taken sick days when our children were born and when he was sent home because he was too ill due to kidney stones.  

Money - Ok, he was bad at handling money.  He didn't see that $5 here and $10 there eventually added up to hundreds of dollars.  But, he saw how destructive it was to us and he has learned great restraint with money.  I, sometimes, even have to lecture him to buy something for himself.  It's possible for the money issue to evolve.  

Fixing things - Right, well, my husband is not so good at this.  He was never taught how to fix things, really.  Fortunately, I was.  So, it isn't a problem for me.  

Dependability - Well, it can go either way.  Is my husband trustworthy to be somewhere when he said he would?  Yes.  Does he always do things he said he would?  No.  And most of those times are due to forgetting/hyperfocusing.  But something you have to learn about ADHD is that (at least with well-meaning ADHDers) words have to speak louder than actions.  The words come from the heart... but the actions are controlled by the ADHD.  If you can handle being told he loves you, but he won't kiss you, hug you, touch you for 6 months straight - then you're good to go.  If you can't handle that, you may need to reconsider the relationship.

Sex - I've had no problems with infidelity.  My husband's more loyal than anyone I know.  While I know these problems exist with a lot of couples, it does not always exist.  My marriage is proof.  He has no porn addiction.  Our sex life (when it exists - ADHDers seem to get into a pattern of sex very often or no sex at all for quite a while) is fanastic.  It's not creepy or porn-like (unless we want it to be).  And I've never known a man who was so empathetic in bed - ironic since ADHD people can have quite a difficult time with empathy.

Cleaning/etc. - My husband can cook for himself.  Many ADHDers love to cook and you can't convince them to let you cook a meal.  Yes, my husband doesn't know how to load or unload the dishwasher "properly", but he'll do it anyway (and although I have to move things around, it still takes less time for me that way).  Silly toothpaste cap? Really?  That's a major complaint?  Well, my husband puts the cap back on the toothpaste - but it doesn't matter since we use different toothpastes.  He doesn't leave the toilet seat up.  He doesn't forget to flush.  He doesn't leave wet towels on the ground.  All of these things will vary from man to man (ADHD or not).

Child-rearing - Honestly, I've yet to find, in my personal experience an ADHD man who does a lot to help with this.  Not saying it doesn't exist - just not among the ADHDers I know.  It's a tough road.  But if you get far enough to decide to marry your boyfriend, then coming up with a detailed plan of attack regarding children is a good idea.  He probably still won't help as much as you'd like - but, as I said, you need to get comfortable with the effect ADHD will have on your relationship.

Oh - and ADHD people do say "sorry."  Maybe they don't mean it sometimes.  Maybe they don't say it every time they should.  But, they do say it.  I have a strong reason to believe that Bunsy was dealing with a little more than ADHD - maybe not.  I've seen quality ADHD men and they would be appalled at the comments made above, so I felt I had to defend those men.  It's not a walk in the park, but marrying an ADHD man really can be a good thing.  You just need to be ready!

In defense of ADDers

I just want to jump in along with BA and defend the people with ADD.  If Bunsy is describing her situation accurately there must have been a whole lot more than ADD going on there along with an extreme case of denial of the ADD.

My guy has many of the typical ADD traits: he forgets things, he makes promises he doesn't keep (generally because he forgets), isn't perfect in the dependability department - unless I really spell out for him how I need things to be, and can get stuck in the computer for hours without remembering I exist.  He also gets stuck in details, not seeing the forest for the trees (this has also made things harder for him at work, but he has kept the same job for 10 years), and many things I've told him 50 times (not exaggerating) and he Still forgets.

However, he is loyal, caring, very sweet, affectionate with me, a wonderful (and usually considerate) lover, willing to tackle all sorts of housework and chores (although I usually have to remind him, which can get tiresome), smart and fun to talk to (although sometimes he gets lost in his subject and doesn't realize that his audience is bored) and he's just an all around wonderful man.

Do the ADD things bug me? Yeah, and sometimes a lot. There are times when I am so tired of carrying most of the responsibility for everything in our household and relationship and initiating affection.  But he does listen to me when I complain, and when I tell him I need more attention, less computer time, more help around the house and so on, he always tries.  For me the bottom line is that we get along great, the sexual chemistry is amazing and he truly loves me and wants me to me happy.  I do my best to overlook and/or help him with the more annoying ADD traits because of this.  The ADD might be hard to live with, but he's worth it!  (I also try to remember that I'm not perfect - I'm a demanding, uncompromising know-it-all with very high standards - it's probably hard to live with me too)

exhausted lady's picture

Were we dating the same guy?

