Wife has become bitter and resentful

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    • #108055

      Maybe the root to all this is my wife doesnt believe any of this is real, or maybe she refuses to accept that she married a flawed guy. I’m not sure because the whole topic is always been off limits for discussion. There was a time where I was having really bad panic attacks and anxiety. She basically saw me as weak. It seems to anger her if I dare let any of my conditions show.

      Looking back… even before all this became formal. I have always been who I always am. I do try to hide my major flaws but when I cant I am open and honest about it, or the phyical side of things just let themselves be known when I become a wiped out mess. There is never any drama, or big production. I usually just go to sleep, or go off on my own somewhere to get things all back into a managable state.

      Never to say I’m a saint… I’m no where close to it, but for a guy with ADD, who also has some pretty severe Sensory Processing Disorders (Hyperacusis, over active Olfactory system, and tactile issues that are horrible). In this mess there is also Narcolepsy w/o Cataplexy, dyslexia, and minor Tourettes…

      With all this, I still manage to live a reasonably “normal” life and I can hide/mask/fake most of it really well (most the time with and w/o meds).
      I can function basically on what the staus quo demands on most days. However, the amount of mental energy it takes for me to pull this off is unthinkable, and I often just become a recluse once I get home, or I fall sleep as soon as I feed my dog and take a shower.

      I take 2 meds.. Straterra and Modafinil (Staterra side effects increase as time goes by, so I have to take a break from it). If not I truly think I might turn into some non-flesh eating zombie. Straterra does work well, but as time goes by its like it sucks all the life out of me. I already struggle with not much energy as it is, but its the only med I havent reacted badly with. I am low dosing it, because 80mg perday wipes me out. All I want to do is sleep and I live in continous nauseousness. Also the Straterra wipes out the Modafinils effectiveness on keeping me from falling alseep in the daytime. I am considering discontinuing the Strattera. The Modafinil helps ADD stuff some, but not as good. However, with the 2 meds not sort of fighting each other it seems the Moadfinil is decent and I am alert and calm. I just have to be very careful with it. 50mg -100 mgs seems to be all my system can take. I eased up to the standard dose and I found myself not sleeping, battling massive headaches, and just sort of really cranky. When I take the break… I simply go back to my messed up unable to focus, sleepy, lost boy menatality. Its not a choice, and I’m not out of control or anything like that… but she seems to refuse to even start to care or understand. Yet, she can tell when I am off of it, without me saying a word. Thus sort of proving the meds do help, and also proving this is all very real… Which she basically claims its not real, its a choice. I wish I was kidding, but I’m not.

      I am very fortunate. I have a decent job that pays well and its structured so that I cant derail too bad most of the time. Thats never to say I dont struggle because I do, but thats just a part of my life no matter what, so I deal with it and go on.

      Going against many of the people who have ADHD/ADD… I’m an extremely quiet person. I (may write alot) but I say very little in real life. I dont have a lot of drama, it only makes things much worse. I try very hard not to create any problems because I suck at confrontation. When I get upset I literally cant think, and its like a cat5 hurricane raging inside my head. When I am upset I mostly expose every weakness I have and that crushes me. So I try to very hard to stay calm and as positive as possible.

      I have always been the way I am. I had tried to improve my life and situation in many ways including theropy. I face my problems. I never use my condition as a crutch, or an excuse. In many ways I am grateful that I at least got his chance to live this life. It nearly didn’t happen. I was blessed with being a decent looking guy, just with a tangled mess of nervous dysfuntion inside. Its just the hand I was dealt in life and thats how it goes.

      I do have the horrible habit of starting something and getting lost, distracted, or dis-interested, and then starting something else… This is probably my worst trait by far, but I am trying to no longer start anything else until I finish what I have already started. This is about like saying I will never cuss again while using ever cuss word to state that I will never do that again. Its very difficult for me, but I am trying.

      I am loyal to a fault, and I simply seldom truly “give up” on anything… Even though I may derail and seem as if I have left it, its only temporary when I do this. I always find a way to finish what I started… There is just some long pauses of action being taken at times.

      Overtime… (nearly 20 years), it seems my wife has had it with me. She has made recent very ovbvious changes. She has became more and more distant. She often leaves and never says goodbye, or even where she might be going. I’m not even sure if she isnt seeing someone else. I try to not go there mentally, but the questions often have no answers. If she is seeing somone I wish they would be honest about it, but so far its just another mystery that makes me wonder. She’s become deeply angry toward me, even making some really harsh statements about regreting marrying me, and even telling me she hates me. I dont think it take a rocket scientist to figure out that she wants out… But she wont make the leap (and she knows she is free to do so without any problems from me). I am not a person who feels ANYONE should ever be held hostage by another person, or some promise made in the past. We are human. We do change, times change, people grow apart, or find they are incompatable. It makes me sad, but its also part of life and I accept things where others often do not.

      I’m a screwed up guy… but I’m a kind guy. I told her she is free to go if she is unhappy, because I do understand how much it sucks to deal with me. I have to live it 24/7 and mostly keep everything a secret (not my choice). I’m not allowed to discuss my condition. She says it makes me look more stupid than I alreay am.

