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MommingTooMuch 01-03-19 05:12 PM

Some improvement but follow through low
 
In furthering my therapy I am gaining better control and understanding of my role in the adhd marriage experience. I have unknowingly been the co-creator of ongoing battles that create adrenaline/cortisol surges for dear adhd husband. His whole life he seems to have thrived on the intense surges of fight/flight that are created by constant procrastination or lack of planning.

I understood none of this before and am just getting familiar with the high stim form of adhd.

He is still on the medication and that has really helped. I am convinced that therapy and other resources/tools would benefit him. He continues to back himself into corners by not planning ahead or taking responsibility.

He has doubled his coffee intake and candy/pop intake since starting meds. At the same time he is now 4 months sober. The sobriety is huge for our family and is big achievement for him. He says he no longer feels the urge to drink. The urge to drink disappeared when he started the Adderall.

My question is how do I helpfully support/encourage him to start therapy and seek tools to help him better organize his time and thoughts. I don't want to anger him by "momming" and undermining his feelings of progress.

Are there any tools that have worked for you or your families?

IamHanSolo 01-03-19 08:08 PM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
The short answer? You don't... You are not his mentor or coach or mom. You can support him by going with the ideas HE generates. And if they don't work out, then encourage him to try again with something new or different, but do not provide any criticism. Neither positive or negative. Let him learn from his own mistakes. Let him do the research. Let him try and fail a hundred times if that's what it takes. Just don't do it for him.

sarahsweets 01-04-19 05:09 AM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
I think in your case you have every right to strongly encourage /ask that he try therapy.

daveddd 01-04-19 08:59 AM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
I read some of your other posts and I'm sorry you have to live like this

but honestly planning and procrastination may be issues but they don't seem like the most damaging.

it seems like he is an emotional child who is good at manipulating

so really even if he went to therapy hed probably just tell the therapist , and you what you want to hear and buy himself time till this blow overs


that might be way off but it just seems like a common story of caring non adhd partners

MommingTooMuch 01-04-19 10:42 AM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
Thank you everyone for your honesty. Yes, his bad days are very bad. He has lived his whole life with untreated adhd. He has many maladjusted reactions to his painful emotions.

These are only a portion of him. He also has amazing traits. He has many great days and I believe he can improve his life. He always seems on the edge of the bottom dropping out from under him. The reasons are almost always because he didn't plan ahead for whatever the thing is so it became a problem rather than just a day to day thing.

I am hoping there are ways for him to do better time management/organization using tools. Are there any helpful apps or calendars that have worked for organization.

acdc01 01-05-19 12:07 AM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MommingTooMuch (Post 2012759)
I am hoping there are ways for him to do better time management/organization using tools. Are there any helpful apps or calendars that have worked for organization.

I just use ok google (apple should have an equivalent) and the native calender app. So I don't install anything that isn't already preinstalled in the phone.

So when I know I need to do something, the minute I need to do it, I just say "ok google, remind me to do my homework on Monday at 2 pm", or I say set an appointment for ..., if I want to set an appointment time for a meeting instead (this gives a range of hours and sends notifications in advance).


It doesn't really matter what app I think, it's just getting into the habit of programming it right away when someone tells you something you need to remember (though I feel like spoken commands are way easier).


Another idea is amazon's echo. You could get this for yourself to listen to music and it can do a lot of other things besides that. Gives you the excuse of getting him to use it cause you already got it for yourself anyway. It works pretty much the same way as a phone reminder/calendar app I think. My only concern is that your husband won't want you hearing his reminders out loud though I think it's beneficial for you to hear it at the same time as him so you feel comforted you don't have to remind him yourself (or you can know he did get the reminder).

acdc01 01-05-19 12:41 AM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
So since you asked for an app, I gave you a recommendation earlier. But for me, just planning ahead will not keep me from procrastinating/missing appointments.

I myself am actually very good at planning my time. My issues are:
1. I feel a sort of anxiety when I have to do something I don't want to do. So even if I've preset a time to work on something I can't actually bring myself to do it at the prearranged time cause that anxiety keeps me from starting it. It's only after I've procrastinated to the last second that the stress of the due dates overrides the anxiety I feel and I can get started on the task.

