***THE SLUG BOX*** THREAD drop off your slugs here

Some days we just are too tired to get into heavy discussion. This can be a way to just put out a one-liner when too tired of having or dealing with ADD/ADHD. Especially those days when the isolation of our thoughts need to let it go. Not really a discussion thread, just dropping in and dropping off a slug or two and feeling better after it's gone.


Here goes:

I wish ADD/ADHD would just go to hell and die there.

<admin: note this thread is now closed to commenting, at the request of the post author.  She requested that all new comments be posted on a continuation "thread" found here.>



I'm very tired.

I'm very tired.




HUGS to you

I am in the same exact situation.  I feel I will never, ever have a normal life, and I just don't know where to turn.  I wish you peace.

Thank you!

Thank you for your comment.  I really appreciated it tonight.  I have read your posts and feel a connection.  It's Friday night, which should be a fun time to relax with spouse and kids, but I, like many others who have had their marriage devastated by (undiagnosed) ADD, sit alone.  My husband left almost 4 years ago after 25 years of marriage but the pain is still so strong every single day.  The thing that I struggle with the most is the fact that I spent that many unhappy years with someone who would in the end walk out of the house one morning under the disguise of taking a job out of town and not say a word to me or our grown children about his true plans to basically severe most all ties (a discovered affair came two weeks later).  He barely has a relationship with them.  What kind of a person does that?!  What kind of effect will that have on our son and daughter as they grow older?  And I gave years of my life to him for what I now feel was a complete shame after looking back at the red flags that I was too blind to see when I was in the marriage.  How does one ever truly recover from that?  I know I am at least better off without him even if that is being so lonely because when he came home a few months ago to discuss some divorce agreements, the same crazy, rude behavior was still there.  I believe you are still married?  From my experience, it is never going to be easy to walk from a marriage, but I do feel as we get older, we must realize that things absolutely will not change after so many years and if there is any hope of us having a few happy years whether that means being alone or meeting someone else we must find a way.  This ADD in some people will drive us absolutely nuts and we deserve to not have someone telling us to calm down or that our feelings aren't to be acknowledged.  Are you working?  If not, I would say somehow find a way to do something for yourself (ie work, volunteer, etc) to little by little get yourself back from what you have lost over the years.  Please send an update on your situation.  Thank you again for your post.  It's just got to get better at some point if we do what we have to and make some changes no matter how difficult/painful they may be. 

After 5 months of separation...

... my husband had gone through $4,000 of my money ($2500 gift from me, plus additional $1500 he took from my debit account before I could finish separating our finances), and racked up another $4K+ in credit card debt.  He's making about $1,000/month at his part time job, and living with his manager and some work "friends" for $200/month rent.  I'm still paying the cell phone bill, covering vehicle insurance and car payments, and covering his medical/dental insurance.  The first time I saw him after we separated, he had spent hundred of dollars on vaping supplies and had a new Fitbit.  He saw these purchases as justified and necessary - even though he still buys cigarettes and hasn't actually been working out. 

His parents don't blame me for the breakup.  His ex-wife is more comfortable with sending my stepdaughter to visit me than to stay with him.

I'm worried he'll be broke and in debt forever, that he'll lose his relationship with his daughter, that no one will see an underemployed 40-year old living with 6 roommates as good husband material, and that he'll end up alone and unhappy.  I see him like a sweet, poorly-trained puppy - he's well-meaning and just wants to be loved more than anything, and he has no comprehension of how destructive he's being.  My heart bleeds for him, because I know he doesn't want to be the way he is, but I can't be responsible for him anymore. 

A week or two after I left,

A week or two after I left, mine bought a brand new motorcycle for his birthday and never told me. He hasn't ridden it since he moved back with me and the weather here is mild. He also spends $ on vapor products while still smoking cigs.

I have him living with me so I can better control the money until some debt in both our names is paid off, especially since his income runs out next month. I'm really hoping he'll find and keep a good job, but if not, at least I can watch over the finances untiil the tax $ runs out. Living with him is still hard. 

Time to cut the umbillical cord

I gather he's the ADHD. Be that as it may, it sounds like he's not as innocent as he makes out. You need to look after yourself and your daughter first and foremost. Time to cut the lifeline and let him take responsibility for his own life. 

He may even feel contempt for your unflagging generosity, in which case the relationship will be more mutually respectful if you demonstrate that your good will is not to be taken for granted.

My mother did pretty much everything for me when I was growing up because she believed me utterly incapable (she wanted to continue that dependency after I was married, but that's another story). The point being that an ADHD needs to be challenged in order to shake him out of lethargy. When he knows the weight is entirely on his shoulders he may well collapse at first, but sooner or later he will access that vast reserve of energy and creativity that ADHD's possess.

I suppose the question then is, how would you feel if you found he could get along fine without you? That could be the tough one to confront I'd imagine, but then I'm no psychologist.



I'm new to this forum and I

I'm new to this forum and I can't believe my relief at finding stories like my own. I never married my boyfriend even though we've been together for 15 years. When we started going out he was 30K in debt. He has paid off that by now, but still spends compulsively and cannot seem to accumulate any savings or assets. I am an artist and so my income is a fraction of his, however, I own the house we live in, I am debt-free and have bailed him out financially more times than I can  count. I am very disciplined in my financial management because I have had to be. I am also content to live within my means while he is constantly frustrated by running out of spending money. He spends to relax. His office work (web design) leaves him wired and tired and to relieve that he goes shopping in search of a consumer fix or else he just watches TV. He's so out of shape now I think it's contributing to his bad mood but our relationship is so out of wack that I can't even suggest anything like going outside or not buying something that will sit in the box with all of the other useless stuff he's bought. If I ask him to join me for a walk or to go for a swim, I know he'll have a reason not to, so I even find it exhausting to bring it up anymore.

He has a very sweet and giving personality and has a hard time saying no to anyone but me - especially his clients. This results in people asking him for more work than orignally agreed which he will do, but then he comes home angry and stomps around the house like a cloud of negativity and tension. He rarely helps with cleaning or preparing meals but seems to honestly think he does half of the work. It's quite surreal to hear him insist that he does this work and scary how angry he gets if I even suggest that I am resentful after doing 100% of the drudge work after several weeks.

I do think he has ADD but I also can't help but think that his Mom taking care of everything when he was growing up and being the son of a doctor means that he has expectations that his life should be just like when his Mom did all of the domestic work and his Dad covered all expenses.

I am beyond exhausted and depressed by this situation. I am not longer at all sure that there is any hope for a supportive partnership and I am quite sad about that. I am also afraid of being alone. I am in my 50s and feel too old to be starting with someone new, and the idea of being entirely alone also leaves me very very sad.


Reason is missing. That's it in a nutshell. All the books, all the reading, it comes down to reason, and lack of reason and the difference in perspectives that follow. I reason. I consider life through a cognitive lens that allows a somewhat situational analysis of each experience. That contextualization is missing in my adhd wife. Each experience for her is processed through the same filter (aka coping mechanism or algorithm) regardless of context. The result is an approach to life and behaviors that are much more instinctual than rational. The defensiveness, the grasping of anything possible (no matter how hypocritical or inconsistent) that can be used to defend-deflect-deny will be used in a ravenous offensive to protect the self-deception that she is ok, it is me that is the problem. I am here reading, trying to make sense of this difference in perspective. She is sleeping. Blissful in her ignorance and animalistic self assuredness. Fuck this.


"The defensiveness, the grasping of anything possible (no matter how hypocritical or inconsistent) that can be used to defend-deflect-deny will be used in a ravenous offensive to protect the self-deception that she is ok."

This was said well and helps to understand and not to take what they are doing personally.

These attributes do not make for a good partner relationship.

Thanks for the reply. You are

Thanks for the reply. You are absolutely correct about the partnership. It would be much easier to accept the lack of reason if it was not accompanied by the absurd defensiveness. It is almost like the irrationality and fog of Adhd is somehow a comfort, a safe place for her. A pseudo reality where she is not required to reason, her actions don't have to make sense, where she is ok, the problem is me and everyone else. That is what she seems to be defending.

Resigned2B's picture


Dear T.,

So many posts here are desperate. Yours is especially sad. It doesn't seem enough to tell you you are not alone. 

I am SO sorry. For today, be gentle to yourself... ;)

The light at the end of the

The light at the end of the ADD tunnel is never going to fully arrive.

I hate that sometimes the

I hate that sometimes the only way I can cope with being married to this guy is to pretend that he's dead, because not breathing is the only excuse I can see for a husband to do absolutely nothing for his wife.

So sad

I haven't been on here in a very long time, and I see your situation hasn't changed either.  HUGS to you as we suffer together.

I vaguely remember what a

I vaguely remember what a typical conversational dynamic between two people is like. It doesn't exist in my reality.

I'm Sad

Why doesn't he care enough to reach out to me? 

It's ironic that my husband

It's ironic that my husband expresses a desire to stay married, despite doing so well at his clear, although unstated, goal of rendering himself irrelevant to me and the relationship.


I live the same sad life.

My identity feels more like

My identity feels more like that of "the wife of an ADD/ADHD spouse". This is nowhere near the identity I wanted to have for myself.

Ironic that you never want to

Ironic that you never want to go on anywhere with us, yet you manage to experience tons of traveling without us. You have so many interesting travel stories, yet none of us exist in your his-stories.


Just once

Just once, I wish when dropping the kids off with you or answering the phone when you call, I didn't have to endure you talking at me without taking a breath about yourself for fifteen straight minutes. If I didn't cut it off, it would go on for hours...

Never once stopping long

Never once stopping long enough to be aware there is a human being on the other end of the line. Never connecting. I hang up disheartened.



I am so sorry, coping. The not connecting sucks but I have started to look for people who are capable of connecting. Sometimes I just put the phone down and walk out of the room, and when I come back, he is still talking, lol. 

Tough when nobody in the

Tough when nobody in the extended family gets what the issues are within the ADD marriage/household. I find myself unable to express (trying to cope) to anyone without some kind of misunderstanding.

Extended family

Yeah, my wife was judged quite harshly for her difficulty coping with me and our ADHD son. Unfortunately you need a very understanding extended family to be able to disclose these things. Otherwise you can't afford to show a moment of weakness.


Feeling invisible for days on end will break your spirit.


sometimes i wish i WAS just invisible so i could be left alone and not have to deal with my 50 y/o CHILD...lost car keys, broken iPhone$$, broken laptop, house falling apart because even i don't care anymore, supporting a grownazz capable man, being the only married female that works (much less supports her husband as well) out of her whole family, fixing a real dinner when i get home after working 12 hours, numerous interruptions at my job, that, by the way, supports us both, for "emergencies" such as he can't find a pen that writes, or to let me know the dog tinkled on the rug, the innumerous excuses as to why that employer/job (dozens) "just wasn't the right one, Baby".....yeah, i could deal really well with being invisible right about now, and for a long time.

I resent being summed up in

I resent being summed up in four letters like some sort of obscenity, How I wish the world would go away and just let me be me.    


I feel embarrassed when I catch myself feeling guilty for wanting a cleaner home or a more attentive husband. Am I being unreasonable or is he "gaslighting" me when he tells me I want too much?

Familiar pattern

It's a familiar pattern. I come from the other side of the fence but I can certainly empathise, having seen first hand how these things affected my wife.

My advice would be to be very specific about what you want. For example, I find it quite irritating when my wife complains that the yard is a mess, when to me the overall effect is quite pleasing. However, when she points out there are weeds left lying on the lawn near where they'd been pulled out, along with rocks tossed there for later collection, then I start to see areas where things could be improved.

When she suggested I could at least open a bottle of wine for Valentine's day a few years ago, again, it gave me something to navigate by.

We're still way short of perfect, but this approach has helped us over a number of crises so far in our 20 years of marriage.



I filed for a separation two

I filed for a separation two months ago and told my husband the next day.  Not once since then has he expressed an opinion as to whether he wants to stay married.


If you were interested in his point of view I must say I'm surprised you didn't inform him of your intentions first, unless it was an abusive relationship.

I wish I had a dollar for each time my wife has announced she was going to leave me. Sometimes there seems no more point in fighting either about or for the relationship. I accepted long ago she may well leave at some point. In the mean time we survive - sometimes even going for weeks on end enjoying each other's company.

I guess you have to face death in order to really appreciate life.


I talked about my discontent

I talked about my discontent many times.  He did not respond.

Emotional intimacy does not

Emotional intimacy does not need to include details about how it felt to have a colonoscopy done.


Agreed, and I imagine, for our ADHD partner/spouse that want the same thing, but feel as helpless as we do. Even stranger, they seem completely oblivious to how their every decision, action and behavior impacts our marriage. As fate would have it, I started reading Melissa's book last night, and this morning, we had one of the biggest blow-outs we've had in our 20+ marriage. My wife was diagnosed about 10 years ago and since that time she's slipped in and out of treatment, both with medication and behavioral methods. If I'm honest, I haven't been a big help in this department and always wonder how life might be today if I had done more earlier on. Probably not a question worth ruminating on. Anyway, back to this morning's blow-up and no one will be surprised to hear that I've been trying to finish-up a remodeling project that should have taken no more than a couple of years, in the end, consumed eight years of our marriage and life, living in 5 to 6 different places, etc., etc. Why did it take so long, because my dear wife who is severe ADHD, and an artist my training, thought she could not only design the space which she did, but firmly believed she could general contract the job herself. Well, needless to say, and foolish me for letting her try at the very beginning, its turned out to be a huge disaster from a "process" perspective. It's a truly beautiful space, but it took us over eight years to actually get back in the house. One of her biggest complaints was why I wasn't actively involved in the process, but every time I tried to get involved, I was told that she knew what needed to get done, and without words, that I should stay out of it. I'm not sure if it's because of the ADHD, but she feels she needs to control absolutely everything. I've always said to her, both seriously and jokingly, "that she wants to do everything herself, but nothing every ends up getting done." In the end, it's was me who had to step, intervene with the County, put a process in place, just to see the project to completion. Anyway, the remodel is only the tip of the iceberg. This is my first post, and glad to now be connected to a community that experiences what I do every and realizes how incredibly complex and frustrating this is on a 24/7 basis.  I also look forward to finishing Melissa's book and to begin putting into practice some of the techniques she discusses.  Bye for now! 

Amen is right!

Thank you Timnotnow! We have a lot in common: married 20 years (we're in our 20th now), I'm in business with my ADHD wife, it's a disaster.  The totality of all these years of inconsistency and disappointment have finally taken their financial toll and despite my 30 years of professional work I have had to declare a personal bankruptcy.  I am now trying to re-build my way out of it and all the controlling, impulsive, manipulative behavior is still there and I am scared for a fresh financial start being ruined right from the starting gate. She has already started taking liberties with business commitments that I know I will have to clean up (in fact I spent today doing exactly that).  I am also clear that stopping her even setting boundaries will degenerate into fights and screaming matches.  We almost got divorced just before the bankruptcy declaration.  The only thing that gave me pause was how messed up our 16-year-old son seemed to be while we were screaming and yelling and while she was (manipulatively) yelling about divorce in front of him.  I can see now that it was just using our son to make me acquiesce, which I like a fool ultimately did do. My son is on the honor roll now and having a great year while I, once again, try to make it all work.  I feel trapped.  She creates a mess that drains time away from doing actual business.  She sets up "meetings" and commits my time to others to attempt to control me, all of which gets in the way of actually doing any real work, and refusal to participate means meltdowns and threats that destabilize the family.

I'm new to this forum.  I thought I was the only guy in a situation like this.  Thanks again for your post.  I hope there's a way we can both get some help.  I have to get the book.

me too

Wow, Timnotnow, I just saw your post. I am almost divorced now, but also wish I had known more earlier so I would have at least understood what the heck ADHD was. I feel for you-my ex with untreated ADHD did almost the same thing with our house. We had a mid-sized budget to fix up our 1950's ranch house. Talented artist, he insisted on on controlling the process and acting as contractor, which I knew was going to be a disaster but he would not listen to me at all. It also was kind of a beautiful idea, but beyond our means and a huge undertaking while living in it (like knocking down walls and ripping out the floor). I tried to talk him out of if, to no avail. One day I came home and he had punched holes in many of the walls looking at the wiring, and painted the ceiling the worst color I had ever seen. Then he went into it full force and tried to do little bits of every job at the same time and just kept stalling out. And of course every time he made a huge mess, like dust and rubble everywhere, I would have to clean it up because it would sit there if I didn't and we had kids running around. They couldn't be in the house with dust masks on all night!

Ironically, mine complained that I wasn't involved or "helping" as well, but I was also told that he needed to work "his way," and he argued so vehemently against anything I said that I gave up. We spent days, days, days, in kitchen stores and anything I liked was wrong or bad or too expensive (that's what I said in the beginning!)  