      I mostly just blow the hateful stuff off… I’m not stupid, and I dont act stupid. I am often a big kid living in a grown up body and I can find pleasure in simple things, but stupid is simply not who I am, or who I have ever been. I’m actually really intellegent and I was given lots of common sense to figure out stuff a lot of normal people cant seem to even grasp… That is, if I can stay focused on whatever it is long enough to fix it.

      Anyway, I think she may be about to leave for good… Its like this has just been ramping up more and more lately. I dont blame her, but yet she has never remotely cared anyway… She was the one who demanded I find out what was wrong and fix it. I (we) already knew, I have had ALL this stuff since I was a kid. For me its not a super mystery. There were horrible complications at my time to come into this life. My mom and myself nearly didnt make it. I wasnt expected to make it, but I did. This stuff showed up and I was a hell child for a while with mosre issues than people could stand.

      Later I was abandonded (my mom took off). I was sort of tossed around with family members and stuff, but it could have been much worse. In that, none of my issues were ever addressed (other than lots of griping from teachers who called me lazy, stupid, etc). I was a pain in the butt. I get that, but once I got a grasp on things I started handling things a lot better, only to fall asleep and then get in trouble for that. But, it is what it is…

      So, I did as my wife demanded… I asked my doctor what to do, and he refered me, and all this stuff comes out as true… Honestly, I think it made her hate me worse. Its like a switch flipped inside her. She was determined I was “making this stuff up” or there was some magic fix that would make me this person she ahs always demaned that I be… Well, there is no fix, no magic pill, and NO it will not just go away someday. I think that sunk in, and sunk what we are calling a marriage. Good God in Heaven why would anyone want to pretend they have this stuff? I would give it away in a split second if I had that choice…

      People say that people with ADHD/ADD can be self centered, rude, even narcasistic, and yes I guess anyone can be… But wow whats the excuse for the so called normal person who arrogently claims they have no issues, who crushes those eho have real issues???…

      We all have issues. I dont even mind being open about my issues, but its not allowed in most cases. Its not that I am in any way proud of what I have…
      Its simply a fact, it is a part of who I am, and I yet I have to hide it like I am a leper, or the spawn of the devil or something.
      It is what it is, and I have no issues facing any truth about myself. I may not like it, but its a road map of where I am, and where I might can go, or at least try. I dont see many normal people trying to do much of anything in life, maybe other than complaining about how bad they have it… (when they have no idea of how good they have it)

      I wake up everyday knowing I have to work at life 10 times harder than most, to get half of the life they get to expereince and you know what? I am grateful for it. LIFE doesnt owe me a free ride, it doesnt owe me anything. So what if I have to struggle, it beats sitting around whining about how bad stuff is. I have never let all this crap in my life rule me. Yes, at times it tries, and it rips me to shreds, but I piece it all back together and try again because there is no magic land where this isnt a part of my life, in this life. I dont see many “normal” people caring as much about life.

      Maybe in some really twisted way, this is all a blessing, and not near the curse it seems at times. Maybe I wasnt supposed to fit in with the world so I could live in ways the world cant even grasp. Who knows? I only know to live and not try and find fault with every single thing I look at (including people). Heres why…
      All I need to do is look in any mirror and I can find all the faults I could ever hate. I used to hate myself. I quit doing that and my life changed. I used to hate people for abandoning me, I forgave them, I forgave all of it, and I forgave myself. I freed myself from this hate stuff a long time back and it was the best thing I have ever done so far.

      I dont even know why I wrote this… other than maybe to help get some of weight off of me… also maybe to see if there are other ADD people out there dealing with a deeply angry resentful spouses.

      I truly dont want her to leave. Yet in all honesty it might be the best because this is becoming a solid struggle of her always angry, screaming, and slamming stuff around, which at times is like somone stabbing me in the ears with an icepick (Hyperacusis sucks).

      I love her enough that I do want her to be truly happy, but she has never been happy since day one. She lives in this land of MORE MORE MORE and more is never enough, and I am sort of a minimalist by default. I dont need a lot. I do have nice stuff but I try not to clutter my life with tons of added junk to care for because I have a track record of not being able to keep up with lots of things all at one time…

      I often pray she will find some level of happinness. No person should ever live truly unhappy or be the root to another persons happiness.
      It imprisons the other person, but she never sees it that way.
      I dont think she could find happy if it ran over her (and that makes me sad for her), but at the same time I cant fix her.
      Some people seem to get so bitter that they feed off of it, and I think I am the meal most of the time, that probably needs to stop at some point.

      Thanks for taking the time to decipher my messed up intellect, and odd way of describing things…


    • #108366
      Penny Williams

      Hi Chance!

      What you describe sounds like emotional abuse at this point. You shouldn’t have to live with someone who constantly puts you down and treats you very poorly.

      You sound like a positive person who’s happy with a simple life. Take a moment to imagine life without your wife. Do you think you’d feel better about yourself? Do you think you could be happy? Do you think life would feel a little easier? You have to draw your own conclusions, of course, but thinking about a different life can help you reach a decision.

