Wednesday, May 31, 2017

That was a short ride

I think my head just exploded... but again I'm not really surprised.

So surprisingly my partner has accepted this whole ADHD thing and has even picked up a few books on his own. Yay! He wouldn't touch the two books I had read however that were sitting there within access to him in our apartment... he had to go off and get some that weren't tainted by me I guess.

He also called this psychologist we tracked down and spent two weeks trying to actually talk to somebody. They don't take insurance so we needed to find out what the deal was with them. Let's just say it's expensive. Somehow in my understanding of his brain I figured this was the perfect route for him even with the cost. The guy is top of his industry with all the toys and tools and IS expensive - just what my partner looks for in a way out of his addiction. I figured he'd get the analysis, sit down with a real brain dr. and get a personalized treatment plan just for him with someone who could quantitatively monitor his progress with real science. Not only that but he'd get the hand to hold to help keep him on track to keeping up with treatments so he'd actually succeed for once. We would be moving forward for a change. Stupid me for seeing that benefit, right?

So in our conversation the other night I asked him what he was thinking of doing. He said basically that he'd found a book (caution ahead) that was all about natural remedies (major warning bells) and that he'd rather take all the money he'd spend on the diagnosis and real treatment with this dr. and just start taking these supplements, natural extracts, oils etc and changing his diet (just kill me now). He asked me if I cared if there was an official diagnosis. Frankly I don't care about a diagnosis. They can find out he's the reincarnated Queen of Sheba as long as he accepts he has a problem that according to all the documentation is fixable and gets some help for it because neither of us can continue on this way.

However, without a diagnosis and a coach to get him healthy and monitor him, we all know he's not going anywhere. Not only that but it means he is still fighting tooth and nail against any real medication they could possibly provide him to get him past this issue without getting all the facts about it because of the damn FFA and the belief he will somehow get to fly again some day. He told me flat out he won't take any real drugs.

So I parked that sinking feeling I had in my stomach just in case I wasn't understanding him right and I asked about the book that he's been reading that has him convinced that he's going to get better eating more oranges and chewing grape seeds. (look out more dental bills).  

He's been reading one by a therapist who is very well known and respected for his marriage/relationship repair books, but has recently (like in the last two years) ventured into the ADHD world as he claims to have 'cured' his own ADHD with vitamins and supplements and then wrote a book about how everyone out there can benefit from his discovery. Read: another individual making money off of his 'credible source' celebrity status and personal unscientifically proven story of 'healing' using homeopathic remedies that will of course work for everyone everywhere instantly - and if they don't you weren't using them right.... right.

Same quack MO for my partner, different day. AAARRRGGGGGG!!!! We just got kicked back to freaking square one.

I sat there at that point completely broken and just turned everything back onto him. What did he want to do. How did he want to proceed. What did he think was best. I'm done. I've given up. Years from now we're still going to be stuck in this exact same place with him. He just refuses to see the pattern.

Of course he also throws in there that he wants to do the diet not the Dr. but he wants me to do it with him. He say's he cares for my health. He says he wants me to experience the benefits as well. He thinks it would help me too. Sigh. No. Him actually staying faithful in our marriage is the only thing that will improve my life at this point. He just wants a hand to hold so that he can actually make it more than 3 days on the 'diet'. He want's me to be ok with paying double the cost for all these supplements he taking along with me while my kids give up extracurriculars and we cut vacations to pay for it all. We're already paying through the nose just for his monthly therapy and alternate addictions.

At that point I kindly but firmly told him I wasn't going to be there to be his coach, mother or wife in this. We have no real relationship. Any good will I felt toward him in helping him while sacrificing anything of myself or my means of helping my kids for him was mortally crushed years ago and took it's final death gasp with this last round of acting out and stupidity. He finally managed to crush the unicorn I had for him. I honestly didn't think it was possible but he did it. I've been in survival mode for so long it's become normal.

