Intense sadness tonight

Hi all, am using this forum to try to get rid of my sadness tonight. Not really looking for a great epiphany because... Well just because. I avoid saying to much details about my personal life here because it is so public but those who have read my posts know Ive had some rough times w my spouse. And yet we have kept together and are still married- tho separated for several months. He says he is still in the relationship but what he says and does sometimes seem like two very different things. I am alone A LOT w the kids and the anxiety and loneliness are brutal. I suffer from depression- did someone call it situational (meaning my life feels so stinky often that I am depressed)? I have stated my boundaries, Ive looked for alternative places of support, I keep busy.... But as I have interactions w my spouse he keeps bringing my hopes up that he will be here in my life again only to disappear at work for days (w the occasional phone or text).. But its not enough. I miss having a relationship that involves two people!! I feel so stupid and dejected, the quintessential desperate housewife- lonely and pathetic sometimes that it gets OPPRESSIVE. I will get over it and my little pity party is getting old/ but I do want to share that at this moment my spouse probably has no clue at how much I am hurting after he just hung up on me ("im not listening to this..") and refuses to answer his phone. Shut down and shut out. And yeah, those will say he is adhd overwhelmed- leave him alone... But I AM SO LONELY. It is so hard as I need to be the strong one for the kids (though they are getting used to hear me cry in theother room). I try to pull myself up and be there for them. It is so hard for them too, I know. In any case, I keep fighting to keep on. To find my own self esteem, to deal w this guy who has not only adhd issues but clearly others- yet says he loves me- we've been together almost 30 years! So tonight I and the kids are alone again and yet I have to keep trying to hold it together...crap its so hard folks. So when you discuss how hard it is to deal w the adhd symptoms and how the non-adhd partners can not know the pain and low self esteem-- understand- in many cases we feel the pain too. Oh God, so much it hurts.

Ugh, not getting any better.

Ugh, not getting any better. What do you all do to get past this overwhelming acidwashing loneliness and despair...or is it just me?!!!

When you're going through hell, keep going...

I think the main thing that seems to keep you "stuck" in this perpetual state of sadness is that you're waiting on him to bring you some happiness. You're banking on him coming back into your life before you'll be happy. Again.

Lady...let me tell you, first..I can sympathize with your situation in many ways. In 2009 my husband and I were separated for 3 months after he started behaving horribly (ADHD was out of control and undiagnosed at the time) and I asked him to leave. While we were separated my Daddy had an ATV accident, was in the hospital for a month..was doing great...and then suddenly got sepsis and died. I needed him more than I ever had. He was pretty much completely unavailable to me emotionally. It was the loneliest I had ever felt.

Now, I'm dealing with the same kind of loneliness only he's still here...but sleeping in the den. Not sure if it was the abrupt stop to meds, him just simply imploding emotionally, or him visiting the dark side of ADHD...or all 3, but my marriage went from him proposing to me and asking me to renew our vows, to him starting meds and  becoming  hostile and explosive, to him stopping them and completely withdrawing from the marriage and family. I can honestly say that I am very familiar with the feeling of loneliness. As a matter of fact, I had a good cry after I got the kids in the bed right before I came. I've asked him to please stop sleeping in the den. He says he wants to. But...

I have been coming here for months...trying to help, giving advice that I am now having to give myself. My prayer, for a while now, has been that the Lord just not let him cheat on me again and I would stay with him through anything. I had no idea I would put to the test on that. I never ever dreamed I would be going through this again. Not in my wildest dreams. I, TOO, miss having a relationship that involves two people.

Here is my experience and my advice...first, accept that where you are, right now...right this very minute...is where God wants you to be. Something good is going to come of all of this, just be patient. You have to be responsible for your life and he has to be responsible for his. I have told him how I feel about what is happening. I have told him that I am very unhappy. I have told him that him not sleeping in the marital bed is a deal breaker for me..spend far too many years of my life married to him sleeping alone, and I'm not doing it anymore, damnit. I'm being patient...for now. Yes, he has ADHd. yes, it is untreated right now. Yes, he is unraveling and needs my support. I'm giving it, but not at my own expense anymore.

If you hear nothing else I say...please listen to this....I am not telling you to leave him alone because he is ADHD overwhelmed and I'm concerned for his feelings. I am telling you to leave him alone because he is ADHD overwhelmed and ALL EFFORTS ON YOUR PART TO MAKE THINGS RIGHT, DISCUSS YOUR FEELINGS, EXPRESS YOUR LONELINESS, AND FIX THE SITUATION WILL ONLY MAKE HIM WORSE. You are, by calling after he hangs up and giving him the notion that you're 'desperate', basically going to prolong this BS forever. It SUCKS!! I HATE IT!! but it is true...the more we focus on them and their meltdown and all of the unraveling and BS that comes with it, the worse we make it. I don't know about you lady, but I am sick and tired of being drug around by the hair by my husbands ADHD. Even though he's kind and caring most of the time, it still effects me in ways that he isn't even willing to admit or see...but I will not stop trying until he does. For now, since he chooses the life of a hermit, I choose to LIVE MY DAMNED LIFE AND STOP SPENDING MY EVERY WAKING MINUTE OBSESSING OVER HIS ADHD. I am SOOOO done doing this.

CoDependent No More has been by my side, playing in the room with me (audiobook version) for days. I'm taking notes, I'm writing down so many good quotes and things that are SOOOOOO true to my situation that are things I KNOW I need to 'GET' in order to beat this damned co-dependency thing and start living my f'in life again!! If you don't have it, get it. GET OUT FROM UNDER this cloud you're living under lady...regardless of whether he comes home or not, you cannot be this DEPENDENT on him for your happiness or your marriage will NEVER work. You have to be strong or he never will. TRULY look at this from the viewpoint that any sign of weakness you show him will make him take a step backwards. As I said.it SUCKS and it's cruel, but for now you need to see this situation through his eyes and understand how your reactions are making it worse. Do it, though, for YOU more than for him...or as an attempt to win him back...do it because it is SOOO UNHEALTHY for you to be so wrapped up in him and his ADHD.

