Due my husband's retirement and my current unemployment, we are suddenly sharing lots of time together. We've been married for 35 years and I've always understood that his ADHD was an issue, and I've given him the benefit of the doubt for all of that time. But today he told me that I can't start talking to him any more unless I'm sure he isn't thinking about something, or I can see that he isn't doing something - because it makes him very angry when I distract him and he loses his train of thought. This came up because I asked him to quit being so mean to me when I try to talk with him sometimes. I'm floored, and seriously wondering if we'll make it to 36 years. Right now I'm trying to stay out of his space, and if I need to talk to him I go stand in the same room that he's in until he notices me and I'm sure he's prepared to hear me speak. I figure I can do this for awhile, but I can see a day coming very soon when I'll throw in the towel. I don't know if anyone has any suggestions, but mostly I just wanted to tell someone about this because nobody will understand why I walked away after 35 years. Thanks for being there to listen!
- Spending more time together may kill our 35-year marriage by: Bkfindley 4 months 2 days ago
- Separation, Limbo, What is ADD Love? by: Zoom 4 months 4 days ago
My husband and I have been separated, amicably, for more than a year after having been together for 16 years. We're both working on ourselves, supportive of each other, and trying to find our own paths without expectation. During our time apart, we've both read about ADD and independently have come to believe that we both have it. Ironically, I think this realization is strengthening our connection and gives me some hope for our future together … we have an tween daughter and co-own a business together.
On the plus side, I've estimated that we've avoided at least 17,000 - 28,000 fights because we both have ADDish tendencies and are patient and understanding of these life/culture implications (that's 3-5 fights per day we avoided because both "we get it" and don't get mad at each other). For example, I forget to pay health insurance and we lost coverage and instead of yelling he shrugged/smiled: "I know you'll fix it when you can," or we are both late meeting each other because we both can't find our car keys and both can't text because we both forgot to charge our cell phones, or I'd burn another pot because I heat up my tea in it and forget it is on the stove and he'd open windows to get out the burnt smell and ask calmly if it is worth the effort to try to salvage the pot again or just throw it out, and all family members got used to living out of clean bins of laundry near the dryer because he'd never fold clothes or transport them to dressers/closets when he was the stay-home-dad (now separated and in charge of my own laundry, I do the same thing!).
So why did we separate? Things started great when we lived in the city together and had exciting, fast-paced, deadline-driven jobs. We got a country house five years later when our daughter was born and he did the back and forth for a while and I was able to transition to self-employment. Things went down hill fast when we decided to live in the country full time. He gave up his job, we lost the excitement of the city, he got fired from his new job in the country, developed somatic back pain and depression when he became the stay at home dad, and numbed out. I saw him become unmotivated, irritable, isolated, a chronic *** smoker, cocky/unlikable to others, his sex-drive decreased. I became over-worked, resentful, exhausted, the sole bread-earner, barely able to keep up executive functioning household tasks, turned to food, filled my life with a busy work/social/volunteer schedule to be away from him (he complained about his back and never wanted to go out as a family, just smoked and watched tv), he says I became too controlling with money. Sometimes I'd developed "drug crushes" with men I now realize were ADHD because our brains/energy synched up when we'd become hyper focused together and obsessed with interests/projects/creativity together (I mean the connections were like a drug, no actual drugs for me). They were platonic connections but stirred up a deep longing and loneliness inside along with the highs of that intense connection and the lows when they ended. These connections understandably hurt him, most of all because he felt I wasn't interested in him anymore. I felt trapped in my life, fell out of love with my H, wanted a separation. He said a separation wasn't what he wanted but if I needed that to be happy, he would.
In separation, his sense of self is improving through his depression meds and his work efforts at the business we started (not making much of a profit yet but he has stepped up to work hard for the first time in many years). He has always been a good communicator, he is loving and kind, has never cheated on me, is not physically or verbally abusive, but still smokes *** a lot, still hangs out with very troubled souls, isn't really facing his childhood abuse, is oddly unlikable in the company of my friends but he's generally a sweet, good guy when we're alone. I feel like I'm making progress with rewiring my brain/autonomic nervous system through somatic therapy. I've been focusing on our daughter, being present for/attuned to her, and creating more stability/predictability in our home environment (arriving at airports really early so she doesn't experience life running down the gangplank every time we fly anymore). I'm in debt and financially carrying all of us, but I still have a specialized skill that pays well and believe I can undig if I procrastinate less and take on more jobs. It is a transition to get off the adrenaline roller coaster and just live life in a more simple, let-the-emotions-come-up-and-feel-them way.
