My husband has not been diagnosed. We have been struggling for years, I have walked away, and told him that he needs to figure things out for himself.
He suggested that we go to counselling together. He had an appointment with the counsellor before our meeting and she hinted that he could be ADHD. He has since done a lot of online research, and has made an appointment with the family doctor. He has taken the online surveys, and has self-diagnosed that he is ADD/ADHD.
In my research, I stumbled onto this website, and found Melissa's blog. It seemed like something coming directly from my own head. I have felt like a single parent, like I am holding our marriage on our own, and I have reached burn-out. Others have commented on his behaviour, but no one ever thought of it being this. I have been with him for 16 years, and married for 10. I am just so tired of doing it all alone.
I have asked him to talk to the doctor, and start treatment, and then, maybe after some time, we could reconcile. My concern, and I don't want to be mean, is that he may have read so much on the internet that he could convince the doctor that he is ADD/ADHD even if he isn't.
diagnosis should be by qualified specialist.
Submitted by arwen on
ADD/ADHD can sometimes be misdiagnosed when there is actually some other problem. And vice versa. Especially by someone who is not a qualified specialist.
My husband was diagnosed with ADD after 20 years of marriage (his family's peculiar variety is hormone-related -- he had big problems as a child, "grew out" of it during puberty, then many years later "grew in" to it again as his hormone levels decreased with age -- so he did not exhibit symptoms and I knew nothing of this when we married). We originally went to a behavioral psychologist, who wisely said he could not make a diagnosis himself but did think that there was definitely something not normal about my husband's behavior, so he referred us to a neuro-psychiatrist for diagnosis. This is because ADD, and many other conditions with similar manifestations, are neurological disorders as well as having behavioral aspects.
The neuro-psychiatrist administered a series of tests to my husband, and determined that he did indeed have a pretty classic case of ADD. The tests were varied in purpose and nature, and there was no issue of anybody "convincing" the doctor of anything one way or another (my husband didn't believe he had ADD, I did). I don't think you need to be concerned on this score, if your husband sees a specialist who is qualified to make a proper diagnosis.
I feel your frustration keenly, I have been through the same gamut of experiences and emotions myself. If your spouse is diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, your spouse will probably need medications which can help with (but not cure) the neurological situation, and a counselor to help him change his behaviors over time. If you decide to work with him, you may need some counseling as well. Joint counseling can also have a place in this process. It can be a lot of work, it is typically not easy, but it can also be fruitful and worthwhile. I have to honestly say that if I'd known back then how challenging it would be, I probably would not have stayed with my husband, but at the time I didn't feel I had a choice. On the other hand, my husband and I have been married now for almost 35 years, and although we have had our ups and downs, including being separated for almost a year, we have come a long way in the past 15 years.