Weird to me that someone who has such a hard time starting things, maintaining momentum, and finishing anything, would be such a domineering control freak, plagued with such anxiety about decisions. I also said many times that "nothing ever gets done." It was like this with almost everything and I felt like I had a 200 pound weight wrapped around my legs at all times. I am so glad you finally got yours finished. Ours is still a half-finished disaster years later--no kitchen cabinets, exposed drywall, missing closets, half finished bathrooms, junk everywhere. The money and then some was spent and there is none left for him to finish it up so we can sell it. It put me and my children in a pretty serious financial situation but I am just glad to be out of there. 

ADHD time

I've been awake for four hours, working, making phone calls for the family, and tending to the ailing dog.  My ADHD husband still hasn't come out of the bedroom.  It's almost 11 a.m.

Grrr's picture

I hate being sworn at and

I hate being sworn at and threatened by leaving almost every day of my frustrating angering bs life when I give my heart and soul to him :'(

My husband said that his

My husband said that his withdrawal and detachment from me and his not supporting me or the family resulted from my hostility, and he said that everything I say to him is hostile.  So I've stopped talking.

RRed said ...

Imagine being trapped in a vehicle that is your body and brain and baggage, that this vehicle has been to the 105th floor of the empire state building while evidencing amazing problem solving that seems to have produced the next greatest thing since sliced bread. That this problem solving predicts trends and technology like EBay and Amazon but never follows through on it because an all consuming game of chess is all you seem to be able to generate any focus on for the past six months. Imagine a hundred billion galaxies worth of constellations that you have actually traversed in your minds eye and you have the insatiable urge to share those wild criss-crossed threads with details of species met, why gravity varied your course, and along the way you discovered another phenomena similar to black holes but different. Now you can barely hold the verbal detailed diarrhea back and even though you know you have said the same thing previously you can't help but say it again, like it is a recording that has to play despite the endless repetitiveness you know you are engaging in. Imagine the vehicle you are trapped in literally reacts almost on its own despite your best efforts to figure it out and control it. Imagine the criticism for not being able to tie ones shoes, or remember a doctors appointment for your child when it is critical for their care. Imagine when moving from one room to the next forgetting why we are moving at all. Imagine this vehicle wildly gyrating out of control for months at a time chasing the latest rabbit down yet another rabbit hole and despite our best efforts maybe even years of success avoiding that particular rabbit hole all of a sudden chasing again that same rabbit down the same rabbit hole for no explicable reason other than it is a challenge of some sort even though the outcome is already known. This vehicle you are trapped in dragging you and those you love most on wild beautiful hellish agony thrilled roller coaster ride that most beg to just stop, but you can't, try as you might the inevitable - "I am sorry, I will try to be better" - occurs, if your lucky, over and over, and over, and over again. How much of this insane roller coaster ride can our spouses take? Our families? ADHD persons need to realize the legitimacy of the pain and frustration most normal family members constantly feel. The same can be said to all those normal family members with ADHD persons in their lives. 

I am purposely leaving this note a bit chaotic because this is the amazing but broken mind an ADHD person like myself is stuck with and strained thought patterns it produces.

I humbly submit that we are broken but amazing, that there are going to be better times but not consistently so, that to accept brokenness and limitation with mutual recognition and willingness to commit to acceptance and change where possible is all one can expect or hope for.

For me I shut down when I am boxed and shelved as irrelevant and condescending tones rule the conversation. I don't know the history or baggage but I can guess at the well worn paths and my only suggestion is to try and avoid the easy well worn paths of frustration and anger which is so very easy to write or say but something entirely different in our agonized moments which seem to bleed into an agonized life.

slug box: Never a completely

slug box:

Never a completely good day out together. Something always has to set the ADD/ADHD off to cause conflict and hurt.

slug box:

A rage attack over buying the wrong home improvement item -- honestly? The rage is so disproportionate it's mind-boggling... is this what any other calm, rational human being does behind closed doors too? Or do they simply exchange the item.

I take this slug, get it off my bleeding back, dig a hole and drop it in.... and I move along.... :)




summerrhiannon's picture

Home Improvement

That reminds me of last month when my husband was building an office in our basement.  After the wall was put up, it was time to paint.  He found an old paint can he assumed was the matching color to the rest of the basement walls.  It was dried out, so he went to Lowe's and bought another can.  When we put in on the wall, it was not the right color.  He was so angry because he just wasted $30.  I did what I usually do when this happens.  I tell him to calm down and give me the can of paint.  I took it back to Lowe's with a sample of the correct color.  I told them the color match was wrong.  All they had to do was change the tint.  It wasn't a big deal at all.  

Just so you Know ‏

This is on the Twitter site "Just so you know."
Psychologists suggest, people who are generally "too nice" are also the ones to get hurt the most.

I'm so angry at myself for

I'm so angry at myself for allowing my boundaries and self esteem to get battered and broken. I can see pieces of the strong, independant person I really am, but I am crippled by a codependant relationship and an overwhelming sense of despair and hopelessness.


pick up a copy of "Co-Dependent No More" by Melodie Beatty if you don't have it already.

Melissa, Funny you should say


Funny you should say that! I just downloaded that on my ipad, my counselor recommended it at our last session. :)

I'm running around getting 3

I'm running around getting 3 kids bathed and in bed, you ask if you need to review homework and planners, and I say "yes, probably."  You don't move from your spot on the couch playing with your phone.  45 minutes later I'm reviewing homework and pissed and let you know, and your response is that you didn't *know* I needed help because I didn't hand you a backpack???  Wtf?


How many nights in a row do we put the kids to bed? All 4 kids. I say to the 8 year old and the 10 year old and the 54 year old "Mommy is going in with the babies, and when I come out, I need you big kids to have your teeth brushed, your laundry put away, and your pjs on." 45 minutes later I come out and all 3 of them are lying around in the disgusting mess of a room with laundry all over the floor, watching some YouTube video, no one is brushed, no one has pjs on, and I am totally baffled. It's the same every freaking night! So I say something, and he storms off in a huff - "I know, I just can't do anything right." How hard is it to remind the kids to get their teeth brushed???

Resigned2B's picture

Yes, apparently it IS!

Dear Z.,

The structure you need to provide every minute of every day, for life, is staggering! Only meant for 'super-strength' partners. You remember Gomer Pile in the Marines??? After a while, you begin to feel like his (in your face) sergeant, non-stop...

My experience is that they just don't see their surroundings and if they do? They could care less! One poster here found herself in a similar frustrating position. When she came into the room and realized that nothing had been done per her explicit instructions, she said, probably pretty infatically,   "Okay people, time to dial down the ADHD!!!!" 

My husband has hung his own bath towel up for five days STRAIGHT without me saying a word! This is a new personal best! It took thirty years for him to even care enough to try. We have six kids, two boys have ADHD. Everyone is now an adult. Get the three ADHDers together??? And ALL you can do, after 25 years of charts and stickers and a myriad of incentives, is shake your head and say, dial it down people!!!

Good luck Z... You could make them earn the money to fill their own cavities. Better yet, search term 'tooth decay' and then hit the image tab at the top left. There are such gross pictures of what happens when you don't brush your teeth it might actually scare them enough to WANT to brush at night?!?

slug box:

How can your moods turn on a dime, and release such belligerence at the only one who understands you?

Living with an ADHD wife ...

Sorry. Posting  here requires much More time than it is worth. At the end of the day these "experts" make more money from us not solving  our problems. It perpetuates .


Melissa Not Excited by Comment About Motivations

Hey - I know that this is where you drop off your bad feelings, and you may have been having a bad day, but I want to respond to this as it is an attack on me and my intentions...

First, understand that I made (no exaggeration) almost 4 TIMES more money in my last career.  If I wanted to make money, this is definitely NOT what I would be choosing to do.

Second, the things that I do charge for (my seminars, audiobooks and books), are products into which I have put a significant amount of time and effort.  I do these things because I think that others should benefit from my knowledge and experience and these products help many MORE people reap those benefits.  I started the seminars, for example, because I couldn't take on all the people who wanted to work with me.  The seminar helps me provide personalized advice to more people.  I wrote the book because the website got too many pages on it to be easy to use and understand.  The book clarified my ideas to make them more accessible for people interested in the topic of ADHD and adult relationships.  Regardless of my motivations, however, these products are worthy of at least some compensation simply because they have value to those who purchase them.  They get a good deal.  For about $15 (or a free trip to the library) they can be introduced to ideas they've never thought about before and that can literally turn their lives around.

Also, thus far I have avoided advertising on my website in order to make money off of traffic to the forum because I don't want to muddy the waters with it, and the forum should be about exchanging ideas, not being bombarded by ads.

Others may be motivated by money.  I'm not one of them, however.  Please put aside your cynicism.

I have thanked God for You

I would have been lost without your book and counseling and this website.  I am a person who could hear 50 compliments but be devastated by one criticism.  I know that you are a strong person and that doesn't happen to you.  I just wanted you to know how grateful I am.


thanks for the nice note.  I do a :-( face of sadness when I hear you say how sensitive you are to criticism and want to give you a virtual hug!

Hey Melissa, thanks for the

Hey Melissa, thanks for the reply and calling me out on this. I can certainly understand why you were offended since it was posted on your site. However, my comment was a general observation and was not meant to be directed at you specifically. Please accept my apology. We have had a pretty tough ride with ADHD. I was half asleep when I wrote that, and just burnt out on the entire process. I have read your book (as well as several others) and implemented many of your strategies, particularly recognizing the parent / child dynamic, the symptom /response response issue, and setting boundaries. This has had mixed results at best. The chaos that exists in my wife's head has now expanded to virtually every aspect of our lives and, frankly it drives me nuts. In order to avoid arguments we agreed to have our ADHD discussions via email. The idea was this would allow both of us to have calm, non-threatening, rational discussions about the topic (and perhaps amuse the NSA?). I sent an email to my wife in April kind of outlining how I saw things. As of today I still do not have a reply. We had an argument about that just before I wrote the post above. If you are interested I posted a long winded initial post on here in the April timeframe about my experience. In short my wife's coping system seems to be a sort of algorithm she runs in response to every input or situation. However, this algorithm only serves her. She seems incapable of adding an additional step that would include "how does her decisions/actions impact us". In fact, she seems incapable of even discussing this as a concept. The lack of self awareness is almost like dealing with an animal ( not meant to be derogatory, just the best analogy I could find). Again, I regret that my comment offended you and hope it will not color your opinion of me as we are intending to sign up for your October course.

Oh, wow.

"In short my wife's coping system seems to be a sort of algorithm she runs in response to every input or situation. However, this algorithm only serves her. She seems incapable of adding an additional step that would include "how does her decisions/actions impact us". In fact, she seems incapable of even discussing this as a concept. The lack of self awareness is almost like dealing with an animal ( not meant to be derogatory, just the best analogy I could find)."

This is EXACTLY how I feel about my partner but have had so much trouble putting it into words (I even 'get' what you are saying about the animal part').  Wow.

Grrr's picture

Thank you for the site~!

I am just getting started on your site (barely enough time to but trying!) and I am thankful for every second that I CAN get onto the site. I feel less alone and am still amazed at how many other people are going through the same thing. I vacillate between wanting to walk and committing with my 4 year bf. this site gives me hope. and I can't wait to order your book! ;)

Too Much.

I patiently deal with your crazy-making behavior all day but when you finally push me over the edge and I lose it, you stand there telling me how crazy I am and that I must have PMS and asking me what is wrong with me as if this was the first upsetting thing you've done all day.  It's too much.  It's really just too much.

Blame and negativity

Stop blaming your job for your ruined marriage. YOU ruined your marriage. I had to hear the blame game for the hundredth time because another thankless wife left one of your coworkers. It is possible to balance work AND family and even personal time. I manage it with a smile on my face. 

I still cringe when I think of all the times you said that you only kept that job because you love us so much. Always lamenting about how your unhappiness doesn't matter as long as the bills are paid. I'm not going to personally thank you for doing something that has to be done. Most everyone has to work. Negativity is such a turn off. I HAPPILY work two jobs so that my son and I can have things. I don't go around telling people or my son how lucky he is that I work so hard for him. I work hard for us and I love it! I love my job and the home I just moved into. I live at the beach! I made it happen, but I still feel lucky. I'm so much happier without you!

Slug Box.

At the end of the day, discussing the minutiae of mechanical objects should not be the only thing one talks about after being apart for 12-15 hours a day. It feels like being married to a robot :(


you ask how my day was...

and i watch your eyes glaze over after the first few words and i know you have drifted off and aren't hearing me at all.

I accomplished nothing today...

...but maybe that's because yesterday you took 7 hours to call and tell me you were in the E.R. while I was leaving you messages in two states?  What's the "normal" recovery time for spending an entire day imagining the father of your children is dead? 

Slug Box: Reminder of our

Slug Box: Reminder of our responsibility to ourselves.

We all have to believe that we can make a difference in the quality of our lives by being PROACTIVE AS BEST WE CAN.

After two months of a "non-discussion" to plan our child's birthday celebration.... it is now two weeks before our child's birthday and we have not moved an inch because of ADD dh's paralysis in (un)feeling one way or another.

I went ahead and made the arrangements. He was furious accusing me of putting pressure on him by surprising him with the suddenness of it (???).  But he came around to it an hour or so later.

So, the thing is, I would be willing to put up with rage attacks, blow ups, because his bark is worse than his bite -- he just needs to come around on his own terms and I'll gladly allow for that.

But I MUST BE PROACTIVE or risk losing another day, week, month, year of my life to the ADHD inability to make decisions as it relates to the family experience.

(the next time my favorite performer comes into town, I will go to the event on my own. I missed a great opportunity recently and I felt I could have been proactive there -- I had asked my dh at least half a dozen times and then I gave up)



i'm actually jealous of some of you.....

New to this forum!  I read about some of you who are home with children and whose husband's have successful careers and you struggle with loneliness and his lack of attention to you.  I WISH!

I have the ADHD version of the man who cannot make a living and is just as distracted by inane things as yours.  I am and have been the sole bread winner of our household for our entire marriage.  At the time we got married I never thought too much about that -- he had a job, if not as "big" as mine  -- I figured he would continue to have a job and it would work.    It has not worked.  He "owns his own business" -- but it doesn't make any $.  More like a hobby than a business?   And I wrote the check that started his business and have not seen that $ since.  I also never had children and find myself in middle age so very sad for all the things I dreamed about in my life that have never happened because I married someone with ADHD and didn't know I did.   I wish I had known -- I might have not done it had I known of the difficulties, burdens and how it would impact my life.

I didn't have children because I didn't see how it was possible married to him......oh and you have to have sex to have children.  If you take on the role of "parent" desire is replaced with contempt.  I have been parenting my husband since we got married.  I hate it. 

It's not just that he doesn't make any money.  He is not responsible for ANYTHING in our household -- and the things he does do are things I have nagged him into a corner to do until I am so exhausted and hate myself for all the nagging.  Who is that SHREW?   She is someone I have become.  Who is that ANXIOUS, frightened mess of a woman who is no longer any fun and has let go of everything that ever mattered to her because I am drowning in a sea of lost dreams and hopelessness.  

I'm just saying the grass is always greener.  I DREAM about a distracted man who is a success at work and a house full of children who live with me while I care for them and our household.   At least that seems like some kind of OK deal to me......I know it doesn't feel that way to you.  But to me, it's better than what I've gotten -- NOTHING other than the pleasure of the company of a charming and handsome man child.  It is not enough in a marriage.  Fine for dating.  Not for life partnership.    No children, no financial support, no help with anything big or small......unless I take the lead.   I am responsible for everything and if you want to know what lonely feels like -- well, it feels like hell if you have to worry about every little thing alone and your "partner" (MAN CHILD) has never once considered anything practical in life ever -- not once!  It is beyond my comprehension that he can't see what all this has done to me.  I was once successful, smart, mostly happy and beautiful.  I hate myself now.   We are trying the self course and I will consider counseling as well (more $ I will have to shell out for this issue).  But if it hasn't changed in a year I have to move on.  I won't survive otherwise.

My soul is dead. 

Yes, you're right.  The fact

Yes, you're right.  The fact that I have children makes me feel much better.  But I relate to the job issue.  My husband spent approximately 8 years of our marriage totally unemployed and for the past 3 years, his "job" has been taking care of his elderly parents, which could be a hard job, except that as far as I can tell you, his "work" consists of cooking two meals per day.  At least this takes him out of the house.

I think a year is too long to wait. Give it six months.

for wishiknew

You describe (well) a severely overfunctioning/underfunctioning relationship - and these are never healthy.  I'm not telling you something new here.  But you can help the two of you get out of it by backing away from overfunctioning.  That will seem hard, particularly if you have years of this in your relationsihp.  Grab a copy of Codependent No More by Melodie Beatty and start there.  Another book that might help would be Harriet Lerner's The Dance of Intimacy.  You don't need your husband to be a success at work so much as you need him to work.  Can he afford coaching?  And how are you both measuring his efforts?  Have you both ever set a deadline for making money?  (And if he's not making it by that deadline - say 6 months from now, then no excuses, get out of the house and sling some coffees?)  Seriously...

