Why can he stop cold turkey when I get hurt?

This isn't really a conflict around household tasks, but I had no idea where to put it.  Now keep in mind both the events I am talking about were pre-diagnosis so neither of us really had any idea that he wasn't just being messy and disorganized and he just needed to 'try harder'.

1.  Cabinets left open--now I have read the other threads and realize this is ADD behavior, but again no idea back then.  When we were first married we had a postage stamp sized kitchen and our washer/dryer was in a hallway with cabinets over where they were set up.  These cabinets frustrated me the most when he would leave them open because the hallway was already small and near our back door so sometimes I would bump into them just coming inside or whatever.

We were still in the 'honeymoon phase' so I remember asking him several times to please shut the cabinet doors and getting a "Sure Babe, so sorry I forgot again".  It never caused any anger or anything.  It was just baffling then and I guess still today.  What would possess you to leave every cabinet door open?  He still has no idea.

Anyway, one day I was doing laundry and didn't notice around my load of laundry that he'd left the cabinet door open  and gouged my head fairly hard right on the corner of that cupboard.  It hurt, and it bled, and that time I got really firm with him about these cabinets in a "what the heck is wrong with you" kinda tone--was probably the first time (unfortunately not the last :( )  I can't remember if he was home when it happened or if he came in while my head was just stopping bleeding, but I remember dabbing my head with a towel while he apologized PROFUSELY.

But here is the odd part now that we know he has ADD--  HE NEVER EVER AGAIN LEFT THAT CABINET DOOR OPEN...which if the shock of having hurt me corrected all the leaving cabinets open behavior that would make more sense to me, but it was only that ONE SET OF CABINETS other cabinets not associated with hurting me......wide open.  And he still leaves them open.  It isn't a source of conflict anymore.  I just tell him that I know exactly what he cooked or did in the kitchen based on the cabinets and drawers still open when I walk in the kitchen lol

Then something similar happened again several years later.

2.  We'd been married 5 years at this point and he was driving me straight up a wall with walking in the front door and just walking out of his shoes.........RIGHT IN THE PATH anyone else would have to use to walk through our living room....or into our bedroom.  Right where various rooms would meet, there was often a pair of his shoes directly in the way.  Now this house was bigger and open floor plan, so there were plenty of other options for his shoes, but into the walkway they went.   And his excuse when I asked, nagged, yelled, etc was 'I am just going to walk back into them when I need to go outside' like that justified them being in the way.

And I KNOW other husbands do both of these things.  Husbands who as far as I know do not have ADD, so I am sure some of it is just gender or different mind sets or not noticing mess........whatever.

But I really really really wanted his shoes out of the walkways of the house, and no matter how I asked it didn't happen.  Then I broke my foot and it wasn't a bad break but there was a problem with its location and the specialist ideally wanted to put a pin in it, which I adamantly didn't want since we were travelling to Europe in 2 weeks.  The compromise was to keep all weight off of it for 2 weeks and if the next X-ray didn't show any running of the break, we wouldn't do surgery, but if it did, I had to have surgery 3 days before we left for our vacation trip-of-a-lifetime.  We were being beyond careful, but then one day I am making my way around on my crutche, and I TRIP over his darn shoes and fell down hard. 

I wasn't really hurt but it scared the crap out of both of us because of how important it was that this break not get any worse.  Europe in a boot was infinitely better than Europe just out of surgery.

I kid you not TO THIS DAY there has never been another pair of shoes left in a walkway.  I have set up more ADD friendly options for him today, but back them we were still 1-2 years pre diagnosis and still NEVER EVER AGAIN.  And honestly the little shoe rack I have inside the front door still isn't somewhere he regularly puts his shoes himself (though I put them there), he just walks in and takes them off and neatly moves them out of the way.