I had this epiphany (after a very, very hard and emotionally draining month or more) this past week..after a very intense small group meeting (bible study) and have taken a completely different viewpoint of the situation. For me, I am a Christian, I realized that this is FAR more than I can do on my own and far more than I care to try to do on my own anymore. I'm handing it over to God and letting him. "Let go, let God" is the AlAnon Motto spoken of so frequently in the CoDependent No More book...and it really hit home after my meeting this week. Also, I realized that by trying to rush this situation at my own pace and trying to brainstorm and figure up ways to fix it, I was doing exactly what I hate most about my husband's ADHD, I was taking away from him the responsibility to fix it himself. I told him it was up to him, 100%, to fix this and make it right. I told him that I was putting all of my faith in him that he'll work on himself and come up with the solutions to do what it takes to restore his emotional health, his marriage, and his family...and I meant it. It is ON HIM. I am here, I will listen, I told him I wouldn't abandon him and I let him know everyday, several times, how much I love him....but this is HIS deal and he has to make it right for us all. I will wait patiently...praying...crying...and having all the faith in the world that God is in control.

Life is too short...life is far too short to spend it having nights like this where you just simply can't breathe without him...please, detach from his ADHD and get your life back. With or without him, you will be OK. ((((HUGS))))

please , both of you

I keep saying this but nobody hears me. ADHD is a very old physical type. the reason we seem to not pay attention is because we are actually paying too much attention. That we are wired like this most probably has to do with roles in ancient societies. Likely, there were ADHD type people who, while the community went about daily life, watched in the distance for threats. It is also likely the reason why we think outside the box. These ancient "guards" needed to strategize on the spot to save the tribe, so to speak. That is also another reason that our fight or flight spring is more tightly wound than other people. The issue now is that life has changed but our brain type persists.

Why am I saying this? Because the ADHD brain is meant to function in a certain way(one does not fit with our current lifestyles) everything about it is meant to work at least 10 times better with very large amounts of exercise. If your ADHD partner does not want meds, show them the documented evidence of the benefits of exercise. We dont need 15 minutes 3 times a week, we were meant to do physical activity almost constantly ie patrolling... running to warn people etc. An ADHDer without exercise is a sad ADHDer, for the most part.

First, look at the links I am sending you. Second, find a way to exercise together, or apart. You will notice the change almost immediately. More oxygen to the brain, more endorphins, better chemical balance etc less aggression. I know this for certain, i have seen it and experienced it. And if I can find a way to get exercise with chronic pain hyper mobility, chronic repetitive strain injuries and a 3/4 inch difference between the height of left and right SI joints, then almost anyone can find a way.

http://www.johnratey.com/newsite/index.html

http://www.johnratey.com/newsite/Resources.html

http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/3142.html

http://www.ehow.com/video_4400865_exercise-adhd.html

there are many more. I can post on this anytime.

I DO hear you and thanks for

I DO hear you and thanks for the links. In fact i have encouraged the very same things and more (check some of my previous posts). But heres the thing: the person who has adhd must be WILLING to participate in these discussions. And unlike you, who have prospered by first taking ownership of the effects this might be having on you (wont talk about the positives, though i know they r there), many people w adhd cant bear to do this. And it must be theIr decision- i cant do anything to change that nor should I. As independent people, it has to be their decision where they go with this diagnosis.

I have heard other non ADHD spouses

Talk about deal breakers and ultimatums. Like I said in a different post to Sherri, your partners really have to "poop or get off the pot". Enough time has wasted already by the sounds of it and take it from me, its not a capacity issue. If your partner is not willing to change in any way and keeps asking for more time and space, you will not see change, ever. My husband and I have been through hell and back, and even while I understood our mutual condition better than anyone else, I did threaten to leave, on several occasions. It must have done some good because when he goes to bed at night, he repeats(privately) I will not yell at my wife, it is disrespectful and she doesn't deserve it. Yes, like you ladies I have been through hell, but because of the ADHD, I likely have better coping mechanisms. It has been a life long journey. ADHD is not an excuse for emotional or physical abuse, especially once you know you have it.

Exercise makes a HUGE Difference.

I am close to two years post ADD Diagnosis. I have posted many times about my walking regiment and the weight I have lost and the addiction to food is GONE. I have recently gone through a hip/lower back injury and my walking routine was pretty much stalled for the last 3 weeks. I walked last week for the first time in a week at my usual 5am for my usual 2 miles and let me tell you how good I felt the whole rest of the day. ADD is a life sucking monster and the Adderal Really helps, but adding my 4 miles a day to that really completes the calm "Confident" personsality I like to have. SherriW... Why doesn't your husband want to come to bed? As an ADDer the only reason I wouldn't come to bed at a reasonable time would be if I thought I would get a barage of questions or worse an arguement. Late at night the Adderall is gone the brain is getting foggy, so it is a bad time for me to say the right things. I have never stayed all night on the couch... We have slept together comepletely angry with one another, which sucks because then my brain is racing and there won't be much sleep anyway. The physical contact in bed, and I'm not talking about the obvious ;-), is what I crave the most. Just her hand on my back or chest or locking our feet is very important to me, otherwise there is a disconnect that leads to depression and bad thoughts. We all have to fix ourselves, we all have issues and imperfections and it sounds to me like you just need to see any effort that he is trying to resolve some of his issues. Do you like to walk? Ask your husband to take a walk with you on a pretty day. Don't try to solve anything, just enjoy the walk. Maybe your husband will feel a little of what I am talking about and want to go again? You give good advice Sherri, I hope to return the favor every now and again. YYZ

Thanks XYZ

It is much easier to make a major point when there is support and examples. Our brains are really different, its hard to make anybody understand that when they cant hear it. When I was 34, I got on a road bike and cycled 290 miles in 11.5 hours. I have never felt a peace and serenity like that. My brain turned off for a little while. G-d, it was fantastic.

Simora (Lance A)

Damn... I've had cycling phases in my life, typically rides 3 - 5 times a week 15 - 30 or so miles making a descent 15mph clip, but 290 miles in 11.5 that is quite amazing! You have indeed experienced "The Zone of Hyper-Focus" Welcome to the Show :-)

that was kilometers,

Sorry for the misunderstanding, I remembered to convert the word but not the distance. Cruising speed was 27kph average. It was over 2 days and it was mostly flat prairies. It comes out to 180 miles. I can see why you would be astounded. At that time though my commute was 50k every day plus 2-300k per week recreational, and yes, hyper focus was present. main ride was carbon fibre allez, with very skinny tires. Drove the hybrid on highway though.

