Here is an article from Additude magazine about coping techniques for wives with husbands that have ADHD. http://www.additudemag.com/adhd-web/article/658.html. I hope the link works. I follow their page on facebook and get really good articles for adults and kids. This article is pretty good except I'm not crazy about the first scenario-taking out the trash and the husband gets distracted and doesn't do it. They go on to say wives feel it's just easier to do those things themselves then to keep reminding etc. Which is true for me. They recommend saying things like "I really appreciate that you took out the trash". This is just me and I know I have my own issues, but I don't like this. I never get a thank you for doing any of the 1,000's of things I do everyday. I also try to teach my kids that some things you just have to do. And I praise them for a job well done but I don't thank them for doing something they should be doing. When I lived on my own, no one was there to thank me for doing the dishes or keeping the apartment clean. I did it for the internal satisfaction of having a clean living space. I went off an a little tangent. Sorry. The rest of the article is pretty good, except in my case, if I "checked in" with my husband during tasks he would not appreciate the help, he would yell at me. That's the issue, his anger. I like at the end when the wife says she has learned to just go places in separate cars since he is always running late. She feels better knowing that she won't be late.
wives with ADHD husbands
Submitted by MFrances on 06/15/2015.
I thanked my husband for
Submitted by PoisonIvy on
I thanked my husband for attending our daughter's college graduation. Then I told him that it is sad that I would feel the need to thank him for something like this. And I concluded by saying that although it was sad and weird to thank him, it also was appropriate, because I couldn't assume that he'd do this thing that any parent should do without a second thought.
What's Missing is the Commitment...(edited)
Submitted by kellyj on
While I agree with most of what the article was saying, it makes the assumption the the ADHD spouse is in the process of working on improving and committed to doing these things already. It also assumes (in context) that reminding the ADHD person to do these things is going to somehow make the mental jump in connecting that the benefit of the doubt needs to go on the side of their spouse in the first place. I think it's a little short sighted in making that assumption. I think something needs to happen in between just reminding the other person to have any lasting change and improvement.....it doesn't say this but that is the goal in the first place right?
I can see a big gap in the article right there, but it's not wrong in stating the real problem which is to break the current adversarial cycle in the first place. This is exactly what happened with my wife and I. Keep in mind....my wife and I went into our relationship together with me being fully diagnosed and on medication before we met and with me being totally up front about my ADHD and all the problems I have had in my past. Despite this...we still ran into some of the same issues and this is one of them.
What happens when you start "just doing things" for the ADHD person because it's "just easier" is this:
1. You're setting up a situation for guaranteed resentment right off the bat on both sides because you aren't allowing any room for improvement. You've just made a unilateral decision and this is a critical mistake because...
2. Fundamentally, you are giving up on the person assuming they won't or can't ever change and not giving them the chance. What you get from both sides is to take things personally and either get angry (externalizing)....or take it personally and feel hurt (internalizing). It's a lose/lose scenario with to room for change.
Instead (what my wife and I are currently doing and is working quite well)
1. A dedicated commitment (a verbal one with an agreement) from the ADHD person up front....straight up. Nothing ambiguous or room for interpretation.
2. Each specific area is spelled out in no uncertain terms: trash, laundry, cleaning, bills......what ever. Where both people decide together (ahead of time) When, How often, and How it is to be done. And then sit down and develop a plan where people both of you agree you can live with.
3. These things are put on a self monitoring list (posted somewhere) that can be added to and adjusted that both people can refer to and used as a reminder itself.
4. Tasks should be done first before other activities (for me, first thing in the morning before anything else works best) This way I never have to think about it again for the rest of the day. Things that I cannot do at this time I still scheduled later in the same day at the same time first thing in the morning.
*My wife and I have gotten in the habit of reviewing the daily plan together just before she leaves for work. I usually have my daily tasks done by this time (I'm up earlier than her almost everyday) and she leaves for work at the same time I start my work day as I work at home right now This allows her any input she wants to add to my plan and is also a good time for her to remind me of things I forgot about which......almost always happen:) I also try and schedule any shopping trips along with my work errands so I can do them at the same time and kill two birds with one stone. (we both do this) This way, everything is already done before she gets home from work since I usually work later than she does depending on what I am doing (an hour or so more ) She also likes to have down time after work to decompress so when I stop working, everything is done and we can spend time together on a daily basis. We normally don't do elaborate full meals on a daily basis and tend to eat different things (different diet) anyway which we prepare ourselves which does not require any major clean up afterwards.
