Since it's hard to talk to my ADD husband (who's not a member on this site), I wrote a letter (to help me)

Babe,

I try to talk to you, but I don't know how to say how I feel in a manner that you'd understand. I try talking and expressing my feelings only to shutter at the very thought of why I even attempted because I am met with not being understood nor feeling appreciated.  I am afraid you don't want me to say anything unless it's to validate your ADD ways/emotions.  So, because I don't agree?  I don't utter a word.  

But, inside of me, there are words and feelings waiting to come out and tell you how I feel! Like how much I love you, that I miss you, that beyond all pain and hurts ...I still want YOU!  How I love you despite my broken heart, how I need you in my life, how I've made the adjustments that you said you needed, how I cry in the bathroom and turn on the water so no one hears me, how I feel when you talk to other people negatively about me and allow them to do the same without defending me ...your wife, the woman who loves you in the midst of all hurts, confusions, pains, and tears!

I'm sorry that I haven't been available to be there for you when you needed me.  But how is it fair to talk to other woman sexually, secretly, and think that those actions will bring us closer?  Why do I stay?  It's not because of how you look, looks fade.  It's not the income you make, I don't do bad 'income wise' either.  It's not because we have children, it's not because of our home, it's not because of friends, family members, nor material things. 

I don't think you'll ever fully understand how much I am hurting because I feel that I am caught up in a cyclic cycle of ADD that results in the inability to understand the other.  I remain here, with you for not other reasons but.... simply that YOU ARE LOVED, YOU DESERVE TO BE LOVED, YOU ARE WANTED, YOU ARE NEEDED, and more importantly..... YOU ARE VALUED!  Not by the sluts on the internet, not by an ex, not by a friend who doesn't know me/us, not by your parents, not by your friends or anyone else outside of US... but by someone who still gets goose bumps at the very slightest touch you place on the nape of my neck, by someone who smiles and feels so lucky to be your wife when you walk into a room, by someone who loves hearing your laughs (and miss them), by someone who think that you are the sexiest man on this planet, and by someone who absolutely loves your soul... your 'intent', your willingness to comfort me in the midst of your pain... It's me... Your wife, your friend, the mother of your children ...the one who still wants to grow older with you!

Can we keep going on the same as we have?  Nope....I don't think neither of us could take it.  Should things change?  Most definitely.... Are you willing to put in the work, talk to your Dr. in hopes of having your medications adjusted?  Stop drinking?  Reevaluate the need to be on anti depressants?  Exercise?....just doing the things that make you a better you without compromising our 'marital' boundaries?  I sure hope so....

Love....

Although the above is to my husband ...who I've tried saying these very words to - - will never read this ....I am sure I am not alone in the above sentiments.  I know that there are other wives/partners to men who have ADD... who've felt and/or feel the same way I do.

 

E-mails never ever ever

E-mails never ever ever worked for me. I may as well have sent it to some far away land to some stranger because it was/is one of the least effective ways of communication for me and my husband. (He is ADHD)

I feel your pain...we can all relate to the struggles you're facing, in one way or the other...but I doubt this will be an effective way of getting through to him. Are you two in counseling? Often the communication barriers are so huge that you just simply don't 'hear' each other the way it is intended. Chances are he knows exactly every.single.thing he does that hurts you and causes problems in your marriage. It isn't a matter of him not knowing, it is a matter of him not managing his ADHD enough to be able to do anything to change it. Although I probably wrote close to 100 e-mails like the one above, I can now tell you exactly what you're saying that will make him defensive, what you're saying that he will feel 'nagged' and 'controlled', what he'll just completely skip over, and that the overall feeling he'll take away from it is "you need to fix you". You can show him with your actions how much you love him, you can try and understand his ADHD and why it manifests itself the way it does, but until you learn to detach from it and just let him be responsible for making his own decisions and facing his own consequences, he'll continue to 'live up to your low expectations'. Don't point out to him how wrong chatting with his 'sluts' online is, instead prove to him how amazing you are by starting to love yourself again. Prove you love him by letting him live his own life, make his own decisions..sink or swim.

Have you read Melissa's book? It can help you figure out ways to simply communicate to him...and help you get out of the cycle you're in. Focus on YOU and let him focus on him.

I'm also wondering what effect (negative) drinking would have on his ability to treat his ADHD. Even if he's taking meds, alcohol is a downer and my husband is always REALLY grouchy and irritable the day after he drinks...so it seems it would be counteractive to his treatment.

 

I feel your pain Keturah, I

I feel your pain Keturah, I know it well and Im sorry. No as far as I know, he has not spoken to other women like your husband. But he has spent months/ over a year disregarding the needs of his wife, his kids - and "indulging in more fun stuff" like hanging out in the bars with his buddies or by himself. Or working a ridiculously hyoerfocused amount of time to he exclusion if all else. He has said hurtful things: " I dont love you, i just dont have the nerve to leave" followed by a a momentary refocus on his kids and me. I have worked hard in becoming the person I want to become and that includes trying to purge the anger and bitterness in my heart that I once held for my (at the time) undiagnosed add hubby for so many years. I continue to do pretty much everything unless he is willing for that given moment to help. And he is more than capable of doing so if he wanted, even with the ADD. The alcohol is a very real problem and, sadly, he has slipped into an alcoholic, yet functional for him, life. I have not much family anymore save my young kids, and I am trying hard to make the transition into a more fulltime working career while still resisting it emotionally because of the age of my little one. Plus, I still greatly love my husband too, like you. Sherri is right though, you need to work on becoming a more independent and strong you. To put aside that feeling of denigration, embarrassment, and feelings of low self worth from all that this relationship is putting you through- and work towards getting your corner of peace and happiness. Sherri pointed out to me (thanks s!), that you can strive for that goal without feelng forced to walk away from the marriage. In fact, you will HAVE to, if you want to keep your sanity. Love is important and a thing to be cherished, but it can not only be about the love you have in your marriage, but for yourself as well. In the meantime, my dh states he will try to work on being around more, which is good, but the feeling that it wont really happen is so overwhelming at this point, ... Well I can only pray and keep my faith.