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  • by: justanothercatlady - 2 months 3 weeks ago


    My partner (I am a lesbian) of 3 years was diagnosed with ADHD & Generalized Anxiety Disorder. She has not yet started medication or treatment yet but will soon! I am 32 and she is 30.

    I am trying to come up with some different ways of dealing with her moods.

    The main obstacle I face is that she gets so easily overwhelmed, and that causes her to panic. She relies very heavily on me. If she can't find something in the house, she will call or text me. If she has a panic attack, she will call me and ask her to walk her through it, which I have gotten really good at. Little things like that, I don't mind helping.

     The problem is that if even the smallest thing goes wrong, it sends her into catastrophization mode. She will say things like "everything is ruined", or have a panic attack.

    - If she gets lost while driving (very often) she will go into panic, and call me.

    - If she messes up while cooking, she gets down on herself and thinks "everything is ruined" and just throw everything away, and then expect me to help her clean it or find more food.

    - If she wakes up too late and had plans that day, she will say she's "worthless" and that she "can't do anything right" and then panic (and call me).

    - The few times she's needed to switch jobs in our relationship, she gets scared, anxious, and depressed, saying she has no skills because she had a hard time in college and works in restaurants. Then I have to shoulder the financial burden for a while.

    I keep telling her that it is normal for women with ADHD to have low self-esteem (I was diagnosed ADHD as well and have done a lot of research).

    This is hard on me. If I don't do something just right it makes her very upset. I feel like I am walking on eggshells with everything I do. If I help her cook, I have to help her cook perfectly or she will snap at me. If I don't respond to her immediately, she thinks I'm ignoring her. I never know what will set her off.  This is constant.

    Just wondering if any of you have tips for dealing with walking on eggshells, and someone who has a hairtrigger anxiety response and immediately catastrophizes.


  • by: Mayadevi - 2 months 3 weeks ago

    What is a healthy productive way of dealing with this ?  I might just be brain foggy but I'm not seeing any resources concerning this. Could some Kind point me to some?

    Today I am having an allergy attack, and I have taken the WRONG medication !  Why ? Because my ADHD spouse brought home the wrong medication and I didn't have my glasses on to double it in the middle of an allergy attack.  I am Anaphylatic so this is extremely dangerous  for me, It won't kill me this time, but it could in the future.  This time it will just cause me extreme pain.

    This isn't the first time he has done this, and it's not the only safety concern .  He regularly brings home things I am allergic to, which causes me severe allergy attacks.  He not only leaves the stove on, he insists, on putting Flammable objects on the stove and then loses it when, I ask him not to do that because it's a safety hazard.

    I realize this is a bit of a rant, but the question is Honest, I am at teh end of my rope here and short of moving out, have no idea of  how to deal with this.

    He is supposedly in treatment for the past year, but all the doctor does is change his medication around, and now he is off it because it was making him unintelligible.  The "counselor has seen him ONCE for a "getting to know you session" and only tells him she will see when she can "fit him in".

    If I have to choose between my life and my husband, the choice is Definitely my life!  Is there no other way to safety for me?



  • by: JohnWilson - 2 months 3 weeks ago

    Hi gang - joined this forum today in hopes of getting some advice or at least a sympathetic ear. Melissa Orlov's "ADHD Effect On Marriage" book was an eye-opener for me when I read it last month. In the book, and on this forum, I see sentence after sentence that resonates deeply with me and my situation. To know that I'm not alone has helped me calm myself and think things over more carefully (I hope).

    My story: Diagnosed with non-hyperactive ADHD in 2000 at the age of 18, met my wife 6 mths later, married in 2008. The post-college world put a squeeze on my ADHD and our relationship, to put it mildly. I had insisted vehemently that to-do lists and sheer force of will would box everything in. Got on medication in 2010 and saw a big difference in day-to-day life. However, beyond the day-to-day things, our lives have deteriorated, mostly I think due to ANGER and the way in which we both chose to handle it.

