I finally plucked up my courage to share my experience in this forum. Apologies in advance for the long essay.
When I first read an article by Melissa Orlov on ADHD marriage, I cried so badly because many of the points mentioned resonate with what I experienced in the past 3 years. It’s like I finally understood what I was going through.
My husband & I dated for 6 years & we are married for 3 years. We have a 3 year-old child.
He was loving towards me when we were dating & even planned a surprise overseas trip to propose to me. I loved him for his high & seemingly endless energy, he is super focused with his job & always looking to do / learn new things. He would work on his laptop late into the night even after we went out & had a long day, he would wake up early on weekends to work when most people may sleep in. I admired that, I thought he was super committed to his career. He studied courses online or after work, obtained a postgraduate diploma & exceled at his assignments. He enjoys traveling & will plan detailed , sometimes impulsive, overseas trips. It felt exciting & all I had to do was pack my luggage & follow.
But in other areas of life, he has always been messy, disorganized & forgetful. Every day, he will forget where he placed his hand phone, wallet, glasses & asking for help to locate them. He will forget important appointments, miss to pay his bills & end up with late charges. He also cannot sit still & is constantly fidgeting, he says it helps him focus. Sometimes he will be so hyperactive he talks excessively without much content. I did not read too much into these, I thought that most guys are like this.
Everything felt like a fun adventure until it all came crashing down after we got married & I became pregnant. During my entire pregnancy & after the baby came, I suddenly felt so abandoned & alone. He seemed to have completely lost interest in me, & he became obsessive with playing computer games late into the night, being in his own world changing from one hobby to the next. I was left confused, angry, bitter, wondering what I have done wrong & why he does not seem to love me anymore. I thought he was having an extramarital affair.
Moving into our own house added further strain to the relationship as he will always mess up, does not help out with chores unless I nag at him excessively & when he did finally help out he did so unwillingly. I find myself constantly reminding, nagging him around & I felt more like his mother than his wife. We no longer have common topics to talk about, he does not reply to my messages or the cute baby photos I sent him throughout his work day, claiming he does not even have 5 seconds to reply me. It also felt like he can’t be bother with & doesn’t want to care for our child until she was almost 2 years old. He just switched-off on us.
He also became incredibly rude & cruel to me, ignoring my needs when I struggled with breastfeeding, mastitis & lack of sleep. Once I had to visit a breast surgeon to remove an abscess due to the infection, the procedure was painful despite having local anesthesia & I could hardly walk after we left the clinic. He did not care & walked ahead, leaving me struggling to catch up with him. When I got upset with his behavior, he chided me that it should not be painful because of the anesthesia.
Being treated like this daily turned my hurt turned into frustration & anger. I fought aggressively to gain his attention & support, but it was a losing battle that ended with him thinking I went crazy & retreated further away into his own world. Simply calling his name when he is working will make him all agitated (on hindsight, maybe this simple act of calling him distracted him from his work). When confronted, he does not seem to know what went wrong & always think that the marriage is going well. I felt he was just sweeping all the issues under the carpet & refused to address them. He does not even hold my hand, comfort or hug me & needless to say the intimacy was non-existent. We don’t say “I love u / miss you” anymore. We became housemates sharing a child & house.
We tried to go for marriage counseling but his ego prevented us from returning, I went for counseling on my own. I struggled to stay afloat coping with the baby, household chores, keeping my career without the love & support of a husband. I could never have imagined myself being so broken & in a loveless marriage. His mindless remarks & behavior will often trigger explosive inferno from me. It just felt like a never ending rollercoaster & vicious cycle. I became suicidal & considered a divorce to save my sanity.
He saw a psychiatrist last year but he came back to tell me the doctor said he is fine & has no ADHD.
I don’t think he was entirely honest during the diagnosis & went just for the sake of proving me wrong.
Earlier this month, he did an online adult ADHD quiz & finally admitted the outcome was borderline adult ADHD.
Things are slowly improving as I learn more about ADHD & also pointing out what I think are the symptoms to him. I think this helps with his awareness & he is slowly becoming more helpful. There are still some bad days. I know he wants a second child but I’m so afraid of being abandoned & going back to that dark period in life again. I feel we should work on improving the marriage first before considering another child.
I wish to seek the advice of everyone here do you think I am in an ADHD marriage?
Should we seek a second opinion on his ADHD diagnosis & will medication help?
Thank you for reading & any advice will be greatly appreciated.