Update..of sorts...

First, my husband is over the IT dept for our city. Small city, but still a decent sized network. Long story short, few months back issues started happening with his servers and it has lead to the discovery of a fairly ugly hacking job and a REALLY ugly worm that he's worked 16+ hour days for WEEKS now trying to battle. Thanks to his ADHD/hyperfocus he would not consider seeking outside help and a couple of time stayed up for 48+ hours working on it. He looks HORRIBLE physically, is taking even less care of himself than before (eating, showering, etc), and has finally conceded that the time has come to call in help...although the help he has called (local company, Microsoft, Sophos) have been of very little help, he has at least started reaching out before he goes off the deep end. I'm so confused that I don't know what he's talking about..and one minute he'll tell me he figured it out, and got it off of his servers and the next minute he'll tell me he can't...and then there was the day last week when I got cussed out because he made it seem like he had quit his job ("I walked out and I'm never going back!") and I got upset...didn't say much, didn't cuss or fuss..just sat in silence, which was taken as me 'not being supportive'. He went back to the city a little later and continued to work on it, but he was still upset that I would not support his decision to quit because of how unhappy he is. He was doubted at first...and resents those who doubted him (me, his boss)...but truth of the matter is, he doubted himself..and it made it hard for us to believe him about how serious it is. He cannot tell a story about it and keep it on one track.

Yesterday was my birthday. He forgot. First time in 14 years together that he forgot. My daughter reminded him the night before..and tried a few times to pull him away from his computer to take her shopping to get me something (VERY important to her). Finally she broke down and cried so I took her myself and let her go in the store in the Mall and get me something. All day he spent in the den on his computer working. He was up at around 8 and didn't come to bed until prollie 3 a.m. or later. I stopped by the store and got gas for the grill and steaks..and stuff to make S'mores. I asked him to grill the steaks...he said he would...then kept giving me the "it'll be a minute" line. I started them myself and he came up to finish them. Ate and went back to the den. When we made a fire later I asked him to come join us and got a very "sigh" type "ok". He sat with us for 5 minutes and went back to the den. That was his extent of involvement in my birthday. He told me happy birthday several times...and was very nice...but it was not enough. And...the best part, as we all know, becasue of the ADHD I am pretty much screwed because if I dared express my disappointment, then I'm not being supportive of his 'work' issue...it would make him feel bad about himself, feel like he let me down yet again, and then he would be angry and blame me. This is on top of about 100 other disappointments lately where he's promised to make time for the family but has managed his time so poorly that it does not happen. Anything we do is clouded by the urgency in his demeanor to get home and get back on this task at hand. I do not for one minute discount how serious the issue is, but he can't give his family 2-3 hours of his f**king time one day a week? Really? I even said to him when we fought about it this weekend (broken promise to spend time with us Saturday) "can you honestly tell me that there is no way you could have been home a little earlier, gone to bed when you got home, and gotten up and spent a few hours with us..are you saying that would have been completely impossible?" "no, not when you put it that way...it wasn't..you're right. I'm sorry". He came home...but instead of going to sleep he spent 3-4 hours screwing around with his iPod that is infected with the worm as well. iPod!

I know he wants to find the fix to this...and I know he wants his life back...but I feel he's crossing far too many lines and is just absolutely unable to draw himself away from it enough to see that his family needs him too. I won't go into the entire story, but my education plans took a sharp turn for the worst this past week (had to give up the major I REALLY wanted and opt for the one that was originally supposed to just be a bonus degree..not what field i want to work in..to make use of some old credit hours) and he isn't even aware that it was a decison I made (and cried about for 3 days) because of his 'scare' when he told me he'd quit his job the other day. I am beginning to see how unreliable and unstable he is (something I have never experienced to such a degree with him in all of our 14 years!!) and I will be cutting my school short, graduating next spring, and going back to work in a field I do not want to...because he has pushed me so far that I feel I have no choice. I don't want my family to lose everything because he is out of control and refuses to admit it and get help. I do however feel that God is leading me to do this and that he will open doors for me I never even dreamed of and that somehow I will get to do something I enjoy doing. I plan on going back to school eventually to get my Medical Lab degree.

He isn't in the black hole anymore...he has checked back in and is sleeping upstairs again. He isn't the same man...and I'm not sure how much of it is this work issue and how much of it is other things (won't go into) that may have altered the course of our marriage forever. I see the man I fell in love with on occasion...but I am also completely alone to live my life without so much as a 'how was your day' from him. He has no idea about the major change and school situation because when I try and discuss it, he changes the subject. Dealing with everything on my own. We have ZERO conversations about anything other than him and his work. NOTHING. He has never, ever been so self absorbed....and again, I'm praying that is is just hyperfocus on the work issue and will resolve itself. It has not always been this way...we used to talk about anything and everything..for hours on end...and now he will literally cut me off mid-sentence and say "I have to go work on this" and just walk off and go to the den...when I am telling him something about school or the kids. Things he should care about. He forgot my birthday...not even so much as a card. I can't put into words how unimportant I feel to him right now. Won't even go into how INFURIATED he would be if his birthday went uncelebrated...believe me, I have learned the hard way through the years that it is to be a big deal or he will be furious for weeks. I got his present a few days AFTER his birthday the first year we were together...due to finances...and he made me feel like I was the worst person in the world. I worked part time and made $300 every 2 weeks..he asked for a $100 pair of sunglasses...

When the dust settles and the issue with work has been resolved...what is going to be left? I'm not angry...I'm just more and more numb to it all. I'd rather be angry..at least I would know it meant I still cared.

 

Sherri, that sucks

Sorry to hear about you having to change your major.  It really sucks that your husband wouldn't take enough energy off his hyperfocus to be there for you. Sometimes it feels like it really is all about them, doesn't it?

I wish I could say something that would make you feel better. Hugs to you.

so stressful...

Sorry Sherri.  That sounds awful.

Is there anyway to change back to the major you wanted?  He did NOT quit his job as it turned out, right?  He was just threatening to/wanted to or something?  If you can change back - do it.  I don't know anything about IT, but holy crow - what he's dealing with sounds monstrous.  It must be insanely difficult/stressful & scary.   Maybe he threatened to quit because he thought he would be getting fired?

I really hope this clears up and you can get back on the right track!

(((HUGS!!)))

 

 

No, he didn't quit...but it

No, he didn't quit...but it was so hurtful and so terrifying to me that it just solidified my belief that he is still spiraling out of control and may very well be headed in that direction. I have many theories, but in reality it doesn't matter what is going on with him, he is determined to do this his way and is convinced he'll lose his job over it if he cannot fix it...even though NO ONE has figured out how to clean up a PC infected with it yet. I changed my major so I can get out of school in Spring of 2012 instead of Summer 2013. I have to do something. I cannot sit back and let his ADHD destroy our lives. He won't consider meds, he won't go to the doctor..he would go to counseling but it won't do him any good at this point because he doesn't feel he needs it. He doesn't want it..he would only be going for me. He has threatened to quit...or proclaimed he was going to lose his job...almost everyday for the past 3 months. The more he dug, the more he found, the bigger he realized the issue was, the more the drama increased. He's had several episodes of staying up 48+ hours straight...working on it. I've begged him to work 18 hours if he wants, but to at least stop to sleep. It stresses me completely out and when he worked Sat-Mon afternoon last weekend is when he said he'd quit his job...after a 48 hour stint. He currently hasn't been to bed since yesterday a.m. going on 28 hours. The longer he goes, the worse he gets...and the less I want to even be in the same state with him. HE DOES THIS TO HIMSELF.

I knew he hadn't quit his job when I made the decision to go with the change of major...his tantrum basically pushed me over a ledge and I felt someone (God) was screaming at me to just trust him and do this...I know it will all work out.

Part of this resonates with

Part of this resonates with me Sherri. I too have witnessed the steady increase in my DHs symptoms, detachment and others. Its like the more I try to stay even and not react in the same old way, the worse he got. For example, he talks for hours--literally hours if I listened that long-- about how great he's doing at work and all the nice things people say about him. At times when I could get a word in, I'd start to say something funny or whatever about my day and he talked right over me as if I wasn't speaking at all. And it got worse and worse...like your husband's hyperfocus seems to be as well. There are other things that have gotten worse too, not worth detailing, but it is a pattern Im hearing you describe, that I too am experiencing. For my DH & I, I have to conclude that me changing our dynamics is sort of pushing him over the edge or at least stressing him out in ways he may or not realize and making him worse. Or maybe our relationship has deteriorated so far that this is his coping mechanism or acting out the pain and the process of detaching. ? Im not sure, I wish I knew. I'm so glad you can see a plan and a purpose in these recent turn of events. That is something I've clung to when things seemed too big or too hard for me. Hang onto it and don't let go.

The other day I was talking

The other day I was talking and he just started speaking as if I wasn't saying a word. I finally said "I was talking and you just talked right over me" and he stopped talking. Another thing is that if we do, on a very odd occasion, discuss anything other than work he will disagree with me on every.single.thing.I.say. It is so obvious that he wants to disagree with me that my 12 y/o said to me, without a WORD from me about it, "why did he want to just disagree with everything you said?" Not fighting, necessarily...he just has to disagree with my opinion or feelings. My son's aide recently had her first grandbaby. Her son and DIL are being very stingy with the baby. I was explaining how they would probably regret that, babies need grandparents, she was such a good woman and would be such a great grandmother, and he takes the stance that it is their baby and their right to do what they want. I know he isn't emotionally invested in my son's aide like I am, I love her dearly...so I felt his 'opinion' was just purely to disagree with me...there was absolutely ZERO compassion for how upset she was about not getting to see her grandbaby. This is just one of many examples...most of the subjects I bring up either somehow get changed immediately or he makes it about him. I was trying to explain that our son's seizures are increasing...and he goes off on some tangent about how he probably got ahold of some chicken he left laying around (he cannot have gluten..and it was breaded) or something. He didnt' ask me if he had gotten ahold of it, just goes off about how it was probably his fault because he left it in the backseat of the car with him. He did not get ahold of it...but it was as if in his mind he did, just so it could somehow be about HIM and not our son and his seizures. I have never in my life seen him act in such a way...never. :-(

He is trying to "not fail" and you are changing the game

From the ADHDers side.. how great he is doing at work could be trying to console you that he is doing well and trying hard and at the same time helping him not feel like a failure.. Shutting him out could make him feel you don't care about what he does all day or that he is trying.. Other people's comments validate that he isn't making it up in his own head so you will believe he is trying and doing well as he may feel you don't believe his assessments . He could be trying to be "Successful" at something.. If you are changing your reactions he may be unclear how to respond to you and therefore distant until he understands the "New Rules of the Game".. what he knows is different and unstable and that is a VERY scary place..

At least this is how I felt and what was going on for me and might give you some insight into his thoughts...

Numb...

I'm really sorry to hear this Sherri. You have been working so hard to understand what is going on in you and you husbands lives. The IT issue sounds like it is way more than one guy can handle. He needs more eyes on this, people he knows would be best too. I also know that Not being on meds would hurt my efforts regarding a big project. Un-Medicated, the Over-Whelming where do I start phase lasts too long and it is hard for me to know Where to start. Medicated, I can get through this phase faster and begin to break things down into components I can deal with.

I have never been at a Hyper-Focus like you are describing. I had to manage a companies conversion from one accounting system to a new one. I was hired to do this and manage the new system and it's development. During this period I was stressed beyond belief and really feared failing, so I think I can relate to the situation. I don't think I ever completely disconnected though. Forgetting your birthday is inexcusable, IMO, and I really feel bad for you. It would devistate/PO my DW if I forgot her birthday.

I wish I had something to say that could help, but obviously the job must have him in survival mode of sorts. Fear of losing my job added to the things that eventually over-whelmed me and sent me to get my diagnosis. I'll be thinking of you guys...

YYZ

He finally, after weeks and

He finally, after weeks and countless exhaustive hours, called in help...but is still spending an enormous amount of time and energy into figuring it out. He truly feels that by the time it is over, a huge percent of the population will have this and never even know it. If he hadn't been hacked (separate issue) he would have never started digging and discovered it. It is apparently really bad. I get that. I'm trying very, very hard to be patient. God knows I am praying and keeping my disappointments to myself as best I can. God as my witness, I do not want to add to his stress and make things worse for him. He thanks me for being patient and supportive. He tells me that all he needs is my support. That would probably suffice if it weren't for the daily meltdowns, the threats to quit, the threats that he'll get fired (had a beer with his boss the other afternoon...I think that reality is FAR exaggerated by him). I understand he's on a mission to prove himself. He's terrified of failing. I wish he'd go about this in a different way. It took me weeks to convince him to ask for help..to reach out...to call Sophos....to call in extra help. He called in a local company and they are apparently dumber than rocks...and not only no help, but just added frustration. He called in a 'white hacker' (as he called him) and he was feeling much better after finally seeing a 'pro' come in and see what he's seeing and validate that he has, indeed, found something very ugly and very big...but that was yesterday. He stayed up all night, hasn't been to bed, and is at his wits end again. Up and down, round and round.

 

What a nightmare...

I'm glad he got some competent help to give him some validation. The lack of sleep on top of the ADD and stress must really be taking a toll on him. I hope they get the issues stabilized so you guys can have a better chance at working through some things. We all could use some flat track for a while ;)

YYZ

Apathy is worse than anger in

Apathy is worse than anger in a relationship...from either side. At least thats what the "pop psychology" internet sites say... I understand, too, about the detachment from you/ hyperfocus on work that you are describing. Worse, when I try to reel his attention back towards home by initiating a conversation, his immediate reaction is one of disrespectful comments ("why are you in my face?", "stop hovering"). It is in the timing for sure as to when to approach someone with these symptoms raging (end of day is pretty useless, after meds worn off and person is exhausted). But I am also trying not to react to this- it is part of his symptoms. That being said, I still try to approach and "suggest" he make time for us. I state my need that he give five minutes to converse with me before disappearing for 12-18 hours. He has been trying, I see (he'll stop and sitdown albeit unwillingly). But it does not feel like enough- I am hoping for more relationship to be sure. And I am trying to keep it positive because I DO love him, even in the face of seemingly outrageous and unkind behavior. But as someone said, baby steps. I just can not accept however his constant thoughtless barrage of mean putdowns. And I say so- to which he will stop if he is not too far into it. I have to wonder- is this the best it gets? He is on meds that keep him awake and apparently focused at work.. But this has not changed his anger, hyperfocus on certain things (why is my nailpolish chipped? Why why why?!), or anxiety. Does this mean the meds are still not right or is this it? ** in any case, Sherri, I think you made the right decision for you at a time you need to feel secure and safe. If this feels wrong, then change it back to your original major. It is my opinion though that sometimes things happen for a reason, and in general, it is always best to trust your instincts. Stay safe. **PS HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! It IS a special thing (your bday!). Let yourself have this joy and dont let this be about the thoughtless action of someone you love. :)

Lulu, it sounds to me like

Lulu, it sounds to me like you are describing intimacy. Our culture defines intimacy as sex, but here are some more appropriate definitions: "a close personal relationship; a quiet, private atmosphere; (this one is my fav -->) a detailed knowledge resulting from a close or long association or study; a private or personal utterance or action; familiarity; closeness; understanding; confidence." If intimacy is any or all of these things, it is very hard to build in 5 minutes a day. You are right--5 minutes is NOT enough. I have not been successful in rebuilding intimacy in my own marriage, but once upon a time we did find intimacy and conversation over a long meal at home. Perhaps your 5 minute stipulation could be extended to a long dinner one night a week (to start). It may help to have several topics for conversation in mind ahead of time until it is comfortable to talk somewhat freely again. Something else that occurred to me is that I never really felt that I had properly communicated my needs to my husband, because I either couldn't get us past his initial poor reaction or I couldn't get through the ADHD to help him hear anything other than "you are failing me in these areas." I am confident that this inability to communicate, especially about the topic of needs, is the primary reason our marriage failed (is failing, I should say--not done yet). If you can find ways to break through your husbands snarky ADHD barrier, I believe you will likely regain some much needed intimacy.

That is the only thing

That is the only thing keeping me sane at this point...is that intimacy has been restored for the most part. He has made time for that and did not rush it or make me feel like he was doing it out of obligation. We aren't fighting, for the most part. He is being kind and seems very grateful...but I am still lonely and have been since he started unraveling in Feb. Baby steps, I guess....very true

 

You're right. Emotional

You're right. Emotional intimacy, connection, trust...those are very distinct things aside from sex- though physical intimacy is important too. I struggle to get my DH to give that aspect of our relationship real priority, and his overt refusal to see how his actions hurt makes it really hard. But Im trying. I dont know what the answer is, but I do know I am not on the rollercoaster like I used to be. Do I feel respected? That my loved one is watching my back? No. Do I think he enjoys somewhat my pain because he truly believes that the source of our past years of room mate marriage was totally my fault? Yes. It stinks and I am refusing- REFUSING to let him bring me there, though it hurts in ways I can't describe. Here is the thing- our many many years together was not always like this, and we do know each other so well. Its just this new "explanation" of what our troubles have been rooted in has made the dynamic so crazy. I am hoping that we will find a new baseline to work on- one where we can both be happy. Truly happy. It takes two and while he is making attempts (ones I see), then maybe there is a hope in Hell. Fingers crossed.

New issues my tie to another feeling of failure

Have you considered the fact that maybe this new Diagnosis has re-inforce his feelings of failure?  ADHD brings with it so much failure in so many ways that the diagnosis doesn't excuse as much as legitamately MAKE us the failures everyone says we are... Now you have a "label" to put on it and him.. he might be rebelling to that within himself as well.. He is to be the "rock" for both of you and yet he has now obviously failed and is to blame??!! Think about it from his perspective.. show him the love that you would want him to show you.. Think about your tone in interaction or physical responses.. He reads them a lot better than you think he does and he may not feel like you love him in spite of his difference.

In my humble opinion and experience..

 

How do you explain the

How do you explain the deflection of blame? How do you explain the refusal to even admit ADHD has anything to do with anything? In your honest opinion how do you break through the walls of denial (that ADHD does cause issues)? The anger and non-ADHD spouse responses and reactions are devastating to the ADHDer, I get that...but when you're trying, you're killing yourself, you're spending the majority of your time praying and crying privately wanting so desperately for things to change..and they just don't, then 'showing them love' gets extremely tough. I did it, now I'm either angry as f*** at him or I am just completely shut down and want to walk away and be done with it. He wants acceptance and love...don't we all? But when he is demanding all of this, yet looking me in the eyes and lying to me..and breaking promises..and bankrupting us...and denying ADHD is any part of the problem...then WTF do we do? I TRULY want your honesty about this...because being able to get inside the mind of an ADHDer is invaluable to us. I know I sound bitter, but it isn't aimed at you..or my husband..just at the frustration of it all in general. It is sickening to feel like he's leaving me with NO OTHER OPTION but to divorce him...my best friend.

Yes absolutely! This adhd

Yes absolutely! This adhd label has made him very traumatized and he feels that I am just pointing blame at him. But how can we address the very real issues rooted in the add without talking about it? I love this man, I never wanted to hurt him. I have tried to be supportive to a fault, I think, as more than one person (okay everyone- friends, family, counselors) say that I am placing his needs above my own. I did not think so but... In the past year, he has been continually filled with putdowns, been physically aggressive (or intimidating) several times, disappears constantly- coming home drunk, has acted totally suspiciously in ways I wont go into... Yes, total lines crossed. On the plus side, we talk more about the issues directly (now that we know what they are), he has been helping more around the house... At least on the weekends, and he tries to be there for kids. That is the toughest, and no one here really talks about that. How are the kids taking all this? My youngest loves daddy and I just dont have the heart to break this family upjust now. The financial aspect is tough too though he is a good provider, just a secretive one. Yet even now, despite his promise to be home- he is not. No call, does not answer my calls (caled only a coupme times over last few hours). His self destructive behavior is out of control and though he has total intentions of being here, with his family- this actions say differently. I am at my wits end. Sadly my friends are no longer there for me- they all pretty much feel I should dump him.So recap: pros/ good kind man when things good, great provider, good father (used go be great). Kids love daddy home. Cons: alcoholism, verbal abuse, physical abuse, adhd - with lots of anger. I miss my mate and yet have no idea of what to do to turn around the situation.

He is completely unmedicated

He is completely unmedicated and untreated at this point. THERE IS NO GOOD TIME TO TALK TO HIM. I do need more, a whole lot more. I have vowed, and pray about it constantly, that I will wait patiently while he works through this problem at work, but so help me God things better change after that or I can't do this anymore. I love him, I pray for him, I cry and mourn the friendship we used to have...but I'm breaking. If things don't change by the time I graduate then I have some very tough choices to make.

I understand. And the huge

I understand. And the huge amount of work stress is making things even harder, with lots of the overspill anxiety landing squarely, I'm sure, at your feet in the form of blame/accusations/negative hyperfocus? Ugh. There is no easy way, because his "meds" are probably the adrenalne rush he can muster up through any trauma drama that he can muster up in and out of the house. I think you are right to just step back for now and let hs rages go with as little interaction when he is at his worst. I would try to see he gets lots of protein/omega 3 fatty acids in the am to help him focus, encourage sleep if at all possible. And the same for you! No one else will do it, I realized, and we, in turn, need to be on our game for ourselves and the kids. Stay well, centered, and positive FOR YOU.

So, after the 40+ hours

So, after the 40+ hours straight stretch, he crashed. Slept pretty much all night Wednesday night, all day yesterday, all night last night. Woke up today and lied to his boss that he was sick and not coming into to work. He's got a horrible cough, but it is from (I guess) smoking too many damned cigarettes.

He then proceeds to tell me he has to go into the office for a few minutes. Great..just talked to my SD and she needs him to help her fax something so I suggest he take it and meet her. No. Says he doesn't want to deal with her today. HUGE RED FLAG. He never misses a chance to help her/see her.  Long story short, I am 99% convinced he was completely lying. When I pushed him and asked if he really went to the office he said he didn't..that one of his employees met him and gave him a laptop. So, right there proves he lied. He didn't say "I'm not going into the office, so I can't meet SD" he said "I don't want to deal with her today". I've been married to him for almost 14 years. He was lying. When he asked why I was starting 'this shit' again (not trusting him) I told him that I have never made it a secret that I don't trust him...and he's done very little lately to help rebuild that trust..that he completely destroyed yet AGAIN by confessing something a couple of months ago. (not another affair). He says he doesn't blame me in one breath, and then turns right around and gets mad, calls me a bitch and says "guess why I'm leaving this time!" and leaves.

I cry everyday guys...because I am emotionally preparing myself for the reality that this person I am now married to is not someone I even know and that eventually our marriage will come to an end. I know it in my head...and my heart is just trying to catch up. The ugly name calling, the getting angry when I 'catch him' doing something wrong (instead of owning up to it and just being honest), it's all destroying us. I'm not angry...just completely broken and worn down. It is the worst feeling in the entire world to know that he's lying about where he's going...and then sit as the minutes tick by and the fears and worries mount because I wonder what he's doing...and how it will all come out and knowing the devastation it will bring to our family. I told him "you blame me because you lie...but you don't have to lie..you choose to lie...because what you're doing is not something you can be honest about..but it is between you and God now. I'm done trying to save you from yourself" I'm done.

Yes, reaching that place has

Yes, reaching that place has been horrible for me too. I dont understand how it can go from acting semi-civil ("i am going there" or "i was there") to "i was out f*ing some girl what do you think? Stop being a controlling b". Later he'll state he was being funny. Yea... Boundaries smashed and intentional hurting abounds. Not nice. I will pray for you, if you will do the same for me. The weird and scary thing is, Im not crying like I used to. I just dont think he gets it, gets or cares how hurtful he is. And i am just workng to keep myself off the crazy train...Along with the kids.

He texted after he left

He texted after he left asking me what I needed him to do. I told him that I needed him to consistently recognize that my mistrust isn't through any fault of my own, that I don't trust him because of his own actions. I spent many years trusting him without fail...even though I knew he lied here and there...I still didn't give another thought to him doing anything that would completely destroy our family. I trusted him. Now I don't. I told him, before he left, that he didn't know what it was like to live everyday of your life not being able to trust the person you love the most..that he didn't have to deal with worrying about me everytime I walked out the door and it wasn't fair that I had to worry about him AND deal with him acting like it was somehow my fault.

Anyway, I told him that I needed him to get back into church with me too..that I needed to know that he was putting God first in his life again (something he hasn't done in months) and to know that when he walked out the door every thought, action, decision, and feeling he had was with God's will for our marriage in mind. I told him that I needed him to be honest with me..period. I told him that instead of calling me horrible names he needed to acknowledge his dishonesty and hold himself accountable. I told him that I live in fear that when he walks out the door, when he lies, when money disappears that we didn't discuss him spending...it all adds up to me having an overwhelming fear that the next 'big' crisis was being created by him and his actions and that I needed PEACE. I needed him to GET IT that his lies were going to destroy us...big or little. He said he could do all of that...and apologized for calling me a bitch. That is the most I've gotten from him in months.

That is a lot, and I am glad.

That is a lot, and I am glad. But.... Consistency is not our dhs strong suit - ateast not mine. He has so said those things, seeming to get it, really get it, only to get off the nice wagon w some horribly mean comment negating the nice ones he said. It is most certainly a defense thing on his part but it does not make it any easier. In our case the fact that he makes decent money (though I still have problems paying all the bills-he now takes a big cut for his "personal use", though I dont from my paycheck)..seems to dignify in his mind keeping secrets, at least about where money goes... Just like where he goes sometimes. Things are very tough these days at home. I am trying also to prepare for the exit, though that is not what I want...I just can't fathom years of rude apathy, selfishness, and cruelty without respite. Things are going to break.

Trust...

Trust is the Big One, isn't it Sherry... After our one family therapy session I learned about the "Trust Bucket" like a bank account. When you have "0" in it there are big problems, so I had to start making little deposits until it was refilled. Two years later, I think it is well above zero, but far from full. I did not ever cheat, but definitely smashed the old bucket by other actions. I had a new job and was so stressed with a fear of failing at it because I thought that they would figure out I was not as smart as I appeared interviewing for the job. Our marriage had flat-lined for some time, busy, kids, work and no time for ourselves, no apparent spark, so depressing, had I over-sold myself to my wife too? I had new friends at work and confided in a female co-worker (Absolutely nothing going on), but still Way wrong, as I know full well now. I needed non-biased female input, my guy friends are useless in anything other than support, family members would become judgmental and I could not deal with that stress. I "thought" the friend at work could help. She was similar in age, married with children and so on. Biggest mistake of my life... My anxieties finally led to my diagnosis and an empty bucket. I trust my wife and know that she will not lie or hide anything of significance, this is my goal as well. I have had my stumbles with some purchases of things I did not really "Need", but in Major blunders I have done well. I will keep working on the bucket.

Without trust there is no marriage and it is on me to continue to fix this. If I had cheated on my DW, that boundary was defined a long time ago and it is a 1/0, Black/White, Yes/No that would be the end for me, so I applaud your determination.

YYZ
 

Well, just for the record..we

Well, just for the record..we all say "I would never forgive" or "it would be over" if we were cheated on..but you if I have learned one thing, affairs don't come in a one-size fits all. I can say, however, without any doubt in my mind what so ever, if he ever cheats again...God help him because he is the only one who can. He's gone. Period.

And yes, when you don't trust the person you NEED to trust most in this world, it is the worst feeling ever. The person you marry is supposed to be your soft place to fall, a set of safe arms to wrap around you and make the whole world disappear. You are supposed to be able to know that with just one word, one look that this person knows what you need and gives it. (hugs, support, love, etc) He turned our lives completely upside down and yanked away everything he'd 'given' me when I agreed to let him come back home after his affair. He stopped going to church, he started blaming me for everything again, he withdrew from the marriage, he hasn't worked a full 9-5 work week in months (stability), he's not taking care of himself (showering, eating, sleeping..and is smoking far too much!)....he just switched everything on me and revealed something that he'd been lying about for over a year on top of it all. Yeah, my trust is decimated and I refuse to take the blame.

When that is gone, the fairy tale blows up like an atom bomb, and you're left with the reality that this person isn't who they have presented themselves to be for a very long time...and their poor decisions could cost you and your family to lose everything. Feeling that kind of powerlessness is sickening to me. That's why I cut my Med Lab major loose and will do my best to graduate in the Spring. My family/kids need me to get my head out of my ass and start working on plan B. The 'other shoe' has dropped so many times in the past 18 months that I think God is up there saying 'FINALLY, she heard me!'.

I want desperately to trust him...and I want desperately for him to understand why I don't and not blame me...it makes things 1000 times worse. It truly does. Kudos to you for recognizing that you dumped the bucket over and it is up to you to pick up the shit and put it back in the bucket. Just be very sure that you're doing the right things according to HER NEEDS and not just what you think will fill it. It is a waste of time otherwise.

Post A-Bomb

So... Sherri... Do you think the trust Can come back? If I stay on course with my development, repair the leaks and keep filling the bucket we can get back the old trust? Things are improving this week. We are vacationing and having a wonderful time together with the kids. Getting away from the every day stuff may be a big help, although the No-Routine of vacation can be a little chaotic at times.

After discovering the ADD, I don't blame my wife for the condition of our lives. Both of us contributed to the condition before I knew about ADD and afterwards. Anger and mean words are so disheartening and I hope the anger let's up soon. I have always absorbed the anger and I'm sure some was warranted, but how anger is presented is also a key to making it a productive situation. I notice the dynamics are different during heated discussions nowadays. I stay for focused on the issue and try to address it, not using profanity and pointing out if the reactions are drawn by history based actions on my part. If I get angry at a driver who almost plowed his 3/4 Ton Duelly into the back of our car while wailing on his horn, my anger is Not Road-Rage, but legitimate Anger. If my actions after the event follow the road-rage pattern, then okay, but if I just get Really mad and glare at the driver as he blows past us I think that is understandable. It complicates things when I get attacked as this event is occurring by my wife, when my anger is because of protect my family mode after a 5 hour drive and now I'm also defending these actions... Over-load... I know all too well that before kids I had a problem with road-rage and feel very guilty about those days, but I am Much better about it with my family in the car. Do I get mad about all the rude behaviors on the road, Yes, but I keep in to myself or a comment regarding the rude behavior. Sorry for the long winded example, but it was a fresh one so my recall was pretty good.

Thanks for your insight, as usual :)

I'm sorry you had to change majors, but finishing college is HUGE! Great Work!!!! You have gone through ALL of this Stuff (Other words come to mind) and you are still going to graduate!!! 

YYZ

Absolutely, the trust can

Absolutely, the trust can come back. What will guarantee this is you knowing what she needs and giving it to her. Ask if you have to. I'm not sure if the trust you're talking about is with the female co-worker, but honestly you can fix it. My husband had almost completely earned my trust back before he started ADHD meds. Granted, it took 10 months, and a LOT of him rebelling against what I needed from him, but I finally had a modicum of peace about the affair...until he started meds and started being hostile. (I equate his being mean to me to him being unhappy..and in my mind, when he's unhappy he looks for ways to 'escape').

