Recent forum posts (all topics)

  • Vacation - ADHD came along by: bowlofpetunias 1 day 10 hours ago

    I just came back from vacation with my wife, who only admits to having ADHD when it is a "you can't blame me because I have ADHD" excuse, and our two kids.

    She almost left her body pillow in a hotel room--until I reminded her to check because she had previously had to buy new ones after leaving them in hotel rooms.

    She lost her phone at Colonial Williamsburg.  She had almost lost it on our last big family vacation.  She goes through phones very quickly.  She got a new phone that night.  She then ruined the new phone at an amusement park.  Security from Williamsburg called me and said they found the phone.  I reminded her to call them back, but she kept putting it off.  She did finally call.  But her new phone is still not working and her old phone is not here yet. 

    She almost killed my phone.  I wanted to put it in a locker, but she insisted that a sealed pouch she had would protect it from the rapids ride.  Water got in.  It did not receive data or calls for several hours.  It also showed an icon for headphones being plugged in.  Thankfully it got better.

    She got into a fight a Williamsburg because she said something rather innocuous to a worker about what our ADHD daughter would like to do as an apprentice there.  Our daughter lost it.  She insisted she never said that. Further into my trying to calm her down, she complained about things that I am all to familiar with, such as my wife telling personal and medical inforamtion about us to strangers.

    At Harpers Ferry, our daughter left us to find a bathroom.  My wife said she would look for her in the bathroom and I should look around the building we had been in.  I found her right away.  I could not call my wife because my phone was broken and I did not know where the bathroom she was going to was located.  So I waited. And waited.  I finally tried to find the bathroom and ran into our son.  He told me that my wife as shopping in the bookstore!  It did not occur to her that she should come back and tell me what she was doing first--despite similar things happening earlier in the trip.

    Our daughter complained about not liking civil war cites, but she is crazy about Williamsburg--probably autism spectrum issues.  My wife tried discussing this with her, and our daughter erupted.  There was no reasoning with and her arguments made no sense.  So I tried to ask if we could drop the subject.  Nope, my wife pressed on.  She then told me I hurt her feelings, even though I explained that i was simply trying to avoid having our daughter continue screaming during the drive.  Oh, she did did not think our daughter was screaming.  We each had our own interpretation, both of which are equally valid.  Um, no.  There is such a thing as objective truth and our daughter was throwing a fit!  My wife often does not know when to back off and gets into big, big fights with our daughter.  She then said she felt that we were "piling up on her."  I pointed out that at no point did I take our daughter's side or say that my wife did anything wrong.  If we were not working together or focussing on the same issue, then I could not be "piling up on her."  Once again, this was a matter of her feelings.  That trumped any logic about what piling up on means.

    On the way home, we went through a McDonalds drive thru window around 4:30.  None of us had eaten since breakfast.  I said I wanted a chicken sandwich.  She got done with everyone else's orders and then asked me if I wanted anything!  Uh, I haven't eaten since 9 am!  And I just told you I want a chicken sandwich!

  • He’s THISCLOSE to leaving me: re-traumatized reading ADHD marriage book by: DepressedADHDSpouse 1 day 13 hours ago

    Hello everyone,

    This is my first post and I’m sorry that’s its such a dark, long one. I’m just in a very bad place right now and I don’t know what to do...

    I’m the ADHD partner, and my husband (non-ADHD partner) and I recently discovered Melissa Orlov’s book, The ADHD Marriage. We’ve been together 10 years, and it’s reached a tipping point.

    I read it, and I feel hopeful. For once I feel like all of the problems can be explained and there’s a path forward.

    He read it, and he’s so traumatized, he can’t even talk to me about it. Its brought back up all of the years of pain that I’ve put him through. 

    I feel like counseling is necessary, both individually and as a couple, but I know he’s not willing at this very moment. We’ve done counseling in the past, but he’s so close to done with us that he doesn’t have the energy, motivation, to put work into something like that now. I can’t blame him. He used to be loving, caring, patient. I’ve completely zapped every last bit of patience that man ever had - he never even used to raise his voice, and now he screams at the top of his lungs, tells me I’ve ruined his life, and a lot of other hurtful things. But that’s what I’ve done to him. He’s not an abusive person. But 10 years has worn him down. 