I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to getting away from him in a couple of weeks. 5 weeks I know won't be long enough but at least it will be something.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


'Sorry' - Poem by Ntozake Shange

one thing i don't need 
is any more apologies 
i got sorry greetin me at my front door 
you can keep yrs 
i don't know what to do wit em 
they dont open doors 
or bring the sun back 
they dont make me happy 
or get a mornin paper 
didnt nobody stop usin my tears to wash cars 
cuz a sorry

i am simply tired 
of collectin 
i didnt know 
i was so important toyou 
i'm gonna haveta throw some away 
i cant get to the clothes in my closet 
for alla the sorries 
i'm gonna tack a sign to my door 
leave a message by the phone 
'if you called 
to say yr sorry 
call somebody else 
i dont use em anymore' 

i let sorry/ didnt meanta/ & how cd i know abt that 
take a walk down a dark & musty street in brooklyn 
i'm gonna do exactly what i want to 
& i wont be sorry for none of it 
letta sorry soothe yr soul/ i'm gonna soothe mine

you were always inconsistent 
doin somethin & then bein sorry 
beatin my heart to death 
talkin bout you sorry 

i will not call 
i'm not goin to be nice 
i will raise my voice 
& scream & holler 
& break things & race the engine 
& tell all yr secrets bout yrself to yr face 
& i will list in detail everyone of my wonderful lovers 
& their ways 
i will play oliver lake 
& i wont be sorry for none of it

i loved you on purpose 
i was open on purpose 
i still crave vulnerability & close talk 
& i'm not even sorry bout you bein sorry 
you can carry all the guilt & grime ya wanna 
just dont give it to me 
i cant use another sorry
next time 
you should admit 
you're mean/ low-down/ triflin/ & no count straight out 
steada bein sorry alla the time 
enjoy bein yrself 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017


So the books on ADHD arrived. So many questions answered.

Most of the things I struggle with in this marriage have nothing to do with the addiction. I struggle with his lack of responsibility, laziness, spaceyness, leaving projects sitting for years, lack of motivation, constant searching for the hand to hold or the program or person that's going to solve his problems and get him to the next level - the life coach who will walk him step by step through the process. His scattered thoughts, constant excitement at the next latest and greatest thing, basing  his life off of recommendations from the talking heads and podcasters. Not thinking or acting for himself always waiting for directions. It honestly makes me want to scream!

These books have answered so much.

Now I'm not a clinician or a Dr. and neither is our therapist so the patterns we are seeing in him are completely mute until he is willing to go and get checked out by a real psychologist - which we all know is like pulling teeth because that's where the real answers lie and not some fruffy bandaid patches for the problem... but we'll see.

The current book I'm reading is Is it You, Me, or Adult ADD. By Gina Pera. It's very well written with lots of examples. Here is what I'm seeing.

  • Losing track of priorities
  • Arriving late or missing deadlines
  • Having trouble initiating tasks and following through to completion
  • Being chronically disorganized
  • Managing finances poorly
  • Loosing temper easily
  • Overspending because of grand ideas or lack of grasp on a budget, impulsive purchases
  • addictions/substance abuse including food
  • Not being 'present' in relationships
  • having difficulty focusing attention on the 'now'
  • Once focus is achieved it's hard to maintain it.
  • communication problems because of distraction
  • Distraction while watching children
  • Hoarding
  • Having a hard time with paperwork/the mundane
  • Getting distracted during intimate moments
  • Over-opdomistic about dreams or finances
  • Lying to compensate
  • Distraction with media devices/digital stimulation
  • Time management difficulties
  • Erratic work history
  • Forgetful of promises and important events
  • Overtalkative, interrupting, speaking too loudly
  • Distraction while driving
  • Concidered successful but showing impairment when compared with their potential, expending more energy than others for the same amount of work
  • Overreliance on coping strategies to compensate for weaknesses, but still experiencing problems
  • Has dificulty waiting their turn
  • Succumbs to quick gratification instead of working steadily toward bigger, more sustaining rewards
  • Rush through tasks making errors in haste, or taking more time than necessary on tasks so they are done 'right'
  • Yields easily to temptations even when it will set off highly negative repercussions
  • Fail to change strategy even after it's been shown inneffective or innapropriate
  • Constantly moving from one unfinished project to the next
  • Running unnecessary errants
  • Incessantly channel surfing or web browsing
  • Frequently humming, whistling or making odd noises
  • Feeling overwhelmed or overaroused
  • Experiencing nervousness or crankiness in controlled situations
  • Innatention, low 'staying power" loosing track of thoughts, daydreaming, 'tuning out' easily distracted
  • Forgetfullness - blanking on responsibilities or conversations, forgetting 'unimportant' past events
  • Constantly replacing 'lost' items
  • Feels 'on the go' or driven by a motor
  • Avoids tasks that require sustained mental effort
  • Adults with ADHD's core challenge is not so much paying attention as controlling where their attention is
  • Diffucult problems with self-regulation
  • "Leaky" working memory
  • Delayed development of the 'mind voice' think Jimminy Cricket
  • Hard time acting with legal or moral priniples in mind
  • hard time managing 'to-do' lists
  • Dificulty regulating emotions and motivation
  • Challenges pursuing long time goals
  • On again, off again performance
  • Low capacity for or expression of empathy - failing to think of others
  • Insatability - hard to be pleased or satisfied eg. food, parental love, money, success
  • Rigidity - both physically and in thought patterns
  • Hard time linking cause and effect
  • Having few friends
  • Doing poorly in school because of social and behavior issues as well as focus on the work
  • Engaging in anti-social behaviors
  • Experincing money problems and interpersonal discord
  • Thoughts of - my successes are because of luck only, the world is unfair, people don't like me, I have little to offer the world, I'm less worthy than others.
  • The idea that 'what's mine is mine and what's yours is mine'
  • Prickley physical sensitivities - hypersensitivity to sensory stimulation


