Pregnant and having trouble dealing with ADHD partner: Im so overwhelmed

I am almost three months pregnant and my DH has no shown any interest in me or this pregnancy, unless he wants to have sex that is. I do all the housework, I take care of the dog, I cook (or he doesnt eat) , and I do ALL of the household shopping. He goes to work and comes home to the computer (we have netflix). I was at my breaking point before I found out I was pregnant and thinking of separation. The unexpected pregnancy has thrown a wrench in my "get away". Im so unhappy with him, and our relationship. He just recently started taking non-stimulant medication for his ADHD. He has every symptom to the highest degree, and then some. He lies ALOT, he has defensive outbursts, that get physical not with me yet but the walls and doors of our home. I just dont want to live this way and cant bring a child into such a unstable environment. I have tried everything I know how to bare with him and his "treatment" aka medication. I feel like counseling is necessary to help him deal with his emotions and daily life. I have to remind him to shower and brush his teeth almost weekly for a shower, daily for the teeth. Im not attracted to him I cant sit in the same room with him for more than ten minutes, listening to him talk is exhausting and repetitive, also I cant tell anymore when he is lying or telling the truth. Are ADHD men prone to fabrication? Some sites say yes. I dont know what to do. I cant handle the lying, everything else I thought would get better with the meds and possible counseling. It feels like I am married to an underdeveloped 17 year old. Is there any alternative to divorce at this point? Im at the end of my rope. 

for yourself

Hi there Lotus,

I am sorry you are facing such anxiety while pregnant. I must sound like a broken record on these boards, but the load you are carrying in your mind is huge--can you start by finding counseling for yourself? Do you have close friends or family you can confide in? It is one thing to get your DH to go, but another to be able to go for yourself and sort things out. It  may even help you work out ways to talk to him and address your situation. 

And to answer your question, the anecdotal evidence I have from here and my own experience is that yes, some people with ADHD have trouble with lying. I think my own STBX actually believed some of the things he was saying, or had a selective memory. He also was pretty entrenched in deflecting, and would do just about anything to avoid being "blamed" for things, including exaggerate or outright lie at times. That is a tough one, although I would imagine that recognizing that one is doing it is a start. 

Having a child is the most miraculous, amazing thing in the world but it is challenging when there are cracks in your marriage. I hope that you can get to a better place. Have you read Melissa's book? It opened my eyes and really spelled out what needs to happen (that both partners need to bring things to the table to work them out). Best of luck to you and hang in there. 

In Process


Thank you so much for your kind and thoughtful reply to my post. I have looked into seeing someone for myself, but haven't found anyone that works for me (on my insurance). I think it would be helpful, if not eye opening. I have friends and family that I can talk to about almost anything, however they all love and care for my dh very much and don't give much support to this problem. They don't live here, they don't see the reoccurring bull**** that I have to manage daily with him. They tend to tell me I am constantly over reacting or not paying any attention to his good qualities. It's not healthy for me to vent and then get lectured by my loved ones on something they cant empathize with. He also deflects, EVERY conversation we try to have ends up in dramatization, deflection, and defensiveness. I get blamed for his negative reactions to the conversation. He actually stated last night "if this medicine doesn't work it will be your fault, for not being there for me the right way". What he meant was: I'm not really trying and when I fail I will blame it on you. So I should continue to be his surrogate mother in order to "allow" him to be productive in our lives? Its past aggravation. I'm miserable. My heart hurts for all these woman including you who have and continue to feel this sort of loneliness, and desperation. However the fact that I am not alone does help. I plan on getting her book as soon as I have some spare cash, times are hard right now, and dh is looking at toys. Thanks again for taking the time to respond to me, and the luck, I need it. 

Kindest Regards,


Wow. You're a very special

Wow. You're a very special person to be able to get pregnant with a man who only showers weekly. I don't think I could do it. :-)

Honestly, I am not a proponent of bringing children into a marriage when one of the spouses has ADHD. It's just adding fuel to the flames if there are un-addressed problems. Adding a child just adds stress.

But it sounds (to me) that the pregnancy was unplanned if you were intending to leave. If you were, what's stopping you now? You are going to be a single mother anyway. Would you rather be a single mother with him and the stress that he brings, or a single mother on your own which brings a new kind of stress? If he is acting out in his rage, then you shouldn't bring a child into that. I have refused to do so while my hubby has acted out in similar ways.

My advice to you is to separate. It may be what he needs to kick him out of his funk, or he may fall further down the rope. Make sure you are prepared for either reaction if you follow through. Certainly seek counseling in the mean time.


That's a tough thing to say

You're not a proponent of bring children into a marriage when one of the spouses has ADHD? I'm not sure why you would say that to her when she already is expecting a baby... 

I wish I didn't take that personally, but I do.