Seriously Bunsy, your comments hit home so hard to me, it's like we were involved with the same man.  I know that's probably impossible, but I hope the woman who started this thread reads your words and realizes that there is a very real possibility that she is involved with a man EXACTLY like that.  I'm fairly positive the sexual addiction thing is all a part of the hyperfocus problem.  And, everything always revolves around them and their needs.   Once the hyperfocus they've had on you is might as well get used to feeling like chopped liver.  Unappreciated, betrayed, lied to, taken for granted, cheated on, drained completely emotionally and financially, and then blamed for the chaos.  THAT is what life was like for me while I was with my ADD "partner".  Actually, partnership isn't a very good description of the relationship.  More like a host / parasite type situation.  A man like that will suck every bit of joy out of your life, and then move on to the next "new & shiny" thing he sees (ie: willing female).

Yup, he was very charming and sweet, and attentive for the first year or so, and then that switch went to the "off" position and it was like he forgot that I was an actual human.  I was simply there to pick up the messes he left, take care of his every need, and he didn't see anything wrong with that.  I tried to get through to him for WAY too long.  He would sometimes get his head out of his nether region  long enough to give me a little hope, and then it was right back to the same behavior, time and time again.  I finally decided that I needed a partner that didn't resemble a leech and ended things this summer.  Maybe there are some people with ADD that don't have these personality traits, but the guy I was involved with sure did.  The damage they do to the financial, emotional, mental, and physical well being of their partners is devastating.  I am trying to pick up the pieces of my life (still), and I am eternally grateful that I did not marry this man.  So, at least I still have my house.  My credit rating is in tatters, I'm waiting to hear back from the health dept. on my STD status, and it will be a very long time before I can actually trust another man.   I'm in my mid-50's, and starting over at this age is a little daunting, to say the least.

So, my advice to this young woman is to get out.  NOW.  Run as far as possible before she gets hooked into the relationship any more than she already is.  Do NOT have any children with this man!!!!!  The guy she is involved with is showing all the signs of having the same issues my ex has.  I see red flags everywhere.......especially with him pulling the disappearing act and not communicating.  The apartment that looks like a landfill?  That's because he will never grow up enough to clean up after himself.  I'm suprised he even has the dog.  My ex was too self centered to even contemplate having to actually take care of a pet.  I was in bed with pneumonia once for several days.  Mr. Wonderful actually called me once when he was on his way home to inform me that he'd "picked up something and fed himself so I didn't need to worry about it".  Of course it never occurred to him that he should bring something home for me, and I was too sick to get out of bed.  He actually thought he had done something really thoughtful and wanted me to tell him how great he was because he'd found something to eat all by himself.  This, out of the mouth of a 45 year old man. 

I nursed his kids from a previous marriage through several very serious injuries and illnesses.......and while I was doing that he was running around with at least two other women, and complaining because he had to "work late".  While all that was going on he was cold, uncaring, and pretty much plain old rude to me.  I guess at the time he regarded me as just another household appliance, and treated me accordingly.  Anytime I stood my ground and insisted that he follow through with a promise he'd made, either to me or to his kids, he would either sulk for days, erupt in anger, or make me pay the price somehow.  I am still kicking myself for allowing this man to stay in my life for 5 years, because it was 5 years of my life that were totally wasted.

Lots of issues here...

So, jumping over all of the usual stuff, let me ask you this...  You said, "I love him exactly as he is."  The much better question is, do you RESPECT him exactly as he is?  If you don't, the show is over before the curtain ever goes up.

You can't separate the man from the ADHD.  You take one, you take them both.  Every time you complain to him about something, what he actually hears will be his mother or his 6th grade teacher yelling at him telling him he's not trying hard enough.  

You'll be a lot better off telling him now that if he wants you, he's going to have take on an organizational & time management coach, too.  (And a therapist, if he's not already seeing one.) And leave it to the therapist to tell him that responsible grown men with ADHD ought not own a Playstation or any other video game thingy.  