"The challenge is not knowing what to do... it's in doing what you know." Psychologist Russell Barkley.

In many ways ADHD should be called Intention/Inhibition disorder - a condition in which the best intentions go awry

"As a partner we are not crazy... the invisible enemy we are fighting has a name AND a solution"

The H in ADHD is for Hyperactivity... but it's really 'impulsivity' a failure to think through consequences before acting. In addition the hyperactivity doesn't have to be physical - it cam be an 'on the go' mental issue

Adults with ADHD seem to require higher than average stimulation to release brain chemicals that fuel attention, motivation and self control knowing that ADHD is considered a developmental disorder involving a slower to mature function of the brain.

One scientist has called ADHD the 'search for stimulation' syndrome because their brains less activity and less reactivity to stimulation in the frontal love, basal ganglia and cerebellum. So for many ADHD adults they know more mature pursuits are important, but the payoff is neither sufficiently immediate or rewarding. Infact the mere anticipation of a reward is more rewarding than the actual reward and can feel like a letdown pushing toward the search for greater stimulation and reward. Moreover what might feel boring or tedius to a normal person can feel unnerving and undoable or even painful to someone with ADHD.

Acceleration and braking - acceleration or 'motivation and arrousal' is hard because getting started on a task is so hard. Procrastination and the adrenaline rush steps up the acceleration at the last minute, but once they gain momentum they don't regulate it which brings up braking...

Many ADHD symptoms reflect an inability to stop or inhibit undesireable behaviors. In ADHD persons the 'mental brakes' just don't grip very tightly. They just can't stop. They cant put the brakes on distractions (innatentive), thoughts (impulsive) and stopping acting out on distractions and thoughts (hyperactive).

Thoughts of a man who discovered ADHD in his 40s "I now see how I spent much of my life veering down a highway where only a cliff on one side and a guardrail on the other kept me on the road, bounding against one to the other and back again. It seems that I was always either overshooting or undershooting, overworking or underworking, overdetailing or underdetailing, and never doing anything consistently right." (hence me thinking he was manic depressive)

The goal of treatment both medical, diet and behavioral is to give a sense of hope, a sense of control, and a calmer ride.

Poor coping mechanisms can interfere with empathy but most adults with ADHD do notice when their mates are in pain, yet they seldom know how to deal with it so they dismiss it or reverse blame. It's very easy for the ADHD person to hear "you're wrong or deficient" and in response become rigid, anxious and often angry.

ADHD symptoms and acting out are exascerbated by 'labels' and negative feedback which leads to a poor mindset and poor coping strategies.

Sensory integration disorder is commonly associated with ADHD is also called tactile defensiveness and it's thought to be a 'filtering' problem within the nervous system - for instance a partner's delicate touch on their skin essentially pressed an alarm button in their brain triggering anxiety, or even anger (ticklish everywhere not just in typical spots) as a result some types of foreplay become akin to torture.