Still impressed :)

I've got a Trek Hybrid and I love it. I can't take a road bike because my back prefers to be more upright. I stick to the paved trails when I go. I may have to break out the Trek with all this talk of riding. The last time I was in a riding routine was before my ADD diagnosis and I was almost a hundred pounds heavier. I bet the bike will appreciate it :) YYZ

trek was my hybrid too

and is right now if we could get rid of this blasted snow. Ladies bikes are made with shorter top tube, more compact geometry. Don't laugh.

Laugh :D

Well... No snow here, but a tornado warning is about to end, so I might have to look outside and make sure I'm still in Texas :) RE: different geometry for the womans hybrid top tube. That geometry can be a problem sometimes :)

At a point in our not to

At a point in our not to distant past, he too seemed to crave the physical touch and cuddling. He told me once that just having me lay with him and put my head on his chest brought him so much peace. I have no idea why he has made up his mind that the only way to 'get through' this is to hide out in the den. Sickens me to admit it, he hasn't wanted to give up SEX, he's fine to do THAT and 'get through it', but he can't bring himself, for some reason, to come to bed with me. I do not ask questions, I do not try to fix him, I do not expect or WANT a conversation with him at 10:00 at night..as a matter of fact, I am usually asleep when my head hits the pillow (or his chest). I have no clue. None.

I do see efforts, and I do see him improving. He's come a very long way just in the last 2 weeks. I'm being patient. I love him and I accept him 'as he is', even though things like this make no sense to me and feel, 100%, like a choice. (not to sleep in bed with me).

Simora, I have clear boundaries (which he is constantly trying to test me on) and I have given the ultimate ultimatum...we'll either be happy together, or we won't be together. I am not taking this lying down. I know he is capable of processing what he's doing and what is going on. There is more to the story which I won't share publicly, but that is a key reason I am giving him space I am although it goes against one of my 'deal breakers' in this marriage. When I gave him a clean slate to come home, after we hit rock bottom and were separated, I meant it...but I also meant that he had to get help (didn't even know about ADHD at the time, just knew something was wrong) and I also meant that I am not living this 'I can't help myself' kind of life anymore. He can help himself. He can acknowledge that although it feels "OK" to him to be unraveling 10 times a day, it isn't OK with me.

For now I am working on ME and letting him sort it all out. I can't put a time on it, I am just praying about it and letting God be my guide. He cannot exercise right now, he is 6'4" and typically only weighs about 145-150...he probably doesn't weigh 120 now, if that. He is trying to drink weight gain shakes and stuff to help rebuild his physical self and strength. I do think this is one of his problems though, he is very inactive most of the time. His job is demanding mentally, sometimes physically, but I don't think it is enough.

wow

I am 5'9 and 140 and my daughters friends say I'm skinny. I think I am healthy. My hubby is 6' and 175 to 180. I am not going to pry, lets just say I take very small doses of methotrexate for my auto immune condition so I suspect that you guys do indeed have some issues that are even more serious than ADHD. With the weight amounts you mention I am convinced that the doc may not have gone slow enough on initial meds.  My son is 105lbs and takes a 20mg of vyvanse with his straterra and it works very well. If he has to take as much health stuff, like supplements and non ADHD meds as I do, I can understand reluctance to take meds. I deal with ongoing nausea and I have to basically force feed myself to remain strong physically and to model correct eating for a teen girl.

I know our health situation is much simpler in Canada. Our basic healthcare is covered but we also have an excellent supplemental coverage. I see a naturopath and a massage therapist when I can. A reputable practitioner may be of some help with both ADHD and other health issues. You don't mention if he is happy in his job because it sounds like the demanding nature of it may effect your situation. Unhappiness and depression severely compromise health. My health issues are almost all due to stress. Last week I happened upon research on mindfulness training. I watched a bunch of you tubes and saw it as promising. There are many books and cds and in the grand scheme of things, very cheap if the practice helps to alleviate stress. Because I can't manage to get much food down, I am really careful to eat only quality foods and make sure I get anti-occidents.

 I hope that you guys get to a point soon where you can do things like walk around the block together after supper or something along those lines. Even small steps like that can make a difference. When I finally understood there might be additional health related issues, it only added to my positive perception of your stoicism, patience, generosity and  wisdom. I add my wishes for you to those of others, that you may soon find yourself in a good place.

He has a love/hate

He has a love/hate relationship with his job...he loves what he does, hates the politics of working for local government. He doesn't have thick skin and he takes everything personally...he's miserable and lets everything job related spill over into our lives, so YES, that is a huge issue that I've nothing short of BEGGED him to work with our counselor on. I have never known him to be "happy" with any job he has ever had, to be honest.

I am beginning to feel 100% that he was just simply on too much medication...period. The 'other things' I mentioned, probably played a role too. Again, leaving the treatment decisions up to him at this point...he is going to counseling alone for a while, and I have made it clear I am counting on him to work through this on his own. Not without my support, just without me taking over and taking charge. I am not unhappy with his progress, I am very proud of how he's doing and I have told him so.

He is my best friend and I love him unconditionally. I just miss him. I miss 'me' too..gotta get back to that, somehow. This has been a reality check. I thought I had a better grip on things than I actually did, the Lord is definitely trying to teach me something here.

well to tell you the truth

Being in a regimented job with an inflexible schedule can feel a lot like being a caged animal to many ADHDs. It's a reason for many that we don't stick to a long term position. I have never held a job for over 3 years( bit of a dead give away there) but I have never been fired either. The feelings of claustrophobia just become oppressive and I bolt.  We want men to be "providers" so the pressure to conform and make a respectable salary at a full time position must be stiffling, not conducive to happiness. Many people with ADHD are better at the contracting or entrepreneurial role. Could explain the "never really happy"

Inflexible job...

You are preaching to the choir Simora... My employment record was not strong in my life, BC... (Before Wife ;) I was doing good if I was at a job for a year. The year we got married I started a job, shockingly where my wife also worked, and I was there for over 12 years and only left because of a great opportunity with a new company. You are right about inflexible positions where people stand over you, as I would run away for sure. I finally found myself a position which challenges me, software developer/support, I solve puzzles all day and create things that make the user's job easier. Very rewarding to an ADDer like me. I would be sick in a commission, contract work or self employed because the stress of not knowing I have a set salary would drive me crazier... My wife and I have always made around the same salaries and split home duties and child duty in a varying scale of equal. I NEED Structure or I wonder and eventually fail...