 I have ADHD and two gorgeous children...   Does it add to my stress and to marital stress? yes! But show me any family with small children and you will see tired parents doing their best (hopefully) and some added stress... Along with incredible JOY and PURPOSE. 

I am sick of coming here to read and see what else I can work on and then reading Blanket statements about people with adhd. ADHD is a spectrum disorder and everyone with ADHD has different symptoms to contend with. I am not perfect, but I take my meds, attend regular therapy sessions, exercise, work full time, take almost the full burden of the child-rearing and housework... And do my best to improve the areas I know I need to work on. There are lots of people with ADHD like me. But it seems that the majority of the posters on this site are married to ADHD people who have something else going on- selfishness, laziness, depression... Not sure. But I don't lie, cheat, hurl abuse, do any of the things that seem to be earmarked here as ADHD behaviours. Can we please try to remember that ADHD affects everyone differently and is not equivalent to a damaged character?

having a spouse with ADHD is not a bar to having a happy life, marriage, family... The real question is whether your spouse has character, integrity and a desire to work on problem areas.

good luck!


Smiling again, I didn't mean

Smiling again, I didn't mean to offend. Perhaps I should have said that I'm not sold on the idea of having children with my ADHD spouse. I have no doubt that he would be a good father, but I have concerns that he wouldn't be involved in the day-to-day management of the child. I fear becoming a single parent, essentially. And to be honest, I don't want kids that badly. As he continues to get his life back on track, I have been re-considering the notion though I'm still not sure if I really do want kids at all. I'm not to the point where I view them as bringing joy and purpose to my life. I have purpose without kids, each his own.

It sounds like you do a good job of controlling your ADHD. You have to remember that many of the spouses on here do not, so that would account for the blanket statements and constant "you need to do betters". But we can all do better at being more specific and I should have been. I probably shouldn't have commented on a post involving a pregnancy to begin given my current state of mind. My apologies once more.


Thanks for your apology/clarification. I see where you are coming from. I also agree with you that not everyone should have kids and that you can live a meaningful, fulfilling life without them. I just meant they added a new purpose.

good luck with your situation. 



I was just thinking the other

I was just thinking the other day how blessed I am to have my 21 yr old ADHD son. He's such a sweet guy. And my thirty-something daughter and grandkids. Were there heartaches? Was it difficult raising them mostly alone? Yup. Would I do it again, knowing what I do now? In a heartbeat. More than half of the children born now are born out of wedlock and raised by a single parent. And lots of kids have challenges. However, I can't think of anything I would rather do with my time.... Just be sure if you do it intentionally -- if not intentionally, oh well! You make the best of things.

My first husband went

My first husband went undiagnosed ADD, my son was diagnosed at 4 with severe AD/HD and it was believed his biological father was too (he died when my son was on 17 months old).  I remarried and my husband has recently been diagnosed and so has our daughter.  I have lived my entire life surrounded by ADD (I also believe my father and brother are both undiagnosed ADD).  

I don't want to scare you, but I do have a lot of experience when it comes to living with ADD.  My husband is in his 40's, my son is almost 18, and my daughter turns 14 next month.  I just posted earlier today that I felt like a babysitter to 3 toddlers.  

I'm not saying medication and therapy won't work, they do help, and every person is different and so is their motivation.  I do hope your child is born healthy and happy and that you significant other tries with all he has to better a better partner and parent.  I can only give you my story.  

My son has been on medications since he was 4, my daughter has been on medication since she was 11.  After my daughter was diagnosed and I believed my husband was ADD too I had all I could stand.  I told him I felt as if I was a single parent of three children and only two would mind me.  So, he finally agreed to seek medical attention and was diagnosed with ADD and has been on medication.  Medication can help.  I've only been able to get them to do that and most of the time if I don't remind them to take their meds they don't take them. 

If you think you are overworked now you will soon know what I mean after you have your child when I said a single mother of three.  If you significant other does nothing more than he does now you will know exactly what I mean.  I hope he does, for you and the baby, get the help he needs.  

I'm not advocating divorce/separation.  I'm very positive and forgiving person, and have given more chances than I probably should have to both husbands.  And I don't know if I could honestly say if I could go back and do it over again I would do anything differently.  I would have liked to have had more education on this and could have spared a lot hurt and exhaustion earlier, maybe it would have. All I can say is I wouldn't fault you at all if you left and would dare anyone to judge you.  Might not be the best thing to tell someone while they are pregnant and emotions and thoughts are all jumbled, but I do wish you well.

This is the end beautiful friend.....the end.

My last attempt : I agree, it isnt the sweetest, that phase of communication has past. 


