Tax Day Frustrations

Hi! A little about me first, since this is my first post.  I'm nearing 30 and have been happily unmarried to my ADHD man for six years and change.  I know this site is all about ADHD and marriage, but not everyone can marry, and some of us choose not to.  Almost everything is still germane to any long-term relationship with an ADHD partner, so I've been finding the site very helpful!

I feel luckier than many on here.  I did not have to fight my SO to accept his ADHD - when we began seeing each other, he already knew he had it.  I DID have to fight him to get medication, but he does take it and it seems to help with his symptoms.  He is self-employed and supports our living expenses while I go through professional school.  While he does not make the kind of money he could if he were a bit more hyperactive-ADHD and less attention-deficit-ADHD (like his crazily energetic father is), he works and earns enough for us to live on at the moment.  He also is pretty good about doing chores around the house, but only if I ask and point them out to him.  Dividing chores helped our chore disagreements.  He does the dishes, period.  I do the bathroom, period.  When there are dishes in the sink, it's obviously his problem and when the bathroom's gross it's obviously mine, so we don't have the I-did-dishes-six-times-this-week-it's-your-turn fight.  Although he is happy to leave dishes festering for days at a time, which annoys me and on occasion I'll just do them.  I generally do the cooking, and I feel constantly irritated when I get home from a day of classes and work to start our dinner and I can't even fill a pot.

One of the reasons (and I have many, but I won't get into the non-germane ones) that I do not want to marry is that I know my way around ADHD, and I know that I have to keep my boundaries for our relationship to work.  I grew up raised by an ADHD mother, and two of my siblings are medicated for ADHD right now.  I think one of the reasons my relationship with my loving, caring SO has worked for us is because I have been around people with ADHD all my life, and I have a greater tolerance than most for the difficulties that ADHD people unintentionally inflict on others.  I know how to wrangle people with ADHD, how to support and love them, and how to ask for things.  Most of the time we do well.  I know one of my difficulties is that I fear the blowback of my SO's inevitable fuckups, so I nag and nag and take on the stress of his responsibilities that he puts off until the last second.  I know keeping his problems as his problems and not letting them become my problems is a challenge, which is why I will never marry him or have children with him, despite our commitment to being partners for life.  It's a lucky thing that I do not want children, and that he is fine with not having them, because having children with a person that you cannot rely on as a co-parent would be my vision of hell.

At any rate, I'm writing today because tax day is always a problem in this house.  I get my taxes done at least a month ahead of tax day.  My SO literally JUST finished and closed out his browser, and it's 11 p.m. on the 15th.  It's not that he didn't see it coming.  I have been telling him for a month that it's approaching.  Almost every day I reminded him of how close tax day was getting.  His not taking care of his responsibilities gives me insane stress, because I have to keep track of my responsibilities AS WELL AS his responsibilities.  He resents it, he asks that I don't do it, he doesn't want to hear about it.  I don't like it, I wish he would just do his shit on time.  I know that I am adopting his problems.  But if he screws up his taxes or files late or whatever, the consequences affect my life as well.  As much as he likes to think he lives in a vacuum and the consequences of his stupid actions affect only him, it's just not true.

It always happens this way.  "Mr. DamnAmazon, we need to check out of the hotel by 11."  "Don't worry, we'll be fine," he says from the shower at 10:55.  We finally leave the hotel room at 11:02, and I'm so pissed I can't speak.  When we check out three minutes later, the desk gal gives us stink eye but lets it slide and doesn't charge us a late fee.  "See?  It was fine, and you were worked up for nothing," he says blithely.  And tonight: "Mr. DamnAmazon, it is 7 p.m. on tax day and you still haven't started doing your taxes.  NO, I do not want you to help me make dinner.  I want you to DO YOUR DAMN TAXES so I can stop stressing about your incompetence costing you and us."  He gives me a hurt and angry look and slams over to the computer to start.  Working WITHOUT A BREAK, he finishes at 11 p.m. and when he's done, it's the same thing.  "See?  It was fine, and you were worked up for nothing."  Never mind that if he hadn't started when I yelled at him, he would still be only halfway through.

This happens all the time and it's wearing me out.  He has such a long history of doing this...when his car was slowly falling apart from under him and it became abundantly clear that he needed to buy a new (used) car, he waited so long on it that his car literally stopped running as he was driving to go see the car his parents' told him their mechanic was selling (I looked for cars online, emailed him listings over and over, and he did NOTHING).  The mechanic knew he had my SO over a barrel, and overcharged him thousands of dollars on a bum car with a screwed-up title.  I had told him that when his car finally gave out, he could forget calling me for a ride because I wouldn't pick him up.  And I did not.  But I'm still mad that he wasted thousands of dollars that our cash-strapped household could have used and got a crap car with title problems in the process!