      I normally tell people that a relationship with an ADHD spouse isn’t doomed automatically. It just takes a different perspective and approach. It won’t be a “traditional” marriage. But that assumes that both parties treat each other with respect most of the time.

      ADDitude Community Moderator, Parenting ADHD Trainer & Author, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

    • #109880

      Man I totally understand. I’m going through a similar situation. I struggle with ptsd from childhood traumas and my military service. I just got diagnosed last year with adhd. I think the diagnosis was worse than the ailment. Heck im 61 years old. I love my wife with all my heart but she has absolutes that rule what she is willing to deal with. Marijuana is out even though it’s the best meds I’ve found yet to help me. Yeah it’s illegal but taking a bunch of chemicals so my wife won’t have to remind me about stuff is a little)&@#ing heavy handed. I adore her but it’s her way or the hey. I’m severely depressed.

    • #114122


      Because of the two statements below from your post, do you think maybe you should consider leaving, instead of waiting to be left?

      “I’m not allowed to discuss my condition. She says it makes me look more stupid than I already am.”

      At the very least, maybe you both could seek counseling from a marriage/couples therapist with experience with ADHD. If her resentment has reached a point where she is emotionally abusing you (see the quote from your post above), maybe there’s no coming back. Couples counseling can help either way: It can help repair and rebuild, or it can help you separate respectfully with minimal damage.

      Wishing you the best,

    • #176604

      This post saddens me.

      There really are two sides to every story.

      In marriages between a person with ADHD and a “Non” ,there is a disconnect. Even when the ADHD partner says they are trying their best, the Non may not see it.

      It sounds like you take responsibility for your actions and your ADHD.

      Have you gone to marriage counseling? Have you both read The ADHD Effect on Marriage?

    • #177156

      Hi Chance,

      I clicked on this post as a sometimes resentful wife, with the hope I might get some new ideas about how we can work towards a happier home. But I have to say you have reduced me to tears.

      The idea that anyone could not “let you” talk about your feelings, your life, and your condition really saddens me. Perhaps buying the book “the adhd effect on marriage” for your wife to read might help? Perhaps she only wants to point fingers, blame and not change or adapt?

      As a partner of someone with adhd I see his struggles every day, and it breaks my heart. I spend alot of time figuring out ways we can make our home more adhd friendly, how we can not let adhd be a disability but instead be used to his advantage. It can be a wonderful gift!

      I get it, adhd can be really hard alot of the time. I find it hard, but no one finds it harder than the person with adhd. No I am sure adhd does not define who you are, but ignoring it all together and pretending it doesn’t exist is a disservice to you.

      You do not deserve to have a part of you banished. I am so sorry you have been through this and I hope maybe if you wife could do some more research or maybe even see couples therapist together she might get to see your side?


    • #177367

      I agree that the ADHD effect on marriage is a good book for your wife and for you to read.

      The website of the same name has provided me with a lot of support. My fiance has ADHD I do not.

      You will find on the website that the spouses who have become angry were not angry in the beginning.
      They have allowed themselves to become that way because their spouse is either in denial that they have ADHD or they refuse to treat the condition.
      Those who are angry are tired of hearing their spouse tell them that they are going to change that things are going to get better and they don’t. They are frustrated, exhausted, mentally, physically and emotionally from shouldering 95% of the responsibilities. They thought that when they got married it would be a partnership, and feel like they got the old “bait and switch” once the hyperfocus wore off. They want actions, not words.

      • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by AdeleS546.
      • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by AdeleS546.
      • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by AdeleS546.
    • #177516

      Hi Chance.
      I think marriage is worth fighting for. As bad as it seems, it sounds like there is hope. Speaking from experience, I’d say you’re never going to recovery from where you are now (in your relationship) without help. I would highly recommend discussing seeing a counselor/psychologist together (preferably someone with relevant experience). If your wife is not keen, book the appointment, tell her when and where it is, that you are going and you would love for her to be there too. Even if she doesn’t go, you go. Repeat, as necessary. You will benefit from the session, and hopefully she will see your commitment and join you.

      An article that I found very insightful re: the impact of ADHD on both parties in a marriage is: https://www.helpguide.org/articles/add-adhd/adult-adhd-attention-deficit-disorder-and-relationships.htm

      My wife and I were in a similar, terrible and painful place. Fortunately she agreed to see someone with me. It transformed our marriage. No guarantees, of course, but if the efforts pay off, the reward is well worth the work.


    • #178592
      It’s A New Day


      I want to thank you for sharing the helpguide article(link). Recently diagnosed at 57, I have been been looking for the perfect, all inclusive article just like this to share with my wife of 32 years. It helps to explain the struggles and pain we have been experiencing for many years now. I am seeing a therapist for my ADHD which is helping me to understand who I am and provide me with the tools to manage my newly discovered self. One of which has been ADDitudemag.com. It has explained so much for me.
      Before I start to ramble on, I want to thank you again for the information

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