Good Morning
1) Brush your teeth
2) Grab something to eat
3) Get dressed for work
4) Go to work:
5) Come home:
6) Take a shower
7) Pick up things in the living room that belong to you and put them away where they go.
8) Check to see if there is any laundry that needs flipped or folded
9) Look to see if there is enough room in the sink for me to cook for US.
10) Relax…Try this for 2 weeks and see how it works if it does than we can add more ‘adult’ activities to the list. (Like pay bills, take out the trash, communicate with pregnant gf without deflecting my emotional  problems, and blaming her for my problems, and lying in order to not make her angry). ---

What you have done (most days) recently.
1) Forget or don’t see it as important to brush your already falling apart teeth.
2) Rarely eat unless the meal is given to you or cooked for you (bought at the grocery for you ect)
3) Get dressed for work
4) Go to work:
5) Come home:
6) More rare everyday: Seeing you picking up or doing something in the household thats productive, and take shower before pjs go on and veg’ing starts.
7) Go to your room or sit in the living room until dark (and stay in the dark) on the computer until bed @ 8 or 9. Rarely later than that. –

Three main problems I can’t help you with: Will be the end if you cant get yourself under control, as things stand I cant trust you with an infant. I don’t trust you. That isn’t my job to fix, its yours. You figure it out.

2) DEFENCIVENESS/DEFLECTING (BLAMING ME FOR YOUR  SELF ESTEEM-“ITS CALLED your SELF ESTEEM” ) Changing the subject and not communicating on an Adult level.
3) RESPONSE/REACTION IS NOT = TO SITUATION aka DRAMATIZING, AND OVER REACTING  (EMOTIONAL BEHAVIOR) Fake crying, hitting walls and other inadament objects, taking my belongings for whatever reason, waving your hand in my face and getting physical with me in any way; to name a few and most recent.

I will no longer tolerate this sort of behavior. I will no longer mother you. To me you are no longer my partner; I haven’t seen you that way in a long time. You have a severe disability accompanied with hysterical depression and lack of confidence. Im not attracted to you anymore, I don’t know that I will ever be again. I don’t know where to go from here. I am looking for another job, with more hours. Until then I am stuck here, unhappy, uncomfortable, and pregnant with 50% of your responsibility.  Contact: Shelby, Life coach; 681-0958 or Holly 681-1823 or last choice Giles  270-681-3946 ------Shelby seems to be the best for your situation, and if you want me to sit in. The office accepts blue cross. I am checking out. I cant keep going through this sort of stress. I suggest you print this out and take care of the list daily they are joint household responsibilities and basic adult level hygiene. No more no less.  As far as the emotional behavior problems you no longer have the choice to work on a live ginny pig. But you will have time to think about it, I suggest doing so. Feel free to ask me about joint bill questions and money issues  but as far as this ‘relationship’ goes I don’t want to talk to you about me you or us. I am telling you now I WILL NOT respond or react to your outburst on those subjects. This is my last attempt at telling you what my issues with this relationship are, if you can not make progress, Im sorry I can not/will not be a part of your further destruction of our happiness.
Today You:
1) Woke up got dressed for work
2) Left for work (didn’t brush teeth)
3) Went to work:
4) Came home:
5) Got on computer (Im assuming because nothing was done to the house)
6) Acted like you would help with bill pay and "the what not to pay this week" ( helped carry in 2 bags of light grocery bags the first or second time in ** weeks….almost ** (Do you even know how many weeks pregnant I am?!!?
7) Got mad at me for tossing the envelope with receipts to you.
8) Exaggerated the situation and escalated it.
9) Became physical with your pregnant gf (selfish) no emotional restraints.
10) Forced me to leave my home, because you cant handle yourself, then went to bed.


did he see this? bc it is clear and to the point... I hope you have family and a place to go... Stress is not good for the baby... Can you take a few days away? or more?  People don't know what they have until they loose it.


I have tried to take a few days away, and no not sure where I am going to go. Out of state may be the only option. Are you meaning that he wont realize what he has lost until its gone?

I think

I think what she may mean, or what I think, is that you need to take care of yourself. I am not an advocate for separation or divorce as an easy solution, but I have to ask also--if you were going to leave, then found out you were pregnant, what made you stay? Please consider that if nothing changes, having a child is not going to make anything better; in fact, it is going to make everything much harder and more stressful. Imagine continuing the patterns you have going right now with a small child in the house. 

Here's the rub. You only have so much control over what your spouse does and no control over whether or not he is ever able to deal with his issues. You have figured out that the current situation is not acceptable to you and is actually damaging your health and psyche. It sounds as if he could benefit from treatment and what you describe sounds an awful lot like serious depression or ADHD. But you can't make him "get it" or find the wherewithal or desire to fix it. Loving you and his family is great motivation but in the end, he has to want to do it for himself. Maybe leaving would be a trigger but you can't count on it or rely on it to inspire a reaction. My therapist was great--she continually asked me to figure out what I had control over and what I didn't, and whether I could accept what I didn't have control over. 


Best of luck to you. 


Yes..I meant that