Also...doing this on daily basis is a compromise between my wife's tendency for over planning (over controlling ) and my need to do things more in the moment or be spontaneous but it forces me to follow a plan even if it is not made until the day I'm doing these things. The other things on the list are already covered in advance so all the bases get covered this way. This usually only takes about 10 minutes at the most by doing this on a daily basis which is no big deal to either one of us. Break things down into smaller parts! win/win:)
5.. The ADHD person gets a chance to make changes accordingly to fit how they see themselves doing these things based on there own strengths and weakness's (the intangibles associated with ADHD and how we strategies and do things optimally) Put simply...the ADHD person gets to pick how many balls they think they can handle at one time but agreeing to add more as time goes on. ( adding more balls in the air without dropping them )
6. A grace period as far as time is built into certain things that are not time sensitive by allowing a range of performance error that is agreed to up front. Again...this is the starting place with the assumption that things will improve. This is critical. The tendency while in the process of learning is for the non to get impatient and give up before the ADHD person has the chance to convert these things to habit and permanent memory.
* It's a given biological fact that it takes a certain number of repeated tries and time to learn anything new. To really remember anything new whether you are reading information or doing a task......a minimum of 20 minutes of repetition is an established researched fact. Why...who know? It just is. That means....try-fail...try-fail....try-fail over and over for twenty minutes at least or you will lose most of anything you are trying to learn. This same thing gets extended in the bigger picture over time in the same way when learning to add new things into your daily, weekly, monthly habits. It's just how it works.
Another established fact as far as proficiency goes (trivia)...is that it takes approximately 20,000 hours of consistent uninterrupted time invested to become a Master at any kind of specific discipline or skill. Another one of those things that no one knows exactly the reason why but it's just a fact? (this is not what we are talking about here however.....loading the dish washer does not require this kind of skill to become a master at doing ;)
Another way to look at this is in manufacturing a product...In the automobile industry for example, the cost benefit symbol for built in defect is called I-bar, which is stated as a percentage. ( I with a bar or slash over it ). It is theoretically possible to make a car that would never break down for 500,000 miles but it would also cost a fortune. To make a car that is reasonably affordable and is still reliable enough to satisfy the consumer, they know up front that so many of them are going to have a certain amount of defective parts and issues up front down to a percentage number.....and to the point they even know that a few are going to be complete lemons in order to make them efficiently and cost effectively. That's what warranties are for. "I-bar" is the factored in percentage defect and they know exactly what that is before they even begin manufacturing them to the public.
7. Time sensitive things should be added later to the list after the other things have been relearned and have become habit before introducing these things to the list.
8.. There is no implied non-performance here!! It's especially important at first that tasks be carried out completely with as few non compliance's as possible (referring back to 6*) Everyone needs a few Mulligan's too especially at first within reason. Don't focus on the negatives and what is not being done...focus on the improvements and what is being done. This is where reminders can be really helpful once you see the improvements in the first place.
9. Performance reviews should be verbalized accordingly without making a big deal about it. A casual mention of improvements is very encouraging but should only be given if there are improvements noted. Backsliding should also be causally noted but done in the same way....more of a heads up than a criticism ie: FYI context.
*my wife and I usually do this first thing in the morning almost when we are discussing the days plan, and then don't discuss these things again in the dame day. Also....this is not a task by task review and are not discussed everyday. Weekly or bi-weekly is good for me ( Avoid nitpicking at all costs and focus on overall performance as much as possible)
10 Letting go of past resentment and anger during this process is important to work on if there is any hope for this to work. One of the outstanding qualities that my wife has, is not holding onto things and carrying a grudge. I'm the same way in the very short term. 24 hours is usually all either of us needs to get over ourselves so within that 24 hr period it's best not to talk about things as a rule and wait until the next day. (It's not reasonable on either side to think that old anger patterns will completely disappear over night. Best to let these go completely but give credit where credit is due.