So here is my theory:  I read that there is a real problem in an ADD brain getting things out of short term memory and into long term memory, and maybe the shock/fear/guilt he felt when these things happened enabled that thought to be implanted deeply into his long term memory.  Because this is not hit or miss behavior like habits that he is working on --this is faithful every time never-screw-up-that--item again.  We don't have many of those in our quest for behavior tweaking, as I am sure a lot of the rest of you experience too.

These kinds of things......where sweeping change is possible......are part of what is so baffling about ADD to me.  I KNOW it can be done, but I sure don't know how to actually induce a change.  It seems to have a lot to do with how important an item is in his brain.......not how important he says it is because that doesn't really cause change to happen, but if something can prevail on him to change his thinking from 'this doesn't matter' to 'this is VERY important' it is like a switch flips and he gets it done.  Anyone else have any experience with this phenomenon?  I don't even think those are the only examples though they are the ones that came to mind when I was reading an ADD workbook the other day about long and short term memory.  I am sure there are other examples too.

One he hurt my feelings really badly about 3 years into our marriage & then made it worse when we realized he said it deliberately to be passive aggressive.  I'd said something to him that hurt his feelings, he didn't tell me a thing, but then 'got back at me' later even though I didn't realize I'd done anything.  I was so upset that I started crying (and I am not a big crier and it was probably the first time he'd made me cry).  He was shocked when he realized what he'd done & as we talked he realized he'd always had that tendency.  He thinks it was being small for his age and from a different culture, so he took a lot of teasing in 1 school he went to, so he felt to get back at ppl he had to be sneaky about it. 

But as soon as he realized it, I believe he pretty much stopped with all passive aggressive behavior cold turkey too.  He said he hated what he realized about his personality and he was embarrassed about it and that he WOULD change it.  I am not joking at all, maybe 1-2 other times in 7+ years we've been married have I even seen a glimmer of this personality trait which had to have been internalized at some point as it was the way he dealt with many things (most notably his parents and that is where it still comes in a little), but he just cut it out so quickly that I was amazed.  I have been working on perfectionism way longer than he has been working on anything, and my progress hasn't been that dramatic.

We tease that I need to allow whatever habit is irritating me the most to actually harm me in some way, and then and only then will it be irradicated.  But seriously, Do other ppl have these type of experiences and how does it track with ADD and the idea that we have to accept things because they just 'can't' change?  Because we definitely still are working our way through tweaking ADD behaviors....and I still have cabinets open all over my kitchen after he cooks but I just tell myself 'at least he cooks' and I walk around my kitchen closing the doors.  So even long after the conflict is over about a particular behavior, that doesn't seem to help it stop.

Ideas for what causes this?  Maybe how we could leverage it into other changes?  Or is it seriously just about the actual pain that he never wants to be part of causing?  He genuinely has one of the best hearts out there--probably better than mine though it embarrasses me to admit it!

Oops was just trying to edit

I guess it always helps to have a recent comment show up in that menu also. Make ppl realize this thread is here :)



Hi there,

I have ADHD... but I also have OCD... So I can understand your compulsive drive to have shoes put away in their places and cabinets closed and the irritation it brings to have a spouse that ignores those things or doesn't value them as I do...

With regards to your question about how things get transferred into the priority list- I will say that it sometimes takes a crisis for me to learn some messages... . For example- I was an alcoholic for about 8 years... and I could NOT quit... Then I hit rock bottom hard and realized that if I didn't quit drinking it would ruin my whole life... that it would cause me to literally die- either through an accident, or being attacked, or alcohol poisoning or that the shame of it would lead me to kill myself. No joke. I quit cold turkey. It wasn't easy- but I felt alarmed at what might happen if I ever drank again. And now, I have been sober 10 years. Now... that doesn't mean Is topped being addictive... I have had other issues over the years- with being addicted to food, exercise, dieting, marijuana, video games, reading, forums on the internet... etc...  These days it's bad reality TV. UGH. I am just an addictive person... but I have tried to eliminate the destructive ones... It's hard.

anyway- yeah- I got what you were saying... It definitely helps me categorize something as IMPORTANT if I had a crisis involving it...