    My own anger: put aside for a long time, in favor of keeping the peace in my marriage. In better times, it could maybe be diverted into self-improvement thoughts and lists. I have a dozen lists which range from kindergarten-cheerful to drill sergeant fury. In bad times, it would fuel a series of on/off binges: junk food, credit card charges, secret drinking, wasteful hobbies, frantic exercise. While my wife worked very long hours, I would try to focus hard on cleaning, cooking, organizing, and being supportive and attentive to her daily stresses. When a promise was made (clean the stovetop, listen to her work gripes without a random interruption, cook healthier recipes) it would eventually get broken. So we inched along to our current position, which is that "promises" and "revelations" are lies made up to keep her off my back.

    My wife: I would like to grieve for all of the above, but I'm also saddened by how much my wife's anger has transformed us. And yet it seems to be a forbidden topic. I wish I knew how to step in and undo this cycle of anger, but I'm paralyzed when thinking of what the starting point could possibly be. Bullet points:

    • In addition to dealing with me, she has a tough career with long hours and (at times) miniscule personal satisfaction. For many years, her boss would lob personal insults at her without a care, because she knew my wife would just buckle down and work harder for the good of the company.
    • Once, the way ahead used to be that I try harder and cross my fingers that she wouldn't blow up. If I felt frustrated, angry, or tired, the answer was "man up", because not stoking her anger was top priority.
    • Things are filtered through her lens a lot these days. Trying to point out a mistake = she's a moron. I suggest a thing that she said last week = her words mean nothing to me. Saying that we should postpone a conversation before it gets escalated = her feelings are so insignificant that I can't wait to run away. Tough day at work = she works so hard for zero return. Trying to read a book to understand more about ADHD = too lazy to talk to your spouse instead. Budget is tight this month = no matter how hard she tries we'll always be underwater. I write her a nice Christmas card = hers isn't written that well because she's dumb. Sitting in a nice restaurant, she'd joke that nearby people say, "who let those shlubby people come and eat here?" Leaving a friend's house, she'd joke that they thought, "boy, aren't we sorry we invited those two over for dinner again."
    • Pointing out that she might be overly sensitive, or maybe should examine her own feelings, leads to crying and statements like: "if you think I'm such a loser, then just leave here right now."
    • Won't entertain the idea of taking a break, cooling down, or agreeing to talk through an argument later. Instead I am running away, being a coward, trampling on her and her feelings. She would prefer that I "say something meaningful" right now, but won't discuss further because I "should just know".
    • If I have an angry outburst on my part, pounding my fist on the table or shouting "stop it"... switches immediately to crying, statements about how she is all alone in this life, no one loves her. Threats of self-harm, just going away forever, suicide by car accident, etc.
    • Since arguments inevitably escalate, her anger goes into strong and frightening places. In the last 3 years, I have had clothing ripped, CD's snapped in half, drywall cracked, childhood mementos cut apart, dinners dumped into the trash. Any apologies have been framed as: "you made me so mad that I had no choice, because I don't know how else to make you understand." The only canned response which works is for me to say, "yes, it was really me who broke that, because I made you do it."
    • Since I cannot walk away, call for a break, ask to not have my belongings broken, or have an outburst, I sit still and try to react quietly and calmly. What I get told is that she "must mean nothing at all, if this is the most I can muster up out of you." Attempts to explain this flat reaction are "escalation" because I wind up saying too much.
    • For fear of embarrassment, there is no one else she can talk to about any of this. She has few friends due to time and energy spent on her career, and has implied that she wouldn't expose such a harrowing secret to the friends she does have.
    • In 2012-13, we attended couples counseling. She told me up front that this made her miserable because she would have to discuss very private problems in front of a stranger. Has said vehemently many times that counseling stuff is for "crazy people", not her.
    • Has said lately that people with ADHD, OCD, autism, etc. are coddled because society invents these categories for weak people. Get your label, and everyone can bow and kowtow to you because you're so special. Society loves labels. Meanwhile, she never got her label and has had to work so hard for everything she has without any help from anyone. The people with labels get an excuse to slack off and maybe get some pills so they don't have to try as much as her.
    • If the timing is wrong on a given day, larger issues get flown in within 30-60 seconds of the initial "sliding-door moment". I ruined Christmas last year. I ruined our spring vacation with an argument about packing bags. Don't I remember how I lost my concentration a few years ago and had that fender-bender. I made her go to therapy, which was more humiliating than anything else she'd ever done. This is just another broken promise, or ruined weekend, or screw-up etc.