I know what you mean when you say you hate yourself.  I was in that place, as well.  It's awful.  But YOU are in charge of how your life is going, not him (I KNOW it doesn't feel this way...but it's true.)  Take a look at my chapter on setting boundaries in The ADHD Effect on Marriage and it will take you through some ideas for how to learn to love yourself again...You CAN do this - you do not have continue this way.

With a virtual hug...

The Walk

Life with an ADHD wife has become like an endless walk  in thigh deep snow. The pain of each post hole step is a brutal reminder of the previous one, and  a  harbinger of the next. Pressed even deeper by the weight of responsibility. Exacerbated by watching your partner doing snow angels ... unencumbered. Lying in the courtyard of her snow palace. Surrounded by great gleaming spires. Her creations.  Each brick carefully crafted of her rationalizations, excuses, and self deception.   placed to work with the permanently present locked nature of her mind to shield her from her own absurdity. I gaze at this through eyes tearful from  exhaustion and rage. Perfect misery.

We are instructed to empathize, lest we damage a fragile self-esteem. We are told to recognize and  embrace the neurological differences that exist. We are advised to accept ... the ADHD  brain,  what is, not what could be. Respect who they are.

To this I say. If you  lack self esteem DO SOMETHING TO BUILD IT. I recognize you are different. If you want me to embrace it then  prove it is something positive,  not just something missing. You want acceptance? Then show some empathy.  You want respect? Then earn it through actions. Destroy the temple of bullshit you have built around  your self and  look in the  mirror. I am walking. You can keep up or  freeze. The choice is yours.

No, there are NOT 2 sides to every story

Tfarmer, your description of marriage as a trudge through a blizzard while your ADHD partner makes snow angels has haunted me since I read it.  It gets to the painful core of what many of us spouses are living.  I have to believe that someone with your clarity of vision will eventually find the way to cope that's best for you.  Courage.

I will always be grateful for this site because of the strength it offers; the confirmation that we're not alone and that there actually is some objective standard of reality to apply to the painful and destructive and inexplicable actions of our severely ADHD spouses.  For many, myself included, that's been a vital first step toward setting boundaries, discerning what can and cannot be changed, and refocusing energy on our own lives. 

Not all ADHD is severe.  Some people wear glasses; others are blind.  I applaud all the ADDers who've had a diagnosis early enough in life to learn helpful coping mechanisms; who are motivated and genetically able to take responsibility for their condition.  I pray my two children are among them.

But, Tfarmer, I feel compelled to respond to your post--its pain and the self-affirmation behind writing it.  You deserve more than follow-ups stating that there are two sides to every story.  For those actively able to work on their ADHD, I understand there are two sides to keys getting lost, or an item getting forgotten from the grocery list.  But please don't confuse those  human errors with the true horrors others have suffered.  We who have experienced lawsuits, grand theft, public humiliation, our spouses' firings, draining of our finances, and heart-stopping cruelty out of the blue...and have been left to suck it up and mop it up...we need this space to speak this truth to the only people who can begin to understand.  This is our lifeline some days.

If what we write, sometimes in tears, seems harsh, and you read it here, ADHDer...remember that it's up to you to decide whether your case is as severe as the one being described.  But believe me, there are such cases.  And we who post them are hurting in ways many can't imagine.  Be glad if it doesn't sound like you; use it to further your resolve to take action about your diagnosis.  Our reality is your cautionary tale. 

I love your analogy

Most Excellent! I'm walking!

Thank you!



In the past, when I've

In the past, when I've contemplated whether I even want to be married, I've thought, "If I do, the most likely candidate is my husband, that guy I've known for so many years and with whom I've endured so much."  This morning, I realized that my husband is NOT a candidate for spouse, because of his inability to form and stay in long-term relationships (despite his claiming that he wants intimacy).  What a sad realization.

my ADHD doesnt define me.

I really hate how a lot of people act like your ADHD literally defines you...it's almost as if a lot of people think we're monsters. I accidentally ran into this website while looking for study strategies (go figure lol) and reading a lot of people's posts actually really hurt. I get that it is a site for you people to vent so I know I shouldn't take any of this personally. I'll be honest I'm 22, in college and not married so maybe I don't know what you're going through. However it sucks to see that fast forward 10 years from now, that's what my future husband might potentially be saying about me...OUCH! Anyways I guess I'm allowed to vent too right? so here it is: My ADHD doesn't define me and I am certainly not an animal. It doesn't change the fact that I am a good person. People always focus on your problem but never on how much you improve. I hate how we're always depicted as lazy or selfish assholes when we (or at least a lot of us) work hard everyday to be more like what everyone wants us to be. Although my ADHD mostly affected my grades, I can still somewhat relate to your husbands/wives. A lot of you are in very difficult situations and my heart truly goes out to you. What helps me overcome my problem is that people around me work with me, they don't want to fix me. I made the decision as a teen that I wanted to change things to reach my goals and my entourage supports me and it works (I'm faaaar from being perfect though). I am no therapist but I think that if you constantly remind them of things you can't stand about them, it just makes them even more defensive and then everything goes downhill. At least that's how it was for me for a while. I'm not putting the blame on anyone. I just felt like sharing how I felt after reading a lot of posts on here.

Great Post!!

Hey, thanks for your well considered post! I can tell you from what I have learned about ADHD and my personal experience, there are reasons that you will likely not find your husband on here in the future. The short paragraph you wrote indicates you are already ahead of people in many of the situations discussed on here. I (and I am sure many others) would welcome the opportunity to explore these things and get your ideas and perspective on them. Perhaps you could gain some insights that would be useful as well. Let me know. Thanks!

Thank you and everyone else

Thank you and everyone else for the nice replies, I really appreciate it :-) Sure I would love to give my ideas and perspectives on things if it's alright with you! I was diagnosed when I was 14 and finally managed to find ways to deal with it when I was about 16-17. I took a while for people to realize I was dealing with the condition because I am extremely calm so I was never disruptive or impulsive. I'm the type to think about a zillion things at the same time, I have a hard time focusing for an extended period of time, I tend to say random things that I have nothing to do with the conversation and I'm not naturally organized. Those are all things that I work on every single day...except for maybe for my randomness but so far it doesn't bother people around me. Once you're diagnosed, it feels like you become this nut case that everyone wants to fix. That is the worst feeling in the world....it's like you're losing your identity and you just become that ADHD person.  Then people don't respect your choice to take medication or not and on the other side you have the people who still don't think ADHD is real. Then it makes you feel angry and very defensive cause it feels like the world is against you. I was diagnosed as a teen but I can only imagine how it must be even more difficult to cope with it when you're diagnosed in your 30s or 40s. Changing habits and behavior is not easy, especially if you have been like that for a longer time. I am not putting the blame on anyone or making excuses, I'm just explaining what I felt during those 2-3 years of adjustments and I'm trying to put my self in the shoes of those who have been diagnosed much later. Perhaps that how your spouses are feeling at the moment. I read some very sad stories on this blog...people financially ruined or verbally abused etc. Those are horrible stories but with all due respect, I wonder if such extreme behavior is really ADHD or could there be another underlying issue? ADHD shouldn't be an excuse for theft, or abuse. Also, if your partner has the condition there's a good chance that he/she feels just as horrible as you. Even if I think I'm doing fine, sometimes when I don't reach a goal or when I mess up, I beat myself up a lot inside and I don't let it show. I hope I didn't come off as whiny or insensitive to anyone's struggles, if I did it wasn't my intention. I'd also like to ad that believe it or not ADHD isn't always negative Cheers!

thank you!

Wonderful post!  I agree with you.  My ex has done some really wacky things that have hurt me a lot, but I still know he's an amazing person inside.  Just because he battles ADHD does not mean he is bad or broken.  I tell him that all the time.  Yes - he could be living a much easier life, and unless he steps up and decides to work on some of his behaviors that really do affect his life negatively, he's going to continue to hurt me so right now I have backed away.  But I understand he doesn't do it on purpose and the only person I can change is me.  I'm working really hard to understand ADHD so I can view the rollercoaster as a fun ride and not a horrifying ordeal.  We ALL have deficits and strengths and the key to success is figuring out how to deal with the former and highlight the latter.  You are well on your way, and I'm amazed by your insight and maturity at 22.  You are destined for great things!!


I often feel this way as well. For newcomers to this site, the amount of negative comments far outweighs the amount of positive comments, but I believe that is because many of the individuals that have found happiness with ADHD in their marriage dont come back often to post. This is why I've continued to be active here though I feel that I've made tremendous changes and improvement in my personal life (despite the pending end of my marriage). I've learned to accept ADHD and be proud of the strengths it has given me while mitigating and even completely getting rid of its negative symptoms. I think more ADHD folk need to be posting here to give the non-ADHD folk their perspective, both good and bad. After all, there is always two sides to the story.

Being positive

I came to this site as an ADHD person looking to try and figure things out, and a lot of the post I read were so hard to read.  I realize people are very hurt, but I like reading the posts (ADHD or not) who are optimistic and searching for the answer!  Thanks for this post!


I remember when he was a fool for me. His arms were my shelter from the ugliness of the outside world. I thought love was the strongest force on earth.

Then the poison seeped in. It slowly took its toll for years, sickening me more and more as I tugged on his hand and asked for help. Now I'm on the ground, dying, and gasping for air, and he's just looking down and saying, "Oh, are you ok?"

It's like throwing a life preserver to someone who's already halfway to the bottom of the sea.


Powerful. I know exactly what you are feeling. I often wonder what the hell happened to the strong, Christian man who used to lead our family.

$500 breakfast in bed

The front of the car is bumperless and smashed from your skid off the highway.  I didn't think to ask you, yesterday, if you'd put the snow tires on before leaving on a long drive into a severe weather advisory snowstorm.  This morning, I mention you should put those snow tires on ASAP--but I'm through fighting.  You are going to keep doing stuff like this, and all I can do is not let it give me an ulcer.  My reward?  You remain chipper because I didn't yell at you, and bring me coffee and toast before heading off to work on your never-ending to-do list.  (Goes without saying that you take no responsibility for what happened and act like the skid itself was a video game rush...)  The collision insurance has a $500 deductible.  That means the toast cost $400 and the coffee $100?   I feel so pampered as I chew.

you just described my life as

you just described my life as yesterday ANOTHER cell phone went into the lake, but he "can't put a waterproof case on it because it's too bulky"   ....Really?!   And he is always on an endless to-do list and freaks out at me when I don't keep up with his insanity.  

Marriage? Is this all there is?

If this is the reality the way marriage typically is then I'll accept it. Do couples sit..have chats, conversations? Not just mundane day to day stuff in passing. Just being his TV buddy? Maybe if I just pretend he had a stroke. Yeah, maybe that will help. :(

ADD dad removes bike lock

ADD dad removes bike lock from son's bike because dad has misplaced another lock.

Son rides bike to school, has to rush all the way back when he realizes bike lock is missing upon arrival.

ADD dad: "don't pin this on me"

Yet again... the algorithm for grasping the impact one's actions have on others is completely lost.


So true!  (we are constantly

Wow - you have so succinctly put into words something I've never quite been able to express.  And so true!  (we are constantly cutting off bike locks and buying new ones because my dh always loses the keys...)

Get a combination lock

Save yourself some money and remove the problem.

Can ADHD really be this severe?!?

My husband still not proactive in seeking assistance with ADHD or healthy communication. His moods swing so wildly and extreme that I wonder if it's actually a borderline personality disorder. Bipolar? 

opinion on brains

My opinion after years of this is that brain neurochemistry is a delicate thing, and when it gets in the way of being able to function well or living a productive or healthy life, then it may take science, medication, psychiatry, physiology, psychology, behavior modification therapy, and trial and error to treat it. I think some issues may overlap or defy labels or may be very hard to classify. And I think symptoms for these issues may shift depending on a number of factors. Research says that those with ADHD are more likely to have other conditions, like depression, bipolar disorder, etc. at the same time. My best to you, and good luck in getting your spouse to seek treatment. 

How ironic here I am giving

How ironic here I am giving advice on  acknowledging one another... and yet my spouse won't acknowledge my words to him.

My spouse won't say certain things to me that i need to hear, yet he will say ( or doesn't say) Certain things to others to make certain they hear that it appears disingenuous or even underhanded to make himself look better.

I had a long conversation

I had a long conversation with my husband yesterday.  It was humiliating to see how uninterested he is in me and my life and depressing when he made clear that he doesn't get the concept of spouses being able to take care of each other.


My husband's spending is driving me nuts. 4-5 trips to the corner store every day while he is supposed to be working...Junk food on the sly. Bank statements (money management is my responsibility of course) show all and he still will deny all. Argh, I'm at the end of my rope here. It get's better for a couple days if he's open to communication however, impulsive spending trips back and forth seem to be one of the ways he manages the restless part of it. Any suggestions?


In exactly the same situation

In exactly the same situation - have tried so many different ways to control his spending, but no success. Let me know if you come up with something!



Why can't I get it through my head that I am dealing with an unreasonable person?! A person that when shown the facts will STILL just not GET IT!  Even when humor is incorporated to clear the air, he stays angry and unmovable. I have got to consider this at all times. I have got to treat him as less than my child because even my child is accountable. But my husband is not my child. Holding him accountable causes too much conflict.  I will only stand my ground when it is TRULY important. 

I can do this. 

I find sometimes putting

I find sometimes putting things in writing makes him slow down enough to understand.  Or the heightened stimulation of a therapist's office usually makes my dh listen and understand.

There is hope

I am a highly functional ADHD male that has turned my life around for the better. I can tell you that it is possible for any individual diagnosed with ADHD to overcome its weaknesses and use its strengths to excel at being a husband, father, employee, friend and whatever other role affects others and themselves. The individual has the capacity to make these changes on their own but with the support, empathy and devotion of their loved ones as well as their loved ones willingness to think and respond differently after following the suggestions offered by Mrs. Orlov in her book would truly help speed this process up and create a new, strengthened relationship with your spouse. I know there are some individuals that may not have the willingness to make that change, and for those of you that have recognized that and accepted to part ways, I completely understand and empathize with your decision. However, I do implore you to try to stick with it and "be the change you want to see" not only by managing finances, cleaning the house, and whatever other examples are typically used, but through loving emotional support and understanding. One thing my counselor told me that helped me with communication and I think can apply to everyone is to try to talk to your spouse like you talk to others, especially your co-workers or a customer at work. In other words, before you choose to respond to something, think to yourself, would I say this to my co-worker or a customer? If so, how do I think they would respond? It may sound trivial but if you communicate with your spouse the way you generally communicate with a customer (IE: with respect, calmly, and courteously to name a few) you may find that your response either begins to change the way your spouse communicates with you or simply diffuses the situation both for "thrill seeking" spouses and for a spouse expecting the usual response from you that typically only escalates the situation.


Amazing! I am training a girl at work and I LITERALLY told myself to do just that. It is still hard because none of my coworkers act as miserable as this man. 

Really great advice though:)

Don't bottle it up

One more thing. Don't bottle up concerns. They'll eventually boil over and be an even worse blow out. Instead, ask yourself if it really is a concern or an irritation. If it really is a concern, then determine how to productively address it with your husband in a calm and rational matter. "I get concerned about our child's safety when you forget to pick her up from school." Even if his initial reaction is negative, stay the course. "Maybe we can use alarms or timers to help remind you when it's time to pick her up. Do you think that would be helpful?" Say it with a smile on your face even if all you want to do is tear his eyeballs out of their sockets. ;)

we have tried for years

We have tried for years in every way we know, in every way we have learned, in every way it is possible, but it gets to the point that we don't want to praise this person any more just to get them to listen to us, to hear us, to understand us. Because they just are not worth it. They add nothing to our lives but misery, there is nothing in there worth saving, just an overblown egotistical maniacal ingrate who thinks the world exists to serve their needs to the exclusion of all else. There is nothing special or wonderful about these people, they aren't especially gifted or wonderful, they just have so few positive traits we reflect our positive traits on to them. Much like people try to see human expression on an animal's face. Sorry folks, but it just ain't there.

Or have you?

Call me a doubting Thomas but every time I read something from a 'highly functioning' ADHD male who has turned his life around I wonder if you have really or if you are just as delusional as ever. Anyone can talk the recovery talk but few seem to be able to walk the walk. If I heard this from your wife or partner I might believe some of it, but hearing it from you I tend to doubt it. Sorry, just saying, my bf thinks he is doing just great too with his untreated ADHD. NOT.