It is hard to be in limbo with my husband. I'm feeling more grounded/together and am ready for a relationship again. I can't tell if we've got a deep connection or if my self-esteem is low and I'm putting up with something that is objectively pretty bad, or maybe his self-esteem is low and he's putting up with a woman who has a hard time letting his love in. I'm wondering if we should both get proper evaluation for ADD and possibly try meds. I think we're realizing we were both putting up walls that prevented us from experiencing a deeper connection/more intimacy in our marriage.
Any advice for getting out of limbo or how to evaluate my situation?
- a new year's decision by: dvance 4 months 4 days ago
So I made a decision: DH and I have been seeing a marriage counselor since the dawn of time and we each want different things--he has hope that things will get better, I want to figure out how to deal with the reality we find ourselves in. We don't fight, I am paying down our debt, DH helps with the kids, makes dinner when he works from home, the news is not all bad. What's bad is there is virtually no emotional connection. There has not been anything physical in 18 months. We don't go out, either by ourselves or with other couples. There is no romance, no tenderness, nothing to distinguish us from platonic roommates, so that is what I think we should get used to. Everything that makes a marriage a satisfying relationship has dropped away in the past 5 years, slowly but surely. So, at our first therapy appointment in January I said that: let's just figure out how to live like roommates. I cannot come in here every week and act like there is hope for more when there is not, it's a waste of time and money. I feel much more free the past two weeks. I don't have to worry about everything I say or do being misconstrued and I find myself actually being kinder to him, like how I would treat a friend. For 21 years, there has been bizarre behavior, unclear communication, other women, secrets and lies, sketchy financial stuff, a 6-month separation, a military deployment, PTSD from the war, periods of unemployment--all this is him and I have to hold me and my two boys together in the middle of the hurricane that is this ADHD man that I am stuck with. So you know what? I am closing down the parts of me that can get hurt by him or confused by him or let down by him or misunderstood by him. My actual feelings for him are not enough to make this marriage satisfying--how much I love him isn't even a consideration any more and over time I find I don't love him like a husband, but like a friend that I feel bad for. I regret all the wasted years. I regret that I didn't choose a more stable person for a husband and father of my kids. I regret that our finances got so messy thanks to many periods of unemployment and bad decisions that we have no money to send our oldest to college. I regret that at age 46, my only desire is to be left alone. I regret that the soft parts of me have been forced out, that there is no fun, no romance, and frankly not much to look forward to. BUT...I am starting to let that go because all of that only hurts me--DH has no idea and likely wouldn't know how to respond even if he did. So we will live like polite roommates for the next two and a half years and then see where we are. So much has been sucked out of me I don't know if it will ever come back. Add to the marriage a 17 year old who OD'd last year and spent 8 weeks in rehab and a 15 year old with Asperger's. Not a lot of extra brain power to make big life changing decisions!
So I feel good that I was honest in therapy--I cannot continue to hope this will change. I have nothing left to give and so how could it possibly get better. I am making my life sound much more bleak than I mean it to--I LOVE my job and my kids are on decent paths finally but they are still a lot of work. I have lots of friends that I do things with. I feel better being realistic, not pretending. Sad maybe, but that will pass.
- Not anger, but definately some frustration... by: SpaceyStacey197... 4 months 4 days ago
So as most of you know - I have been trying to "act from love" for the past few months, in response to my husband really stepping things up around the house, and for my OWN well being as i would rather always act from love than not.
Since he has quit his job, he has fallen back into not following through, not doing his part in the house etc. its 10-15 minutes of getting things done around the house, and then outside for a 20-30 minute break on the back deck chain smoking and looking at his phone. Its always me having to ask him to get things done that he is supposed to just do (as agreed), and then it an almost constant "I plan on getting it done", and yet... a week or THREE later the thing still wasnt done. I am trying to be patient and let him find his routine again - but its been a month since he left his previous job. I dont like having to nag, and refuse to do so as I will not be drawn into his self sabatoge. But it sure is causing my respect level to start to drop off again. I thought the progress he made on his own FOR himself was real - and now i am starting to doubt it. I know several of you warned me that it was a trick - manipulation to keep me from kicking him out (letting him stay longer). I dont want to believe that - I really dont.