    Grieving, forgiving, and moving on from past hurts seems like it would be beneficial, but I don't know where to start. Discussing her feelings implies to her that it's all her fault, not mine. Suggesting that she take a certain course of action implies to her that her current feelings aren't valid. Suggesting that she read a book about anger, or talk to someone else about it, would be too embarassing—and only something that "crazy people" do anyway, not her.

    Any thoughts about how to start up a talk with her which may start to move things in a positive direction? Thanks all.


  • by: dedelight4 - 2 months 3 weeks ago

    I needed to start a new thread, when I still need to answer a couple things from other threads, but I felt this was important. It's why we (often) long term spouses of ADHD hang in there so long, and try so hard.  First I will answer that, then tell you why and how I came to my finding. I don't know if anyone else thinks this or not, but it's a possibility I've come up with for my own situation. I believe I've stayed so long, because first, I truly have been "in love" with my husband and not ONLY "loving him". We both have believed we were brought together and it was the right thing. Of course for over 23 years, we didn't know about the ADHD, which was good to find out about, yet crushing at the same time. I also have come to believe instead of ADHD, I believe he has more of Asperger's and high functioning Autism rather than the ADHD diagnosis. He's never had behavioral therapy with his medication treatments, so not much has been accomplished with the "connection" between us.

        Anyway,  I wanted to stop crying and stop FEELING so much, because I wasn't getting any questions answered from him about where WE stand as a couple. It seems like he doesn't FEEL emotions in the way most of the rest of us do.  He says, "I just don't say things very well", but yet he talks to "other people" and says things to them that he will NEVER say to me. THAT....has always hurt my feelings, and after so many years I only wanted to stop CRYING for what we "didn't have", and what I knew we "could have" and 'should have".


         In order to stop crying, I started berating myself and yelling at myself to get myself to just STOP CRYING. It felt like my husband hated me, and I hated MYSELF so much, because of feeling so rejected first from my marriage, and then the affair on top of it. I was SO ANGRY at myself for believing in something I was never going to get, words I WANTED TO HEAR, and knew I would NEVER HEAR, and wanting to feel love from someone that COULDN'T LOVE ME the way I loved him.  I didn't "feel" loved, even though he said he loved me at times (only if i said it first).  It's been SO CONFUSING and so HEARTBREAKING I can't even put into words the extent. I wish I was an eloquent writer and could write out all this in some way that would make some kind of sense.     So, after his "affair" ended and he said it was a mistake, ect. He wouldn't TALK about it, or STILL tell me where I STOOD with him. He, like many others, said, "It's over now, it's done, it's gone, just let it go". But, ANY COUNSELOR will tell you the WORST way for a marriage to try to get over an affair, is to "ignore it", and act like it didn't happen. It WILL destroy the marriage eventually. I felt like the A,  and how he ignored it afterwards, destroyed me in so many ways, I couldn't even count them.

        Now being married 32 years, and facing another yet ADHD crisis moment where my husband is in panic  mode and disappointed in yet another job, which means another move, fixing up another house and selling it, and uprooting once again, just when my daughters and us FINALLY got to be in one place at one time. Fighting him 10 years ago, when he wanted to move to THIS job, but he demanded his way, and got it, and it turned out to be a nothing job yet again. It's hard to watch him do this over and over and over again, with it always being "the job's fault", not HIM choosing the wrong jobs, or him admitting that he is scared to take chances (in better jobs) that I KNOW he is capable of.  He finds jobs where he basically works "alone", or with limited people above him, so that he can feel safe and have a sense of superiority due to the jobs being undeveloped or underdeveloped. He can then work it the way he WANTS it, instead of going into an already established position and then him having to "fit in" with their already working system. I think that scares him A LOT. But, he won't take encouragement from me on things like this, he will only take "outside" advise. (which has happened numerous times as well

