March 18, 2011 at 4:58 am #89329
MelissaTexMemberMarch 18, 2011 at 4:58 amPost count: 14
It has been a few months since we found this website and board.
He has read at least three books.
I – personally – have gotten his meds adjusted [no thanks to the V.A., which only prescribes Ritalin, which is of no help to him].
We’ve had one session with an ADD therapist.
And, yet, I am still the Evil Witch Who Is Hyper-Critical, Out-To-Get-Him, and the Main-Thing-Keeping-Him-From-Enjoying-His-Life.
Nevermind that he tried to hang curtains in my room yesterday and drilled holes in my wall one inch lower on one side than the other.
Nevermind that he installed the curtain hold-back BACKWARDS.
Nevermind that he left the room covered in sheetrock dust.
Nevermind that he dashed out of the house on Sunday with a full glass of iced tea on the counter, the cats out of food, left the gate in the driveway wide open. . . and only thought to tell anyone where he was going until he’d been there for over an hour. . . and never bothered to take care of two other *very important* chores that day. He just hightailed it for FUN, the first chance he got.
And then the next day posted to a different ADD support board about what an evil, controlling, hyper-critical witch I am for expecting him to take care of *two* very easy things that day, when “an opportunity presented itself” for him to go have fun.
So. . .
What books has anyone read. . . what counselors has anyone talked to. . . what mental gymnastics has anyone performed that allow them to see their spouse for the truly mentally incompetent person they are – – – instead of fantasizing or assuming that someday they’ll become an adult who is responsible for their own feelings, their own reality, and their own behavior?
Because, that ain’t happening in my situation. I need to just find a way to deal with the fact that even though I am 44 and have never wanted children, I damn sure have one now. . . and he is severely mentally handicapped. [*Please* don’t tell me I am being extreme based on these meager examples. I have hundreds more. Even ones where I have said something to him that was only an observation – but not a 100%, pom-pom-laden, cheerleading endorsement of the last 5 minutes of his existence – and he has quite literally said, “My brain wants to twist what you just said into X,” — where “X” is, “You rotten b**ch of a woman, how come you always criticize me? How come *YOU* aren’t perfect? Because unless you are perfect then you have no right to speak to me in any manner other than 100% praise and worship. And, oh yeah, ignore my porn addiction.”]
Also, I am unemployed and just had to borrow $2000 from my mother (who lives with me and my ADDer) to keep the bank from foreclosing on me. She wants her money back ASAP, so much so that’s she has suggested forgoing her monthly “rent” payment of $300 for the next 6+ months until she is paid back. My ADDer works – sort of – at his own residential window cleaning business, but he puts in about 3 hours a day, a couple days a week. Nevertheless, I need his meager support to keep my house; so *please do not* suggest that I boot him to the curb and get on with my life.
What I need is a counselor, a book, or a personal story that will help me deal with my ADDer on his own terms and not my expectations. He is mentally incapacitated and I need a usable, working set of tools for my every waking moment to not only remind me of that but to help me deal with him accordingly. I understand that it is not fair for me to expect him to ever function as a responsible, caring, non-narcissistic adult. . . I just don’t know how to get it to stop hurting when he behaves – constantly, incessantly, aggressively – like a self-centered 3 year old; nor how to shut my mouth when the pain becomes too intense. Because, of course, expressing ANY negative emotion is not allowed. It leads to either immediate or sideways retribution. He told me – – HE ACTUALLY TOLD ME – – that he is “OK” with me pointing out a mistake he has made but, “When you say that stuff about how mad you are or how you think I’m irresponsible. . . well, then you lose me and I get angry.” WOW. What great insight. I think every frickin person alive would LOVE to make mistakes and abuse people AND NEVER HAVE TO HEAR ABOUT IT. Wouldn’t it be great if people only ever said to you, “You missed a spot,” NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES YOU HAD MISSED THAT SAME SPOT — OR HOW MANY TIMES SOMEONE ELSE HAS CLEANED THAT SPOT AND YOU THEN IMMEDIATELY CRAPPED ON IT????
By golly, I’d LOVE to live in that world! I’d love to screw up and piss on people repeatedly and NEVER have to hear about how I might have let them down, disappointed them, hurt their feelings, or caused unneccessary hardship in their lives. Heck, YEAH! How do *I* get on THAT gravy train????