*stating the obvious but possibly not so obvious at times when you are irritated : common courtesy, politeness and manners should be mandatory at all time. Please and Thank You are not an option and should be observed on a daily basis at all times. I've found that these simple courtesies carry and enormous amount of weight and are so frick'in easy and simply there is no excuse not to use them no matter what....at all times....everyday. If you didn't learn this or were taught these things as a child, now is a good time to learn them. Despite my sarcasm and my smart ass potty mouth.....I always balance this with common courtesy. I give my mother and myself credit here as this has always been the case with me and is not something new that I had to learn to do. It may be my passive aggressive way of getting away with the other things I just mentioned but none the less....it is how I communicate to people in general all the time everywhere I go. It's a habit. lol Just say'in :)
The non should try not to react (first) to failures from the past and fall back into a pattern of resentment or anger for smaller infractions and over-sites and even annoying quirks surrounding these things. As long as there is steady progress over time in improvement, don't sweat the small stuff (again 6*) learn to let some of the smaller irritants go for good.
Remember the Princess and the Pea? Letting the small pebble in your hiking boots ruin your entire day is not worth it on all accounts including everyone else in your party who has to hear about it during the entire trip that is...... if that is really the wild hair that's up your butt in the first place. This is also a learned skill in the same way as what we have to do applying everything I just said. I see this as equally important and as much the nons responsibility to this process as ours is to relearn to do things differently.
Sorry for the long response but this is exactly what my wife and I just went through and came up with together that is actually working....for what it's worth;)
Wow! That is really helpful.
Submitted by MFrances on
Wow! That is really helpful. I like your list and how you and your wife review it every morning. I have to remember though that these articles are from the stand point of someone that is in treatment and committed to improving, like you said. That is not my situation. I love the list, I would love to divide up what needs done because I feel I do so much (and I agree with what you said about what happens when you do things for the person because "it's easier"). Like with the trash, if it's full I shouldn't even have to say can you take out the trash, he sees it's full-take it out. I know that is probably expecting too much from his ADHD brain or is it laziness, or is it passive-aggressiveness on his part. Hard to say. If we had that list, he would not refer to it. He did use a notebook and a white board (all tips he read in a book) but the thing is you have to look at the list and the white board every day. And you have to work at it becoming a habit. That takes time and consistency which didn't happen. I don't think he is to the point of seeing what is wrong and wanting to change. I feel he is still blaming me for a lot (you know-it's always someone else's fault). I've tried to remind him and help keep him on schedule when working on a big project (and I really did speak to him nicely and gently) and all that got me is yelled at and him disagreeing with me. At times I feel he is very oppositional-anything I say he automatically disagrees with or doesn't believe. Sometimes I think he does it on purpose so we fight and he gets that adrenaline rush from fighting.
That's the Crux of All Crux's Right There
Submitted by kellyj on
Getting him/(Us) to make that mental jump in connecting that we are not like everyone else as much as we don't want to see the bad parts. We see the good parts because those are easy. People tell you those too even if (anyone including us) knows about the ADHD.
Speaking for myself here...it's not even oppositional or being stubborn that we can't see it. It's not like you have someone with a video camera following you around all the time so you can see what other people see plus, the whole time keeping issue and living more in the moment. What we're missing is CONTEXT!! ouch. I hate to say it but it's true but that is one of those things that we can't really do anything about or change. The reason I do my chores first thing in the morning isn't because it's the most convenient time for me to do them because it's not. I hate doing them at that time in truth but I know myself better than that. The reason I do them is really so I don't have to try and remember to do them later. It's not even procrastination or being lazy. I know when I procrastinate or when I'm slacking for the most part...... or a least I'm mostly aware of things I procrastinate doing. But I know myself well enough that if I miss my window with things I just won't do them later. I have tried every way imaginable to circumvent this and nothing I've found really works no matter how hard I try in the long run. This is the only way it works for me period. I only have one choice and this is it.