As for the road rage thing...you're right, you do have a right to be upset at someone who puts your family in danger. I'm assuming she reacted by being upset with you? My advice on this would to be stop reacting. Instead of being angry, but thankful that no one was hurt and let the maniac get on past you to avoid putting you in danger again. I hate aggressive drives, and find myself wanting to flip them off, blow my horn, etc...but I have stopped doing all of that because I am truly afraid that as crazy as people are these days, they'll shoot me. If someone cuts me off or pulls out in front of me, I really just try and stop and consider that maybe they're having a horrible day, maybe they were just diagnosed with cancer, maybe they just lost someone they love...and I wouldn't want to add to that by being ugly to them because they made a mistake. Road rage really is about not being able to just relax and realize that we all make stupid mistakes. If it bothers your wife then try reacting with "wow, he almost ran over us!" instead of "you stupid $^&*((&^%#%*&!!" and glares as they go by. I would say it gives her a sense of anxiety about what could possibly escalate from it...and it makes her feel like you are not in control of your emotions. Both are very scary for us.

The pay I can expect with the major I had to choose is probably about half of what I would make with my other major, and NOT what I want to do...I am not obsessing over it, just accepting that it is part of God's plan and that in the end I will get to work in a medical lab someday. I LOVED my medical classes...made an A in Microbiology when kids fresh out of high school, with 4.0 GPAs were getting Bs and Cs...it is MY thing... and I know I would be awesome at it. Realistically, I would have no support from my husband...I cannot depend on him for anything right now...and I just cannot risk getting into the program and then falling on my face because he won't help with the kids.

GLAD you're having a nice vacation!!!

 

Pre-programmed reactions...

Thanks Sherri... You are right about the driving mindset. I usually think the same way as you described and I'm just driving to work and I'm not worried about these A-Holes :) My DW's reaction is one of a pre-programmed type that I would like to see die-off as I don't react that way very often. Back to the bucket, I know, but it sometimes feels like one reaction like the old days wipes out 100 of the new. I never brought it up again. I think in our case the stresses of two jobs, tight money, two kids and all the business of life slow the work on ourselves. I was hoping the vacation would prove out this theory and it has so far. Take away a lot of the stupid daily stresses and all of a sudden things ease up. Yay... "I need a vacation" is more than an over-used saying :)

Are there many more hours needed in the medical degree or just a more difficult curriculum? What if you took fewer hours per semester, but stayed in your desired field? You could talk to someone in the medical degree's department and ask their opinion of how to proceed with their program, based on a "Busy" home life. Just my opinion :) I know there are times we need to settle, but I believe you need to make sure your dream degree is impossible before doing so. I wish I had known about my ADD back in my college days as it explains a lot. When I went back to college for my electrical engineering technologies degree, I remember what you were just saying about making all A's while "The Kids" made other grades. It was Real Weird having kids coming to me in physics lab wanting to confirm results and many times just ask how to do the lab. I was 27 and knew if I failed it was likely my last run at college, and my only chance to get a good job. It took me 4 years, 2 classes per semester at night, after the 40 hour day job, but I finally got the associates degree. All A's and two B's (One was physics) Loving a degree made it possible for me to complete one, maybe you can figure a way too! Either way your education will propel you forward. Good Luck!!!!

YYZ

It involves applying for the

It involves applying for the program itself...then if I get in my course work is set for me for 3 semesters (fall, spring, and summer). I don't get to choose when or what I take. She lectures (fall and spring semester) from 9-5 Mon-Fri. Summer semester would be clinicals (7-3). With my son who has special needs (19, autistic, daily seizures, very strict diet) it would be almost impossible for me to manage without help from someone. My sister offered to help at one point...but then almost immediately acted like she wished she hadn't (she plans on quitting work next May..my classes would start in Aug...and my son is in school until 2 p.m. each day. It would only be for a few hours in the afternoon. I thought about checking into adult daycares...

Oh..and I was given the shock of my life in late May when I was told I could no longer apply for financial aide...grants NOR loans. From where I had gone to college 25 years ago, I accumulated too many credits. 150% of credit hours necessary to get an associates degree...so I was cut off. I appealed, but was told they would only pay for one major. The agreed to pay for Med Lab..BUT..I had just finished up an intercession class (towards my Bus Mgmt degree) and although I kept asking "do I need to drop that class?" and was told no, that I would be Ok for Summer, the 'conditional approval' wouldn't take effect until Fall of 2011 (even have a letter from then stating so), they ripped my grants and loans from my account and left me owing $800 for my summer classes...that I would have had to pay out of pocket or I could NOT RETURN TO SCHOOL IN THE FALL!!!! They really did a number on me and no matter how unfair I felt it was and how many times I told them "YOUR financial aid reps kept telling me it would be covered...wouldn't go into effect until Fall semster" they didn't care. Pay or don't come back. I cried for 3 days....then my husband had his meltdown, told me he quit his job, and so I felt it was the only way. I called and asked them to pay for the Bus Mgmt major instead and the rest is history. I have considered calling the lady over the Med Lab program and asking what can be done, but with the competition so stiff, I am just not thinking they make any kinds of concessions to anyone.

 

The thing about business

The thing about business mngmt is that it is applicable in almost every field. Is it poss to get this degree and shoot for a job in a biotechnology firm- or pharmaceutical company (dont know where you are)? Many big corps have educational career development programs. All I can say Sherri, and given your strong faith you know its true- this may be happening for a (good) reason. We just dont know why yet.... <3

Im pretty much in the same,

Im pretty much in the same, ladies. My DH has been in contact with an ex-girlfriend, long distance for the moment, but soon to be in close enough proximity for more. I had to leave him a note calling him on it, because I was afraid I would absolutely loose it on him depending on his explanation. He's currently getting ready to leave, but wont commit to whether he considers it temporary or what. All the while he's telling his friends that it's just for a couple of months. Neither will he talk to me about his re-established relationship with that woman. I'm not wanting to make exit plans exactly or future plans without considering him, but a healed happy marriage seems so far away. He's beginning to talk about our marriage like the whole time it's been awful. I don't know whether that's the "now/not now" effect or if he is re-remembering it so he can feel less bad about walking away. Unless something dramatic changes, I will always have to be the one to take initiative to keep us healthy and happy, as it were. I'm hurt and exhausted. Even if by some chance he decides to face his ADHD I have the hardest time even picturing myself taking up the good fight again. I've read too many of your storeis and others here to have a lot of hope that my own relationship will change for the better. For me grief comes and goes in waves, but in general I feel better in a lot of ways since he has told his plans to leave. I feel bad for feeling relatively good and I hate that we have come to this place. You are both (Sherri & Lulu) so strong; to hear the desolation in your recent posts is ... indescribable. ((((Group hug)))))

I was right about him lying

I was right about him lying that day...and right on the money with my suspicions that he was doing something he shouldn't. It is nice to come back and read this and know that I am not crazy or paranoid or that my distrust in him isn't because of something inherently wrong with me like he would like for me to believe.

Not only did he not go to

Not only did he not go to church with me Sunday, I found a beer bottle IN THE KITCHEN GARBAGE CAN that I suspect was left for ME to see...but what the f**king jerk didn't even consider is that our daughter would be devastated to see it. She is TERRIFIED he will start drinking again and he KNOWS this. She has suffered from bad stomach issues (STRESS) and has put on a lot of weight in the past year..and I think it is 90% because of things she witnessed in our marriage. I am just beyond shocked that he would be so careless to leave it in the kitchen garbage. He's typically very sneaky about it, this is why I suspect it was intentional..to piss me off...an "in your face" kind of thing..."look at me, I'm drinking and you cannot stop me!"...and he would risk HURTING HER to make his point. NOTHING makes me want to leave him more than for him to cause our daughter undue stress. :-(

So, he asked what I needed, said he would do it...and that didn't even last 3 days. End of the world? No. I could give him more time to get back in church...but the alcohol thing..UNACCEPTABLE!!

Unacceptable for sure...

I'm really sorry to read your last few posts. I cannot imagine after having a near disastrous event ,like you described, to drink at all. My daughters have been to one constant that have really kept my eye on the ball for the last two years. The way I feel now with the Adderall I really don't like to drink much, because it quickly takes me down mentally and I don't like losing my mental sharpness. Does he not grasp what this is doing to your/his daughter??? I could certainly be oblivious in the past, but if he does not see this he should... I am so sorry for what you are going through and I know it is 10x worse because your daughter is affected by this too. The beer in the garbage "Could" have been a slip, I hope it was because if it was intentional that would be extraordinarily mean spirited. I'm actually on vacation, which is why I disappeared for a few days, so keep you chin up and try to focus on what Is under your control, you and your daughter. Your husband has to strap on his boots and get out of his own crap, take it from one who's been there himself. I'll be thinking of you and you family and hope thinks improve.

YYZ

I'm sorry to hear all of it. 

I'm sorry to hear all of it.  yyz I 'm very proud of you for the fact that you are trying hard to be a better person.  I hope your wife will see that and give you the credit you deserve. Alot of hugs goes to you sherry and hang in there to see what if.... My husband left me and my kids many times.  I don't think I can let him come back anymore if does it again, because it affects my children alot.  It is awful.  Tell him if he decided to leave you for HER, tell him that is it for your kids sake.  Maybe he will think twice and work on your marriage.  My husband is trying.  I can tell, but I can't trust him to stick it and work on it for long time.  When the newness of trying wears off, he will quit like rest of the project he started.... I gave up on just about everything about him and trying to work on myself and my kids.  I will try very hard to make myself happy and my kids with or w/o him.  Life goes on.

Many hugs for you.  Keep on writing and post.  We are here for each other to listen and support you.  When you feel lonely and frustrated, know that we are here for you.

jcz

Quick update to my update

I finally just sat down and laid things out to him. I asked him "do you realize that it has been 4 months since you've worked a 40 hour week at the office?" I mean I literally started wondering 'does he GET that is has been that long??' I got several defensive "I don't care" comments when I tried to get an feel for what was really going on with his job...how was he maintaining employment when he is NEVER going into the office? I honestly started thinking that maybe because his ADHD is so out of sorts that maybe he truly was missing something and feared he would just up and lose his job and not see it coming. A LOT was going on in his department and even though he claimed to be handling it all, how effectively can one handle things when they are never in the office? I told him I needed to be proactive...and not wait around until it was too late and he got fired. He got mad and defensive, but got up and went to work (it was well after noon by then). He claimed he was going back to the office Mon-Fri the next week anyway, but we'll never know.

Things started to feel much more normal...him at work, off at 5, not hiding out in the den 24/7, the network issues getting resolved, etc. He ever spent part of the 4th with me and my family...so that was a good sign.

As many might relate to, there was always something in the back of my mind (for at least 3 months now) that something wasn't right. I knew he was being dishonest (see 'trip to town' story above) and smallish sums of money were being taken out of the bank on a regular basis. It all added up to trouble for me...and God works in mysterious ways, but the truth finally did come out. Without going into details, he is struggling with an on going addiction problem (started out with alcohol 6 years ago, and has gone back and forth between alcohol, energy drinks - a LOT of them, pain pills, etc) and has pretty much reached a point where he's just grasping at straws for ways to calm the chaos in his head. It all exploded in his face last Friday and the Lord saw to it that I finally got the truth.

Long story short, he claims to be done looking for answers in all of the wrong places and has an appt in the a.m. with his doctor. He wants to try meds again. He was taking things (the doctor didn't know...neither did I) while on the ADHD meds the last time that may have contributed to the hostility and ineffectiveness of them. I also feel he was on too high of a dosage. (could explain the hostility too). He wants me to go with him.

Please pray for us that he finds a medication that helps him be happier and more at peace with himself. I know he does not see it, but he is being very passively-aggressive towards me and he is EXTREMELY sensitive to things and people right now. He's mad at my sister because my mower was messed up...and my yard hadn't been mowed in a month...and for the first week it was messed up my husband didn't show an ounce of interest in even taking a look at it...so my sister tried to get ahold of her son (my nephew) to come mow it for me. He took it as a personal insult. ????? He is "jokingly" very critical of me any chance he gets, hiding behind a 'laugh' and sarcastic attitude. I am not sure if he's angry with me (bitter? resentful?) or what...luckily there is a huge part of me that just doesn't give a shit anymore...and can ignore him. But, I do hope the meds help...I ignore it because I know it is ADHD..but I don't want to have to ignore it the rest of my life. I want him to stop being a jerk.

 

Promising update...

ADD certainly addictive behaviors. I'm lucky that I was only addicted to food, electronics and cars :) The food is beaten, and the other two are in better control. I still love those things, but I am not so impulsive and needing New Toys all the time. Work in Progress, again...

I'm lucky that I always feared addiction and was never addicted to alcohol or drugs. I'm hyper aware of how the downers screw with my ADD meds, so I don't drink hardly at all. Unless there is a party or special occasion, alcohol hardly sounds good to me. The ADD meds are hard to get set, so the less additives in the body, the better. After, you get the meds balanced, then you can see if mixing in a little beer or energy drink works. I still love my coffee, but I drink about half of what I used to drink.

The sneaking around MUST have added SO much anxiety to your husbands plate and a guilty mind makes things worse, take it from me...

I am sure hoping things begin to improve...

 

YYZ

As hard as it is for me to

As hard as it is for me to understand how someone does something hurtful, which makes them feel guilty, which makes the behaviors even worse (versus learning from the 'bad behavior' and resulting guilt and not repeating the bad behavior) I AM trying to relate to this. Honestly, the thought crosses my mind at least 10 times a day.."I don't want to make him feel like a bad person for doing ??? because I know that just makes things worse." I think one reason he was so successful, when we reconciled after his affair, at acknowledging his fault in the marriage was that it was SO blatant what he had done AND because the guilt was FAR more than just your average, everyday 'oopsie, I spent too much money' or 'I lied about where I was going'. I feel that somehow getting the ADHD diagnosis made his willingness to hold himself accountable worse. I've tried to be patient and let him go through the process of grieving and acceptance or whatever else he might need go through...but at some point things need to start moving forward again. I think my husband's main 'fuel' in life, the reason behind many of his behaviors and decisions, is mainly guilt and shame. My strongest hearts desire is for him to learn that he is worthy of love and for him to love himself. My wish for him is to find some peace within himself so that he stops looking outward to fill huge voids left from past experiences...in ways that are typically self-destructive and harmful to anyone who loves him. He is SOOO unhappy...and at no point in his life has he ever seemed to be able to just realize that it isn't ME or WORK or LIFE in general..but that a lot of his unhappiness comes from his untreated disorders. He is completely convinced that his job is the root cause of the misery in his life right now. At many points in our marriage he has been convinced that it is ME that is the root cause of his misery. It is always something...something other than his untreated ADHD...in his mind.

We went to his doctor today. He is physician...not a counselor or a psychiatrist. He is the one who was prescribing his meds. All along I had ill feelings towards him because I didn't feel my husband was being monitored closely enough. After todays visit I feel about 80% of the issue was that DH wasn't being honest with his doctor. Just as I couldn't get a straight answer out of him as to if they were helping him focus more at work (but he told his doctor they definitely were helping), his doctor was not getting any info on how they were affecting his marriage and him personally. DH said that I came with him to give my perspective, but seemed stunned when I told the doctor "they made him hostile, aggressive, and paranoid" (i.e. "stop looking at me like you think I'm stupid!!") Anyway, given his past history with meds and how they've affected him in mostly negative ways and with his doctor getting a little more personal history from me, he feels that although he has ADHD, he probably is bipolar as well. He is calling for a referral to a psychiatrist because he isn't comfortable trying to continue to treat him due to the lack of success with ADHD meds. In the meantime, however, he does want him to try a medication that is a combination of a mood stabilizer and an anti-depressant. (Symbyax) He said that since it could take a month or more to get in to see the psychatrist, he wanted to essentially try and be proactive before things got worse. I didn't get specific with him, but told him that DH was doing things that were not healthy or safe to self-medicate (and if looks could kill, I would be dead..but I didn't go there to lie to his doctor), and he feels that he needs to do something ASAP. He said that untreated bipolar leads to substance abuse and suicide quite often.

I was extremely impressed with how compassionate and caring he was. I am not sure if DH will take the meds or not. He felt ganged up on, but I think his doctor made him realize that was not the case by pointing out the fact about the substance abuse and suicide and he said he didn't want to see him back in there in 3 months still untreated and jobless because he didn't try treatment. One of DHs biggest fears seems to be that the meds will take away his 'gift' ... his intelligence..and therefore he won't be as good at what he does as he is. What makes me so sad about that...and what I hope both his doctor and myself (who has taken anti-depressants) got through to him...is that in many ways he's not successful right now, in SPITE OF his being highly intelligent AND they do not take away your intelligence or change who you are so drastically. His doctor told him that, without being able to predict any one person's reaction individually, ideally they make you a much happier and stable person which has a positive effect on all aspects of your life...work included.

I am praying for God to guide his heart in the way that is best for him. If he decides to take the meds, I pray they work well and make him feel better. If he decides not to take them, I am hopeful that he'll get the referral to the psychiatrist and he'll be able to offer some other options.

 

I just wanted to add another

I just wanted to add another point...

When I was depressed, after having my daughter, I blamed him 100%. I felt if he would just pay more attention to me then everything would be fine. Right now, in our current situation, it would be easy for me to blame his untreated ADHD on my own unhappiness...but the truth of the matter is, it is something inherently wrong in me that causes my life to turn upside down just because his does. In a fairy tale world, we would never be hurt by our spouses, never be disappointed or let down...but the reality is that we make our own happiness..or misery...and just as much as he needs to work on realizing that his job (or me, or money, or life) is not the reason for his unhappiness (although any of these can cause issues..they shouldn't cause inherent, chronic misery) isn't the reason he's so miserable...I am working on realizing that my misesry is of my own making as well. Yes, he is my husband..my life partner...and because of that he SHOULD strive to never hurt me and to only protect, love, and cherish me each and everyday...but I have a responsibility to provide all of these for myself FIRST...and his should just come as an added bonus. I'm just trying to say that I'm not going to ask of him what I don't expect of myself.

Healthy attitude!

Sherri you really sound like you are on the right track here, especially what you said about yourself and making your own happiness. Our individual problems only challenge our ability to be happy. I don't believe any couples unhappiness is just caused by 1 condition and I don't think you do either.

It is great that you went to the doctor with your husband and great he was okay with the idea. My doctor told me the same basic thing, after scoring a Bi-Polar quiz. He told me this was out of his area of expertise and recommended the shrink. I wanted him to do this, too... The psychologist quickly ruled out Bi-Polar and went to ADD. Your husband worries about losing his edge, not at all... I have improved work skills and processing powers because, like communication, I can pluck out the right ideas from the thousands in my head. I felt better... More comfortable in my own skin. I hope he gets to the doctor quickly before losing patience in the process. I think I felt a bit like you in that I love my DW, but progress had to move forward. Otherwise I felt as if I could never make her happy and THAT was very defeating. We are moving in the right direction now and hopefully you will too.

YYZ

 

Meds make you smarter!

Sheri:  encouragement for your spouse.  My husband is also an IT professional and very intelligent.  After about a week on the meds, he  said to me, "Why didn't you make me take this 20 years ago?"  He said the medication helped him stay focused and he solved a problem that has plagued him for years!  He has been more productive at work than he has been in....forever?  The meds are definitely a benefit on the job. 

Thank you. He has tried

Thank you. He has tried stimulant meds 3 different times now and any improvements they made for him at work were highly overshadowed by the fact that they made him angry and hostile. Given his lack of success with them and anti-depressants, his doctor feels maybe there is a co-morbidity at play (bipolar) and wants to send him to a psychiatrist and in the meantime start him on an anti-depressant/mood stabilizer combo. It would all make a lot of sense considering the ADHD meds did make him able to focus better, controlled some of his impulsivity, and made him finally able to sleep at night after not being able to for years (they would make a non-ADHD person stay awake all night)...so we know he has ADHD, but the fact that the meds exacerbated his mood swings and sent him into a deep depression once he stopped them cold turkey, it also makes sense that something else is going on.

I do appreciate your encouragement and I'm glad your husband has responded so well. So many of the ADHDers here have the same positive response to the meds.

so many similarities

Wow, Sherri, I am so sorry for what you are carrying right now. I see so  many similarities between our husbands. My husband too, even though he's in a different job (field), he is non-stop on his computer. God forbid when he gets viruses or crashes. It's hyperfocus for days on end until it's "fixed".  Also, I too can't talk about myself or ever get asked "How was your day"? My husband only talks about himself and his job, computer, hobbies, etc. Oh, and the opposite thing really made me take notice. For YEARS, I couldn't understand why my husband had to be on the opposite side of WHATEVER we were discussing. If I had an opinion, he took the opposite side, and often with anger and disgust like I was a total dummy who had the IQ of a rock. He still does that, but not as much now.

    I like what you said about being everything you could for yourself FIRST, knowing you weren't going to get it from your husband. I'm working on that for myself right now and it's HARD. All the years of the undiagnosed adhd on top of his affair really broke me down. I'm REALLY struggling to get myself back up into a better place. Anyway, it's also disappointing to know that we are married, and most married couples get comfort and strength and caring from their partners, and we don't. We even have to stop expecting anything good because it only causes more disappointment. It's a crazy way to live, and exhausting. The days are getting better for me, but very slowly. My husband keeps saying, "The past is over  now, so come on and get over it", which also doesn't help in healing. Those types of phrases actually delay healing.

    I pray that you find strength for today and hope for tomorrow. (something I also need for myself)

I think the "opposite" thing,

I think the "opposite" thing, in my situation, is somehow related to my husband being paranoid that I always want him to adopt my way of thinking and have no opinion of his own...so he immediately adopts the opposite opinion of me in various conversations just so he can 'be in control' of himself. It is so sad to me that he feels that I don't want him to have his own mind/opinion but I am sure somewhere down the road I have contributed to that. It is something I am acutely aware of now, during conversations, and try to point out to him "I'm not asking you to agree with me, I'm just asking you not to be critical of my opinion..." I tell him "I respect your opinion...now please respect mine". We had a conversation recently about my nephew (who my husband has consistently been jealous of throughout our entire marriage). My nephew is like a son to me. He's 22. He's recently started dating a woman who is 37. (I am 43). I take issue with this because as a woman close to her age I cannot understand why she would be physically attracted to a kid. MY OPINION..MY FEELINGS...MY RIGHT to feel this way...and he acts like I have something wrong with ME because he doesn't see anything wrong with it. He's not as emotionally invested in my nephew as I am, I get that, but he was downright bulldozing me through the entire discussion and acting as if I were wrong to be worried/upset about the situation. A few days later the subject was brought up again (not by me or him) and he said "we've already had that discussion and I think I won that conversation" very arrogantly. HUH?? I said "it isn't about winning..it is about us just not agreeing..agreeing to disagree" WHO IS THAT JERK who says things like that to me??

Also, on the flip side...I know what it is like to know someone who you will always 'disagree' with, just for the sake of disagreeing. There has only been one person in my life that I can ever remember that I resented and disliked their behaviors so much that agreeing with them on anything was something I avoided at all costs. Our conversations would go like the ones above...where no matter what this person said, I was going to find someway in my mind to disagree. SOOOO, having said that, I think this kind of behavior comes from resentment of some sort. I am not sure why my husband resents me...but I am sure he does right now...because he misses no chance to poke fun of me, to point out my flaws, to act as if I am not as valuable as I think I am, or to just tear me down...mostly done passive aggressively so that if I mentioned it, he would just make me think I was over reacting or being too sensitive. I think maybe he is angry with me for finally stepping outside of HIS world and into my own. That's OK...he needs it as much as I do.

I am praying for strength and God's wisdom for you as well...I have found that the more I pray, and the more patient I am, the more answers I get from Him. It is what gets me through somedays.

It took an act of congress

It took an act of congress and me having to deal with a lot of rude people, but I finally found him a psychiatrist. The one his doctor wanted him to see isn't in our network. Shocker! Not.

Long story short, I was at the point of giving up and completely exasperated Friday afternoon when I finally found a place that sounded promising (private practice...and Christian based). No answer. They're out on Fridays. Anyway, called today..no rude receptionists, no red tape, he has an appt on Aug 9th. Yay!!

I am trying to stay positive and trying to just be patient and let things work themselves out. Trying to be patient and let God take care of it in His own way, in His own time. When he took the new medication the doctor prescribed him ONE day and then said he hated the way they made him feel and stopped taking them a little part of me died. I KNOW it isn't the end of the world..he isn't giving up..he IS going to see the shrink..so I am trying to let that be enough. His attempt at 'self-medication' a few weeks ago (when it really seemed he was pulling through and getting 'clean') really threw a wrench in my attitude.

He feels our counselor and his physician are both wrong about the bipolar thing...and will be "glad", in his words, when the shrink proves it. I tried explaining to him that he has the wrong definition of depression (his whole basis to denying the bipolar..because he ISN'T depressed...nor was he those four times he checked out on the marriage and left everyone else to suffer while he stayed in his own world for WEEKS). I hope he's doing some thinking on it. I just don't get it. I suppose it is part of the ADHD...but I would just want to be fu(king happy and at peace...and he cannot say he is or he wouldn't be seeking ways to self-medicate...so what difference does it make what he 'has'? When I was depressed I KNEW I was depressed and I was literally begging for someone to hear me. I LOVED anti-depressants...and how they made me feel...if they just didn't make me gain 30 pounds in a month!

I'll keep you guys posted.

This is Great news!

My PCP sent me to my Psychiatrist after scoring a little high on his bipolar screen. I knew I was not Bipolar, but wanted to find out what I was... Whatever you husband's motive is does not matter. He is willing to go and find out what is wrong and that is great news. I did not like admitting to any weakness, but I know what I've got and intend to keep improving. Your husband can too...

Let us know how the appointment goes!

YYZ

DF's picture

Hello Sherri... I have an Update of sorts too

     I will not say I'm back from vacation.  I will only say that I'm checking in after several weeks and most likely will check back out for a bit.  I've been thinking of several of you in the past several weeks and thought it appropriate to check in on some of you.  I read one of your recent comments to someone about the letting go and I have to admit it made me smile.  I do believe I finally found what you mean by that.  

     During these past several weeks of absence my work has improved and my grades in school shot back up.  I'm finding me again and I'm having fun.  My home life hadn't improved any, but I don't really care about that so long as my kids and I get to continue spending time with my kids.  I'm beginning to think my wife may be going through a MidLife Crisis seeing as how much of what I've been reading about that seems to "fit" rather well.  If there's anything I take from that it's that nothing I say or do will calm her anger towards me.  So I have found my peace and I'm just fine with it.  I give her as much space from me as I can offer her.  We've made a good team for years, but what she's dealing with now I just can't help her with.  She has to fight this fight on her own and I respect that.  I've not lost any sleep  in over a month and it feels great.  I don't feel sorry for myself and sadness isn't interfearing with with my daily life anymore.

     So my situation with my non-ADD(HD) spouse hasn't improved at all, but it has improved leaps and bounds with myself.  I have to try to remember to pray, but when I do I still shout out for you and Lulu.  I found that when we feel good about things it's harder to remember to pray because we tend to pray only when we're down and "need" something.  I'm working on getting back into the habit of praying.  Not to be overly religious, but to be thankful for life and what its' given me and for strength for my wife to win her own battle.  

     I do miss you guys at times and wonder if things are improving or getting worse.  I don't come to the forum because I just don't have much sadness in me to relate to the struggles of both non-ADD(HD) and ADD(HD) spouses.  I came here before looking for answers to questions I did not really know how to ask.  I attempted to offer people meager advice based on my own hurt, but I'm not there anymore.  I love the woman I married, but I've wrongly believed the person that sleeps in the living room is that woman.  Quite frankly I don't want that woman that sleeps in the living room.  I think that's what flipped my switch to where I am today.  [ Just my two cents here...] -> We can't fix or make our spouses be something they may not be right now.  Because I care so much for my wife I believed it was my obligation to her to "help" her see the results of her actions/words.  All I was really doing was pushing her farther away.  We're afraid that letting go would mean that we'd be miserable and our spouse would find happiness in greener pastures.  But in the greater picture it's our willingness, not weakness, to give love and support is what makes us great.  We won't always say or do the right thing and me having ADD makes that a fact, but I'm letting something else guide me.  I'm not very spiritual so I won't go too far, but I'm not following my heart or mind anymore.  I'm just going with what feels like the right thing to do at any given time. 

     Bottom line is I don't fear losing her or being alone anymore.  I feel like I'm me again.  I do hope things are better for you, Lu, ADDWife, and yyz.

**CHEERING** You just made my

**CHEERING**

You just made my night! I am SOOO glad to see you finding peace for yourself. Waiting on someone else to provide it never works very well. Not losing sleep...phenominal!! GREAT to 'see' you and thank you for the prayers. I am very spiritual and believe it or not, putting all of this in God's hands (as you are doing on some level) has brought me a certain amount of peace as well. I'm not doing as well as you, but I'm getting there! So much wisdom in your post, I don't know where to begin...just awesome hearing such good news.

Thanks for the update!!! Hang in there!

Sherri

Df, I am so proud of you and hear your strength

Life is a journey and you have travelled far in these past few weeks away! I am sorry that the marriage is still so difficult, but am so impressed with your realization that this may indeed be something your wife must figure out on her own, as you still stand by and offer stability in the home. I am gping to reread your post several times, there are some gems embedded in it that I want to remember. Thank u for your prayers, I have been sharing mine with you as well. <3

Awesome!!!!

I'm so glad you posted. I was really hoping to hear you begin to feel better about yourself! It's kind of weird that when you stop focusing on how to stop your spouses anger and keep working on building and repeating better coping skills, you begin to FEEL better and it just seems to ease the tension for everyone. It's really good to here you feeling better. If you take another break, come back soon and give us an update. We are like a fraternity of sorts and it would be cool to one day have some sort of reunion, accept non of us have actually met ;)

YYZ

Psychiatrist appt was

Psychiatrist appt was yesterday. He seems to be standing by the ADHD diagnosis and not thinking it is bipolar (my husband denies feeling 'depressed' during his episodes...although I think he isn't fully aware of what all depression can encompass..but whatever).

We're trying Vyvanse again. Starting him on 20mgs...he started on 30 the last time..and went to 40 within a couple of weeks. DH was abusing some things and trying to come off of them at the time he was on the stimulant meds (the entire time! Oct-Feb) and the psych feels that maybe that attributed to his hostility so we're trying again now that he swears he's clean. (he came clean to me about it after he stopped the ADHD meds...and was withdrawing from both at the same time)

He was extremely passive aggressive with me on the way to the appt, during the appt, and after the appt. I knew what he was trying to do. I knew that he was lashing out at me. I didn't fall for it, although many of his words were very hurtful. When I pointed out how hostile he was when on the Vyvanse previously, he said that I just wasn't patient enough for him to adjust to an entirely new way of experiencing the world and thinking. I asked why that would make him so angry at me and jump down my throat every time I even tried to talk to him. I cannot remember how he put it, but he basically said that it was because I annoyed him. Nice. He also said, on the way home, that he had always been more accepting of my faults than I was of his. Now, don't get me wrong, I don't want to sound like I keep score...but he has done some very, very hurtful things to me. Things I would NEVER do to him. I thought about it for a minute, after telling him that wasn't a very nice thing to say, and I said "that might be a true statement, but can you at least acknowledge that my faults don't include me cheating on you?" He acknowledged that and dropped the subject.