Pbartender's picture


"Ideas for what causes this?  Maybe how we could leverage it into other changes?  Or is it seriously just about the actual pain that he never wants to be part of causing?"

Based on stories from forums like this I've realized that I don't have as much trouble in certain problem areas, as other ADHDers do.  I'd been doing a self-evaluation of sorts, to try to figure out why, and maybe see if I can apply that to my problem areas.  Here's what I've figured out so far...

  1. Make it Routine.  If I can turn something into a habit, I can get it done...  Bills get paid every Friday.  Saturday morning is for house cleaning.  Every morning I check the laundry and dishes and do a load of each, if the opportunity is there.
  2. Distraction Elimination.  I'm not exactly OCD, but I'm probably close.  I simply can't relax, if there's too many distractions or if things are "out of order".  Clutter, messiness and such are a big distraction for me.  I will hyperfocus (not on getting it perfectly clean, but on getting all of it clean enough) on getting the house clean just so I can relax enough to focus on some other job I want to get done.  Likewise, financial problems, for example, will continuously worry me, until I at least have a set plan for solving them.
  3. Make it a Hobby.  I like cooking.  I enjoy the ordered and stepped process of following the recipes, and the creative possibilities of elaborating and experimenting with a recipe.  It gives me a sense of pride, when people enjoy what I cook.  It gives me something to do, when I've got too much energy floating about.
  4. Urgency!  This is where your husband's phenomenon comes in...  I've found that I have a much better success rate starting and completing a project, if the project has a general sense of urgency.  That can come about from A) it being an emergency, B) having a deadline, C) having demonstrated emotional importance to someone important to me.

Perhaps that will help.



My ADHD spouse tends to

My ADHD spouse tends to operate better in urgent/emergency situations than one might expect from his responses and approaches to day-to-day issues.  When our daughter got arrested, he did quite well with talking to her and calming her.  But he didn't take the lead with any of the stuff that followed:  getting a lawyer; dealing with her school; and so on.  I really appreciated him being here when we got the initial phone call but after that, he wasn't much help at all.  It definitely is interesting.


"So here is my theory:  I read that there is a real problem in an ADD brain getting things out of short term memory and into long term memory, and maybe the shock/fear/guilt he felt when these things happened enabled that thought to be implanted deeply into his long term memory.  Because this is not hit or miss behavior like habits that he is working on --this is faithful every time never-screw-up-that--item again."

I totally agree with what you have assessed. Getting things into Long Term Memory is much of my memory problem. Strong emotional reaction on my part really seems to do this, like Shock / Fear / Guilt / Anger... Once I have something "Locked and loaded" in my System, there is almost zero chance of it happening again. Losing keys, running out of gas, verifying locked doors at night, losing wallet, setting alarm or over-sleeping, these things Never happen to me. (Well as close to Never as you can get ;)

I am sure your DH doing something that lead to your injury Crushed him inside. I know the feeling to well.

So does this mean that for my

So does this mean that for my ADHD spouse to get something into his brain, there has to be a crisis?  I feel as though I should be able to expect more from my partner than that he will only respond to, for example, our financial problems by going bankrupt or that he'll only respond to my stress and overwork-induced health problems if I end up in the hospital.  Is this any way to live?


There shouldn't "Have" to be a crisis, but a crisis can sear the issue into the ADD brain. Your DH Should try to respond to issues before they get to the crisis state, but I know how hard it was for me before I knew what I was dealing with. My awareness, post diagnosis, has sure improved these types of situations. I'm sorry, but I cannot remember if your DH was diagnosed and/or getting treatment???

You are right about this "reaction only upon blowing up in your face" strategy being no way to live. I hope things improve for you soon...

Hi, YYZ.  Thank you for the

Hi, YYZ.  Thank you for the compassionate response!  I appreciate it.  My husband has been taking medication for years, and he has been having meetings with a vocational rehabilitation counselor for a couple years.  He just started seeing a new therapist, at my urging.  I hope that the therapy will help, but I guess that I don't expect much.  It's my impression that my husband has never focused on the ADHD.

