Need to talk?

So like most here, I need to communicate things to my husband that he just can not hear or process. Like most here he gets defensive, angry, interrupts me and eventually manipulates the whole conversation to go in a direction that better suits him. Like some here I have cried til my eyes hurt, screamed til my throat bleeds, I have lost patches of hair due to stress and now suffer from anxiety.....all in an effort to simply be heard, acknowledged and understood. I often ask myself out loud like the crazy person he has made me out to be...can he hear me?....while he defends and I speaking a different language?......I do feel that banging my head against the wall provides better results than attempting to convey something to my husband sooooo I need to let this out....its as though we are not allowed to express our feelings so I suggest that this thread be a place where we can express ourselves freely! I will now unload my feelings in hopes that being able to complete a sentence or thought might bring some comfort.....I have nothing to lose.........


I feel lost, lonely, confused, tired, one word....defeated. I wish I had a shoulder to cry on. I wish I had safe arms of comfort around me. I wish I wasn't always so alone! I wish I could talk without being interrupted or screamed at. I wish I didn't have two days of anxiety before even making an attempt to communicate. I wish I didn't have two hours of anxiety before my husband gets home from work, wondering and worrying what mood he will be in. I wish I wasn't so sad.....I set goals to have a day without tears....then the realization that I am setting such a goal brings me to tears. I feel degraded, dismissed and at times invisible. I often miss the love, attention and affection.....but then when it returns I am too bitter and resentful to accept it or appreciate it so I have just been without. I wish my husband knew how much I hurt. I wish he knew how much it hurts when I am talking to him about something important to me and he falls asleep, or when he just stares at the tv and looks right through me, or when I am expressing a feeling and he just blurts out hey this is that commercial I was telling you about. It make me feel very unimportant, insignificant and quite unloved. I wish I felt pretty or dare I say beautiful. I wish I felt safe and secure. I wish I didn't need this xanax. I wish my mom didn't have cancer, or that I at least had a strong support system at home. I wish I knew who I am anymore and secretly I always wished someone knew how I felt......and now someone does......thank you for reading and being that someone!!

justme2013's picture

So today I contemplate

So today I contemplate I do so often. Would it really be easier? I don't know, but I am chasing my own tail here. Had a bank issue today because of something he forgot to do and when I address the issue he just goes right into defense mode and starts raising his voice about how he is so sick of every thing being his fault......sounding much like a toddler, which I already have two of and really can't do a third! I feel that in a normal marriage the party who forgot and caused the issue would respond with Oh my, I forgot all about that I am so sorry....or something like that. Here it is war. He is sick of being the blame for everything, sick of every thing being his fault, hes sorry he is not perfect like me....quickly switching to ok then everything is my fault, always is so as usual I am sorry, always sorry....thats me the guy who is always wrong and always sorry.....

Its the same thing every time, like it's scripted. Our neighbors must think we are rehearsing lines or something.....I feel I can not do this any longer. I feel I will be letting my children down if I don't try to deal with this. I don't know what to do but know that right now I am contemplating divorce and need to figure this out! I also know that I used to love roller coasters until I rode one for 15 years.........

justme2013's picture

This argument is STILL going

This argument is STILL going on! It is no longer about the bank....that was lost 30 seconds in. It has since gone through the usual areas, sticking with the script. The more I cry and scream that I can not do this one more time, that I just need a moment of peace and clarity, the more he talks, denies, deflects, and shifts. He is at work and I am at home and have simply stopped taking his calls at this point. I am a mess, I am shaking with upset which is actually quite the norm. I can not stress enough how much like a script every argument is, word for word.....I swear I have lost my mind somewhere in the process of living life walking in circles saying and doing the exact same things over and over and over.......

I expressed with great distress that I physically, mentally and emotionally can not do it one more time, hung up the phone and have let it ring since.....I am at the end of my rope and just don't know what to do..............