You are hurting yourself more than him


I noticed a trend in a few posts you have made in the past few days. All were quite bitter, resentful, angry, even violent posts. Whatever individual events happened between you and your ADHD spouse, has left you in an extreme amount of pain. You deal with this pain by blaming your ADHD spouse completely and fully and hold onto your resentment, anger, righteousness like a shield, like a banner that makes you feel like you are better than him and any other ADHD individual out there. You try to rally others to your point of view, playing on their own emotions of pain, loneliness, and regret because you want reassurance that "they are the crazy ones" and you never did anything wrong nor should you have done anything to make things right.

You act as if only ADHD people are incapable of having a long lasting meaningful relationship. Yet countless marriages fail daily for one reason or another, often for the same types of reasons marriages affected by ADHD fail. I'm simply sick of the labels, the blame, the pity parties. It takes two to make a marriage last. It's not a fairy tale, it's not a perfect union, it does not come without its struggles and arguments, its frustrations and its realizations. Do you truly think that you will marry someone else and not find out something about that person you didnt know in the future? I wonder how many marriages fail within the first few years because one or both partners have the delusion that marriage will just be easy and things will only get better.

The truth is, marriage takes work, dedication, devotion, and true love. Not this notion of love that our would seems to think is real. You want to know what true love is? It's exactly what Jesus did for us throughout His life and when He selflessly sacrificed His life for our sins on the cross. It's helping others without an expectation of reward. It's turning the other cheek when someone strikes you. It's giving your life for someone that you love.

Call me old fashioned, delirious, whatever you want.. but there is a reason the world is in such a state of chaos. We have lost faith. Not only in each other, but in our Father. We put everything in front of Him and we treat our relationships like a competition instead of a union. You want to start to see your spouse love you again. Try loving him like Jesus did. If it's fake, it won't work by the way. If you are doing it because you expect results, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. You can't be disappointed if you have no expectations. You simply do because you love. You simply forgive because to not forgive is to only hurt yourself more. Let go and love.

Grieving vent

I'm in tears right now after opening my cell phone bill.  Saw the last call he and I had when he wanted to "hear my voice" while he was at work (I'd been sad and upset that morning) and then almost 12 hours later a call to my sister to tell her we'd gotten in a huge fight and that I was in the car about to drive 5.5 hours home in the middle of the night.  He never spoke to me again, just threw away our relationship.  I miss him right now.  And my furry son (dog), who I had to put to sleep last week.  This is a tough emotional ride...

Thinking of you HurtButHopeful

I am so sorry for your losses.  I do know how difficult it is to let go of someone/something who welcomes your every entry, who senses your every sadness, who stood by your side even through your most difficult moments.  I am sorry for your double loss.  The loss of your dreams with your husband and the loss of the companionship of your dog.

I'm so sorry!

I can completely empathize.  The last thing my ex-boyfriend said to me in September was "love you, have a good day".  Then 2 days later we had a "fight" via text message, then the next day he emailed that he'd be in touch soon but he had to "clear his head."  Never heard his voice again.  He cut me out of his life.  (he's done it before, so I shouldn't have been surprised).  

The hardest thing to learn, but the most important thing is THIS IS NOT ABOUT YOU.  Whatever happened between you two, the healthy, adult way to handle it with someone you love is to discuss it.  Work on things.  Figure out what happened and try to make it better.  Disappearing and cutting someone out of your life is NOT an acceptable way for an adult to handle his problems.  

However, it is a pretty common method for coping employed by those with untreated ADHD.  I don't blame my ex for this- it's the only way he knows how to handle the stresses of life.  He does the best he can and doesn't intend to hurt me.  But understanding doesn't make it hurt any less.  The only thing we can do is protect ourselves, love ourselves, and surround ourselves with reliable, loving friends and family.

You're right.  It's a tough ride, and I'm sorry you're on it.  But you are definitely not alone.  I'm grateful for these boards and the shared experiences help with the slow healing process.

Hang in there!!



Thanks jennalemon and

Thanks jennalemon and OMT!!

My emotions are all over the place, but I hurt a lot for him and am sad for him right now. Like you said, he does the best he can and doesn't intend to hurt.  He's built a lifetime of walls and defenses and I just wish happiness for him.  I wish he knew what I know now about ADHD and had the motivation and desire to want to try to see how his life could be different, but at the end of the day it is his choice.  I have to learn to accept that. 

I'm so tired.

I'm so tired.

so sad and lonely.  i don't

so sad and lonely.  i don't want to be alone.  We love each other but he has left me.  i wish i would die in my sleep.

We are never alone.  This

We are never alone.  This hurts and feels endlessly painful, but it will be better...

Please reach out to a friend or clergy or even the Suicide hotline if you really feel a danger to yourself...they can be a tremendous resource.


only time in my life

that I have wanted to put a gun in my mouth is after 5 years with adhd boyfriend. All the weirdness, all the ocd about things that don't matter, the phone, the ipad, the television, all at the same time, all the time, never pays attention, always distracted, never a real conversation about anything in five years. And when he does talk to me, it is all a bunch of lies, built upon lies, piled upon lies. And no reason to lie about anything, except he likes to lie, he likes being an ahole, he enjoys tormenting others. Then I found out he had adhd and I stayed three more years waiting for that moment when he would come to understand how horrible he treats everyone around him. But that moment will never, ever come. And with his cavalier, so what attitude, he is all too willing to tell me to go ahead and leave, doesn't care whether I am with him or not. but I am still a great person and I can have a great future, I just have to get far away from him and never, ever look back. If he doesn't care enough to get help for himself, why should I further damage myself being with him? It isn't about me, it's about his inability to see himself for what he is.

irrational and unapologetic

I don't know how much more of this crap I can take. I know that I'll never go grocery shopping WITH him again, if I can help it. Let me start by saying that my husband is taking our young son on a couple flights on Sunday, to visit his parents that he rarely sees.

Well, last night at the grocery store, I couldn't find a specialty item, and we were going up and down the aisles. Finally, I told my husband to just "wait here"with the buggy and our son while I went back to quickly check the aisles again.  I still can't believe that my husband actually had trouble with that and chased me down to tell me about it. He found me and said that it was "really messed up" how I left him alone with his son. I dropped my jaw and literally said "you are f ing kidding me, right?! You are about to take him on TWO flights BY YOURSELF and you can't handle him in Walmart?!?!?!"  He  gave me the look, then the silent treatment. Where is my apology for yet another act of irrationality? Sure, it must be annoying and frustrating when you can't seem to do anything right, but  must you create problems out of thin air?! Last week, he declared that a grocery store did NOT have bread, because he couldn't find it:/

It really angers me that I have to be the one always compromising and WORKING AROUND him. Where is his accountability?!? I'm trying to cooperate and cohabitate enough to get the mutual bills paid off. I'm more comfortable financially when I help him, but mentally and emotionally, I am miserable. We both are, but he won't consistently put forth the effort needed for change. 

I can't wait until we purchase the duplex and can get out of each other's living space. I could complain for hours. He can't even consistently abide by the few rules of my house. I still consistently have to TELL him what he should be doing WHEN he should be doing it. I have learned that asking him to do something in the future is pointless. This is a nightmare. If we didn't share a child, I would never want to see his face again. 

perfect description!

tfarmer thanks for your post.

the description of trudging through a snowstorm while your partner does snow angels is haunting.  and so apt.  that's exactly what it feels like.  all i see is the snow storm and all the work it takes to get through it, all he sees is the joy and wonder of the fun he's having.   i end up feeling small and mean and like the biggest killjoy ever.  i am working on "being my best self" but failing of course.  will keep trying,  today is another day.  last night we had a conversation where i tried to express to him that i do indeed have boundaries.   he responded by talking about how life is about the "journey".   um, yeah, right.  i get it.  i'm a killjoy is what that message was to me.   i said to him yep "the journey".  where are you going?  because without a plan, a foundation to get to to where you are going you are going nowhere.  adult behavior and responsibility is required to have a safe and enjoyable "journey".   i can't enjoy the "journey" without life's practical things being handled.  in sum i got another lecture last night that made me feel terrible about how i trudge through the snowstorm while he makes snow angels.   works for him.  not working for me.   so yes tfarmer, let's see if he freezes while i trudge forward and try to make some of my own snow angels along the way as I shift my focus from over-functioning for his sake to functioning in peace and love for mine.



Is this a difference between inattentive and hyperactive? Or just personality? We have a severe adhd at work that is ALWAYS in a great mood. She is on mood meds. I love her attitude, but she is insanely distractable to the point of causing problems. 

My husband is inattentive and extremely depressed. He was this way as soon as the hyperfocus wore off, back when I loved him and showed it every second. Mine wouldn't make snow angels, though I can still relate in a way. He would be yards behind me, complaining about how hopeless the journey is while I lead the way, thinking about the positivity of our future once we are clear of the storm. 

difference between inattentive and hyperactive?

i'm not sure -- seems that each case is different and manifests differently.   sounds like your husband has co-morbid depression of some sort resulting from the ADD or ADHD?

certainly, the difficulties of being him in the world could account for the depressive view.  it's really hard to be him!  yet at some point the person who owns the problem must take responsibility for it no matter how hard it is.  it's their responsibility and you can't fix it for them.   i know because i've tried to fix it for 14 years -- codependent?  overfunctioning?  yep, that's me!  but i am trying now to try differently -- and to "quit" that job.  : )   my husband's  version of ADHD is the chaotic live in the moment no forethought only good in a crisis hyper and distracted (yet sometimes depressed because all the failures do add up!) version.  he feels enormously inadequate and at the same time does nothing to change things -- he's stuck.   he is loveable and not a bad person.  his problem is huge.  his unwillingness or his inability (?) to do anything about it is what has me thinking of leaving.  it's been a long time and i've tried to be supportive.  when i haven't been a complete asshole to him.   i'm going to try again.  to not be an asshole. to take care of myself and let him take care of his stuff.   we'll see.  try, try again.  try differently.  for certain, i am sick and tired of being angry.  and i am sick and tired of living in a state of hypervigilance.  the trick is going to be figuring out which things i can not be hypervigilant about.


I very much understand

From  "he feels enormously inadequate", I can fully relate straight through to the end. It...is...hard!!! It seems the more that I give, the more he takes. He has no responsibilities in the house anymore because they can't continue to be undone and I can't continue to parent him or continue the constant resentfulness. This is just a sad, sad situation. I can't help feeling sorry for myself, and I can't wait to get him out of my house! 


the nice thing about this

the nice thing about this forum is that i know longer feel like i am insane, crazy, have some horrible problem never being satisfied.  it isn't me.  it's the ADHD.  the fact that other's experiences are so eerily similar to mine is in its own strange way a salve to my soul.  i am beginning to heal and come to the realization that there isn't anything wrong with ME.  and that it is what i am doing about it that is the problem.  i am not inherently broken!  hallelujah because for a long, long time -- very long -- i thought i was broken.   now, can i do this and not let it break me?   there are a ton of regrets in my past -- so, so many.  my life has not turned out the way i dreamed about it turning out.   so i have to forgive myself for that -- mourn in and move on and see how given what i have now i can create a new dream for the future.  it is possible that may mean being alone -- time will tell.  regardless, i'm going to be happy and stop acting broken and stop thinking i'm broken.  i'm fine.  have to choose my behavior forward.  that is all.  sounds simple but oh it is going to be so very, very hard.


and today feeling horrible again.

after feeling far more optimistic yesterday about taking care of myself and getting on with life in peace and love somehow i wake this morning to feeling entirely hopeless, depressed, sad and frightened again.  it is debilitating.  i don't feel like doing anything.  i feel mean and worthless.  my husband is as down as i am but in some ways he is not as down as me because he is preternaturally in the moment (the good of ADHD for those who have it) so there is little dwelling and a world filled with fascinating and joyful distractions for him.  i stew.  ruminate.  search for solutions.  feel helpless.  feel hopeless.  i am reading codependent no more at melissa's suggestion and it is depressing me more.  it is not the first time in my life i have read this book.  i grew up in a highly dysfunctional -- on the inside -- not on the outside -- family with one parent a very self destructive and dedicated addict.   i know the dance of codependence from this childhood.  i guess i really don't know anything else.  how to take care of myself.  i know of only two polarities in relationships.  surrending to be taken care of by a caretaker/caretaking someone who cannot manage themselves.  i have swung between the two.  i have to say i prefer being taken care of.   i CRAVE to be taken care of.  to not worry.  to have someone i TRUST to handle things and make my life wonderful and carefree.  ridiculous.  i am -- on the outside -- a highly (and i do mean HIGHLY) competent adult with a history of outstanding achievement in a very competitive field.  but that does not matter -- it is the inside that matters and the inside doesn't believe the outside.  sitting here writing my husband just decided to blast a song on the computer -- he didn't ask if i wanted to listen to it.  he then went on about the singer etc etc and i said "i guess we're all going to listen to this now"  -- not so sweet and dripping with cynicism.  he didn't even notice it.  ah.  this is my life.  maybe what i should have just done is tell him it is very interruptive to randomly blast music when i am sitting here without asking me.  nicely.  when i do something like that, express a boundary constructively, he tends to ignore it and tries to sell me why his way of doing something or whatever it may be that he is doing is right and good for me too and he does so enthusiastically and with great joy.  leaving me knowing that i am a killjoy and/or someone whose needs are truly unimportant or worse just wrong!  so i fold.  and go back to my dark little corner of the world where i can't get my own needs met because i am so easily silenced and squashed by the very overwhelming needs of others -- whether their needs are functional or not.   ok.  so i have the rest of the day.  will keep on trying differently.



I cannot believe he is not

I cannot believe he is not going to see his father in the hospital. His dad had a heart attack and his days are few. 

This is very sad.  And it

This is very sad.  And it must make you think about what he would do if you were in the hospital....

I don't wonder, I know. Been

I don't wonder, I know. Been there done that. His choice is the couch, not reaching out and supporting. 

I no longer list my husband

I no longer list my husband as the person to contact in case of an emergency.  I don't trust that he'd answer the phone or respond.

I feel the same way.  If he

I feel the same way.  If he did answer he would forget and never tell me the message. My sister passed away last July, suddenly.  I got the call at 1 AM.  Woke him up and told him I had to go to the hospital, Debbie is there and might not make it.  She had a chronic illness and was often admitted to the hospital 3-4 times a year.  But never have I gotten a call in the middle of the night and never with my brother-in-law saying she might not make it.  So I leave, drive 40 minutes in the middle of the night to an area that is a bad area, using only the GPS to guide me, trying not to cry so I can drive, knowing my sister will most likely be gone by the time I get there.  Well, she was dead by the time I arrived and our dad.  I cry with everyone, go into the room to see her, then my dad and I go outside to wait for the pastor.  I try to call my husband to tell him.  He doesn't answer, I called 3 times, no answer (his cell phone that he keeps in his pocket, so he didn't hear it or feel it vibrate).  It was one hour after I left the house that I called him.  In that time he fell back asleep so soundly, not worrying at all about his wife in a strange area that is not safe at 2 AM.  He never once asked me how I was doing, still hasn't until this day, even with her first birthday and the first holidays without her.  The day of her funeral he was able to get overtime.  He asked me 3 times if I could get out of going to both viewings (they had 2 viewings and her funeral all in one day) so he could go into work!  It's either the ADHD or he just doesn't care anymore, and I don't see how this is related to his ADD.


most importantly, I AM SO VERY SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS!  and i'm so sorry you had no support from your husband during this time.  i'm not an expert but that does not sound like ADD --

perhaps the phone calling bit -- NOT THE QUESTIONS REGARDING HER VIEWING AND FUNERAL!!!!    that's just what i think though and like i said i am no expert.  I AM VERY, VERY SORRY!!

Oh my, I'm so sorry for your

Oh my, I'm so sorry for your loss and the lack of support from where you expect and need it most. I don't know where to put the label on your situation or even if it needs a label. Black and white, he was unavailable, regardless of intent. This is the pivot point I have found for me. And it is not acceptable for me. Your choice is to tell him the behavior you need from him. It may not be ideal but it is something he may hear/connect with. Hugs to you, you'll always find support here. 

Sorry for your loss

Sorry for your loss. What you had to go through sounds unbelievable.

I can't believe that it is all ADHD either.  Sorry again for what you had to put up.