Ditto...as usual, YYZ :)

I wish I got paid for every time I second what you say ;), because THIS is EXACTLY it.  Aspen's husband clearly loves her, he isn't a jerk; he has ADHD. The crisis moved these experiences from "stupid thing that keeps happening for no rhyme or reason" to "Holy crap! THIS IS REALLY, REALLY, REALLY IMPORTANT!"  It's like the shot of cortisol/adrenaline bypasses working memory, I swear.  It's absolutely a physiological mechanism of some sort, because "trying harder," as Melissa suggests, DOES NOT WORK WITH ANY KIND OF PREDICTABLE CONSISTENCY.  Yet, in a crisis, this happens with ZERO EFFORT and GREAT AND LASTING RESULTS, provided the task is not too complex or dependent on too many factors.  Learning through crisis as a way of life, is a sucky way to live, though.  Most of the time, without other intervention, what goes to the front of the queue, and what keeps happening (and shouldn't) or keeps getting forgotten aren't necessarily in order of importance...It makes no sense.  Why can I remember birthdays of my 4th grade classmates (and with whom I wasn't even friends), but I can't remember things my husband says to me.  I KNOW WHICH IS MORE IMPORTANT TO ME, BUT MY BRAIN COULDN'T CARE LESS.  My husband marvels at my long-term memory and memory for random things. Our son is the same way.  Every now and again, he will ask our 7 year old ADHD to describe a sporting event play-by-play, which he can do with exquisite detail.  But then ask him what he had for breakfast or what you just said to him when the glazed-over look is present, and watch the fun begin...  My clone...


Have you purchased the Understand Your Brain book in full?  I know you were reading the excerpted portion online...  I continue to appreciate the benefits.  I am working on "Prospective Memory" now... My stress level is going down as I am seeing what is possible, but for the first time, this is not causing a temporary lapse of the self-imposed structure I need to function.

By the way, I leave cabinet doors open, but am much more aware of that now.  At the very least, I close them before I leave the room, if not in the moment...  Only have that problem in the kitchen.  Too much going on in there...;)

Cut from the same... Squirrel!!!

The Slap to the Face/Adrenaline does Lock the memory in place, for sure ;) And you mention learning through crisis SUCKS, it sure does... Always wondering when the next Baseball Bat to the Face is coming. My DW marvels at the details of things I remember, exact year a movie we are watching or song was released, but I could not tell you what she was wearing today even if I had lunch with her :( My beautiful daughters are my clones. They are brilliant and I hate the fact that they have ADD because of me. I try to spend a lot of time with them, because I love too, but also because I want to keep them up and not let things drag them into the ADD darkness. It seems to be working do far :) I try to be the dADD Coach ;)

I catch most of my cabinet doors and drawers these days and I NEVER put my shoes anywhere other than the bottom shelf in my small side of the closet :D

Addmomof2, about the book

Have you purchased the Understand Your Brain book in full?

No we haven't at this time.  There is a very helpful chapter online and we are basically seeing how he does with implementing the ideas from it before I suggest another ADD book purchase.  If it works for him, I am actually hoping HE will suggest the purchase.  He says he sometimes gets the feeling that I am trying to 'fix' him, so I am working hard at stepping back and making suggestions and just letting him decide what he wants to work on......I think of it as the type of tweaking we all need, but of course he doesn't because he feels like he needs all the 'tweaks' or to him 'fixes'.