And yes I am aware that I am now talking to myself here, but I guess that has become quite the norm as well.......and saying that makes me wonder if I am crazy.....and that is normal too.....I recognize the cycle here, just don't know how to break it........

justme2013's picture

It has now been quiet for

It has now been quiet for almost an hour, if all goes according to the script he will call in an hour or so and be very chipper saying what cha doin, hows the kids....sorry bout earlier, I don't like to fight with wanna go out this weekend? It's usually somewhere around there, like nothing ever people are not damaged, hurt, or angry here.....just an aloof and care free tone is what he will have...............

I don't dare try to say something know what happened earlier really upset me or was unacceptable or is a problem for me....etc because then I get to hear about how I hold grudges when in reality nothing has ever been resolved, how every time he does one little thing wrong I am mad for days when in reality one little thing wrong is where we's what that turns into, all that transpires from pointing out one little thing wrong that has me angry for days....but in his mind it is always....jeez I forget to call the bank and she wants a divorce pffffft.....and he really believes this in his head, at that point it's like he has no recollection of what transpired for hours....just jeeez forget to do one little thing and I'm the worlds biggest asshole.......

My life is a train wreck.......

Familiar Cycle

I'm familiar with the gigantic blowout over another thing my partner did/did not do.  I get the same minimization of my feelings, of what he did etc.  It's always "what's the big deal"?  What he doesn't realize is that taken individually these things are no big deal, that all these little things add up into a dysfunctional mess.  I also get the "switch" after a big blowout where it's like nothing ever happened.  When I try to bring it up because I"m still upset (of course I will be only an hour afterwards when my feelings were minimized, ignored or I was insulted repeatedly by him) he says the same thing, "just let it go, already!".  My favorite is when something has just happened and I'm explaining to him calmly why something is upsetting and he tells me that he's "over it now" so I should be too.  Over it?  You were the one that caused the problem!  It's crazy-making it really is.  The good thing is that I learned not to get visibly upset anymore.  When these things happen now I clench my jaw and walk into another room to relax and "do my own thing".  Sometimes I'll write down how I'm feeling and read it to him later or email it to him.  It relaxes the dynamic a little bit so there isn't this big swell of energy, fighting, etc.  It also gives him time to think without having to be defensive.  Lately, though he's been really insulting me a lot and way out of proportion to the cause.  For instance we were asked to design and print some wedding invitations for someone in his family.  I simply asked him to stop texting (which he had been doing for over an hour continuously while we were working) and focus on the work we needed to do, which I guess he took as an attack on the very essence of his being because what I got back immediately from him was something along the lines of me being a loser without any friends or a job (I got laid off recently).  The insults are always WAY out of proportion and they really hurt.  I figured out quickly though that the more hurt I reacted he would continue to use those insults as ammunition later.  If I don't react he thinks it hasn't pushed my buttons and he won't try it again since it didn't seem to work.

justme2013's picture

YES! Very familiar with the

YES! Very familiar with the "whats the big deal" attitude and also the "get over it" attitude. This whole cycle is crazy-making for sure! I like your idea and REALLY need to try harder to change my reactions. At this point I react with absolute frustration, anger and distance.....I need to change that, I know. I guess there is always that voice inside that says shouldn't we be angry, upset or whatever when we feel someone is being hurtful to the only way to achieve peace really just a matter of me accepting all this negative behavior and simply learning to be ok with it? It seems so obvious that the one who exhibits so much destructive behavior should be the one learning a new way of life yet what I hear most is AGAIN placing the responsibility on the non adhd partner to learn to adapt to this behavior. This is all difficult to understand.....but I am eager to learn simply because I DO love my husband.....I REALLY DO....I just need to understand this so I can make an educated decision on whether or not I can live with all the things wrong and the lack of the things needed or not.


I am so sorry you are going through this. This is how it goes here too.  One spouse uses the drama to its best effect for himself. The other spouse tries to play on a team and listen and be sensitive to the team's indivuals.  It seems to me that dh is "training" me to NOT talk about anything that might upset him, like his responsibilities, future decisions, feelings, plans or improvements.  It seems like he has  "taught" me to take care of all those things myself so that he doesn't have to feel the heavy weight of his own responsibilities.  Then after decades, a spouse looks at how life went and realizes that all she thought she was working so hard for is that HE didn't get "in trouble" or have to do his share of work. You just feel stupid for having been manipulated. 