I guess I just needed to vent a little. I hope he figures out what ever it was he figured out before. The sad thing is - if he just got his "chores" done in the morning, it would take 2 hours max, and then he could work on house projects or his hobby projects for the rest of the day. But he like to procrastinate until the last minute, and I swear if I didnt ask him to take care of something 100 times it would not get done. its frustrating to me because I hate living in a house with gunk on the counters, dirty dishes EVERYWHERE - not just the sink, 1000000 dr pepper cans everywhere... And when he was working, I was able to keep up on the mess. LOL Now that he is home, there is a hell of alot more mess to deal with. I will say this though - he has not given me any attitude, and has actually been spending his "own" money on things too - so its not like it was before. I just dread it getting worse..... I still dont know what his plans are - so keeping mine in tact unless I am convinced to change them for some reason.
He does seem more relaxed and happy though- and that is a good thing. I just hope he gets this lazyness under control again and good LORD he eats horribly. If I ate like that I doubt I would be able to even function at all beyond breathing. He hasnt figured out the connection between what he eats and how he feels yet.... He just doesnt have the self control to even go a month with eating a LITTLE bit better to see the difference. Sad really.
I still act from love, because I do love him. But I am certainly becoming more and more confident at how good my life is bettering every day because I am taking care of myself and not focusing on him. Being able to do this with NO regrets is what saves me.
- Learning Through Repetition ( Fortitude and Convinction ) by: JJamieson 4 months 6 days ago
I wanted to make a positive post about the progress that my wife is making in accepting her part of our relationship problems which I can start by saying her end of the legitimate things she has had to deal with on my end? In our own way....each of us has had to put up with more than we have been able to deal with effectively ( and learn to cope ) with the unacceptable a times which I could easily evaluate as a category in in itself?
1) Learning how to cope and learning how to accept the unacceptable? In respect to someone who is fighting you and in denial of their part or responsibility of the problems.....I think this is all you can do until ( when or if? ) they decide they have had enough and are ready to look at themselves ( seriously )....and look hard and close at what they really don't want to look at or admit to themselves.
Speaking directly from my own experience.....this is a large pill to swallow and it can easy get "stuck"...on the way down so to speak? I liken it to one of my dogs in the past ( a female Doberman I owned who was stubborn beyond all get out ).....when you had to give her a pill for incontinence since she was "leaking" all over the house and causing a real problem if you can imagine? ( a stinky one by no fault of her own ). We found that a daily dose of Estrogen...did the trick, but that meant ....getting the pill down her throat every day which was exactly what she didn't like? ( can you blame her? LOL )
FYI: Dobermans are wonderful animals and do not deserve the reputation they get as being vicious guard dogs. I know.....I've heard all the old wives tales about how they're brains are too small and they turn on the their masters and are unpredictable time bombs of muscle and ferocious temperament and razor sharp teeth and will attack nearly anything that moves? Well...comparing the 3 Dobermans that I did own in the past....to my two 5 and 6 pound Papillion that I own now ( one nick named Poo...for Little Shit ) who's got an attitude problem as big as Texas. LOL Rather vocal and a huge tendency for back talking and a "little man syndrome" that has always got to win in every thing!!! Or the other one who is named Po ...who runs away the second you call want him to come or want him to do anything? Dobermans in comparisons are pussy cats and big lap dogs when it comes to actual behaviors that are "frightening" or even "aggressive"...in reality?