I assure him I have many  many things that I am trying to tweak on my own, but they just aren't things that I need help to recognize because I have a better ability to self-analyze plus a very honest family who lives nearby :)

Any ideas how to help him not feel that he must be 'fixed' to be accepted?  I obviously accept him as is since we never even discussed breaking up and we've been married for almost 11 years and more than 1/2 of them involve undiagnosed ADD.  To the non ADD partner is sometimes seems as if the ADD mate really just wants to hear "You never have to change a thing about you because I will love you forever exactly as you are".  I have told him and told him that this is true for me, my love hasn't ever gone away, but naturally we both lived through the anger years.....for us at least it was basically only 1.5-2yrs but I guess he felt really unaccepted then, but then his ability to be a good husband (to me--because some of you ladies would have probably thought he was perfect at that point since he always worked and was never unsupportive exactly--just distracted all the time and unreliable) at those times was fairly unacceptable.

Not sure...

I have the book, which I purchased in Barnes and Noble.  It's great.

I don't know what to tell you about how to approach your husband.  It is true that the lack of self-awareness can be a hindrance to seeing ourselves as we really are, and obviously, self-awareness is the first step to change.  You so obviously love him, and he you...  That makes all the difference in the world, and is probably a reason he doesn't go crazy with your suggestions.  You really want to help him help himself, and you want to do it the right way.  That is so wonderful. When my husband was trying to understand what was going with us, when he was "all in" and I was not medicated and "all over the place,"  I LITERALLY COULD NOT SEE what he was talking about.  Since he has been talking divorce, I CAN SEE (with help from therapy and this site) what has been going on, my contributions to this, and even though I HATE his criticisms of me (I feel like I'm always one mistake from the doghouse), I can see it for what it is and start to look for solutions.  But not always.  Not always right away.  Not always without a bit of defensiveness.  I'm still better than I was, but the VISION can be cloudy at times.  I don't always see the whole picture like he does.  I just don't. 

Is it the fact you bring up his issues AT ALL, the way you do it, or both that he dislikes?  Have you asked him these questions?  Is there a way to approach him that he would find less threatening (not that I see anything wrong with what you're doing; everyone has a way they like to be approached)?  It may well be that you are doing everything right and that this is his issue.  That said, that makes it tough on you if you don't feel you can speak frankly when issues arise...

I wish I had a clearer answer than that, but that's all I have right now :(.

Yep, thats pretty much how

Yep, thats pretty much how things operate here too. Its terribly frustrating. Whether its my threatening divorce, or a child being seriously ill, or me having to scream at the top of my lungs to be heard. I swear this funny farm I live in has taken years and years off of my life.  My teenage son is begining to drive me insane too, just like his dad, and I worry so much what will his life be like, will he repeat this whole horrible circle. AT least he knows he has ADHD and never misses a dose except of course the one day i wasn't home and it was up to his dad to make sure he took it. So maybe at least he has a head start on this thing wrongly called ADD...i can think of many more better acronyms for it. 

So I guess the consensus is that this can't be leveraged?

That it just has to be a legitimate crisis to spark this kind of faultless remembering the behavior you want to change?  I guess that makes sense.  It is just because these were the most permanent changes he's ever made and he made them so instantly, that I hoped there was a way to reach that switch without being hurt :)

Rosered, I didn't get from what YYZ said that the only changes possible are with a crisis--YIKES would that be a terrible way to live, but that the only way to get something instantly and soo deeply into long term memory that it basically has to be an actual crisis situation (one that is a crisis in the AD/HD brain and not only in ours) and that this type of never-fail-to-remember-your-newly-changed-behavior is possible.

I did ask if there was any way to leverage this switch that my husband clearly has into other permanent changes, so I was just being told no :(  I suspected that answer, but it never hurts to ask if anyone else has the ability to switch it on and off themselves. 

Ok so I still need the answer to how to know when we are supporting a mate who just can't get over a hump to do something and when it feels like we are asking the blind to see and the paralyzed to walk.  My husband admitted to me that sometimes he can tell it is one and sometimes it does feel like the other, but when I asked for specifics I couldn't get anything other than he'd try to tell me in the moment when it was happening.

Pbartender's picture

"Activation Energy"...