         I'm not the "shiny and new" anymore, which I've accepted now. Shiny and new will ALWAYS be more of a draw and fufilling to him than any "relationship". THAT has been a REALLY HARD lesson to learn. These brain disorders can feel like abuse and neglect just as much as being abused by an "abuser". (I've known both, which is also typical of spouses with disorders) His "need' for people is in short little amounts of time, and only on HIS time and when he thinks about it. Not, so much when the other person, or me NEEDS it. Again, that can "feel" like abuse instead of a disorder. It is SO HARD to wrap your head around the concept of someone NOT doing these behaviors on purpose, and autism, ADHD, Asperger's makes people act so cold around the ones they "say" they love. It makes no sense. It does feel like neglect instead of a disorder. But, I was SO ANGRY at myself for staying, and not letting him go, so that he could live his life the way he just DOES.

         It's also been a fear of mine that if I leave, he will THEN find someone else, REALLY FALL IN LOVE, and then treat her the way I always WANTED to be treated. Interesting, isn't it? At least, I've admitted it, and owned up to this now. It's been calming for me actually. Admitting the anger, the hurt, where it's coming from and now where to PUT the darn things. It's a process....I know.

          I need peace about this, and it's something that I need to pray about (in my belief in God) so that I can truly find happiness now. Thanks for listening, guys.











  • by: jade21 - 2 months 3 weeks ago

    My husband has ADD.  Our marriage has been on the brink of divorce for the last five years.  We have attended counseling, etc.  Some things have improved.  However, the core issue of my husband not wanting to be vulnerable and put himself out there remains.  I am unsure we can get past this issue and I am realizing I will either have to live with it or leave him.  He is very self-centered and hardly ever acknowledges my needs.  He withholds his love and affection, because he doesn't want to be the first one to put himself out there and risk rejection.  I am growing increasingly tired of being the one always putting myself out there to be ignored by him.  He goes to bed without holding me or talking to me.  It's been seven weeks since we had sex.  He believes hugging me is all the work he needs to do and I should be the one to then make the next move.  He barely talks to me, but then gets upset when I make plans without him.  He wants to be close, but doesn't want to put himself out there.  I often personalize his behavior and feel like I am not worthy enough or I did something wrong and that's why he doesn't love me.  It's hard to sleep next to someone who is suppose to love you, but won't even acknowledge you.  It causes me anxiety.  I've tried to let things go and say in my head, give him time.  But I give him time and he still does nothing.  He's depressed and finally switched to Wellbutrin.  Which I believe is somewhat helping with his forgetfulness.  He can't take meds for ADD, because it makes him very angry.  I am also growing tired of hearing that he is changing for me and I'm the one forcing him to change.  He doesn't see any of his changes as being positive, but as being a sacrifice.  He was addicted to porn and had a borderline addiction with alcohol.  He shoves it in my face that I am the one who made him quit.  However, when I say if you want to do those things fine, but you are not living with me if you do, he stays.  Even my son gets hurt when he is ignored, so I know that I am just not being overly sensative.  When I tell him that I am hurt that he never texts me, hugs me, talks to me, he just says I can't hear your feelings because I cant be concerned with your feelings.  He says I need to focus on myself and can't be concerned about your needs.  I get that to an extent, however, at some point he needs to address how his behavior effects me.  He will never just say, I hear what your saying and I understand that and will try to do what you need.  If he said that, our relationship would be totally different.  That's what makes all of this feel so stupid.  But I need to feel important. I'm sick of feeling alone.  I just don't know how not to.  How do others deal with being ignored and not take it personally?  How do you continue to put yourself out there when you feel rejected?  How to you deal with someone who constantly "whines" about problems, but is never willing to do what they need to do to change them?

  • by: jennalemone - 2 months 3 weeks ago

    For those new to the board, I am the non ADD person in my marriage. I have spent years crying and ranting about H. Feeling powerless and stuck. I have come to realize that I can't change someone else.  I can only change me and my surroundings. I thought I would share this reading I found on the internet:

    HOW TO MATURE AND GROW UP FASTER by Lawrence Wilson, MD.      Google this and use it as a tool to get past the stage I was in when I began learning about ADHD.  Ranting, crying, being incredulous....looking for a knight in shining armor to save me from my distress!

