Lost and Broken

I don't know where to start. Maybe I am hoping that my husband will stumble upon this and read it and a light bulb will go off.

I have read many of your posts and am convinced that there is something wrong with my DH. I think ADHD describes him, but yet I also see a little bit of narcissism as well. Unfortunately this is all undiagnosed as it is clearly "my issue that is affecting the marriage". My husband refuses to believe anything is wrong with him and I am so lost. We have been together for nine years and married for seven. We share kids from previous relationships, but have none of our own.

A little background about my husband is that he has very strained relationships with most people in his life, yet it has always been someone else's fault because he is never wrong. He believes that once everyone gets on board with that the world will be a better place. So all of you free thinking women who want to stand up for themselves are just stupid and crazy in his eyes. His parents tossed him out when he was 14 and he spent the majority of his childhood involved in bouncing around, petty crimes, etc. When he was 21 he hit and killed a woman who was in the middle of the road. Technically it wasn't his fault, though he didn't have insurance so he shall pay dearly the rest of his life. This has affected most of what goes on in his decision making. He believes that he has and holds a "stable job" for me and the kids. It's like he doesn't feel the need to grow up and have responsibilities on his own accord.

On the eve of our wedding we had a huge fight . It was actually just him screaming at me for some unknown reason. I should have known right from the start. He is the type of person who is either very excited and happy (singing and being silly around the house), drawing attention towards himself or he is a force to be reckoned with. He has never physically hurt me though he has threatened me several times. The kids are scared of him when he is like this and I am just ...tired. I am not scared because I think he is weak. I want to help him. When we argue it will escalate very quickly to the point where he will say "I'm not responsible for what happens when you push me too far". He has almost no self control as well. We don't go for family dinners and have a glass of wine. We go for dinners and he has three beers. Then a six pack at home. He is far more aggressive when he drinks. He has actually refused to go places with me if there will not be alcohol there. He refuses to go places in general, such as my work Christmas party because he thinks they are all "idiots and wetback weak minded c*nts". And the language is pretty typical. At my sister's wedding I missed the first dance because he got drunk and started an altercation with my father, so I had to take my husband out of there. He left me and I spent the night alone.

Throughout the years situation like this have happened over and over. At the start he kept saying that he would try to be better, be less mad, etc. Now I have lost quite a bit of weight since we got married whereas he has put at least 50lbs on. He works a 9-5 shift and does the cooking for the kids. That's it. He forces the kids (teenagers) to do the chores. I get home from the gym and walk the dog, do the laundry, run errands, etc. He sits in front of the TV until bedtime in which he commands to me "should I come to bed because you haven't sucked my d*ck in weeks". That's the sweet romantic side. Nothing is below him in what he says. I have been called every name in the book. And we fight like this in front of the kids.

We had previously split in 2007 due to the fact that his drinking and staying away from home had become too much for me. His best friend had died and he suck into a depression. After eight months we got back together because I was stupid enough to believe things were different. Then it started again and has gotten progressively worse. He used to get mad at me because I didn't want to get "sh*tfaced with him" (I'm not a big drinker). Now he just does it on his own. He can polish off a case of beer NO PROBLEM. He goes out and drinks and stays at his friends house. He justifies it because we have had a fight and thought we were over. Last year I told him we needed to see a counselor. He stated that only "Weak idiots see doctors and that he wasn't wasting his money. You are going to have to pay for it yourself!!" Six months later I tried again and he said that nothing was wrong with him, "I was the crazy one who needed medication so maybe I should consider checking myself into a mental institution!".

Yesterday his cell phone was acting up so he suggested that we go look at getting it fixed. He went off at the poor kid in the store for about a half an hour and pretty much threatened him and all of the employees. He said it was worth taking an assault charge. We left (of course I am always embarrassed) and went home and a fight with us started. he told me that I was getting all "c*nt eyed on him" and I forced him to get his phone fixed????????? After all of these years I am so used to the crazy making, gaslighting, blame twisting that I pretty much block it out. Then he said to me "YOU HAVE NEVER DONE ANYTHING TO MAKE OUR MARRIAGE BETTER BECAUSE YOU DON'T WORK AT IT".

Needless to say a light went off in my head. No matter what I do or say it will always be butting heads with him. He is my best friend but I refuse to let him treat me this way anymore. I am so sad that he feels that he can do so much better than me.  I am a good wife and a great mother. I cannot change him. I tried to make boundaries for myself so that I wouldn't allow him to manipulate me or walk all over me, but he doesn't respect them. I told him this morning that I am not willing to accept this any longer and we need help. He said that I am the one with the problem and he refuses to take medication or see a therapist. I guess he has made my decision for me. I feel so broken and worthless.


Oh what to say...

I am very sorry you are going through this.  I think you should feel strong for standing up for yourself and recognizing its not your fault and that you can't change him. Remember that his decision not to seek help is not a personal reflection of you, it's about him. It's not that you aren't worth fighting for, but rather that he is unwilling to look at himself and take responsibility. A lifelong pattern for him that will probably never change. Please take care of yourself and your kids. No one needs to be surrounded by such toxicity.

barneyarff's picture

run Don't even turn around


Don't even turn around and look back.

Your kids don't deserve this and neither do you.


Teach your children that men are not allowed to act this way.  run.

This is my opinion.


