Long story short -- Married 20 years.  Lots of ups and downs.  I knew my wife had ADHD but didn't realize it was contributing to so many of our bad times, making bad things worse.  There were many problems she perceived as real but I now realize that it was a problem with her perception rather than an external situation that could be resolved.  Fighting these imaginary battles squandered our energy, youth, finances, careers, and friendships.

In the last 9 months it has gone to extremes.  She has finally started medication, but I am reeling from the emotional turmoil.  This should be one of the best times in our life together.  Everything is good right now, yet my wife has gotten more and more unstable, which in turn destroys the stability in our home, which in turn makes it very difficult to experience what should be the happiest time of my life.

Sites like this and a few books have helped me understand what is going on now and in the past.  Understanding is, of course, helpful.  I am doing my best to let go of the pain she has caused, especially recently when her condition became so much worse.

I love my wife.  However, I need some things for my own happiness and well-being.  I need a certain amount of stability for a healthy lifestyle and the opportunity for happiness.  In the last few years I have become more self-aware and learned that peace in my home and personal relationships gives me the strength needed to overcome and be productive.  I simply cannot be happy without a certain amount of stability.

The more I've learned about ADHD in the last few weeks, the less optimistic I am about our marriage, friendship, partnership.  I have needs and desires that won't be met by the random, unstable lifestyle that I'm experiencing now and have so often over the years,  I got married for the friendship, companionship, growth, and intimacy.  All of that is gone now.  It is not possible for me to have those things with someone who randomly shows up and destabilizes everything the moment she walks in the door.  I sure as blazes didn't get married to be someone's caretaker / parent and I refuse to accept that role.

Love is simply not enough for what I consider to be a successful relationship.  We can all love people that are not right for us.

Life and relationships require that people show up.  I understand from the books that I have to "let go" of all expectations, but that isn't going to work for me.  I cannot share life with someone that simply never shows up.  Once in a while, sure, I've lived with that, but not all the time and every day.

What is the point of having a life with someone who isn't there?  If you can't count on someone to be there, why bother?

Can anyone explain to me how to make this work without giving up on everything I want from a romantic partnership?