I came across this site after searching for information online about how to control my spouse's spending. It had never occurred to me that my husband might have ADHD, but after looking through the blog and forum posts a lot of it (thought not all) rings true to our situation.
We've been married for two years and I constantly feel like I'm at my wit's end. Our main problem is my husband's lack of income and his inability to track the money he does spend from our bank account. I'm pretty frugal and had a substantial amount of savings when we married which is now gone, and I make enough that we should be able to live off my salary without being in the red each month. However, he'll spend hundreds of dollars a week on groceries, household items, and other random things (alcohol, guitar parts, etc.). In order to make ends meet I've pretty much stopped spending any money on myself and have had to borrow money from my parents. I've chalked his spending up to him being bored and wanting an excuse to get out of the house, and have tried to get him to keep his receipts and track his spending and generally play a more active role in managing our finances so we don't spend more than I bring in each month. He says he'll try but he just can't seem to do it. I think he genuinely thinks he's spending less in his mind, but he's not capable of sitting down and looking objectively at the numbers. It's finally gotten to the point that I've decided to take away his access to our debit and credit cards and just give him a weekly cash allowance, which I should have done a long time ago but didn't because I wanted to avoid fighting about it.
I feel so much like I am his mother rather than his wife. I have to make sure everything runs smoothly in the household, pay all bills and balance our budget, cajole him into doing things like going to the doctor (and even then I have to make the appointment for him). He's a huge procrastinator. There are numerous things around the house that he needs to repair and he'll just ignore them for weeks or months, despite my repeated requests. I feel like a total nag, and I can tell he resents it. I thought it might help if I made a to-do list of all the things that needed to be done and ask him to do just one thing a week (I offered to help him too). He agreed, then didn't do anything for a week. This morning we got in a huge fight because my mom is coming to visit in a few days and he got overwhelmed by the list, attacking me for putting pressure on him and expecting him to do all of the tasks before she gets here (although I repeatedly told him I didn't expect that). He puts things off and then gets totally frazzled and stressed out when he finally has to scramble to do them, or he'll self-impose deadlines on himself, ignoring things that need to be done while focusing on something that to me doesn't seem necessary ("productive procrastination"). My general sense is that he can't manage his time well, effectively estimate how long it will take to get something done, or prioritize things in a way that makes sense.
There is constant clutter in his wake and he does, to my mind, a minimum of cleaning and picking up around the house, although he thinks he pulls his weight by cooking dinner, running/emptying the dishwasher, and doing his own laundry (after it's been on the bedroom floor for a week). I feel like I'm constantly cleaning up after him but if I ask for more help, he'll either brush me off or get angry. If he doesn't care about something being done but I do, he simply doesn't seem to see the value in it and won't do it, or will only do it later when he feels like it. It feels like a total power struggle. I've never felt like I was an anal person about cleaning before, but since we moved in together I've become obsessed with keeping things clean and neat and I resent him for not seeming to care. I think it's the only thing I feel in control of anymore.
He doesn't really seem to have trouble remembering things or trailing off in the middle of a conversation. He actually has a very good memory and can talk the ears off an elephant, to the point that I often feel overwhelmed by his monologues (I am, in contrast, fairly quiet). He has anger management issues and is never one to avoid a conflict, in fact he seems to embrace it and feels fine after we have a big fight whereas it will take me hours or days to recover. (I have depression which doesn't help things, and makes me very confused about how much of our problems might be attributed to my own issues -- I know I'm not perfect). He has problems with authority, and has a chip on his shoulder because he thinks people don't appreciate him or his abilities. He has pot and alcohol dependencies, although he's not an alcoholic. He's said before that pot helps him focus. He spends each evening in front of the TV watching movies and does not consider that time to be available for doing anything productive. He stays up late, wakes up early, and is usually tired. He's trying to establish himself as a professional musician and I support him in that because he's very talented, but in the meantime he has made what seem to me to be very half-hearted attempts to find part-time work. There are a lot of jobs he just won't apply for, even though to me it's gotten way past the point that he should be applying for anything and everything just to help support us. He gives up easily and gets angry if he doesn't get a job he's applied for, taking it personally. He's constantly blaming and criticizing others -- outwardly he is very charming and friendly, but he seems like a different person when we're alone, always negative. He's in a couple of bands and teaches music lessons to a few students and is good at managing his schedule for those things, but doesn't seem to have the ability to make good use of the rest of the time he has. I get very resentful going to my 40-hour-a-week job and leaving him home all day to do as he pleases, while feeling like he has very little to show for it. At the same time, he seems to think that he is always busy and doesn't have time to get the things done that he needs to. I sort of feel like we're living on different planets.
I think about divorce on a regular basis. I feel like the challenges of living with him outweigh the few positives i'm getting out of our relationship. I'm not ready to give up yet, but I also don't know how long I can live like this. I wonder if I'm too overbearing and try not to "control" him, but it just leaves me feeling miserable, like I'm getting the short end of the stick. Does this sound like it could be a case of ADHD? Thanks for reading my long post and I appreciate any insight.