He took his meds this morning and then headed off to work...proclaiming he felt better than he had in a very long time. I am really not able to find any reason to hope that this time will be any different from the last...except maybe that the other things he was taking were making THAT much of a difference (he wasn't taking them several years ago when he tried Concerta..which made him mean too).

Keep us in your prayers and I will keep you posted.

Glad to hear he went and you

Glad to hear he went and you can move a little bit forward. I am crossing my fingers for you. He must feel like a child to be so passive agressive. I hope he wants to get better for himself and not have this as another excuse to be mean to you. I have heard, time and time again how he does everything i say and " its still not good enough." He uses this to fire back at me so he does not have to be held accountable for his actions. I think he is really trying now.... He is really thinking before he speaks. I am still mad but trying to find someway to try again. I keep hearing melissa's words over and over in my head from one of her "must read this about anger" where the guy was unable to accept that his wife, a nurse, wouldn't give him one more chance and melissa said: " she gave you 15 years"!!!! Fix yourself, focus on you and do the work! That is how i feel right at this very minute! I am glad you went with him and i hope things start to get better for you. : )

Hoping for good results...

I'm sure glad to hear the he went and is trying the meds the doc suggested. Hopefully he will stay away from other drugs that could sabotage his efforts, like alcohol undermines my condition. It makes me feel like full on ADD is setting in fast. I'll drink a little is a social setting, but not much at all. At least it's a move in some direction. I hope it is in the "Right" direction :)

YYZ

Today is our 14th

Today is our 14th anniversary. Well, let me back up...last night was my 25th class reunion. I hated high school, went to a very snotty high school and was made fun of on a regular basis and had a very hard time making friends. My main (pretty much ONLY) friend was always more interested in boys...and since she dated a guy all the way through high school...well, we rarely 'hung out'. It was a very hard time for me. Same friend has been in and out of my life since high school, only EVER calling me when she was between BFs/husbands. We see each other every 3-4 years, have a good time, and then nothing for years. I've told my husband many times about how one sided the friendship was for years and how she was never there for me during high school when I really needed a friend.

She was there and I was glad to see her...as she is a lot of fun.  Her husband was with her. They are newlywed and she is very, very happy. Almost immediately my husband starts buying her drinks. We had a questionaire thing on the table we had to fill out and as her 'occupation' she put prostitute. We all got a good laugh, but he made a HUGE deal of it. (i.e. "you rock!" "You're my new hero" "yes! that's awesome!") I literally had to run him down to buy me drinks (he had all of the cash) and on 3 separate occasions (within about 1 1/2 hours) he was handing her a beer he went to the bar solely to get just for her...only once asking me if I wanted anything. At another point in the evening he disappeared for a fairly good amount of time and I found him outside talking to another one of my classmates...smoking...alone. They announced they were going to play slow songs next...he gets up to go smoke and never comes back. I go out to find him (and to smoke myself - I only smoke when I drink..which is rarely) and he is headed back in. My friend tells him to come on out with us..her husband was with us...and he refused. He is at MY reunion..with ME...but was going to go in? Is he not there FOR ME to spend time WITH ME? We SOOO rarely get to go out together that it is just very, very disheartening how he made very little effort to make me feel like I mattered more than the plant on the table...but fawned all over and serviced my friend with beer all night...and to my knowledge, she never even ASKED him to get them for her or mentioned wanting one..he just watched as she drank and saw when she was getting low. A very low point in the night was when he disappeared to smoke, they started playing slow songs, and as everyone headed for the dance floor I sat at the table alone checking the door every few seconds hoping he'd come back in. He didn't. That is when I found him outside with the female classmate. It was like high school all over again...and I am even more devastated that he went out of his way just a mere 5 years ago to make sure I enjoyed my 20th reunion and felt special. Instead of being that person, he hyperfocused on my fu(*#ing friend all evening.

Today I decided to talk to him about it..he knew something was wrong from the time we left. I wanted to at least try and have a nice day with him...so I decided to just say what was on my mind and asked or 3 or 4 minutes of his time. I asked him to please not react with anger. To please let's not fight. I was taking a bath at the time and asked him to come sit in the bathroom...and I pulled the shower curtain to avoid any mis-communication in facial expression (mine or his). This has been an issue before...more than once. Probably at least 5 or 6 times...and of course, it is not secret that he's had a one night fling with his ex-wife and a 2 month affair with another woman during our 14 year marriage. I told him how sad it made me to feel so alone last night, to have his attention going to someone else, explaining that I need him to act like MY husband and not everyone else's. I asked why his attention wasn't on me and not everyone else. I asked why he can't/won't stop doing this in spite of my telling him many times how disrespectful to me it is and how hurtful it is. If the situation were reversed, let me just say, he would NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER tolerate it. OR if another guy was buying me drinks...OMG he would die! It is NOT his job to supply my friend with beverages all evening...and I do feel, on some level, it is insulting to her husband.

Why is he doing this? Was it to impress her husband? (they discovered they grew up in the same area...and my husband has always been on the 'even though I came from ____ I have made something of myself and am not the trash you surely think I am' kick) Is it stimulating to him? Does it feed his ego? I CANNOT live with it. I WILL not accept this as 'just who he is'. It, to me, is a deal breaker. It is the stepping stone to the HUGE issue in our marriage of him feeling the need to go outside of the marriage (whether full blown affair or just friendships) to feed his sense of worth and ego and if he cannot even control his fu***ing self when I am with him, then WTF is he doing when I'm not!???

I kept it short and to the point. I did get emotional...which I know was a mistake, but I couldn't help it. I told him I was done...and asked if he had anything to say. He stood up, said a very ugly, insincere "I'm sorry..that's all I have to say" and walked out and slammed the door. He's been in bed watching TV all day..and I've stayed in other parts of the house. Not at all the way I wanted to spend our anniversary. He didn't even get me a card. I got him one, but I haven't given it to him yet (it's 9 p.m.) and probably won't. I did try and put it behind me for the sake of our anniversary...even though I had horrible dreams about it last night...and tried to call him after church to ask if he wanted to do something. He said he didn't feel good and then said whatever I wanted to do..he didn't care. He wouldn't give me any input at all. I just stopped and got steaks to grill. When I got home, plastered all over my FB page were comments from the friend about how she had too much to drink and was blaming my husband...she posted on my wall about it. First post she has ever made on my wall in the 2 years we've been friends on FB. She mentioned it in her status update...and posted about it on the FB page created for our reunion. Salt in the wound...and I mentioned that to him too...why would he make over her when he knows how she has not been a very good friend to me at all?

I want to be someone's everything...not someone's object of affection and attention only when he wants sex. I honestly don't know how much more I can take.

(he started meds almost a week ago...and I have barely seen him. He is 'working' late all the time and is avoiding me completely...it feels).

 

DF's picture

I'm seeing a dent in your armor Sherri

Now for you and Lu I'd like to say I'm extremely pissed at both of you, but that would not be fair to any of us.  I'm in a happy place so let me bring you over with me......

Sherri - You should have gone to the class reunion by yourself.  I smile at how that would have made your husband feel - kind of like the second fiddle you feel like I bet.  It's not mean and it's not unfair because you are not the desperate woman he perceives you to be - yes he does, and you would have had a much better time there without him anyway.  Most of what I read above was your inability to really enjoy yourself because you couldn't take your focus off him and it ruined your evening. 

Lu - That's horse poop.  You should not have to accept that nonsense from him.  There is power in the old saying that if you love him, let him go.  I'm not condoning you leave him, but the person he is today doesn't sound much to me to be the person you want loving you.  You want the man you married and not the fool that curses at you.  I'm saying - let yourself go.  You have not detached and to do so doesn't mean to stop loving him, it means that you have found your peace and there is no more pain.  It's possible to do, I know because I'm living proof.  I have ADD, but I'm not the problem in my marriage and I want so bad to help my wife, but the battle that's going on inside her is a lonely one that I have no place in.  She has to come through on her own and that's hard for me because I do love her, but I'm not responsible for her actions and neither are you and Sherri responsible for your spouses actions.

Both of you -  2 months ago I said the same damn thing to someone - "I don't know how much more I can take."  When I said that I cried for my children.  5 days later my light switch got flipped and I saw everything so clearly.  I love my wife so damn much and to see her angry or upset with me hurt very badly ( you've read my history ).  My response to this was to try harder to "show" her I loved her and what she meant to me and all it has done was push her away and I asked myself - If I'm doing all these things for her, what has she done for me?  In the past she had done everything, but now it's nothing.  She has given me the gift of sight and I am using it to the fullest.  I am not dependent on her anymore and I am not responsible for her actions.  What say you about your ADD(HD) husbands?

I don't have specifics and everyones situation differs, but I've dropped off my wifes planet and I'm happy.  No more talks about anything, I'm done.  No therapy, no texting, no calling and not any damn time together.  She's in a fight between logic and emotions and I am the enemy.  My very presence is a hostile act and I support her and show her I love her by giving her time and patience.  I have backed off.  I do not expect her to move out of the living room and into the bedroom anytime soon, but I lose no sleep over it.

I find it interesting that I too just had an anniversary.  I gave her an awesome creative gift that she enjoyed and it cost me under $40 - I got nothing.  I do love being creative, I just forgot how for a few years.  Mine was last week.  The night before, my wife was stressed and I thought it nice to try and relax her.  She did relax and we talked for a few hours.  She resents me.  She repeated it a few times.  Honestly I had a hard time not smiling for long periods of time during our conversation.  She was not mean, but honest and I respect that. Heck, not one thing she said to me bothered me one bit.  5 months ago I'd be devestated, but today even a week later I'm on top of the world.  I don't love my wife less, I love her just the same.  I have not changed one bit since that night.  What's hard is knowing what I do about what she's going through and not being able to help her - she must do this on her own.  It all came to a head a pintch over a year ago and and it may take a few more years, but she must confront herself if she's ever going to be happy.

Now with that said ladies, that's the biggest difference between me and your husbands.  It's not how I treat my wife or how my "condition" has laid a goose egg on my marriage.  It's the fact that I've taken a hard look at myself.  I've faced my fear of failure and I fear no more.  I'm not afraid and therefore I can provide.  A boy is raised believing that he is a failure if he can't provide and it's not just me it's our society.  If you constantly tell/show your husband in various ways that it's all okay it doesn't work.  You are wanting something he can't "provide" you because he's constantly reminded how he's not providing when you tell him how dissapointed you are in him.  This is all in theory so take it as you will, but I understand more now what it means because I see what I'd been doing for years with my wife and it's not so far off.  We are boys, my dear Sherri and Lu, and we will remain boys until we can become men.  Ladies mature faster than us and some of us never really mature at all.  For me it took a trigger and I don't know how to explain exactly what it was for me other than to say I hit a low point I didn't think I could ever reach.  It didn't scare me, but it made me look at me and I don't really know what happened from there.

I was a "buddy" to my wife for years because of issues with trust that I have and I have unfairly and unknowingly kept her at arms length.  She resents me in part because today I am the man she always wanted me to be, but I didn't know how to be.  She has to relearn trust and so do you. 

Sherri / Lu - life has not handed you lemons Kids.  It has handed you something special in you so take stock in that.  Our situations differ in their own way so I hope I don't sound too all knowing here.  When you no longer hurt when you think of or speak to your spouse or hear about something they've done, that's when you'll find that even on rainy days, the grass and trees have a beautiful shade of green.  I doesn't mean you don't love your spouse, it means you love yourself and that $hit makes me smile.

DF -

When you're right, you're

When you're right, you're right. Hindsight being 20/20 I wouldn't have gone to the reunion at all. Also, hindsight being 20/20 I would have gone to the church picnic Sunday that I ditched because it was our anniversary too.

You are so right...I didn't see it at the time...but looking back, the entire evening was wasted with me wondering where he was, being jealous of his attention to my friend, and just feeling like shit about myself in general. A different group of people were at this reunion...and here we are, all adults, and you would pass by someone and they literally won't even look your way. High school all over again. Will never go to another.

DF, I very much get the whole "when you tell him he screws up all of the time, he's just not going to want to try" idea you're presenting...and it is EVER PRESENT in my mind that if I don't quit being so bothered by everything he does, then that is where we will end up. The reason this particular behavior is something I cannot seem to ignore is wrapped up in one small paragraph of my previous post...the one saying why this is deal breaker behavior for me. When I found out about his second infidelity in 2009 I ONLY took him back with the absolute condition that he get help and figure out why he cheats. What is missing in his life? We had no idea about the ADHD at the time. Now that we know, know that it probably contributes to all of this, it is like he wants to stick his head up his ass and pretend that he's got everything under control. "oh I will never cheat on you like that again" and how many fuc***g ways I can I explain to him "you say that now, but when you get to THAT point, my feelings don't matter AT ALL" and he WILL NOT TELL ME. I hate to assume I know him better than he knows himself, but sometimes I just wonder what the hell he 'sees' about himself when my experience and history has told me that NOTHING matters to him when he's 'there'. I am not willing to stick around and wait for him to cheat again. I am 100% convinced he will if he doesn't get help. I am convinced there are times he has crossed lines that I don't know about. We are 1 year post diagnosis. We are 19 months post reconciling. I cannot say with any level of confidence that he has made any progress in his awareness of his ADHD, how it drives him to destroy his marriage, and how completely out of control of it he is.

I will find a way to find peace with this situation. I will find a way to keep moving forward and putting myself first. I will continue to work on me. Please...keep the boots on and keep kicking my ass. Your post did more for me than I can ever explain. I SOOO want my switch to flip..and stay flipped! I'm good at switching it..for a day. Sigh.

Reunions...

Sorry to hear that your reunion and anniversary were disappointing (To say the least). I just attended my DW's 25th HS reunion. I'm still not real comfortable in social gatherings like these, although a lot better than I used to be. It was Her night and I was there for her. I was so much more aware of myself than the old days, as in my talking to much or too loud or talking to someone I Know would be inappropriate. It sounds like he is dishing a little punishment at two key days for you and I think it sucks. I cannot imagine "Trying" to Pi$$ my DW off on such days.

I swear that FB causes more trouble than good. The whole "Friending" thing is such a pain. If you know them you have to worry about how your spouse will react if they don't know them. Posts... Ugggg... I swear I'm thinking of killing my account. It sounds like he is mad about the whole ADD thing, new attention to it, new meds, or who knows... He should not be treating you like this regardless. It's one thing to not know your actions hurt someone you love, but to intentionally hurt them, unacceptable...

Sorry Sherri... You did not deserve the jabs on your anniversary or reunion back to back.

YYZ

I do feel it is on

I do feel it is on purpose...him still taking stabs at me...just like day of the appt with the psychiatrist and he took much liberty in trying to pick me apart. Maybe I see it when it's so much more blatant. Maybe that is what was happening. I sensed hesitation from him from the get go about going. Not like him to not want to go out...he likes going out. I had a gut feeling that going was a bad idea...that he didn't want to go...I will not ignore my gut anymore.

When my friend put the prostitute thing on her questionnaire, he was really loud and 'over the top' with his reactions. (see above) Normally, it wouldn't have bothered me, but it wasn't a huge room and I just couldn't figure out why he was making such a huge deal of it. LOUDLY. Repeatedly.

I never thought of it that way, YYZ, that it was his way of 'punishing' me. It would make sense, since this isn't a normal way of behaving for him. Yes, he always wants to be the center of attention and makes over girls so that they will think he is just the greatest person ever, but to ignore me the way he did was new and it really hurt. He asked if anything was wrong on the way home...and I told him no...but he sat in silence with the music turned up. This indicates to me that he KNEW something was wrong and was avoiding it, hoping I would get over it. I think he knew all along what he was doing...and did it on purpose. He is punishing me.

Lastly, at one point me, my friend, and DH were standing outside. I asked where her business had relocated to and she told me and said she was looking to hire someone part-time to help her. I told her I was desperately looking for something part-time and she said she would talk to her boss today. He gets stone cold quiet and sinks to the ground as if he is sick or something. I asked what was wrong, he said 'nothing' and so I just assumed he was tired...but looking back I feel it was him reacting to me getting a job. He is quick to want to spend money, quick to give me attitude when I tell him we don't have any extra, and even tried to make me feel bad for telling him that a huge cash withdraw he made (when he was mad at me) recently put me in a tight spot by saying "I'm always in a tight spot" (i.e. he never has enough money to buy everything he wants/needs) which is BS. BUT, let me mention going back to work and he flips out. The longer things go that he denies his ADHD's effect on our marriage, the more he insists he can control it himself, the more he continues to blame me for everything and act like I am the one who has the problem of just not accepting him for who he is...the more desperate I feel to gain some financial independence from him and start saving for Plan B. I cannot pretend that everything is fine when he's doing nothing to address the issues. I'm being as patient as possible, giving the shrink and the meds time to see how this is all going to pan out, but if this most recent set back has taught me anything it is just how unpredictable life with him is. I have to do something and be proactive. He is taking meds and I feel quite certain that will be the extent of his treatment. He is doing THAT for his own reasons...not to help the marriage, not to 'fix' anything, just simply so he can legally take medication (vs. self medicating) and fill that 'need'. I have every reason to believe that he will never own up to the 'bad' parts of his ADHD and do anything to change them. I can't just wait around and let it happen to me again and not be prepared to stand on my own.

Beware of "friends" who aren't "friends"

I think getting a job would be a great thing for you, but beware of friends who are not friends.  Someone who was your high school "friend" but never really paid any attention to you was, perhaps, not really a friend at all.  Then to hang out with your hubby for your reunion and then complain about it publicly...hmmm.  I'm thinking that this fish stinks.  You risk really complicating your life by working for someone who has impacted you in such an emotionally negative way over the years.  Resist the temptation unless you genuinely have NO other options.

Thanks for your input

Thanks for your input Melissa. I think I do need to go back to work.

She actually did not really respond to his attention the night of the reunion...she and I had a great time together in spite of him. Her comments on FB were along the lines of "I had too much to drink, I blame (my DH) for buying me all of those beers" (this was posted on the reunion website itself, for everyone to see). We have never had a meaningful, mutual relationship...ever. We have a good time together, but I washed my hands of her when she was going through her divorce about 2 years ago and called me wanting to hang out, but then as soon as I started to ask her to go out, which coincided with the time she started hooking up with people on Yahoo Personals, she flat out told me (on Tuesday) that she couldn't commit to going out with me on Thursday b/c she might have a date. I just dropped everything and never heard from her again...until before the reunion. My hours of availability do not match the hours she needs someone to work...so that situation didn't go any further than the conversation we had that night.

I have no misconceptions about her feelings towards me. There is nothing deep and meaningful there...not even for me anymore. I'm OK with that. I enjoyed her company Saturday night and probably won't enjoy it again for many years. :-)

 

Hi Sherri, Sorry to hear

Hi Sherri, Sorry to hear about the latest turn of events. I know how it was- as we just celebrated our anniversary as well. Things have been strange lately. He has been very distant and obtuse- not around a lot, still abusing substances etc. But on the flip side, came home and we went out to dinner to "celebrate". He is very apathetic it seems towards me, but is willing to do some of the things I request around the house. But then wants to be left alone - and will tell me that in not so many nice words (when he is outright ignoring my talking to him). We do deserve more, and I am ever aware of this in a way I was not before. It as though I am trying to be more giving to myself in a way I never have before (because I did not feel I deserved it +/or I focused on his and my kids needs over mine. Recently, there was a thread about the need for that "EXIT" plan...and I have to say that I agree there always needs to be one. NOT because it means that you are necessarily planning an exit but because in defining your (financial, social, personal safety, and all-) plans it makes all the more clear how you can survive as an individual (committed relationship or not). Maybe not all marriages require this (I like to think not)... But in cases like ours, when we love and feel persisting commitment yo our spouses despite the litany of abuses... It is imperative that we define what our backup is - thus defining what our needs are, what our personal capabilities are, and a way to further crystallize our own sense of self esteem. My dh told me today, amongst his civility, that he did not care what I needed, to shut the f*#ck up- ignored most of my comments that were all offered in a friendly conversational way.... yes its rough being around that. To maintaon my own sense of self esteem is the only way I can deal with this. I MUST survive for the sake of me and for the kids. So having that backup plan just gives me a sense of reassurance that I and the kids will be okay. No matter what. It is a continuation in the line of thought that acknowledges that we have no way to change anyone but ourselves. And to protect ourselves and the people we love by pulling together a financial back up plan is just another way to honour ourselves and them. And hopefully, in the meantime, things will get better for our DHs.

Sherri, Sorry to hear about

Sherri,

Sorry to hear about your continuing turmoil.  As you have said many times, this disorder, again and again brings unpredictibility to the surface.  Unfortunately, because of this, we, as strong individuals, have been given no other choice than to have some sort of "plan".  I know in my case it has given me some peace of mind.  I had too, "planning" is not in my husband's vocabulary.

Df, I guess I did not make

Df, I guess I did not make myself clear. Sometimes I purposefully do not put in specifics to maintain a privacy line I am comfortable with. In my mind, I AM maintaining, to the best of my ability, a level of loving detachment. I am taking care of myself, more the kids, but also not being afraid to firmly and calmly (as I can, sometimes easier than others) to state what is acceptable and not acceptable- or I leave the room. I know yesterday my Dh was running at half mast- did not take meds, was crashing all day, etc. But still got up to do chores I requested as we all did. He could not deal w talking. Period. So I let him be as much as possible, but did not cower in fear if something needed to be said. THAT is, IMHO, how the lines need to be defined. No it was not acceptable he speak to me that way- I KNOW that (and I think, so does he of course). I told him that. For now, this will suffice as I hope he works to get his sh#%t together (I say asovingly as I can). But these are his issues, and I can not help him get past it unless he can acknowledge it AND make stronger effort to connect with me (both separate issues). It his choice, as I work through mine. I dont take things for granted, or him for that matter. And no one should of their spouse regardless. My one concern, DH, is that your epiphany does not stray so far into the extreme that you do not take clear ownership of your past hurts to your wife as much as possible, til she is ABLE to get over the resentment she so clearly feels. It is unpleasant, I know. But for a person to be able to heal from this kind of dynamic (which you so importantly (!!) are able to acknowledge at least in these posts) then I think your wife also needs to hear that you are earnest in EARNING her trust back. I understand that you are acting differently now. But those actions must be supported by words (at least for many people a la "five languages of love"). Be well.

I agree...and disagree...

I agree that you are doing what is best for you at this time. When you're not ready to leave, you're just not ready to leave..so you find ways to cope and make peace for yourself. You CAN stop the fighting and the chaos by simply refusing to be a part of it. It takes two. If your DH is like mine, he will avoid conflict for dear life...so when things get really bad, it is usually ME starting it and ME refusing to let it go. I wanted desperately to discuss how his behaviors made me feel at the reunion. I decided to wait for the next shrink appt. Then I decided I couldn't wait. Then I decided I am done avoiding hard topics just because he 'can't handle it'. I did what I 'preach' about here all of the time..I told him quickly, got to the point, didn't repeat any of my points, told him how it made me feel, and then simply said "I am done". His reaction was the same old...mad, defensive, cold shoulder, etc. But, that's OK. I won't keep my feelings bottled up inside to fester into a rotting, angry soul anymore. I am not emotionally crippled....but I am spiritually crippled by keeping everything inside and feeling like I have no right to address anything with him for fear of 'making things worse'. It is not a life I want to lead and I won't. If he cannot man up and accept that his ADHD makes him a fu(king jackass sometimes, then that is on him...and he'll suffer the consequences of his denial...but it won't be for lack of me trying to say "hey, this hurts...please don't do that anymore". It isn't asking too much to ask the one you love to STOP HURTING YOU!?

However, I disagree that DF's epiphany could lead him into an area of seeming unconcerned or unloving. I think he is doing 100% the right thing and it is the absolute best chance his marriage has. The harder he tried, the further away she pulled. He's not being a jerk to her, he's just giving her the space her actions have been screaming at him that she needs. He's there, he's taking care of the family, he's engaging when she's willing, (as far as what I'm reading...it seems this way, anyway), but he isn't torturing himself by letting his each breath depend on whether or not she's willing to accept the new him. Honestly, I cannot fathom the whole "I resent you because you are who I always wanted you to be" thing. I think it's BS. I think she's TERRIFIED of believing that he's changed...truly changed...and the only way she'll ever believe it is by seeing it...day in, day out, and with consistency and time. His telling her that he is trying to earn her trust hasn't worked. I know, for me, a huge aspect of my marriage has always been that he says one thing, but does another. "I love you, I am sorry I hurt you. I won't do it again" and then two days later he does it again. His words are meaningless at this point. His actions will be the ONLY THING that would ever prove to me that he's changed. He told me just a week or so ago that he knew I was angry and that it was his fault. I took ownership of it, saying it was 100% my choice, but he took his responsibility too and said that he knew I was angry because of what he had done to me..that me made me that way..that I wasn't always this way, etc. FF to now...it meant nothing because his behaviors are still the exact same. If anything, worse...because now he's never home and seems to be avoiding me like the plague. That 'says' a lot more than his words, ya know? 

I totally get DF's wife... I

I totally get DF's wife... I am her and feel the same in my situation. I feel like sooo many years have been wasted. I feel like i am nothing like i was when we met. I dont like the angry bitter person i am now. I am mad that my life has been so hard. My fairytale has been a total nightmare, dragging and kicking pulling our family UPhill every minute of every day. I have faked all the "great times" spent with family. I am deeply alone because no one gets it. I cant confide in any one because no one gets it, i have been taking care of myself, by myself for over 10 years.(minus the counseling i have done for over ten years because i felt i was not good enough or not loving him enough!) I am mad at what a total waste i feel this life has been with him. He turned into his father who is bar far the meanest, rudest, chauvanistc(sp) ahole on the planet. His dad belittles people and talks down to them. My dh was fantastic at belittling and talking down to me... Now, that he is trying, i am so upset because he has been on meds for over 10 years! He COULD HAVE made things better, he could have tried THEN, our life could have been so much better starting 10 flipping years ago.... I felt i was lied to, i feel i was sold a sour bit of goods... I dont know how to get out of this angry feeling.... I think maybe i can try one more time.... But i cant seem to get the 'sick to my stomach' feeling in the pit of my stomach to go away... Everything he ever said to me resonates in my head, every "thoughtless" comment is haunting me every minute of the day.... Even yesterday, he finished melissa's book and asked me what i wanted to do now, what my thoughts were, and i said " i am just mad". "I feel like all this time has been wasted and i feel so angry that everything for ME has been so extremely hard" and "i am still so mad about it".... And he said "so, thats all you got out of the book?" and then shrugged off. I almost felt bad for him.... More of the same "your not good enough" talk for him to twirl around in his head. And... i get the impression he wants me onboard to fix it, or LET IT GO again!! I get it, i totally get dh's wife... She doesnt know how to get back... I bought the anger book, and it just made me more angry... I cant finish it.... I dumbed myself down for him, i tried to look up to him and i stuffed all my comments inside and the anger has just taken over... I dont like me anymore... I could careless what he does or says anymore. Sorry df. I am hoping my dh gets where you are, he is still wallowing in self "bad talk" which will amount to being my fault (because he has tried everything and gets nothing from me) in his next blow up. If we did not have children, i would have left long ago.
DF's picture

You guys are so much fun...

 I don't want to bring in another issue and rob the basis of this website, but if my wife is having a MidLife Crisis, and at least 1 shoe fits her perfectly - to the 'T' and with the 'i' dotted - none of us can understand what she's going through.  Her resentment of me comes from something within her that she is at war with.  She has a battle going on between logic and emotion and as we all know, emotion is day to day and logic is reality.  As her spouse I am the first to feel any and all heat and I will be the last to receive resolution.  Will this end soon, probably not.  Will we be happy together in the end - most definitly.  I gut has not led me astray since my switch went off and my gut is telling me that we're going to be just fine and just keep going.

I am not cold to her in any way, I'm just indifferent.  I'm happy and she's unhappy, but I can't make her happy if she is not in a place to let me.  She was seeing my distance as tension and when we talked I told her otherwise, but it's not my responsibility to "make" her believe me.  I do not force myself on her.  There have been times this summer when she has made plans with the kids and then some time later, as an after thought or obligation, an invitation would be extended to me.  I have declined them all and rightfully so.  She has told me that she resents me and my presence would not have made things better.  I make all my plans in advance if I can and all can be adjusted and changed on the fly.  I feel freedom within my own skin and that's something I haven't known since my wife and I met years back.

I went to the library once a bit ago and sat and read a book until they closed at 9PM several hours later.  I then went to a park with adequate lighting and continued to read for a few more hours.  There were no questions asked when I got home and no explanation offered for my time away.  I said goodnight to the person on the sofa and I went to bed relaxed and youthful.  I'm in a place where if I wanted to go to a movie by myself I could go see a couples movie alone and sit right in the middle of the theater.  Where I was once self conscious and self absorbed I am completely content.

PJ - you do have some understanding.  In my defense, I am a good person and i have never cursed at my wife or harmed her, but I have heard many of your words come from her mouth.  what I have noticed from talking with her and reading what Sherri and you are writing here is that you all have one common issue ( as I see it ) - You are both still thinking about your spouses happiness or in better words, what they are thinking.  We should all have the right to be happy, but at the expense of your misery?  Seems like it got you to where you are today.  My wife is still concerned about my happiness and it's fueling her anger.  I'm in a good place and I feel great about it, but my wife can't see that through the anger.  She will not sleep in the same room as me because she doesn't want me to get confused about how she feels.  admittedly I find that a bit amusing as I have no misconception about where I stand in her life.  She thinks that I'm miserable and she couldn't be farther from the truth.  She had done a lot for me over the years and sacrificed her own happiness for our family.  I get that, but I also know that in the 12 years together and listening to my excuses, I offer a lifetime of solutions.  I am in touch with myself as I've never understood before.  I never had a father growing up and I've never seen marriage until my own.  I didn't do the right things and I ask for no forgiveness of my ignorance.  I ask only for time.......

PJ - The reason I know my ADD is not my downfall or any of our years together is that none of that causes a mother to not want to come home at night.  May and June were tough on our kids and they asked me difficult questions constantly.  My short comings over the years do not make a mother abandon her children because she is unhappy with her spouse.  She comes home now because her son posted on his facebook account asking if anyone knew where his mother was.  She is now aware of how her actions are hurting the kids and I believe it's hurting her too.  My wife broke her back for a boy ( me ) and today I am a man.  She is a great mother, a gorgeous woman, an amazing wife and as stubborn as a mule.  All of that is on the back burner while the child in her is in the driver seat.  When the car slows down i'll introduce her to the man with solutions and acceptance and not the boy selling false goods.

Thank you PJ.  I'd like to hear more from you.........

Lu - Time heals all wounds, but I never quite grasped the concept of boundries.  You and Sherri speak of them often in your lives, but I don't grasp it.  I don't think they are wrong, but maybe they are more for people that are working together either in practice or theory.  I 'used' to get worked up, stressed out or hurt and it seemed I would explode like a soda bottle shook up.  The more I think about it, I can't seem to find that bottle anywhere anymore.  I could say it was the meds, but then the 2 weeks I didn't take any due to a mixup with a new healthcare plan, my attitude has not altered one bit.  I have not known any time in my life that I've been this happy or unstressed for this long and counting.  I'd love to share this with my wife sometime. 

