Input from non-ADHD wives, please: doubting wanting to ever be married

Well, about 2 months ago my wife of 2 years left the house; we married when she was 34 and this is my 2nd marriage, her first.  She immediately began therapy to find out why she was so depressed and unhappy and neither of us could understand what was happening in our marriage.  After the first month she was gone, I was diagnosed with ADHD and after reading about it, everything began to make sense to me; I’m now being treated.  As things between us detiorated while she was gone, like the typical ADHD hateful verbal lashings when something caused hurt or anxiety, she became convinced and told me that she never really wanted to get married and that “this” just wasn’t right, because she has never really been happy—even before we met—and now wants a divorce.  Now, there is plenty of evidence to the contrary whether she wanted to get married: childhood “about me” school booklets talking about her ideal husband (which by the way describes me to a T), a bet she had with a family neighbor since a teenager about whether or not she would ever get married (she was given the $100 dollars at our wedding reception), journals, previous relationships where marriage was considered, not to mention all the pictures we have of us together during courtship that just show a very happy and always smiling woman.

Because she is dealing with her own issues, she really hasn’t spent a lot of time reading about the effects of ADHD on marriages.  I have sent her articles and stories that she has read and she has commented that it was as if the authors had been looking through our front door.  But still, she believes that she never really wanted to get married.

My question is, as a non-ADHD wife, did you ever *really* doubt whether you wanted be married as a consequence of the effects of ADHD?  I really want to save my marriage—I love her very much, and am still in love with her, despite not having been well equipped to show it.  But, since there is a path and an answer (in my mind anyway) as to what was wrong and how to solve it, is there anything I can do to convince her to look into the ADHD effects more before continuing on this path?

Non-ADHD wife prospective..,

From my prospective, I always wanted to get married to my ADHD husband and settled down,I love him soo much..he is my world and my joy...when we first got married we never really knew about each other very well,we rushed in to marriage b/c it was so much chemistry between I have come 1 year and 7 months in to this marriage with him,and if it was not for the feelings I have for him I would have left him long time ago..I still can't understand why I am still with him after all he has put me through..I guess I am scared to be alone and that is my fear.

He has a very good way with his work and I thought wow!! great husband material,then he did not want me to have any contact with a male friend of mines for 7 years,then he was jealous at my work then he started to act possessive,I thought well hey I love this man I am going to do the things that would make him comfortable,I stopped all the male contacts and I did what he wanted me to do for him to feel safe within our main issue we had was"trust" and we would always have insecurities.He is a wonderful man underneath the ADHD and b/c of this I don't think that is the main cause of our separation at times..I think that he has major issues besides ADHD,it's really not that alone,after I have read and learn,he has major mood swings and depressions.Losing his house,boat,finances,the lost of his kids"everything"when you add them up makes him who he really is.

I do believe that if he were to go and get treated,take meds,it would help to some level,but then he would have to work on himself..he is not willing to do these things,,he has a lot of bad habits he has to support,marijuana,gambling,porn,alcohol,and at the end of the month he is so overwhelmed,he can't even support me at no point whatsoever.He makes empty promises to me and never keeps them..he would take me on lovely vacations then throw it in my face.

I am not really sure as to why I should stay with him..I think this through a lot and the only thing right now that he is doing for me is helping me a little fix my car and keeping me company and that's it..we don't live like a couple very much..he is in his own apartment and I am at my place..this week I did not work b/c I had some business to take care of so I was planning to spend the week with him and I proceeded,he got flustered my Tuesday telling me that I should have stayed home b/c he got under paid and he was going through some moody behaviors..when in fact that is the time he should really need me..not knowing that he is addicted to porn and I am in his way...he confessed that to me last night and not in the exact words but I read his lines out well...

Every marriage has a different reason for divorce or separation,if I were to leave him I would know exactly why..the sad part is he might not know...we don't have proper communication b/c the matter always ends up in a fight and the real issue got lost..that's the problem here..I hope that I helped you at some point and I would say this last thing before I go..I love him like there is no tomorrow,I want to spend the rest of my life with him,he is a wonderful person besides this ADHD and the other train of problems that follows,but I am not willing to go through that for the rest of my life...

I wish you all the best...hope I helped you in some way...


Only One Thought I Have Here...

I don't want to come off rude or flippant here, I don't know your situation at all.

I will tell you this deep dark thought thought:

Marriage to my husband in its entirety made me completely question this very same issue.

As I've said in other posts, the onset of marriage was a complete 180. It was like waking up and realizing you've married a complete stranger.

I do not know if that's what she experienced, but I've heard my experience time and time again in support groups.

It's completely devastating and foundation rocking to have that happen. It did a number on my self esteem as a woman that I can't even begin to explain.

Yes there have been times,

Yes there have been times, most of them w/in the last yr, in which I felt "trapped" now that I am married to my DH and have a child.  I believe strongly in the marriage commitment and especially having a child, intend to do everything I can to save the family.  However, I many times wondered if this was all that life has to offer me now that the hyperfocus wore off.  However, those feelings for me were fleeting, and often came mostly in the heat of a major argument.  I wish  I had never verbalized them to DH, b/c they set a tone.  Ultimately, I love him more than anything, even w/o the courtship hyperfocus.  I do believe we are supposed to be and even though I've tried very hard recently, I get nauseous at the idea of being w/ anyone else.  But yes, the tendencies of ADHD were so jarring that I did question the entire thing from time to time.  It appears to be very hard for the ADHDer to truly comprehend what it's like to be in the non-ADHDers shoes - to go from being the only thing in the world that matters to not only having no or very little outward signs of affection but combining that with outbursts and no verbal filters.  There were so many times I screamed inside my head - "I exist!!  I am a person, I matter, and I exist!"

As for depression, I have had some depression, anxiety, and insomnia all my life but NEVER did I experience it to the degree I did when the proverbial sheet hit the fan w/ this marriage.  It was right about the time we were getting more serious, married, trying to get pregnant.  

Honestly my advice would be to seek or continue therapy for the ADHD and give her some space while still being kind/friendly and interested in spending time w/ her.  Maybe don't send her articles, but instead show her through your actions that you're serious about getting as strong of a grip on this as possible.  Most of all, get a grip on it b/c that's what's best for you whether it works or not...that'll make it stick, so to speak.

Best of luck~

I'm not sure if I quite

I'm not sure if I quite understand what you are asking. I think you are asking has being married to an ADHD person caused a "policy" change on marriage.

Absolutely not. At least for me. There have been times when I have thought that I would be better off alone, that if my husband (the ADHDer) and I divorced, I wouldn't want to be with anyone else, etc. But never have I thought I was wrong for just getting married. If I could go back, I would have spent more time in counseling dealing with some my hubby's issues that had begun to surface. Even he told me at the time that he thought we should wait to get married, but I thought he was just trying to get out of marrying me (hello! abandonment issues).

The thing that I see on here more often is that people regret marrying their ADHD spouses. It seems that the idea of having a happy marriage is relatively unaffected by some of the experiences spouses have felt.

If you were just asking do we regret marrying an ADHDer... I think a lot of us either feel that way now or did at some point in the past. I did, but as my marriage has improved, I no longer do. I have found, however, that I absolutely cannot compare my marriage to other people's marriages. If I did, I would be perpetually unhappy.

It sounds like your spouse is in denial; I went through an intense period of depression after we got married and I discovered that we had serious issues. I sincerely questioned my ability to judge people as the "bad" kept coming out of my hubby. Your spouse definitely needs to seek some counseling on her own and I would recommend that you seek it together as a couple. My hubby and I have been in counseling for eight months and the change has been extraordinary.

Good luck!