Please – someone – help me deal with this until I can pay the bills on my own. I need practical, implementable, repeatable, solutions for dealing with the emotional side of this. I have realized that I have existed for the last several years only to prop him up, and not to live my own life. I haven’t been a doormat and a punching bag all of my life, and I don’t plan on staying one. I just need to know how to put this in perspective, and to stop thinking of him as a willful abuser.REPORT ABUSEMarch 18, 2011 at 11:55 am #102275
nellieMemberMarch 18, 2011 at 11:55 amPost count: 596
Here are two I’ve heard of but not read, both available from Amazon:
The ADHD Effect on Marriage: Understand and Rebuild Your Relationship in Six Steps by Melissa Orlov (Paperback – Sept. 1, 2010). i heard her interviewed on the radio and it sounds interesting. If I remember she wrote this from personal experience.
Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? Stopping the Roller Coaster When Someone You Love Has Attention Deficit Disorder by Gina Pera and Russell Barkley (Paperback – Aug. 31, 2008)
Hope you find them helpful. Have you watched the ADD and loving it DVD yet? You might want to watch it together.
Also your anger and resentment for being the “responsible one” is very normal but something you need to deal with in order for your relationship to survive.
Good luck in your journey, hope you find some help in the books.REPORT ABUSEMarch 18, 2011 at 1:29 pm #102276
AnonymousInactiveMarch 18, 2011 at 1:29 pmPost count: 14413
His behavior kind of reminds me of my nephew, who has a mild case of Asperger’s Syndrome. Could this be one of his co-morbidities?REPORT ABUSEMarch 18, 2011 at 2:14 pm #102277
Curlymoe115MemberMarch 18, 2011 at 2:14 pmPost count: 206
MelissaTex it is time to remind yourself that it is not you it is him. When his is calling you names it is because he now sees you as the disciplining parent who is catching him in the wrong. You can either continue to take this seriously or just let him rant and walk away. He can scream but just like disciplining a two year old you can step over his flailing body and get on with your life. From your letter two months ago you said that he has a number of strong addictions and he goes to counselors and such only to hear them pat him on the back and tell him he is doing the right thing. Stop being a reinforcer for this ego trip he is on.
Hopefully in the meantime you are pursuing employment counseling and looking at freeing yourself from this growth that is growing on you. You and mom need to come to an agreement for paying back the money and if mom can afford more rent then maybe she could pay more every month. Also if he is not cleaning windows 3 or 4 days a week maybe you can take over and help make the business more thriving while you look for something else. Maybe even look at expanding this into other areas so that you can get an income out of this as well. And when you do split up you could end up with half the business because of your contributions to it.REPORT ABUSEMarch 18, 2011 at 5:50 pm #102278
AnonymousInactiveMarch 18, 2011 at 5:50 pmPost count: 14413
Wow MT it sounds like you have a lot of anguish in your life…… You appear very unhappy with your partner and/or your partners behavior. I understand that your examples are but a few there are probably too many tool list….and you have a whole cataloque of of behavior that you find intolerable but, here are a few things that I understand that may help…..I don’t know.
Changing ourselves and by that I mean real lasting deep belief and perceptual change change is very very difficult and requires a person’s deepest commitment and very likely a great guide or counselor to help one through it. To just initiate deep change on one’s own is kind of…. magical thinking and not likely to happen. Old tapes play the loudest, they are familiar no matter how disfunctional they may be and… we tend to listen to them and use them as our behavioral guides. So without deep commitment from within and likely more than a few years of counseling real change will not come about…. that and the desire to take that long long difficult internal journey. Nothing happens quickly….
This is another truth (for me)….first we need to understand how very hard it is to change ones own behavior, the effort and commitment it takes, and the consistent desire and years it takes to enable that change…………then ask … what then are the chances of changing another? Next to none I would suggest. This particularly true if the other person has no interest in changing.
These are things I have discovered in my life and through my journey….please, I don’t profess to know your life or your partners life this is just what I understand to be true in my world. So having said that I can only share a few things that worked in my life…for me.
