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Re: How to succeed in a marriage when one spouse has ADD

Re: How to succeed in a marriage when one spouse has ADD2011-01-13T16:02:48+00:00

The Forums Forums For The Non-ADD I Married An ADDer How to succeed in a marriage when one spouse has ADD Re: How to succeed in a marriage when one spouse has ADD


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My partner has ADD. Diagnosed off the charts. Medication finally looking like the right one. Drinking and bad habits, for the most part, curbed. Admittedly, we are dealing with an inordinate amount of crap in our respective lives. But that said….

…for me, everything feels like a struggle…the morning coffee, a simple conversation, he beats himself up for wasting another day, he’s angry at _______ – insert any number of people daily, he didn’t sleep well, the money issues we have (and that in itself is a novel…his bankruptcy and my own issues with my ex! Sociopath and dangerous, with loads of money to keep me hung up in the courts as a sport for him! And I’m supporting most of this household on a tiny income with my child to think about first)

Yup, the writing was on the wall with this guy. He was not a safe choice in many ways. I thought I could handle him because frankly, I border on ADD myself and am a driven, highly creative, juggle many things kind of artist and business woman. Normal people usually don’t get me, bore me, dont’ support my wacky and shoot for the moon ideas. And my history with my ex and the child we have is enormous and a burden for a lot of folks. I’m a lot to handle….mostly good. I’m nailed down with routine, I am dynamic and positive and usually very happy and laughing a lot. Not anymore.

So why am I here? On days like today, I can honestly say “it’s not worth it”. This ADD stuff makes him a challenge to simply breathe beside. What seemed initially attractive about me to him is now a source of criticism from him.

On other days, when I see how much he has repaired my daughter’s faith and spirit, I know why I bother. They have a huge connection so I know ending this will break her heart and she’s just started to get her feet again. He’s been living with us for over 2 years now. It feels like a decade for me! I’ve aged and I’m not being supported emotionally and he’s fleeting in his attention spans to the point of feeling like it’s “catch me when you can” for comfort. Yet, he was only recently diagnosed, is having some success changing his patterns and loves me a lot.

But what can I do for me? His moodiness, his lashing out, his harmful quips and most of all, his inability (though he’s been hugely financially successful before) to make a living. My situation is nothing short of dire straits because of my ex of course, but day to day, now because of my partner! On good days, it’s great. On bad days, it’s hell. And the roller coaster with his moods and lack of reliability make it feel like I can’t trust the good stuff anymore because it’s so short lived. He’s on meds that seem to make a bit of difference for his focus and that’s when he remembers to take them. He’s been given a ton of vitamins and supplements by me to complement his meds – all doctor approved ( my hobby is health stuff) and he’s curbed his drinking considerably to the point of 4 -6 drinks a week now…it used to be that and then some a day! Between ADD and drinking and bad business relationships, the inevitable happened – bankruptcy.

So, I know the only thing I can change is me. I focus on my child and my work and getting out of the mess created by my ex and moving on, staying positive, seeing friends, exercising, eating well, meditation. But this guy is just such a diva….he permeates everything I do and am about. And I’m a very strong woman!!! I can’t get the good stuff out of him without feeling like it’s a root canal and he doesn’t step up to the plate with many ideas for how to handle our issues. I’m fixing things and wondering why I waste my time. He’s not fixing things with me and does not communicate virtually anything….ideas, hopes, dreams, jokes….it doesn’t take a genius to figure out he’s depressed.

So how do I deal with him? Let’s say we’re out for the day in my car doing errands or trying to enjoy a weekend alone and he’s surly and I’m stuck with him? What am I supposed to do that I feel I haven’t already tried?

Silent treatment? He’ll give it back to me for days on end.

Ask him calmly and nicely to please treat me with respect? He won’t change his mood and he’ll justify it and then what?

Throw him out of the car so I can have some peace?

I wonder how much of this is ADD and how much of this is that he’s just not a nice person at the end of the day, you know?

What about when he leaves the stove burners on? When all the lights and the fan and the space heater and the dryer – with nothing in it – are left on, and I’m paying the bills?

What about when he starts criticizing my daughter and I stop him and he gives me a fight for an hour before finally admitting his mistakes. Then two days later, I hear about how I undermine him ‘all the time’ because I told him to stop that behaviour in front of her. (This happens with so many other things and so often, I can’t always be delicate and finding private times and places in which to discuss these issues…Iv’e taken to calling him on stuff in the moment)

Does ANYONE have any suggestions for me? I can’t change him so I need to change my ways of being with him, all the while protect my child and myself from what is sometimes really negative stuff.