In chemistry, there's a term called "activation energy", when talking about chemical reactions.  For most chemical reactions, you have to input a certain amount of energy before a threshold is passed and the reaction runs on it's own...  that's the activation energy.  Getting a match to burn by striking it is a good example.  Or, to look at it another way, it's like having to turn the key in the ignition of a car and cranking the starter motor to get the engine started.

For ADHDers, the "activation energy" of our long term memory is a lot higher than most other people's.  It doesn't necessarily have to be a crisis, but something extra has to happen to get past that initial roadblock.  I found a few ways that work for me personally that I listed above...  but they're probably different for different people.

To continue the car analogy...  It's like our memory's car battery is dead and won't hold a charge for long.  The starting motor of our working memory's ignition won't ever turn over enough to get the engine started, unless we get a jump start.



crisis,  so it seems the

crisis,  so it seems the crisis will get some people do get up and do XYZ.....but what about when the crisis is over ?  I have had several similar type crisis situations, the things I wanted done finally happens, but slowly starts to be forgotten a few months later and right back into the old habit.  The biggest issue my H had a heart attack and triple bypass surgery several years ago, hello big wake up call, he was the man i wanted to be married to for 6 months afterwards, he excercised, ate right, was happy, never lost his temper, took his meds religously, stopped drinking, it was the best 6 months of our marriage...slowly all that hard work started to slip and all that progress has long been forgotten.  I must say i am secretly hoping for another heart attack. WHY do you have to almost die to wake the Hell up ??  There are many similar Ah HA moments but that was the biggest.   Its so frustrating, He CAN do all the right things, its so hard to not think he is just being lazy, uncaring...


Thanks for sharing this

I don't have any good answers to your questions or anything really of value to add to this discussion. I just wanted to say thank you for posting this insight. My husband and I are both ADD. When I read your post yesterday, and some of the comments on here, I was fascinated. What you are talking about is something that never registered with me before, but makes perfect sense to me. So, last night I read it to my husband and we talked for a while about this concept. I am absolutely positive we (one or the other or both of us) must have had similar experiences, but from the inside of our combined ADD, neither of us could come up with a single example. Most, if not all, of our four kids are also ADD and I am grateful for this new understanding your sharing has given me on this. I am still processing it my head and am not sure what, if any, conclusions I might reach. But, having been shown this trait of ADD and having it instantly make perfect sense to both husband and I, I will certainly try to be more on the lookout for this happening in the future.

oh, the [email protected]%#&! cabinets!

A few weeks ago I saw a friend of mine from grad school. We caught up and I told him about being diagnosed with ADHD.  He said his wife is constantly telling him she thinks HE is ADHD.  I said, "Um... yeah... I think so too..."  So we continued our discussion and I enlightened him with the basic facts.  He listed all the things he does that make his wife nuts.  I'm nodding my head...  he says, "The open cabinets?  Is that like... a 'thing?'"  Yes.  Yes it is.

I can't tell you how many times, Aspen, that I have left a cabinet door open, only to smash my head on it seconds later.  Countless times.  The fact that I'm dabbing blood with a paper towel, and crying from the pain, STILL HAS NOT TRAINED ME TO CLOSE THE F*CKING CABINETS CONSISTANTLY.  Maybe doing it to myself doesn't work because my self esteem sucks so hard that i figure it doesn't matter if my head is cut open.

The sad thing?  My KIDS do the same thing to THEMSELVES with their TOY kitchen!!!!  I can hear the scream from the other room and I'll call out, "What happened honey?  did you smash your head on the cabinet again?"  and then I hear the miserable little, "yyyeeeaaah, Mommy...."  :-(

I wish I had answers for you.

F*ck - I wish I had answers for ME. 