YYZ

  

thats the thing

Its not productivity or laziness either. Its about a good fit. My husband is like you, on his own, when he was an independent massage therapist, he was wallowing in dept. Not having admin skills or set schedule was disastrous. And although an aptitude test demonstrated capacity for grad level mathematics he just could not do uni. He became an oil rig worker and we worked as a team to finally establish him in an engineering position which provided on the job training. He works as a contractor but for a company. He has the best possible fit for him, guaranteed salary, full benefits and job bonuses. Every job is different as is every set of conditions and every crew he works with. he can be asked to work all over the world. For myself, I tend to alternate between hyperfocus and flitting so 9 to 5 is very oppressive to me. Also have problems with task switching. As well, I ave perfectionism issues(bit of OCD there) and likely due to processing challenges, I am an dogged researcher (also tend to originate hypotheses which creates difficulty in substantiating) so I often don't make efficient use of time.

You and your work history

You and your work history sound a lot like my husband. He never found his 'thing' until a few years before we met, but he was simply managing local computer companies and he hated it. He got an opportunity to work from home making almost 4 times what he was making locally and I encouraged him to take the chance and he thanks me for it to this day. He did that for 9 years...until the economy crashed. Although his work is patented (in his name in addition to 2 others), we were at square one. He struggled HARD with the lack of structure and would wait until the last minute and then spend 3 days straight, with very little sleep, doing 3 months worth of work. (programming).

He is head of the IT dept for our city and does a little of everything...including programming..which he claims he hates one minute, and finds rewarding the next. Who knows? He is self-taught, for appx 20 years now, and there is NOTHING he cannot do or doesn't know how to do.

I fully believe he needs to structure too, although he might disagree.

He has always been very tall

He has always been very tall and very thin...the recent weight loss was due, in part, to the ADHD medications. He wasn't made to go back (after Dec) until April...4 months was too long between visits and it just snowballed. He is really getting his appetite back and hopefully will start putting back on his weight. It isn't that he doesn't eat, but he wasn't eating while on the ADHD meds, that's for sure.

120 lbs?!?

Could there be something else wrong? I cannot even imagine a guy that is 6'-4" weighing 120 lbs?!? My wife says I'm way to skinny at 5'-11" and 188 lbs. I always thought the BMI index was a load of Doo-Doo, because it does not take into account the physical structure of an individual. According to BMI, I will not be into the "Normal" range unless I drop below 178 lbs. I get a full physical every year and have since I was 35. I know 90% of us guys do not do this, but better safe than sorry IMO. Keep working on yourself SherriW, you seem to communicate Very well and don't seem like one who attacks verbally and you Obviously care, so the ball is in his court.

Send him to Texas I know plenty of places where you can pack on some pounds :-) JK... I don't want to make light of the situation ;)

I have always said, "If you lose your sense of humor, you are Really in trouble"...

YYZ

I suspect

that it is a physical type. though a 20lb loss on somebody that is that slim would be alarming.

A few years back he brushed

A few years back he brushed over the idea of being ADHD with another doctor he saw. They put him on Concerta to 'give it a go' and see if it helped. The way I remembered the story was he stopped taking it after less than a month on it because it made him very irritable (just the same as when he tried it again in Oct 2010). He told me, months ago, that he went off of it because the doctor refused to refill it for him because he lost 10 lbs the first month he took it. I guess he 'told' me he stopped it because it made him grouchy years ago...but it wasn't, apparenlty, the truth.

He told me this before starting the meds last Oct, I really wish his doctor had kept a better eye on him. He has just always been very thin, underweight actually...but this is too much. Again, his appetite is back and he's feeling stronger everyday. He's drinking the calorie shakes along with his food so hopefully he'll get back to his normal weight.

YYZ, I agree...and his sense of humor is something I have missed the most. He actually laughed Friday..for the first time in months.

Concerta did not do it for me

I tried it for several months and found that it made me a bit aggressive and irritable. I wanted to get away from the peak and valley thing on Dexedrine. just as we were deciding to go back to the Dex, Vyvanse became available here. My kids' doc's assistant (psych nurse) had been involved in clinical trials and had a good experience with it. I was pumped about the more adult friendly 12 to 14 hour day. Full time mom and full time student making commission artwork and volunteering, I could not afford to peter out at 5pm. As I had good results with Dex, the Vyvanse was a good fit. Getting to dosage was excruciating, 2O mg to start and 10 mg increase with doc visit 1 x each month. Everyone is different and i really like v. It is slow and steady, very even and regular. It also did not effect appetite like dex did although after about 4 months that had worn off as well. BTW, now I am dosage stable, I see doc every 3 months. This doc though only does adult ADHD.

Daily Strategy...

I had good results immediately from Dex and liked the non-XR version because I could plan to doses based on the day as it develops. The 3rd dose I might take a little later, take a Full or 1/2 dose or maybe not at all. Then aboat two months ago, I had the pharmacy give me Name Brand Adderall and I think it is a lot smoother than the Dex. I hear you about needing to keep going after 5pm... Why should my job benefit and my family not see the same :) I'm sure I don't work as hard as it sounds like you do. The Dex did affect my appetite for the first couple of months, but I don't think it really did afterwards. Not to Hijack this thread, but I am going to save your note about the appetite affect wearing off after 4 months. The biggest recurring argument in our house is over my weight loss and I don't think about food all the time and when I'm hungry I eat, when I'm full I stop. I was never addicted to anything other than food before the ADD diagnosis. My wife says it's because I'm on "Speed" and that I'm lucky to have a disorder where the main prescription has the "Golden Egg" of side affects... I rarely change my dosage too (20mg first thing, 20mg late morning, 10mg at 3pm) and I'm on a 6 month visit with my doc at this point.

YYZ

EXACTLY!!!!

When I try to explain the chemicals that are low in the ADD brain are being raised to NORMAL levels, she only sees me rationalizing my way out of being wrong, yet again... I have told her that I have articles printed showing the relationship between ADD and obesity. She really does not want to hear it again from me, yet she will not read anything about ADD, even though I've told her about all the experiences shared on this site. I've told her that I have learned so much from the NonADDer perspective from people like SherriW and others and she might find that her feelings/experiences are like many others. The "Speed" weight loss conversations pretty much stopped with the last blow-up a few months ago. I said we need couples therapy because this was far to destructive, she did not think we needed it and would just agree to disagree on the subject... I do love my wife, but it does hurt that she doesn't really believe ADD is playing much of a role in our lives.