PS - FWIW, I'm the ADHD spouse in our relationship.  My wife is the one in denial.  And, the reason that I am up at 4:00 AM typing is because (typical for an ADHD person) I forgot to take my addreral at the right time, and so I rushed to my satchel, whipped out the medicine bottle and popped a capsule in my mouth.  Did I think about the the fact that it was 6:00PM when I took it?  No.  Why?  Because people with ADHD rush to do things without thinking about all of the ramifications.  And now I'm paying the consequences.  

I feel like sharing my story

FallingNADHDLuv, By writing this, I am not in any way trying to blame my ex for the way our relationship ended, I’m just trying to share my story as others have done here and give you a different perspective so that you know that women can have this problem(s) too.  She is 46 y.o. and is currently working on her Ph.D. degree in clinical psychology.  I am 43 y.o. and work in the legal field.  We both have children from previous marriages.  She has two adult daughters (mid 20s) and one son, age 9.  I have one son, age 11.  We thought that destiny brought us together and that we were meant to be together.

This is my story:  I met NJ June 20, 2009.  We dated for 12 months – off and on.  The whole time, it was a big roller coaster.  A week or two after we first, met, I saw her again at the pool in our apartment complex.  She started our relationship by telling me that she had to apologize to me because she had a sexual dream about me.  We ended up getting sexually involved and before you knew it, I was watching her son, during the nights that she had to work late due to her schedule as a Therapist.  The first 2-3 months were great.  Then, things started to go up and down.  She wrote me a 10 page hand written letter within the first 2-3 months, which was full of hate, resentment, offensive language, etc – she basically told me of what I was going to dye of.  She always found reasons to fight with me.  Granted, I have a temper too, but always chose to walk away or go back to my apartment – which she did not like, since she wanted me to stay and argue with me more.  She broke up with in so many times, that it’s hard to remember how many times exactly.  One day, NJ, her son and I were at a Cub Scouts meeting and she was not happy because I said hello to a lady that I knew, so at the end of meeting, when we were walking out to my truck, she started yelling at me and telling me all kinds of obscene things in front of her 9 y.o. son, because she was very angry and upset.  I did not know what she was angry about until I found out at a later day, when she was calm, because I asked her what happened.  I can go on and on about all the different arguments and break ups during our 12 months of dating.

I always tried to make it work, even after I got the first sign of trouble (the 10 page hand written letter), I called and apologized to her for what I had done and got back together.  I realized that she needed to vent, because may be her job as a counselor/therapist was demanding or perhaps, because she was sexually abused by her biological father when she was 5 y.o. or because her son also had ADHD and was also sexually abused her his own biological father and step brother when the child was 4 or 5 y.o., I don’t know what the real reason was, but I was tried to make the relationship work, over and over and over.

On many occasions, NJ and I made plants, for example, we were going to go on vacation last summer, but for whatever reason, she told me to hit the road and did not want to see me anymore.  One day, she brought up the fact that she wanted us to move in together and make a family for the boys, we then decided that we were going to buy a house together, based on my excellent credit, because she had just declared bankruptcy, but for some reason, she broke up with me again and told me that she did not want to see me again.  She could not manage her finances; she admitted on several occasions that she could not balance her check book and that in fact, she had never balanced her check book her whole life.

I always told her that she had two personalities.  One was the personally that I fell in love with and loved very much and the other personally, was the hurtful, mean, no care in world or did not care about other people’s feelings.  She always found reasons to start an argument, even though, I told her many times that I did not like to argue/fight.

Our relationship was mostly together because we both loved our sex life.  She is a very sexual person and so am I.  But, she requires masturbation all the time.  She explained to me that through out her life, she had had multiple sexual partners and that on previous relationships; her way of getting over other guys was to find another guy the same day and jumped in bed with the new guy that same night.  I initially thought that that behavior was due to her being sexually abused at age 5, but after reading the posting in this website or other books that I got from the library - sex drive increases due to ADHD.  I could never understand why she needed to masturbate so much, because she had me and because she always told me that I satisfied her, but I wanted to deal with it, because I am a sexual person myself.  Which, now looking back, that was the only time that we never argued – we were very comparable in the area.

