I feel hope now that I've found this Web site but I'm still exhausted. I have been married to my ADD husband for almost 7 years. I'm not sure exactly when it started getting worse but five or six months ago all we were doing was fighting. I was not totally aware of how difficult life is for him and letting my anger take control. He started avoiding me. I worked all day and most nights at three jobs while he was unemployed and doing the things he wanted to do (or perhaps felt he needed to do -- things I find odd but that he finds important -- like collecting "valuable" items from dumpsters and then finding a place for said items in a storage trailer) and when I came home he would either already be gone or on his way out the door.
We separated in March for a short time and began getting counselling both together and separate and he is now seeing a psychiatrist so his meds can be properly managed. This has helped but not 100%. Finding this site helps me to better understand ADD and especially ADD in a marriage.
I should mention that he has been diagnosed with ADD for several years, before we married. But it seems to be getting worse. Is this possible? Or is it me having less tolerance? I feel like I'm the parent -- I've seen others make this same comment so I know I'm not crazy. I've raised my three kids. I want a husband! Not another kid! He realizes this, he's the one who actually said this is why I'm so angry, so it's not like he's oblivious to this problem.
I can't talk to my/our friends any more about my difficult marriage because they want to know why I stay with him in the first place. It's good to know there are other women in similar situations, even though I wish no one had to live like this!
Is there a chat room online that any one knows of? Sometimes I want a person to talk to RIGHT NOW or I feel like I'm going crazy. Our friends do listen if I'm having a particulary bad day but many don't understand why I stay with him.
I stay with him because I love him and want to be with him. I didn't marry him for the good times, ya know? And after reading much of the posts on this site I believe we can work it out -- I understand better that there are things I need to do differently. I was already picking up on that through the counselling. This just reinforces the counsellor's advice and adds to it.
Some of the things he does: sleeps ALOT -- it blows my mind! Hasn't worked in over a year. Collects things other people have thrown away and stores it, then spends hours (usually at night) "processing" this stuff. He says it's worth money but he won't part with it. Puts off important things: calling the psychiatrist, going to the dentist, paying bills. He gets over-bearing in social situations -- wants to be the center of attention -- a lot of this is covered on this site and I will try some of the suggested techniques. Wanders off without telling me he's leaving or if he gets mad at me he'll go away sometimes for up to 24 hours. Has very little concept of time. Gets really angry over small things and denies this -- says he's just joking around. I get scared when he does this.
All of this is familiar to all of you, I'm sure from reading so much of the same here today.
Here's my part in the marriage: I returned to school and got my BA and MA during our marriage while working part time for most of my years as a student. (He worked some, too.) I now have 3 jobs to support us. One job is the basic 9-5 with good insurance, the second is teaching at night which requires lots of planning and research and writing, the third freelance research, it's sporadic -- usually done on lunch hours and other squeeze in times. So I'm tired at the end of the day. I should say that I LOVE my jobs so at least I don't have the stress of a bad work environment. I'm also a neat freak. I like my house to be clean, very clean. Especially the bathroom and kitchen. I like things to be where they belong so I don't have to waste time looking for whatever it is I want (Husband likes to re-arrange things, like where the scissors and saran wrap and pens are). I don't like to be alone. After work when I have time I like to go out, I like to be with my husband and our friends. He's often asleep but when I go to bed he'll go out and do things -- go to a bar or just drive around, even with the price of fuel!
Things we've tried: lists used to work very well; he won't do them any more. I ask him to do one or two things each day to help me (take something out for dinner, do laundry) or remind him of one or two things HE said he wanted to do. How many times have I come home to find him laying in bed and he admits he's been there all day? I couldn't tell you. And of course the counselling and new psychiatrist and new meds.
My husband accuses me of criticizing and persecuting him. Perhaps this is what it seems like to him. To me, it seems like he is torturing me. Because he has ADD he can sleep when he wants, have no responsibility, spend the money I earn and want so desparately to save, and get angry (he denies this) at me for being fed up.
I want a better life.
I know he loves me. He is fun, brilliant, creative, sexy, kind, helpful to others to a fault, insightful. He does help me in a lot of ways and he was so supportive of me when I was in school. He compliments me and is, as far as I know, faithful. He's a huge flirt (did I mention he is sexy?) and his flirtations with other women are usually in front of me, not disrespectful, and flattering. Our sex life is good, not what it used to be, but I'm not complaining.
I am trying to just have a life when he sleeps or is depressed or doesn't want to do things. I spend time with my friends and try not to say anything to them about how miserable I am.
If I had to quantify our relationship I'd say I'm about 75% leaning toward divorce. I want a better life for both of us. I want some peace and happiness for myself. I want help financially and emotionally.
Thanks for listening and any advice. The anger and frustration suck, to put it bluntly. It's wearing me out. Oh, and thanks for the hope.