    I’m a terrible partner, I can see that. I wouldn’t blame him if he wanted to leave me. Everything we’ve tried before has failed. Of course I now understand why - we were never dealing with the source of the problems. I knew I had ADHD. I’ve been medicated for it for 20 years!! So stupidly, I thought, “well, I’m medicated, I made it through school, that’s that”. I had NO idea that it was wreaking havoc on our relationship. Yes, my lateness, forgetfulness, difficultly paying attention we’re a few sore points. But I didn’t attribute it to my inability to make progress on important things, on organization, paying bills, remembering deadlines, being ready for the holidays etc.  Always a day late and a dollar short. And so began the “Parent-Child” dynamic in our relationship, and made everything worse. 

    And now, here we are: I feel like we’ve finally found the answers, but for him, it might be too late. He doesn’t want to trust me again, after so many broken promises. I don’t blame him. But at the the same time, I feel like he’s giving up 2 feet from the finish line. I don’t know what I’m going to do if he’s too little too late:(

    Has anyone else experienced this? A Non-ADHD spouse being emotionally re-traumatized from reading Orlov’s book? 

    Thank you for listening ❤️ 

  • How to forgive when you know it won’t stop by: Brindle 2 days 38 min ago

    If I’m going to find any happiness in this marriage at all, I have to find a way to lay down my anger.  I don’t even like the word “forgive,” because it always evokes this feeling of him getting off without any consequences.  

    But I’ve done the analysis.  Forgiving doesn’t mean there are no consequences.  His consequences: not trying to do anything about his adhd or improving the marriage is that he keeps causing problems for us all and that he doesn’t have the good marriage he says he wants. 

    Forgiveness just means that I put down my anger so I can stop being the sole miserable one.  I can find peace in my heart regardless of him.  And I need to, because he’s taking a toll on my health in many ways.  

    But... HOW?!  How do I do that when I know, that as they stand, he isn’t going to change. This is also my future.  

    The only way I can see forgiving, meaning laying down my anger, is to emotionally just separate even more.  Maybe even grieve the man I thought I married.  Like he’s dead. And somehow try to accept this different man in his place, the one who does not see or know how to put work into a relationship, regardless of whether it’s adhd distraction or selfish laziness.  

    I don’t know how to lay down anger over things that will continue on as they have before.  Is healing possible when they just won’t DO anything?

  • imagine by: jennalemone 3 days 17 hours ago

    Imagine what your life will be like after the kids are gone and nothing has changed between your spouse and you.  And the only thing that has impacted your relationship is that you have "taught" your spouse that it is OK to ignore you, "do his own thing", spend his own time and money as he wishes without discussion with you.  I am the voice from the other side of your future telling you that this is how you will have to accept your life.  

    You will have to accept that:

    • you were not loved even though you loved and sacrificed for the marriage partnership.  

    • you are not only not loved but you are hated and blamed for all his failures...cognitive dissonance.  He does not take responsibility (or even remember) ANY of the history of your marriage except what he did good.

    • you will have to face the sorry fact that you were not good to yourself.  You gave so much of yourself that you don't even know what you want or who you are.  Because you believed that if you loved enough and worked hard enough that things would work out OK.  

    • you may, at the end, give yourself the adjectives of "weak", "voiceless", "sad" and you may be financially stuck.

    • you will then have to accept WHO YOU ARE NOT and WHO YOU COULD HAVE BEEN in your own right.

    I have been looking up the word "gaslighting" lately and realize that while I was loving and working, H was doing a dance/playing games of trying to get away with things.  He was just limping along trying to not work too hard, amusing himself and exploiting the fact that I was willing to try and try some more and not leave. In his own world, things were going fine.  I, on the other hand, did not want to disappoint or annoy or manipulate my H.  I was afraid of his mean words....taking them to heart on to myself.  Now I am standing up for myself and H does not like it so he shuns me completely and slams things because I am treating him like he has treated me all these years.  It is educating to me to watch how he reacts when I do that.  And to think that I lived like that with him most of my adult life trying to appease and connect with him.