My spouse's reaction to me

My spouse's reaction to me talking about difficult subjects is to shut down and then to get depressed.  "Oh, poor me, look, I get sad and can't deal with this!"  And damn me, I fall for it.  

justme2013's picture

YEP! I know this one too. I

YEP! I know this one too. I usually don't go for this one anymore and can diffuse that scene by remaining calm and honestly repeating some words like I am upset as well but we need to work this out as adults, I am speaking to you with respect and as an adult so take a deep breath so we can do this......along those usually snaps him out of the poor me part. I am struggling with the other areas that cause me to react harshly out of anger and frustration....

justme2013's picture

YES times I feel

YES times I feel very stupid and manipulated. I have also been taught to fix what he has broken and carry most of the weight. I am always needed for help which REALLY means I do it for him because he just doesn't know how....I'm not good at that stuff like you are he will say. So 90% of the time he is the lost child that can not seem to do much without assistance and specificly says I NEED to remind him of everything and tell him what to do since he usually does not know, the other 10% of the time he is the rebellious teen who loudly declares how he can do things for himself and does not need to be told what to do and resents me for doing exactly what he has asked me to in charge of EVERYTHING! Have you found any technique to be effective in these situations....or are you looking for the light at the end of the tunnel as well?

I try to remember to ask

I try to remember to ask myself "is this his problem or my problem or both of ours?"  If it's his problem, I try to not say anything, but I often fail at keeping quiet, because I tend to be a compulsive "helper."  I'm really trying to work on shutting off my desire to help.  If something is my problem, I either deal with it myself or ask my husband for help, with an explanation of why I need his help.  It is when the problem is joint that I struggle the most.  For example, my husband has not had a stable, good-income producing job in almost four years.  He was fired from his previous job and after a spurt of activity has not applied for any jobs.  (He does do some work but the jobs were given to him; he did not have to apply.  He helps out his elderly parents, and he tutors at the school at which he got a certificate a few years ago.)  This has a major effect on our family finances.  When I talk to my husband about it, he gets depressed.  

I did separate our finances, to the extent possible, a few years ago.  I have a bank account and my husband has a bank account.  I pay most of the bills and then ask for reimbursement as appropriate.  This is working pretty well.


MagicSandwich's picture

There is only one way to

There is only one way to break to cycle, and that is simply to break it. Just stop. Putting down the phone and letting it ring is exactly what you should do. From here on out you are in charge. No exceptions.

justme2013's picture

Thank you did

Thank you did work as far as calming the flames. I guess my issue is that it seems to me that basically I have to simply be calm and walk away from anything important to me and just let things go without a resolve. While I am needing resolution of issues he is needing issues to simply be dropped and never discussed again. I am not sure I can live a life of rug sweeping and still be happy.........

MagicSandwich's picture

Yep, you can't live a happy

Yep, you can't live a happy life where important things needing resolution are swept under the rug.  What I keep reading over and over on this site is the siren call of the needy ADHD spouse for everybody to "Put up or shut up." There is no middle ground. There is no consideration for the "other." It's beyond sad.

I could have written your post....

and it's been 34 years and 5 children later.  Is that what you want?  My children have been my reward for living this way and I am so thankful for them. 

