So I'm very new to this forum after spending the week Googling myself into oblivion, which is what I do when I'm trying to figure something out.
Some history (briefly, I will try!): I've been with my husband for 9 years, we've been married for 3. We've had our ups and downs, but I am the longest relationship he has had -- by a long shot. He was married once before but they were only together in the same place for under a year before he moved away. My husband has always "known" there was something wrong with him, and it bothers him a lot. We've talked about it over the years (in bits and pieces, he only really lets loose a couple of times a year with really personal stuff, so a bit here, and a bit there)... but I really never put it all together until now. I'm a bit disappointed in myself for that, because I had all of the basic information to figure out what's going on-- but I was dealing with my own health issues the past few years and was in kind of my own fog, so never did.
He has a daughter who has never lived with him, she was born when he was 18 and the mom had moved on to another guy before she was born. Later, the mom got in contact (for child support), and he's been peripherally involved with her since then (they live 800 miles away and he's in the military). We found out several years ago that she has ADHD, and at that point I realized that he probably did too, but due to being in my own little world didn't REALLY sit down and do the research. (A side note, I am the researchy type... when I'm wondering about something I look it up, but frankly I was way to preoccupied trying to figure out my own complicated health issues that I didn't take the time or REALIZE how important it was that I do further ADHD research. My husband really is interested in learning about things, but he can't focus long enough to sit and do all the reading through stuff it takes to figure out the good information... he reads really slow, though he has great comprehension and retention, more than me. Anyway, it's always kind of been my "skill" and "job" to do the research... which I don't mind, but I dropped the ball on this one.)
Anyway, we had been having some issues the past 6-8 months... mostly him pulling completely away and being on the computer and not with me. This was really unusual for us, and I was taking it fairly personally. He just got deployed again unexpectedly for 7 months, and so we've not had the time together in several years to really get back together. So we had a sort-of fight on the phone and he was just being a bit cruel, or really just impatient and un-understanding of my feelings, so I thought we should take a little "talking" break so that I could figure out what the heck was going on with me because dealing with our stuff while I'm upset is not helpful or useful right now.
So after a couple of days of self-pity, I hopped on the internet and started researching away. I'm so happy I did. Reading about how ADHD can come out in so many different ways REALLY helped me to get some perspective and useful information. In fact, so far I'm feeling like he must have been busting his ass the whole time we've been together because he's been responsible (bills and such), on time for things for the most part, and trying to be supportive and close with me (and I'm starting to see how much work that has been for him and why, maybe, he overloaded). Anyway, for me it was a great perspective. I bought Melissa's book on ADHD and marriage which should come tomorrow, and give me some food for thought for the weekend.
Anyway, a couple of issues coming up... his daughter is supposed to come down to live with us in September. Her household is really ... not conducive to a healthy childhood... and so I'm hoping we can get her some good therapy and adjust her medications and maybe be a more understanding environment for what she's dealing with. I've spoken to my husband about possible books on ADHD and kids... and am looking for any recommendations you have for an overview for us, and an overview for her. Maybe something from the perspective of someone with ADHD who can describe how it affects them and what they try to do behaviorally to adjust for it. In fact, I'd like that book for my husband as well. My thought is that if he understands that all this stuff that he does and doesn't understand comes from somewhere that it may (hopefully) help him see it's not a defect, it's how he works differently, and that's okay.
And to finish it all off... I'm in graduate school to become a counselor (marriage and family therapist), so maybe, hopefully, anything I can learn about this issue can help me in my future career.
Thank you all for reading (if you got that far, apparently I lied about the length!)