Thank you all for your kind

Thank you all for your kind words.  I do try to let the not hearing the phone bother me too much b/c his sleep is a mess, he works shifts and sometimes I think he has narcolepesy, he just can't stay awake when he's tired.  I'm tired too but I don't fall asleep like he does.  But still, I wish he would have been worried about me leaving in the middle of the night like that.  The rest I think is just him not caring, I don't think it's the ADD I think he is just a jerk at times and that was one of them.  After we got married I started to see the selfish behavior come through and then when we learned he has ADHD I thought, that's why he is so self involved.  It always confused me because at times he was very generous and caring, but looking back it was only in situations when he could get praise for it.  His mother is the same way.  He would only care for me if outsiders saw that and praised him for it.  He wouldn't do it out of the kindness of his heart or his love for me.  I think he is just selfish.  That's what is hard about all of this.  Some if it could be ADHD and needs treated and some of it could be he is just a jerk.  Hard to tell the difference.  But thank you for your replies, at least I'm not crazy!

we make so many excuses

We make so many excuses for what is unacceptable behavior. True, it isn't their fault they are brain damaged, but it is their fault they prefer not to seek treatment. At the end of the day it is their fault, just as it is our fault we choose to put up with it.

drove 2000 miles

i drove 2000 miles across the west by myself, across the desert, gone for ten days and never got the first text or call asking where I was at or if I were okay. He forgot, apparently, that I was driving from Vegas, through Utah, Colorado, Arizona, doing the grand circle. Never thought about me once I wasn't in the line of sight, sort of like the bills he has to keep lying everywhere so he will remember to pay them. I went on the trip all by myself because he doesn't like to fly into airports and watch me make my way through them without much effort while he struggles to understand which gate we are flying into and what seat he is in. It isn't that I'm not worthy of companionship, love and caring, it's that he isn't capable of all of the above.

Who's sicker?

A phenomenon at my house is the game "Who's sicker?" As soon as me or the kids start getting any kind of ailment my DH rushes to prove he's the sickest of us all. Apparently the rules of the game are to be as loud and pitiful about not feeling good as possible so you don't have to help me or have a fair share of taking care of the sick kids, oh and "please run and get me X", honey! So I get to run around do everything he won't do and take care of the sick kids, while I am sick (on top of the normal crazy making experience that is our life). I.AM.LOSING.MY.MIND. I just ignore him. He can make his own tea, lord knows I do. 

I think that is a guy thing

I remember when my daughter, first husband (not ADD as far as I know) and I all had the flu. We all trooped off to the doctor together. But because I was pregnant, I couldn't get the same medicine that the two of them got. My husband demanded that I get him things and generally wait on him. I even had to go to the store to get weird foods he was craving. I was probably sicker than him, as well as 6 months pregnant.

I do think ADD makes this tendency worse, and it's certainly infuriating, especially when you are sick and have to take care of sick kids at the same time.

I think you are right about it being a guy thing...

It just makes me mad, as silly as it sounds, that it is just one more reminder of having no one to take care of me when I need it, and one more thing that I have to be responsible for on top of everything else with no relief.

He absolutely refused to take care of me in my second pregnancy despite working double shifts to cover his unemployment and eventually going on bed rest, I ended up not really being on bed rest bc someone had to take care of the then 3 year old and I had to eat etc..... GRRR. I am not in my happy place today. :-(

I'm so sorry...

The rest of what you are saying (unemployment, not taking care of their pregnant wife, etc) sounds like pure ADD. It is so frustrating, especially when we know that, with treatment, their lives and ours can be so much better.


Thankfully the pregnancy and unemployment period of our lives are behind us (although he is freaking me out everyday with some of the hijinx he pulls in his current job). It just seems like no matter how hard I try to be positive things or actions he takes (or doesn't take) reminds me of all the stuff I've dealt with in the past and it puts me in a bad place. How am I supposed to move on, if they continue? 

I'm never taken care of.

I'm never taken care of.  Ever.  I understand.  And this is so far from silly.  Because it's the truth and it's actually very scary.  What if I get really, REALLY sick?  It frightens me.

Ah yes, we're in great shape now, but what if????

So, you're 37 years old and your health has been deteriorating rapidly. One day you are told that you have thyroid cancer and guess what - you are f&*(#d. Yep! Radiation, total thyroidectomy, the whole shebang. Ex-husband of 17 years, a total narcissistic wacko (NOT ADHD!) totally takes advantage of the situation. You are trying to manage all your household and financial affairs from bed while he and his mistress go on cruises and lavish vacations. This from a man whom I would have to accompany just for his dental appointments. Trust me, it was hell which is why 6 months after my surgery I left the guy.

Fast forward several years later, I've been struggling with ADHD (undiagnosed, at least it was to me) BF. He's a good, kind person, unlike my ex, but it suddenly dawns on me one day whether I would face a similar outcome as with my previous husband should I become ill. While ADHD BF wouldn't be off trolloping with a mistress, he certainly couldn't keep things running smoothly nor do I think he could give me real support such as that I received from my friends during my previous ordeal. That was a bit of a rude awakening. I had hoped to never find myself in that position again. Never say never. I wouldn't have dreamed of facing such a medical ordeal at 37, but it happened. As we get older it is something one should very seriously consider. This was not the deciding factor in ending the relationship, but it was something that was ever present in my mind after I realized the implications.


I've been thinking about the

I've been thinking about the very same thing as two nights ago I returned from an exhausting trip (that HE was adamant I went on) and was somewhat sick, but he did not care that I needed to rest. He demanded I get out of bed several times to help him with mundane tasks he could have easily completed himself. He said, "you slept enough last night" ...wow. It never ends. God forbid I get some long-term illness like cancer. Who knows how he will respond? it's a very lonely feeling and realization that this person you love so much becomes incapacitated when I become even slightly ill. He actually made a 'to-do' list of items he wants me to complete today because he saw my illness and jet lag yesterday as being lazy and an intentional attack on him. He actually said, "I'm tired of doing everything myself."   That blew my mind. He was fishing the entire last week in another state. He worked one day and panicked because he couldn't get the printer to print what he wanted printed, and that was "doing everything by himself"  Oh wait, he washed one load of laundry too.    While I tried to rest he slammed doors and constantly woke me up to ask ridiculous things. This is how you treat someone you say that you miss?  How sad that I can't even return to my own home and rest when needed because of being married to an immature irrational brat. 

This is the difference

This is the difference between planning, and flying by the seat of pants at others' expense. I can't say anything, the ADHD mind doesn't get it:

  • I offered to scan/email some medical paperwork to ADD dh.
  • He says he doesn't need to be stressed with more paperwork in his Inbox.
  • He's called me a total of 4 times since then to ask me to read every medical code listed on there, as well as asking me for the same contact numbers each time.
  • I decide to go ahead with scan/email, THEN alerted him.

His reply?


As Winnie the Pooh might say to Tigger (ADHD): "oh, bother." (or "[email protected]#$%")



I'm trying to stay loving but

I'm trying to stay loving but detached, I really am. 

We've been going to the same business the past 20 years. But he can't, or won't, look up the info for a form he has to fill out. He's telling me to fetch information for him every couple minutes for each section he's completing (what's the address, what's owner's name?, what's the fax, etc etc). Why can't he plan ahead and have HIS own wallet ready, look at the current invoices, and look things up himself? He insists on focusing on one line at a time, his way. He's sitting there logged on to the internet and can't be bothered to do a common search. And of course storms off because he is mad that I've become exasperated.... it feels particularly worse because I DID get him everything he asked for.

Perhaps I do not know I need to detach by making him help himself, without running around waiting on him hand and foot. Can one truly TRANSCEND such conflicting approaches...?


It's okay..

.. to be urgently busy oneself.  Let him talk to an empty room while you take a shower, cut the grass, wash the windows (outdoors of course), clean the garage, take the kids/dogs/cats for an urgent walk in the rain/snow/sleet/sun/whatever, discuss quantum physics over the garden fence.

My husband would shout questions to me from his office while I sat in mine, but he wouldn't notice that I'd left.   Stay gone long enough and he might forget he ever asked (it is ADHD after all).


Thank you for being the voice

Thank you for being the voice of calmness... I have felt it through your posts...

it feels as if I have been equated with the mother role permanently and i cannot extricate from it any longer

Thanks for making me smile :)

You're probably the only person in the world who would associate me with 'calm'.  I shall tell everyone that I *can* at least play calm on the Internet regardless of what what they think.

Yes, you can extricate. And forget all that 'loving detachment' stuff, it's okay not to feel 'loving' every second. Quite freeing, actually.

Hide and Seek

It is not just the loneliness of living in a marriage without communion, it is the confusion of trying to partner with someone so contrary and seemingly void of empathy.  I keep trying to find the heart and soul inside him to love but he keeps his real self hidden behind a facade of jocularity and "not caring". He spends his time in solitary amusements. Everything seems to be a coverup and secretive.

no intimacy to speak of... it

no intimacy to speak of... it feels as if I have begun to reflect what I see in him, back to him.

stop trying to save them

Perhaps we all need to stop trying to help them/save them/fix them and save ourselves a lot of grief and misery instead. Don't we deserve love that we don't have to suffer and fight for, happiness that can't be snatched from us by their brain's disordered state? What is wrong with us, we need to be asking, that we feel like we have to martyr ourselves and throw away our lives to 'save' them? Especially those of us that aren't married to them and don't have children by them. This isn't a Hollywood flick, after the epic struggle there won't be a happy ending, ever. No matter what drugs they finally decide to take, no matter what therapies, they still have ADHD and most, like addicts, regress back to their original state because they are what they want to be. Quite frankly, from everything I see on this site, we are the ones that are suffering from a sickness and need to be treated post haste for what appears to be a need to be saviors of people who do not want to be saved. Sort of like the Christians who tortured the Jewish people to 'convert' them for their own good. If they want to be ADHD, perhaps we should let them stew in their own misery while we go on and enjoy our lives with someone who can communicate and live with us on an adult level. Or is it perhaps we think these damaged people with more problems than solutions are the best we can do? Just thinking out loud about how happy, uncomplicated and fulfilled my life was before I met him , and how much I miss just being normal. I obviously need major help because I can do better all by myself.

I feel like I have just been smacked in the head

This is what family and friends have been telling me for a LONG time.  I need to stop hearing it and reading it and START LIVING IT!


Thank you for being so candid.

I physically pay almost all

I physically pay almost all the bills for our family.  I ask my husband to pay for half of joint expenses.  My husband takes care of his parents and so lives with them most of the time.  I sent him envelopes, already addressed to me, to use for his twice-monthly payment of his share of expenses.  He didn't send a check this week as I'd asked him to do.  He didn't respond to any of the messages I sent asking him about the check.  When I asked him why, on the phone, he said first that he didn't send it because he's stupid.  He is not stupid.  Then he said he didn't send it because he's a jerk.  Then he said he didn't send it because doing so meant he'd have to find a stamp.  What a huge amount of thought and energy he's putting into not doing something.  I'm sad.

"What a huge amount of time

"What a huge amount of time and energy he's putting into not doing something"? Yes. This SO MUCH.  He just spent 45 minutes telling me how he didnt have the time to listen to me for five minutes. Maybe Ill be sad about this once I stop blinking in complete disbelief.


Dh said to me, "I don't have to earn any money because I don't spend any money."   

DH once said, "Because my

DH once said,

"Because my parents are dead and can't see their grandkids, it makes me sad. That's why I won't go visit your parents because I don't want to give your parents the opportunity to see their grandkids either."



In response to my simple

In response to my simple <YES> or <NO> question, i.e. I'd like to tip the handyman. Is that okay?"

  • "I can't be bothered right now."
  • "Please don't ask me this question."
  • "I'm busy right now with this email/post/instant message, can't it wait?"

These are LOSING answers to me. I keep asking but I get no answer.

My ADHD spouse's reply takes LONGER than it would to say <YES> or <NO> .... Catch-22 is his hang-up with money, he needs to know where every penny goes.

So I decide, act on my own. I tip the handyman and I'll figure out how to balance the account somehow. >>> proactive.



Forgiveness easier than permission?

It's easier to ask for forgiveness (if it ever turns out to be necessary) than permission. Same as non-ADHD life, when stuff just has to be done without jellyfishing around.

Nervous, excited, apprehensive, hopeful....

He FINALLY FINALLY went to the psychiatrist today and got RXs! Went to the pharmacy, realized he lost/didn't have his insurance card, had me call and get the info from the insurance, I gave it to the pharmacy, found out it required a PA and moved money around so we could pay cash for the ridiculously expensive medications, because ; I.CAN.NOT.LAST.ONE.MORE.DAY. He just took his first dose....now we wait. 


You promised to bring me to

You promised to bring me to the new restaurant bar in town for the past three weekends. Each time you've gone out on an errand, you've ended up stopping there by yourself without bringing me.

You spent 5 hours OCD'ing over a new media system that should have taken you an hour to set up and then you went out.

You went to pick up dinner for us. That was 3 hours ago. I just phoned and you are hanging out at the bar.. by yourself AGAIN!!! 

I. hate. the. absolute. unaware. unconsciousness. or is it truly unaware? You had your son meet you there, so you had him pick up my call.

You buy yourself quality drinks and will be going elsewhere to bring home some cheap takeout. Of course you will just tell me the situation presented itself, and how were you to know how the night ends. You won't even consider I feel completely left out of your life.



I feel your pain...


I'm sorry and I relate only too well to your pain. The missed birthdays, missed anniversaries, missed family milestones, missed vacations together, and missed holidays that can never be made up. Unaware? Unconscious? I'd like to think that he really didn't know or understand what pain he caused, but, I don't know. What I do know is how I felt left out of his life and how miserable I had become. I also know how shocked, mortified and angry my (and our) friends and family were to find out that I had been spending all this time alone - effectively abandoned. I wish I could have believed that he would change if for no other reason than his wanting to stop hurting me. I couldn't believe. I no longer trusted. I ultimately decided that if I am to spend all this time alone, then I will consciously choose to spend it ALONE. I'd rather my solitude be of my own choosing and not have it imposed upon me. 


Thank you... and i understand

Thank you... and i understand fully all the missed opportunities. I TRULY RELATE to what you are experiencing. Many do not believe it when I tell them, thinking I am exaggerating because my dh has a very honed social side to him.  Of which he gladly reveals to family and they end up pitying him for his spectrum challenged state, and they end up mocking me for perceived weakness. My SIL called from her vacation with her husband (dh brother) to let me know that *she* knew my dh never took me anywhere. What was her purpose? i am digressing. 

To go dine, Add dh has to have drinks but has to stop the meds  because they do not mix. Without the meds tho, he doesnt think to take me. I am home all the time, to replace his dead mom. i should have put it together how intensely he pursued me those months leading up to his mother passing away.


Alright, so instead of "brunch," we decide to get new cellphones to replace years-old phones. DH has been hostIle since we got home, all evening. It finally comes out when he hisses: "you didn't THANK ME"

I am his wife for petes sake. I have been thanking him for the last twenty years ... has he so much as thought to consider the same, for I what I have done to accommodate the adhd..?

I had a root canal done this

I had a root canal done this morning.  My tooth had deteriorated because I didn't go to the dentist for years because my husband lost his job and didn't look for more work.  The procedure was painful and stressful.  I didn't tell my husband about it because I don't tell people about things like this unless they need to know to be able to help me cover my obligations (i.e., my coworkers) or because they care (e.g., my daughters, my sister, my really good friend).  My husband falls into neither category.


Within the span of about 10 minutes, DH managed to make completely negative comments about 3 different subjects: God (who he blames for his problems instead of taking responsibility for his choices), people in our cub scout pack (because he took a leadership role he shouldn't have and no one can live up to his standards), and teachers (I taught for 6 years and am taking classes to renew my license because I guess I will have to find a job since he can't keep one.) It is so exhausting to listen to. I can't imagine what it is like to go through life being so incredibly negative and blaming everyone else for your problems.


Mine loudly declared that he "hates my %#$& house" because I parked too close to the mailbox and he couldn't get out of the car. I was trying to park outside the fence for once. Everything is drama and negativity with him and it was one of the things that turned me off him. 

Easy money plan

My guy can't handle having all of his paycheck go in one account or he'd never get his bills paid. So, what I did was have him set up a checking acct at the bank where his truck loan is. The loan payment is set up on an automatic transfer. His cell phone, netflix, and truck insurance all come out automatically. This acct has my name on it so I can call or make withdrawals if needed. We do not have checks for it, but we do have a debit card for it, but he does not have that. That account gets a deposit each payday that is enough to cover the bills that come out, plus a little extra for random necessities. The money that he gets to spend goes into an acct at a different bank so that it is not easy to transfer. The amount varies since he gets OT some weeks, but he always has enough for gas money and stops at the convenience store for a bottle of pop. I gave up worrying how much he spends foolishly. The bills are paid and if I'm lucky, I cangrab some grocery money from the extra. He always uses up all of his money & sometimes thinks he should have more, but for the most part he's fine with what he gets. The nice part is that I don't have to manage his money for him and he gets his atm card that he can spend how he wants.

That is great that you can

That is great that you can manage it like that and that your guy is okay with that. It would completely turn my dh insane. I have tried for 20 years without any real changes except for one. My dh refused to even let me have access to any of his accounts for many years of our marriage. I finally got him to go joint so I can access and know how we are doing at all times since we live off his paycheck. But still, it is basically in his control but I'm no longer in the dark.