I spent quite a few years in counseling. I went to see a counselor because my partner was driving me crazy….it was intolerable, I felt my life was a mess and out of control. Well I stayed for me!!! If I was unhappy and discontent then I needed to work on me and my life, for the simple reasons I stated above. I can only work on my happiness and my behavior, how I interpret things, how I process things, how I react, what I believe a my core…..all of those pieces, that how real change is initiated. When my counselor told me these truths, I was angry!!! Damn it!!! I was really angry!!! I told my counselor….she (my partner) is the cause of all my problems and you say it’s me who needs counseling and needs to change……really??? Yes…. he said, with a smile.
Why??? Because I am the only person responsible for my own happiness. I am the only one responsible for my own perceptions and beliefs. It is not about blame, or being right, or who does what to who. It is about me, what I believe, how I perceive my world and others in it. It is about my heart, and what is missing in my life, and why I’m so resentful of all that. I can change me and my life with a hell of a lot of work…but not another’s. If I attempt to do that is controlling and manipulative….not a love story. If I pretend to change to change another, same story is true, it’s controlling and manipulation, not love and acceptance of another.
Oh….my life did change and my partner seemed after time to be different too. My behavior changes seemed to break our old patterns and slowly things seemed better……and better. I’m sixty….still have my life partner after 37 years. Things are not perfect I’m not looking for that. I’m happy, very pleased with my life….no regrets. You know….without the turmoil of the past I would not have been driven to make the life altering changes I did. It was the hardest thing I have ever done without question….it took years and it is ongoing, still, today. Awareness and living the aware life is the most rewarding thing in the world (for me).
It is so hard to try and put this down in a post…… I’m sure I’m failing at it miserably…… and please… this is my life remember… I don’t know what will work for you??? I wish you well….
toofatREPORT ABUSEMarch 18, 2011 at 8:39 pm #102279
WgreenParticipantMarch 18, 2011 at 8:39 pmPost count: 445
Where I’m from, they throw you in jail for giving medical advice if you don’t have an M.D. after your name. They throw you in jail if you offer legal advice without being admitted to the bar. So, since I’m not a psychiatrist or neurologist or certified ADDologist, I’ll play it safe and not offer any advice about a relationship with an ADD partner. Still, I’ve been told by a former spouse that it’s hell a lot of the time.
Can one of the moderators with the proper credentials offer poor Melissa some advice here? Or would that be unprofessional? Or Illegal?
(One last thing Mel. If your spouse actually has managed to read THREE books, as you say, some of us would wonder whether ADD is the correct diagnosis…)REPORT ABUSEMarch 18, 2011 at 9:52 pm #102280
AnonymousInactiveMarch 18, 2011 at 9:52 pmPost count: 14413
I read 20 books a month and I have ADHD……………. ohhh you meant inside the book I thought you meant front and rear covers..Who has time to read the inside stuff as I think I know almost everything already…and anything else i’ll just wing it…REPORT ABUSEMarch 22, 2011 at 1:20 pm #102281
AnonymousInactiveMarch 22, 2011 at 1:20 pmPost count: 14413
Got to start by changing you. There is a whole lot of pain and suffering in that email, all those things he’s done, does, he must be an awful man. For someone so altruistic to have tolerated this you should be held on high and celebrated. It takes two honey.
Could you have asked some questions, in a calm constructive way, to find out why things fell apart the other day? Did you assume you understood his intensions or did you ask the right question to find out? It’s very likely that there were reasons, very valid to him for what happened, but getting him to see that and feel okay about telling you should be the goal. Understanding is important and it goes both ways. Good luck.REPORT ABUSEMarch 22, 2011 at 3:17 pm #102282
AnonymousInactiveMarch 22, 2011 at 3:17 pmPost count: 14413
I only read part of your post but i am a ADDer who understands where your husband is coming from. I know for me my husband is a huge help when it comes to household chores.
I have alot of anger with my self when i do not do the things i should do as a mother and wife. I sometimes lash out at my husband because i can not mentally do the small tasks it seems so easy for everyone else to do. For me the anger is the struggle within my self that i want to do better. Sometimes i do well for a week or two, but i always fall back into inconsistency and unpredictablity.
