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Over some time, yes.  My situation has gotten somewhat to the mother/child roles.  Still learning about ADD/ADHD, not sure what advice to give, except to affirm your experience.

Posted by DeedsNVA on May 07, 2014 at 10:52pm

I understand a bit what your going through. ME and my husband have a rocky sex life. He has ADHD issues with hyper focusing. And one of the things he focuses on is sex. He lacks the emotional side of sex and my needed but wants sex all the time. Feeling like his mother or always being the one to nag is how I feel. But I try and put aside my feelings and try and connect with my husband.

Posted by tocool29 on May 07, 2014 at 10:56pm

Yes, parent/child relationships will always kill romance, period.

Posted by BC on May 07, 2014 at 10:59pm

Also, something you said in your other post was that he had tried 5 different meds, all of them had worked for a short time, then just quit.  That doesn’t make sense to me, btw.  One thing I can say from back when I started meds (in a double ADHD relationship) is that I noticed I was no longer nearly as capable of hyper-focusing on the “wrong” thing anymore.  Before meds, that hyper-focus could suck me in and never once have that Nagging Voice we all have inside (a conscience) wake me up & shake me out of it.  Internal Nagging Voice could honest-to-God just disappear.  Then after meds I couldn’t help but notice that hyper-focus on something I really *shouldn’t* be doing WHEN there were other things that were more important & needed to get done would be a state of mind I’d only be able to achieve if I stopped taking meds or I learned how to just ignore my own conscience (now that it butted in so much more frequently).  I remember thinking at some point early on that IF I were the kind of person who was OK with using ADHD as an excuse to play all day instead of be productive I would be inclined to stop taking meds (and would have to invent some excuse for stopping them).  And I wondered how many other people might do that…just something to consider.

Posted by BC on May 07, 2014 at 11:20pm

Excellent share BC. Thank you.

Posted by CullyRay on May 07, 2014 at 11:29pm

I’m sorry you and your husband are having a hard time.

Parent/child relationship patterns can develop in ADHD/non-ADHD relationships, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Those patterns can also develop in relationships with neuro-typicals as well. They’re not exclusive to ADHD!

Some couples I’ve worked with have been really successful in changing those roles and renegotiating a more balanced partnership l, but both partners need to really WANT to change them.

If you haven’t already, I would suggest couples counseling or working with an ADHD Coach to get things on a more even keel. Even if he isn’t successful at finding a medication that works for him, he can still make dramatic improvements in his functioning by learning about his ADHD, his own unique strengths, and how to do things differently.

And you don’t need to wait to work on getting better balance in your reltionship until he makes those changes.

Best of luck!

Lynne Edris, ACG
Life & ADHD Coach

Posted by ADD_Coach_Lynne on May 07, 2014 at 11:37pm

I would recommend The ADHD Effect on Marriage by Melissa Orlov.  I read this book too late to even work on my marriage, but it has given me hope that I may strive for a healthier relationship, next time.  I believe that with hard work a health relationship is attainable. 

Best of luck.

Rob Henwood

Posted by Rob_H on May 08, 2014 at 1:11am

Thank you Rob… if you’re ok with it, could you tell us if you are the one with ADHD? again, Thank you.

Posted by CullyRay on May 08, 2014 at 1:50am

So glad I found this topic, I thought I was the only one going through this.  My husband is ADD and I feel more like his mother than his wife.  And when it comes to the bedroom, I don’t view him in a sexual way anymore.  The longer we’ve been married, the more he takes the “child” role and I’m the “mommy” to everyone.  I wanted a partner in marriage, not a grown child.  Wish I saw the signs earlier.

Posted by Machelle B on May 09, 2014 at 7:52pm

As a mildly (?) ADD husband, I can relate to this conversation too.

As a recovering “hyper-focuser” I would throw out the suggestion to turn the sex-hyperfocus of the spouse towards intimacy (not just physical sex).  Here’s what I mean… the hyper-focus creates a lot of desire and motivating energy to attain that focus.  Maybe suggesting to your spouse some specific, intimacy-building activity (romantic dinner,  quiet walk without the kids, house chores, or?) that will help achieve the hyper-focus of the physical part of sex.  Maybe you would say something like “If you want to have some fun later tonight, _________, would definitely get me in the mood”.

Me personally, I have learned that if I have sex on the brain but my wife probably does not today, there are few things that say “I deeply love you” like a freshly swept and mopped kitchen floor!

Posted by j m b on May 09, 2014 at 9:54pm

Oh Michelle, you are Not Alone. I know how you feel on both counts - I wish I had known too.

Posted by CullyRay on May 09, 2014 at 10:17pm

Michelle B that is exactly me!!!!  My husband refuses to admit he is ADD.  I see him as my 3rd child.  Even our friends refer to him as my child.  He gets very offended.  I want him to step up and be the man in the relationship but there are trust issues there and being romantic with him is very hard.  I can’t see beyond where I feel he has “failed” me because of his ADD.

Posted by lgfenley on May 09, 2014 at 10:48pm

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