    I believe I had some "arrested development" after I was married to H.  I had put all my eggs in the marriage basket and it took all my effort just to keep things afloat.  Meanwhile I was not maturing  inside myself.  I am in my 60s and realize the time I spent "helping him mature, trying to compromise with him and trying to understand him and support him" to be a dependable, conscientious husband (which NEVER happened anyhow) took something away from me. own development.

     At this age, I am trying to make up for lost time.  Learning how to be mature.  I feel stupid that it has taken so long.  I didn't WANT to be the parent of a delinquent child (I wanted to be a partner in a cooperative, loving connection).  I was in my own denial of how we were both being childish in our own ways.  I WANTED to be the loving, playful, youthful married girl in love with her knight.  

    My children needed me to be sane, confident, assuring, and a model of bravery and character - a responsible, lovely adult.  That is what I am trying to be now.  It has taken some work to "let go" of my youthful dreams.  Unless you happen to married to a knightly guy, we need to be grown up ourselves because our children need us to be adults.

    This is my journey. Here is an excerpt in the writing "How to Mature and Grow up Faster".

    2. You must learn to be tough with yourself, and very committed.  You must stay on your path.  You must not waiver in your desire to mature, and you must realize there is a part of all of us that does not want us to mature and succeed.  That part will oppose you at every turn.  It makes you doubt yourself, hate yourself, and even loathe yourself.  You must get tough with it, fight it and defeat it.  It is like the story of the dragon that was supposed to protect the damsel in the castle, but the dragon gets “too protective”.....It is the dragon of doubt, fear, confusion, depression, and death.  This is the dragon we all have.  Maturing has to do with becoming “tough as nails” with it, letting it know its days are numbered, and that it is time for the dragon that may have been useful earlier in life to retire and die.  The damsel must affirm that she or he does not need this type of “protection” any more, and that the dragon is now preventing maturity by stepping on opportunities that present themselves at the castle of life.

  • by: I'm So Exhausted - 2 months 3 weeks ago

    I love Rick Green!  And I love the Totally ADD webiste.  My most recent e-mail update from them was so in-line with my life experiences this week.

    "This is about how a small thing can feel so big, or perhaps how a small trigger sets off a huge explosion… of sadness.  Hmm. That doesn’t sound right. Anger explodes. Sadness… feels more like quicksand, pulling me down, and under."  ~Rick Green~  

      I really, really get that.  It breaks my heart to see my spouse melt into sadness and/or dispair.   I have mentioned in an earlier post that my spouse now reads this forum.  My participation here was not a secret.  We actually attended one of Melissa Orlov's Couple's seminars after I found this site.  

    I have freely shared my frustrations.  I originally thought my time of being able to post here was over.  Then I realized that the timing could not have been better.  I had turned the corner on my obsession with understanding my spouse and ADHD, and turned my focus into being the best person Liz can possibly be.  Each day I learn a bit more on how to communicate better, and how not to take my spouse's personal inventory, but rather work on my own.  

    One reality I have seen by reading countless experiences here is this:  There is evidence of a definite pattern that happens when a person has unidentified ADHD as a child, spend a lifetime develeoping their own coping pattern of behavior, and then 20 some years into a marriage, when their spouse has taken on more relationship responsibility than they should have, they finally reach their own breaking point when that unstable framework collapses under the strain.  

    I have been working on myself, Liz.  I am breaking old patterns of destructive communication.  I am breaking old patterns of scooping up more responsibility that I should by falsely thinking I could keep everything going smoothly.  It really wasn't working.  I just thought it was.  Maybe to outsiders, it looked like it was working.  But for me, it was overwhelming.  

    I have stopped making excuses.  I have stopped smoothing over rough places.  I continually have to reiterate to our 2 adult children that I did what I did because I knew at the time it was the correct thing to be doing.  Now I know better, so I am doing better.   I am valuing Liz and her well being, not sacrificing it to keep everyone else happy.  Even in that, it is really rough.  They grew up in a world where Daddy being happy was everything.  And Mommy made it her goal to achieve that.  And now I know THAT WAS NOT THE  RIGHT THING TO DO.  Everyone is having to adjust.  I upset the fruit basket.  