I dont know if this helps at all but maybe understanding yourself first, than your husband might be a good start. Im not saying that you do not know who you are but talk to someone because it sounds like you maybe just as hurt and confused by the situation as he is.REPORT ABUSEMarch 22, 2011 at 3:37 pm #102283
HansMemberMarch 22, 2011 at 3:37 pmPost count: 51
I have read your post and I would like to offer some observations based on my self having ADHD and taking extended release medication
I too had many of the systems you have described. Leaving jobs have finished–sloppy work- not wanting to do things, procrastination. etc
It appeats to me your husband has very active mental channel flipping and is fustrated by his inablities . Rushing jobs just to get them done….I have been there… I could not start a job if things wre not perfect to begin with. When I ran into a problem..I got fustrated and dropped it…undone.
ADHD medications wear off over time- I take my medication in the morning. It starts to take effect- and then starts to wear off.
I try to do things when the medications are active. I focus and see the clutter. I know I have to clean up and I do it.
My medications give me energy, the desire to do things correctly. and the ability to evaluate alternatives.
My medications relieves my stress and anxiety it stop my impulse to speak or lash out…
I wonder if your husband is taking the medicine or the correct dosage.
Different medications have different release rates. Some act instantly some take time and others are a combination of the two
One forum member explained how she varied the medications/dosages durring the day to handle each days tasks and objectives.
I am concerned about your husbands lack of cooperation. His internal anxiety and stress might be far greater. He might. be at his mental limit. and has partly shut down/blocked any comments as a self defense mechanism.–
Your post suggests he might also have some psycological scar issues from early childhood. He might need more counseling with a professional.
PLEASE REMEMBER.. ADHD medication is not a cure. It helps for a limited amount of time and everyone is different
The dossage should be correct and the way it is administered. There is Instant acting to get started-timed release to keep going durring the day…
Best of luck….REPORT ABUSEMarch 22, 2011 at 11:55 pm #102284
AnonymousInactiveMarch 22, 2011 at 11:55 pmPost count: 14413
I borrowed the book ADHD and its Effects on Marriage from our local library, and that’s what got me started investigating this wholeheartedly. My husband has ADHD but doesn’t take his meds. I did the online test here, and it seems I have it too, big-time.
The book was revealing to me, it explained why the usual reactions don’t work (I have to get really angry to get him to do anything around the house). There are a lot of real-life examples in the book and many of them resonated with me. So I realized that doing the same old things would only result in the same old problems and that I had to start to deal with both of our situations.
The author says that it’s important to get the medication sorted out first. But that’s not the only part of the solution, that the meds and behaviour go together. So for my husband and I, we had to get agreement about what the problems were, how it felt for each of us, and what we were going to do about it going forward. The decision was to do a one-week trial where he takes his meds (and I’m doing a trial taking his too) and see how we fare after a week.
The first step for us was talking about it. The book would be useful in helping you understand why he says and does the things he does, and what doesn’t work in an ADHD/non-ADHD relationship.
I haven’t finished the book yet, only halfway through, but I can say it’s probably the most important book I have read at a critical point in my life when my symptoms are starting to get a lot worse.
It also helps for us that we are both seeing a psychologist (for meditation/therapy) and are working on our patterns. As far as I can tell, there’s never one side to a problem, we both contribute, although it takes effort to see that and even more effort to work through it.REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 2:46 pm #102285
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 2:46 pmPost count: 14413
The book Difficult Conversations helped me so much. It provided me with better ways to discuss things so there don’t come across the wrong way, and the importance of giving up on the whole I’m Right or Wrong thing.
It is also important to remember that unless you see the changes you need to make he can’t make the changes he needs to make.
Good luckREPORT ABUSEApril 8, 2011 at 1:38 pm #102286
AnonymousInactiveApril 8, 2011 at 1:38 pmPost count: 14413
After reading the ADHD and its Effects on Marriage book, I read Attention Deficit Disorder in Adults by Lynn Weiss. It has a good chapter on “living with an ADD person” , as well as chapters on what the ADD person feels, chapters for family & friends, etc. as well as lots of diagnosis questions. There was also a section called The Three Faces of ADD which was helpful to me – I am a combination of the first and third “faces” while my ADD husband is completely different as a two. We both have similar problems with ADHD/ADD, but this helped me understand why he is so quiet and depressed at times and why I am so off the wall and super high energy!REPORT ABUSE
How To Accept This As a Severe Mental Disorder (in an adult)?MelissaTex2011-03-18T04:58:34+00:00
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