First step towards learning to NOT be a rescuer...

So... Long story short, have been with my ADD DP for seven years and have always been a rescuer (But have only recently learned that this is what I have been doing)  Dp has only known about his ADD for 3 months and we are suprised at all the things we have been doing completely WRONG...

I took my first step towards STOPPING this behaviour... We are living seperately at this stage, as we both need the space to recover from a long hard road of smashing our heads together, and he asked me to text the property manager and let her know the rent was going to be late.  Ordinarily I would've just done it and not even thought twice.  THIS time I said "I mean this in the nicest possible way, but its not my responsibility.  Her number is XXXXXX.  Please dont be offended by this, I am only trying to help you help yourself xxx"

This was a good move yes??

YES, that is exactly what you

YES, that is exactly what you need to start doing...letting him take care of his own business is a good start. The only warning I would give you is pointing out to him WHY you are doing it because even though you do need to let him do it himself, you do need to stop doing it FOR YOU as much as you need to stop doing it for him AND you do not want him to feel like a child ("I'm doing this for your own good") so in the future I would say "I am really busy and do not have time, I'm sorry but you will have to handle that yourself"

You need to look at breaking this cycle as a way of becoming a "better you" vs. doing it so you can force him into some kind of 'grown up'. If you'll read about the Karpman Drama Triangle, you'll understand more why the rescuer role is as bad for relationships as someone who always wants to play the victim. Believe me, I know...I've been a rescuer as long as I can remember...from my first marriage on. Twenty five years or longer. Eek.

This also involves not rescuing them emotionally as well...which is a lot tougher than saying "sorry, you need to send that text yourself". This involves a lot of listening and saying "I'm sorry that is happening to you" and doing NOTHING to try and fix their moods, messes, and chaos. It will be one of the hardest things you've ever had to try and do...but in the end, everyone is happier and are able to grow stronger emotionally. You (and I) just have to trust that in the end they will stand on their own two feet. It took me a long, long time to be able to listen and NOT give advice, not give my opinion, not fall apart when he was emotionally (seemingly) falling apart, and not try to convince him to make decisions other than the ones he was making even though I felt they were not 'best'.

Another example is when he gets offended by something...and will leave the room mumbling about how it wasn't important anyway or how unappreciated he is. I used to follow him or text him and try and 'fix' the situation, but not anymore. I would exhaust myself to the point of no return if I tried to keep up with every time he was offended over him mis-reading my body language, the look on my face, me not looking at him when he's talking, me speaking at the wrong time ('interrupting him before he was done making his 20 minute point'), etc. It isn't that I don't respect him or that I am not interested in what he has to say, it is just that cue are often misread and occasionally he gets offended by some mysterious offense. I didn't do anything wrong, therefore I am not hunting him down and trying to 'fix' the situation. I don't want his feelings to be hurt but I've learned in 14 years that if he's convinced I did something wrong, there isn't much convincing him otherwise. 

Once you start stepping away and taking care of yourself and drawing lines in the sand and stepping out of the rescuer role, they will fight tooth and nail to get you back in it. Things can, and often do, get worse before they get better. Thicken your skin because it is NOT easy. I am 2 months in and only real recently saw a glimpse of him standing and holding himself accountable and TRYING. It will not happen overnight. Be strong.