She always borrowed money and/or told me to buy groceries and/or made all kinds of promises, but never paid me back the money that she owed me or never followed through with her promises.  She kept her house not that clean and I always excused it because I though that she was too busy due to her schooling, job and her ADHD son. 

On several occasions, I told her that I strongly believed that she had ADHD, because she exhibited the same types of behaviors as her son who was diagnosed with ADHD.  She dismissed it as saying that I did not know what I was talking about.  On other days, she did acknowledge that she could not balanced her check book, could not keep up with the house chores, was short tempered, could not handled a lot of stress, her mind raised and had a million thoughts, wondered why she chose a profession that deals with people when she does not real like or trust people, or how she is so depressed that she is unable to get out of bed.  She likes to go to Bingo, but did not do it as often as she wanted to.  She made several impulsive decisions, like buying a whole set of living stuff, just because she broke up with me in May 2010.  When I asked her about it, she dismissed it as something normal that she does when she is mad. 

In June 2010, we talked on the phone and she told me that she wanted to get back together and I told her that she needed to see a doctor to helper her with her ADHD and she responded that she was worried about the side affects of the medications and did not know how it would affect her personality.

I’ve suspected that she was either talking to some one online or by phone, but could not prove it, because I am not one of those people that like to snoop around.  I believe in trust in the relationship and trusting your partner.  I caught her in so many lies.  I found out that she liked to trash me to her friends and family.  She always blamed me to everything that went wrong in our relationship.  She never apologized for all the hurtful things that she said and did or all those empty promises.

Since we were unable to buy the house that we wanted (due to the fact that she changed her mind more than once), we were able to find a house out in the country and signed a lease agreement early May 2010.  However, on my son’s birthday weekend during which we were planning to celebrate his birthday at the new house, on May 29, 2010, NJ decided to break up with me for sure, so she told me to get out of the house or if I would not leave, then she should leave, but that we could not leave together at the house.  Obviously, I left.  We tried to be friends for the month of June, but I noticed that she started flirting with other guys more openly than before, in front of the boys and I.  Later I found out that she had another guy over to the house the same day that she broke up with me (5/29/10), but when I confronted her, she said that it was nothing.  Mid July 2010, we attended a Christian Church Camp together and I over heard her talking about me, so I decided to leave the camp (I do not like to make scenes) because when I confronted her in private, she denied the whole scenario.  Two days later, my son and I came back to the church camp because NJ’s son was going to be baptized; however, we were only there for about an hour, when NJ had us kicked out of the camp, because she did not want us there and made this whole scene in front of all the people at the camp. We did not talk for about 7-8 weeks, I tried emailing her, no reply; I called her cell the last week of August 2010 and told her how much I love/care/worry about her and ended up writing her a letter with all my questions as to how our relationship went from good to worse (closure letter).  Instead of answering or calling, she called the Sheriff Department.  On September 1, 2010, I received a call from a sheriff deputy telling me that NJ had filed a harassment complaint against because she did not want any contact me, because I was extremely controlling and told me to never contact her again, which I never did again.

I did not understand why she did all of these things and why she had to end it the way she did.  Why she made all those plants for our future and all of those empty promises, which she never followed through.  I was devastated.  I was heart broken.  I felt that I must have done something wrong or may be not enough.  So, I decided that since she did not want to give me an answer as to why our relationship ended the way it did; I went to the library and read books as well as articles online.  I found this site very helpful, because it made me realized that I did not do anything wrong and that she is not an evil person.  All that happened was just her un-diagnosed ADHD or her lack of desire to get help.  I remember that last letter that she wrote; it said that she tanked God that I am out of their lives!  She also said that I only brought her conflict and that as soon as I was not present, peace returned.

Thank you for writing your stories, because it has helped me cope with the loss of the person that I thought was the love of my life and my best friend; and because I felt guilty that I did not do enough to help her and make this relationship last.  In my heart, I feel that she will come back into my life, but my head tells me that I would be a fool if I trust and believe her again.  I’m taking it one day at a time.  Thanks.

exhausted lady's picture

Give it LOTS of time before you decide.....

Hi FallingNADHDLuv ........I'm probably acting as the devil's advocate here.  I admit my relationship might not be the norm with an ADD/ADHD partner.  But, due to how little time you've been seeing this man, yeah, you are, for sure, in the hyperfocus stage.  It seems to last for up to a couple of years.  Since your BF is on meds, and is aware of his condition, and what that means, he might be able to keep things under control.  Maybe.  HUGE maybe. 

