I am grateful for this forum and this site. It is helping me to learn about ADD, which I was totally ignorant about until I started dating a man with ADD (he told me on the first date). We have been dating (exclusive to one another) for a few months now. We come to this relationship late in life with our own respective baggage. In sum, I have abandonment and attachment issues stemming from abuse in my childhood, and he was exposed to severe childhood trauma as well. We recognize the most wonderful attributes in the other, and became quite close very early on in the relationship. We respect the strength shown in the other as we each faced our own childhood difficulties.
We are both on medication, and I see a counselor regularly. He does not engage in counseling. Our situation is further complicated by the fact that we live over a thousand miles apart. He appears to have a good relationship with his children, but no close friends in the same city. We both have been married previously and are now divorced.
Most of the aspects of ADD mentioned on this site appear to be present at some level, but the characteristics of ADD behavior that bother me the most are his sudden and extreme anger, his continual placing of blame on me for this anger, and his unwillingness to accept any responsibility for our relationship issues, or even discuss them. In many ways he is emotionally sensitive, and expresses a desire for deep human connection, as do I. We admire each other's intellect and humanity, and enjoy our physicality. On the other hand, somehow, we seem to be uniquely capable of causing each other deep pain.
I would like to hear from both ADD men, and women with ADD partners, with their thoughts about whether or not I should continue this relationship, and in particular if I should bring up my boyfriend's ADD as a serious threat to it. My perspective is that when I try to raise subjects around our relationship, he becomes immediately angry, blaming, says or writes very hurtful things, and then distances himself from me. His volatile anger is nearly always said to be my fault, because he finds my behavior to be outrageous and says that he cannot allow himself to be treated that way by me. Something about our interaction is clearly painful or frightening to him. He fends off talking about any difficult moments, by saying that it simply isn't worth the effort.
To my memory, I have never been critical of his forgetfulness, or difficulty in managing time or tasks. I have, however, chased after him when he preferred to be alone, and mentioned that his driving habits and anger sometimes frighten me. I have also indicated that I do not like being interrupted so often, and that I feel as though he cuts me off before I have a chance to explain myself. He would probably say that I assume what he is thinking without asking him directly, and that I take too long to say anything. And I certainly can be stubborn. So far, I have not brought up his ADD at all, but after doing my research on this site and others, it is clear to me that ADD is playing a large negative role in our relationship.
At the moment, we are speaking very little to one another. What is your advice, dear forum? Should I let this relationship slip into the past or should I bring up ADD as a major issue working against us? If the latter, how do I bring it up? I am fearful that he will react angrily and dismissively. Or, do you have other suggestions to make?
I am at wits end, and open to all your thoughts and advice.