I will copy your post too :-)

Thanks for the reply

YYZ  

Its the reason why some of drink coffee

before we find out. Pots and pots of it. I started sleeping much more regularly when I started meds. Sedatives don't really work for me and I don't get drowsy from antihistamines.

I still love coffee

But I actually drink less coffee now. I had major sleep issues before Adderall. I was sleepy in the afternoon, like after 2 pm and driving home at 5 or 6 o'clock, when I could not sleep. After the evening parent routine around 9 pm, I was WIDE Awake. What a curse... I still can be wide awake later in the evening, but I require way less sleep than the old days. If I get 5 or 6 hours I'm pretty much good to go. 

I can completely attest to

I can completely attest to that...even if it does suppress the appetite, they made my husband a complete zombie and had far less energy on it than before taking it. Speeding up an ADHD brain is simply bringing it up to 'normal' speed. Your wife really does need to learn more.

And please, call me Sherri.

Sherri...

It seems that your husband reacted quite the opposite of my reaction. Before meds did your husband get real busy late in the day, like when he should be sleepy? I, unfortunately am 90% sure my youngest daughter has ADHD. She is only 9, but her entire life after around 7pm she gets more hyper, like to keep herself awake. I was never hyper, which is why I probably went undiagnosed for so long.

You know what, Sherri? Maybe I have what most of the Improving ADDer's are looking for... My wife really discounts the affects of ADD on our marriage. If my wife reads more about ADD, she discovers more things to be mad about. She tells me she liked the old me, most of the time. Just a thought that popped up in my head, because I cannot think of a reason why she would Not want to understand it.  

YYZ

That makes perfect sense.

That makes perfect sense. Maybe her approach is a smart one...to just deal with YOU on an individual basis versus dealing with ADHD as a whole. I say this because this site has been a WONDERFUL outlet for me...not only to get things off of my chest and have a sympathetic ear, but to give advice and lend a hand when I can. The only negative thing about it has been that I tend to project other people's spouses issues onto my husband even if I have no good reason. I have never suspected or had any reason to think he was addicted to porn. For a while I was paranoid (since it seems SO common...or maybe that's another paranoia I have) that i was somehow going to mysteriously find out, after everything else, that he was addicted to porn. LOL Been married for almost 14 years, no reason at all to believe it is a problem, never seen any signs of it, but I got a seed of doubt planted in my mind because of his lack of sex drive and how that tends to go hand in hand (no pun intended) with ADHDers who are addicted to porn. It is hard to separated my own individual husband from all of the rest of the ADHDers here...but I've finally managed it. Maybe your wife is the smart one. Ignorance is bliss? LOL

Ignorance is Bliss (ADDers Creed ;-)

Sherri... You mention the seeds of doubt... VERY interesting... My wife is a fairly insecure woman and is generally preparing for her minds "Inevitabilities". I've lost weight, so she says and does tell me "You CAN'T be attacted to me". It does not matter how many times I tell her before hand, just get dismissed, I ask her to stop being so critical of herself constantly over this and many of self criticizing topics. I believe she has it in her head that I'm going to move on at some point, because I'm "Fixed" and "Skinny". I'm hardly Fixed and Not Skinny. (5'-11" at 188 lbs) I've maintained this weight for over 6 months, so it's not like I'm starving myself. So... Insecurity, low self esteem, crazy busy life does not help at night, which in turn bolster her belief that I will leave. Can you say Vicious Cycle? I can't tell her that I'm not like most of the ADDer guys we read about on this site, because I've always myself better/smarter/faster at whatever I told her about, really to be funny/sarcastic, but alas, always taken as cocky and never wrong...

If she read posts here it might be a wash... She would see that I'm trying to better myself, but also have seeds O doubt planted in my weed garden.

I think I'll keep working on this myself, until she wants to know more.

there are other ways

for her to learn about ADHD and if she is suggestible this site may not be ideal for her. It sounds like she has her own issues yyz. Being upset at your weight loss rather than happy for you and proud of your accomplishments is problematic. A response to Sherri, earlier details my thoughts regarding how ADHD people need emotionally healthy partners. You may want to think about that.

Other ways...

Nail On Head... "A response to Sherri, earlier details my thoughts regarding how ADHD people need emotionally healthy partners." I was Always a flawed, but otherwise mentally healthy partner, like her Rock. Some of the anger is A: There is something wrong with me and someone else to Tip-Toe around. B: My condition has a Magic Pill that fixes me, side effects include "Skinny" C: (B:) is totally unfair... she has struggled and continues to, her meds: Side Effects: Weight Gain & Loss of Sex Drive

She tells me that I cannot relate the her anymore, we used to emotionally eat together. Now we cannot go to lunch without her watching how much I eat and beats herself up over how much she did eat. She is eating better and less, and always ate better and less than me. She has told me a million time that her fear is to be with someone who weighs less than her... I now weight about 5 pounds more... Ugggggggg...

YYZ

your healthier weight

should not be contingent on her degree of comfort with it. You have enough on your plate dealing with ADHD issues and it seems like you are doing well. It seems almost like she is scared of loosing your interdependence. Focus on being well and being a good partner/parent. If she has issues with the work you are doing on yourself she has to deal with that, you can only offer her honesty and love. Don't self sabotage what ever you do as tempting as that may seem. You can not validate her weight issues because that may well suck you into negativity. Also, I don't know her but it is always better to secure your meds when living with somebody with a body dysmorphic perspective. If she is following a healthy lifestyle, weight is not really an issue.

Weight...

The ADD issues do not count, because I don't think she sees me working though anything. I have always supported any program, health club, diet doctor, books, weight watchers and not said anything about costs. My weight loss began a stress diet. I had lost 40 lbs before the ADD diagnosis, a fact that gets forgotten. The other thing she has to deal with is we worked together for 12 years, I left 3 1/2 years ago, and when old co-workers see us at a company event my weight gets brought up... The last time many of them had seen me I was at least 90 lbs heavier. She is an executive at her workplace who projects confidence and the healthiest of marriages, so she gets comments from the other exec's, like "He's lost a lot of weight... Must have a girlfriend" Geeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeez... Thanks... I just wish she would go see her therapist. She did for years when she had to work through issues with other family issues... My medicine is not an issue. She, like me, only has one vice and it's food. Thanks for the post....

