So, is this just another of the aspects of ADHD? Hoarding?
I was first learning about ADHD around 1995 when my son was in first grade. As time progressed towards high school, his backpack was definitely the 'black-hole' that is so common with ADHD children. I could clearly understand its correlation with executive function. He was unable to discern what to keep and what to throw away. It seemed to never fail, if he did throw something out, he needed it at a later date. So, his way of coping was to keep it all.
At age 23, I am so glad for him that he has developed the skills to throw stuff away. Or, ask someone to help help him sort stuff out. He trusts that I would not just pitch it all as worthless trash, as I respect/understand him. He keeps a lot of stuff I see as worthless - and I understand with his creative mind, he can come up with 101 uses for a piece of wire- practical or artistic.
Then we have the ADHD spouse. Formally diagnosed 2 years ago at age 53. I know I am singing to the choir when I say I realized my husband's ADHD in 1995, the same time as we found our son's.
Oh, how to untangle the hoard of stuff that burst out of my husband's work van, and the barn - upstairs and down - and out from behind the bushes and behind the barn, and over and around his desk. I am embarrassed to have friends come over and see what has become of our yard. So far, we have been able to keep it in the barn and behind the barn. But as that space has filled up, my spouse has started to complain that I am squeezing him out of our space.
One of the saddest things I realized in our relationship was the disappointment that our gifts and skills could not compliment each other. I am very organized. I THOUGHT when we married it would be a perfect blend, as I could be the helpmate who was behind the scenes keeping our lives organized. Nope. It was HIS stuff. And he would not let me help him. He sees my organizational skills as obsessive and controlling. Plus, he didn't want to be told what to do. Sad.
I am losing my grip on stuff-control. I went back to college last January. With not being home 24/7, the ability I had to keep the clutter at bay has diminished greatly. Overwhelmed am I. To the max.