The passive aggression only comes into play for me when someone starts squaring off with me or starts to get pissy. I am soooooo passive aggressive at that point it takes everything I've got to push my way through that and let it go. I have become so aware of this that it is now something that I force myself to go against every time I get that "hit" which tells me now to do something different. Anything!..but what it's telling me to do. I recognize that "hit" every time now and it's still difficult to override. That's the learning curve I was talking about ( for you guys too..our spouse with resentment and irritation or anger). I know it can be done because I can't imagine anyone being more stubborn that I am when someone starts squaring off with me. hooo boy! It's the little voice inside me that always starts every sentence with "Really?" and then goes from there! lol But that doesn't happen unless I read that from other people first but my radar is really tuned for this. I may be oblivious to many other cues from people not when I feel like they are messing with me. I never miss that one! lol So the passive aggression is always in response to other people and what I said before is just part of the ADHD. I can clearly see these things very distinctly from one another. It's not even anger or being competitive either and I don't hold onto that at all. It's not about winning or even feeling disrespected...it's only about the other person stopping and approaching me differently. It's always in the moment and it is gone just as fast as long as the other person steps down...but if they don't or won't I have just have to live with that feeling because and just get over it anyway. I guess you would say...it's just a feeling wanting to be equal not special, entitled or superior (or thinking that I am). That would be more of an inferiority insecure overcompensating kind of thing which for me it is not that at all. I just want to be treated equally and treat others the same...as equals.
It's really easy for me to make that distinction now. I know this from being on the other side of people who are coming from that overcompensating, over confident but insecure side like I was just saying. More of the need for one-up-man ship, the need to be first, the "how dare you" question me kind of attitude or intense need to be superior or in control. It very competitive and territorial all the time! It's just exhausting to be around and very divisive. That's where my passive aggressive response comes from in the first place...and that's what my radar is so finely tuned to pick up but....it's so finely tuned I pick it up at times even when someone may act like this at times but are not always the way I just described. This is my own projection and it also has it's own downsides. That is exactly what I am now redefining so I can move away from that reaction in myself. Like I said...it comes with awareness of it and practice and I have reduced that down to almost 0 at this point. The "hit" is more of a "light tap" so to speak and I don't allow it to control what I do anymore.
Regardless of how these things play out (the differences)....what you said about your H not being able to see this is probably right on the mark. It's the hardest thing to get us to see because we can't really see ourselves which if you think about it....it hard for anyone to see. The problem for us is we really need to see this more than anyone else because of the ADHD. It's not something everyone needs to do aside from us. That's why it's so hard! lol
I read another article from the same website not long ago that really stated something that I have to completely agree with. You can't beat around the bush and be indirect or not say state exactly what the problem is. That means not being so nice about it but not being mean either.......but not being afraid to say exactly what you see and how it affects you and being as accurate and honest as you can without losing your cool or backing down if you are right.
I'm really good at squaring off and being passive aggressive in the face of someone like this already so for me...it's just changing that into speaking directly and holding my ground with my wife for example. She has a touch of that competitive thing I was saying so I've had to change my response from being PA to being strongly assertive and putting up with her response to this anyway and not backing down for a while until I finally wore her down and she gave in. For someone who lives to be competitive....their first response is to become more that way if they feel like they are losing.
If you are too easy and back down from this too much they feel like they have won and will keep doing it as a means to avoid responsibility for their own reactions as justified as it may seem to them. In my wife's case....my ADHD was the perfect excuse for her behavior and that is the exact thing that was setting me off in the first place. I finally got past that "really? you're messing with the wrong guy" attitude and became really assertive instead before we both were able to get to the place where we are now.
I wish I had a better solution to offer you than this but it is exactly how we got to this place together and how we ended up doing it. The one thing that was different in our case was that I was the one who had to get her to see her part not the other way around? I think your own version of this might serve you too based on what I just said?
Submitted by Shelby on
Your comments are so on the mark! In our relationship, I feel we need to discuss our problems to expose our different viewpoints. My husband runs from the idea! Sometimes he agrees to a plan, only to do what HE wants to do anyway. And sometimes he over-reacts by saying "I'm the world's worst (husband,father,friend)" I heard a saying "I'm only responsible for what I say. I'm not responsible for what you hear." I choose my words very carefully, but sometimes he doesn't hear them as I mean them. I think he feels the problem is just overwhelming to him.
Submitted by kellyj on
I smiled when I read this because of what I left out without being able to predict the future. I'm still going to stand on everything I've said...but with one (small but HUGE addition ). Trial and error, adaptation, and a willingness to be flexible to change.