Cuz, y'know what?  as irritating as it is to try to get someone else to change, it is EVEN MORE frustrating to try to make changes in yourself and feel like some gremlin has taken over and you have no control whatsoever.  '...but wait!  I closed that!" Nope... I only THOUGHT about doing it for a split second before **SQUIRREL!!!**

I washed 4 cell phones. Four. cell. phones.  Being completely out of touch with everyone/unreachable?  I'd say that's a crisis.  Did it prevent me from doing it THREE MORE TIMES? no.  However, I've set a record with my latest phone: coming up on nearly TWO years and I haven't washed it!  Nor have I dropped it in the toilet.  But that's a whole other post.  *sigh*

How many times have I cooked a roast only to discover I forgot to take the plastic thing off the bottom?  Four. What got me to stop?  I stopped making roast f*cking beef.  Really.


OMG _ Too funny when you read

OMG _ Too funny when you read about someone else doing this...yet is pisses me off when my H does these things. hmm why can i laugh at your post, but be furious when my H does the same stupid thing over and over ?  He must have 12 pairs of glasses because he loses them all the time, I eventually find them but only after he has replaced the 'lost' pair once again...and the cell phone, he now has two because he knows he will lose one and one is a backup, can't say how many times he has lost a phone either permanantly because he forgot he left it on the car bumper and then ran it over, or temporarily because he can't remember that he left it in a coat pocket.  Not being able to learn from mistakes is something he and one of my sons lack too.

Oh, yes... Totally hilarious...

...when it's NOT YOU!

My DOCTOR laughs when I tell him the $#!t that's going on with me.  Not subtlely - out LOUD.  I'll say, "hey! it's NOT FUNNY!" and he'll try to contain himself and say, "No... uh, no.. of course not... BAHAHAHAA!"

Garage Door...

I went out for my Power Dog Walk this morning and the garage door is up... I knew it was a mistake to tell DD#1 Not to close it when she brought in the last bag of groceries, I said "No... leave it up because I need to go back out and lock the car doors" Red Light, anyone? Needless to say, by the time we finished putting up the groceries at 8:30pm, Adderall fading away, did I remember to lock the car, close the garage door? Nope...

The ADD NEVER quits... No cabinets doors were open this morning, though ;) 

LOL.  I LOVE to hear my ADHD

LOL.  I LOVE to hear my ADHD friends joke about the things you do. Thank You.  It makes me laugh at the ridiculousness of it all, instead of being angry. My H will leave the garage open all night long too..I don't really care, other than animals deciding to use it to sleep in at night I don't see it as a big deal.  The dresser drawers/fridge/cabinets being left open drive me batty, because its too easy to walk into.  The other thing that he does that drive me nuts is he will walk in the house and lock the door behind him...we do not live in a high crime area, more likely a deer will walk in the house but i don't think they know how to turn door knobs so need to lock it...why it drives me nuts is that i will walk outside and he locks me out !  I was out in the front yard with the kids one day, he locks the door goes out and drives off, doesn't have his phone, so the kids and I were locked out for hours until he finally got home...I gave him hell for it and he hasn't done that in a while.

Lock Out!

I bet he felt TERRIBLE about that... See... The SmartPhone can make you smart. I NEVER leave without my iPhone, how else can I remember things? I've been conditioned (By being yelled at) for Not checking all the doors when I come to bed. We are not in a high crime area, but deer are are not the usual suspects in crime here ;)

Smartphones only make you

Smartphones only make you smart when you can remember where you put it :-)   yeah I'm sure I 'condition' him all the time too.

Your Icon always makes me smile, makes me think of the saying -  ' The beatings will continue until morale improves'...LOL  I think thats how alot of us operate.

BWC Policy ;)

Beating Will Continue...  Funny :D

I believe I have a little OCD mixed into my ADD which helps me not lose things like my keys, phone, wallet, glasses and such. These things Only go in basically 1 or 2 possible places. :)

I guess the "Conditioning" goes both ways between the ADDer and Non-ADDer, but that is why I love talking to people here who get it :)

I'm glad you like my icon, its from one of my favorite movies "The Princess Bride". Some Great lines in that movie :D

And here i was thinking

And here i was thinking Pirates of the Carribean...maybe thats because you have daughters, and I have sons :-)

Both have Pirates ;)

My DD's like both movies. I'm lucky I have daughters, if I had sons, they would want all of my toys ;)


Ha! I love it!! One of the all-time great movies. :0)

Your story is touching

I am glad to finally see that there is a spouse out there who cares that he is hurting you. Unfortunately, it has caused you physical pain, but honestly, I think most of us non-ADHD spouses would gladly take that pain in exchange for change. You also have quite a healthy outlook, with a good dose of humor, which also helps. 