2. I hear my alarm go off but the next second, something else has sidetracked my mind and I've completely forgotten about the alarm/reminder.

If it's only about putting something in a calendar and doing a better job planning time, I think that's something that can be improved. If his anxiety overwhelms him so he just can't get himself to start doing something till the last minute, this is not going to be fixed with apps. And he needs meds and therapy for other reasons, but in terms of procrastination, I doubt they'll make much difference though still worth a shot.

I myself have never found a solution. The most effective thing for me is to eliminate the tasks that give me that kind of anxiety (delegate work to others, hire someone else to do it, exchange work, figure out another way to achieve the same goal, etc.) or figure out a way to not dread the task so much (take baby steps, make it more fun, etc.). I rarely succeed at making a task interesting enough to me that I can not procrastinate. I nearly always eliminate the task which means I have never truly improved in terms of not procrastinating stuff I don't want to do. But by figuring out how to eliminate the task in a way where I can still achieve my goal, I'm still succeeding. Sorry if this sounds confusing.

To this day, I procrastinate everything I do though I always finish just in the nick of time. It's a stress I know I just have to have so anyone that shares my life with me has to accept that (instead of trying to change me) and not be too stressed themselves by it. I keep the overall stress down by minimizing the number of tasks I have to do that I am prone to procrastinate to a minimum. This works well for me.

This will be the last time I say this as I sound like a broken record I'm sure. But I still think you should give your husband a deadline and if you aren't happy in the relationship by that deadline (or he relapses), you should leave him. It's great that he's sober now but I think he does accept that being a drunk is wrong of him so he actually tries with that. But I don't get the sense he takes responsibility for his other actions and even blames you for them. You can't get someone to help themselves if they don't truly want to improve. And even if he wanted to improve, if you aren't happy, then putting blame aside, you guys just aren't right together if you aren't happy together.

Good Luck.

daveddd 01-05-19 12:29 PM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MommingTooMuch (Post 2012759)
Thank you everyone for your honesty. Yes, his bad days are very bad. He has lived his whole life with untreated adhd. He has many maladjusted reactions to his painful emotions.

These are only a portion of him. He also has amazing traits. He has many great days and I believe he can improve his life. He always seems on the edge of the bottom dropping out from under him. The reasons are almost always because he didn't plan ahead for whatever the thing is so it became a problem rather than just a day to day thing.

I am hoping there are ways for him to do better time management/organization using tools. Are there any helpful apps or calendars that have worked for organization.

sorry, I probably was out of line. personally just not on board with separating a person and their behavior towards others

so your question, I don't know of any apps

but the book "the mindful prescription for adhd " gave me several tools for life tasks and handling emotions

easy read, not just a book describing all our behaviors , but actual tools

daveddd 01-05-19 12:30 PM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
https://books.google.com/books?id=ny...20adhd&f=false

MommingTooMuch 01-05-19 02:11 PM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
@acdc01 Wow, that is very helpful feedback. I think I am gaining a lot of insight and understanding. My therapist agrees I need to change myself and not keep expecting him to change. If I can stop being disappointed, angry, or sad then I can regain control of my mood, choices and life. I am working on this and starting to succeed. I also agree about the delegating tasks. I am navigating how to get him to give up some tasks without taking offense.

My husband also procrastinates everything or puts it off. I think he thrives on the rushes of stress. Just like the candy, coffee, arguing. He gets a boost from these things. I am going to start the amazon echo idea this weekend. Thank you.

I hear you on the deadline and you are not alone in this suggestion. I will keep this in my head. Right now I am not putting my happiness first. I feel like I need to try to reduce the crisis occurring in the family. But yes, there should be a deadline. Thank you.

@daveddd Thank you, I am excited about this book and will order in right away.

Thank you everyone for the ideas, advice, and support. I am getting a lot out of this.

acdc01 01-05-19 08:52 PM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MommingTooMuch (Post 2012800)
@acdc01 I am navigating how to get him to give up some tasks without taking offense.