As it turns out....what worked for a while....fell apart and needed to be changed. What worked for the moment in having the discussions and reviews for the time while it was working....eroded and fell apart and that no longer works any more. While I still think it's a good idea and might work for some very well. It didn't work over time and my wife's input only caused a strain in the process and became more of interference in the way we were going about it.
To restate this again...would be adding a willingness to be flexible and change...if what is not working needs to be modified. Trial and error I think should be put right at the top of the list with that caveat in mind right from the start.
The initial plan worked when working with each other.....it doesn't work when you are working against each other and two separate goals emerge that were not there before or stated exactly up front. When the results show that the differences aren't what each person is looking for or in the same way exactly....then you need to change or try again and this just comes down to finding the balance between the two.
#1 on my list to add into what was said. Room for adaptation, flexibility and a willingness to change with an agreement to try it and see if it works...and using trial and error to get there.
This is what I am currently doing with my wife...and saying so up front.
I'll also throw in to this..that I asked my wife as of this morning....can we only look for things we agree on...and not focus on the things where we don't. And she agreed:)
Submitted by Zapp10 on
I agree also. This is a basis for any relationship and an excellent one for BOTH parties to agree on and MAINTAIN!!! EVEN if you have ADD or any other "issue" that can "compromise" a relationship you say you value.
Get that sucker in writing........and sign with a BIG FAT MARKER!!!!! Because if or when they deny it you can shove it up.......OMG! I have got to stop having so much fun!
I think this advice may be fine IF....
Submitted by overwhelmedwife on
I think the advice in the article is sort of fine IF your husband does not have SEVERE ADHD combined another issue, such as raging.
I don't agree with the whole "they can't help it" excuse. While they can't "help" having ADHD, they do have the choice to do something about it. When my vision started failing, I couldn't help THAT, but it was MY responsibility to go to the eye doctor, be examined, and get glasses/contact lenses....and later Lasik.
I agree overwhelmed wife.
Submitted by MFrances on
I agree overwhelmed wife. The husband has to be in treatment and working at the treatment-therapy is hard work, it's not just going once a week or every two weeks to chit chat (sometimes it is though and it's time for a new therapist). There are plenty of examples and books on how to cope and create strategies to change. The person has to want to. I feel like my husband is at the point of it's my ADHD and nothing can be done about it. Well, there are people with ADHD that have trained themselves to remember things, who have worked on their anger. No one is perfect and there will always be times when forgetfulness happens and anger erupts but that should not be the norm.
ahhh...the chit chat
Submitted by overwhelmedwife on
My H purposely picks therapists where he can spend the hour with chit chat. He really just wants an audience. For many years, he went to "Paul" for therapy. I used to call Paul his "paid friend" because all they seemed to do was talk politics, etc. H knew all about this guy's family. It was ridiculous. Finally, after 6 years, H admitted that no therapy was going on. then he found another T, "Julie". With Julie it was some of the same. H would sit in her office telling her funny stories to charm her. Again, no therapy was going on. Then there was "Rob". Rob was a true T and H didn't like that. H didn't want any focus on his issues. Then he started going to "Jane." With Jane it was chit chat again. So much chit chat that sometimes their sessions would run 2 hours. Then Jane fired him when she found out that he had been dishonest with her.
What is with these horrible T's out there??
You nailed it: He just
Submitted by MFrances on
You nailed it: He just really wants an audience. That's a perfect description! That is an awful history of therapists. I think part of the problem is, with the "patient"-they really do only want therapists they can chat with and when they get one that makes them buckle down they find a reason to not go anymore (and the blame is put on the therapist). Therapy is hard work (or should be) and if the person isn't committed to do that work than it doesn't matter if the therapist is a good one or not. But also the therapists-some are better than others and some can get away with seeing patients that only chit chat and just let the paycheck roll in. Others are more dedicated. I've worked in the MH health field and have seen both. the problem is finding and keeping a dedicated therapist.
My H kept patting himself on the back....
Submitted by overwhelmedwife on
My H acted like he was some hero because he was going to therapy all those years. lol Sorry, but sitting in someone's office sharing BS is not therapy.
There never was any "work". The last therapist did recommend a few books. H did buy them but he didn't read them.