Grrr's picture

Anger, Frustration and ADHD

I feel for you. I know what it feels like. I have read that there is a small percentage of men like ours who actually admit that they have a problem. You can't fix what you don't acknowledge. They are emotional, mental and spiritual abusers. Has he been diagnosed? It sounds like you have the strength to leave him. I urge you to do this again. He will likely not change. You must be strong and stand your ground. It sounds like you are an educated woman. Not many people know the term "gaslighting" and know what it means. Stay strong. Surround yourself with happy people and people who will treat you like a lady. Your kids are worth it. You are worth it.

carathrace's picture

a better life is out there for you

This is just my opinion, but I think more is going on with him than ADHD.  Could be Oppositional Defiance Disorder, you can read about it here https://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/9139.html.  Could be Antisocial Personality Disorder, you can read about that here https://psychcentral.com/disorders/antisocial-personality-disorder-symptoms/.

You probably don't care what it's called.  I'm not a psychiatrist, so I have no idea if it's either of those.  My point in saying this is, it sounds like he has a lot wrong, and since he's unwilling to check it out much less change, you are going to continue to be at the mercy of his symptoms as long as you stay with him.  I feel really bad for you.  But I think a better life is out there for you than with this man.


I couldn't help but laugh at this because ANYTHING would make me feel better. Just to have the doctor say it is HIM and not YOU would make me cry. For all of these years I have felt undermined, confused and always questioned that maybe something was wrong with me. He accuses me of being overly sensitive and emotional. From what I see, that is not really a bad thing.  I'm crying because I am overwhelmed and tired of his anger. What hurts me the most is that we aren't a partnership anymore. Maybe we never were. I thought he might have been a little jealous because I changed my lifestyle and attitude about exercise. I tried to include him, I try to support him and his needs. He thinks he's doing me a favor just coming home to me. Years ago when he used to drink and drive (he actually has changed this)he dove his van into a large construction pit because some "c*nt" cut him off. I picked him up and he blamed the whole incident on me. If he wasn't in a rush, if he was getting more sex, etc. I don't understand the lack of accountability.

Grrr's picture

You are not worthless

You are not worthless. My guy blames me for everything that goes wrong too.  Al-anon meetings might help you feel more supported and understood. I wish you well.


Force yourself to walk in to

Force yourself to walk in to an al-anon meeting.  You will find support there for families of people where one person has a drinking problem.  His drinking problem has become your family's problem.  

Lights going off

I am so sorry that you are going through this. I agree that there's so much more than ADHD going on with your spouse. 

My thoughts are: your husband is abusing you. Verbally and emotionally. Look up verbal and emotional abuse and you will see what I mean. And he has threatened to become physically violent, which is assault and illegal. Much of his behavior is not ok. You deserve to be able to live without fear. Something is making you stay, hoping he will change, but he isn't, is he? 

Please don't spend more time waiting for his light bulb to go off. Because it may not. Or it may not for a long time. What I am reading says that he has not been able to be a healthy partner for you from day one, right? You sound like a caring, thoughtful person who loves her children. Use that energy to take care of yourself right now. Save yourself. Take them out of there. The longer they witness this, the more their ideas of love and relationships will become twisted. Boys learn to be men by watching their fathers. Show them the example of one strong, healthy parent. See a therapist yourself or whatever you need to do. It sounds to me like you need to hear these words a few more times. I would start documenting his words and behavior and drinking patterns. You may need the info at some point. You can love him and offer support, but you can also get out of this situation that is so unhealthy for you and your kids. Al anon may be helpful, too. An alcoholic will not stop drinking for another person, no matter how much that other person loves him. 

You are not a victim. Stop using your energy trying to convince him--it has gone too far for that for now. It may sound cold, but I said this to myself once: his behavior is so wrong that why he is doing it has to take a backseat to getting away from it. Save yourself. You really can have a better life and you do not deserve to be with someone who abuses you. You have told him this is unacceptable, so prove it to yourself. My best to you. 

You are not broken or worthless.

Just remember that no one can change him.  It doesn't make you worthless that  he is unable to change for you, I doubt he'd be able to change for anyone, including Angelina Jolie, lol.  I just mean that this is entirely about him and has nothing to do with you or how much you are worth.  Only you can determine your worth.  And by standing up to him and making clear your boundaries, you are declaring how worthful you are!  And strong!  You are certainly not broken although you may feel that way.  Your actions show otherwise.  They show just how not broken, strong, and full of worth you are by sticking to your guns and demanding he treat you better or hit the road. 

I've been searching for jobs all week and feel I'm very close to getting one and moving out myself.  I can just feel it and I'm so excited!  It's time for a change.

I'm generally anti-divorce. I

I'm generally anti-divorce. I do believe that ADHDers can get help and/or make a change for the better.

My ADHD husband used to have a similar attitude about nothing being wrong with him, nothing being wrong with our marriage (despite the fact I was depressed, seeing a counselor, wanted to leave him, was on anti-depressants, etc.), it was all in my head, etc. It took him literally hitting rock bottom before he began to see the light, so to speak. We were living separately, 100 miles apart, and he was living in an apt with dog poo all over the floor because his roommates wouldn't clean up after their pets, and flipping burgers at a dive bar. It took his family basically disowning him and me threatening a formal separation (before Thanksgiving, no less) to finally get him into counseling. To get him to finally see that he had to change, not for anyone else, but for himself.

But with all that being said, even at his worse, he was not a drinker (his grandfather was an alcoholic so he hates drunks), he was never verbally or physically abusive to me, and though there were times when I felt that he didn't respect me with his behavior (his time management issues or inability to help around the house), he never once told me that it was time to suck his d*ck.

Flat out, ADHD or opposition defiance disorder or maybe even bi-polar, if he refuses to do anything to help himself, you need to look out for yourself and your children. You are essentially in an abusive relationship, which is why you feel so broken and upset. He has convinced you over the years that you are worthless when that couldn't be farther from the truth. He is the worthless one right now because he has to demean other people to make himself feel better.

My heart hurts for you. But good luck in whatever you decide to do.