Concerta gave him 'spurts'

Concerta gave him 'spurts' throughout the day that made him feel HORRIBLE. He stopped it in Dec and started Vyvanse. Started out on 30mgs and went to 40mgs within a couple of weeks or so. At first it was OK, but eventually he became a very short fused person and very hostile and hard to be in the same room with. Communication SHUT DOWN 100%...you never knew what would set him off. In addition, I have honestly never gotten a straight answer from him as to whether or not he felt it helped him at work. All I could see it doing was making him more prone to argue with people at work too. :-/ He would 'crash' on both meds around 5-6 p.m.

a few weeks

is still fast. Sounds like he has a very high metabolism so his body takes up the med more intensely. It is possible that spreading out the dosage like XYZ, in smaller quantities, would be a better stategy.

I agree, if you're saying

I agree, if you're saying that they didn't spread the meds out thin enough. I think starting at 20mgs and STAYING at 20mgs would be much more appropriate for him. I have read SO much about how the dosage being too high causes irritability..but I think he's very afraid to try anything else. I can't say I blame him.

Sherri, Right back at you-

Sherri, Right back at you- <>. I have been going to God a lot, asking for strength and guidance. Not something I had done a whole lot before. And I have read most of Codependent- yes it is eye opening- Ill open it again after I post this. The darn thing that even tho I/we may have exhibited codependent behavior- that argument only goes so far. There are inherent expectations that we all have when we go into a committed relationship...and thats not codependent, its healthy (and this same book discusses that). We have a right, gosh darn it, to expect that our partners care about what we feel and when we are sad. That they help raise our beloved children and share in the family unit. Or choose to move on should those things do not match up within the couple relationship. But, you are so right Sherri- and i wish i read this a little earlier,lol, I made it worse by exposing such naked vulnerability to him. And worse, I feel lke an idiot. I thank you so much for your words. I come here to find a support system and hoped that I help others go through this when I feel strength. And I draw my own from here when I need it. I dont know what the answer is, but I am trying to be together for the sake of my kids and me. And while if I was truly alone versus the one day he's here next day not routine might be easier on one level, I feel committed to this man. His exaggerated behavior is really different from how I had known him before (tho there have admittedly always been issues). I am committed to my marriage and have said to him that this is not something i take lightly. But I doooo need to take myself out of the expexting hom to bring ke happiness mode- that truth hurt, for sure- because of how true it is, you know? Thanks Sherri, I wish I could help you on your pain too. Just know if you need to talk, Im here too ;) -- as long as you dont mind my occasional "moments of weakness" like I felt tonight. It is so hard, no matter how we slice it but I am at least trying to become my own strength...(while i keep readIng your post over again a few more times)...Thank you.

Its amazing how my original

Its amazing how my original post has taken twists and turns - very.. Dare I say it- adhd like?! Point in fact- after having been mia for 15 h without contact and about three DAYS since we've seen him and me a wreck, he is coming by... W not a big clue as to why I am upset. He gets it he says, but not really?! So i am thinking, do I stuff my feelings of rejection wy down deep so I dont start yet another round of he said she said or just shut my mouth and forget (try) how i feel... Trying to move out of a codependent role- worry about myself... Yadda yadda! I am so emotionally drained i can barely spell my name.

I don't think it is as much

I don't think it is as much about stuffing your feelings as it is about just understanding a couple of things about them...

First, he isn't in a position to be able to do anything about your feelings, he's too caught up in his own crap. Yeah, that hurts...had someone tell me the same thing recently about my husband...it stings, but it really does make a difference when you realize this and stop trying to get from them what they aren't able to offer...for now. For now, present a strong front, be brave, put a smile on your face as if to say "I'm getting healthy for me!" and listen to what he might have to say. The one thing I do what to stress more than anything else...(Yes another one of my PLEASE GET THIS points)...you have to stop falling into the rabbit hole with him. The sooner you stop the big blow outs and emotional dumping that leads only to everyone feeling worse, the better off you'll all be. So many times there are things I want to say, even FEEL desperate to say them to him, but I know if I 'go there' it will start down that road (fortunately he is as dedicated to 'not going there' as I am) and I keep it to myself and realize later that it really wasn't all that important, it was either my pride dying to be 'right' or my desperation dying to 'fix' everything right here, right now.

Second, and this is a hard one...you have to own up to your part in your feelings. I have never felt so alone, abandoned, betrayed, and just flat out depressed about my marriage as I have recently. It was hard enough before, but then to finally reach that point where the connection and the passion and the friendship has all been restored only to have it ripped out from under me YET AGAIN, it's devastating. However...I have to own my part in that. He is a human being who is a very giving and loving and caring soul. He loves his family more than anything else. But he has ADHD. I lost focus, for so long, of the human being and focused only on the ADHD. That is why I could not accept his recent withdraw from me and be patient and trust in God that it would be OK. I had to accept that my unhealthy attachment to him was 90% of my problem. It was causing my misery..not his behavior. Once I realized that the enemy isn't my husband...it is his ADHD (and on a more spiritual level I feel we are being attacked by the devil - spirtual warfare)...and suddenly, as if the sky opened up and the fog lifted I finally got it...it isn't about me. It isn't about how he feels about me. It is about ME needing to get healthy emotionally and letting him do the same for himself.

You have to get healthy emotionally lady, or you'll never find happiness with him. I know seems insurmountable at this time, but it will give your marriage the best fighting chance in the world if you can find your own strength and let him draw from that vs. you needing and needing and him never meeting your needs. Ironically, how it works out in the end is that the stronger you are, the stronger they are, and the more of your needs are met in the end. It requires giving up some of those things for the time being though, and that's tough...if not torture. ((((HUGS))))

Put aside the past...even the recent past..the other night. There is nothing that really needs to be resolved..or can be resolved right now...so just take some deep breaths, focus on becoming stronger for you, and see what he has to say.

Hard to accept

It's very hard to accept that we as "the nons" have to get stronger to "make things better". We are already worn out, tired, depressed, sad and emotionally bankrupt, and yet we have to get strong again "on our own". I take it, we can't expect to have our spouse  help give us some encouragement along the way. It is so unfair.

We have to be there for our adhd spouses when they need us, but from what I'm reading here, we can't expect ANYTHING from them. We have to go it alone, and we can't even expect them to NOTICE. Encouragement is needed for ANYONE to get better, especially when they've been beaten down to nothing. (I know that I need some)

We went to counseling for almost two years, but had to stop due to the cost. It's just terribly frustrating. I want to be able to write nice posts here; about how much better I'm doing and what a good place I'm in now, but I just can't yet. (And I feel guilty about that) Things are just SO screwed up. Where do I start?

