This has been such an Odyssey trying to figure out...."who am I with "....that I wanted to make a quick post and say what I've found out and how I see my wife now compared to before I came home from my personal journey here.
I do think my wife is ADHD. Even though her mother was Bi-polar, I'm thinking less about that now. The symptoms just are lining up right and I've felt for a long time that are "so much the same in many ways." LOL That might be an understatement.
But less to do with any diagnosis and more important our relationship together....I'm going with my T on this one....Attachment styles is where it's at. (excuse the dangling participle ...I think that's what it called? lol )
As my T clued me quite some time ago....my wife has a dissmissive/avoidant - fearful/avoidant style which is as I see it....is really the most concerning part of our relationship. She can so cold, distrusting, hard to get close to and not very empathetic especially when you have a problem. They say they're the most apt to be critical and intolerant of their partners flaws, rigid in the ability to be flexible (non existent or just barely at times) see things in idealized ways, suspicious of others, but almost the most disturbing thing for me...is the hypocrisy in their thinking about things.
As it is described...the have the highest positive view of themselves and the lowest view of others yet...they have extremely fragile egos and very defensive of anything that looks like or even smells like and hint of criticism towards themselves...but yet, are the most critical of others and intolerant of others flaws? errrrrrr!!! I'm letting go of that too,
This is something...that drives me nuts sometimes!!!! My wife is no exception.
As a former anxious-preoccupied who are most likely to see themselves as flawed and see others more positively...no wonder at the very least...I had/have the ability to make friends easily. I learned a long time ago despite this challenge....tha I like people...and sometimes people like me as long I keep my ADHD symptoms in control which before I knew I had ADHD....was the key motivation to do something about it.
From the old me...to the new me (more secure and pretty solid most of the time)...insecurity was the thing that drives people away so I worked on that early and got use to rejection. At the very least in a positive way....I was always self motivated to improve any way I can so I could get friends and keep them as long as kept at it. And here I am doing the same thing but now with a caveat I've learned through all of this.
The new challenge now...in keeping in line with everything I've said. I want to keep working on our relationship...but on my end... not quite as hard. My wifes tendencies as they are will make her: reject more, distance herself more, withdraw more, manipulate and try and control more, and use any means she can to gain attention to herself....without considering me into the equation.
She can be cold as ice and completely uncaring or indifferent with an attitude that says....I'm better than you...but feeling less than inside. The irony is ridiculous. On one hand...she needs to feel superior....but on the other hand she doesn't feel superior. On one hand...she takes offense easily....but is mostly offensive outwardly to others. On one hand...she's needy and clingy and very demanding....but hates that in others and especially men n anything from her. ( the worst aspect of our relationship are these imbalances )
I'm not needy or clingy...but I'm also not very demanding sometimes to my own determent. She wants what she wants....but not very willing to earn it or work for it and kind of expects without giving much in return in the from of the "thing" she wants most. Attention. She wants it...but as far as attention goes....she wants all of it sometimes. That's when she gets manipulative and controlling to make sure she'll get it.
On top of this...she has some other co-morbid features to go along with this group of traits in the form of OCD,as well... which sounds like a nightmare to deal with and not very promising.
But as I thought this over and reflected on this a while....I really think it's important to look at the most important aspect all said and done.
We're all human, and we all share that in common. We all have needs...and some are a little harder to deal with than others.
The list of things I'm going to keep in mind with my wife now I know who I'm with...
Conflict: To avoid conflict....I will need not to try and compete with her on any of the things I mentioned that fall into special needs for an avoidant personality. She really is the one competing and if I don't compete and give her what she wants...mostly, this works out fine.
The problems come...when I want what I want. She is not very responsive and kind of intolerant in meeting my needs and mostly disinterested and indifferent.
This makes for an interesting gender comparison here. Mostly....men find it difficult when a woman gets into their business too much and want to be involved in everything their husbands do. With my wife sometimes...she only cares what I do if it effects her in some way? If she gets what she wants...she could care less what I do? Caring is problematic in general but theres something odd in how this works for me. As a man...I want that space to pursue things of interest and I really don't like it when someone is too interested in getting involved in my "things". Somehow...this kind of works and we don't conflict as long as meet those guidelines?
What I am learning better how to do which is the real problem it seems...is to set boundaries with her. She does not like boundaries or restriction on her....but could care less if I have any which makes that impossible to live with sometimes.
But the thing is....I'm pretty independent and mostly pretty confident ( not as much arrogant but just sure of myself mostly ) Enough to take some hits and be flexible...and I have that going for me. I can be alone during her withdrawals and be just fine. I can also live with some rejection as long as it doesn't interfere with what I need to do. This is the biggest problem to date and that....I'm working on with her.
What this has forced me to do in reality....is to do the things that I'm inherently weak or not very good in doing which by itself...is a positive goal to work on.
As I'm finishing this and thinking about what I need to get some skills in doing in order to work with her and myself at the same time?
Speak directly and forcibly in as few words as possible. She hates to be told anything...but she's going to have to get over that part. Asking doesn't work with her.....telling (bluntly as she does with me) "I'm doing this...and not leaving a lot of room for negotiation." lol
She is a my way or he highway kind of person....but two can play at the game to equal it out. That may sound like bad advise to some but with our situation...and with Einstein's Special Relativity going on....this is unique situation....and the mother of invention is need...and creatively is the answer.
That...I have gobs of and some left over. lol
As I said so long ago when my intuition was telling me something.....
"Nice shoot'in soldier....but two can play at that game"
The defense rests ;)