I think he is so relieved to

I think he is so relieved to finally have a way to take care of his bills that he's fine with it. It also got him a way to save money for dude trips with his son, which he was never able to do before. He gave me his ATM card way back when we first started dating and asked me to hold it for him so he didn't get stupid. Each week he'd tell me how much allowance he needed and the rest went to bills. He did get a little grumpy at times that I was controlling his money, but when I'd tell him I'd give him his card back and how much money would he have then, he always let it go. When he finally had enough money saved up to buy his truck, that's when we got the account at the other bank and split his deposit. That way he could have his ATM card and take whatever he wanted because the bill paying money couldn't be touched. It gave him back just enough control that he could go get it on his own, but also the assurance that he wouldn't spend too much. As far as I know, he's happy with it like this. Right now, we are "just friends" and I still take care of his bill paying account for him. I'll be curious to see if it would last if I wasn't looking after it for him, but he seems content to leave it like this for now. I really don't have to do anything since it's all automatic payments so no big deal to me.

The happy joker

Why does a grown man sit for hours alone doing diversions and amusements and disregard his family's finances, physical health, emotional health, relationships, refusing to even talk about anything other than telling jokes?

Do you live my SO too?

Do you live my significant other too?


I haven't been here in a LONG time.  Sadly, I return and see the same names and same comments.  My heart aches.

WHY do they do that?  jennalemon, I WISH I HAD A CLUE.

HUGS as we suffer together.


Some days....

Some days I wouldn't trade having ADHD for anything in the world. 

Happy V'day!

Sometimes you just can't fix it. Trying to be the best person I can be in the meantime!!

Happy Valentine's Day -- not

On Valentine's Day and other special days (my birthday), I feel like the person who Cupid hit over the head with his bow, instead of the one he shot in the heart with his arrow.

Happy valentines day.

Husband was sweet and got me beautiful flowers (no doubt from me hounding him to get his daughter flowers).  He also took me to dinner the night before at our favorite special place.  It was really nice.  For 2 days I had hoped that maybe he would kiss me, like really kiss me. Didn't happen.  Last time he kissed me was 12/9/2012 when he was totally drunk.  Maybe he thought I was someone else.  He will be moving put soon.  I am scared that I will like my life better with out him in it.

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

Where is everyone?

Woke up at 8:30 am.  No one is home but me.  I have reached the end of my understanding of WHY WONT HE TELL ME WHEN HE GOES SOMEWHERE. . . . . . .

I have made many-a suggestion. . .leave a note, write it on the message board, send me a text, anything, something,.......

It is common respect to let other people who live with you know when you are leaving and when you are coming back.  

I am so tired of his behaviors, that I want to just replicate them . . . . solely to be mean.  

Sigh, but I wont.  It is just not who I am.

My son happens to be gone this morning too.  No clue where he went either. . . . . . . . . .he is in jeopardy of getting blasted with anger that belongs solely to his Dad, just for no good reason other than I am ticked.

gone baby gone

Yep, he just leaves sometimes, like yesterday, Valentine's Day, to go to an auction. Plan was for us to do things together, early movie, lunch, etc., but he met a guy at the auction, drove around for hours looking at property, shows back up at 1:00 p.m. etc. etc.  Anyway, so after I had my little snit, I left, for the rest of the day/night. When I got back this morning, he was headed off to meet a guy about a truck. Didn't ask where I had been or anything. I doubt that he noticed I was gone. Anyway, he expects me to meet him at sales point if he sells his truck and drive him home. But you know how my memory is, I forget everything, no him. Soooo, you can't blame me if he's stuck with no ride home, can we?  Thinking that having ADHD can be fun and totally liberating.

So a note ..

.. saying he'd gone to Walmart for razor blades would help how if he's actually having an hour of wild sex with the blonde who works at the Post Office on Saturdays?  Either there is trust in a relationship or there is none.

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

It is not about trust nor suspicion

I have no need to be suspicious.

I do have need to be considered with respect because it is important to me. 

It's not about having a bunch of rules.  " Etiquette is about relationships – it’s about how we get along with each other. " ~Emily Post~


every second of every minute of every hour of every single miserable day :(

Resigned2B's picture

Reading your posts...

Dear :(

I have been reading your recent posts. You sound even worse than I do... And I KNOW how desperate I feel! I want so badly to tell you things can get better. Isn't that what this site supposed to be about? But I can't say that yet. The ADHD crazy around our house is endless and merciless. There are now three full grown adult males in my life with it and I am out numbered. I just don't have any fight left.

I keep trying to tell myself that there is no ADHD in Heaven. Families are forever, right? That means there must be hope in Christ when we pass I to eternity.

Many on the site have or are divorcing. You all must be young enough to recover. I'm not... It would be stupid to leave to go where? Under a viaduct? I might as well stick around for the abuse. How many years do I have left? It can't be THAT long...

I recently discovered my husband has spent all our money, all our retirement, and has lied about everything for four years. We have almost nothing left and we are nearly sixty. This behavior is called, 'Financial Infidelity' regardless of who engages in it or for what reason.

My church leader [which is a BIG deal] said this to me when he learned of my situation last week: 

"I am not suggesting reverse psychology. What I am suggesting is the current method is not working for you nor your husband.  I don't believe that your current strategy of expressing frustration towards him is going to result in the positive outcome you are looking for.  You need to change your approach."

Really? After thirty years he thinks I haven't tried EVERYTHING humanly possible??? It's ME who has to change - not HIM???

I found out yesterday that my husband is STILL lying to me about it and that he's implemented additional securities to make sure I never have a prayer of knowing the truth. It is breathtaking...

Feel free to weigh in...

Good luck to you and everyone looking for the answer. If you find it, will you post it here??? :<




I can relate to the

I can relate to the "financial infidelity", which in our case I refer to it as "financial manipulation". While dh is a good provider, there is a part of the ADD that doesn't make me or the children forget for one instant that he is the only one who has provided for us. I can buy necessities for the family online but I am not allowed to use a credit or debit card in front of him when we're out in public. Sometimes I sneak a purchase in when he's off somewhere, or I just don't make any specific purchases that I know might set him off. Something sets him off in such a bad almost violent way. Once I purchased a soda on my own and he started screaming at me, calling me every name in the book. I have had to become invisible in this area.

When this happens and I say something to someone in frustration, I always get some snarky reply like "at least he's paying for everything." or the charitable but near impossible "you need to detach and let him have it his way. If he's happy, then you'll be happy." 

As for the grown adults with ADHD in your life. I have 3 family members here, in various stages of ADD/ADHD/Autism+ADHD. Lately I feel like I'm becoming ADD too or a subset (??) of ADD, with Depression (??) I can't remember if I took my medication for depression 20 minutes ago. I also sleep for very large amounts during the day when they are all out of the house. I feel I am being perceived as lazy and a bit of an eccentric to most of our neighbors. The three of them are always doing something out in the community while I clean, cook, sleep and start all over again every day. Could there really be something wrong with me?


Resigned2B's picture

He may just be a jerk!

Dear Coping,

I'm so sorry to hear the stifling financial straitjacket you are in. I hate to say this but maybe you should consider some financial infidelity of your own... Saving some money out for your escape! To treat you like such a child instead of the partner you should be must feel very humiliating. I guess the outcome for both of us is the same. :<

Who is it that says 'if he's happy then you'll be happy'? That is very shortsighted and, forgive me, ignorant! I hope you don't listen to that nonsense. My husband is always very happy. Why shouldn't he be, he's getting everything he everything wanted?!? While your husband is getting the admiration of the outside world with his community service who is giving you ANY accolades for staying home doing the grunt work??? My guess is - nobody!

You didn't mention why you are on antidepressants. Do you mind if I ask?

mm... this might be a good

mm... this might be a good thread on it's own :) I take antidepressants partially as it is chemical-related and partly to deal with becoming confused over time by the demands of the AD/HD household.  Nobody seems to be thinking in the same fashion, so everyone seems to be talking but not one single person hearing anything, so it is depressing. 

When things are good, they are wonderful. When bad, it's devastating. I think the stress levels of the mind can only take so much yo-yo-ing before it rebels.

You don't have to answer, but do you have any money of your own that you can transfer into an annuity, IRA, or some where safe where it can't be touched until you are retired and can access it yourself? I have been trying to get my dh to contribute to a spousal IRA but to no avail. Thank goodness I was an independent working person before all this, I have retirement but worry if I should become deceased sooner than later! LOL! morbid, I know. 

Resigned2B's picture

Dear Coping,

Dear Coping,

I would start a new thread if I knew how!

The reason I asked about meds is this. Twenty four years ago I started taking antidepressants. I was convinced that I was simply not able to deal with six children, husband, etc.. Hence, I started on Prozac and was okay for some years. Things with home life escalated. Kids got older, needed more attention, income issues, and so forth. They upped my meds, changed the combinations, and well, you know the drill. 

Here we are, thirty years into our marriage, and the entire time of me taking meds, therapy, ECT, it was the WRONG spouse taking them. It was like giving chemotherapy to one person in hopes it would cure the other! My husband has ADHD and, unbeknownst to me, was the donating DNA to our children with it.

For anyone reading this who is a non-ADHDer, in a relationship with someone who does have it, you know that even the most mentally balanced person can go nuts putting up with ADHD! Two of our boys have it as well. They were diagnosed at ages 3 and 5. I thought I was the donating DNA. I was wrong and so were the doctors.
Had they listened to ANY of our life's stories together they would have caught this. Instead, they were willing to diagnose me with everything under the sun and I bought EVERY word. The amount of personal loss I have sacrificed is truly untold! The psyche meds were actually making me worse. I became more dependent on them and the side effects were taking their inevitable long term toll. Not only in mental health but, more especially, in physical health. I nearly lost my life on a couple of occasions and put my children through hell.

This warning is NOT true for everyone!

I just wish I had been able to see things for what they were and the meds made that impossible!!!  Now, after 24 years, I am off everything. Our new controlling government and society doesn't put much value on people nearly sixty. They just soon those people 'pass on'... I don't have much to look forward to as budgets are being cut, spendable income is way down, the dollar is worth less and less, wasteful 'entitlement spending' is taxing us to death and health benefits cost everyone much MORE and deliver much LESS.

I really thought we had our retirement covered until two weeks ago. It was only then I discovered we had nothing left. He had borrowed against our 401k to pay bills he didn't want me to know about and other business related expenses. SURPRISE!?! Massive 'financial infidelity'. And yet, to this minute, he feels that HE is the injured party...

Just a cautionary tale for readers, especially those in an ADHD relationship!

Such a shame...


Husband wants to make a

Husband wants to make a 300-mile round trip to put a new battery into daughter's car, even though daughter doesn't want him to do so.  Same husband has been unable/unwilling  to drive to the bank or an ATM to make a deposit (and thus has not been able to pay me or the credit card company) in more than a month.  

Let me get this straight...

DH dropped me off at work, then called later asking me where the spare key was to the van. (our only vehicle) I told him it was in my purse at work. (because so often, BOTH keys go missing in the house. I wanted to know exactly where one was at all times.) he locked the keys in the car at Menard's. Was already home (after walking there) getting the bike to ride back there. Had to ride to my place of work (thankfully, in the same town) to get the key, then ride bike back to Menards. When he picks up the key, I ask why he didn't call the non-emergency police to unlock the doors. Oh, they have better things to do (in the daytime in a relatively crime-free area.) He is looking around at the DVDs (I work at a library) then says, "Well, guess I had better get going. Hope there is still gas in the car." What???? That is right. He locked the keys in the car WHILE IT WAS RUNNING and decided to take over an hour to do all of that instead of calling the police. Unbelieveable. I don't even have words for this.

The Happy Joker

Apologies that the following reply has not linked to the original message because I wasn't logged in when I clicked "reply".

If it were me I'd say it's because something's made him uneasy and he feels it's too big or too amorphous to confront directly, so he busies himself with activities that fill the void. The other thing that can happen is that the sense of unease can make it seem too difficult to focus on other people's concerns, reverting instead to a fallback position of reflex witticisms. With me I become pun-obsessed: if I see a pun or play on words in something being said I seize on that shiny object rather than the message being expressed.


Instead of cursing and blaming God when something goes wrong due to your ADHD, you should take it as a sign from Him: GET SOME HELP! 

need to vent

Been at this for almost 18 years.  Knew the spouse had ADD but didn't know that so much of our troubles were his ADD.  Didn't help that I was clinically depressed.  I've gotten treatment and am fine.  But before the diagnosis, I was the reason our marriage was horrible.  Now that I am better, he uses other things to excuse his behavior.  The lies and the deception.  I try to tell myself that I am not the reason he does what he does.  I've done everything he's asked and more.  But he still does what he does (lies).   He's tried meds but keeps stopping.   I know it takes two to tango and I know I am not perfect but I am at my wits end.  I think he knows how that his ADD is making our marriage difficult.   He said something to me about how patient and compassionate I am.  But I think he is either afraid to get help or doesn't want to admit he is the cause of most of the turmoil.  Like others on this forum, waiting for a miracle.

slug box:

Dear ADHD spouse: The boys need you. Without any father figure or male role model, they aren't going to learn. But I ask myself, do you have the capacity to really teach them an education in life skills? I'm teaching them life skills with emotional intelligence as best I can, but knowing you don't have this as a top priority...  I can't handle when you just seem to be living your life in another room by yourself...

A Hallmark card telling me your regrets cannot really fix a lifetime's worth of manipulating the ones closest to you. You have to be able to listen without feeling threatened.

The irony is coming home with a book on parenting yet you refuse to read it on the grounds you feel pressured to. So I end up reading it and telling you about it. And the person who loaned it to you continues to think you're a wonderful hands-on dad when you parrot what I summarize to you in drips and drabs.

It's like living on a treadmill, one's running for their lives and getting nowhere.

I'm very frustrated cuz my

I'm very frustrated cuz my Husband with severe untreated ADHD didn't send me an important email with information regarding when his student loan would begin to automatically debit. I just found out too late that the payment that was due for this month is now past due cuz it won't begin automatically debiting until next month so now I'm worried about this negatively affecting our account. I don't like having to completely control our finances, but he has left me with no choice since he's irresponsible when it comes to paying any bills on time. He is primarily responsible for paying our car payment, water and sewage and I usually have to remind him when they are almost due. Before we got married my credit was fantastic and his was pretty bad cuz he hadn't been paying his student loan on time or his utilities. Now both our credit scores are lower than I'm comfortable with.

For slug box

I have to accept the one area where we will never truly connect and that is on the spiritual level. I need to have that aspect in my life and with a partner. Without it, my sharing my deepest thoughts with you always ends in frustration and ultimately pain. My thoughts are a threat to your way of thinking.

Can't remember to do our ADHD homework

It's frustrating when ADHD spouse doesn't remember to do his homework or to be home at the appointed time do our homework.  I can't wait until I find this humorous instead of frustrating!

The fact that you never spend

The fact that you never spend quality time with your son saddens and irritates me. It is made even worse when you know ahead of time that you are leaving him , won't see him for months , and you STILL spend no quality time with him. Then you want to get up early on the day you are leaving to get in some quality time for 15 minutes. And you walking around sad and mopey the day before doesn't make me sad for you, it makes me want to shake the $&@[email protected]& out of you!!!! WHERE WERE YOU THE LAST TWO WEEKENDS?!! Sitting on your couch, on your phone!!! You could have kept him out of daycare and took him to Chuck e cheese yesterday, but YOU won't do (hardly) ANYTHING without being forced to. It is maddening because I know you are good person with a soft heart, but your actions hurt  everyone, including yourself. 

Yep.  This was almost 2/3 of

Yep.  This was almost 2/3 of my long distance relationship with my ex-BF and his behavior towards me (whom he saw maybe once a month for 2-3 days) and his young daughter (whom he saw a few times a month).

It is maddening because I know you are good person with a soft heart, but your actions hurt  everyone, including yourself.

Couldn't agree more.  I miss them both terribly.

Today, my daughter arrives

Today, my daughter arrives home for spring break, but my husband, who mostly lives with his parents, taking care of them, has not contacted me to tell me when or if he'll be coming here to see our daughter.  It breaks my heart.

I almost think it runs in the

I almost think it runs in the family. I flew my son, 1 yr old at the time, back to the US to MEET my husband's parents. They were so excited. I only had a weekend to spend, but was flying back in a month. My husband's dad spent the whole weekend hunting....opening season, and his homemaker Mom barely made time for him, insisting I put him in the playpen and relax. I was devastated and left early to spend Sun night with a friend:/ I refused to stay with them a month later. 

Vows of committment

I am married.  My husband isn't married. 

I think of myself as being

I think of myself as being married but not having a husband.  The worst of both worlds.