    My advice, to anyone young enough or financially well off enough is to learn about gaslighting and what to do about it.  What I have found out is that I should have left when I first felt disrespected and unloved.  Then not take him back unless he actively shows that he cares and is willing to act like a husband who cares and communicates like someone who cares.  As it is for me, we are two roommates who don't particularly like one another.  

    At this point there is no use in trying to make things any different than they are.  I have been married but my husband has not been married.  I accept that and move on with things that are healthy and connected. 

  • Avoiding Confrontation with ADHD Spouse by: sparame 1 week 9 hours ago

    I have spent the day reading posts on this site all day and cannot believe it has taken me this long to find you all. My husband is ADHD. We have been married for 15 years. He was diagnosed about 8 years ago and it has been his crutch ever since. He was a very successful construction project manager, then became a realtor. He was driven, focused, and hard-working. He supported me while I was in law school and continued to do so until I found a good firm to work with. Since his diagnosis, he says it is too difficult to work. I told him it's fine if he doesn't want to work, but he needs to maintain the house and take care of the boys. We have two boys, 12 and 10. He doesn't make it to any of their games on time, doesn't help with homework, and, during the summer when they're home, he stays in bed and watches movies while they run around the house with no structure. I work 10-12 hours a day, leave work to get them to practice or school activities. I have to leave the boys checklists and they call me at work if they need anything, even though my husband is in the house. The exterior of our house is in shambles, and I had to hire cleaners to care for the inside. He yells a lot, ignores us, and basically acts like he doesn't want a family. Any time I cry to my husband that I need a partner and I feel like I'm drowning, he tells me to F off. When I suggest that he time himself during the day so he can determine where his day is wasted, he tells me to F off. When I ask what he did during the day, he tells me to F off. When I ask him to try to make dinner, he tells me to F off.

    And now here is my dilemma. When he does get involved, it's embarrassing. He is quick to get angry and think the worst of anyone. We are always late to events when we drive together. He often disappears and I'm left waiting for a ride or calling him repeatedly. My older son plays baseball. His last tournament did not go well and my husband is furious. Mind you, his season began in November and the entire season went really well, except this ONE tournament that my husband is hyper focused on. We have a 20 minute post-season conference with the coaches this week. My husband says he intends to tell the coaches they suck and that my son is done playing with them. My son loves this team and these coaches have been really good for him, with everything he is dealing with at home. My husband also doesn't let anyone speak and often speaks loudly over someone when they try to talk. I tried to tell my husband that our son should continue to play for this coach and this has been a great season overall. He told me these coaches are assholes and he intends to tell them so. He said they can't shut him up and he will speak for as long as it takes. 

    Our son will be humiliated. I will want to crawl under a rock if my husband behaves as he says he will. What do I do??? What cn I say calmly to my husband to get him to back down and realize he's not thinking about our son? 


  • What should my reaction be to inappropriate jokes? by: Brindle 1 week 3 days ago

    My husband has this thing about making jokes at all the wrong places and times.  And, so many of you know how this goes, if I tell him that what he just said or did was rude or interrupting what I’m trying to accomplish, he doesn’t own it. Instead, there are a few things he might do.  He might just ignore the entire scenario, he might make more jokes and have the attitude of “what are you going to do about it, huh?!”, or he might get irritated.  There have been maybe ten times when he laughs and says, “you’re right; that wasn’t helpful,” but then he continues to laugh to himself or smirk.  

    It gets even more frustrating if this happens when we are in a group with others.  I will see people exchange glances when he interrupts me to make a joke.  And certainly, that’s not the moment to say anything to him.  It would make a scene. 

    I have a theory that a lot of it is because his trying to stimulate himself.  I can see that, but he cannot.  He doesn’t know all that much about adhd and the many ways it can manifest.  What little he had learned about it has already faded to the background for him.  And pointing it out, “I wonder if you interrupting me with a joke on something unrelated is an adhd symptom for you?” would not go over well.  And these days, I don’t care too much about educating him.  He doesn’t care about personal growth and has said so.  