I'm making this distinction here because I don't think that people or the person you are with ( depending on which is worse? ) have things about them that are most likely beyond annoying anymore and are really causing a disruption in your life and dogs are no different? They each come with what ever particular "brand of annoyance" not of your choosing...which now you have to live with...or simply get rid of them? And because I get very attached to my animals....getting rid of them is never an options? I have had 1 cat live to 22 years old. One dog who lived until 15...and only one animal I ever owned...did I lose prematurely from being hit by a car......and all the others have died or were put down due to age and it was their time to go? I am even loyal to my animals because they are loyal with me and I give them the same respect and courtesy as I received from them? I do feel strongly principled in respect to this...and there is a mutual respect of reciprocity that I tend to live by as a means of respecting myself....more than anything else? If you don't understand how that related back to me for myself...then you'll have to figure that one out on your own but I feel....was worth mentioning because this is one the of the qualities I think you must have in order to deal with anything of this nature....man or beast?
Anyway....back to my pain in the ass female Doberman? As I started to say....Dobbies are actually wonderful pets and have many great qualities including being good guard dogs...that is, only in that people seem to be afraid of them and mostly for no good reason other than they can be intimidating? That they can be.....but only if you are afraid of them? Like I was mentioning....my little dog Poo is about 20 times more intimidating.....but because of his size and the fact that he could barely do more damage that puncture your skin if he really got down to it.....he gets away with murder in comparison and my Dobermans were "Angels"....in the disposition and behavior department compared to my 5 lbs Papillon?
That is....aside from just this one female named Kali. Kali.....was a royal pain in the ass of a dog because she was so willfull and stubborn...even for a Doberman? And with that on top of it...she leaked urine all over the house and was ruining the carpet and furniture and creating a "stench"...that was becoming "overwhelming"....when you first walked in the door? When we finally found something that worked to stop this incontinence problem....now came another problem? Getting the pills down her throat!!! And going along with what I just said.....it come to blows between the two of us over this...and I finally had to stick my entire hand in her mouth and shove that pill......down her throat!!! Literally!!! LOL
And the reason for that is because they are such smart animals and they learn...rather quickly....to get around what they don't want to do?
First....I did as the Vet suggested and put the pill inside something she liked to eat or her food? I would come back and check her food bowl..and all that would be left was the pill sitting at the bottom of the bowl? LOL
Next.....I tried tricking her with her favorite "Treat" of all.....Peanut Butter...by making a Peanut Butter Ball..and sticking the pill inside that and gave that to her to eat? And instead of inhaling it like she normally would do....she would roll it around on her tongue until she found the pill and spit on the ground and continued to eat the Peanut Butter anyway? lol
Then....I tried just sticking the damn pill in her mouth and took my finger and shoved it to the back of her throat which I finally found that worked. Or so I thought? I began hearing this "choking sound" coming from the other room where she would intentionally sneek off to.....to cough the pill up and leave it on the floor? When I finally realized this is what she was doing.....I stated finding wet or partially dissolved Estrogen pills in variously nooks and crannies on the floor in different rooms around the house since she had learned to hold the pill in the back of her throat ...refusing to swallow it...and then run off and cough it up and try and hide that from me instead. LOL
Finally....it came to a show down between the two of us? Either I got that pill down her throat everyday to stop the incontinence problem....or I had to get rid of her because the problem was that bad? So there we were....just the two of us....looking at each other..and the kid gloves had to come off so to speak? If you can picture an 80lbs female Doberman and me standing there with a pill in my hand....I finally had to tackle her and put a reversal wrestling move on her by grabbing her rear legs and flipping her onto the ground..and then lay on top of her pinning her to the ground and then taking her by the her snout.....and pulling her entire mouth open ( manually with one hand ) and take my other hand...and literally shove my fingers so far down her throat...that I could feel her "insides" of her esophagus to the point it was too far down her throat...to cough it up any more.