No Dr

Finally my husband who I'm currently seperated from was going to the Dr this morning and going to ask his Dr about possible ADHD issues. He got into the office & his Dr that he regularly sees and has seen for years (they've even taken vacations together) isn't there. So the ADHD doesn't get brought up. He says he'll go back and see his Dr or email him about it. I sure hope he does, but I won't hold my breath.........

work and time

His perception of time and work only values his own time and work.  He doesn't have a comprehension of teamwork or partnering or community.  Come to think of it, he didn't play on team sports....only golf.

here's another slug

I wish I was with someone as thoughtful and attentive as I've had to be with my ADHD wife...someone who spends the energy on me the way I've had to spend it on her, for a change.   :(

missing the trust

I miss the trust we had in the early years of our marriage. With 24-25 years of undiagnosed ADHD, where I learned I couldn't trust certain behaviors of his, plus his 3-year affair, my trust in HIM has been shattered. I feel guilty like I should "be over  it", but he's done very little to restore that trust. If the situation were reversed, I know that I know...HE would have left me years ago makes me sad also.

I have a new dog.  When DH

I have a new dog.  When DH arrived home from out-of-town job, he was informed that ND has had digestive system issues, including going inside the house.  DH commented that some of it might be from stress of being new.  DH proceeded to spend rest of the evening engaged in rough interactions with ND, who clearly (to daughter and me, at least) was anxious and agitated.  I had to take ND out five times during the night and also had to clean up several piles/puddles she left inside.  

 Feeling for the dog, but

 Feeling for the dog, but also feeling for you and daughter. Lack of emotional and/or compassionate empathy component can produce stress on many levels.

For instance my dh might feel cognitive empathy (stress of pup in new environment) but not feel emotional empathy (roughhousing will make pup's GI issues/anxiety heightened). I learned this difference from the author Andrew Solomon, who is an amazingly empathetic/perceptive speaker as well.

slug box

extremely embarrassed. At the supermarket, dh makes me cancel the transaction so he could finish the transaction himself. Everyone on line sees this as the sweetest thing and one of the cashiers lectures me indirectly about how every woman should be so lucky to let their man pay.... what they don't see it the reality of it:

What I see and live with daily is someone who is compulsively obsessive about being a control freak about the finances. He's got to be the big man. It doesn't matter if I'm paying from the same account, my ADD dh needs to make the transaction directly. All the women around me are paying for their groceries from a JOINT account. On their own. But he will not allow me to use our alleged joint account. Nor will he ever let me go ahead and pay like a free woman. He was fuming all the way home because I handed over the debit card at the register while he CHOSE to run back and pick out one last item (this is another sore point - holding up lines).

sorry... this is disjointed, I am feeling extremely useless and nobody can tell what it's like to be living in a state of control all the time. so mad and so disheartened. I didn't allow it/he won't allow it. 


Life together with ADHD: The

Life together with ADHD:

The in-between periods are manageable;

the good periods produce the happiest of highs;

the bad periods tho, are devastatingly low...

the non-ADHD mind goes through as much battering as the ADHD mind does

Now he tells me his entire

Now he tells me his entire anger was MY FAULT for getting stressed (and in his words "pissy") about being held up at the register because he had one last item to add.

How does this even make sense? He was the one who rushed/pushed the cart into the check out aisle, and then took off for one last item. Does he not understand that he made everyone - and I mean -- every one of the customers standing there behind me on line and the cashier rolling her eyes, waiting on him while he finished shopping?!

Just no awareness of what that "innocent" action of his generated. And again, no intelligent empathy to know that being stuck at the register stresses me out. If he wants to be rational and supportive, then please do not shove the cart into checkout and leave me there without the ability to pay without his "permission". sigh.

I told him his rationale made no sense. I was not going to accept that as solely something I caused.


should have picked up some Calgon. take. me. away.

does anyone notice they have conversations with themselves just to stay grounded? LOL :)


For 40 years I searched for answers about how to make HIM happy.  A few weeks ago he said to me, "What did you EVER do for ME?"  He doesn't even accept/remember what I have all done for him.  I tried too hard and it was not appreciated and didn't work. I gave too much.  Now I must look for answers about what i can do to have a happy self.

forgot again

My ADHD, DH came in the room and saw me looking for new eyeglass frames online. He says:

HIM: "Do you need new glasses?"

ME: "Yes, because mine are broken".

HIM:"When did you break your glasses?"

ME: "I didn't break them. You broke them the same morning you broke your own".

HIM: "No, I didn't". "I don't remember that".

ME: "Yes, it DID happen. It was in the kitchen. You tried handing me my glasses from the counter, but dropped them on the floor breaking them".

HIM: "I still don't remember that happening.  Look for some cheap ones".

(notice, he blamed ME first, instead of something else) tired of getting blamed for things I didn't do.

So exhausted

I am mentally, emotionally and physically getting the life sucked out of me! This emotional vampire that hides in my husband  is so explosively unpredictable, a double-dirty fighter and blames me for all that he says and does. Yet, if I deign to have a "weak" moment and express myself, heaven help me, the sky is falling in on HIM and I find myself in the midst of a 5 year olds abusive temper tantrum, filthy names and accusations but, it's all trapped in a 52 year olds body. My sweet Lord Jesus, help me to not just cope, but to learn how to function in this destructive situation so I can be healthy too! AMEN!!!

slug box

My ADD dh can compliment me all he wants in that canned fashion of his but it's the actions that don't ever match. Not only am I firmly entrenched in an ADD environment at home, I believe he has Narcissistic tendencies as well (because he lacks any significant empathy - choosing to be angry than to feel compassion). 

Nobody else ever suspects it, because to all our family and friends, it just doesn't "sound like him".... so I end up being perceived negatively by those I try to open up to.

The aloneness of this truth is a quiet desperation of mine 24/7.

I'm learning to be gentle with myself. He's been invited somewhere without me and he's jumping at the opportunity. It's the same place I've been asking him to take us for years and years, only to be met with excuses and arguments. I told him to just go and plan it himself but please do not bother me with talking about it constantly. It's not as if he wants me there with him, so why rub it in my face for days on end. I won't allow that. It will only cause me to become goaded to the point of an outburst.

Money woes

Dear DH- Our children went on a spring break trip with your parents because I can neither afford to go anywhere or take the time off work (paid hourly) thanks to you losing another job last year and not providing much income this year. The large check as a gift from my parents has to be used to pay our mortgage and other bills instead of paying off our debt, buying new couches, taking a trip, etc. I am so tired of not having money and saying no to our children about every single thing they want to do. They don't ask for much. In fact, our son is trying to convince me that his holey shoes are just fine and that he doesn't need a new pair :(  Man up and take care of your family!!!!!!


I wish I would have known

In the beginning it all seemed so small and trivial. When I first moved in with my undiagnosed ADHD husband I took care of all getting bills payed. Over the first year I asked him repeatedly to help me, but they always ended up late so I stopped asking.  He was so emotionally attentive and supportive, I couldn't have everything, right?  He worked full time while I was in school/grad school, so this could be my responsibility. It was fair, right? Then he had to quit his job because he was afraid he was going to get fired for the way his boss was "setting him up" to look like he "wasn't getting his projects done". He took a 25% pay cut. An already tight budget gets smaller. He's still finding himself, right? We were very young, it all seemed so normal for the ups and downs of life. Then I learned about the hyper focus the wrong way. Since we were married almost ten years ago, he has spent more time unemployed than employed, completely unaware and seemingly unconcerned about my feelings.  He's angry and defensive with any hint of negative emotion.  We/ he has been in counseling for over a year, but I don't see that any improvements have been made. I do all the routines that need to get done for our children, and I wish that I could play and be free with them.  Honestly, I just look forward to moments that I am completely alone.  I look around at a life I don't recognize as my own.  I can see all the insanely stupid decisions I made to end up here.  I'm so exhausted.

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

Slowly we got here

Bit by bit by bit, day by day by day, week by week by week it happened.  Slowly.  And then one day we wake up to find ourselves. . . . . . . exhausted.  LOL!  I'm so Exhausted :)


SlugWanted to jump on an


Wanted to jump on an auction online

Had to answer 20 questions whether or not i was making the right decision and the who what when where why and how of that item

By the time i got back online, item was sold to someone else

Story of my life.... to co exist w ADD means to be left in the dust many times in ones lifetime

Sometimes i feel like it would be better if a ton of manure dropped on my head would be the easy way out :)



So when I chided him for the unfortunate delay (meaning it's laughter that softens the repressed anger so the other person doesn't feel bad) -- I'm met with a rage attack and immediately he turns the table so that it is "ALL YOUR FAULT". He says "sorry" but in a "it-has-nothing-to-do-with-me" tone to it.

It's not the incident itself. Gosh, I'm over that. 

It's my spouse's blatant lack of awareness of how disappointed I felt. If he had missed a good opportunity, he would have absolutely have had a conniption. If I knew my spouse was disappointed, I would be neutral or at least try to make him feel better about other opportunities, even if he was sorely disappointed and vented. I would not lash out at him in retaliation just to make myself feel better. And of course it's all in hindsight that I should have done such-and-such but is it truly so hard for the ADD mind not to take everything as an offense to them that I have to second guess every thing they'll do or respond to as I live and breathe?


We both try hard.... Lord

We both try hard.... Lord knows we both try so hard to love and care for each other. I never forget that. We really do love each other and we're trying hard.

You get what you tolerate.

You get what you tolerate.

Emotion is the glue that binds us to others and the spice of life. I can no longer be quiet and forgiving and accepting of unacceptable situations. I am going to spend time with people who give me a reason to feel alive and vibrant.

I just thanked my husband for

I just thanked my husband for depositing his pay into the bank; the last time he did so was one month ago.  He probably wouldn't have done so if I hadn't asked him to.  It would be nice if my husband ever thanked me for doing something.  

I want a divorce but I can

I want a divorce but I can not afford to live alone with my child on my meager salary. I'd need two jobs plus I have an anxiety disorder (since I was a teenager). It's super hard because husband is absolutely not aiding me with money etc. I am on my own as it is and if I need to go on welfare I wouldn't qualify anyway, and he'd make me do everything. I always have to answer the phone for him and do every little thing he doesn't want to do.


I cannot watch TV on the weekends because every single one of the channels are taken up to DVR/record soccer games. Who watches 10 hours of soccer backlog a day?? He has a queue dating from last month and he is watching them in order. I cannot watch until one of the channels is freed up, or whenever a soccer match is over, or when he shuts off his own TV (which is never). Funny thing is, he'll be watching last weekend's recordings a month from now.... arghhhh

This is my first visit to

This is my first visit to this forum and I don't know whether to feel hopeful or defeated. I'm so so so tired of him. He is missing out on the best of me that is for sure. 

Happy anniversary to me (not)

Happy anniversary to me (not).  Today is our 29th wedding anniversary.  I will be alone all day, my husband will not communicate with me (because he never does when he is away from our home), I will spend time on projects for my job (I've gotten behind, because I spent the fall and winter doing all household and family tasks and several freelance projects, to keep house, children, and finances afloat), and I'm getting sick, again (I'm nearly always sick these days; I'm under constant stress because I have no back-up).  Oh, and this marks I don't know how many thousands of days that I've been depressed.  

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

Hugs to you


Hugs to you again and again.  I so get it.  

I followed my spouse to the altar for prayer today, after he asked, "Will you come with me?"  

He said he is angry.  I said my marriage is dead.

My faith is strong.  A marriage takes me and him and God.  

Hugs to you.  Take gentle care of yourself today.


My feelings exactly

It will be 14 years this July, so I can only imagine what double that would leave me feeling. I hope you were able to do something for yourself. I have recently started seeing a therapist on my own who said that I need to try and plan something fun for us to do. I don't think she gets that I don't even want to be around him at all, let alone try and have a date. So, I hope you at least did something for you.

The day of my anniversary

The day of my anniversary actually turned out fine, after I got through a bit of feeling sorry for myself in the morning.  I got through a satisfying amount of work, I finished reading a book, I cleaned up more.  My husband did call, late, and I didn't answer the phone.  I figured he'd say something about our anniversary and I could either tell the truth and say that our marriage stinks (in which case he'd get upset because I wasn't saying good things about our marriage) or I could lie.  I hate to lie.

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

25th to the 30th


I planned our 25th wedding anniversary for MONTHS.  I shared my idea with my spouse.  25 days of celebration.  Each day we would do something.  Fly a kite.  Find a constellation.  Go get an ice cream cone. etc.  It did not turn out well.  He just wouldn't/couldn't participate in one single thing.  We planned to take the RV for a few days on the actual date of the anniversary.  My spouse had put off some necessary RV repairs.  The day we were supposed to leave, I suggested we postpone until the RV was road ready.  He insisted it was OK and we left without the repairs getting completed.  Is it any wonder - -  the RV broke down.  He insisted to try fix it on the run.  So, we limped along, had no generator, so no electricity nor heat. I pleaded and tried to insist we turn around before it was a totally ruined vacation, and go when the RV was fixed.  It was a mess.  He cried and cried because he was so sorry  - but he wouldn't do anything different.  Had to be his way.  That day, I knew this marriage was in really big trouble.  A couple gets but one 25th anniversary. Why couldn't he take time to fix the RV before we left?  Why couldn't he even do a tiny little thing with me each day, especially after I had been sharing my special idea with him, and my friends and family for months.  Why couldn't he listen to my pleading to turn around and salvage the trip?  All he seems to remember about the whole fiasco is, "I said I was sorry.  Why can't that be enough?"   So the intensity of finding the answer to happiness and contentment in my marriage has been really high for 5 years, and REALLY intense for the past 3.  

My 25th was horrible too

I had been looking forward to our 25th anniversary for many years. We NEVER had any anniversary parties, or went anywhere, or did anything. I always bought him something and a card, and he forgot most of the time. I never received any gifts. But on our 25th, my husband was having an affair with a young girl 26 years younger than him. She was 22, we were both 48. It was disgusting and SO hurtful. He STILL has never admitted how much pain it caused me......just wanted it to "go away". But, you can never get back those milestone dates. We just passed 31, and sometimes I feel like I"m the idiot. why did I stay? why didn't I do something else? So many questions.

I should have known

Dh took the kids to see his grandma who just got out of the hospital and lives and hour away (and down the street from his own parents). My kids are 8 and 6 and left right after school at 3:30 (and they had all the stuff with them to make dinner for her.) At 9:50 p.m., I called to see where he was at. I was praying that he was down the street. Nope, just left a few minutes ago. But don't worry, the kids are asleep in the car and they will get home. And when I sigh and am silent, he hangs up on ME like I have no reason to be pissed. So, they will get home close to 11 on a school night. So, he is Mr. fun for letting them stay up and watch tv at grandma's, while I have to be the responsible one worrying about them being tired tomorrow. 

Sometimes I feel like I'm

Sometimes I feel like I'm married to a mentally retarded 10 year old with incessant irrational temper tantrums.   ...sigh.    I had a dream last week that he had been cheating on me and I was completely devastated by his betrayal, yet felt some excitement about my upcoming life without him.

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

The reality


After struggling so long, searching for how I can improve my marriage, I gotta admit that deep inside my heart and soul is that little bit of me who also feels some excitement of starting a new life by leaving him behind.  

I do not know - today anyway - if that is a good thing, or a bad thing.


Grrr's picture

The fleeting fantasy

From time to time I think I have a part of me that wants to just leave too. To start fresh, peace filled lives where nothing gets lost, I know where everything is, I am not walking in eggshells and i am not getting rushed around all the time. Where real conversations are had and I am treated like a woman. Cherished and cared for.

we must have had the same dream!!

I swear to you that I had a dream like this too last night!last night a big group of friends were together and I walked in on the men discussing how they would hang out with me, but not him anymore. I finally got out of them that he cheated on me. I also felt like I finally had a clear cut reason to leave him and was sadly thrilled about that.
Grrr's picture


I have often felt the same thing too. I saw a comment that mentioned the words "mildly retarded" it is so frustrating and angering at times!

I've survived and overcome

I've survived and overcome and even, a few times, triumphed over challenges in my life.  I would have been happy for these to be shared (with my husband) achievements, but they're not:  they're all things I've done on my own.  We not only have the negative things that diminish the marriage's value but also don't have shared positive things that could have increased its value and strength.  Sad.

The number of times my

The number of times my husband thanks me are so few as to be statistically insignificant from zero.  No manners?  Or ashamed because I do so much and he does so little, and I always thank him when he does something for me?

Of course

DH took our dryer apart over a week ago. He ordered new parts, but not enough of some piece. The extra pieces came yesterday, but guess who can't find where he put them????

boilergirl...same thing here

I go through the very same thing with my ADHD husband. He does this ALL the time, to where I've  come to expect that everything is going to be put together  wrong, backwards, upside down, inside out, or totally broken.  AND.......NEVER, EVER read the directions. I used to DREAD the boxes that read "some assembly required". I could put it together  right, but DH wouldn't let me put the things together because, HE HAD TO DO IT HIMSELF. No matter WHAT the item is/was, the thing gets put together wrong, or not at all, AND like you said....."He can't find the pieces".  I laughed out loud with that one, because I've lived through the same thing. LOL Sorry, don't mean to poke fun, it only means I can RELATE to this.