I'm not sure what age you are, but you did mention that you have a child already.  Please go into this whole thing VERY slowly, and with a lot of caution.  And, please keep in touch with this website so your eyes are wide open and not blinded by love.  I stayed blind, and tried everything I knew of, to make the relationship work.  I was truly head over heals in love with Mr. Wonderful.  He said he was in love with me, told me I was the best thing that ever happened to him, etc. etc........and I'm sure at the time, he meant what he said.  But, the hyperfocus switched off and, I was his caretaker from then on.  I think even with an ADD'er who's on meds, and is in treatment, the partner is STILL going to be the "adult" in the relationship.  Are you really OK with that?  Think long and hard before you make that commitment, because it means that the disorder will rule your life from that point on.  My S.O. was on meds too, when we met.  He quit taking them at some point after he moved in with me.  I was overwhelmed with other issues at the time and didn't questions it.  BIG mistake!  As time went on, his symptoms got worse, and the ADD took over the man I loved, the man I thought I knew.  I looked for him inside the stranger that was living with me for years, and I finally gave up.

My S.O. was usually employed, but he had (another) falling out with the boss last year.  He spent most of the following 8 months doing absolutely nothing but cruising internet porn sites, chatting with other women, and watching TV.  Unemployment got denied, financial strain hit, (big time).  I no longer have a retirement fund, because that's the only way we could make ends meet.  Like I said, I'm lucky to still have my home. 

I've read several other posts that make reference to the fact that the symptoms get worse as the person gets older.  BELIEVE THEM!   If he's already showing signs of a sexual addiction problem, believe me, that will get a lot worse once his hyperfocus on you fades into the sunset.   Keep an eye on the big picture - ie:  is he paying his bills, staying in the same job, cleaning up after himself, keeping promises, following through with plans made, and keeping in contact with his existing child?  If not, my advice would be to cut your losses now.  If he really IS trying to overcome the symptoms, and stay in control of his life, well......maybe.   But, remember that YOU are the "new & shiny thing" in his life right now.  This is the best part of the relationship,  by far.  Is it good enough to invest your soul into it?  Only you can answer those questions.  Once the "new & shiny" phase wears off, things are going to change, and chances are, they won't change for the better.

I wish I'd known more about ADD when I met my ex.  It would have explained a lot, and maybe my self esteem wouldn't be in the shape it's in.  Be prepared to be totally ignored for a large portion of your life, if you decide to stay.  For the past three years, I haven't even gotten a card from him for my birthday, Valentine's Day, our "anniversary", a Christmas present, or anything else to tell me I was special in any way, shape or form.  He "forgot".  Now, he is behaving like he's the wronged party because I asked him to leave my home.  He just doesn't "get it" and probably never will.  You have a chance to take a good hard look at things now, before you are emotionally invested in the situation (I hope) and evaluate the risk involved.  Both to you and to your child.  Remember, the way he has treated his child will become the way he treats your child (if you're lucky).  Does he pay child support?  Does he have visitation, and does he in fact stay involved in his child's life?  Look at the big picture......and if things are skewed, don't think you can "fix" it.  You can't.

exhausted lady's picture

I wish I knew the answer.......

 Dear FallingNADHDLuv ......I wish I knew the answer to that question.  Those are the things that tore my life with my S.O. to pieces.  If he wants to be able to date other people "for a minute", I think you'd better have some serious conversations with him about why.  Even "normal" people get cold feet about commitment.  Especially after you've been burned a couple of times.  I have commitment issues myself, that pre-dated my relationship with my ADD guy (otherwise I probably would've married him, and that would have been a disaster).  But, you've got to listen to what he's saying.  He's saying he's not ready for the long haul, is what I'm getting from that statement.  Believe him. 