    I refuse to get into verbal disputes that will only get louder and louder and louder.  I know without a doubt that I cannot convince my spouse of anything he does not, cannot, or will not see.  My reality is my reality.  My prior post - ADHD - stuff to accept, and stuff not to expect - was carefully thought out.  Edited and edited many times so it would reflect my feelings.  It still struck a nerve in my spouse when he read it.  So I went and reread it.  And still feel comfortable in everything I shared.  It is always wisdom to choose words carefully.  I am finding the balance between feeling fearful that no matter what I say, no matter when I say it, it will be the wrong thing.  Oh, that eggshell walking gives me a knot in my stomach.  Is it truthful?  Is it necessary?  Is it said to purposely hurt someone else?  Those are what I choose to use as my filters.       

    I am in a community here on this forum, of those who understand.  And I continue to encourage my spouse to give himself a voice and say what is on his mind by participating.  

    "This is about how a small thing can feel so big, or perhaps how a small trigger sets off a huge explosion… of sadness.  Hmm. That doesn’t sound right. Anger explodes. Sadness… feels more like quicksand, pulling me down, and under."  ~Rick Green~ 

    The holidays are here.  I spent many past holidays skirting around a lot of things.  And being constrained by my inability to MAKE it happy and joyful for my marriage and everyone else.  So, I eneded up just not doing a lot of things I wanted and dreamed of doing,  in order to keep it peaceful here.  And in reality - it never worked.  I was not happy.  I was disappointed.  

    Thus, this year, as I mentioned in my previous post, I am doing Liz's side of planning based on Liz. What I had done in previous years was isolated myself from a lot of things because I couldn't control the situation and make it happy and joyful.

    I think I had some sort of breakthrough.  I was sharing my plans for Thansgiving with my spouse - attending a Community Thanksgiving Dinner, and then going to visit my parents. These choices were based on several things.  1.  Our children are adults, our daughter works that day, and our son is having dinner with his girlfriend and her family. 2.  My spouse had told me that he cannot do family events (my family or his family) right now. 3.  I did not just want to stay home all by ourselves. 4.  Holidays have always - yep, this time that word is valid - always been a source of upheaval as far as the emotional parts go.  Where I hoped for joy, and fun, and spending time with those I love, it was high anxiety, sullen frustration, and out and out feelings that presented themselvs as anger and hostility. My spouse appeared really cross.  He responded it was "always like this on the holidays.  Anxiety, anxiety, anxiety.  Where to go.  Who to spend time with. Family stuff........."     I responded that it always did seem to be that way, and this year I was NOT going to allow that to  rule the way I spent my holidays.  AND, I was really glad he saw that, because I felt I have been struggling with it for years.

    Oh, this relationship of mine is still in a precarious spot.  I want to be able to re-negotiate the rest of our lives.  That means some things gotta change.  Until that time presents itself, when I feel that is a possibility, I will continue to work on Liz.  And, enjoy the upcoming holidays!!!




  • by: JJamieson - 2 months 3 weeks ago

    Recently in another thread on this forum....I heard a heartfelt cry for something that really made me stop and think.  Saying your sorry repeatedly as a means to somehow make up for the times that we ADD'ers fall short in our relationships....somehow loses it meaning if it is not recieved in a way that the other person really feels that it is sincere.   As it was described.....this is not really making up for anything.  It's just apeizing the anger Gods in the moment and not doing much of anything for the other person who is on the recieving end.....espeially when it keeps happening.  I decided to go take a look at the other side of things for a change and see what they are saying about all of this.  In another forum that has more predominantly people with ADHD and fewer non-ADHD folks contributing.  In a thread (as shown below) I had the opportunity to say a couple things speaking directly to people who have ADHD like myself.  I thought it might be nice to here this from the other side taking in what I have concluded from the time I have spent listening and reading what people have to say on both sides of the "anger issue"  from those of us who struggle with this issue on our end...and for everyone else who has to deal with this on the recieving end.