And her last ditch effort to try and stop me was to try and intimidate me by growling or snarling at me right before I did that and since I knew better...and knew her well enough to know that this was a bluff....when I got her on the ground and had her pinned...I got right her face and looked her in the eye...and growled right back at her with my face 1" from hers staring her down while I had her pinned to the ground!! LOL There was no way.....no how....she was going to "win" or beat me....this time! LOL
And just to make mention again.....she never ever "bit me" or even "chopped down on me" once.....during this entire process? Not even broke the skin....which as I mentioned.....Poo ...has been known to do....by just trying to pick him up sometimes...when he has not wanted to go...where you want him to go...as a means to compare these two animals? Poo...is a very very bad dog sometimes!!! LOL But at 5lbs....the damage is negligible? LOL
On the other hand....Kali and I ...finally came to terms with this Estrogen Pill issue...and eventually ..she got the point...where she would stand there on a daily basis..and actually open her mouth up and allowed me to shove my fingers down her throat voluntarily with the caveat.....that if I didn't shove the pill down far enough and she could....she would still cough it up behind my back if I failed to get it down there far enough? That never changed....but I rarely forgot to ...."shove it"....with her. lol
I am not about to say or compare a person to a dog in respect to the process I just explained and this issue I had with Kali my Doberman? But the corollaries I can make her are not all that much different in my experience with people as well? Unfortunately....and as much as we may want to.......you can't take you partner or spouse......and throw them to the ground and put a wrestling hold on them , sit on them...and then stick your hand down their throat and force them to swallow the pill of denial? LOL But sometimes.....we wish we could, and that's a pretty close analogy in respect to humans beings and that much is very true!!! LOL
First and foremost....you would find yourself in jail if you did that so this...is clearly not an option!! LOL But I think this story is not all that far from what I just experienced with my wife at this point in time...and I also get the same feeling that the worst of it...is now over? And in the same way I respect the intelligence and know for a fact .....that Dobermans are the 4th smartest dogs breeds of all the dog breeds...and are highly intelligent animals? And because of that more than anything...they seem to have a very strong will and a mind of their own..and this is not any different I feel....than humans sometimes. Kali...was her own worst enemy in respect to the fact....that for her own good...and for her own health and well being and quality of life ( beyond creating a real problem for me and the "stink" from this issue she had ) .....what I did...was for her...as much as it was for me....and in the end....this story had a happy ending...but not without going through everything I went through...to finally get her to swallow a pill...that made her life and mine....a happier one than before? She finally passed away...at almost 14 years old.....going back almost 10 years previously.....to that moment or show down I had with her over this swallowing a stupid pill....that "didn't hurt her"....one tiny bit?
It is hard for me to rmemeber exactly...the entire process I had to go threw ( over time in stages and with a lot of going back and forth...in and out of denial ) until I finally accepted that these issues that I have and all the struggles with trying to get control of them....were causing a lot of problems for other people...and I had to admit...that I was the one with the problem.....not everyone else in respect to my ADHD? But in the same way I witnessed with my dog Kali.....I finally volentarily opened my mouth..and took my medicine as I knew ZI needed to do? And once that happened and once I turned the corner so to speak.....I really never went back to the old "stance" I had....and I no longer could use the same rationalizations or excuses...once I was able to see it for what it is...and my part of the equation and the light bulbs...started going on in my head....which is when I stopped....doing what I had done before?
What I said recently here....if I had my wish.....was that I could be with someone who believed in me...as the first one on the list? If I look back in retrospect to my wife and I together.....what I did, without realizing this....was give to my wife...the very thing that I wanted the most. I believed she could change and my own experience told me so.....so by believing my instincts and my experience with that my self...and taking some of these lessons from my animal friends as well.....not giving up, and knowing it's a process....all I needed was the internal fortitude and courage to do it....in the face of someone trying to intimidate you out of doing so...and trying their best by any means possible...to spit that pill back out on to the floor...until I found a way to get them to swallow it volentarily..and finally give in to trying to fight me over what was actually in their best interest...as well as mine?
Just recently after another moment of where it appears darkest before Dawn? It appears the sun finally did come up...and I have to comment my wife for putting up with me...and doing so for her self...which takes courage beyond measure to do...and shows a great of amount of character in doing so? Character...and integrity....despite....being a pain in the ass and being as stubborn as a mule? Or ...a female Doberman? Take your pick? LOL
Dobermans.....Mans Best Friend?
- I Am Overwhelmed When People Are Nice to Me by: PoisonIvy 4 months 1 week ago
I had a phone conversation this morning with my investment advisor. He and his assistant have done much to help with the post-divorce paperwork. The latest thing is that I found out only last week that ex-h didn't return one of the forms and so I'm still listed as co-owner of an account and thus on the hook for related taxes. I've contacted ex-h at least a dozen times asking to talk about the matter so I can figure out how to proceed; no responses. So this morning I called the investment advisor for the second time in a week and asked if the particular form could be reissued and sent again to my ex-h. He said yes, and he also said that he would be willing to hand deliver the form and have it signed on the spot by my ex-h, the next time he's in that city, 150 miles away.
