My husband and I have been married for almost 9 years and are both medical students. I was diagnosed with ADD (mostly inattentive plus major depression and general anxiety disorder) in Nov of '06 after failing most of my med school classes. The last year and a half have been a struggle for me in terms of giving myself a crash course in adult ADD and using therapy and medication to start the process of acceptance, as well as dealing with the humiliation that comes along with having any kind of learning issues in medical school, let alone just walking around with ADD. While I was progressing through the issues, trying to get back to some semblance of 'normal' for me, so that I could be a fully functioning partner in our relationship, my husband's anger and resentment has been festering (unbeknownst to me). I think the anti-depressants/anxiety meds were dampening my relationship 'radar', to some extent. When I recently decided to come off of them, I feel like I've woken up to my worst nightmare. I feel more alive and passionate about my husband than I have in a long time but he hasn't known what to do about his side of the process so he's still stuck in all the resentment and anger. Unfortunately, med school is not the time or place that you want to be working on major relationship issues (hence, the reason so many medical students get divorced) so we are struggling to dig our way out of this mess. I am beginning to feel resentful, myself, because I have worked my butt off for the last year and a half to pull myself out of the hole I was in but he's just been sitting on all of his emotions, not knowing what to do. I do have to acknowledge that he came into the marriage with very few relationship building skills and, although he has shown some major growth in that area, reaching out to me or taking the initiative to stimulate some growth in our marriage is still difficult for him. So, now I'm ready to start moving on but am facing the fallout of years of pent up anger and judgment. I think we need to see a marriage therapist (he and I are already seeing therapists individually) to help guide us through this, although the logistics of doing that are going to be tricky. I just feel like we're stuck. I don't feel I can allow myself to trust him emotionally, if he is going to judge me everytime I make another mistake. And he just doesn't know how to work through his we're at a sort of stand-off. To be fair, I am definitely super sensitive to any sort of criticism regarding my efforts to do what I said I would do or to any mistakes I make repeatedly. If I knew how to not repeat them over and over again, I wouldn't be writing to you all. I know I've neglected him throughout this whole med school catastrophe (been going on about 3 years now). With the threat of flunking out of med school hanging over my head everyday, I just wasn't capable of anything more than surviving day-to-day. I feel terrible about it but know there was no way for me to do it any differently. And he is making some effort to work through his issues. The problem for me is that a lot of this work goes on in his head. I don't know if he's thinking about stuff or when, and he doesn't come to me to get more information about my experiences or to share any realizations he might have come to. I know this is ending up being all about what he's doing wrong. This wasn't my intention. I just don't know what to do from my side. Our relationship has crossed some lines recently, that we were careful not to cross in the past, so now I am really beginning to get worried about this resentment getting out of hand (on both our parts). I really don't feel comfortable just letting him be and waiting for him to figure his stuff out. But I also want to make sure that I am pulling my weight and taking responsibility for my own issues. How do we break out of this holding pattern?

Thoughts from our Readers?

Before I comment on this, I would love to hear from our readers - what do you suggest?

Melissa Orlov

I would suggest you change

I would suggest you change your major. I had picked geology as my major. I LOVE Geology. In invertribate palentology I had to memorize kingdom, phylum, speciies, family, etc. for some 300 creatures that had been extinct for over a million years. You talk about an impossible task for someone with ADD... well... at least it was impossible for me. I ended up with a general studies degree in geography. Hey, at least I got a degree. Take the pressure off! Help your husband get through medical school while you get a degree in something you'd really enjoy. Play, and have fun. Just a suggestion..... OK! Hang in there sister.

Good suggestion, but I would

Good suggestion, but I would imagine she's already $100K in debt from med school with no way to pay it off unless she finishes school. I would just finish (4th year is the easiest anyway) and pick a low stress specialty (?pathology) which would allow more time to catch up and work on the relationship. Good luck!

Have you discovered

Have you discovered Neurofeedback? After my son was diagnosed with ADHD, I discovered through his diagnosis that I had ADD. We did not want to Medicate him, and were given the option of Neurofeedback- Biofeedback for the brain. Then with his success, I decided that I needed to do Neurofeedback. I saw my attention span go from 2% to 50%- Average for most people. I no longer have to suffer through the streaming noise in my head. I can concentrate like anyone else. I wish I'd have known this when I was in College. My Music Degree would have been a lot easier!


Your comment really intrigued me, especially since I have recently been diagnosed with ADHD and my Musical Degrees would have also been alot easier with this knowledge! Can you describe the neurofeedback? Is there a particular program, and where would I look for this? Thanks!