Not to be picky DF, but

Not to be picky DF, but where's the "T" in "midlife crisis"? Lol, okay I get it. These forums are so helpful to get advice/ perspective but there are limitations. We all have unique experiences and viewpoints so thosw must be respected, especially when not knowing the full story of any one individual. I am glad you are happy. I dont think I can be quite that way, at least that is me. I WANT connection with my mate and barring that, I am dealing in the best way I can..for now. My Dh is most definitely experincing MLC as well as all the other things, and at the end of it... It does not matter what is the problem. I only know that the problem with us persists and while I love him, and I believe he does me- its not enough to reconcile things when he does not want to (while I do). So I am trying to find my happiness without his help. But I cant help but feel it sucks. And that I dont see living this life forever- do you in your case? Really?I respect that you have found calm in these stormy seas and hope you (and all) will continue to support me in mine- as I do for ALL of you.
DF's picture

No not forever

There is no forever Lu.  That's what my wife it thinking right now, but I know it's not forever.  For now it is what it is.  A year, 3 years, it's a blip on the marriage radar when we break it down in terms of 30 to 50 years.  When my wife and i talked last week she can't fathom that I'm not "unhappy" because things are not what they should be.  She doesn't believe me when I tell her I'm just fine.  She asked me if I was willing to sacrifice my happiness and quite honestly ( to my suprise ) I answered right back immediatly that I would sacrifice my life for her.  I was kind of suprised because for a bit there I was questioning if I wanted to lover her and I guess I found my answer.

She resents me, she will not sleep in our room together, be alone in a room with me or even look at me when we are talking and yet I feel no pain.  If this is crazy I'll take it cuz it sure beats how I was feeling the week before Fathers Day.  Perhaps I maintain my place because I choose not to think much about her or how she feels about me.  Again, I'm not the overtly religious type, but I'm just doing what feels right one day at a time and hit or miss, I feel pretty good.

What hurts, when I allow it too, is my oldest son is losing trust in his mother and my youngest is becoming more clinging to her.  Seems about right for kids in distress, but what can I do?  I just go about my business with the kids when they are with me and if difficult questions come up I offer them the knowledge that I love their mother and that I show her by giving her time and space.  I know it looks bad when I get a second hand invitation from her to join her and the kids and she's only asking out of obligation or because the kids are pleading, but the bottom line is she doesn't want me there.  There's no sincerity in her voice.  It really doesn't bother me at all.  I'm sad for our kids, but I try to do what I can for them.  I've learned that life isn't about always being able to pay for something to do with your kids, it's about being with them.  When I'm with them I enjoy them and I work on life lessons with them and make no mention of their mother or what she does.  I defend her when they complain to me and I insist that she loves them and they should continue to love her.  I choose not to be with them when she's around because I don't feel that it's good for them to see that there's unhappiness in her.  The good news is that since my switch got flipped, it seems the kids have noticed and they've stopped asking questions.  Kids are wonderful and can sense things and I believe they sense my happiness and that's the best thing I can do for all of us until my wife comes out of her fog......

I pray that you are right my

I pray that you are right my friend. I am touched by your comments about the kids, and not unlike what i am doing- though we both, DH and I, have made. Point to continue family outings and I think that is good for us. But these times are bookended by many other times when it is just the kids and me. They are getting used yo that, this going into the second year of this madness... Though I think I will pursue psychological counseling for the kids - they have seen to much nastiness. There is love from both parents- and I make sure they know that no matter what I am there for them (even when their Dad is not- his loss as much as theirs). I dont know DF, but I do pray for continued peace for you, for your wife and kids, and for all of us. Tall order but let it be so! :)

Df, i think i feel obligated

Df, i think i feel obligated to or that i'm supposed to "care" about his feelings. Our whole marriage has revolved around his low self esteem, his low self worth, and his neediness, and his co-dependency on me and everyone around him. His words "if things arent right between us, then i cant concentrate, i cant work and i dont care about anything else." its almost like i have to fix it or deal with it just so he will keep working since i stopped working to take care of the kids. No matter what his problem is, he gives it to me... I dont want it. I tried to "help" him with books, counseling, cd's, and anything else that would raise his self esteem. I have told him repeatedly that i am not respomsible for his feelings and he needs to figure it out for himself.. It's exhausting... And i really dont care. either he fixes it or he doesnt. I almost feel like i have to force myself to care and that is where the "sick to my stomach" thing comes in. i am surrounded by HIS family, asking about us and him all the time. I just lie. "everything is fine"... I just spent the night with his family and i had no idea where he is. He is out of town and i havent a clue where or the exact time of his arrival tomorrow evening. A bunch of eyebrows were raised, but "call him yourself". I dont care! I want to respect him, i want to look up to him, i want a grown up, i want to hang on his every word... But, he's isnt that kind of guy... At least not now anyway. He tells everyone that he is stupid, that he isnt a smart man, but yet, he expects me to listen to every thing that he says and not ever question it! I am not that person. I will challenge if i know i am right and i usually am. (i am not being jerk, i love to learn and i research and i absorb everything... I want to learn) In response to your wife not coming home to your children, that baffles me, and disappoints me at the same time. I could never leave my children, let alone leave them with him... They are what makes me get out of bed every day. They are why i exist. Did she think the kids wouldnt need her? I came from a broken family. 3 dads, i moved over 20 times, 11 different schools and a lot of bs in-between. Mom basically abandoned me while i still lived with her. She just wasnt there for me. I survived, i raised myself, i protected myself and struggled and fought as hard as i could to come out ok. The thing that attracted me to my dh was the fact that no one ever divorced in his family... Major religious families and i thought i would learn how to love and stay together... These people beat eachother down emotionally, but they stay together... I see it, but i am tired. I am tired of wanting him to see that i am smart, that i do have my own thoughts and that i make my own decisions and i am extremely independent. I have fought so hard for him to see this. Sometimes i think he sees it but chooses to ignore it because that is all he knows... His dad is the mean king of the household. It is so ridiculous. His mom is blatantly treated like an idiot. She is so submissive - I think my dh thinks i am to do the same.... Its a different kind of battle that these other women on this site are struggling and fighting for. I am fighting for me. Or what is left of the shell of me. When we argue, its all about how i show no affection, how i am so cold, how i dont show how i care.... I think that all went away when he shoved me(the real me) down in some dark deep hole.... I allowed it because i was hoping that it meant that i loved him. Now, i see that it meant that i didnt value me enough, that i didnt fight hard enough. Although i fought like hell, it wasnt enough for him to see that i matter. When i would throw his words back at him, he would deny to the death that he ever said those things to me, or he would just say really awful things and "not remember them..." That is the adhd.... In the heat of the moment, he will deny, lie, defend, and throw anything back at me, pick something that happened years ago and throw it in my face - no matter how small and blow it up into a huge thing, and then spin, and spin, and spin.... I am tired, and more tired and empty. There is nothing left, i think i feel some compassion for him because he is not as bad as some of the others on here... I think in that sense i think about him. But, when i see him, i just freeze. I really dont know where to go to from here... Maybe time will tell. Df, I just wish he would get some of what you have found then he would take some accountability for himself and his own feelings and his own person.... Then not blame me because he feels bad about himself.

PJ, I have been there too but...

I understand your anger but can I say this? TRY TO LET IT GO FOR YOUR SAKE. If you allow this anger to persist, to eat you alive it gives it a power that serves to waste even more years of your life. PJ, I do get it. I have been there. But for some reason, if nothing else- reading and understanding adhd has been hugely liftong FOR ME. All these years I thought I was going crazy, thought he was crazy, thought I was at fault..pick the scenario and we were there. Well, that anger is gone. Even as i can look at my DH and say, will you please respond and stop acting like such an ahole please (yes, I actually said that recently in a calm and matter of fact voice- and he did, for that moment anyway, amazingly)- I dont ever want to ride THaT particular rollercoaster again. Losing that anger gets you off that ride. Don't let it have the power as much as you can. Even as I can admit, I may slip occasionally- I can also say with confidence that it will never be like it was. it's not about him in this case. It is about US.

Thanks lulu, its almost like

Thanks lulu, its almost like if i can stop the anger, it means he has all the control to hurt or disappoint me again. Maybe the anger is protecting me? Im not using it as a weapon, but i think as protection. I have been thinking a lot about what you said and i am not ready to be vulnerable again. I know if anything happens i'll want to leave and i'm not ready to make that decision yet. And i dont want my kids to come from a broken home.... However, its broken anyway. One day at a time is all i can do.

Hi PJ

Yes, I understand that- having lived that from 2006 to 2009 when, by that point the anger was intense. It was not a happy time for me, and I dont like thinking about it. It also made me, I realize, act in ways that were not me (and at times pretty mean myself). The big changeover was when I realized how much of my Dhs behaviot was rrooted in the ADD as well as his resultant low self esteem. Who knew that his was worse than mine, and mine was pretty low. Dont get me wrong, it does not excuse the mean behavior. But for us, our relationship had been messed up by his Add, my low self esteem (toxic in its own right) and now - between the drugs which have both beneficial but also, unfortunately bad side effects sometimes made worse by his substamce abuse AND his midlife realization that "Im going to take care of ME now" has moved us into whole new territory. It has verged, imho, into mental disorder realm- and even then it keeps my anger at bay. He is responsible for his rude actions yes, but his ISSuEs keep him at a point that he wont allow himself true happiness (I believe). He gets his joy out if work, the bottle, and spending money he does not have. He is in lala land, while I am determined to let my kids and I pursue happiness ourselves. Plus I need us to be safe (from financial breakdown, among other things). No one else, I realize now, will help us..its up to me. So I dont want to waste any more time in that old song. He HAS to figure it out himself. And I will try to keep doing what I am doing- with better happiness I hope (see my other posts for that). I wont lie though- I am very lonely despite my best efforts (that comfort zone of being so alone has never been my strong suit like it is for some). Therapy and work is helping me somewhat on that score. And it is a struggle- but losing that particular anger albatross helped me exit "crazytown"-- that tumultuous WTH is going on, just please STOP STOP feeling all the time. PJ, I dont want to talk over what your present coping method is protecting you from. i just want to throw out the idea that there are alternatives that may help you move forward and AWAY from the giving that power (feeling potentially so vulnerable) a stronger voice by living constantly in that anger yourself (as I had done). Thinking positive thoughts today (even if it kills me, lol- just kidding!).

Believe you me, no one here

Believe you me, no one here understands this way of thinking more than myself. NO ONE. I didn't even recognize my anger as 'something I am responsible for' until 1.5 years of counseling pointed it out to me. What I keep trying to remind myself is that my anger TRULY has nothing to do with him. My anger is a reflection of my own codependency. I am angry because I cannot just look at him and say 'stop doing all of these destructive things' and it work. I am angry because he won't do what I say/want him to do/need him to do...and not do the things that are so very hurtful. I am angry because he's not the nicest person in the world sometimes.

Ask yourself two very hard questions...why are you angry and what does it change?

The anger keeps your home broken just as much as your husband's ADHD does. I know it feels justified. It feels safe. God, how safe it feels to just stay pissed as hell and to keep those walls up. Truth is, the anger isn't protecting you from ANYTHING. You're still getting hurt or you wouldn't still be angry. You're still experiencing disappointment from him or you wouldn't still be holding onto your anger like an old safety blanket. You are not able to separate yourself, your existence from his, and that terrifies you. The anger makes you feel safe from being alone. Deep down, I bet you're using the anger as a weapon and don't even know it.

You have to really, really, REALLY dig deep to understand that giving up the anger does not mean you give up ANY control. As a matter of fact, if you're like a lot of us, you have many legitimate reasons to be angry and every right to whatever emotions you feel. However, how you choose to react to that anger is 100% your choice. As a matter of fact, getting angry gives AWAY your control. It shows that you are not in control of yourself, but you are letting his ADHD/disorder/behaviors control you.

My husband thinks that as long as I am not mad at him, speaking to him, that everything is 100% perfectly fine with the world. We can be on the brink of divorce in my 'reality' but if I'm being nice to him, then his 'reality' is that everything is just fine. I get why you feel that if you just let go of the anger he thinks he's won. He can misread this as you 'accepting' his hurtful behaviors. I completely get that 100%...and it was/is one of the main reasons I did not/do not want to let go of my anger either. However, you can let go of the anger and still be honest about how you feel about the marriage. Why spend 30 minutes...1 hour...1/2 a day arguing over something they did or said when you can simply say "this is a behavior that is hurtful to me and one that I will not accept. If you choose to do nothing about it, I am afraid our marriage won't last" and be done. It accomplishes the same thing that a 2 day long fight accomplishes. It takes the anger (what they usually claim is the problem with the marriage) out of the equation.

I know that for me I am afraid to let go of the anger because it feels like I'm at least controlling something in my completely out of control marriage. It is an illusion. I am afraid if I just let go...and let him be responsible for his own actions and own consequences that it will cost us everything. I am afraid we will end up divorced and financially ruined. BUT the time comes to truly accept that we are ultimately NOT able to control them AT ALL and that the anger is a HUGE lie we tell ourselves in order to just feel in control. The anger truly is as devastating to the marriage, family, children, and self as the ADHD is. I, for one, am sick of being a walking blob of festering, rotting anger. I'm working each minute of each day to face my own worst fears and be able to let go of the anger. I'm not afraid of giving up anything to him. I know the anger isn't protecting me from anything. I only hold onto it because I'm too scared to let go and accept life as it comes to me. The anger only makes things worse for ME...and for everyone else too. It has changed/accomplished NOTHING in the past 7 years...I mean absolutely nothing. Nothing meaningful and lasting anyway.

Please, for yourself...work on letting it go.

Everything is okeydoke as

Everything is okeydoke as long as I shut up...yes I know this too Sherri. My "way" is to let him know that I am hurt but said in a way that says: while you live in lalaland, you should know this: you are blatantly hurting your family.". Maybe it doesnt change anything but it releases stress for me- feeling like I am not "allowed" to say anything for fear of eggshells is something I wont do anymore. But then, after that, I try to move on with my day. With my life. With my children and my happiness. So there negativity! I will try to spit in its face and find some joy that we ALL deserve in this moment. I will do this on my terms and hope he will come around. I do care and love him- but he is not being kind to us for his own reasons. And its his choice to keep or change them. Does this sound a little like Melissa's approach way back when? (I hope so.) It just occurred to me now.. Stay strong Sherri,PJ, and all- this may or may not feel like lemons but regardless: let us have some peace and joy without the guilt, fear, and baggage.

Sherri, does that really work?

One of the long-running problems I have with my husband is that he can't focus on a drink long enough to drink it. (Not talking about alcohol, here-just glasses of water or juice.) So he leaves them around attracting bugs and getting spilled.

So he left one on MY nightstand last night. He goes to bed before I do. (I couldn't sleep as long as he does if my life depended on it.) When I came to bed in the dark I spilled it on my side of the bed. I said "I can't believe you did that again." He is like "Sorry" and rolls over to go back to sleep, like I'm supposed to sleep on a wet bed. (We only have the one bed.)

So I got mad! I told him "You have to get up and turn the mattress over and get new sheets" and he did. His original thought was just to apologize and go back to sleep, but when I got angry he solved the problem. Should I just have let him think it was all right to let me sleep in a puddle?

This is just a small example. I think if I didn't get angry he'd think it was OK not to work, not to help with the housework, not to do anything.

I guess I just see this as a

I guess I just see this as a reason to be angry, but not necessarily a cause to yell or scream or express the anger in a way that further pushes them into the low-self-worth ADHD hell. How about "Oh damn..I just spilled this glass of (water/juice) on my side of the bed..Sorry but you're going to have to get up and flip the mattress and help me change the sheets". I can understand being a little frustrated at his initial "big deal" attitude...but if it takes you saying "um...sorry honey...we need to get this cleaned up" for him to get that you're not just going to ignore it and sleep in it then so be it. My husband would probably just leave it and scoot over closer to me. Things like this just do not bother them like they bother us. It is hard for us to get that, but in the grand scheme of things, it isn't that they're wrong or evil or malicious...they just don't care like we do.

I am 43 years old...and I leave half full glasses of water/coffee/tea sitting on my bedside table almost daily...probably gathering them 2-3 times a week to wash them. The cats and dogs have spilled them...I have spilled them...my daughter has spilled them...my niece has spilled them. I've had to sleep without sheets on the bed because of a late, late night spill (We only have one set of plain sheets and one set of fuzzy sheets..and DH HATES the fuzzy sheets). I would not want anyone telling me I could not have a drink beside of the bed because of it..or being angry at me if it got spilled. Get him his own table for his side of the bed...or a corner shelf..or something...so he can put it on his side of the bed and if it gets spilled occasionally, it isn't the end of the world. My husband smokes in bed...sets his ashtray on the bed...gets ashes all over his side of the bed. It's grose. He basically sleeps in the middle of our bed. (King sized) I hate it. I wouldn't sleep on his side of the bed even just 1 or 2 days after I wash our sheets. But..I have never said a word to him about it because it is his bed too. Period.

I do not know how you go about motivating him to look for a job...but I honestly do not feel anger is the only option. I would even venture a guess that anger might just make things worse.

That is the frustrating

That is the frustrating thing.  Why do we have to get angry in order for them to step up to the plate to work, help with housework or anything else?  Why can't they just do what needs to be done! 

Yes, this is key for me

Yes, this is key for me too...making my point, letting go of the fear of pissing him off/overwhelming him/making him feel bad about himself and dealing with my feelings as they arise as opposed to letting it all build up and I explode, and then moving on with my day/life. A lot of the time I don't even mention things, not giving him a chance to explain, and I let the little things add up to the point that I am about to lose my mind. I realized that the reason I do this is because I worry that if I bring them up when they happen (which is often) then I will be creating a hostile environment. More to the point, he'll always feel on the defensive because I will always be coming at him with something. There is typically no 'easy' way to address my issues of trust and when I feel he is lying to me. I have to get past it. I have to learn to just speak my mind and let the chips fall where they may. Otherwise I'll end up losing my mind again like I did a couple of weeks ago and creating a whole lot more hurt feelings (for us both) and damage. He is just going to have to learn to deal with things and be able to move forward too. I'm not talking things like him not helping around the house or not finishing project, I'm talking things like me catching him in a lie (usually about very stupid stuff...but if he'll lie about one thing...) or him behaving in a way that leads me to believe he is 'self medicating'. Stuff that really matters. No more eggshells for me either. No more caring more about/worrying more about him/his feelings than my own. No more worrying about his sanity more than my own. I've always felt I had to keep him 'sane' by keeping the peace for fear that he would lose his job (I think PJ said something about her DH saying he cannot function if they aren't getting along...mine is the same way). I am not looking for anything more than peace itself, and I'm not looking to fight with him, make him feel bad about himself, or to make his life miserable. I DO care immensely about his feelings and happiness, just not at the expense of my own anymore. I'm hoping once I get there that the happier, gentler (but honest) me will motivate him to want better for himself too.

 

DF's picture

Can I speak in 50 words or less....no

PJ - I like what Sherri is saying.  My translation is, "If they are acting like an teenager then treat them like one." - Nice.  Much of what can be seen in some ADD(HD) behaviors in my minds eye, is the fact that many of us choose not to see the problem.  As Sherri says - If all seems well then it must be and I must have done the right thing since you're not mad anymore.  I look at my wife and I can see why she's so infuriated with me.  I read your reply to me and there are similarities and stark differences.......

- I do not treat my wife as a fool, although she hated asking me for help with the computer because I always just wanted to do it since I could do it faster or not at all - that is frustrating for her for sure. 

- I feel like a fool every time I failed her expectations "as I perceived" them and I responded with frustration because I'm well read and spoken and I know I'm not an idiot.  Failure makes me feel more inadequate than if I were to suffer from erectile disfunction.  I can say that because I don't know what ED is like I guess.

Bottom line is that I did not know how to be a partner.  I had puppy love in the 6th and 8th grade and the brutality of the end of those crushed me.  Seems like BS I suppose, but I did not grow up with a father to help me understand and I did not relate to my mother so I've never trusted anyone since then.  I have a much better idea now what it is I need to do and want to do.  I feel like a kid again because I don't feel pinned down by me anymore.

Another difference is the in-laws.  They do not like the way I'm being treated, but I find no strength in that.  Sister-in-law doesn't blame me if I choose to leave, but that I should know that her home is always open because I am family.  Mother-in-law pleaded with me to reach out to her if I need anything because there's nothing she can do about my wife and that she wants me to hold on.  Father-in-law seems afraid to say anything in the event the anger gets shifted to him ( smart man ).  Brother-in-law knows enough to not say anything and hope for a resolution that keeps us together, but he talks to my sister-in-law and he's with them.  None of this helps me.  It only emboldens my wife's feelings that nobody, even me, understands what's going on. 

I get that she's angry, but like Sherri says, it takes a strong effort to soften that wall.  Your spouse is not where I'm at, but I don't understand where I'm at.  I have full acceptance of my ADD and my work on myself is work I've been doing alone for over a year now.  I do not look for a light at the end of the tunnel because I don't believe I'm in the tunnel anymore.  But where this ends up or if I find myself back in some sort of remission, I just don't know.  My wife is stubborn and she's bound to piss me off again and again, but I suppose the difference is I can identify what it is I'm "feeling" and I'm not afraid to talk to her.  I feel for the first time that my plane is flying on my will and enough holes have been patched on the wings so that the flight is smooth even if there's still holes.

I've read so many things people have been saying about there spouses and aside from ADDWife and YYZ, I don't see many more that are really working on their issues and learning about them as they go.  It takes massive amounts of personal insight that some people just can't maintain.  Maybe it's because I've always been a deep thinker of sorts, I just don't know.  I would love for it to be just as easy for you all, well not easy but it just feels that way.  The idea of letting go of the yoke and letting your ADD(HD) spouse fly their own damn plane either into the ground a smoothly seems impossible.  We all agree that the person we married is inside still and for most people, me included, it takes getting kicked in the testes so hard they come out your nose.  You are not the pilot of their plane and if it goes down it's knowing you're going to walk away just fine that should give you your peace of mind.

Sherri - Get a job.  Easier said than done.  I'm just saying it so you stop thinking about it.  Open a seperate account with your new job so he never sees the money so that he doesn't see the income he may end up spending.  It's a great place to feel accomplishment and feel human once more.  I agree with Melissa in that I would not pursue a working relationship with a part time friend.  Your spouse may be feeling the stress of trying/failing to support your needs and his actions are to lash out at you or do things that he knows makes you angry because he wants you to know he's angry.  You have a lot of strength Sherri, imagine what the power of independence could do for you.  It's not about separation or divorce, it's about you.  You're a giver and even though you have kids that need you, there's nothing wrong with giving yourself something.  As I'm seeing with my kids, they appear to be responding positively to my new outlook on me and life in general. 

Df, I like the idea of

Df, I like the idea of co-existing in the way i kind of see your situation.(i.e., how you are taking care of you; not the one person is ok and the other person is not) I think if we had that, eventually a mutual respect would develop as long as both people didnt force each of their expectations on each other. His expectations of me are to "give him his self worth" via any and all means possible since he is incapable of doing that for himself. I dont want that job. I never did and to expect that of another person is a quick way to failure and more self hatred. I have felt the weight of that pressure for 15 years. If i was free of that expectation, i think i could try again. If he took control of himself and released me from that job, i could breathe and not feel like i had to do any and all that a spouse/partner/wife would freely do. Of course the other adhd mania/depression stuff would still be there but it may not be as exacerbated since the feelings of self worth would be present. who knows...? Maybe i am wrong. His hyper focus is on me, has always been, and what i am not giving him, or not doing for him. I know, the exact opposite of what our friends are dealing with, with their spouses and the spouses lack of interest in them. I have no desire to do the affection, the caring, and the niceties for him because i am totally shut down and dead inside. I could care less what he does or how he does it. I just am not at that happy place, i am still grrr! I really appreciate everyones thoughts. It really helps to see anothers perspective. Thx. talk to yall later.

Sherri, I am mad because i feel like

I am mad because i feel like an idiot, i feel like i put all my eggs in one basket. I am mad because i thought finally someone would be there to take care of me, that finally my life wouldnt be so hard.... I have egg on my face. I am mad at me. I am disappointed in him, but i am more disappointed in me for even thinking someone would be there for me. I know i make and control my own life, i know i can not fully blame him for his inadequacies because i am here too. He frustrates and irritates me, but ultimately, i am mad at me for making my choices. I am so eternally grateful for my children and knowing i couldnt have them without him.... But i am mad at where i am now. I feel stupid and i feel ilke an idiot and have no one to blame but me... I put me here.... That is the real source of my anger.... Trying to figure out where to go from here, how to forgive myself for this decision and my choices is another uphill battle that i need to figure out for myself. That makes me mad too, that there is always so much hard work... And, if i do decide to let go of my irritation and anger at him (my reason for my anger at myself) then that is more work. I am so flippin tired. Im tired of making what i feel are bad choices. And i'm tired of having to start from scratch all the damn time and regroup and move forward.... Ugh, i am mad for even thinking i could trust another person with me, with my feelings, with my life, with my whole person... What the hell was i thinking! I never, ever wanted to get married... I thought i would somehow be a mom and be the mom i never had and live happily ever after.... What a crock. He is the trigger, and what i see in him is my decision...on how i would treat myself. I made a mistake. I needed to value myself more. I have no one to blame but myself.
DF's picture

PJ....you sure?

Holy Moley!  Aside for the descriptions I've read of your husbands' condition I would swear you are my wife!

She doesn't think I understand any of that, but really I do.  I didn't 2 months ago when I was asking for someone to say what you are saying, but I do get it now.  PJ, there is a rhyme and reason for everything.  Some of us grow up and I like to think I may have - finally, even if not everything works out.  Most all of what you are saying above has been the burden of my existence with my wonderful wife.  I put so much pressure on myself to support her and be what I "imagined" I am supposed to be.  I say imagined because I always thought that if I got the big house and luxury car she would be happy, but that's not it at all.  Not because we don't have the big house and luxury car, but because that's not what she was wanting.  Yes those things are nice, but they do not bring happiness.  A partner, a lover and a friend is what she wanted from me and did not get.

You did not make a bad choice, I believe things are what they are and we can make our own happiness.  It's when we forget who we are that we become unhappy and search for outside answers for fault and/or resolution, but never find it.  You have a great amount of hurt and I see it whenever I see my wife.  Just this past week we've made eye contact more than we had in a month.  Damn it PJ!  You're tired and I know it and I see it, but who better to muscle their way through the hardship than you?!  Is it fair?  No!  Is it what you wanted?  No!  Do you deserve it? Hell No!  But you have a chance.  There's always a chance and I know from my own situation that the chance is microscopic, but it's a start......

Anger is not indifference.  Forgiveness is not weakness.  The shell you have built around yourself is unrelenting, but not impenetrable.  I do hope your spouse gets to where I am, because I know that if my wife could openly talk about her anger we could work to rebuild.  Your spouse doesn't seem ready to receive that gift, but I don't speak for him.  I'm speaking to the first person I have seen in over a year that resembles my wife's feelings towards me.  You are a step ahead of her as I am a step ahead of your spouse.   You have to give at some point.  You and my wife have to get to a point where you ask yourself a question and I don't know that exact question because it doesn't apply to me or your spouse, but it ends with us.  Only you will know what that question is and it may be the same or different for my wife, but it will be at that point that if you choose your spouse, it is my gut that tells me that you are ready.  It's not a wake up moment, but it's when you finally realize you're not just thankful for your kids.  That seems simple, but it's meant to be because it starts somewhere just as a novel begins with a sentance - you've closed a book PJ, it's over.  The anger is the indecision about which book you're going to write next.  I'm so excited PJ - I believe in you and I don't even know you!

I gave up on hope a short while ago because I learned how to believe in me and not on what I can't control of be responsible for.  I will re-read what you have written above constantly because I find it exhilarating.  There's a reason for everything PJ and had I read what you said above months ago I would not have heard you.  Just read my blog on "Does the anger ever really go away".  I left this site for a short time and came back changed for the better.  Finding you here PJ makes me thankful I have brown hair........ just one of many things -

You are the best PJ!

 

Thanks, df, i have tears

Thanks, df, i have tears streaming down my face and i dont even know what for.... Will talk soon and i will check out the blog. Have some stuff to do before i can sit down and write again. Crossing my fingers for you too.

Now, if he were only where

Now, if he were only where you are... Then i would have some work to do. You make it sound encouraging, although, i'm living in the movie ground hog day. Only time will tell. Thank you, you are so far, along with yyz, giving me hope that perhaps i could see a happier ending... Please keep posting. : )
DF's picture

Doing my best to hyjack Sherri's post again...

I don't see an ending in sight in my case.

I used to see a light at the end of the tunnel or "hoped" there was one, but I see no end.  This is not bad though, because I'm not in a tunnel anymore and I only see today and when tomorrow arrives I'll see it too, but too far beyond that brings about possibilities that can't be accounted for.  Maybe that's the key to my happiness as of late - I stopped looking too far ahead.  There's too many intangibles that can alter a course.  Now in all fairness, I have been thinking in my mind about the things I will need to purchase if my wife follows through with a divorce, but it doesn't bring me down at all.  What will come will come in its' time.  Where my wife's, and your anger are concerned, there should be no attempts made to expedite the process of healing.  I see us as not having found each other by chance and like you, she did not ever see herself married either.  Sounds a bit like fate to me and I have the honor of being the guy that changed her world.

PJ - you're here for answers and hope.  I offer you my humble thoughts - hope is what you make of it and it is ever changing.  Don't put too much into it because while it feels like direction it is actually misguided.  Hope builds on itself until it becomes unrealistic - "I hope it doesn't rain today", turns out it didn't rain, but it's 100 degrees and you wore jeans.  You either hope it cools off faster than it will or you are let down by your "current" discomfort and forget that you should be happy it didn't rain, as you had hoped.  Hope gives us a warm blanket that helps us sleep at night, but is easily forgotten in either good or bad situations.  Look no further than the awesome movie Groundhog Day that you mention.  Each day he hoped he would wake up in tomorrow.  After constantly hoping and nothing changing he got depressed.  Are you seeing where I'm going with this......?  Bill's character sought guidance from within and found his happiness and once that was found he no longer hoped.  It was only then that he saw tomorrow......

I think I just made myself dizzy.  Ugh!  Bottom line is this - while hope and answers give us direction, we will always know what's right when we listen to what our insides are telling us.  This wonderful website offers us kinship, kindness, guidance and thought provoking insight.  Putting it all together makes tomorrow easier to wake up too, but if you can use it to help you let go ( a common theme in these forums ) then you stop looking for miracles and start making small ones of your own into big ones.

PJ I read about how you've been in couples therapy for 10 years and how he uses alcohol to escape.  What stood out was that you spoke of the bbq where he did not drink - he did that for you.  He wants you to know you're important to him, but he hasn't got the right tools yet to know what the job is he needs to do.  You are angry and having to tell him what that job is only makes you feel more angry that he should be so incompetent.  I'm only speculating and could be way far off - sorry.  Heck I painted several rooms in my home as a suprise for my wife when she went out of town for two days - preMLC.  When she came home she was shocked because she knows how much I hate painting and the colors were the exact ones I knew she wanted.  I busted my butt to get it all done in time and the house cleaned and spotless.  When she asked me why I did it I honestly didn't know and I remember telling her that I wanted to do that for her.  Having the proper tools now vs. then, I know that I did that for her because I wanted her to know how important she is to me and that I just hadn't known how to articulate that to her.