The reason we 'nons' need to

The reason we 'nons' need to get stronger is FOR US. When you realize that it has NOThING to do with the ADHDer and everything to do with us, and our own happiness, then you are able to stop seeing it as "just another sacrifice we have to make for our ADHDer". We are "tired, worn out, depressed, sad and emotionally bankrupt" because we are being controlled by our spouses ADHD. IT IS NOT ABOUT THEM!!! IT IS NOT ABOUT WHAT THEY ARE DOING TO US!! It is about what WE have allowed ourselves to become. It is about taking control back of our own LIVES!!!

It is no more 'unfair' than to expect someone else to give us what we aren't able to give ourselves. I certainly hope you're not reading from me that we are never to expect anything from our spouses. What usually happens is quite the opposite..we get more from them than we ever thought they had to give when we stop focusing on the wrong things and trying to change things that not within our ability to change. I disagree as well that they don't notice the change...quite the opposite experience for me too. Yes, we all need encouragment...and again I'll stress that we can't always ask for things we can't give in return. I know I tend to expect support, love, and encouragment from him when I'm not willing to give the same in return. We are 'beaten down' because we allow ourselves to be beaten down. It isn't pretty, but it is the truth.

I have spent almost 14 years living my life dealing with disappointment after disappointment...heartache after heartache, but what saddens me the most and disappoints me the most is that I let it all consume me and make me someone I didn't want to be. Furthermore, I allowed it myself to become a 'victim' and that isn't a role I want any part of.

You asked "Where do I start?" and I say start with you. I have honestly NEVER 'gotten it' until just one week ago today...even though I was able to let go of my anger, stop trying to control him, and fall in love with him all over again. I believe the current struggle was God's way of saying "you have a lot to learn" and I finally get it. Finally. Thank you Lord.

You raise a good point Sherri

Especially when it comes to recent diagnosis. From the ADHD perspective, the condition is something that we have had to cope with, some more successfully than others, our whole lives. As I speak with others like myself,I find that for the most part we feel isolated and alone especially in trying to let people into our heads. talking to another ADHD is like finding somebody who speaks English while you are traveling in a foreign country. It is interesting that so many of the ADHD males are computer programmers etc. Emotional self reliance, done well or poorly, is an unavoidable reality in many of our lives. Often, even therapists don't "get" what is happening to us or how we think, unless they have ADHD themselves.

In this scenario, an ADHD needs a partner who is healthy emotionally. Healthy is not the same as strong. I was very strong for years growing up in an alcoholic single family, but I was also emotionally drained. Many of us have grown up with ADHD parents who likely had a negative impact on us. While often we are attracted to people who have some type of vulnerability, like so many of us so often feel we do, the truth of the matter is that until one has begun to deal with their own issues in some concrete fashion, it is impossible to support someone else. The non ADHD partner has to take responsibility for their own emotional health because in the majority of cases, we can not help you with that. If both partners can bring that to the relationship, then the work that is require too build the relationship is possible.

My partner and I are seeing individual therapists. I asked mine what he thought of couples counseling. His opinion was that couples work, until we sorted our own issues, would be non productive. I think I have mentioned that my husband has a rage issue. It is sudden and without warning and usually for something baffling. the best advice I ever got was "you don't own that anger, it belongs to him." I try to keep that in mind now and it is very liberating, is not always easy to remember in the heat of the moment.

So I guess what I am trying to say is that it is contingent on each of us to take responsibility for our own emotional health and bring that to the relationship table. I remember hearing something along the line of "you can't love another,if you don't love yourself" I think that is relevant here.

...also, it is important to

...also, it is important to recognize any and all efforts (obvious and not so obvious) to try and bring about change in our marriage. The only true change will come when the responsibility of that change is placed on the correct person's shoulders. I thought I had everything figured out for years...why he did X, how to stop him from doing Y, what his motivation was for doing Z, and could predict the outcome almost everytime...because I was taking away his responsibility for changing himself and trying to do it for him. Another hard pill to swallow....but even hidden intent in things I did or said were something that hit me like a ton of bricks as well. I want this man to get better and stronger and healthier for all of the right reasons and none of the wrong (for fear of losing me). I cannot ask him to take responsibility for his own emotional health and then sit back and expect him to take care of mine too.

Great Points Sherri and Simora!

Sherri... You say "The reason we 'nons' need to get stronger is FOR US. When you realize that it has NOThING to do with the ADHDer and everything to do with us, and our own happiness,..."

My wife's role in life has always been "The Pleaser". She and I both grew up with abusive step-fathers, hers was verbally AND physically abusive (to her Mom & Brother), mine was verbally abusive to me and cheated on my mom. Also Very Notable: She lost a sibling at a tragically young age and her younger brother had major health issues as a young boy.

There is some common ground setup for our similar backgrounds. My wife is a "Worrier" related to the "Pleaser" and it's her responsibility to make everything right for everybody in her family (Especially if they are sick) and at her job. Because of these things she is Hyper-Critical of herself (Low-Self Esteem) and all of the perceived failures and has anger/guilt issues. She was seeing a therapist long before I saw one. Her sessions almost always revolved around her mom and brother. When I came up during the sessions regarding bad temper towards me, the therapist asked her if she always tried to "Please" me too? Her reply was "My husband is fine, very laid back and I don't have to worry about him." The therapist told her she takes care of everyone "But" her husband. Which was a bit shocking to her and she told me this after the session, suddenly feeling guilty. I never wanted to add to her load.

Since my ADD diagnosis... She has been very mad because she feels like she now has to take care of me too. Her "Rock of Stability" has cracks in it. The stability included trust and due to her childhood she has major trust issues. Now "I" feel better, my "Pill" makes me skinny, and I get the "Easy Fix" as usual for my Disorder, and she Still has Depression, Anger and issues and her "Pills" have weight gain and loss of sex drive as "Side Effects" and it's not fair, she says... She says she has to see her therapist, but she won't, I've asked for couples therapy with her therapist (We met with her once after my diagnosis) she does not think we need to... She has gotten really into the church in the last year and a half, which I encourage, but I am not very religious and this is a great concern for her. We discussed our differences long before marriage and I agreed the children would benefit from the church and my views would stay to myself. My position is still the same, but she has gotten a little more hard-core. I gladly go to church every Sunday with her and the kids, but I do not want to be anymore involved personally. I know she benefits personally from the study groups. Sorry I was off course, but that was relevant to the over-all picture. She has to work on herself, if she wants to be happy and then WE can be happy. 