There was never any behavior modification therapy or anything. Paul never realized that H was an alcoholic....the subject of booze never came up! So, H never told him!
the last 2 T's really wanted him to go to AA meetings, but H only went to a couple meetings and then quit.
Interesting that you use the
Submitted by PoisonIvy on
Interesting that you use the term "BS." When my husband was with his most recent therapist (he's seen four or five during his adult life), at one point I said that I thought he was BSing the therapist. He reported back to me a few weeks later that he had asked the therapist if the therapist thought this was true, and the therapist said no. I stand by my allegation. Sure, I don't know what went on behind those closed doors, but I have a feeling that my husband was doing no better than going in and regurgitating the same feelings every session. I think the therapist made an attempt to do some behavior modification but my husband would say, in essence, that he couldn't do the things the therapist asked him to do. This "relationship" ended last fall. My husband said he had called the therapist (at my urging) to make more appointments and the therapist blew him off. This might or might not be an accurate interpretation by my husband, but I must say I sympathize with the therapist. My husband is difficult to deal with!
Submitted by overwhelmedwife on
He reported back to me a few weeks later that he had asked the therapist if the therapist thought this was true, and the therapist said no. I stand by my allegation.
I agree with your position.
Who knows exactly what your H asked his T, and who knows exactly what the T responded.
I look at it this way....If he goes in and complains about how hurt he is, and how bad he feels, and so forth, then asking, "do you think I'm BSing" is going to get a "no" response.
However, if he goes in and complains that his wife is the "worst on earth," and his boss is "mean to him" and he has no friends, etc, then again, the therapist isn't going to respond that s/he thinks he's BSing, s/he is going to just think that s/he has a client who "blames others" for everything.
And...as you've noted, your H can be difficult to deal with. There are T's that are not only a bit scared of their clients, but also don't want to "annoy" them and lose business.
I used to tell my H that Paul only kept him for many years because H was a reliable $100 a week income for him. Who's going to blow off an easy $5200 per year from a client who just wants to "shoot the breeze an hour a week.
Books, I love it when they
Submitted by MFrances on
Books, I love it when they recommend books. First my H is not a reader, second with his ADD he cannot finish the book if he even starts to read it. The only book my H read (but actually didn't finish-got pretty far though) was one written by a psychiatrist that has ADHD himself. Interestingly, I found it very difficult to read (because of the author's ADHD) but my H didn't. He did try some of the tips in this book but that only lasted a couple weeks.
Submitted by HyperBallad on
Yes! What is it with the books they are supposed to read? Smiling. They have ADHD! There is definitely a disconnect there!
I think we found a good therapist together - but yes - my dude had a similar solo journey. My H said his solo therapist read him children's books!! I can't believe therapists are getting paid to make small talk!
Submitted by dvance on
Children's books-that's pretty good--here's one for you--my DH's husband wanted me to get one of those "How are You Feeling" charts with the faces on them that show different emotions to present to DH to make sure he was "in a place to be able to hear me" before I spoke to him. Google these-they are in every therapy catalog ever...for children. Our special ed teachers at my school use them with the little kids. In no universe is this an adult tool. Secondly, the therapist had DH put up two coat hooks in our walk in closet and put three metal washers on one of them. I was allowed to ask DH three questions a day--once I had asked a question, I had to move a washer to the other hook so we knew how many questions I had left. Again, seriously? For an adult? It just demonstrates to me how much an ADHD person CAN pull one over on a therapist. And my DH wants his cake and eat it to--he insists he is not fragile or delicate, that he can handle anything, but then we have these two small examples (there are more) of ways he is showing he is not able to handle very much of anything. Now, I understand both of these were his therapist's idea, but DH LOVED them, was all over them, and could not understand why I would not participate in either one. The thing I am most sick of is having to consider and plan every word that comes out of my mouth--is DH tired, overwhelmed, what kind of day did he have, is he distracted, am I speaking in a polite tone ( because if I am not polite, forget the actual content of what I have to say, he gets totally hung up ont he tone ), and I giving TOO much information at a time, am I being clear. For gods sake. There is no other adult in my life that I have to do that with. I totally understand normal human consideration--like, if your person has had a horrendous day at work--probably NOT the time to have a big life changing conversation. I get that, but this is WAY beyond the bounds of normal human consideration. There is not a word that comes out of my mouth that hasn't been thought about, turned over, considered. In the past two years I have gotten very quiet when I am around him. It's just more trouble than it's worth and it's a crap shoot whether the information will be retained any how.