So today and not much longer after the paint job over a year ago, she's been angry just like you.  You remember what I said to you above - "It's not a wake up moment, but it's when you finally realize you're not just thankful for your kids." - I'm thankful I was able to paint those rooms for her and suprise her.  She doesn't even notice the color to be thankful the color was her perfect choice.  Anger is a true bitch PJ, but you're here and my wife isn't.  Whether you're ready to give your spouse an inch or not, you're still closer to the truth than my wife is.  What's your gut telling you now? 

Good luck Groundhog.......

You have dropped so many

You have dropped so many jewels in your posts in the last few days I don't even know where to start responding. I'm going to start by re-reading. Then I will try and work up a response worthy of your wisdom. I have laughed (getting kicked in the testes) and had numerous moments of 'damn, this guy really is enlightened'. Again, don't know where to start...be back when I do.

One thing I do want to mention...I think you're onto something with the MLC thing and your wife. What has always made her behavior strike me as 'more than just pissed at you' and bitter is her leaving the kids so often. Maybe even look into depression? No one just flips the switch and steps out of their kids' lives to the extent that she has without some reason. No matter how pissed I would ever be at my husband, I would never do that. I know you go out of your way to make it a point to never really paint her in a negative light, and I repect that tremendously, but I think you have shared enough that it points to something larger than just her being angry with you.

More later! :-)

Groundhog! I was so

Groundhog! I was so entrenched in my own debbie downer moment that i didnt see the true meaning of groundhog day. I was thinking how things dont ever change, maybe i should have referred to 10 second Tom from 50 first dates! God, your last posting above sounds very "done"... However, I think you have hit the acceptance stage in the 5 stages of grief. You are moving on and you accept where you are... Now what is the next stage.... I have to look it up. Whatever it is, i am proud of you, you are still here and you are still going forward. It scares me to hear that she hasnt softened, not one bit. I remember the end of each marriage my mom put us through. It was a very empty, lonely, helpless place. There was nothing i could do to fix or stop it. I have this terrible feeling from your posting... I Pray that i am way wrong. If YOU cant get it right, then who can? I'm almost tempted to beg and plead with you the same way i did with my dad to try to fix it when my mom told him to leave. Well, we all know how that turned out. she found some other loser to take care, oops, feed us. Hmmm, Now, what is MY next step, my next chapter? Well, i was hoping to see how it all turned out on your end to see if there is a "work in progress resolve", not a "im standing here and your standing over there" resolve... I dont know, im more sad now.... I get the anger, but i cant see being angry forever - at least for the kids sake- but, its hard, because i dont know if this is a hyper focus fix... Or if this is a lifetime fix.... (it has only been a month or so since i finallu got through to him about how angry i really am) I dont know how to hold myself to be ready for the next "thing".... Now, about YOU, IF she is going to end it, you are prepared, you have nothing to lose at this point, so maybe sit down and have a conversation to call a truce... I kinda wrote one out earlier today, but you may know a better way. If you are ready and If you think its over, then omg, i dont want to say this, but you need to know and she needs to know, maybe SHE needs a good kick in the testes now so she can see what she wants to do. You have One more shot to propose counseling? One more shot for the kids with counseling, or propose counseling to end the marriage... Counseling is the way to even if she doesnt want to hear it, she did some damage to them. (unintentionally, but they wont forget worrying about her...) They may seem fine, but it will haunt them and it could mess up their future relationships too. If she wont go, then you take the kids, you have a right to take them AND ask her to come too. This way she can tell her side to make sure she isnt painted in the way she may perceive it will be said without her... I think she would feel she would have to go if you took the kids. (i have a feeling what your response will be about counseling... I just thought i would give it another shot. You have done a hell of a job learning about you, taking care of you, and growing into you!!! Btw, what is school for? Are you done yet? (i took out some earlier remarks about adandonment, i saw below some of your thoughts on that, sorry)
DF's picture

My Dear Dear Goundhog - slow down a sec

 I hope you don't mind my calling you that sometimes PJ.  I love that you name dropped that awesome movie and it fit so well into what I wanted to say to you.

School - just trying to finish it - the third time.  It's for me and an example I can set for my kids that college is important and to never say never.  I have about 1.5 years left.  Funny how much easier it is when you care about it.  Being a grown up is fun!

Anywho -

Slow down PJ.  I'm not gearing up for divorce, I've only accepted that she may see that as her only option.  It does not play a role in my daily life at all.  I do not fear losing her and I see adventure if she chooses to stay or go.  There is no other woman for me and I have no interest in others.  The adventure lies in that I'm either going to journey on and see what I'm capable of as an adult or she will be with me on this journey and I find that exciting too.  The thing I see differently, without knowing exactly your experience, is that there's no tension or hostility between two people where either both have given up or one is on their knees begging.  I am not giving my wife any reason to "want" to file and I'm not fighting myself to stay true to a particular path.  I love her and support her as I can without being intrusive.  Since we spoke last week, she's been much more cordial to me around the home and has looked me in the eyes on several occasions.  She's even initiated idle chit chat with me once or twice.   I want to be specific here - I have not changed regardless of these differences.  She is a torrent of emotion and she's as stubborn as a mule.  I'm the enemy and I know my place.  I will always be the enemy in her eyes until she has reconciled with everyone else in her life that she feels she needs to reconnect with.  I'm last, not first and she will show me her anger again.  I offer her patience, kindness and space.

You know that metaphore about how your bottle is so full it's going to explode?  Kind how things get when boiling up?  I don't have a bottle anymore, I have the world - at least that''s how I feel.  My wife still has her bottle and letting her allow me to listen to her last week relived a lot of pressure.  I did a lot of right things that evening, but the pressure is still building.  She's still fighting herself.  I have to let her fight.  She knows how much I love her.  I'm very creative and I've been amazed at how much I missed the challenge of knocking her out of her socks with my meager finances.  Let me tell you something - I'm knocking teeth loose as she's flying out of her socks.  My gift idea's rock!

PJ [Groundhog ;) ], I don't know anything about stages.  I looked into MLC stages, but when I couldn't decide which one my wife was in all I found was that it's not an exact science and people will often travel back and forth between them.  And with that I offer you caution.  You seem happier tonight and I'm glad for you.  You speak of questioning your next chapter, but you haven't chosen your novel yet.  I'm sure many writers consistently rewrite that first paragraph or chapter until they feel they got it just right. Your defiant anger that you introduced me to has turned into confusion.  Slow down and take it one day at a time.  Your spouse will slip up and lifelong depression doesn't just go away in a month.  He may get angry and lash out at you because he's hurt that he let you down and doesn't know how to act, such as a child would, or he may confront you and apologize and insist that he will keep trying.  I'm smiling for you PJ, I'm not all doom and gloom.  He has to learn new behaviors and maybe if it helps, treat him as though you were potty training your kids.  You don't have to be condesending, but you also don't have to badger him for pissing in his pants!

Goodnight!

 

Sherri: Yes, I know too well,

Yes, I know too well, unfortunately. Oddly, we are kind of at the same point in our relationship arent we? I would have done everything you said you did and then some. If you follow your gut, stay true to your sense of dignity and "truth, then no regrets, okay? I no longer feel I know the "right way" to do any of this relationship stuff except for the fact that we all must do what we feel is right. To try to protect our hearts and self identity. To love wjo we love but to try hard to not let ourselves be diminished in the process. You are so intuitive, Sherri, and have made a great impression on so many if us. Even as your husband (and mine) continue to act in ways that can be so hurtful (as i speak my Dh is still not home, no word)- I am moving forward. Kids need what they need. Best of all, I HAVE returned to work- and that has been hugely helpful. Start a little at a time, dont expect DHs help for the most part, and go from there. I did only a one day a week on the weekend to start about three years ago and steadily have been going from there. It is possible- and I think you might need this too (if you dont mind my saying). I have your (cyber) back girlfriend- trust in yourself too!

Yes, it would seem we are

Yes, it would seem we are both at a point where we are being tossed into the water and we either sink or swim. (become less co-dependent or become completely engulfed by ADHD)  Even when my husband is 'present' he isn't here. I've noticed that since he started meds I have barely seen him. He does have a lot going on at work, it is a legitimate reason for having to work so much. However, he came home around 5 today and went to bed. I had made supper and when he came to eat he was making smart a$$ed comments. I just asked him "why are you being that way? What is the reason?" and he was very snarky and said "I always have a reason to be a smart a$$" and left the room. After he ate he went to sleep and I went to watch TV. As soon as he saw I was coming to watch TV he woke up (not sure if that was because he didn't want me to change the channel or what..but I changed it anyway since he had been asleep). That was around 7. About an hour later I found out he is going up to the tattoo place (at 9 p.m.) to get his newest tattoo. So, what feels like his effort to not be in the same house with me continues. This started when he started meds. My theory is that he is being a jerk on them again, knows it, and is avoiding me so I will not notice. When we go back to the shrink I will just tell him that I have no idea how he's reacting to them because he's made every effort to avoid me. I dread the weekends.

He is fine during the day...while at work...while the meds are working.

I'm going tomorrow to apply for the work-study program at school. Even if I have to drive to the campus an extra day a week to get in the hours they require, that's Ok. It will be worth it to have some money of my own and some peace of mind. I'm also applying for tutoring jobs on wyzant.com and hoping that will pick up soon. I'm trying to find something to do that will allow me to still be with my kids most of the time they are home from school and be available if they need me. My son will only be in school for 3 more years...after that, I will probably be going back to work full-time (if not sooner) so I want to enjoy what little bit of time I have left. He's at a very delicate point with his seizures right now..just started a diet to treat his seizures in April and we probably have at least another year or so before the full effects of the diet are evident and things are settled. Right now, taking care of him IS a full-time job. Finding something I could do from home would be Heavenly, but those jobs just aren't readily available.

I want to get a dose of what DF has discovered...because I am like you, the behaviors (avoidance, being ugly, what happened at the class reunion) do still hurt. I am making note of each time I 'survive' one of the moments when I have the overwhelming urge to 'start' my obsessing and text or call him. I'm letting him make his own decisions and the consequences will be his own too. I've considered keeping a journal of how things go each day so that I can either see a pattern of improvement or not. I resist doing this because I don't want it to seem like I'm keeping score or not living in the moment...or that I'm focusing on the future and not just today. But, I think if I showed him a calendar of days and marked on them how much quality time we actually spent together each day he might be shocked. (or pissed...and defensive) Eh..for now, I'm OK. I am reaching out to friends and will be going out with them when the opportunity arises. I need that kind of support right now. I need to be around people that actually enjoy my company and who I can laugh with.

 

I hope you went out and had

I hope you went out and had fun with your friends. Last night, I hit a low point and broke down crying. The "stupid" thing being that something nice had happened for me and he was not home (again) to share the happiness with me, despite having said he would be. I did not want kids seeing me cry any more.. So I ran to starbucks and instead cried on the shoulder of a friend. Felt a Million times better and was out when he came home (drunk) so added benefit was it did not seem like I was home waiting for him crying into my pillow (or 10 ez ways to look pathetic/desperate to an already detached husband).. The good news is that Im cutting myself some slack for the momentary weakness and moving on... AND SEEING my shrink tomorrow in case I need help with that. It is worrisome- my Dh has been actjng just as you are describing- but it has gotten sometimes better - he does somethings I ask for. For example he may tell me where he has been..but still interdispersed with times when he is absolutely abhorrent. I love df's reminder of what Bill Murrays character learned after endless "todays": live in the moment. Act kindly to others. In the meantime let his brain get used to the meds, and keep living!! Incidentally, I had done both things- written a journal which was very cathartic but then mild to moderately depressing(!) upon reading AND i did give my DH a list once of how much he had been home. Big surprise- he already knew (duh!) because he is actively avoiding me, it just served to piss him off more... Last thing: I think what you are doing is plenty for now! School, work study job to set the ball rolling in a somewhat manageable way, and focua on your kids. I am doing this too and am fortunate at least right now to work mainly when the kids are in school- and am starting to make decent money at the same time. Just focus complering your studies while there is this opportunity!
DF's picture

My Dearest Lu:

I may be sending mixed signals so I will try to clarify before my workday starts.

Your insight on Groundhog Day is right.  Bill Murray was finally living in the moment.  After countless days of denial, then "fun", then depression, he found acceptance.  Lu, step away from Bill Murray's character for a moment and visualize your spouse in his shoes. 

I've seen that movie sooooo many times and yet I don't own a copy - odd.  Lets begin.....

Your spouse, we'll call him Murray as in the movie, began the movie as a selfish child.  Murry was only concerned about what he wanted like a child who sees a toy in the playground and just takes it from the child who has it for the sole reason that "it's mine.".  Being the child he accuses everyone else of being crazy when his day repeats itself and then he gets angry at them and lashes out at them because he is not crazy and they will not stop telling him otherwise.

Next.....

Murray realizes he has the freedom to do whatever he wants and no matter what, he will not get in trouble.  Murray goes about doing anything and everything his mind fancies regardless of how in reality we find it morally disturbing.  Here's the teenager.  Murray knows what he wants and does the necessary to get instant gratification, but can't understand why after all is said and done he can't find happiness.  In comes Andie ( Lu ).  The one person not taken by rues.  Murray spends endless days learning about Andie ( hyperfocusing ) intending to break her resolve to stay true to herself.  Murray can't understand why she will not succumb to his hyperfocus and as his frustrations mount, so does Andie's.

Next.....

Having seen the folly of his ways and feeling he will never have the person he wanted because he couldn't be the person he "thought" she wanted him to be, he goes into depression.  The teenager realizes he doesn't know everything, can't have everything and doesn't have the coping mechanisms in place to deal with hurt.  The depression turns to despair and Murray turns inside himself - Andie sees this and grows concerened, but cautious on her involvement.  She challenges him to think in order to help her understand, but she is not critical of him.  This gives him the tools necessary to grow up into a man and find out who he really is and what he wants. 

Next.....

Murray has taken a huge step into adulthood because he no longer thinks of himself, but of others.  He spends endless days trying to save a life that can't be saved.  He receives another tool to grow.  Acceptance of sorts.  He learns that he doesn't have to control other peoples lives, he's only responsible for his own actions.  He learns to love himself and is almost childlike in his eagerness to learn more about who he is and wants to be.  Andie is noticing and is wanting to be noticed.......

Murray learned the lesson that you can't make others happy if you're not happy with who you are.  You may think you're happy with who you are, I know I thought I was happy with guy I was some months back, but do you know who that person is? 

If Murray is your husband, how does he look to you now?  If you are Andie ( you too PJ/Sherri ), how do look to your spouse?

Lesson over.....

Anger, sadness, frustration, pain.  Those are all wonderful experiences that make it great to be alive, but do you want those things to define you?  Is that who you are?  Is it love you are talking about or the pain of neglect that leaves you wanting?

I'm nobody special.  I have no "friends" because I still have trust issues.  I didn't drink a magical potion or find someone to open me up.  I found my support element in me.  I made me happy - nobody else.  I'm not sad that the only "friends" I have who know the real me are you guys/gals and you don't even know who I am.  DF?  I could be living across the street from you or a continent away, but it's what I make of it that makes it a friendship.  I was in a bad place and I left you guys, but I'm back now and I couldn't be happier.  Heck I once feared the idea of a big reunion picnic where a whole slew of us met at one time.  What was once the fear of discovery, is replaced by tears of joy.

Thanks Df. We were writing to

Thanks Df. We were writing to each other at the same time. Lol. I appreciate your insights and comments and wl start my day (finalky) ruminating on them. Have a cheery!
DF's picture

Knuckle crackin' time.....

 Sherri I know I've kind of taken my focus and geared it towards PJ because her articulation of her anger fasinates me, but I'm talking to you and Lu and from what I'm seeing him write lately - YYZ.  So with all of you and the lurkers that are here, following along....

Sherri - You are failing in this post.

Now I say that with the most learned attention from someone who holds you dearly close to his heart.  I say this post because I see the Sherri I left here two months ago before I went on vacation providing elaborate and praise worthy insight in other posts in these forums.  There is a difference, because here I see Sherri, her heart, and in other posts I'm seeing Sherri, the hardened veteran of trench warfare.  I'm angry because you are turning my tears of joy to tears of frustration - could it be you felt this frustrated with me a few months back?

"...I want to get a dose of what DF has discovered..."  Step 1, here's your problem ->  "...he's made every effort to avoid me. I dread the weekends."

Yes, this is the path I was on that brought me to my low point.  Where I would beg for a fast weekend so that I could get to work and not see her hurt me when she left our home to go or do whatever or sit in a chair with her phone and do facebook, games, texting, emails or whatever to ignore me.  It was on weekends that in the presence of others that she ignored me openly and I felt like I couldn't crawl under a rock big enough or fast enough.  That poop is gone!  No more! 

Sherri the weekends are yours!  Take them back and own them and if he wants some of that then make him take it from you!  He controls you! Stop it for flippin' sake!  You want that anger management issue with you in your spare time or do you want the man who stops you at the door - "Dang it Sherri!  You're my wife and we're going to spend some time together.  Now where're we goin'?"

"...I want to get a dose of what DF has discovered..."  Step 2, here's your problem -> "...the behaviors (avoidance, being ugly, what happened at the class reunion) do still hurt.."

Newsflash - It's supposed to because YOU let it!  Is he the man you married or a rebellious teenager?  Meds?  They make a difference and I'm no expert having only tried one, but there's a burn-in period in my experience.  Either way, I'm responsible for me, your spouse is responsible for his own damn self, who are you responsible for - and don't default the answer with "kids" because you know what I mean.

"...I want to get a dose of what DF has discovered..."  Step 3, here's your problem ->  "...I am making note of each time I 'survive' one of the moments when I have the overwhelming urge to 'start' my obsessing and text or call him. I'm letting him make his own decisions and the consequences will be his own too.."

EPIC FAIL!!!!!  You had better stop this young Lady!  Look at what you're saying, really look at it.  You "survive" - Bull Poop!  You replaced the urge, as you put it, with documenting it and identifying it for what it is - obsession.  I know you're not actually writing it down, but what's so different here?  Look at that second sentence, read it and then place it in front of the "obsessing" sentence and read it again - You seeing what I'm seeing?  He ownes you!

Okay enough. 

I know you're great Sherri, but do you know it?  Don't just say you do, do you really "know" it for certain?   Not the part about being a great mother.  I'm talking about you.  I don't think you can answer that if what you have written above is truly how you feel.  How can you say you are great when you hurt as you do?  You recall some time ago how I "claimed" that because of who I am and what I would do for my wife and family that I was a "woman's wet dream for a husband"?  You remember that line?  Today I look back at that and laugh at how stupid I must have sounded to you and the others.  I was in such a hurtful place that I failed to see the truth - If you really believe in something, then you don't have to tell anyone what they already see.

Sherri if you want to make a journal, make it about you.  What makes you special?  I can start with what I know about you from what people say to you:

"I would like you to know, you're in my prayers. Bless your heart for staying strong..." - avie99309: 12/23/2010 - 21:01

"You are not crazy at all, you are trying to do the best for the family..." - going crazy: 12/07/2010 - 14:13

"Sherri, thanks for saying that.." - dedelight4: 06/28/2011 - 11:39

"You are brave, very very brave! I don't know how you do it! I just couldn't" - kmh: 06/21/2011 - 22:51

"I can hear the loving side of your marriage coming out...." - EinsteinHadItToo:  08/19/2010 - 17:51

"Thanks for your thoughts, I always appreciate your perspective from the other side of things I am still learning to understand." - yyz: 05/29/2011 - 11:42

"If only everyone could have that perspective!  THANK YOU for showing me that it is possible." - ADD Wife:  06/07/2011 - 01:38

"Sherri - What you said in that first paragraph is by far the coolest damn thing any stranger has ever said to me.  Thank you for that. That was awesome and it really hit home for me. I read you reply several times." -> DF: 05/11/2011 - 21:48

"...the only advice I can give you buddy is to keep trying. Be true to who you want to be, for you." -> Sherri13: 05/28/2011 - 18:30

That last line was you talking to me Sherri and now I'm giving it back to you.  You need it now, I've found me.  Please do not make me tear up again......

Damn, you look good in those

Damn, you look good in those boots!! (that you're kicking my ass with!) :-)

Yes..I know his behaviors control me. It's pathetic.  BUT what I mean when I say I 'survive' is that I'm progressing away from that. Each time I don't 'react' 'obsess' or 'bring attention to' his behaviors/avoidance then I feel like I am getting 'there'. I'm over 'here' right now, but I was WAAAAY over 'there', but I still need to get to 'that place over there' where it really doesn't bother me.

I think I am afraid not to 'be hurt' by it anymore...everytime this happens it really does scare me...because I am afraid I am falling out of love with him. Whew...that took a lot to admit. *sobs* How do you not let your wife's behavior hurt....oh, nevermind...I know the answer to this...YOU DON'T TAKE IT PERSONALLY and YOU ACCEPT THAT SHE IS RESPONSBILE FOR HER AND YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOU. My switch just hasn't flipped yet...but I'm getting there.

I think for us women who are so emotionally oriented, it takes a while for the dream to truly die, the acceptance to come, the grieving period to pass and for it to all STICK. I am in a very strange place even for me. I'm not sure how I got here or how I will get out...but the one thing I know about myself is that even if it takes me twice as long to 'get it' as it might everyone else, I will come out kicking...stronger than ever. For now I'm doing OK...but, before you say it, NO I don't want to JUST do OK in life...I have much grander goals and dreams than just OK. All in God's time.

I think what I would like for you to see is that I'm in and out of a very ugly place...but we all have to go through the ugly to get to the pretty. :o) Just keep kicking me with those damn powerful boots of yours...they are magical!

Off to get a drastic new hair style...something "I" like! :)

Much Love All!

Sherri

Good post DF. I am going to

Good post DF. I am going to text myself everyday the words: live in the moment/what is your gut telling you? For all my brave talk, my moments of weakness keep popping up in this difficult situation. Its not easy, and just like my spouse- well Im not perfect. I want happiness nut for now I will take moments of joy and peace.
DF's picture

I should add a disclaimer -

Lu, and anyone else, I am not a professional - even in my own mind I'm more than a bit goofy.  It was not long ago I was on this forum speaking of sadness and guilt.  With that said......

I'm not speaking from a place of sadness and guilt as of late.  For a year I questioned my gut and with my issues with anxiety it multiplied my pain ten fold.  Countless sleepless nights, low performance at work and grades in school dropping.  This is not my current situation and hasn't been for two months running(?).

It's easy for your gut to tell you what you want to hear - "He/She doesn't love me anymore!" and follow that up immedietly with that sinking feeling your gut gets.  It doesn't mean your gut is right, but maybe it's just telling you those thoughts are harmful to you.  For me personally, when I said those words in my mind and got that pang of hurt in my gut, it was immedietly followed by my mind questioning the truth of those words.  I was in constant battle within my self.

I guess, where I'm at right now is a difference of perspective. I was feeling low and the hurt in my gut went in line with that. Where I was once full of a tug-o-war match I kind of see it as my gut hurt because it was "showing" me how I felt and that it wasn't any fun.  You've read my old stuff - I re-read some last night and man I am so not that guy.

I'm a deep thinker by nature and maybe that helped get me to where I am emotionally.  It's not impossible and it may not be forever and that's why it's one day at a time for me.  MY GUT IS NOT ALWAYS RIGHT!  I have made some mistakes in these past two months.  Oddly enough, when I make a judgement that at first seems like a good choice and my gut agrees, my gut will also be the first to tell me that what just went down was probably not the best idea/approach.  I laugh a bit about it because if I could I'd ask my gut why it didn't push the eject button at the first sign of trouble.  We're human and we make mistakes and when I make a mistake my mind and my gut work together and not against each other.

Not every situation should be followed with your gut.  Your gut can't pick a winning stock.  Your mind has to work to catch up with your gut and then work to be in sync.......

Gosh, i feel like i have been

Gosh, i feel like i have been reading for hours and days, trying to catch up with everyone. DF, i read the blog on anger and what an amazing, gut wrenching journey. I wish i could say i'm sorry on behalf of your wife, but i will say i am sorry that you were in such pain. I can see it in my dh's face as well. Not much more i can do for him because he has to pick himself up, needs to figure out where to go and how to do it by himself. I'm only responsible for me now. I sound like a heartless person, but, i can't make him a man, or grow up for him. There are so many things i could comment on, and so many things that i felt were hilarious- they helped to make things not so grim. I found myself laughing out loud at some of "enough's" "FOR YOU" comments. I have thought some of those things too. It reminded me of a certain gift that came to me at christmas time... Our toaster oven burnt out and i couldnt find one that i thought would "go" with our kitchen and just never purchased one. Well, there was one under the xmas tree "FOR YOU" he said.... Thats not for me? Thats for the house... I didnt want that and it doesnt "go" with the kitchen, so the kitchen doesnt want it either... I am still laughing. I never thought in a million years i would get a house gift for xmas. I fooled myslef into thinking maybe it was a computer, knowing damn well that we couldnt afford it. Anyway, i digress. I am impressed with your struggle to look inside to fix your self and for your ability to not blame and take everyone down with you. I am impressed by how you Chose to let her do her thing even to your detriment, but i was hoping to hear a little more " umph ", i cant find the word, just something in there that would tell her "enough". A year is really long. I know i've dealt with drama and poor decisions, poor behavior, and just been miserable, but i didnt sit in "drama" every minute of the day for 15 years.... I had many, many, many, sucky days and months, but there were moments when i could gain strength, regroup, and keep going. She's not even on pause for a minute... It must take some major strength to keep it going and going. it made me wonder if she is in a deep "i am a bad person, everyone knows, my kids hate me, my family hates me, my friends are starting to turn on me and therefor, i'm not going to be where i am not wanted or needed.... "I just cant justify, by any means, a mother abandoning her children. (my mother did this to me, but it wasnt because she was mad at her husband, it was because she could've cared less about any impact her decisions had on me) I guess i was waiting to see if you were going to come in like some famous big awesome dude and say after a year or so " ok, you have had your time to think and regroup and time to mourn the idea of what you thought our marriage would be", (there are 5 stages of grief that come into play here too) she could be stuck in one of those stages and not even know it, however, you cant stay there too long or it becomes unhealthy. "but, now, we need to put our heads together and come up with a plan. Do we stay together is the first question, only you can answer that. If you decide yes, then we need to figure this out with the best intention of putting our children's happiness in the equation because they have been emotionally hurt and we have left a mark on them that they will never forget". If you dont want to be together, then we need to go to counseling to do it the best way for the kids. Maybe she is wanting you to step up and take charge and take care of her in a non-threatening way... Do something that makes her look up to you. The one thing that was missing, was communication... You shut down, you shut her down when you did that too, maybe it's time to keep talking. And asking her thoughts on various things and hear them, not challenge them, but try to be intersted and get to know how her mind works. Ask questions that come up on the top stories of the day "what would you do, or what are your thoughts on that" and only give your thoughts if she asks....ask how friends are, work is, how she thinks kids are doing? Anything that gets her to "think" and talk to you. I dont mean just idle chit chat though, you want her to see you are that wise old man looking for a nice, non confrontational conversation, one that you might have with a grandpa or a mentor. Mentors check in on you, they really want to know how you are and they only give you guidance when you ask for it... I think we forget to be kind when talking to our spouses because all we hear is a bunch of bs, whining, "im better than so and so", or just plain "me, me, me" stuff. I know you have backed way off and you are happy in your place, but maybe this could be a bridge to a mutual "partnership" for the kids sake. I would feel better with the word partnership because the word "marriage" has become "ownership" in my mind and i feel trapped with that word now. I think he felt he had total control over me because we are "married". "The 2 become 1 bs he spouts..." Or the "oh! i know no matter what i say, your going to do what you want any way". That still gets a rise out of me.... What? I'm not "allowed" to be my own person? Are you kidding me? This statement could be about something as simple as watering the plants or going for a walk! Ugh. I have so much more i'd like to write but it's dinner time soon and i need to get things going. Oh yeah, i was reading about some dinner things in the anger postings, i know this won't fit in anywhere, but i just did something the other day that i am finding most helpful. I too have suffered endlessly with trying to figure out what to make for dinner and i made a huge list of dinners we have had in the past, of dinners the kids love, and dinners that i could make with more of an effort, in an attempt to help me with ideas. I put the list of about 30 ideas on front of the fridge a few days ago and my son just walked in to the house today, read it, and asked if we could have caesar salad with dinner tonight... How easy is that?! When i have no idea what to make or when i am asking for ideas, i'm going to read the list and pick something that i have made before or something i have made a thousand times before. Years ago I made a list of lunch foods when the kids were small because i was frustrated and i kept saying to myself "they dont like anything"... Then, i decided to make a list of all the things they would eat and when they were hungry, i would look at the list and read it off and they would pick something from the "sure thing" list. Amazingly, that list had about 18 things on it. Please excuse punctuation and run ons : )
DF's picture

That's why I have hope for you PJ

Your anger has the same source as my wife's, but your battle is different......

As for my wife's anger and resentment, for lack of a better word - MLC.  I'm not going to go into too much detail as this forum is about another topic not so related to ADD(HD).  I hate to keep hearing the "abandon" word when speaking of my wife because that's not true as I see it.  Things were pretty rough on us for a month or so, but she's home now under the same roof as me.  When you described your anger further up in the post it applies to her too, but she's not an adult right now.  It's risky for me to say that, but her behavior is not based on logic, but on wild emotions most common in adolecents.  What MLC does is change a person and make them complete opposite of what they are.  It's a fight between emotion ( what "feels" right ) and logic ( what "is" right ).  Emotion is winning during MLC and my lovely wife can't even focus on what has been good/great about our marriage.  I am the enemy.  I can say nothing to her that will change that.  I am the worst person in the world to her right now and I accept that with kindness and non-judging. 

I have ADD/anxiety ( no HD ) and I just found out after living with it for 37 1/2 years.  It wasn't the problem.  I don't treat my wife and family like others I hear described here.  I'm more athletic than guys 10 years younger than me and I proved that to myself just this summer.  I take care of myself, well I dress as though I'm going out for the day even if I'm working from home.  PJ I spoke so much of "fixing" me and I wasn't broken - I just didn't have the proper tools because I didn't know what the job was.

My wife has new friends that she spends time with that are nothing like the people she used to hang out with.  I don't know the specifics about family, but as I've been told by in-laws, she's difficult to talk too.  That's a huge suprise because she's always been so close to family for as long as I've known her.

Is she depressed?  Yes, to some extent.  I make good money, but we're financially strapped since everything has finally seemed to catch up to us.  She's stressed about finances and she hates her job.  She needs to make a change somewhere and I'm hoping she changes jobs before deciding on us.  It's too risky for me to discuss it with her, because I'm the enemy and inquiring about changing jobs is what I want - enter more anger.

Will she take meds?  No.  I never spoke of it and the thought never even crossed my mind, but she mentioned it to me when we had our talk a short time back.  She doesn't want to be medicated for the rest of her life.  Translation: " I'll be miserable with you forever and I don't want to be doped up just to be happy with you.  I'm unhappy." - This is emotion speaking, not logic.  I did not agree with her or offer any opinion.  Does she need meds?  Maybe for a short while in order to help her get past immediate issues in order to work on what really matters.  It's not unheard of for those in MLC, but she's running on emotions and her emotions are telling her I'm the source of her displeasure in life.