Now, to answer your question, somewhat...I have this issue as well. My ADHD spouse does THE most annoying thing you can imagine. One:yes, he leaves his shoes directly in our walking path, and since we have a one bedroom apartment, it is not fun. Two, get this:when he comes home at the end of the day, he just peels clothes off as he walks in the door and tosses them on whatever surface he is near-couch, floor, you name it. Forget actually going in the bedroom or closet-too far. Then he just parks himself on the couch in his underwear with a beer and stares at the TV. No matter how I have begged and cajoled, this has remained the same for years. The only time, in fact, that the knee-deep collection of clothes on his side of the bed is picked up is when company comes over-and then he usually just shoves them under the bed. At this point, I'll take it! 

I do think that men are more inclined to this behavior, but then that's not true overall, obviously. Maybe I should stage a "tripping over the clothes" incident to see what would happen-lol!

clothes & shoes....

I am the ADD wife in my relationship.  Since i've been diagnosed and started treatment, I have been keeping the home WAY more organized, clean & tidy etc..... 

for the first decade with DH our place was always a mess:  dishes in the sink, clothes exploding from the dressers, papers piled high on every horizontal surface...  So we were both slobs, but DH claims that he was a slob because I was such a slob and that he just 'gave up.'

However, there is still the problem of his shoes, pants & socks thrown on the floor (and the occasional sweater) and papers all over the bed, couch, etc. I am thinking, cbrooks, that perhaps it has something to do with the couch?  What brand is yours?  There may be some chemical leaching out of the upholstery that triggers this behavior.


Cabinets left open

Cabinet left open and shoe I am guilty of. It has not been long since I known about ADHD. I know 5 year ago when I signed for stuff at work, I would end up with people pens. Like 6 to 10 a day. I broke that habit. So is it bad habit or learned. Is there others that have stop this kind of stuff and how? I am not on meds yet, But I know meds are not a fix all.


HILARIOUS! Thanks for a much-needed laugh, ellamenno :0)

PS Hey, maybe if it was cryptonite, it would actually REPEL the clothes as they hit...I should look into that...

Crisis overcomes "future blindness"

Several familiar points here. 

My ADD wife always puts her shoes inside the front door, which is right at the bottom of the stairs.  One day someone will come down the stairs carrying something, and trip over them.  Not only does she refuse to put them to the side, but if I move them to the side, they sometimes end up with something else on top of them – I am then the one who is the worst in the world for trying to destroy her shoes!

We don’t have problems with cabinets, our problem is the vacuum cleaner.  The first step in vacuuming the floor is to get the vacuum cleaner out and put in the middle of the room or passage way.  She then gets distracted so the vacuum cleaner sits there for a couple of weeks waiting to be used.

As for crises inducing response.  I few months ago I was skiing with my son (300 miles away).  I had a big fall and broke my back (luckily there was no nerve damage, so I will walk again one day).  I called her from the gurney in the medical centre before being loaded into the ambulance.  Once I got through to her that “no I can’t call back later” she was excellent.  Six hours later I arrived at the major city hospital and in she walked – having organised herself, her accommodation, someone to look after our daughter, and driven 200 miles!  I have never felt stronger love than when she walked into the ward.

I have heard that people with ADD have future blindness – they are unable to see the future consequences of their current actions.  Everything appealing is done right now and everything else is put off till later on.  When a situation arises that can’t be put off any longer, they show that they are more than capable.  In your case the shocking sight of your injury might have implanted in his mind, to overcome his blindness to the likely consequences of that particular action, even if he remains blind to the future consequences of all his other actions.