I'm tired of him pretending that the consequences of his actions only affect him, and pretending that I have no right to be angry at his behavior.  I am also tired of internalizing his problems, and getting angry and anxious every time he plays chicken with an expensive deadline.  Does anyone have advice about this?  Because it's probably the biggest problem we have as a mixed ADHD/non-ADHD couple.  I can handle the rest of it, most of the time.  But this?  It's a problem.

EDIT: I reread this and man, I sound angry and ungrateful.  Yes, I'm so grateful he addresses his difficulties and I'm grateful to have such a sweet and loving man in my life.  There is no one that compares to the level of love and kindness my SO puts out everyday to everyone.  And I'm grateful that he is supporting us financially.  I'm grateful I can pursue my degree because he is supporting us.  I'm grateful he offered to help me make dinner.  But I'm also very angry and frustrated by having to feel like his mother sometimes, so I'm not going to edit the language I used when I first typed this up.

Hmmm...have you guys ever

Hmmm...have you guys ever been to counseling? While I'm married to my ADHD hubby, I've found that counseling has made a tremendous difference in our relationship. And that's all you need right? A committed relationship. We'd probably be divorced by now if it wasn't for taking the time to see a counselor. We've gone from seeing her every two weeks to every 4 to 6 weeks. Even when we are fully stabilized, I think we will probably still see her every 8 to 12 weeks for maintenance. You got to do what you got to do. If you're strapped for cash, check with your local health department for references.

Otherwise, I don't have many suggestions. Because we're married, I file our taxes together, though I used to file us separately at one time. Before we were married, hubby always got his taxes in on time, though he went to H&R Block. So it's not an issue for us. Though I can relate to the hotel scenario. He has pulled that one before! Though we were staying in a nice hotel where you could check out via the TV, so at 10:59, I checked us out and prayed housekeeping wouldn't come barging in. Haha.

Don't feel bad about venting. We all do it. I didn't think you came across as ungrateful, just concerned for the trickle down effect a partner's actions have.

Hang in there.

Thanks for your support. 

Thanks for your support.  Yes, we've gone to counseling before and it helped somewhat, although the main purpose of those visits was a different issue.  We're unbelievably strapped for cash, but I may be able to access resources through the school.  My mister is incredibly resistant to going to see counselors, but if it's really bad, I'll see what I can do.

I truly feel for you, as I

I truly feel for you, as I also struggle with alot of frustration, watching my ADHD husband ignore an important task because it might involve harder work and most of the time, only accomplish the easier task.  Naturally, leaving the important tasks undone.  Taxes are a big problem with us!  We file jointly, but I am seriously considering filing separately next year.  I am STILL waiting for him to do his part on our taxes.  Every year, for as long as I can remember, our CPA, bless his heart, files the necessary extentions so my husband can put it off til the very last drop dead date.  He also has the similiar problem of putting off necessary maintenance and repairs to our vehicles until they reach the point of no return.  I have been forced to take care of my car as much as I can for my own peace of mind, if you know what I mean.  

We have had the same conversation about his non-actions affecting me, as well, but it has yet to sink in. 

Filing separately is probably

Filing separately is probably not a bad idea, although I don't know if his not doing his taxes would have legal ramifications for you as his legal spouse.  Sorry to hear you're also spinning your wheels on the non-actions affecting both partners.

Although it saddens me that I can't rely on him, I am glad that I know this.  I try to take charge of the things I can affect and let the rest go, but it's very difficult.  I guess it's all just a part of the price of admission for this relationship.  If I can let go of expectations of reliability, in return I can enjoy unbelievable love and kindness. 

My current MO is a variation of "trust but verify."  I delegate things to him that are important, but I always try to have a backup plan to get it done if and when he falls through.  I expect him to fall through, so when he doesn't, it's a pleasant surprise and something taken off my plate.  When he does fall through, I try not to become angry.  Instead I remind myself that I expected this and that I have a plan.

I think the most frustrating part of having an unreliable partner is their insistence that you rely on them and consider them reliable.  My SO gets hurt and defensive when he falls through and I whip out my backup plan with a matter-of-fact look on my face.  He doesn't like that I expect him to drop the ball.  He's getting better about facing the reality that he is unreliable, but it still sticks in his craw. 

I guess we are all bad about seeing and accepting our faults.  We'd be so much stronger if we properly knew ourselves and what we can expect from ourselves.