Therapists........so many that arent affective
Submitted by dedelight4 on
My husband did the same with therapists. He found 2 different ones that just listened to him talk about "stuff", but they never talked about his issues.
The psychiatrist who diagnosed him gave him VERY bad advice I have come to find out. Leave it to an adhd person in denial to find a person to listen to them glorify themselves and walk away on top of the world. Ive watched it. Its such a waste of money, and time and does nothing for the affected couple. How do these "therapists"LIVE with that? They have to know at times when they are being conned. Or at least you would think.
Finding a Good Therapist
Submitted by MelissaOrlov on
Sadly, there are not nearly enough therapists who genuinely know how to deal with ADHD in adults - simply put, they weren't trained for this in school, and may have picked it up piecemeal. Adults with ADHD need what I call 'activist' therapy. What works are strategies such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) - shown in research studies to help those with ADHD because they are action oriented, not talk therapy. So almost any therapist who does talk therapy (you talk, they listen, for the most part) isn't going to be a good fit with a person who has ADHD.
There are some good therapists in my referrals section, if you are interested, as well as coaches at the bottom of the page. In addition, if you Google "Adult ADHD" and the name of your town you may find someone who specializes in ADHD in your area. CHADD and PsychologyToday.com also have lists.
Submitted by vabeachgal on
My husband only went to 8 sessions and he hasn't provided any feedback to me. The sessions were at a practice with both psychologists and psychiatrists. The presiding psychiatrist has published about ADHD so I "guess" the practice is fluent on the subject. I found (because my husband hides things - personal, financial, etc.), a crumpled up paper describing some kind of sensory feedback that takes a minimum of 8 sessions - I guess some kind of desensitizing? I am sorry that I can't remember the name of the treatment because he threw away the paperwork. When I googled it, there were references to using it for ptsd and secondarily ADHD. What are your thoughts on this? Is this my clue that there is a significant co morbid condition?
Can't really say...
Submitted by MelissaOrlov on
Sounds as if the practice knows ADHD, and perhaps the paper you saw provides a clue that the practice is more 'activist' than you suspect. But I can't comment on why or what was done, since only your husband and his doctor(s) know. Have you seen any differences in his approaches or general demeanor...what he reacts to, etc?
Your best bet is to find a good, non confrontational time, and simply ask him. Something such as "I'm not trying to get into your business, but I am curious. Did you find the work you did helpful?"
Thank you. Yes, I did that
Submitted by vabeachgal on
Thank you. Yes, I did that but got the deer in headlights look - not willing to share. He just said "a lot of things." He doesn't want to share so I need to respect that. I put it as I know that that is privileged communication and you're not required to share, but it would sure help me understand. Understanding, however, is crucial to me for resolution so it's a tough one. I need to be able to understand so I tend to view it as withholding and obstructionist.
I did notice a difference. He made an effort to focus on conversations. I saw direct eye contact and full attention. I guess I never realized how little he actually paid attention and how he expressed non attention with non verbal cues. I felt my anger subside because I could see that he was paying attention and listening so I didn't have to try as hard to communicate. He made an effort to stop promising to do things that he knew he may not ever do. He was able to verbalize that tactic so I understood. Understood, but not pleased.Strangely, even though he still wasn't going to do anything, it made me feel less tense because I wasn't feeling the betrayal and unintentional lack of follow which I interpret as a lie. The fact that things still need to be done and fall to me is another topic. Of course, that's why so many non-ADHD spouses are exhausted. I see that he pauses before responding with off the cuff remarks and has shown a better ability to reflect prior to making decisions. He had trouble expressing it, but he said he was trying to "catch" himself "thinking down the wrong path." I wish he would continue with therapy. He has many admirable qualities and without ADHD related issues we get along very well. He said that the therapist had the ability to explain things in terms he understood so he could "get" what I've been saying. LOL. Mostly I wish I could velcro this woman to my side and have a permanent "translator" in the house. He seems to think progress so far is enough - it's done - fixed - okay now. I still need a partner for the heavy lifting of thought and planning and it's not there yet but I can see an effort. He still struggles with planning or coordinating chores. The common saying in his family is "X won't do anything he doesn't want to do..." I don't know if that is ADHD or just a$$h*!3 stubbornness.