Grrr's picture

Been getting posts to my email...

I'm not sure if people are talking directly to me or replying to one of my posts or to someone else's? Can someone clarify for me? On my email it says Hi Not Understanding This Syndrome(NUTS), ___________ commented in SLUG BOX THREAD..... Is it just telling me there is a new comment?

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

You can follow the link

Not Understanding this. . . .,

The e-mail alerts you to the fact that someone has posted another comment in a thread you had previously posted.  The Slug Box thread is a long one, so if you ever commented on any of the posts, you will be notified there is a new post in the thread.   Seems most posters here try to address their comment directly to the person they are responding.  

It does get a tad confusing at times figuring out who is saying what to whom :)

After a while you will get used to it

Resigned2B's picture

I'm sorry...

I'm guilty of responding instead of starting a new thread. If anyone can fix it I'd appreciate it! 

Hi, yes the email link is

Hi, yes the email link is just a notification of (any) replies to the thread.

The Slug Thread was mainly started for members (both AD/HD and non-AD/HD) to drop off a post without getting into discussions. Just kind of "dropping the slug off" and taking it off one's chest.

However I'm guilty of answering or commenting on people's posts, including following up on my own here!

If anyone wants to begin a discussion or branch out from a post here, much better off to start a new thread to keep it comprehendible. 

can't you just freaking clean up after yourself?

Long story short, my child was sick and in a pinch I asked my ex husband (with untreated ADHD) to come over and stay with him while I went to work. My child prefers to be at my house if possible, for a variety of reasons. 

Tough to describe how much of a mess this man-child created in my house in 8 hours. Seriously. I walked in and just bit my tongue, because if I said anything, I would be once again be told that I was ungrateful and that next time he would just not "help" me if I were going to criticize him after he watched our son all day. To this day, it amazes me that he considers being a parent "babysitting" or "doing me a favor." 

How can a grown-ass man, who comes from a family of very hardworking people, be so oblivious? Why can't he just freaking clean up after himself? His own place is disgusting. Dirty dishes sit there for days. I am not a neat freak, but I just can't understand how someone can bear to live like that. Ugh! At least I don't have to share a living space with him any longer. Sigh...





His own house is in such disarray (so dirty that it smells bad), th

Resigned2B's picture


Dear Lynn,

Your post is both funny and frustrating at the same time.

I just wanted to share with you a story from another ADHD site. It was posted by an ADHDer who lamented over her plight. She was hurt that her husband 'just didn't get it'. The horror of having ADHD. She said it had taken her TEN years just to learn how to pick up her morning towel when she showered! My thought, of course, went to her husband. How does it take ten years for a FULL GROWN adult to pick up one towel each day! 

There were other things she found herself needing understanding for as well, in addition to needing stickers for, a celebration over, all just as trivial as the towel. I logged in and gave her perspective on how it is for ten years to pick up all of those towels, clean out all of the closets she was paralyzed in touching, etc..

It was very hard to be sympathetic! At least she was on the site trying to figure out anything about her issues. Sympathy was probably not going to fly well...

Good luck since you are connected by your son. He likely has it as well but you will have more compassion for him and charts and stickers for a child aren't nearly as overwhelming. ;)

I&#039;m So Exhausted's picture

Why we are here.

I read this comment on FaceBook today, and decided it is perfect to explain why I am here:

"We read - to know that we are not alone."

Homework SLUG

My hubby and daughter are both ADHD.  I got a call from my elderly dad last night while helping the daughter with homework, so I asked hubby to take over the homework while I ran over to help dad with a household issue.  Before I left, I put all the work to be done in a neat pile and gave my husband the instructions...  Daughter says "where's my field trip paper?"  I told her that I didn't know, but that we'd find it together when I returned.  After that, both she and my hubby were focused on the field trip paper instead of getting homework accomplished.  As I'm walking out the door I yelled "Turn down the ADHD, people!  Get to work!"

I wish it was that easy!

Resigned2B's picture

Homework Slug...

Dear Momma,

I know it won't work but it will be my new catch-phrase.  "Turn down the ADHD, people!"

Maybe it will help ME! ;)

Love it! new phrase

Momma1173. Love your phrase. Will use it myself. "Turn down the ADHD, people". LOL.......You made my day. :):):)

Perfect Phrase

Ha ha ha! Add Autism Spectrum Disorders and you've got my house, too! And I plan on using that phrase!  :)   lol

ADHD Slug Drop <3

If I could afford a housekeeper, accountant, and spare house across the street, it would take one of each to fix this mess.

I told my husband that our

I told my husband that our daughter might be home this weekend, so that he can come see her if he wants to.  I also said that I did not want him to use the Internet while in the house.  He replied with a very short and sarcastic message.  He still hasn't apologized or acknowledged any wrong-doing.  I feel as though I've been kicked in the stomach.  I'm now officially afraid of him.

Resigned2B's picture


Dear Rosered,

Did you leave part of your story out? What did your husband do???

Sorry, I've reported on this

Sorry, I've reported on this in other parts of the forum.  My husband and I mostly live apart, me in our family home, him with his elderly parents, who pay him to take care of them.  Last time my husband was home, he illegally downloaded a movie from the Internet. I discovered this when, a few days later, I received a letter from my Internet provider (the Internet service is in my name only) saying it had been notified by a copyright holder of an illegal download.  I don't do stuff like that.  It could only have been my husband.  The copyright holder could sue me.  I'm appalled.  Being sued could endanger my law license; and more important, I would never break the law in a way that would get someone else in trouble.  Never.  When I told my husband about the letter, he scoffed at my concern and did not apologize.  I feel that I can only protect myself by requesting that he not use the Internet when he's here.

Resigned2B's picture


Now I get it! I'm so sorry! You are an attorney? Isn't there anything you can do? I'm sure you've tried. Can you file charges? Maybe at least stop being so nice and allowing him to ever come into your home. Change the locks!

Oh, it just sounds like my life, a tangled web of lies. So many and so consistently that you hardly know where to go back to in time - in order to start unraveling all of them.  

I have two grown boys with their father's same ADHD. I love them dearly. I don't know how to look their future brides in the face knowing what they'll be in for...

Rosered what do think causes this type behavior?

Rosered how do you feel about these kind of actions? Do you think they are being done in a spontaneous way, where they really do not think through the process, Is this wrong?...Or do you think its just an individual act of having no convictions about right or wrong? My wife will do stuff like this, and I will just look at her like what's up w/ this? She laughs and calls me the rule follower...It just amazes me how she can be so concerned about our grown children, and others...But be so unrespectful of other things...I'm not her judge, but I've often wondered if it is related to her add...or just self-serving. Anyway, i just wondered if you had a thought on the subject?

Good question. I think, but

Good question. I think, but do not know for sure, that it's a combination.  First, my husband doesn't think through his actions; but when I draw his attention to the behavior, he makes clear that he doesn't think that what he's doing is wrong.

Resigned2B's picture

To add to that?

My spouse just took out a loan against his sister's trust fund in the amount of $120K WITHOUT TELLING ME! And then he lied to me about it! The money is now spent back into his company hit hard by the economy  - UNSECURED!

Then, he borrowed nearly everything out of our 401k WITHOUT TELLING ME! It went to the same company, again, UNSECURED! We're nearly sixty with negative money to retire on! Is he a liar? YES! Did he think he could play this 'adrenaline charged' game with our finances because of his ADHD? Yes! He thrives on it!!!

Is this pattern of walking on the edge of life because of his ADHD? Yes!

Could I have done ANYTHING about it? No! I was busy raising six children, two with ADHD themselves. Now they're grown and gone and this recklessness with our future is now on the table... I have ZERO way to support myself with six grown children to prove it. So, once again, swallow hard, it's the only choice I have at this point in my life... I should have financially secured myself when I had the chance years ago. Instead? I trusted him...

That is awful!  My husband

That is awful!  My husband neglects money matters but doesn't spend irresponsibly, for the most part.  I consider behavior like your husband's to be abusive.

Resigned2B's picture

Me, too...

When I called him on it this is how he justified his behavior in an e-mail:

"I know these latest issues are all on me.  But you talk about shame.  All I get from you is how inadequate I am and how I always fall short.  I'm sorry about who and what I am.  I am doing my best and it is never good enough.  Go ahead and get an attorney.  You can have everything. [now of course, there IS nothing to have]  I just want some peace in my life.  I'm sick of all the stress [the stress is because of his lies now unraveling] and trying to keep the family together and the company together.  I face all this alone because [alone only because he isolates himself with his lying] I never do anything right.  I hope your future gets better with someone else." [Yes, apparently I'm very marketable on the single circuit at age 60!]


Resigned2B's picture

Exact quote!


I did not rewrite a word of his e-mail. I did add the words in bracketed italics. Your expression is classic! It is how I feel nearly every time I read these ADHD situations! There really isn't a way to describe it but BREATH TAKING!

My heart goes out to EVERYONE who faces this! I don't mind helping with his ADHD and that of my two sons, but I do mind being the hated target! There is simply no way to win... :<


As much as I believe in unity and sharing in a marriage, I think if lying and irresponsible behaviors are present in the relationship. A person can't afford to not protect themselves financially...I do not share my money (she has no access to my accounts) w/ my wife of six years just because of this very reason you have posted...She has a good job...but she can be very unwise in dealing w/ money...I retired at 56 last year...So I can't afford for her to drag us down...She just refinanced a house, she agreed to sell before we married, but she just can't get rid of anything...that's the reality of it all...So I just have to be wise, I try to be open about things if she asks, but she is so independent, she want ask me much, because I think she is afraid I will ask her :) So Funny...got to laugh, to keep from crying sometimes....

Resigned2B's picture

Too late...

Thirty years and six kids later it's a little late for me to 'save myself' financially. There is no money left. We are $200K in debt now. Half of nothing is still nothing. When he says 'take everything' he knows he is completely safe since there is no more 'everything' to take! :((

Starting a career at this age, with not much experience behind me seems just as fruitless as it does to stay... 

Bless you!

You are a bigger man than I am for staying...I probably shouldn't post that, but, it ticks me off to hear these stories...Hopefully his business will recover and you can start saving again...Messing w/a 401K at y'alls age is not wise...Oh well did not mean to stir the pot...With six grown children watching...hopefully they will take care of Mom :)

Resigned2B's picture


Dear Se Ur Self, 

There is no worry here about 'stirring the pot'. As you can imagine the pot is boiling over by now! It is SO stunning to me that I come here and search the boards for anything that has or might work. He doesn't seem to care if we get divorced because he doesn't truly believe he is wrong nor does he believe he will lose anything of 'value' if he never sees me again. I don't know what hurts more...

It has all just hit the fan in the last month. Every financial lie that I uncover he says he sorry for. Then another one will come out and he's sorry for that. These are HUGE lies! But the entire time he's just thankful that haven't uncovered the others. Then, when I get angry enough, he tells me to just leave him. It makes me wonder if there is someone else on the side???

As he says, " time will tell"...

Sounds right!

Same here rosered, my wife doesn't think through things either and when I point it out she too, will defend it...She will always make an excuse for it, and If I try to reason w/her...Like Dear...What part of that no trespassing sign is not clear to you? She will just get mad...and end up turning it around some how because of the look on face or my tone LOL...so I have learned (learning :)) to just not challenge her...Can't baby an adult...That opens a whole other can of worms :)

Quick to judge


Me: Approaching with a fresh trash bag for the can that he is presently emptying; the spirit of cooperation at work.

Response from Him: “You obviously know more than me about every topic and your way is the right way to do everything.” + eyeroll

I normally don't drop stuff in the slug box... but here goes...

After a wonderful Mother's Day weekend, where my husband was an absolute prince of a guy... it's back to square one again this morning... We had a fire in the fireplace last night. My husband closed the flue before he went to bed- but apparently the fire was not totally out, because when we woke up in the morning, the house was filled with smoke. Our daughter has a bad cold right now and my son has asthma that requires daily medication. Aside from these health issues to consider,  the smoke was just unpleasant- smelly and disgusting.

 I said to my husband,  "Going forward, let's make sure that we don't close the flue unless the fire is totally out. That could have ended really badly". Rather than acknowledging the truth in that and agreeing we would both be more vigilant about that (which would have put an immediate end to the matter) my husband denied that this had the potential to end badly and then blamed ME for not smelling the smoke sooner and not going down to investigate sooner.



I know you have an issue and

I know you have an issue and you have recognized that, which is a step in the right direction. But I am so tired from keeping everything together that the thought of having to expend even more of my precious little energy to keep you together is scary.

Resigned2B's picture

On The Verge


When do we get a break from catching all the ADHD balls of life that they throw at us? Pretty soon our own life just becomes an exhausting game of dodge-ball. When we can't keep? It is we who have failed...to catch...

Putting it in perspective

Sending my severely ADHD, pothead husband (separated) off to my severely ADHD son's university (I cannot go bc the other kid needs me home) to help our son not flunk out of college this week...feels like sending The Joker to help Mr.MaGoo on a U.N. peacekeeper mission.  Having actually uttered this thought from the depths of my despairing soul, I shall now sit at my computer and wait for G-d   (as best my agnostic brain can imagine him/her) to smite me.



You Brightened My Day

You have a wonderful sense of humor...please don't lose that in your despair.  I do so appreciate it and would hate to think that you might lose the ability to share it with others as you did here. ( a bit of light in the dark ) You have one fan at the very least.  Thank you.

Take care


You made me smile too;) If we

You made me smile too;) If we don't laugh, we have to scream or cry;p

The bright side

KARMA must be for real.  Please.  That's the one hope keeping me going today 

Resigned2B's picture


Truly, what goes around; comes around! ;)


Hubby knows it's laundry time and it's his task so I asked are you doing the laundry (since he was getting his shoes on to go out and we're visiting my mom so have to go to a laundromat). He says, "Eventually." and I said "when?" and he said, "When I decide it's time."

My life in a nutshell. I wish his family could hear him say this stuff, maybe they'd have a better understanding of why I'm so anxious and frustrated.

Resigned2B's picture


Urgh! I'm assuming your mother-in-law is still living? If so, then trust me, she knows! She had to raise this man.

As the mother of six, two of which have ADHD, and wife to an ADHDer, there is NO possible way that the family doesn't know. This is NOTHING new for them. I plan on sending sympathy and support cards on a regular basis to my two 'yet to be' daughters' in-laws.

My own mother-in-law has passed away now. But I will never forget the look on her face when she questioned me on why there was no Mother's Day card for her. I told her that her son (my husband) and I had come to an agreement on family gifts of every kind. I would do gifts and acknowledgments for my family members and he would do the same for his own family members. Each of us would sign both our names to the gifts we did. This way I was not worried about doing everything for EVERYONE!

When my mother-in-law heard this, a deep hurt came over her face. (BTW, I wish I had been more understanding at the time) It was a look of 'Oh no!' I had to beat out most of the gifts I received for the first twenty some years of his life and now my daughter-in-law is not going to step in and rescue me!

My point is - she knew JUST what to expect and JUST why I had insisted on this arrangement. I put the responsibility of gifts for his own family back on him, where it belonged. She knew my own family would be WELL taken care of while my husband would, as usual, space out his own family. At the time I had a smug feeling of getting even with her for not teaching him better in his youth. Now? Not so much... She probably went through the same theatrics and frustration when she raised my husband that I have gone through with my own ADHD boys. Always structuring yet rarely ever seeing true initiative.

There isn't one of our children that doesn't see how hard the symptoms of ADHD hit our family. We all love our ADHDers very much. Everyone has learned when to 'swallow hard' and realize there is ZERO we can do but be patient, try and set boundaries, etc.. My other adult children have lives they can escape to. As the mother and wife, I do not. It is constant treadmill of dividing up responsibilities, hoping they get done in any kind of timely manner; knowing they will probably not, coming in with 'well done' stickers for the rest of your life, trying desperately not to be resentful, and loving them (and yourself) despite it all.

It literally hurts to read your post. It makes me want to volunteer to do your laundry! ANYTHING to help you not feel the pain of 'swallowing hard' yet again. My guess is that there isn't a single poster here that doesn't respond in the same way. We ALL should write a collective book!!!

Your wish that they could hear your husband? They did! For ALL the years you weren't there with him yet... If they act like they don't understand they are in classic denial!



mother in law

My mother in law told me early in our marriage, "I know, if your marriage doesn't work, it isn't your fault".  She was not smiling or laughing when she said this.  I didn't accept what she meant at the time.  I spent decades trying to change myself to be better able to have a good relationship with dh. It took me decades to stop denying and understand.   I was actually trying too hard.  

Don't give yourself away to someone who does not care enough to let you know by his actions that he cares.

Resigned2B's picture

It's so sad...

It may have been different with more understanding and communication from loving family. :<

We are a hard sell when blinded by love...