Is a year a long time?  You bet, but it's not over until she finds the strength she's looking for - in her and in me, we are a team.  It could very well be a few more years and perhaps a seperation on her part, but I'm the enemy and I'm going to be the last person on earth she will ever trust or believe in.  I wish I could do/say something to help her, but there's not much.  I have learned to listen and I'm getting good at it.  She sleeps in the living room so that I don't get "confused" about where I stand in her life.  Problem is she's the one that's confused about what it is I'm doing - I'm making no effort to fix her.  The woman I married is inside that teenager and I will ride her out because she is the woman I want to spend the rest of my life with - not the one sleeping in the living room.  I don't want that girl to love me because she is unhappy and sad and I am not. 

When we talked, my  wife showed flashes of logic and I saw her battle first hand.  She's unhappy and depressed and she resents me, but then she would say that my happiness concerns her and that I don't deserve her.  That she's sorry she hasn't been the wife I deserve because I'm such a good person.  You could say she was setting the table for me to make a move so she could justify being the victim in our marriage, but MY GUT TELLS she was speaking the truth.  My wife knows I'm worthy of someone special ( logic ), but she doesn't feel ( emotion ) like she is that person.

Your perception that I have shut down is only half right.  I've stopped pursuing someone that I keep pushing farther away.  MLC is nasty and I'm on the receiving end of the firing squad.  My patience, kindness and support are the greatest show of love I found that I can give her.  Time is on my side and I have the power of forgiveness and renewed confidence.  I'm the strongest, most masculine dude I know - except for that guy on the Brawny Paper Towel wrapper........ I agree he's pretty bad a$$.

Well, i just made another

Well, i just made another reply that has been answered here before i checked to see new posts... Sorry for that and for making redundant remarks. I would like to feel like i could help, but that isnt being a very good listener if you have ro repeat yourself over and over again. You seem so "there" but it is only natural for you to be there for her when she needs you, however she needs you at this point, for however long it takes. I totally get that now. Its the same as sherri and lulu, they were there no matter what. Loving them as they are, even though they see that they could be so much better of they only reached out for help on their own, or saw it on their own, or wanted to keep trying. I feel bad about the newest post. Please feel free to ignore the ground hog posting and let it go in the deleted posting mental file. There is no way to delete! im going to re-read again. Ive missed so much today. : (
DF's picture

My virtual smile....

Yep - Now your gettin' it.  Write or wrong it's my path and time will dictate its course.  My heart and mind are in line with each other for the first time in maybe ever.  From what I can read of Lu and Sherri, their hearts are still shouting over their mind and visa versa.  They will continue to allow themselves to be hurt until they can realign. 

I want to be very careful here.  I do not want to some across as "all knowing" because everyone is different in their own way.  It's okay to hurt sometimes because we're human.  I'm no robot and I do feel the familiar pain at times - I flippin' love my wife!  The difference is is that I can move past it in seconds.  Where I used to obsess, I now smile.  I feel really good and I think that's in part because I see the woman in the living room differently than I ever had before.  She needs me to man up and be there for her like I never have before and being weak and groveling is not being there for her.  Our kids are growing up on her, she's getting older, her hormones are out of whack, her old friends are gone and her new friends "appear" happy, but aren't.  Everywhere she goes to look for answers she's not getting them - I've been there.  She needs one constant in her life - me.  Even if she doesn't know it yet, it's me that she needs to remain steady so that I can be a lighthouse for her during her storm.  She's in rough waters and may choose not to brave coming to shore for a long time, but I have to keep my light burning for her - even if she turns back out to sea for a time.

What I want from you PJ and the others is to find your place.  That's why I'm here and that's why I came back to these forums after leaving.  It's so hard to explain where I am if you can't get out of the swamp of sorrow and/or anger.  You and the others I had grown close too need to ask yourself if you're a dandelion or tulip.  One thinks it's a flower and the other really is one. 

I love metephores!  Stay Happy PJ, I hear it in your voice this past 24 hours.  For you and your spouse!  You can't snuff out a fuse with fire.

ADD Wife ->  You there?  You disappeared soon after I left.  If you're lurking, come back.  I'm waiting to hear from you.

Ok so can I ask, sorry this

Ok so can I ask, sorry this is personal... (blush)? You and your wife live in the same house doing your own things. You take turns watching and being with kids. She sleeps on the couch and you elsewhere (blush blush !) so no intimacy. Do you guys maintain everything separately including finances (billing), food shopping, laundry, etc? You have occasional talks together. Do you ever go out somewhere together? Any longer than a few minute conversations? I am glad you are finding stability- i am getting kind of there. But yes, i will admit I love my husband and i want more!
DF's picture

Answers to questions....

In reading your questions I get the impression you are imagining a line down the middle of the house of sorts ( laugh ).  No.  There's not really a take turn mentality here, but it's not too far off.  My wife resents me so if she wants to take the kids somewhere and all we're doing at the moment is sitting around, then she goes with no questions from me.  I make my plans fluid and I can adjust for anything.  Maybe it's the laid back nature of ADD(HD) that I can do this, I don't know.  If there's something that she wants to do that might conflict, I speak of it before she leaves the house or she asks me in advance.  We're married and she's a wonderful woman and I will not deny her of her children, but I will also not allow my children to wallow around in sorrow that I just do not have so I do what I can when I'm with them.

Seperate finances - yes.  Always has been since day 1 when we met.  I almost never ask her for money and if I do, I can't recall the last time I asked for anything more than $10 bucks. 

Groceries/laundry - My wife hasn't abandoned her kids, but I've taken it upon myself to pick up more responsibilities over the past year.  My wife resents me, so if it has to do with me, like go to church, she'd rather not bother.  I would rather she continue to not bother until she does it because she "wants' to do it.  So I do most of the laundry.  I have taken over the expensive gas and electric bills that used to stress her out and I have little to no money left after each payday, so I have a $30.00 grocery budget each paycheck.  It will get better over time, but for now I'm able to get breakfast and dinner for the kids.  Form months I have lived off of PB&J sandwiches for lunch and oatmeal for breakfast.  It doesn't bother me in the slightest, it's just something that I do.  I can't afford burgers or anything very often and chicken has become a bit of a stretch at times, but tuna is a cheap alternative in many cases.  The kids are not complaining.  They are asking for things for dinner and it happens to be what I usually get at the store.  On that note, my wife gets many other things like things for me to pack in their lunches for school that I can't afford.  She doesn't always get stuff for "all" of us, but when she has $80 to spend on groceries it really helps me out. 

I try to stay on top of laundry and cleaning the bathroom.  The dishwasher stopped working 3 months ago, but since I clean up the kitchen everyday anyway, I don't mind washing dishes and putting them away.  I also get a sense of pride from this.  When I can, I will just replace the dishwasher since we hate it anyway, but that's for another day.  Besides - I'd still have to put the dishes away anyway right?

Another important note - If my wife didn't buy the kids clothing and shoes ($$$) as she has done since day 1, I would be forced to tell my kids that they can't play the sports that they want too because I can't pay for clothes and activities at the same time.  This is a huge help for me.

We're not poor, we've just mismanaged finances all our lives.  I'm doing rather well I hope in fixing my problem there.  Without going too deep and personal, I will say that I alone make over $70K a year and I'm not materialistic in any way so I'm not downtrodden, but the years of irresponsibility have finally caught up to me.  I used to survive rather well on half of that so being more responsible will allow me the comfort I would like to have - someday.

My wife and I do not go out - she resents me.  Do I want more from her?  Hell I deserve better from her, but I know that she can't give that to me right now.  My position may often come across as cold and impersonal, but that doesn't mean that I don't want what everyone else does.  I'm smiling much of the time I'm writing here.  I speak as I see it and I'm not ignoring reality or the facts.  I was lonely because I "needed" my wife to want me, but then I realized I was lonely because "I" didn't want me.  Lu, I got passed the idea that in my sorrow I was a person so deeply full of love, why wouldn't my spouse want me?  I know who I am and I know who I love, but my wife has to earn the full potential of my love.  Before, I threw it in her face, but now, now she can take my hand when she's ready and receive all I have to offer and more.  Nobody wants someone that needs them and MLC is an ugly monster just as ADD(HD) can be, but perhaps if you stop thinking of what it's doing "TO" you, you can see the gift it has offered you - a chance to fall in love with yourself again. 

These things take time.  I'm over a year into my battle, but life isn't over in a year.  I show my wife love by not abandoning her when she needs me most or being critical of her.  I've not surrendered my dignity, on the contrary, last night when I was replying to Sherri I learned something new.  I really have set a boundry.  And the boundry is that my wife will never hurt me again as I have hurt this past year.  In my minds eye, that is indeed powerful and with time I know that my wife will see that I am the man she wants to spend the rest of her life with.

No offense taken, I do like

No offense taken, I do like groundhog, and they are cute: ) Always appreciate the insight. It is motivating and inspiring. I was absorbed in thinking that your dh was softening, or maybe needing a kick to "see", and i was really wanting to see some type of forward motion in her because i see our (my and dh) situation similar. Not too sure if i am in mlc, but i know where i am and where i am is not near as close as what i was projecting. Sharp reality check put me back a couple steps. my space to breathe feels restricted. Need to change focus today and find a place to regroup and breathe. The recent actions here at home are way to fast and way to early for any of my comfort. I Just need space to "be" and he needs to grow in "his" space and not be so hyperfocused on me...

Hi DF, i was just reading and

Hi DF, i was just reading and there were a couple things that i didnt put in there right when i was talking "communication". i was referring to when you used to say you would shut down and not argue with her. (i think that is what you meant) And, if someone shuts down, that ultimately shuts the other person down so they dont get to speak or have their say or feel they have been heard or for that matter have their feeling justified, validated, or resolved. That is a lot of my frustration, only i dont go quietly. I learned a long time ago to get it out! Of course it fell on deaf ears but for the moment, he said he heard. Not that it change anything, because the same stuff happened over and over. The difference for me was being able to release it from My body so i wouldnt go crazy. Maybe this is how i lasted so long? Another thing i saw that is almost right is I was in counseling off and on for over ten years, we may have been together in couples counseling for about 1 of those years... We did see an adhd counselor for about a year together and my dh managed to get it turned on me. I was seriously thinking I was ready to bolt then, (7years ago) but i thought this guy could help. Plus, i was pregnant with our second child when if found this adhd guy. After i realized that he was more into fixing me instead of addressing DHs low self esteem and how dh projected all of his problems onto me, along with our lack of intimacy issues, i found another person for me. I saw this person to deal with some early childhood issues that i thought were the CAUSE of our problems. I took the hit again for him. I always took the hit because i felt so bad for his poor feelings and i felt i was compounding his problems of low self esteem and i felt i was constantly hurting him!! I thought to truly love someone i had to give in and "forgive" all the time, for everything. That is now replaced with much anger and resentment. I spent all this time looking at me, when he could have been taking a hard look at himself. I think now that i have said fix it, the hyper focus has turned on me and that is the exact OPPOSITE of what i want! He is walking on eggshells, he is trying to do everything now.... Ugh. I just want to be free to be me and him to be a grown up in charge of himself focused on himself until he gets it all under control! Oh, i found some mlc blogs about women for men.... : ( i kept reading exactly what your doing is what they all say to do. Man o man, you are in a tough spot.

As you know, I am the

As you know, I am the non-ADHD wife. I see SOOO much of myself in your post above...I had to comment.

First, communication does not have to involve two people speaking and responding to one another. Just because your husband would refuse to speak (shut down) does not mean that you had no voice in the marriage. "I don't go quietly" is a HUGE red flag. You should go quietly. You should make your point in a respectful way (I assume you're trying to make a point or express a feeling when you say you were trying to communicate?) and then go quietly. Loudly does not work with someone with ADHD. You were partially responsible for shutting him down. I know that seems harsh, but until WE..you and I..GET THAT then we are contributing the the breakdown in communication as much as they are. Unless he left the room running and screaming with his fingers in his ears, then you had time to express your feelings. Validation, resolution, and justification do not come easy..they come as slow as molasess in January. If you're expecting to sit down, have a conversation, get resolution and walk away in 3 minutes then you're not accepting your husband's limitations and differences because of his ADHD. You're just simply not. AT LEAST while you're stuck in the cycle of blame. Somewhere down the road he may feel more comfortable admitting he's wrong when he knows he's wrong, but for now that isn't happening. Hell, I have a horrible time admitting when I am wrong simply because the dynamics of our marriage are that I'm not usually rewarded for admitting I'm wrong with forgiveness and 'letting go'. If you sat down with him and said "I hate that you did _______ and I want it to stop" and he said "I am so sorry, I will never do it again. I hear you and I know it hurts you" would you believe him anyway? Probably not due to the past and how things continue to present themselves as issues. You have to learn to make your point and then let it go. Walk away. "it makes me feel_____ when you ______". what more needs to be said in most situations? there is no room for misunderstading, there isn't 15 mintues of ranting and raving that ends up burrying the entire point you wanted to make in the first place, his defenses go up, your frustration mounts, and nothing gets resolved. Eventually you have to have enough faith in him that you can just make a point, understand that he 'hears' you, accept that validation isn't immediately forthcoming, and just walk away and hope that it starts to sink in. This avoid shut downs and it avoids him feeling attacked and refusing to 'hear' you. I have said it before, and it is worth repeating. When I speak logically, clearly, and am short and to the point I see more progress and more acknowledgement of the issues from my husband than I EVER got with 6 years of bitching and yelling for 15-30 minutes and going days without speaking. Making your point and walking away feels like you're not getting resolution..I know, but if you're telling him in a respectful, calm way and you still see no progress or ownership of his behaviors then you have to make some tough decisions. You have to create an environment where he feels safe saying "I screwed up" and knows that if he screws up again you'll still love him and it won't be the end of the world. We all make mistakes...they may take a LOT longer to correct behaviors that are hurtful, but if you see him trying, then meet him 1/2 way.

As bitter as I am about the 2+ years we spent in counseling, paying $85 a week out of pocket for it, and all he did was manage to make me look like an angry nag, it did help me in the one way that I needed help the most and that was to identify my behaviors, my anger, my disrespectful treatment of my husband and how no matter what he did, I needed to change myself. I, too, 'did't go quietly'. I, too, insisted that he never heard me, I never felt validated, I never felt anything got resolved, and I felt 100% justified in hammering him into the ground with my words insisting he hear me and agree and cave to my demands (even though my demands were something he needed to do as my husband, my delivery left the point in the dust everytime..I lost him after 30 seconds). No one spends 10 years in these relationships and comes out completely blameless for the breakdown of things. Owning your own anger, your own mistakes, your own poor communication methods will help you gain some sympathy for your husband in ways you never knew possible. What always helped me was to put him in my shoes. For all of the things he did (I do not include cheating on me in this...that is a whole other level of wrong), he never talked to me the way I talked to him, he never berated me for screwing up, he never wanted things to be huge issues...but my own insecurities and my own fears made me react in very poor ways. I was justified in my anger and frustration...but I would never treat another human being the way I treated him over it.

You are free to be you...the only person stopping you is you...and that anger that you are holding onto for dear life. Truth of the matter is, you're blaming your husband for things that are NOT within his control. They are your choices. Thank you for this post...I know it wasn't your intent, but it has given me a look inside myself...and made me see where I have some work to do too. It is no secret I'm struggling to let go of my anger from the events of the past 6 months...this helped. (((HUGS)))

Hi Sherri, thanks for

Hi Sherri, thanks for responding, i am going to read it again to get clear, but i did want to reply/clarify one of my comments. "My" spouse never shut down, it was always the exact opposite. The belittling and talking down comments from him were always forth coming... That is where i would not go quietly, no one talks to me that way period. I was replying on a comment i made to df about his wife shutting down. Now on my behalf, i did all of the things to manage conversations with dh at nauseum. I read many, many great talking/managing books and was able to "manage" some conversations but ultimately the "defensive"," it's you", behavior showed up to destroy all rational efforts. There was no "fair" "lets take a step back or lets look at this together to see how we, he, or i felt". Which, really, is quite impossible when emotions are involved. In that sense i was shut down, but i did not go lightly when i felt belittled or attacked. I am at fault for many, many things, but i will not do all the work and have things stay the same. I have more relationship books, seen more couselors, and have more "what is my purpose" books than i can count. I did not just sit here and not try to figure out multiple ways to help my husband which, in turn, could have helped all of us. I have run out of options and run out of coping skills and have come to the conclusion that i need to STOP! It's not just me, it's him too. He needs to be a part of the solution. If he chooses NOT to be a part of the solution, then he loses out on what could be a great life. Your awesome! Thanks for your perspective. Keeps me on my toes. : )

Absolutely...he has to be

Absolutely...he has to be part of the solution when it comes to working on your marriage...but when it comes to working on YOU, he cannot help you just as you cannot help him.

I'm in your shoes...I've been the one to come here for support, knowledge, understanding, etc. I've been the one to do the co-dependency, anger, love languages, etc books. I've been the one to listen to sermon after sermon about surviving hardships, spiritual warfare, being a Godly wife, etc. We are also in the same shoes when it comes to trying to figure out ways to help our husbands. That in and of itself is a HUGE problem. We are broken ourselves, how in the hell can we go about helping another when we aren't even together and standing strong ourselves? The tools we are trying to provide are probably not as helpful as we'd like to think they are because we cannot provide the ONE thing that matters most...TRUE, 100% acceptance of the situation for what it is. THEM being responsible for them and us being responsible for us. As long as there is anger, there is not acceptance. As long as there isn't acceptance we are always going to somehow sabotage the progress. You haven't run out of coping skills, you're just using crappy coping skills like me. :) (and like THEM!)

I would also ask you this...why do you feel that responding to his belittling and talking down to of you is a must? When I see this happening (now..not for a very long time though) I remove myself from the situation and don't give him the chance anymore. Truth of the matter is, I am equally as guilty of this as he has been, so I cannot really hold this against him other than during a short period of time when he was taking ADHD meds and they made him very hostile and mean. I had let go of my anger and things were going so well between us. When he started the meds, he changed...SOOO much. It was devastating. I tried to be patient, I endured his comments and jabs and remarks...and then he finally pushed me as far as I could go (5 months into it) and he stopped taking them and crashed. That is when my anger returned. Rationally I know he was not 100% responsible..it was chemically enduced..but that is when he returned to blaming me for everything and I could not make myself walk away. I engaged. I gave it back to him just as bad as he gave it to me. I, just like you, was hell bent on not letting him blame me...BECAUSE I was unable to identify the ADHD as out of control and separate it from him. When you engage him in this kind of battle, when you react to his spewing of harsh words, you might as well engage in a battle with a wall. The less you engage in these kinds of things the more they lose their appeal and the less frequently you will see it (my experience anyway). If you can just let go of the NEED to 'not take that from anyone' and just walk away and take away his target.

 

Something else that I think has made a huge impact on my own personal peace (most days are getting better) is that I just stopped trying to fix everything and just took the entire issue off of the table. We rarely have conversations about ADHD or our marriage or anything like that. I tell him how I feel if it is something I just feel I have to communicate to him and then I try and just walk away (work in progress) and he can get mad and slam doors but that's OK. I said how I feel and I'm fine with no response..or even an angry response. Hey, at least I know he was listening. LOL YOU need to take a break from trying to fix him and just LIVE. Stop putting expectations or labels on everything and just LIVE. Stop focusing on what he's doing, what he's not doing, deal with issues as they arise (calmly, quickly, and without expectation or quick resolution), and just BREATHE for a bit.

You are just like me...your own worst enemy. It sucks.

 

DF's picture

Contrary to what I want to

Contrary to what I want to believe, when it comes to things that are personal, I struggle to speak about.  To compound this and make it frustrating, I'm a very deep individual and I enjoy sitting in deep thought.  I am extremely aware, more so now, in communication.  I'm no expert, but I know what I'm "trying" to do.  My wife is often tense around me and does not make eye contact so my response to that is to make my body language loose and un-conflicted.  I also look at her when I'm talking to her and smile, making sure not to look like a smarta$$.  When she initiates friendly talk with me, lately, I measure my voice and body to make certain I don't come across as eager or wanting - I don't want to scare the Groundhog into racing back into her burrow.  She is fragile to say the least so as much kindness, but not eagerness, that I can give her I do.

So what originally came across as somewhat cold, PJ, is not too far off from what Sherri is talking about:
"...Stop putting expectations or labels on everything and just LIVE. Stop focusing on what he's doing, what he's not doing,......"

These are words to 'survive' by.  This is the Sherri I know.  We all have moments of weakness, but it's how we address them when they arise.  I don't quit or check out or push the feelings away.  I'm not going to buy a weapon and just unload my frustration - that's not me.  It's tough right now in this moment for me to explain, but I remember way back in time......  In the 8th grade ( don't be critical now ), people used to give me money to go to the store to buy condoms.  They were embarrased and couldn't believe that I had no trouble buying them.  Sure I was shy about it, but I recall my attitude and that was - "what are you looking at?  I'm having sex.  What's your excuse?".  I'm not sure how it applies exactly, but I feel like that kid I once was.

PJ, Sherri, Lu - I'm not sure how to do this.  There's acceptance and there's responsibility.  I'm thinking back to what I told you before about the toolbox.  Diagnosis is a toolbox and the marriage is the job.  You and your spouse both have a toolbox now, but it's your responsibility to use the right tools for the job.  They are not the same for each of you, but they are there.  You will both find that you're using a hammer to saw through a piece of wood and that is going to frustrate you.  I keep thinking of ADD Wife when she spoke of how her and her spouse were not even working on the same project and didn't realize it until they started sharing. 

That's easier said than done so I don't know why I even bothered to mention it at all especially since it's not very fair that I can't practice what I preach here.  PJ, you read up on MLC and yes, I'm in a really tough spot.  I'm on the 'job' and my wife is on strike and won't come to the negotiation table.  I'm not unhappy about it because I'm writing a new novel.  There is no indecision on my part.  When this one is coming to an end I will put it down and I will start a new one, whatever that will be.

Sigh...

I totally know.... And here I am. Stuck and frozen. I did the help, i did the research, i did the look deep inside, i did my work, i did see, i did contibute, i was mean, i did fight back, i showed compassion, i then did not show compassion, i showed empowerment, I let go, i forgave, i forgot, i became hostile, i did soo many things (not in any particular order) and now i am stuck in mad. And i am sorry it shows. I am not working.... Hmmm, more to think about

Don't be so hard on yourself :)

This is way more complicated than "Working/Not-Working". I look at this as more of a "Trending" concept. I have started to feel like there are more good days than bad, so the "Trend" is looking good. I had a bad day the other day, but that was one day... In over 2 years post diagnosis there have been Low lows and High highs and the last few months have seemed to be more Centered, not the extremes fueled by the complexities involved in the ADDer/NonADDer dynamic. You  are still here looking for more insight so I would say you "Are Working".

YYZ

You are here...that is proof

You are here...that is proof you haven't given up. That speaks volumes. I have gone through the same wave of emotions as you. Initially I let go of my anger because I lost my Daddy (suddenly) and just didn't have it in me to be angry anymore. I had been told by our counselor I was angry, not accepting enough of him, treated him like a child, etc...but I never REALLY was aware of what I was doing until the anger just seeped from my pores as I simply tried to survive the few months following my Daddy's passing..finding out about my husband's affair less than a month later. So, now I'm almost 2 years past that grieving stage and angry again because he did 'it' again (his ADHD spun out of control, he withdrew, shut down, pushed me away, etc) and I am struggling to separate 'it' from 'him'. I am practicing to you what I need to preach as well. I KNOW it all...I KNOW my anger is bad for me. It IS getting better.

I spent 6 long years on the anger roller coaster and even when I let go of my anger and did things 'right' for many, many months things were still up and down with our marriage. It does not take away all of your issues, but it certainly made me happier with myself. I'm quicker to identify it this go around and want much more desperately to get past it too. I know I will. I know I am. I know I will benefit more than anyone else. Just hang in there...all of this is a natural, normal part of letting go...and just LIVING. When you get 'there', you'll see things so much more clearly than you do now. (((HUGS)))

I hope you don't feel I have been hard on you..I really don't mean to be. I could have written a lot of your words myself. This was meant to be. Your posts were meant to happen. My reaction (internally and what I wrote) were meant to happen. Good will come from this for us both. I feel it.
 

I will never feel bad about

I will never feel bad about anything said on here. I want to know. I really thought all my anger meant i was done. That i am right. That i have had enough and that it is now out of my hands because i refuse to do one more thing. And i now i am beginning to see it is one more thing to battle... it could be the beginning of a new chapter (df)... As much as i dont want to admit it to my angry self... My thoughts are progressing. Very confused because i have no idea what i need to think about, but thanks yyz, i guess i am still working... It's hard to not think about "the easy, perfect dream of what i always thought marriage would be" as opposed to this hard, i want perfection, nobody's perfect, constant uphill, battle. I would love to have lala land instead. Just makes me sad that there is no such thing. I was so mad two days ago and then wicked pissed last night and now I'm calm... Definitely all over the place. Peace and (((hugs)))

we are the same

I've said it before and I'll say it again. adults with adhd (like me) most of us have spent the majority of our lives being told there was something wrong with us. we have had people "deal" with us for so long that our pride is gone. were not dissabled.....were not stupid...we know what you are saying about us and we know what you think about us. but no matter how many times you tell us to take out the trash and tell us how YOU do it...we still wont be able to do it. and it spirals so far out of control...you think we act crazy? moody?  ask yourself how often you've had to "deal" with our problems and I guarentee I can match it with the times we've had to deal with you. my husband used to tell me all the time he thought I would dissagree with him on purpose. drove me crazy I was trying to have a normal conversation with him and he always thought I was arguing with him.  most of you on here tell yourselves its "inexcusable" to forget a birthday or overlook it. we have a hard time managing time but were not stupid. I used to walk all over my husband i could care less if he wanted to spend time with me cause I sure wasnt going to loose focus on my stuff just because he decided something was important. see the thing is....non adhd people make the rules. and you always "deal" with us and dont accept us and there IS no way to live up to that. I took up smoking, drinking,and turned to whoever wouldnt just "deal" with me to fix my problem. my husband told me over and over I was deliberatly sabotaging our marriage cause I didnt care enough to change. I looked him straight in the eye and told him "I am not sorry for the way I am." because for everytime you have to put up with us and our "hyper focus" we have to deal with you being eternally slow. ever wonder why do many meds dont work and if they do they dont work for long? WERE NOT BROKEN. when someone tells you from the time you were born that you are crazy...you WILL start to believe it. I have fought moods and confusion as long as I can remember. and it always centers around one battle....am I sane or am I crazy. I do NOT feel crazy or diffrent. but everyone around me says I am. I think it's normal and a blessing to be able to hold my focus and write a book. but my family is mad at me for not decorating the christmas tree together and I havent found my way into bed very often since I started the book. excuse me for pointing it out but what makes your christmas tree trimming and sex more important than my writing a book? do we miss EVERY birthday or is it possible were just human and sometimes we choose whats important to us. because I'm very sorry to say in eight years with my husband he didnt understand me and dealt with my hyper focus all the while his face said what he was thinking. he spent so much of his life trying to deal with reminding me to be like him that he never accepted me for me.

two years ago I called it quits, decided to embrace who I was and told him if he was willing to accept me as equal and not dissabled I would stay. it has been the happiest two years of our lives. I STINK at somethings. but so does he. a few days ago I asked him how he thought we were doing. he said "it's weird sometimes I think you've changed so much in the last two years you are completely diffrent. then I think about it and realise that for everything you do there is something that I do that is equal. I cant believe I pushed so hard for you to be on meds"

lives are full of frustrations and moods. dont for a minute think that we dont "deal" with you and how slow you are and stop trying to be adhd to keep up with us. you dont have to listen for 50 hours straight to make us happy. it's just darn possible that all our lives people treated us like we were stupid instead of letting us learn how to use our focus in the right way. .....and no we do not pay special attention to you sometimes because of our hyper focus....believe it or not...we love you. being myself allowed me to admire people who were slower. being accepted by my husband and having him put forth the effort to learn about me the way he was asking me to learn about him allowed me to stop being angry at him for always trying to make me like him.   it's not always the most romantic way to start the night but I need to know if you have needs before hand because I'm not stupid I know I need a shower and I want to be prepared for you to go slow for you...but understand this....no matter how great your need....no pill or anything else can just shut off my goals. and 99% of the time we are out to prove we can do something worth being proud of because no matter what we do...we will never be like you and we know how much that dissapoints you. I have no doubt after putting so much work into his work having it belittled for a birthday or other things is devastating for us. WE ARE SORRY. but we cant multi task like you. we envy you. we admire you. we try for you. but until we can have our ONE thing fully appreciated and not be made to feel sorry for everything else we missed...we will always resent you for telling us were not good enough the way we are. and last but not least, everything is about us but not on purpose. if we are forced to do it your way all the time our life is confusing. it takes endless thinking and talking to try to figure out everyday little things.  my husband would spend hours telling me how embaressed he was to take me into public. because I would  say things HE wouldnt say. I would talk about myself too much. you name it I did it wrong. not once did he stop to think how hard it was for me to even try knowing what people like you always do. the private looks to each other. somehow you always think we dont notice that your indicating were off topic or talk too much. funny thing my sister and father have adhd too and we always had the best conversations. uplifting, busy, friendly. it wasnt until my brothers or mother joined in and started pointing out all the flaws of our conversational abilities that we even noticed. they tried to get us to talk "normal" for years. till we said hey, WE DONT ENJOY TALKING YOUR WAY.  we get confused, we take things the wrong way and it causes us to focus on every word we say and we are auto pilot people. we cant talk straight when we slow down.  it's not that we want to excluse ourselves. but why do we have to switch everything to YOUR way. why when we put forth so much effort is it "it's about time" and nothing special. but you go to great lengths to tell us how much of a burden we are to you. ask my husband he will tell you the single greatest mistake he ever made was thinking for so long that he was above me...more normal... whenever the thought came up to leave it was because he was done "dealing" with me and he wanted a normal life with a normal girl. we have such a dynamic combo of our two views now I feel like I know the answer to the question we asked most often "why did we get married" because we were perfect for each other.

You make a lot of

You make a lot of generalizations...and for all you are 'asking' of us non's, you seem to be willing to give zilch in return. Acceptance is a two way street and it doesn't always just magically work out the way you say it has for you. I wish that forgetting a birthday was the worst thing my husband did. We cannot 'accept' every single ADHD thing thrown our way just because it is much easier for us to accept it than for someone with aDHD to acknowledge it and change it. I will never "accept" his running around all of the time and avoiding his family (inattention). It isn't who I married...there has to be a happy medium somewhere.

Your post is overflowing with criticisms of us "thinking badly" of our ADHDers and how wrong it is...and in the same paragraph you doing EXACTLY the same about the non's in your life. You don't get why they were upset about you not helping decorate the tree? Really? Where is YOUR acceptance of them? Do you care at all that it matters to them? Do they just accept accept accept or otherwise you're outta there? Why are you asking of others what you're not willing to give? Do you meet in the middle or do you just expect everything your way, 100% of the time.

Sorry you don't 'get it' that things like going to bed at the same time with our spouse is important to us...but that does not make us 'wrong' or 'unaccepting' that just means we have needs that aren't YOUR needs...but they are no less important than your need to write your book or opt out of decorating the tree with your family.