Books and ADHD
Submitted by MelissaOrlov on
Just a thought here, as an author of two books that those with ADHD should read...there are usually audiobook versions available that can be listened to in the car, etc. So when someone recommends a 'book' what they are talking about is the 'content' in it, not the format...
I fell into the role of
Submitted by Shelby on
Submitted by Shelby on
My husband is on up there in years and is not getting therapy or medication (because of health issues). I think he feels that he has gotten along this far without either and anyway it's too hard to change. That puts the ball in my court to try to find ways to cope with his ADHD. On good days I have learned to not expect him to remember things or proceed with tasks in an organized manner or pick up after himself. I battle daily with resentment and unmet expectations. Sometimes I deal with it better than other times. I joined this blog to get some pointers about how wives cope.
Submitted by Zapp10 on
I am in the "upper" range of life also.....with a very late in life diagnosed H.
After 4 years of us both knowing he has ADD we are no further along...really. I consumed myself with learning about ADD.....he did not. I wanted to "help". He did not. I wanted the marriage to work(43 yrs)...apparently he did not. So here we are.....and I am learning a "new" way of being.....and he is not.
My advice......look at all the little and big things you do and re-evaluate. YOU will wear yourself OUT if you don't. He is NOT a child...he can feed himself, do his own laundry, run HIS OWN errands, make decisions affecting himself. Get your FOCUS on you. You cannot live consumed by this and you have a life that MATTERS. Move on to the process of who YOU are as an individual....NOT as a wife. So long as he remains believing it "isn't that big a deal" you can't do anything about the BOTH of you. The experts will advise that if there is denial involved success is slim to not at all. Be careful that YOU don't go to denial yourself....it is HARD to believe that someone who says they love you won't put effort into the marriage going south......they don't SEE the problem. Don't become hung up on their denial....it is fruitless.
I have, in the last year, come to this reality. We are in the last days of our life's journey.....I have CHOSEN to love my H....and let him go the way of his CHOOSING. I am not "tagging" along ....I have discovered.....I HAVE A LOT TO LEARN, DO and SEE!
It has been a difficult time, recognizing and forcing myself to MOVE forward without him....but it is NOT the end of the world......and it does get easier. For me....it has been freeing.
I am not telling you to do this.....I am just hoping you will at least take a pause and consider.....putting yourself FIRST. It is not wrong to do that.....You have to value yourself outside of being a wife. See yourself as a person first.
You are in my prayers Shelby.
I have learned from all the
Submitted by SpaceyStacey197... on
I have learned from all the amazing people on this forum that the only way to keep sane is to put focus on myself, learn how to live a new way (like you Shelby).
Also, we had an AMAZING T back where we used to live, but she got to the point that she point blank told both me and my husband that while she would be happy to continue to work with us, that it was pointless until H started doing the work. He never really did. And while *I* did - and boy has it been good for me, he is still stuck in the same place. I guess that is where he is happy. But that is not where I am happy - so I am moving forward and onward. I am in my earliy 40s and have declared this *my* decade to rediscover who I am, and to create a life that I can be proud of.
Its as easy as this in my head these days.... I wanted a life with him, he doesn't want a life with me.
So I am moving on, just like he wants. Its the last gift i can give him. And he will have the life he wants so much to make himself happy.
Oh therapy...don't get me
Submitted by dvance on
Oh therapy...don't get me started. I have an amazing therapist who helps me a ton. The marriage therapist...not so much. We don't talk about anything in the week between therapy and we don't do anything the therapist recommends. We were supposed to do date nights planned by DH--never happened. We were supposed to do family game nights with our 2 boys--never happened. We were supposed to talk about things in between appointments--never happens. I have deliberately NOT done any of those things to see if DH would. Clearly I knew how that would go, but it's good info for the therapist. What baffles me the most is I am so freaking miserable and every session DH says things are going pretty well. My voice is gone. I don't even have the words to disagree any more. Who cares??