    And if there is any question or doubt that I have not been listening to the non ADHD'ers and the spouses who are married to us.....this one's for you.  Thanks for being my eyes for things that are not always that easy to see.

    Re: Anyone else lash out at times to family members/S.O. and don't realize it?  (thread started by anonymous person with ADHD)

    (my response mid thread)

    Yep...what you said....take ownership of yourself and admit when you are wrong and apologize. That includes all of your ADHD behaviors no matter what the reason. And not to belabor the comment you made about Narcissism, I only want to add one more thing to what's already been said and finish my own train of thought from my previous post.

    side note: it does appear that this topic is getting thrown around on both sides of this issue and Narcissism is also being discussed there as well.

    There's a BIG difference between Narcissistic behavior and having NPD like you said.....everyone acts in their own self interest at times and this could be construed as acting or being Narcissistic in the technical sense....and to a certain degree,  this would not be normal or healthy if you didn't for your own safety or well being. (healthy Narcissism?).

    The delemma....(as I was attempting to say?) Is when others see (us) and our behavior and apply something else to it....which by default, is only what you know?

    And if you have 95 out of 100 people sitting together in one big room, and the 5 people with ADHD start doing their thang....the first thing that is going to cross the minds of the other 95 people is not going to be ADHD. To the point....everyone including us understands a behavior that looks self serving or oblivious (or appears like you just don't care ) when they see it and they are going to attribute whatever label you like to it and jump to that conclusion.

    The perfect analogy of how "perception" skews your thinking...

    When the moon sits right off the horizon it appears bigger than when it is high in the sky.    Everyone knows that the moon did not grow in size (hopefully? lol ) ...including you.   But no matter how long you stare at it and try to change this phenomenon and resize it as you know it should be......knowing all of still looks like it's bigger and it has grown in size as your eyes see it.

    That's perception hard at work and there's nothing you can do to change that except to tell yourself that your eyes are playing tricks on you and what you see is not what it appears to be.

    In this same sense.....this is what is happening to the other 95 people in the room. They know what they know (and feel what they feel).... even if you tell them that it's different and can prove it to them.  But all the the proof in the world and every explanation you can provide them about ADHD and why it's not what they think they see is going to make any difference to this any more than the first time they saw it ......or change how they feel about it...... especially if you suddenly lose your ability to manage your own anger or irritation even if you have a good reason for it.

    I think the only thing that will change how another person "feels" about this for them..... is an apology, accountability and taking ownership for it as you said.

    Anything outside of that is only get to make them feel more annoyed at you than before I think?  Not doing it again of course would solve the problem entirely.....but until that day's kind of a no brainier here if you follow my train of thought?

    Being humble helps along with an apology too.




  • by: HyperBallad - 3 months 1 day ago

    Hi All:

    I was on this website several months ago and decided to disconnect. I found it depressing and wanted to be in a hopeful place about my DH. I kept reading articles, I put myself in therapy, we are in couples therapy - I am doing all I can to "help my marriage" but I am loosing hope again.

    It started when I noticed I had a crush on a man at work. It was subtle at first - but then it turned to a small obsession. I started longing for him and even reached out to him in an email. We had a few conversations - and nothing happened. It was all in my head. I felt so bad and guilty - but the longing made me look at myself - and whether or not my needs are being met. I feel so alone in my relationship - and despite promises to make things better - I just feel disappointment for my husband.

    I have Complex PTSD - so my husband's ways of being with ADHD have ways of triggering me quite a bit. Almost on a daily basis - if I am honest. He's gotten techniques to help with his ADHD - he's on meds and he's learned tips from a counselor - he still manages to get obssessed with projects, forget things, blame me for not helping him and he brings in less than $100 a week.

    I've done a lot of personal work over the years. I grew up with poverty - I've taken a good look at it. I know that in order to remain mentally stablity - I need food, shelter and a sense of safety in my life. My husband, who is a bit entitled - hasn't proven that he can relate to this. He chooses unsafe situations, overlooks comfort and will say he's not hungry at home - won't pick any groceries out at the store - and yet, when we're in a social setting and there is food - he's the one going back for thirds and fourths.