Love, compassion, kindness??

Driven......

You say your "perfect for each other", but in my opinion I see it as you steam rolling your husband, whom it appears would do anything for you.  You seem to feel you have to "deal" with us nons's and have a "my way or the highway"attitude.  Where is the love, compassion and kindness that every relationship needs to survive?  My DH may have his moments (and there are lots of them) but if I didn't see that he does truly care I wouldn't be here....I just don't see that in you.  Selfishness is not an endearing quality and a relationship is a two way street.  Of course your book is important to you, but you spending time with your family JUST as important to them. 

You comment that you started smoking and drinking to prove to your husband that you were happy with yourself....but were you really????  Why must you endanger your health to prove this point, in my opinion this is very manipulative.  Forcing your husband to change so that you will change your self destructive habits is just as wrong as someone expecting you to change to suit them.  Again just my opinion, but you seem to want to have your cake and eat it too. 

Before you lump all us non's together, get to know a few of us.  I have ALWAYS been my husbands biggest cheerleader and I have had his back (even when he was wrong) in everything he has wanted to do.  He is an intelligent, funny man with a heart of gold...he is also impulsive, demanding and has a temper with a hair trigger.  Before we knew about the ADHD we had more problems than ANYONE should have in the 5 years we have been together.  In the weeks since the diagnosis, both of us have reevaluated how we relate to each other and what we want.  What we want hasn't changed, how we are going about getting there has.  We are working together and both making the changes that are necessary.....one person having the power and one person giving in doesn't work....it has to be mutual!

Many versions of Both...

I have read about all the different "Personalities" that develop in people with ADD. There are, of course, many "Personalities" that develop in the NonADDer's because they have their own issues which shape the personality. We all, at times, post things that sound Black/White, 1/0, Off/On because we can be upset at the time of the post. Most of us ADDer's/NonADDer's do try to see that generalities are just that and each couple has it's special set of circumstances. It is good to hear about the differences as much as our common struggles.

I think we are all trying to find the balance to keep our marriages going.

YYZ

DF's picture

Be calm and keep it clean folks.....

Lets ease up a second.  Where I disagree on several things as ED, there's ALWAYS more to the story........

ED is responding to your anger and frustration as YOU see it, but she has a good point.  Much of OUR frustration, from both sides of the isle, is because our spouse is trying to make us see things their way and neither side does. 

It "sounds" like ED is running rough shot over her family, but I don't believe that's the whole story.  Remember - there's a reason I stand up for my wife and make grand efforts to not paint her in a negative picture.  I'm only giving you all my side of what I see.

Not spending time with the family to decorate something for the holiday doesn't mean that she was in the next room saying - "Nah I don't think so...".  I do disagree that non-ADD(HD) people are "slow" or normal, but we each have our quirks, but for me being not so active, doesn't mean I see may mind racing as faster than everyone else's.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I perceive what ED was trying to tell us is that in her own frustration she lashed out against her husband, but when she finally had enough and talked to her spouse, they both realized the efforts they were making were not the right ones.  If we're not talking to each other in a way that we both can hear, we'll continue down the path of frustration.  When ED says her spouse is seeing things from her perspective only, she's describing the fact that he perhaps realized he never thought of what it was like to be her.  They make a good team for a reason.  She has an idea of what his perception of things are, but now he's taken the time to see hers.  This is something many of us are guilty of.  I took my wife for granted, true, just as many people with ADD(HD) take their spouses for granted and it's not because we wanted too. 

It's not about being told we're different or crazy either.  I think that's a bit much, but I'm a bit mild on the ADD spectrum.  Lets give ED the benefit of the doubt.  She's not too happy about reading about what ADD(HD) people are doing wrong "all the time".  It's easy to forget that there are plenty of posts in this forum about spouses saying "I've had enough". 

Read between the lines of what ED is telling us.  nobody is to blame, so it did come off as attacking, but perhaps there's a difference of approach to our different situations that can be learned.  ADD(HD) isn't a free pass and it's not an excuse, but there is something to feeling like a failure all the time because we're constantly letting down the people that matter most to us.  I don't condone the tone of voice that ED used, but she's not alone in the anger forum that has expressed it so.  There can be just as much anger and hurt on both sides of the isle.  Just read between the lines - ED and her spouse are just now working together through understanding.  Maybe she didn't know how importantce the tree decorating thing was at the time to make an effort to make sure she was a part of it, but she does now.  Forgetting doesn't mean we don't love you, but it does mean we feel stupid when we're reminded in a way that, through body language, makes us feel stupid and that can be frustrating........

Extremely driven

I really appreciate your side, i have heard much of what you have said, and i have said myself, much of what you have said. I am glad that you have found a way to make it work for you. I dont put all adhd/add in one box. I can clearly see from this site that every single person is not the same. From what i read, perhaps your dh didnt understand and was very sensitive to your actions at home and around social gatherings in the beginning out of fear of being judged and perhaps lack of information. I, in my own situation, have from the beginning(dh diagnosed over 10 years ago), understood, bent over backwards, accepted and loved no matter what all of dh's adhd struggles. I, at my own demise, struggled, went to couseling to be a better wife, put myself at fault, and let everything go. "Not a big deal, its not his fault." I read many, many books on the brain and how it acts and reacts to stimulus, many relationship books, many self improvement books to try to bring my best to this marriage. I accepted him for better or for worse and allowed him all the space to do and be what he was. Now, who was there for me when he would lose it after a night of drinking? Who was there for me when he belittled me and talked down to me when i was trying to say something hurt or was painful? Who was there to help pick up the pieces when he crushed me with his words? Who was there when i was humiliated in front of my family, Again, for the hundreth time? Who was there for me and the kids when he was drinking and was saying the most horrific things to a child? Yes, i accept him, i have, all these years, and being in this marriage is proof of that. But, my patience and my acceptance turns to irritation and annoyance when he doesnt try after all these years. Im not looking for someone with Add/adhd to run circles around the house (because he always has and that has never been an issue). I was looking for a gentle giant, so to speak. Someone that could stop the hurtful, spiteful comments towards all of us. After acceptance and compassion for over 14 years, i have hit a wall. I have tried everything in me to adjust to him and to try to be happy, but i was abused my whole childhood and i dont want to subject myself or my children to it for the rest of my adulthood. I dont get mad at petty things. I dont care if things are lost or not done, it is the emotional toll of the impulsive hurtful things that come out at the most precious moment when i am trying to take care of my heart. It is broken and has been broken and battered and bruised. I am not blaming all add/adhd people. This is MY story. From my point of view. This is my heart and this is my soul searching quest. I am sure that my dh has his own hurt and awful story to tell too, i am not perfect, but at least i can say i tried and i did the resaerch and was in it to try be a partner.(counseling for over 10 years) If we are not BOTH on the same frequency then there is way to much static for either of side to hear. I get that. I have been there... Patiently Waiting. As far as my feelings are concerned, i have been stood up, and now i am this place that no one is thrilled about. I am genuinely happy that you have found something that works for you. Thanks for sharing.

Hi PJ

Its interesting about what you say about your childhood and how you have really worked with your husband all these years to help him.... We all have our Achilles heel from our childhoods, and it is interesting how many "non"- partners can talk about our own histories (me included) which sent us on our own little road of low self esteem, codependent encouraging behaviors. I would start there (and I have). Just like we can not change the behavior of our spouses- nor should we, it is their right and responsibility to do it themself- we must address our own demons ourselves. It took me a long time to recognize and accept my own value. I still struggle with it. So if that is true, how can we let others value ourselves as well. We should not have to be the all giving partners, expecting nothing in return! That defies the meaning of "partners" does it not? So while I keep thinking my DH has to find and conquer his demons, I realize that I have my own to slay as well. That, in itself, makes me feel stronger (at least for tonight!)...

I would challenge you to not

I would challenge you to not see "letting go of your anger" as ANOTHER thing, but as the ONLY thing right now. Yes, you have to live with and interact with your husband on a daily basis, but that does not mean that you have to fix, resolve, discuss, and rehash everything that is wrong everyday. Work on your anger first...it is, in my opinion, the most important thing. I KNOW, having lived through this before, that things were much easier to deal with when I let go of the anger. The entire marriage took on a whole new face.

Find sympathy for him and what he struggles with and goes through. Focus on the fact that you'll probably get better 'results' and more positive changes from him when you're not angry and he doesn't have to worry about dealing with/facing your anger. Focus on the fact that you want to treat him and give him EXACTLY what you want from him. Switch things...would you want him this angry at you? We all have faults and things we could improve on...would you want him constantly mad at you every time you slipped up? As I said before, it really helps me to put myself in his shoes. It does not change the fact that some of his behaviors are just flat out not something I'm willing to live with. But, until I am ready to walk away...and I'm not...I have to learn to find peace and give him what I'm asking from him. I cannot ask of him what I'm not willing to give myself. I have to remind myself of that 100 times a day, but it is the truth. Even when I'm not getting what I want/need from him, I still want to be giving what I should. Patience. Acceptance. Kindness. Understanding.

If being angry signified that you were 'done', I would have been done 6 months into my marriage. It has been 14 years. It has gone in phases...some periods of time were much better, others MISERABLE. You anger just signifies that you're reacting...but in a negative way. It's a manifestation of frustrations, fears, and disappointments.

IF(ANGER=DONE),YYZ IN (TROUBLE), YYZ IN (HAS CHANCE))

Sorry for my geek-ness :) I thought my DW was done because of the anger, but if that were true she would have kicked me out a long time ago.

So, PJ... You are working and I never read anything indicating marriage was anything but a lot of hard work, regardless of the two people both being "Normal", much less both having their own imperfections. I can be all over the place too, just see my posts. I have hope, I don't, I'm frustrated, I'm confused, I'm mad, I'm sad and so on, but I am still working on this :)

Keep up the good work!

YYZ

revised

first let me say I have this incredible nack for sounding like I'm angry....when I'm not? I had no anger inside that I was aware of when writing those words. but I know alot of people in have said it over and over so I'm sure it's not just you. I do appoligise for that.  I really dont understand how I sound angry? (tips are always welcome, I really dont see how I sound angry) I hadnt meant it that way and the one comment was right....reading between the lines I guess. thats what I meant...I lost it, didnt know what to do because while my non adhd was treating me like a freak and I needed to be like him...but I was doing the same thing to him. I wasnt trying to give any advice just saying that once I figured out that birthdays and christmas are to him just like some things are too me I realised just how unfair I was being to him (unknowingly) but once I figured that out I decided I loved him enough to do just about anything to make the field level. it was too late to trim the tree and I'm not sorry I finished the book. but now I have a gigantic calander and about a dozen ways to remind me and I make an enormous effort to make those very special days. just because I STILL dont see it as special to me....I havent the slightest problem doing it for him because I realised he wasnt making my stuff less important and it wasnt that he wasnt proud of me...he just...missed me. and wanted to be important too. he's very supportive now understanding my drive and not stopping when I'm on a roll it's very VERY difficult for me to keep my train of thought and as often as we dont follow through with things he knows its important for me to say "I did it" it's important for me to help with the income and not be distructive with my time. so he had helped me develop tons of ways such as speed talking into a microphone (much faster than typing a book) allowing me to come back and not loose my train of thought. and because I love him so much even though I'm not a fan of medicine I did not hesitate but ran to the doctor to see what my options were. I was not bashing non's but trying to say I now apreciate the diffrences and I'm not sure if I would have ever lived a full life if he hadnt been willing to see some things through my glasses and I plan to do my best to make sure I do everything I can to see through his as often as I can and when I cant (quite often) I just take a deep breath and trust (a new word for me ) that he wouldnt have asked if it wasnt important, he wouldnt be upset if I hadnt really hurt his feelings. the same way he still shakes his head and asks "how in the world can you not understand about birthdays and christmas trees". I cant explain why I dont understand it. but it DOES have importance now to me it's just maybe for a diffrent reason than most. not everyone is the same and everyone does the best they can I truly wish you a happy ending...all of you....I really didnt mean to come off so rude. I just meant that I kinda get it now and with both of us making the effort we've been so much happier the last couple years. we both make mistakes and fall into old habits and we come across alot of things that I dont understand (he's had more practice working with me than I have working with him) instead of talking for days trying to figure it out I actually come here and look for similar situations and frustrations that people had and I learn alot from you guys about the "other side" I'd be lost without and I appreciate your hard work. if theres one hard rule my husband has had to teach me though it's that I have possibly never had to deal with responsibility the way alot of people have. alot of times it takes him leaving me no option so that I cant get out of it. not everyone does things the same way but I was rather ashamed and I can easily see where it could have gone another way and I could have stayed with the drinking and such but lodgic prevailed....if I leave him and go this route...I'm taking adhd with me. some may not understand that it actually took something else not all this to turn me around...(it wasnt that I dont care, but that I didnt know what else to do)

it was my 5 year old daughter. I was thinking about all this and she was sitting on my lap and it occured to me she hasnt maintained the same spot for longer than three seconds. I panicked and started watching her with new eyes. she was the biggest sweet heart but was always in trouble. she would get in trouble with my husband and she would just cry and you could see...she really didnt understand what she did wrong. then I remembered how many times I'd heard people say "she's just like her mother that one" . I started interveening with my husband and asked him to treat her like he would me. now she goes weeks without getting into trouble and thanks to some brilliant ideas from dad she went from knowing nearly none of her abc's to being ready for kindergarten in just a few months. she still cant sit still but when I first saw it I realised is my behavior what I would want for my daughters life? who is going to teach her how to go through life and reach her potential?  I'm not diagnosing her but I think you would laugh if you saw her. I guess my whole post(S) were just mostly to say I admire you, I'm sure you've done everything within your power and while I wouldnt say give up OR get over it. I would hope my husband would have the strength (as devastating as it would be) to do the right thing for him and our two kids and not look back. adhd or not I am responsible for me. I have no right adhd or a non to cause anyone misery. I have no right to ask my husband to deal with it or get over it.  I fully accept that if he's willing to work with me we wont deal with each other but help each other. I'm not going to lie here, I manipulated like no other, lied, and though I couldnt seem to help it at the time it just sort of came out...I WAS responsible for the consequences.  I still have trouble but I catch it very quick now. sometimes I can actually interupt myself to tell on myself that I wasnt going to tell the truth. it's embaressing  to me but not enough to get me to stop doing it. the truth matters. not manipulating matters. it may not make a diffrence in my head but I've seen the affect it has on others.

let me just say for someone who writes...I cant spell nor can I put a comprehensive sentance or thought together. so I really am sorry for the way I sound....and for those of you asking yourselves how do you write books if you cant spell or get across a point? I write fantasy and I have a wonderful assistant who reminds me ever so often I cant take three pages to tell the reader about the main charachters hair :)

At first when i read it, i

At first when i read it, i thought you were a little excited, but then it made me think, alot. I know the stuff i write comes across as mean and cranky, but sometimes i am and sometimes im not. Made me think about my writing too. Dont worry about it. If we were all sittin together in a circle, we would have been able to see your facial expressions and would have been able to decipher it ourselves to see if you were really peeved. LOL We are all in ( or were in) a frustrating spot. I am just thankful for a place to "be".
DF's picture

I myself...

 tend to imagine what you all look like while I'm reading what you write.  I even have a picture in my head of what your spouses look like too - all the way down to whether or not you or they like to wear a hat.  If I can picture you, it seems I'm talking to you and I "see" your mood.  I can sometimes see people's mood in their writing too, such as how you went from pissed ( it was about you ) to confused/optimistic (about your spouse's behavior ) to happy ( you challenged yourself ) to today - compassion.  You're not thinking of yourself.....You're thinking about the rest of us and that includes your post earlier today.

 

All seeing

Very awesome how you observe and help others to see. Wish i could get my two fingers poking faster at the touch screen to give back encouraging, thoughtful, and thought provoking advice everyone shares. Need to learn more and need to keep reading. Thx for being so nice. Funny, i have a mental picture for everyone too. Right down to keyboards and computers. : )
DF's picture

Absolutley Wonderful -

 First of all, thank you for explaining the writing.  I'm on the mild side of the ADD(HD) spectrum ( no need to address my history here ) and I've always been interested in writing, but the mere thought of having to write 200+ pages has me running for the hills every time.  I can't even pretend to hold interest that long.....

Your tone is much softer I see.  Reading your explanation, I now see someone who wanted to be heard.  It wasn't your use of capitol letters so much as 'maybe' a hint of - this is the way it is and don't you say otherwise.  No worries though - you're fine.  I still consider myself new here since I only found out about my diagnosis back in April and stumbled upon this site.  There's a lot of anger, hurt, frustration and pain to go along with the success stories, but we all have one common bond - we want better through understanding.

It sounds as though you found your switch.  The one thing that will stop you in your tracks and give you pause enough to see the big picture.  Your relationship with your daughter.  I'm hopeful that my non-ADD(HD) spouse finds enough of that too in order to help her bridge the gap that's between us.  She's in a tough spot right now and as I figured, her mood towards me has at the end of the week here shifted to resentment.  I take it in stride.  I've not failed her or slipped off the wagon so-to-speak, but her battle is within her and is not because of me.  I learned about me in an effort to fix what I 'believed' she thought was wrong about me.  Problem is, how do you fix something that brought you too together in the first place - you don't.  I just forgot who that guy was, but I'm just fine now.

I'm very glad to hear that you are something of a success story.  It's not something common here in the Anger, Frustration & ADHD forum.  I myself am not hurt anymore nor am I  looking for support and understanding here these days.  I'm here to help, if I can, the people that have touched me during my identity crisis.  I do still learn some things, such as PJ and how she's able to convey her anger in such an articulate way.  I'm still looking for something I guess, but for now I'm content with helping through understanding.  We don't always see what we're saying until someone points out how it looks.  With that said, we say amazing things when they come from the heart.  One day, my wife will let me say them to her and appreciate it.

You spoke if owning up and taking responsibility.  I may be off a bit, but I'm wondering if your first post above was a result that you thought maybe people felt their ADD(HD) spouse should be more responsible for their actions.  I do agree, but what I see in Sherri, Lu and PJ and several others is that their spouse has not reached your place and the switch has not flipped for them.  My concern for them is that I would like to see them drop off the self-esteem train, or whatever train they're on, and get on board the train of unlimited possibilities.  There's nothing more awesome than someone who just get's themselves.  There's so much talk of confidence, but it's impossible to attain that when we feel so low.  I want to see the others find their switch.  Life really can be good once you're comfortable within your own skin and people notice - even the spouse who brought us all here together......

 

facinations

for as long as I can remember I have always been facinated by counselors. they can make such a diffrence in peoples lives. it was my dream to become one but alas after years of working on it I still have a hard time saying something and have people understand why I told them that. :) I dont guess I like to think were "fixed" or any such thing because the minute I forget to keep things in perspective thats the minute I slip into bad places. I am sorry if I took away from any of the other comments or the reason we are here. I have these times of extreme passion most especially when I see someone write something I recodnise that I was there. I think of it as excited to see common bonds and links between people. more often than not my husband thinks I'm upset or angry when I'm simply excited or passionate. frustrates me to no end :) it's been a long time I think since I was really angry.  anyways I didnt mean to just say oh I'm happily ever after with no sympathy for others with my excitement.

thank you for that thought! about my saying "this is the way it is" I get that alot to. I consider most things up to opinion or subject to change with new information but for some reason I come across as "this is the way it is" any help on the point would be awesome but not required I know this space is about anger. it is one things that still plagues our relationship more often than not and I'm all for getting rid of it because to be honest it's not at all what I mean and I can go nothing short of crazy trying to figure out how I'm saying that.

I do think we (add) should take more responsibility. but before a light switch flips I remember how many times I told myself there was nothing wrong. I was right he was wrong. he was pushing me to do what I did. it was all his fault. stop treating me like a freak when you (non) are just the same. you think your right and I'm wrong. I think your a freak :) (my husband) I do cringe when I think of how I trampled him. because in my case I really did trample him to get the life I wanted. and just because my light switch flipped so to speak does not mean my husband was on board right away. I had all but drove him into an early grave and we were going to get a divorce. it had already been years of trying and then I told him "I get it" and he just didnt want his heart to break all over again. not to mention he still believed I was acting the way I was out of sheer spite and there was no way I should have trouble doing ordinary things. he doesnt believe in things like adhd and doesnt like meds. no one in my family does. but one look at the beer can in my hand and the future I should expect my daughter to fall into I dared them all to stop me. I didnt know what to expect but amazingly within a week I was difffrent.  for instance, I like to build so I started a bedframe for my kids beds a long while back. one that had storage built in all around. I worked on a seemingly simple designed bedframe for 3 months it sat partly finished in our living space. one week after starting meds I finished that bedframe within two hours. then I started my daughters bedframe. then I built one for our queen size bed and then I finished the fence in the backyard. after 2 weeks straight of staying out of my husbands way while finishing projects he finally found me and said " I may not believe in it but I cant deny the diffrence" it took a long time to get to now but it could have been so diffrent and I cry for everyone who doesnt find their switch. my heart goes out to both parties of every story. life is never easy. as my mother loves to remind me just when I feel like life is unfair, "everyone has something whether it's adhd or cancer or they are just a pain in the butt. dont go thinkin your special". it's her way of reminding me to stay out of self pity and stay positive.

DF's picture

That's good stuff

I think that my switch for me was something along the lines of asking myself how much more I could take of my wife's behavior towards me.  It took about a week for me too and then it just kind of happened.  It's not about saying I'd travel to the ends of the earth for her and doing so, it's like the movie Forrest Gump where he ran for a few years coast to coast and then just stopped.  I've stopped running at or away from everything.  It just felt like it was time.

ED - you have great wisdom in that third paragraph.  A common theme in relationship books and counselors seems to focus on getting people to come together and see the other side.  That's easy except when both sides are agreeing they have an issue, but that's nothing compared to their spouses laundry list of issues.  I understand your spouse waiting and watching.  I fear any meds that mess with your mind and I will not take these for the rest of my life.  For now they are helping me with focus in school and work, but I miss my animated side that came out every now and then like a spazz.  It's like a childlike freedom of expression and it makes people laugh and eases tensions.  But I understand where your spouse was reluctant.  The journey back to each other is not easy because there are always signs that remind us of how we got there in the first place.  I used to imagine my wife coming back to me and I would tell her about all of the pain and suffering and how I was glad she's back.  I look at that now and I know that's not what I feel anymore.  What does it prove?  She knows she hurt me and I know I let her down in her expectations for our marriage.  I have no grief and I will not revisit my old anguish.  I've closed that book and shelved it.  If she comes back around and inquires about it, I may admit to things having been hard on me for a while, but I have no interest in opening that book again unless I feel she believes it's something she needs for her own personal growth.  Two weeks ago she told me she was sorry she wasn't the wife I deserved.  I figure - okay that's nice.  I didn't say this to her, but I know that was what she was feeling having unloaded pent up emotions for the first time in a long time - nothing more.  I know that it is not the end of her trip and she will not feel that way in a matter of days.  I will know when she's ready, just as your spouse saw it in you. 

PJ - you can imagine the computer and keyboard we're using?  You might want to get that checked out - sounds a bit over nutty to me, unless your picture of me is one of those dudes in the cologne ads.  Then I'd say you seem okay to me......  ;)

Df, Im Way off topic... W/ thx to ED

Like ED, i love to write and in order to do so i see pictures, like a movie clip. Im Ok on spelling, no so ok on structure and grammar... Please forgive my movie clip (pls dont hate me - hee hee hee) as it pertains to you all, i KNOW its NOT even close to each of you. This is what i picture: I see sherri sitting all nice and comfy with a lap top on a nice big fluffy couch, ,i see yyz sitting at a round table in the kitchen nook with visual to outside trees and forest, and i see lulu in her living room, at a little table facing the wall, watching the door-way as she writes and i picture df (you) off to the side of a living room, in an office, catty-corner to the door with visual to the front door - using a desk top computer.... As far as physical, nothing personal but i see blobs of blurry fuzzy shapes... : ) cologne guy, sorry, not so much. (laughing). I am not implying that anyone is a blob, please dont take offense... : ). .....................On another note, ED, i have been reading your posts on other topics and i have to say the way you have expressed yourself has given me a picture of complete chaos in an adhd brain. You explained it so well that i must read it again and again. None of the books i have read gave me a complete picture. Your description allowed me inside to actually see all the noise and all the confusion as well as your description of how there is a "disconnect" from what you "see and know" vs the " inability" to say exactly what you see and know...ALL WHILE knowing what is coming out of your mouth isnt close to what you want to say. This tiny blurb isnt giving your description justice! I also want to get the book that adhdmomof2 was talking about. My head is the constant evolving one where my dh is the fixed one... All very, very insightful. Thanks to both for sharing that insight. I never would have known any of this had you not responded to the earlier posts in this thread and it made me want to see where you were coming from. Very good stuff.
DF's picture

Darn...and I was so hoping

 Unfortunetly for YYZ we share many similarities so I imagine him in my home.  I live in a cottage home ( my first home ) and don't have a bunch of rooms.  I could afford bigger if I could just get rid of some of this dept...... . As for computer, to help you along, I 'm in IT so I have 3 laptops ( one belongs to work ) and I haven't used my desktop in over a year since my 11 yr old accidently downloaded a virus on it and wiped out the hard drive.  I was hoping I could score some bonus points on the cologne ads.  I'm athletic enough to pass, but I don't see myself wearing a speedo - ever.

While I see the purpose of the books and where they help, the research in kind of like a controlled experiment.  There's nothing wrong with that because the examples used are included in order to paint a picture for the reader in hopes that they can relate or better understand the research presented.  Here in the forums, there are people that will differ just enough that they may see the logic in a book, but not understand until they read some else's story here.  There is someone in these forums for everyone.

There is a lot of noise.  That noise kept me up at night for years, but I figured that's the way it is for everyone.  I also didn't think my anxiety over going to a swim pool was low self-esteem.  Odd as that may sound it's true.  When I met my wife I was in the gym 6 days a week, I ate right and had a very very low body fat count.  I still hated the idea of going to the pool and having to take my shirt off.  I kinda don't care anymore.  Don't know if it's the meds or my change of heart, but I see the bigger picture now and things like the pool are really no big deal.  I still have anxiety about sucking at me team sports or work, but it's not as bad as it used to me. 

The common thought that' I've found as it relates to having ADD(HD) is that the person who has it doesn't think a whole lot of it because we're fine.  We've had it all our lives and we've made it this far so what's the big deal?  You're just over reacting and when I tell you, you get angry with me for trying to prove you wrong.  Then when you say something that makes me think you're about to be critical of me, I get defensive and toss it back at you.  I don't have a problem!  I know today is Saturday and I know I have to get milk and eggs, but you didn't tell me to go to store 'A' and get them there or I would have remembered - at least I'm sure I would have, but I'm not going to tell you that I can't remember.  For me it was always feeling stupid.  I'm huge on respect and if I give it, I want it in return.  If I'm feeling like an idiot, I know I'm not and I'm going to get pissed off.

The important thing is that no matter how 'off' an ADD(HD) person may seem to you, we don't see it that way.  ED explained that when in a social setting with others that have it, we all get along just fine.  I see it the same way.  We can't pick each other out in a crowd like some radar and that's because we're not different from anyone else, we just act/react in another way.  I still find it odd that many of my co-workers knew about me and laughed at me for not knowing I had ADD.  But if I didn't know there was a problem I would never have guessed I was different from anyone else.  What do you mean by other people don't forget things all the time?  Life is happening daily so I'm bound to forget and that doesn't make me different.  My wife's journey helped me see.  I'm ready for her if she chooses to come back into the fold, but only time will tell if or when she will want too.  I hold no hope or desire for her to choose one decision or the other.  I got lots of time and I have a newer version of me to keep me company.

PJ - fight the urge to get pissed next time your spouse falls off the wagon.  You're dealing with a teenager discovering new thoughts and emotions.  Guide him gently back onto the wagon.  It's frustrating because he's an adult, but you will reap the rewards. 

Well, here we are

Well, here we are again...only this time I am fairly convinced that the meds have destroyed our marriage. He has been on them about 5 weeks..maybe 4. He is cold and uncaring and I honestly think he is ready to walk away from our marriage. He is taking 20mgs of Vyvanse...versus 40 the last time. It made him mean, but it seems as though he has no use for me at all. To say he avoids being home is an understatement. He is completely void of any concern or compassion. I am not really surprised, but I am sad. He said I could go to his psychiatrist appt with him and we would "see what the doctor says" about the meds...but I'm not sure there will be a marriage to save 3 weeks from now. I barely see him anymore. He's drinking again. He's missing work again, but when he does work it is 12-14 hour days. He said the other night that he does not come home because of me. It is VERY obvious that he feels I am 100% responsible for everything wrong in his life. It is almost unreal. I wouldn't believe it if I weren't living it. I thought about calling his shrink, but I am afraid in his current state of mind he would see that as trying to control him.

I am killing myself to try and understand him. To learn about and accept his ADHD differences. I have asked very little in return except that he show me the same respect and acceptance. Taking care of me...and praying he doesn't throw everything away.

 

Oh Sherri I am so sorry!!

What a sad update!!  I think that you have nothing to lose by calling his shrink.  Who cares if he sees it as controlling when you have legitimate concerns that your marriage will be over without this step?  I think ppl in this field are used to "emergency calls" and that it can only help the situation.

 

Wishing you the very best!!

So sorry Sherri! The alcohol

So sorry Sherri! The alcohol is not helping with the meds.... At all. It makes them MORE hostile. You deserve so much better and to be with someone that cares and respects you and the marriage enough to be there. I think you have seen the writing on the wall. Denial is safe though. Be good to you. Take care of you. let him fall to pieces and let him pick himself up. He will never, ever get it until he does it himself. It's almost like AA. They have to pick themselves up out of the gutter before they stop. I have had more than my share of seeing this and it's the only way to help them. By NOT helping them. They call it enabling them and it's just as destructive. They have to want to help themselves. I wouldnt want someone to stay with me just because he didnt want to be alone. I have to matter. I know you have the kids too. You've pretty much been a single parent, only now you wont have so many kids to worry about. I'm sorry. I'm scared for you, but i know you are going to do what you know in your heart is right for you. Call the doc, you have nothing to lose at this point.

Sherri, I agree- these drugs,

Sherri, I agree- these drugs, specifically Vyvanse, has the potential for this terrible side effect. I hate it. My husband has/had been experiencing and acting in a very synonymous way with one exception- he wont let me come with him to the dr (because I am too controlling?). He is 100% distrustful of me to the extent that he sleeps with his wallet (why?!), and hides his car keys (why?). Tread carefully because at his worst, he became very unrestrained and violent when "provoked". Acted in ways I never woukd have believed possible- remember I have know him for almost three decades. Dont go to your Dh at the end of the day when meds are wearing off, or when he seems "raging", at least during this period. To some extent, this has drastically improved I am happy to say- he is not violent like before but he maintains at his "worst, a flat affect in his personality. Our last marriage counselor noted this as well, though my DH ended up him hating hating him. I am maintaining as positive an outlook with him as possible, and try to bring his more positive side up but the best that seems to happen lately is an "ok" mood. I am worried about him- and dont know how this drug induced (imho) side effect along with the actual adhd, poor coping, mlc, and not to mention alcohol abuse is going to play out in the end. The good news is he still is a good man in that he cares about our kids (though he is often not there, kids love him), he will say he loves me sometimes in response to my words, and hug/responds to touch. But the verbal abuse is still there, especially when tired and overwhelmed. So all in all, improvement after a long battle- but not so much that he wont lose control and start cursing at me, threaten me (and then blame me for making him lose control). Every week is changing though, and patience, communication, and support for him -and support from friends and counseling for me (to continue my own development) is how I survive. He is struggling- I see it, and this stupid Vyvanse, I know, is not right for him in its current dosage, schedule. But I am not in a position to change that for him- he has to figure it out for himself, as well as how bad the alcohol abuse and all is bad for him. Keep strong sister, and take care of yourself and the kids right now. Only you can decide how long this can/should go on (we have talked about that before)... But in the meantime TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. Find peace and joy elsewhere but make it clear (calmly!) that you still maintain expectation of boundaries. Then leave him alone- yes very very hard and lonely. But a good cyber friend (YOU), suggested the same for me recently- and she was right. Nurture and love yourself. You can support him, act lovingly, try not to engage in the crazy train.