Just to make sure you understand, I do think he should give up some tasks but imo I don't think you should do his work for him. You can't sacrifice yourself to make him happy. Cause ultimately, no one will actually be happy that way.

I mean exchanging work (i.e. my mom hates cooking so I give her some of what I cook while she helps with the routine financial chores and I deal with investments). Hiring help to take tasks off both of you, etc.

For example, when I first graduated college and moved out, I actually couldn't do everything needed to take care of myself. But I didn't even realize it because I had automatically found ways to make it so I didn't have to do the work that I couldn't do that needed to be done.

I couldn't get myself to wash dishes. So I got paper plates and cups. I couldn't get myself to wash my clothes. So, I took my clothes to the laundromat and had them clean them (besides underwear).

I prioritized money this way telling myself that what truly makes me happy is not trinkets or expensive furniture or material stuff, it's having time to do the things I enjoy doing (or in your case, spending time with kids or something else).

At some point, I decided I wanted to save some money for other things. So I tried to overcome one issue at a time. It's a lot easier to solve problems when you can solve them one by one - less pressure. So I tried to solve the can't do laundry problem.

A body double is a coping technique that helps ADHDers. That's where someone else is either doing the same thing with you at the same time or they are just sitting there why you are doing it. It does wonders for me. My sister came to visit me and we did laundry together. I found I could do the laundry when she was doing it with me. While I was doing the laundry with her, I focused on each step of the laundry, seeing which steps I found the hardest and why. Breaking tasks into steps and really understanding how you feel about each step is really helpful in solving problems. I found there was really only one step that I really had difficulties getting myself to do. It was separating out the clothes so my dark clothes didn’t discolor my whites that got to me (had to do that back in the day). When I realized that, I put two baskets right by my shower so I could just drop the dark clothes in one and light ones in the other thereby eliminating the need to sort clothes later on. This (as well as singing while doing the laundry to make it less boring) made it so I was able to do laundry.

Does your husband participate in a support group or frequent an ADHD forum? As you can see from my examples, the way ADHDers think is often very different from a normal person and the way we solve problems are not the same either. It’s why an ADHD group/forum can be really helpful. No two people think the same but he may be able to get some ideas from others and they may help him understand himself.

He is at a severe disadvantage when it comes to improving. One because he really doesn’t want to try. Two, because he doesn’t accept himself and want to understand himself. It’s by really understanding yourself and the reasons why you do certain things (or not do things) that helps you figure out how to solve your problems.

I hope you are able to convince him to give the echo a shot. You can always just use it to help organize yourself. Maybe if he sees it helping you, he might give it a try without you having to suggest him using it (though I suspect he’ll probably know your real motives anyway which I’m afraid may cause problems.) As I said, it’s near impossible to help someone improve that won’t help himself.

Sorry, seems I wrote a page.

MommingTooMuch 01-06-19 12:34 PM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
@acdc01 Thank you for the elaborate explanation. I appreciate all of the insight. It truly helps when I get better understanding of how adhd thinking is different. It allows me to come up with better solutions and not jump to anger.

I agree I do not think he wants to change or look to closely in the mirror. He will have to. This is one of my firm demands. I am putting a deadline on his working with a psychiatrist for better medication management and therapy.

Thank you!!!

daveddd 01-07-19 06:01 PM

Re: Some improvement but follow through low
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MommingTooMuch (Post 2012838)
@acdc01 Thank you for the elaborate explanation. I appreciate all of the insight. It truly helps when I get better understanding of how adhd thinking is different. It allows me to come up with better solutions and not jump to anger.

I agree I do not think he wants to change or look to closely in the mirror. He will have to. This is one of my firm demands. I am putting a deadline on his working with a psychiatrist for better medication management and therapy.

Thank you!!!

that will make mindfulness tough (don't buy into any myths about mindfulness being religious hocus pocus, its proven science)

it takes work

but while it didn't cure my adhd, it cut out a lot of the dangerous behaviors I had that are known to travel with adhd


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