Simora... You say "As I speak with others like myself,I find that for the most part we feel isolated and alone especially in trying to let people into our heads. talking to another ADHD is like finding somebody who speaks English while you are traveling in a foreign country..." I first I thought I was seeing ADD in people because I was hyper-focused on it, but as time went on I saw that most of my closest friends were ADD (Already Diagnosed before me) or most likely ADD and undiagnosed. I can say anything to them... All the off the wall comments and shocking out of the blue statements and we all laugh! Things I don't dare say around others and my wife is highly annoyed when I say them around her. 

Great comments from you two! It really got me thinking this morning and now I need to get back to work :-)

YYZ

DF's picture

keeping the port going...

YYZ - I've always had an athletic build myself so the little exercise I do is very beneficial.  My wife on the other hand has lost some weight over that past year and she looks amazing.  back when we were intimate she was insatiable, but then I was the same person and proceeded to run my nails down her chalk board.

 

You also mentioned above that your not sure your wife should come to this sight to learn about people in our position and in hers.  I myself just want something, anything.  She doesn't understand it and I'm still learning more about it.  You, Sherri and Simora are blessed with coversation with your spouses.  I'm still trying to get to that point since I kind of lost it ( my doing ).  I'd like to do date nights, but she has a lot of stress over bills, ones that I'm trying harder to help with that my carefree lifestyle has not been a part of.  A couple beers could help her relax and I don't abuse the priveledge of her presence by coming at her with a left hook - " So when are we going to talk?"  Heck I'd settle for coffee, lunch, movie, walks, whatever.  I just don't feel like she wants to be alone with me right now.  I'm not prone to blowing up, but as I'd mentioned in other posts, I frown a lot and seem frustrated ( thoughts racing ).  Maybe she could just ask me in stead of assuming all the time..........

I personally think (hope) that if she does decide to come to this site she will find something positive in it.  There's good people on both sides of the coin here.

DF

I can talk to my spouse because I have ADHD and he does too. The one thing that this site has shown me was that rather than having a harder time in our relationship because of that, we actually have better understanding of each other and therefore a great deal more tolerance. We might, and do, screw up more often, but we can problem solve together. I find that when my therapist is having trouble understanding my husbands rage, I am well suited to explain ADHD emotional regulation to him. We talk, to an extent, because as he so often tells me, who else would have us. It is survival on a very exciting roller coaster as opposed to a runaway elevator. I am often troubled by my ADHD because it is frustrating to understand things in a way that verges on intuitive without having the means to explain it to others. but I think it would be boring to be otherwise. Besides, it helps me to understand my man so much better.

Not Exactly, for me...

My wife has not come to this site and I have mentioned it many times, sent her the link, left posts up on my laptop, but to no avail. My wife discounts the affects of ADD on us and says she liked me before and other than being "Skinny" I'm still about the same. I probably hit her too hard with the early discovery phase, so I would recommend letting your wife ask you about what you have learned in her time. I made a mistake because I hyper-focused on ADD and told her all the things that were me while reading my first book. I was un-medicated and could not help myself :-)

Thanks Sherri. I know and

Thanks Sherri. I know and agree w what you say but my mOments of weakness when my low self esteem comes on strong can get the better of me, especially late at night. He had just worked yet another 3 day shift without thought of what that meant to us. I know this and am trying to overcome it. The problem is that lately, it is not so much the point of not getting what I need from him its that with his defenses up it feels like he sometimes TAKES from me what I have. Having said that, I recognize that this has been a hugely traumatic journey for him also. I want this to be an outcome where we both find peace and the happiness together we both deserve. There is love and children... But I am still trying to figure things out too. I need to be safe and that is something that can not be nor should be negotiable (meaning emotionally, financially, etc.) And our needs BOTH must be valued. I cant let it happen any other way..

"I need to be safe and that

"I need to be safe and that is something that can not be nor should be negotiable (meaning emotionally, financially, etc.) And our needs BOTH must be valued. I cant let it happen any other way.."

Absolutely! These are boundaries for me too. I set these boundaries at the very beginning of our reconciliation. They didn't happen overnight, but I never stopped fighting for them. You have every right to ask for certain things and expect certain things...the hardest part of giving the same things we ask...even when we don't feel they deserve it. (kindness, love, compassion, and respect).

This 'lady' agrees with that lady...

This has been the most informative day EVER!!  I'm new to this site as of this afternoon, and LOVE everyone of you ladies that have suffered in silence, feeling like in the next 'round' it will all be normal, but struggle in the whirlpool expectedly unexpectedly present at every moment.  Predictable, but with a determined desire for change.  It will happen.  God brought us all together to make sure the outcomes we seek is loving and peaceful, because we do love our ADHDer  AND ourselves, (otherwise we wouldn't be here 'ready' for the change).  God bless you and you are in my prayers.  Stay strong, Wise and Wonderful!!!

To the OP - No advice from

To the OP -

No advice from me - just wanted to let you know I understand how you feel. I just recently separated from my ADHD DH. It was not an easy choice for me. I tried countless times to "save" our marriage because I love him and because we have children together. My family thinks it is just "another fight" and he'll be home soon but it isn't and he won't. I've made a promise to myself this time & I will stick to it. If he doesn't change - he doesn't come home.

My DH is very good at saying he's going to do something but then he never follows through.  In this case - he needs to show me he wants to be in this relationship - not just tell me.  I don't want our marriage to end - I'd love for our marriage to work but at the same time I've decided I won't stay in a marriage that is detrimental to my mental health. We've been to counseling and he's been to counseling.  I honestly don't think he takes his ADHD and the effects they have on him and our family seriously and until he does - there isn't much I can do.  I've supported him over the years (new jobs, unemployment, new hobbies, the ADHD, depression, etc.) and have decided it is time to start supporting myself and my children. I need to carve my own path.

Do I miss him? Yes, very much. Do I miss having a "connection" with someone? Everyday! Do I miss holding him at night?  Yes!  When I see him I'm hit with emotions. But then I remember why I'm not with him right now. I love the song "A little bit stronger" by Sara Evans. When I listen to it I'm reminded that each day I make it on my own without him I am getting a little bit stronger.