Thank you all...I am praying

Thank you all...I am praying for miracles for all of us.

I bit the bullet and made a counseling appt for myself. His work offers a program that includes 6 free visits. I know where I'm going wrong...and when I get myself to a healthier state, then I'll know more where I stand on the state of the marriage. (Unless he derails it and walks away himself in the meantime).

I am surviving. I am also going to start walking every day that I can. I can walk on a trail they have at my school during my 2 hour break on Tues & Thurs and on M, W, & F I have all day while the kids are in school. Hopefully this will help me mentally as anti-depressant meds are not an option (gain a LOT of weight on them) and feel I have been heading towards depression for at least 9-10 months. Going to try and treat my co-dependency with the counseling, start exercising, and basically take things one day at a time.

I hate the ADHD meds too. Between a rock and a hard place does not begin to describe where I am...the last time he stopped them he slapped the pavement face first and withdrew for months and by the Grace of God only didn't lose his job. But, taking them he seems completely heartless and needs NOTHING from me except sex...but is really getting his footing at work and accomplishing things. Yay.

I agree...and I have tried to tell him that the alcohol will make things a LOT worse. I think this is what happened to him Monday night when he drank...a LOT...and then couldn't function for 36 hours. I just don't get the frickin point of taking the meds if you're going to ingest something that does exactly the opposite of them!?

DF's picture

My Dear, Dear Sherri....

An email notification beeped my phone a few hours back and so here I come, crawling out of the woodwork.......

Sherri: "..He is cold and uncaring and I honestly think he is ready to walk away from our marriage..."

Sherri: "...it seems as though he has no use for me at all. To say he avoids being home is an understatement. He is completely void of any concern or compassion...."

Sherri: "...He said the other night that he does not come home because of me. It is VERY obvious that he feels I am 100% responsible for everything wrong in his life. It is almost unreal. I wouldn't believe it if I weren't living it...."

My Dear Sherri ->  Welcome to my world.  Replace [he] with [she] and you know exactly how my marriage is.  And I'm the one with ADD.  Go figure.

You're in a tight spot.  Is it the meds or how he "really" feels?  Honestly, it's not for you to say.  We can tell you how great you are and how much you matter to us and what you've helped us accomplish, but none of that matters when you're in the spot you're in.  When you have love and acceptance from the person you chose to spend your life with you're on top of the world, but without it it's easy to question what you've done wrong.  Chances are, not much.

In the last 3 weeks my wife has told me, on a few occasions how much she resents me.  That my 'easy going' attitude as of late is annoying the piss out of her.  That she never wanted to get married.  That she hates that she feels beneath me ( that's a salary issue ).  That she just wants to be friends, but can't stand being around me enough to even strike up small talk.  That she can't be happy married to me.  Everything I do ( even breathing probably ) fuels her anger towards me.  And these are just a few of the lovely things I brush off daily.

Know what? 

Doesn't bother me one bit.  Happiness is a choice and I choose to be happy.  It's not denial, it's taking a stance.  It's knowing your better than the poop getting thrown at you.  It's knowing that no matter what they say/do you know who you are and you will win.  There is hurt and frustration, but they come easy - it's happiness that come hard.  That's what makes being happy so difficult, but so worth trying to achieve.

We're hear for you.  Tell us what you need/want and any number of us can provide - you just have to see that.

Today I'm thankful I got to say hello - even on a bad day for you.

I was secretly hoping you

I was secretly hoping you would respond...Yay!!! :-)

Good question...maybe the meds are making him be more 'honest' is that what you think could be happening? Maybe giving him the courage to break free from me? He is just as codependent as I am, maybe even worse, but it seems the meds may have cured him of that? (or he's having another affair..he walked away fairly easily when he was the last time). So much to think about.

You (and I) ARE better than the poo being thrown our way...I am still at the point where I question if my reality is wrong and his is right (that I'm a horrible person for not being able to overlook/accept/forgive/suck up all of the poo my SD has thrown at me through the years like he can). I think this is a huge issue right now...and a big part of why he's so angry and trying to punish me.

I cannot tell you what I need/want...confusion is my middle name right now. Just seeing you pop in and seeing how strongly you have emerged from the rubble is really inspiring. Off to create a little happiness and peace for myself...spending the day alone doing nothing but mindless wandering through stores and window shopping. Might get my hair trimmed.

(((HUGS))) Sherri

DF's picture

I shall sumarize where I can...

Sherri -

Don't forget to check your local library for CoDependant No More and other resources.  Don't worry Melissa - I bought your ADHD Marriage book ;)  I help all I can as you have helped me.

My take on the drinking - I don't understand it, but perhaps I can offer an ADD perspective.  Before meds ( adderall ) I would drink because it helped me sleep at night.  Even before my marriage trouble, my mind was racing 10 miles a minute and it was often hard for me to fall asleep or even remain asleep.  Drinking provided me a way to relax my mind and just sleep -> hoping I didn't wake up in the middle of the night.  After meds, I rarely drink.  I have little taste for it.  I do love wine, but almost never have a glass.  The meds and alcohol have the uncomfortable effect of making me feel like my brain is in a vise grip and the squeezing sensation is uncomfortable and that's after half a beer.   Now that college football started back up - this is not much fun....grrrr.

As for you My Dear Sherri - I guess I wasn't clear about the "meds/clearly feels" question.  I meant that as an open ended question, one that you can't answer and never will.  So leave it be.  You will never ever ever ever ever find peace within yourself as long as you're trying to answer that question.  In my humble opinion, you've done enough already. 

Also - When you say he sent you a text to tell you he was working when he didn't come home.  Did you reply back or leave him alone to question his motives for bothering you at all with that information?  Texting is impersonal and you have no way of really knowing the tone of the message.  If someone sends you a text that they love you, you have no idea if it's dripping with sarcasm and this can cause grief at times. 

Sherri, letting go doesn't mean you're quitting your marriage, it means you accept that there's nothing you can do to help your spouse and it's high time you give yourself some love.  Constant displays of affection that get kicked back in your face is unhealthy.  Time for you to be a bit more selfish with your focus and love Sherri.  The kids will see this and the stress levels will ease up.  This I know from my own journey.  Maybe even try something you would never ever have done before.  I myself went to a ballroom dance class for one session.  There were 5 guys and 2 gals ( and I was the youngest - yes ).  Talk about anxiety!  I couldn't keep the smile off my face because I couldn't stop thinking about how asinine the whole event was.  I walked out of that place fully charged and empowered with the strength of 100 men and I don't care one bit that I still can't dance.  Basically, find another way to express yourself.  Writing is good, as we do here, but find another means to express yourself and find pride.  Take a camera, disposable or not, and create a photo collage.  Anything.  Just suprise yourself.

My wonderful wife goes out of her way to make sure I know how low on the totem pole of her life I reside.  She doesn't believe half of what she sees or hears from me, so why should I believe half of anything she sends back at me? -> That's your mantra of the day Sherri.  Get cracking on that homework assignment!

I can honestly tell you that when I say to myself that I love my wife, I smile because it feels good for once.  I can also tell you that when I tell myself my wife resents me, I laugh because I'm happy with who I am.

 

Got a hard copy of the book

Got a hard copy of the book today...mine all mine to high light and do with as I please. I am sure it will glow in the dark when I am done highlighting all of the great points about Codependency that pertain to me.

I texted him back when he texted me. To ignore him feels like a game to me. I want to talk to him. I want to hear from him. I reply because it is respectful and because I love him. And today he ignores me. See a pattern here? I think if I had said "need me to bring you some money by?" he would have responded but since I said "I miss you" the f*ck me.

I am letting go...and letting God...and I am not quitting my marriage. Acceptance, in my situation, comes with the harsh reality that he might be cheating again. I am struggling to come to accept THAT above all else because so help me God if he has cheated again I will file for divorce so quick his head will spin. I don't care if I have to crawl into the courthouse, sobbing and depressed, if that is why he is acting this way...it's over. I know I am supposed to let it go/let it slide/think nothing of it/not be upset but seeing the name/number of the woman he betrayed me with come up on our cell phone records (SD is calling her!! DAILY) just brought so many emotions back to the surface and a part of me cannot help but wonder if he didn't have something to do with it. Either he has been talking to the woman and suggested they connect OR she just reconnected with her out of the blue. ANYWAY..my point is..if I am to not give up on my marriage, then I have to somehow come to some type of peaceful resolution (internal) to stay here and keep 'trying' knowing that I don't trust him and that his promise to earn back my trust no matter what is now gone. He is ANGRY with me that old feelings came flooding back. He is ANGRY with me that his behaviors...and her rekindled friendship with SD...have set me back light years in the trust dept. Who treats another human being this way? I did nothing wrong..I have remained loyal and faithful to him 100%..he has NO IDEA how painful and torturous it is to live with this kind of betrayal...and reminders...and zero compassion for how I feel about it. So, there you have it....my big speed bump on the road to 'acceptance' is not knowing is he cheating? Is it just the meds? Am I just making a mountain out of a molehill? Does none of this matter because he has given up himself? Sitting here, right this very moment, I have no idea where things stand...and that scares the living sh!t out of me. At the same time, it really makes me angry because A) I care so much and B) because it is his intention to hurt me in this way and I am asking myself why I would want to be with someone who would do that to me?

 

 

 

The Unknown SUCKS...

I hate it that you are going through all of this and in spite of all the study, acceptance, patience, Obvious devotion, compassion, empathy, self-examination and 2X the Forgiveness I would get for cheating. You don't deserve any of this treatment. When my marriage was in this state of "I don't know if she wants to be married", I finally could not take it anymore and flat-out told her I felt like she was Pushing me to ask for the divorce. She was not, but was surprised that I started this dialog for sure. That may have been the "Tipping Point" for us. I know the situations are not the same, but the "Wondering" was driving me crazy. Trying to read between the lines of every comment or action.

He may not answer you, but what is there to lose? The intentional "Hurting" of someone you love is inexcusable. The meds don't control you, they only enhance what is at the core. It seems to make angry people more angry, it made me more aware that things were still easily about to fall apart. Dealing with enhanced awareness made me read too much into everything, but how could I ignore what I Do See? Scared, paranoid and anxiety ridden, just like before the diagnosis. The ADD is still me, the meds are tools which "Can" help and usually do help me. My "BIGGEST FEAR" was that my DW would never trust me again and if it were true, I would leave, because without trust there is no foundation.

I hope you get some answers Sherri :)

YYZ

I did..asked "where do we

I did..asked "where do we stand? What is going on? Are you leaving? Just let me know where we stand" NO.FUCKING.RESPONSE. I finally just called him. He answered the phone "I.T" (his dept) like he didn't know it was me calling. *sigh* I asked "why are you not responding to my texts?" "I was doing something, I was going to". Not. ACTS as if it is no big deal. If you do a google search for "hackers steal 250 certificates" .. that is the reason he claims he's working late/didn't come home last night. I understand nothing about it, so I have no idea if it's true or not. It's 10 p.m. and he still isn't home. I tried to go out with friends for the evening, but could only stay a couple of hours because he said he could not come home from work to watch the kids. My DD doesn't like to be here after dark alone. Oh well, the hour or so I had with them was AWESOME and I plan on doing a lot more of it. There truly is something uplifting about spending time with people who TRULY think you're worth something and enjoy your company. I just simply don't think my DH will ever feel that way about me again...and that's not OK with me. :(

Oh, he didn't address the 'what is going on with us' issue, just pretended as if life was fine...but I have a feeling it was passive aggressive behavior and just a way to get me off of the phone because lately he has gotten 1000 times worse about acting as if nothing is wrong and then his actions scream otherwise.

Thanks for your kind words. Sadly he takes my mistrust of him as nothing more than a thorn in his side...and just something else he doesn't feel is worth the investment of his time. I tried to tell him that I was getting there...that days would pass that I didn't even think about his affair...but our setbacks have hurt that and I am A HUMAN BEING I cannot help it.

DF's picture

sigh......

 I am speechless, yet I feel I should say something since you are online now..... and not much happy at all.

True, virtual friends are no match for flesh and blood people that can make your day.  Sherri, what makes you happy?  I don't know what i can do for you in your current state of anger so I will tell you a story about something that happened to me about an hour ago.

My 6yr old is having stomach issues today that's giving him runny #2.  He and my 11 yr old shower one after the other using their own bathroom.  Having just come home, my youngest ran upstairs to get to the bathroom.  Well, he didn't make it all the way after he got his pants down.  He screamed for me and I ran upstairs, quickly followed by my oldest son.  I came flying into the bathroom and did not see the warning on the floor........  I slipped on runny poo and fell backwards and got more poo on my elbow.  Needless to say I was cringing in pain and grossed out completely.  My oldest son saw what happened and laughed uncontrollably.  I was extremely frustrated until I thought.... I wonder if this is what they mean by being elbow deep in $hit.

Goodnight Sherri.  Be thankful you don't have to clean poo off the floor and off your body.  This is my gift to you.

LOL!!! I AM thankful!!! Ah

LOL!!! I AM thankful!!! Ah the little things that we can look back on and laugh about.

I called him and asked why he was ignoring my texts. I asked "how does it make you feel when I leave my phone laying all over the place and don't hear you calling or texting me? It makes you mad" and he conceded that it did. I told him "It may be the wrong thing to say, the wrong time to say it, but so be it..it really hurts my feelings to try and say 'hey, I miss you' ever now and then since I haven't seen you in almost 48 hours and you ignore me. I would never do that to you..not intentionally". He admitted to getting the texts, to not responding, but said it wasn't intentional. No sense in arguing, that is the best I'm going to get. I said "if you're mad, just tell me" "no, no, I'm not mad" He got defensive, said 'this' was the last thing he needed right now (with the hacking of the certificates situation) and I told him "I am not trying to make your life harder, I just want to understand why you're intentionally ignoring my text messages." I was calm and tried to explain in a non-accusatory way. He finally came around and tried to assure me he was just trying to avoid a huge fiasco like the previous time (see first few original posts...the stolen certificates was how his network became so infected) and that he wasn't doing anything wrong or that he shouldn't be doing.

ANYWAY...I was feeling better about the situation before I even called him...I know no matter what happens, it isn't the end of the world. I love him so much. I laid awake watching him sleep the other night and wondered where my dear, sweet husband was inside of that ADHD riddled brain of his and prayed I'd see him again someday. He's not a horrible person...I know we all say that, but he really isn't. I am going to work on myself because the more I learn about myself the more I realize that I am just a screwed up as he is. I need to be in a healthier place...like where YOU are...before I can know which end is up. Counseling next week...girlfriend time tonight...it's a start!! I have some pretty amazing girlfriends. :)

I hope your little guy feels better soon!! Sorry you slipped in poo. It is different when it's on the floor vs. when it is being flung at you metaphorically.

Oh, and I certainly didn't

Oh, and I certainly didn't mean not to give props to my ADHD website peeps. You guys got me through 1/2 of the day today...without panic or anxiety so overwhelming that I did something stupid. So I am just slowly adding to my support system, that's all.

Why drink? I think some of

Why drink? I think some of it is because it feels good. Apparently, Alcohol's first effect will be to cause dopamine release in the brain much like these meds do. Of. Of course chronic alcohol abuse can ultimately cause a derefulation of dopamine release, making things a whole lot worse. Dh drinks at the end of the day so i have wondered if this has a "booster effect" dor when the meds are wearing off. I dont know- was just speculating. So glad you are going to counseling! Sending big hugs your way!!

Makes no sense to me

Makes no sense to me either...my only theory is that he's not coping with life (job, marriage) as well as he would like to think he is...so he drinks to 'escape'. If he's needing to drink, the meds aren't doing their job. Wouldn't you think so? So many report not even craving booze after starting ADHD meds...so MAYBE, his dosage is too low? Hell, I don't know. I'm so tired of trying to figure it all out. He didn't come home at all last night...texted once or twice (finally) saying he was working. Isn't completely out of the question...but at this point I don't have the energy to worry about it. Fine. I'm here..I'm plugging along...I'm doing my best to remain true to him and our marriage. Praying a LOT. Waiting patiently for my counseling appt next Wed.

 

Drinking

People with ADHD drink for the usual reasons:

  • loosen up in difficult social situations
  • forget
  • feel better about themselves
  • to keep up with the crowd
  • they can lose themselves in the drink
  • it's a good excuse for bad behavior

They also drink for ADHD-specific reasons:

  • alcohol calms their mind (self-medication)
  • they have "bad brakes" and difficulty self-regulating
  • don't see the impact of their behavior on others clearly (part of a larger picture of this, not just the alcohol)
  • EF issues, specifically difficulty choosing to do something unpleasant today for a good payout in the future

You might be able to see where I'm going with this - his alcohol usage isn't YOUR issue - it's HIS issue insomuch as he's the one who can change it.  The ADHD-specific reasons are all part of "under-treatment" of ADHD.  If he still needs to calm his mind, for example, then he hasn't yet found an effective way to "scratch the itch of ADD" (as Ned puts it).

The other posters here are 100% correct when they say that you need to start loving yourself better, Sherri.  There are lots of folks here who think you have much to offer and deserve some self-love...Don't look to yourself to help him "fix" the ADHD, but DO decide how much of the drinking issues you are willing to tolerate.  Are you being empathetic (good, in my book) or run over (not so good)?  Are you placing responsibility for changing the drinking with him (good) or taking it on yourself (not so good)?  Are you doing something wonderful for yourself (very good) or only trying to do things to accomodate him (not so good)?

From my perspective, I have

From my perspective, I have only asked him "why" he was drinking again and suggested that if he was having a hard time, maybe his psychiatrist could help. Basically saying "please try something healthy to help you cope as opposed to something detrimental" and said it without anger or a "you're a bad person for drinking!" attitude. Honest to God, I just want the man to find some peace in his life and be able to live each day not chasing after the next 'self medication' option. I know he isn't coping. I know he isn't happy. I know that there is nothing I can do for him to help him except be "empathetic". I truly am...his happiness does matter to me...but there has to be a way to love him from a distance and protect myself at the same time.

I haven't seen him since I left for school yesterday a.m. He didn't come home...sent a few impersonal text messages letting me know he was working last night...and ignored one I sent him today. I have gone through a tidal wave of emotions all day. I am not ready to say I am done. I am, however, coming to the very harsh reality that what I have been thinking my marriage could be/should be/would be if only I just waited, tried harder, 'fixed' me, gave him space, manipulated him with my words and actions, played games, and all of the other stupid things we tell ourselves that we think will make a difference isn't ever going to be. Who he was when I married him, who he was before things started spiraling out of control in 2004, is gone. He's gone. Who he was the first 9-10 months after we reconciled in 2009 is gone. That wasn't my husband, that was ADHD hyper focus at its best. The cuddling, the talks, the spending time together, the bending over backwards to regain my trust, the person who wanted to protect my feelings, that wasn't my husband. That was ADHD hyper focus and it's over. Gone. Who he is today is what I am left with. Not the person he was yesterday...or a week ago...but today. He will not EVER be the person I met again. He will not EVER be the person who claimed to cherish our time together cuddling in bed again. He will not ever be the man who says "I am sorry I have hurt you and I will spend the rest of my life making it up to you" again. THAT man is lost out to sea in ADHD land. He's not ever going to be like YYZ, DF, George, and others here who find out they have ADHD and are so f**king glad to have an explanation that they devote their lives to never going back to THAT other way of living...because they love themselves and their families enough to accept their shitty past behaviors were beyond their control, but realize their future ones aren't. They GET IT. They see the pain and they not only CARE they ACT in ways that show they care. In all fairness, the girl he married...who laughed, loved, and gave with everything she had is gone too. She died because I chose to let her die. She died because she felt like if he wasn't behaving in a way that screamed his love to her that she wasn't worth the air she was breathing. This is so unhealthy and so suffocating.

Today I am married to a man who cannot even pay me the common courtesy of responding to a text message I send telling him I miss him. After 14 years of building a life together and all of the love I have shown him time and time and time again all I have to show for it is someone who has nothing to give me. Not even a simple phone call in the almost 36 hours he's been gone. I have spent far too much time in the past few weeks trying to figure out where I have gone wrong. No more. I deserve to be loved..to be shown love..to be made to feel loved. I deserve better. If he cannot give me that, 'better', then I am prepared to just let him go. I've begged him to keep the lines of communication open...and the harder I try, the more he avoids me. This is not a marriage, it is a game to him. Game over. I DESERVE BETTER.

 

DF's picture

Now you just have to believe it

Sorry, I'm bored at work today so I'm quick on the draw....

You've said it.  Now learn to believe it.  Your last paragraph has been my existence.  Unfortunately I don't think you've hit your rock bottom yet.  Once there, you will make a choice.  What you choose will be your path for some time.  I do fear for you Sherri, because you've not given, but sacrificed.  You've been jumping on the sword for a very long time and when you hit bottom it will be nasty if you can't see 10 feet from your face.

I hit rock bottom when I approached my in-laws in tears and told them I didn't believe I had the strength to keep going.  That was a very long 5 hour drive home.  In the shell of a car I was stuck with a man I never met before, someone who cried often over that long drive and questioned his own self worth.  I hadn't seen my wife in a week.  It would be another 24 hours after I got home that I would see her again.  It was then that she first told me "I love you, but I'm not in love with you."  That's when I noticed that person I drove home with the day before was gone.  My depression was almost a year long journey and I had one pivotal moment in time where I stopped looking and started seeing.  I saw how beautiful the trees look and how great it is not not be unemployed and have my health.  I saw how unhappy my wife is and I saw that it wasn't me that was broken anymore.  She is the one who can't see 10 feet in front of her.  If there was something I could do I would do it.  I believe in a way I am.

I finally saw my daemon and faced it and beat it.  Took me almost a full year.  My hurt now, comes from my sadness over my wife's lonely journey.  She believes me to be the enemy and diligently treats me as such.  For every 1 day she's civil to me, I get 6 days of I'm $hit.  I don't know who said it, but I like it:  "Love me when I least deserve it, for that is when I need it the most".  And therefore I do.

As for you Sherri, your trip will be yours.  You may fall into depression or you may wake up.  Either way, once you really start to see what's around you, you'll realize that you truly are selfless and your spouse can join you or stay where he's at.  He has his own daemon and you have yours.  Find yours and defeat it.  Perhaps that's the radient light your husband needs to see just how far he's sunk.

On a lighter note.  My b-day is next month.  I'm going to be 38 for a another year!  I could have swore I was 38 this whole last year and even said so in past posts here.  I did the math and realized I'm an idiot.  I'm 37 still!  Have a great day Sherri.  Think small miracles!  I just found a new one for me........ 

First off Sherri... I'm so sorry, Now on to the alcohol

"Alcohol's first effect will be to cause dopamine release in the brain much like these meds do" This makes so much sense as to how I drink these days... I never drank very much anyway, but after Adderall, in a social situation a drink sounds good, tastes good, so I have one or two then don't really want any more than that. Once I feel it "Un-Doing" me, I don't want anymore.

Thanks Lulu, this makes perfect sense to me.

Sherri... I'm so sorry you are struggling. I hope the median can be found for you soon. These 180º Versions of your spouse seem to be equal and opposite monsters...

YYZ

 

I know that I am in a much

I know that I am in a much more "depressive" state of mind the day after I drink than if I don't. Granted, my experience is far and few between as I don't drink much, but one of the reasons I don't like to drink is the depressed feeling I feel the next few days after I drink. I am, I suppose, relating this to what an ADHDer must feel like...and your experience of it "undoing" you pretty much confirms what I believe...that adding alcohol to the brain of someone who is already not coping well is just asking for a complete shutdown. My theory is, if he wants so badly to keep taking the meds (that are destroying our marriage/communication) then why in God's name would he do something that NEGATIVELY impacts the reason for taking the meds in the first place. Dopamine or not, if you have a brain that is already needing "speed" to make it feel 'normal', how in the world can adding alcohol do anything but HURT?

Question: If you took your meds late...say at noon instead of 7 a.m....would it keep you from being able to sleep that night?

For me...

Agreed on the alcohol... Before ADD diagnosis, I liked to drink (All the listed reasons), but as I got older I "Feared" to drink. Stupid behavior, bad feelings, Misunderstandings, felt bad the next day and I most of all feared addiction.

This is why I like regular, NOT XR, Adderall. Variable waking hours vary how much and when I take my Adderall. I just took my last dose (10mg) for the day 3pm CST. I will have No trouble going to sleep tonight, unless I get real busy on my Never-Ending Total Master Shower Re-Build. When I stop "Working" I need my un-wind time. I can't just get back from a hockey game at 11:00pm and go straight to bed, anymore than working on my shower until 11pm.

In the case of the XR stimulants, they are designed to work for "X" amount of hours, so I would expect if you take it at 5am and are ready to sleep at 10pm, then if you take it 3 or 4 hours later than normal you should expect to have a harder time getting to sleep at the normal time. I have been leaving the laptop off at night, mostly, during my shower project, because the pc delays my already delayed un-wind time and I've been a bit sleep deprived. 5 hours sleep is NOT a good way to start the day :-?

YYZ

DF's picture

Oh please no!

This is way off subject, but please tell me you don't play hockey too......

I'm already freaked out about how similar we are.  Next thing you're going to do is tell me you  play or have played lacrosse....

Although I sleep rather well after games since my body is usually whipped.

If I would have learned aboat hockey before...

1997 when I attended my first Dallas Stars game. I would love to play hockey, but I'd kill myself on skates before I ever took a shot on goal :) I was a Bass Trombone playing Band geek in high school and now a SQL writing, accounting system programmer analyst. I'm whipped after writing code all day, then walking the dogs :D

YYZ (Go STARS)

best resource on co-dependence

is Melody Beattie's Codependent No More:  How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself.  The last part of that may be particularly useful for you, Sherri.  Glad you're seeking support from a local counselor - hope they know about ADHD...

Have it...finally figured out

Have it...finally figured out how to get it from my daughter's iPad to my iPod and am going TODAY to get a hard copy. I LOVE this book and feel it will be the key in helping me beat this. I have to do this..for my own sanity. Thanks Melissa. I am praying they know about ADHD too. We have a counselor that knows about it, but our insurance won't cover her...and $50/appt is too much right now when I need to go weekly. Hopefully this will work out for me.

Strength

Who our spouses were when we met...who they are now. There is no defnitive switch is there? We all change and the ability to flounder or grow is up to each of us, individually. I can not and will not lay claim to moulding my husband to be anything than what he chooses to be. But of course, I want him to be a caring partner, someone willing to support me and make me feel special- as I would for him. If this can not happen becquse of who he feels he is now, or because the mind altering drugs are making it easier to detach... WHATEVER, then what to do? Will that happen? No clue and it is something I have so much invested in knowing. So in the meantime, I am trying to get stronger but Its hard when that same person who is feeling so negative keeps pointing out how little of value I am (during his "moments".). Funny, he can say supportive things at other times...just not as it relates to us. When will this circle End for real, and can it happen without a divorce? I still fight to maintain hope.

work obssession

My husband lives to work - not works to live. His total obssession. I guess I am supposed to be grateful that he is trying so hard to hold a job - which he has lost 3 now b/c of his ADHD and unrealistic life expectations.

I am so tired and alone. 4 kids - he took a job in another state b/c he wanted it - no health ins. - doesn't make enough for us to live - he works is 70 plus hours a week while there and still is "so behind" - never done with work - it is always a crisis - too busy to plan or organize - lives on Facebook when here on weekends - and then says "I Love You". It hurts more to hear that!

He wants us to move to this state with him in the spring - pull the kids out of the fabulous new school we switched two of them to this past fall and switched the third and oldest to one month ago b/c he was getting really bullied at the public school and actually started cutting himself. Yes, I have had to deal with all this alone. He tried so hard to lie/manipulate me into moving with him to this other state for this dream "ministry" job without health ins. that pays very little in a very expensive area - "God would provide". Now he says he wants to ask them for a 10K or more raise to keep him next year. Goofy. I don't think he has made a deadline yet since he has been there. He is a teacher - apparently the students and parents loved him - have been through all of this before....nothing new.

Why don't the makers of ADHD meds come up with something that lasts all day? Not just the work day? Even so, 2 meds in combo are not working enough for him - think he has dyslexia too. He won't look into that and won't do any type of course or counseling that focuses on the ADHD as the source of the problem - or some of the problems.

So, we get daddy after work when he is a vegetable, quite literally - who stays on Facebook or goes to the garage or does whatever elses he wants at any given time to feed his brain. The rest of us move on without him. Having him gone is a true relief - then I don't expect help from him nightly and then get disappointed again and again when he wanders away.

lonely in indiana.

Oh, that would be AMAZING! 

Oh, that would be AMAZING!  ADHD meds that work like his anti depressants....  My DH is also very much into his career.  Everything he comes across that's ADHD related (and he's interested in trying) he comments on how it will help him at work or how it will positively affect his career.  I asked him one day why he more interested in managing his ADHD for work life, but not for his home life.  His response was that work pays the mortgage and our relationship doesn't.  Ouch!  I mean, I understand work is very important and that bills need to be paid.  But, I want to feel important to him too.  Important enough to where he at least will consider the fact that ADHD doesn't affect just his career.

Well, at least he has a career!

Part of my husband's ADHD is that he doesn't work. Lost his job in May because of his ADHD, not even really looking. Seems content to live off my job, and won't even carry his share of household tasks.

ouch!

Sorry but this made me laugh.  That sounds like a classic "blurt" that my ADHD guy does all the time... since it's "true" it must be okay to say.  On another day he'd probably tell a total stranger (or even his boss!)  that his relationship was WAY more important than his job.  Also a true comment, and he'd see no contradiction between the two thoughts.    

Things have taken a very

Things have taken a very drastic turn for the worst...I am living with an angry, malicious monster..I don't even know who he is. All I am asking is prayers for me and my family...please add us to any prayers lists you might have at your church.  

Sorry to hear this

Take care of yourself Sherri :) You have worked too hard to be miserable. 

Absolutely have you and your

Absolutely have you and your family in our thoughts and prayers.  I am so sorry things are continuing to degrade when you have worked so very very hard to work things out with your husband.  You are a stronger woman than I am as I believe I'd have thrown in the towel long ago.

Sherri

I am so sorry to hear this news.  Please know that I wish you nothing but the best.

Prayers and hopes for a positive outcome......Please, please keep us posted <3