When I got off the phone, I started to cry. The combination of my general emotional fragility and being treated nicely by a person, especially by a man, brought me to tears.
Has this happened to any of you partners (or ex-partners) of people with ADHD?
- As the World Turns by: jennalemone 4 months 1 week ago
I had this conversation with a good friend yesterday.
There is a grief, a chaos, a let-down at the retirement of a once productive person. We once were parents, professionals with purpose, prestige and identities of that purpose, producers of money, of working homes for family, of guidance, of production, of beauty, of art. We find ourselves now not knowing what we want....not knowing our purpose or even our own hearts. Because we didn't want much for ourselves but we "wanted" for others. Our jobs were as caretakers of the well-being for others or for the well-being of the institution that supplied us with money. Now, it seems those others don't want us to serve in those ways anymore or we realize that there is no appreciation for what we were doing. Especially for women, a "not knowing what WE want" seems to hit us with surprise. Because our lives did not function on the road of what we wanted. We were in service to the world, to our parents and siblings, to our children, to our employers, to our clients, to our students, to our patients, to our churches, to our neighborhood.
What do I want? I don't know. I can't seem to make out a bucket list or a to do list without it being about and for others. Were we fooling ourselves in making our lives about other people? It also seems as though some women of a certain ilk that I know who I used to deem "self-centered divas" are now crowned with adoration by those people they once "governed" rather than "served". How did I have it so wrong on my "how to be" plan? I know of people who have lived their lives for themselves with strong boundaries, with strong ideas about what they want moment to moment. They seem happier than I am now...as thought they had some information about life that missed me.
I have a young diva granddaughter like this. She is a pain in the butt sometimes when she so strongly declares that she wants the yellow one not the green one....with a fight to the death will to get her way for something that is inconsequential....she just wants her way. She often gets her way just by wearing people down with belligerence. Will she be loved more than her sister who gives and works hard for the safety and comfort and well-being of others, being empathic and caring and considerate? Is that the way the world works?
I am dismayed that life rewards those who are strong willed and pushy and grabby.
Would it be wise to teach my other kind, considerate granddaughter to know what she wants and grab it, not thinking so much about those she might have to step on to get it?
Shall I be careful to not quash my strong-willed granddaughter's fiestyness for what she wants?
I am surprised how much I don't know at this age. I used to think I was smart and that I was brought up good. Young people who set themselves up as "experts" on life issues do not know how the world turns and culture and views change. The older we get the more we know we don't know for sure.
What is the lesson for me? That is what I am trying to get at. Will H be more beloved by our children than I because he has a stronger self-will and I seem to have no will at all except to serve? Was I no more than a "hired hand", a waitress, cook, cleaning lady, chafeur, teacher? While H was a character, a personable, unpredictible, aloof mystery?....a person of interest? a buddy on par with the children?
Then how does a person who was bred to serve stop it and give herself permission and take steps toward a strong-willed self? I don't know if I want that. I don't know what I want. And if a person doesn't know what they want, how do they know where to go and what to do? How does a person have passion if they don't know what they want?
- Twice Psychiatrists Told Him He Doesn't Have ADHD -- This is a Travesty! by: vvnovember 4 months 1 week ago
My husband so self un-aware, he can't accurately answer questions to get a proper diagnosis. He always answers questions in the way he would like things to be. Not how they are. I am so frustrated that he keeps "failing" the ADHD questionnaire. He's working in a different state, so I couldn't be there for his doctor's visit. I've spent years of trying to get him to see that his underemployment, financial disasters, poor emotional management, self medicating, disorganization, inattention, firings, no friends, hyperactivity--and my biggest pet peeve: interrupting me when I'm talking---all point to ADHD. I know I'm not a professional, but I have been studying ADHD for years, as my daughter and I have the inattentive type.
With no diagnosis, he thinks he's fine. We will have been married for 25 years in April, and I really don't want to throw it all away, but we are both are exasperated. We'll be taking the upcoming couples course with Melissa Orlov, and I can bet my husband will be on the other end of the phone, 3 states away, knocked out sleep...It's so depressing already.
