How to be autonomous and loving at the same time

I do not know how to focus on what makes me happy, and living my life, and maintaining loving behavior. Truly, I have been at this a very, very long time. After 2 more 'forgettings' about spending time and attention on our non-existent sex life, I chose not to bring it up, but feel frozen inside. My husband acts as if everything is the same, NEVER addresses any negative issues, and continues on being affection with his loving words. But,  has even stepped it up a notch, which lets me know that he is aware that all is not well. He probably doesn't remember what the issue is and will certainly not ask 'what's up'. I told him that since we seem to be roommates instead of husband and wife, I will stop doing certain things. I don't make his coffee in the morning, I have stopped making his lunch. What I find very difficult is not wanting to punch him when he kisses me when he gets home from work or when he gets up in the morning. I find it very difficult to sleep in the same bed with him. Roommates don't sleep together! And yet, here I am, doing things that I find ridiculous because I don't know how to stop them. I don't know how to say, "don't kiss and pretend everything is okay unless you are willing to talk and to DO something about it". I don't know how to say, "I'm moving out of the bedroom until you follow the suggestions given by the 100s of therapists we have seen". I don't know how to stay or how to leave! I am so sick of myself staying and not demanding better for myself. What would I tell a friend? Why can't I be my own best friend? Making small talk, shallow, inconsequential banter is making me sick. I need help with being able to be affectionate and autonomous at the same time. I want to learn how to live for me and not worry about this sexless marriage. What would I be doing if he weren't here. I would be working, talking with friends, visiting with friends, watching TV, going to the movies, all the same stuff that I do now. So, I don't know how to change my thinking and I need help. 

There is a way to start...

I'm new to all this with my ADHD husband.  However, I was in your same situation and I feel him and I are slowly coming out of it.  Have you tried touching him, holding his hand, giving him a hug?

I have done this and it seems to be working.  He has started to respond to me by giving me hugs.  Holding my hands in the car and in the restaurants.  It can only lead to more if he responds back.

We cuddle now in bed and give each other back rubs.  We were at the point where we weren't touching at all.  Also, try to be positive around him.  My husband can sense when I am not immediately.

This is one of the hardest things I've had to deal with, but I'm changing my way of thinking about it.  I know that part of that is that this ADHD is not in my control, but I can control how I react to it.

Do not let it change who you are!

I hope this makes sense.  I'm new to this stuff.

 

Here goes my best shot...take

Here goes my best shot...take it for what it is worth...

*your anger, although maybe completely legitimate, is just as damaging to the 'intimacy' in your relationship as the things he has done to make you angry. You have every right to your emotions, even anger, but in a healthy relationship you don't react this way. If you have a child who is always into everything, who pushes your buttons, who does the same 'wrong' things over and over again, who doesn't do what they are told, do you react by completely shutting them out of your heart? Who wants to have sex with someone who is shut down, cold, and wants to punch you in the face for just kissing them good morning? He may SEEM clueless, but you even admit that "he knows"...take a look at what you are presenting to him when he wakes up, when he goes to bed, when he's in bed at night...is it someone that says "I welcome your love"? or is it someone who says "If I'm not getting sex then I don't want you to touch me, sleep with me, or kiss me"? Look at how many times over and over you read here that a non-ADHD spouse says "I do not have any interest in having sex with him/her". We don't corner the market on not wanting to have sex because things are bad outside of the bedroom...ADHDers can experience those feelings as well.

*you have a good basis to start with...he sleeps in the same bed with you, he hugs/kisses you when he comes home/gets up in the morning, says loving words. All of these things tell me that he loves you and that the lack of sex is probably purely ADHD related. TRUST ME, it is a very hard pill to swallow but I have read enough on here, and other places, to understand that sex doesn't always fall high on their list of priorities. It is just something else they have to do...and they already stay pretty much over loaded. For you and me, sex helps relieve stress and it is something we look forward to and get excited about. Not always the case with someone who has ADHD. Accepting that is a good place for you to start. Stop taking it personally...it really isn't about you. I know this is in contrast to what I said above...so let me explain. This issue could have MANY contributing factors that make it worse. Which came first..no sex..or your anger? Maybe they both sort of came about at the same time, as a result of untreated ADHD. He may have a genuine issue focusing on and putting whatever energy he has left over at the end of the day into sex. He may also be having issues related to the above paragraph. Maybe a little/a lot of both? Both need consideration. READ. Read everything you can from people with ADHD and how they struggle keeping their sex lives alive. They lose focus. Literally right in the middle of the act they can just lose interest. (for men this renders things inoperable, if you know what I mean...game over). They have a hard time putting forth the effort to get interested. As you can imagine, the first time I read a post from a member here (female, ADD) about how she loved her husband dearly but dreaded sex and felt it was a chore I got sick at my stomach and it literally changed my entire attitude about my marriage for a while. ("I will never be 'exciting' enough for him to give me sex as often as I want it") Also, don't fall into the trap of thinking it is something wrong with you or something personal. It isn't. (in the ADHD aspect anyway).

*the more of an issue you make it, the worse of an issue it becomes. The more you focus on it, the less confident they feel about it, the worse they feel about themselves, the less they are going to feel 'in the mood'. Take the issue completely off of the table.

#1- focus on YOU for a bit. This does not require you shutting him out...I encourage you not to, as a matter of fact. Your anger is contributing to this issue 50%. Accept it, acknowledge it, stop justifying it, and make it your goal to commit yourself to creating an atmosphere that is conducive to love-making.

#2-Take the pressure off completely. It is scary. We feel if we take the pressure off, then we will never get sex. I know. I've been in your shoes...still am somewhat. Sex has become more frequent since I made every effort to make it a non-issue. I stopped talking about it, I stopped asking for it, and hinting about it. It became evident that if he THOUGHT I wanted it, it was not happening...I wish I could tell you why, but I can't. My best guess is that he felt pressured and felt like I was trying to add something else to his 'to do' list and didn't like it. At one point we were having sex less than once a month...sometimes it was once every 2 months. I won't say I 'gave up', but I just gave in. I let him take the lead and for a while we barely had sex at all. I was so confused and felt so bad about everything related to my marriage that I just didn't have anymore energy to devote to worrying about it.

I followed the route you're taking. I stopped making him coffee. I stopped buying him stuff I knew he liked at the grocery store. I stopped going out of my way to do anything nice for him. Essentially what I did was (without knowing it) stop showing him that I loved him. It wasn't who I wanted to be. We still do not have sex as often as I wish we did, I won't lie, but it is better than it was not only in the aspect that it happens more frequently but when it does happen it is amazing. I try and make the most of it, relish it, slow things down, make it last. I put forth all of my efforts into keeping him focused and the rewards are great.