As I sit here 34 years later, I realize that the only way to have had a real life was to leave. I'm not encouraging you to do that, but you must understand, that as a rule, they do not change. So sorry, wish I could tell you differently.

justme2013's picture

16 years and 4 kids here so I

16 years and 4 kids here so I definitely understand the dilemma! My children are also my reward as there is nothing I wouldn't do for them.....and if not for them my life would absolutely be a wasted one! I appreciate your honesty, this is why I am learn, possibly understand....hopefully educate myself enough to make educated decisions about my life and the life of my children. Thank you!

justme2013's picture


I am still here, still drowning and feel I will die or be on 27 medications for anxiety and depression before anything else happens. It's my opinion that divorce is so common here because it seems to be the only sane option! In every forum/article/book etc......the advice for me (the non-adhd partner) is to stop blaming which translates to exactly what the adhd partner accountability for anything ever.....and the other major tip is to stop "nagging" which again translates to exactly what the adhd partner wants, they will NOT do their part and never be accountable for their actions and I will smile about it and say that's ok honey, I will not blame you for something YOU HAVE BLATANTLY DONE BEFORE MY EYES because THAT would be wrong and I certainly won't nag you about it! Are you kidding me???? This is the advice for us???? So double dose on that xanax and sit in your little doped up world and just say yes dear to everything?? Doesn't the word blame imply that someone else has done something and I want to blame you? As adults in an adult relationship I don't blame my husband for anything he hasn't done but I do hold him accountable for things he HAS done. Which as Dr. Phil would say makes me a "right-fighter"'s all a bunch of BS in my opinion. It has most of us on medication to tolerate the behavior of another who actually needs the medication and that makes no sense at all!! C'mon Dr. Orlov there has to be something more than stop blaming and nagging, something more than just take everything they throw at you with a smile and offer them some tea after..........

the name of the game

The name of the game is figuring out how to put up with it. Oh, and medicating yourself when necessary. That's it. There is no other recourse when it comes to sharing a life (or trying to) with illogical, un-listening, entitled people.  Except for leaving, of course. But for REASONS, the option of leaving is usually the last one to consider.  It's not OK.

For the record, yes I said illogical & un-listening & entitled. Come at me world. sorry, really. I sorry, really. I hesitate to use the word sorry, because it means nothing at our house. But I do feel your pain, really. It helps sometimes to have your pain validated, but does nothing to change it. Look at the dates of our original posts, wasn't it January of 2013 or sometime around there?  What's changed in your life, or mine? In my life, my dear husband has become more successful in his work/career. In my life, my years married have turned to 35, and my dear husband has become more of a petulant child to me.  I am slowly making a separate life for myself. I still have a son here at home for another year before he graduates highschool. Que sera', sera'.....what ever will be, will be....and I am excited for whatever my separate life brings me. I'm too young to be lonely, I'm too smart to remain stagnant, and I have too much love left in me to be wasted on such a selfish, cold, indifferent human being. I've become much better at letting him bake in his own screw-ups. Sex has become only a bad memory of the past. It's become natural for me to tell him, "It's your problem, not mine." There has been a whole lot of freedom for me in telling him that....AND meaning it!  The indifference that he has shown me throughout our entire marriage, has become a part of me. The fine line that I walk about indifference is that, as long as I can be indifferent to HIM and not to anyone else, I'll be ok. No one else deserves my indifference, and I do not ever want to be an indifferent person. But in the instance of my dear husband, my indifference has become a mode of survival, akin to, "If you can't beat them, join them."  I cannot change him, I don't want to. I can, and will survive, and I don't have to care what happens to him. Not anymore. Anyone and everyone can give you their opinion on what to do.  I cannot do that. I can only tell you what works for me. I hope and pray you can find peace in your marriage, and the way that you do may look totally different from the way I've found mine. Just find that peace, and survive. <3


You wrote:

You wrote:

 his fault......sounding much like a toddler, which I already have two of and really can't do a third! I feel that in a normal marriage the party who forgot and caused the issue would respond with Oh my, I forgot all about that I am so sorry....or something like that. Here it is war. He is sick of being the blame for everything, sick of every thing being his fault, hes sorry he is not perfect like me....quickly switching to ok then everything is my fault, always is so as usual I am sorry, always sorry....thats me the guy who is always wrong and always sorry.....


Yep. I can definitely relate.......still. We're separated now, so it's easier. I just have to change my responses. I can't blame him or help him. I just have to do whatever it takes to keep him from feeling blamed or stupid. It's a lot easier since my happiness is no longer tied to his actions. 

Good luck.