Along with the questionnaire, he took a computer test (CPT3) this time around, and I guess he passed it. The doctor told him all he has is very mild depression. Lord, I wish she could walk in my shoes for 2 days. I guarantee she would re-evaluate her results. I've looked up the test, but I'm curious to know if anyone else was required to take the test for their diagnosis.
I really love my husband and want to make this work for a lifetime, but I am not getting any younger. So I'm putting a lot of hope in this counseling---hope that he will see himself in others, and initiate some well-needed changes. (And I'll be doing the same).
- Falling out of love by: Anonymous (not verified) 4 months 1 week ago
My SO of four years recently separated from me. After weeks of us being apart, he explained that the reason for the break up is because he thinks he is no longer in love with me. He is diagnosed ADHD but is untreated. Stress has been affecting his life and I'm afraid the added stress caused his symptoms to worsen. Reading up about how ADHD affects relationships has truly shed light on some of the issues we had in our relationship. He often told me he thought he didn't love me enough because he didn't pay attention to me even though he wanted to. Unfortunately, I am realizing how ADHD effected our relationship after we have separated. I do not think he is aware of how much ADHD has effected us. I suppose what I am ultimately looking for feedback on is whether or not individuals with ADHD tend to feel like they "fell out of love" because they don't know how to regulate their feelings. I'm also looking for opinions on how to address these issues when we are currently not in communication. Our relationship outside of the symptoms was excellent and after recognizing exactly what was going on, I am willing to work towards a healthy relationship. I am concerned about his emotional state and would like advice on healing our relationship from this point.
- Conflict Style by: jennalemone 4 months 1 week ago
I looked up conflict style on Google and took a few tests to open my awareness of my marriage conflict and the loss of our intimacy. I also plugged in my guesses for H in these online quizzes. It was eye-opening to me why our conversations are filled with chaos and our intimacy is missing. I don't feel safe even in a simple discussion with him. Here is why:
All approaches to dispute resolution in intimate relationships must proceed with a primary concern for avoiding damage to the relationship by not using words, voice tone and body language that communicates contempt, derision, dislike, non acceptance or rejectioIn. Put another way, each partner must speak within a framework that maintains emotional safety for the other at all times. This means that resolution of disputes is limited to discussion, confrontation, persuasion, negotiation and compromise. Moreover, each of these must be done using techniques of neutral language and active listening to insure that problems are vigorously attacked without people feeling attacked and that we address behavior that disturbs us without conveying rejection of the person of the character of that person. Adopting this approach does not mean that issues are ignored. To the contrary, one of the things made possible by the adoption of this strategy is that no issue is ignored and buried because of fear that to raise the issue will cause a destructive, hurtful or useless fight. By creating a strategy in which nothing gets suppressed the couple insures the long term health of the intimate relationship.....Psychology Today, Sam Margulies.
I have long known about the third entity in successful marriages....the marriage itself. The assumed agreement that, to make the marriage strong some effort and compromise must be offered and some work toward the marriage is necessary. I am accepting that I have been aware and in agreement to contributing to the health of the marriage but that H is unaware and unwilling to do anything but set up his own personal boundaries....tough guy, strong male, "no one is going to tell me what to do" guy, "Sit on it" guy.
I am just making myself realize how in most areas of life I am a compromiser/team player. I play volleyball, H plays golf. Marriage is a team sport. If you can't "give one up for the team" but rather play offense for your own glory, then......What? That is what some of us are trying to determine individually.
I've been setting H up with assists all these years to the point where he actually believes that he has played full court by himself. A team of one. There is an unawareness about him that I am just permitting myself to see and accept rather than to keep enabling him to waltz through life in a fantasy game where all his life enemies are embodied by this person (me) who has been trying to get him to work on the intimacy/safety of the relationship. His response to my attempts at a discussion with him was (with offensive posture and voice) when we were a young couple was the often repeated phrase: "I will not be married to a nag!" I backed off of these discussions because they became confrontations rather than intimate couple negotiations. I was not a nag but i would retreat in inner lack of belief in myself and the idea that I was "taking one for the team" and stuffing it. This was wrong of me. In a do-over, I would find support outside of marriage and work on my own inner strength and permission to hold strong on my dignity.