    Me being frustrated in the moment doesn’t change his reaction.  He doesn’t show empathy or remorse.  So saying, “when you interrupt with a joke, I feel like you see this conversation with me as a bother,”  will not change anything.  In fact, he will play it off like I’m being too sensitive or making a big deal about a little joke.  But this happens enough that it isn’t me.  It’s frustrating to not just me, but others as well who also try to talk to him.  

    I could respond to his deflection and minimization by calling them what they are, but that will bring more anger on his end and more turning it around to me.  There is no way to get through because he doesn’t want to change.  

    And I’m tired of trying to open his eyes.  

    So what should my response be?  I’m ready to draw a boundary on this for my own sake, but mostly for myself.  I expect no change whatsoever on his end.  So “boundary” is a loose term here.  I mostly want to take some sort of purposeful action that validates my experience with him, but also shows that I won’t be walked all over. 

    So I could just silently stare at him and give a long pause to the point of awkwardness, but that doesn’t feel satisfactory to me.  Too passive.  Any ideas?




  • Nons- what benefits have you gotten from their adhd fallout? by: Brindle 1 week 5 days ago

    Meaning, though the consequences of their untreated or poorly treated adhd are often negative for us, sometimes we can find the silver lining for ourselves. 

    Silver lining for me: I have learned a lot about mental health, better communication skills, and ways to help my kids.  I didn’t learn these growing up, and if I’d had a normal marriage to a neurotypical person, I might never have learned because maybe I could have limped along without being forced to learn and grow.  So it’s a good thing, because knowledge and more skills are always good. 

  • Lapses in memory by: kdak9 1 week 5 days ago


    I joined this group a while back, but I’ve put it on the back burner because I’m just always hopeful that something will change with my husband and I won’t need to acknowledge how truly stressful life is with him. 

    My husband and I have been together for 12 years. He was diagnosed with ADHD shortly before we started dating. I’ve always questioned if he has another learning disability or undiagnosed disorder in addition to ADHD, but then when I read the experiences of others, it seems his behavior is pretty dead on. 

    The problem that I’m currently facing, and curious if anyone else has experienced, is what I refer to as “lapses is knowing,” where he seemingly forgets things that he has known for years. Most recently, the most noticeable instance has been forgetting the amount of food the dog is fed. It may seem silly (and he acts like I’m just nitpicking or like I’m wrong about it) but our dog has been eating special food for well over a year and all of a sudden my husband on 3 occasions in the last month or so has forgotten how much to feed him...and last night insisted to me that I was wrong and he’s been doing it that way all along. I know it may sound insignificant to be fighting over dog food, but it’s just a recent example of the many instances where he completely forgets something that he has previously known. Other arguments have been over things like him insisting we have central air (when we clearly don’t have any duct work) bc the thermostat has a cool option. I also notice his lack of understanding conversations that he is having, not only with me but his interpretation of conversations that he has had with other people can be way off. 

    Im not sure if this is a normal adhd symptom as someone gets older (my husband is 45) but I’m getting very concerned with the frequency of his utter confusion. I told him i think he needs to see a neurologist but he has always had a knack for blaming me for all his problems or deflecting to things i do wrong or the tone I’m using to not have to actually address my concerns. 

    I could use some feedback from other people who may understand bc i find that my friends who don’t have significant others with adhd think my complaints are the same as theirs, but it’s very very different. 

  • Don't you just hate it when... by: bowlofpetunias 2 weeks 10 hours ago

    they pull out ADHD as an excuse for bad behavior and mistakes but otherwise fight tooth and nail to insist that they can't possibly have ADHD?

    Earlier this year, I had some trouble with my car battery and had to get jump starts at work.  I therefor bought two of the rechargeable jump starters--one for my car, one for her van.  A few months later, I noticed that her jump starter was in the front seat area of the van and I warned her that was not a good place to keep it.  She did not listen and left it there.  Then I found it on the driveway, saturated with water.  My best guess is that our daughter knocked it out, as she is prone to do and as I had feared would happen if it remained in the front seat area.  Our daughter regularly throws things around, such as through game controllers or remotes on the floor when she wants to watch TV or throwing stuff off our bed so she can watch TV in our room.  Garbage does not go in the garbage can, but in convenient places such as behind the couch.