I think the Prince Charming phase is the hyperfocus.  Followed by a total lack of focus on the woman who has fallen head over heals in love with him.  Followed by a hyperfocus on the next willing female.  And believe me, a man doesn't have to be good at making plans to have an affair behind your back and then lie like a rug about it.  I know that not all ADD'ers are that way, but it seems to be a fairly common problem from what I've been reading here.  What really struck me, was the fact that he EXPECTED to be forgiven, instantly, for screwing another woman in my house, in my bed.  Like it was his right, because he said "I'm sorry".   It was like my feelings about being betrayed and lied to like that meant nothing.  A simple "I'm sorry" was supposed to make things right again, so he could do it again.  I DID try my best to forgive him.  And then, I watched the behavior leading up to the actual deed starting up again, and I decided to call it a day. The writing on the wall was very plain and I decided to believe it this time.  He had broken every single promise he'd made to me on the "other women" subject, and betrayed my trust numerous times by that point.  My life is SO much more peaceful without him in my space, it's unreal.  I've spent months cleaning up piles of junk he left, and I'm still getting overdue notices in his name in my mailbox because he hasn't bothered to do the address change with the post office even though he's been gone for 3 months.  I guess I'm going to have to file the address change for him (as usual).  Will this ever end?

In my opinion, your BF telling you he wants to date other people "for a minute", is the writing on the wall.  For a minute?  Try for a lifetime.  That would be my guess. 

I think the people with ADD/ADHD are so disconnected from how other people think, feel and operate, they just can't related to the pain & devastation they cause.  They act completely on impulse, and then are SO puzzled when they have to actually deal with the fallout from their actions.  My ex honestly couldn't figure out why I was so hurt and angry.  He has no cause / effect connection in his brain at all.  That's the scary part.  The person he was with (that time) had come out of a situation where it was very likely that she might carry HIV, yet he had unprotected sex with her and didn't think twice about it, or what long term consequences it might have.  Hence my trip to the clinic.  I watched a close relative die of AIDS, and I could (literally) kill him for taking a chance like that with my life. 

He seems to exist in a bubble that keeps him protected from the pain he causes other people, but it also keeps him from enjoying the benefits of a normal life.  The joys of interacting with his kids......he pretty much ignored them and depended on me to feed, cloth, care for, and keep them in line.  I'd already raised my child, and I certainly didn't sign on to raise another brood without any help from their father.  I did my best for them, and I do love them, but they have a mother and father and that wasn't my job.  I always told them I was their "bonus mom".......I feel badly that he just kind of quit being there for them.  He will come to the rescue in extreme circumstances, but after the drama is over.....he's mentally out of the picture.  That's why I mentioned the part about your BF being in his child's life.  Mine left all that stuff (and there's a LOT) up to me.  He was too busy on the computer to be bothered by helping with homework, or taking them anyplace on the weekends, or anything else.  It's sad, but he's basically taken an exit from all the people who love him to chase the next new & shiny thing.  I don't think he will ever be able to have a relationship with a woman with a healthy mind, and he's admitted as much.  So be it. 

I don't know if this whole sad situation would happen to you.  But, you need to know that it's possible.  Especially if the porn / sex addict thing has reared it's ugly head.  And, it is ugly, believe me.  Please, please be very careful and think long and hard before you commit to this relationship any further.  If he's already backing off, I don't think that's a good sign.  Please value your life and your emotional well-being above all else.  A man worth being around will value your well-being, and be supportive of YOU.  Please keep that in mind.

One sided perspective

I want to point out that reading this site probably gives a fairly one sided perspective.  People come here because they are unhappy, on the brink of divorce, confused and so on.  I'm sure there are plenty of ADD relationships where things move along similarly to other marriages (as in they have their ups and downs but not quite as much as the relationships you see described here).  

I also advise you to move slowly with eyes open, but as you have said yourself, your guy knows he has ADD, he is on medication and he tries to work with it.  That already probably gives you a head start.  Don't pre-doom the relationship because you're scared from what you read here.  

hockeymom11's picture

totally agree Tasla

I agree with what Tasla is telling you: you ARE one step ahead of most of us.  Your guy knows he has a problem, is willing to work on it (it's not an overnite fix!!).  You too must be willing to work on yourself, your response to his "quirks" etc.  You're starting out right by taking it slow, making sure this is what you want. But Tasla said it perfect "don't pre-doom yourself".  Many of us have spouses who WONT get help and thats a HUGE difference.  Us non-ADDrs need to learn better responses than anger and frustration, especially if the ADDr is trying. 

I would only advise you to take your time.  My whirlwind courtship and marriage was in the midst of hyperfocus phase and I look back now and wished I would have waited a year or two with a longer engagement.