    I made a contract before we moved into our current place. It said that he needed to take responsibilty for half our bills. He's not honored it at all. I put my foot down at the end of last month - and told him he'd have to pay his half of the rent (I've been paying for both of us for as long as I can remember - and I have my own bills to pay off!) he went to his mother! She gave him a bag of canned goods and a check that was short $100. This meant (because of his financial situation) I had to make up for the missing part - not to mention the rest of the bills he ignores and avoids while working on his projects (that I say - angrily - never amount to anything).

    What is this dysfunction? Why does he turn to his mother to "save him" and "scold him" and tell him he needs to pay her back? Which he never has done! Ever! How could he?

    I feel like I share the same cycle with him: I pay - I scold - I ask for a return - he makes a promise he can't keep. I really want to put an end to this cycle. I want a lover who is responsbile and fun. I long to feel light and laughter - instead of anger and crisis. Falling into the arms of another man seemed like a solution.

  • by: Lost Wife - 3 months 2 days ago

    After 10 years together, we're just discovering my husband has ADHD (undiagnosed as an adult, but he's had it since he was a kid). We have 3 children.

    You all know the basics of living with an ADHD spouse. The promises with no follow through, the lies, the lack of empathy, the forgetfulness, the underachievment, the difficulty in taking care of responsibilities, the messy house, the issues handling anger.

    I am finding myself at the end of my rope, emotionally, and going into almost like a self-preservation mode. The pain is so much every single time he repeats actions that he KNOWS causes me unbearable emotions, that I feel desperate for relief. I need security, trust and emotional nourishment from my partner. I get zero of this from him, though our relationship started much differently (when he was hyperfocused on me). He doesn't know how to understand my pain, loneliness and despair. He only knows how to care about himself. I know he loves me, and (unfortunately) I still love him, but I am slowly dying on the inside the longer I stay with him.

    I am having difficulty taking that final step towards divorce, though I did feel ready a few months ago before he brought me back with more promises. I know he hasn't had counseling, or gotten a diagnosis yet, and I'd like him to, but he hasn't taken the initiative to figure this stuff out on his own (for the last 10 years, I've been the one to research marital issues, set up appointments, to do basically anything that required responsibility). I told him a few months ago that I agreed to keep trying if he; A) stopped lying (can't tell if he has, he's SO good at it); B) Make small promises everyday and follow through on them so I could rebuild some trust (he followed through on about 5% of his promises); and C) research ADHD, the effects on marriage, and find help. He has not done this either.

    We have a huge deadline in our work looming (we work together at home.... a disaster with an ADHD partner) and last night I had to count on him to complete important tasks before bed.I had set up a spreadsheet with all the information so he could refer to it. He looked me in the eyes with all sincerity and told me I could count on him. He would not mess it up. He WOULD get it done. Like a hopeful little girl I believed him.

    Well, of course he let me down MAJORLY. Had his usual slew of excuses and pity party comments set up to try and make it impossible to blame him. The hurt at being let down AGAIN was unbelievable. The highest amount of emotional pain I've ever felt in our marriage (as I feel this type of pain is accumulative). On top of that, he was so busy acting the victim he didn't care about the pain he KNOWS he is causing me. He doesn't care what broken promise #1509384 has done to me. He doesn't care that I was ready to call a lawyer for a divorce a few months ago, but put myself in further pain's way to give him another chance.  If he does care, he sure doesn't show it. What he shows is he cares about himself.

    I'm the idiot who keeps staying, and I wish I could just kill whatever love I have left for him so I could really leave. I find myself dreaming of a life of peace, with the possibility of someone who cherishes me, and appreciates that I am there with him. I am angry that I am even thinking it. I am a very loyal, dedicated wife. All I want is to be married to my husband forever. To be cherished and to cherish him back. But no, I am left abandoned and alone with my hurt. Forced to put on a smile for the kids even though I am dying inside.

    I am sure my husbad will muster up something that sounds hopeful to say to me, and I really hope I can muster up the strength to say "no thanks" and start the process of numbing myself for divorce.

    Sorry for the vent. I just don't know what to do, or how to feel. I have no family or friends to talk to . I am truly alone.