    My wife's response?  I should give her my jump starter to take on a trip, even though she has a much newer vehicle and I had been getting stranded at work because of problems with my car battery!  I told her that this was another case of her making a mess and assuming that I would eat the consequences for her.  I call this behavior "I made this mess--Now YOU clean it up!"  This event came up in counseling last night, and she said that I should not have "punished her" given that I think she has ADHD.  (I pointed out that this was not me punishing her, but the natural consequences of her not being responsible with the jump starter.)

    ADHD--it's not a diagnosis that can lead to improved marriages through proper treatment.  It's a Get Out of Jail Free card!

    Any time I mention her ADHD symptoms she becomes insulted.  Even though she recognizes both of our kids have ADHD, she still acts as if it is a stigma and that it is better to deny having it than to confront the problem.  Hey, as long as there aren't any consequences for her, why not?  

    Last night, I also mentioned several times that I needed to get to bed because I have to get up at 5:30 to go to work (and be there by 8:00).  My wife has the summer off.  Our son was tying up the restroom, and our daughter was watching TV in our bed room.  I got them out by myself.  When my wife finally came up for bed, she got into a big argument with our daughter--even though I had repeated that I need to get sleep.  She was yelling right outside of our bedroom door.  When our counselor asked how we take care of each other, I provided the example that I try to keep the kids quiet when she needs rest.  When I need rest?  What does it matter--there isn't any real problem as long as she can sleep in!  I was up past midnight.

  • Like many of you, I'm tired by: lolaguzman 2 weeks 10 hours ago

    I’ve been debating for days whether to write or not. I've been off social media for a while and I really don't have friends. I don't know how to do this; I guess I'll just write. I've been with my husband (partner not married but engaged-super long engagement) for 9 years. He was recently diagnosed with ADHD and I feel the news destroyed my world. A lot of things clicked in my head as soon as I started to do research on it. For the first time I stopped blaming myself for everything, from being somewhat not social too demanding to spend more time together without other people. Like a lot of you out there, he hasn't had a steady job in years and when he did something always happened that he was either laid off or left.

    I had a miscarriage on mother’s day this year, would have been my (our) first child. He was supportive from beginning to end. He's really a nice guy and has never cheated on my, which is something I can't say about my exes. Things got really bad about 2 years ago, luckily he was open to couple’s therapy. We've been going for 2 years now and I'm pissed that his ADHD wasn't seen. I mean he's text book, forgetting everything, not keeping up with things, starting one thing and on to the next without finishing the first one. Getting angry and agitated over nothing, difficult for him to see my point of view. In any case the therapy has worked a little, he’s able to speak more about what he is feeling. But I can’t help to feel angry, there could have been progress these 2 years if they had somehow seen his ADHD. Also it sucks that whenever we had an assignment to better our relationship I was always the one to actually follow up, he would always do it wither because I reminded him or it was the therapist did.

    Again, he is a really nice guy, but I always said that he’s a nice and great guy to everyone but me. I’m turning 34 this year and I’m high risk to have a baby. Also menopause comes around the age of 40 in my family, so this feels like it’s over. Knowing that he has ADHD and our kids could also have is hard. I am tired, exhausted of carrying this relationship. Is it fair to end a relationship because of this? I mean, I gave him the best years of my life. Now to star again to form a solid relationship and have a child is so difficult. Having no friends or social circle doesn’t help me either. The funny thing here is that if we split, he will be a-okay. He will find someone super-fast, forget about our 9 years and move on. While I will be in a pit sadness, trying to build myself up again. I know he won’t do it on purpose…  

    I’m sorry I’m all over the place, I just don’t know what to do. I’m stuck, I give up, I’m tired and it’s not fair. I love him and don't want to leave him. But, I don't know what to do...