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ADHD Adults

Spouse filled with resentment over my outbursts

In the past year, I have had over 8 anger outbursts that have gotten physical with my husband. Granted some of them were influenced by alcohol but many were a fight that had gotten way out of hand, sending me into an emotional and phyiscal rage against my husband. At first, my husband would find it in his heart to forgive me. Now after the last 2 episodes, he has built a wall of resentment that separates us. He doesnt know how to get over it and trust that now that I am on medicine, I can control my outbursts, granted it does still scare me that I will have another one and this time it will end our marriage. How do I help my husband stop the resentment? How do I help him trust that it will not happen again? Any tips on overcoming resentment in a marriage? We still love each other but between the wall of resentment and my fear of having another outburst, we are very distant and desperate for guidance.


The truth is, other than controlling your behaviors (including I would say stopping drinking if you haven’t already) and allowing him to see your progress and intent there is nothing else you can do. It sounds like he doesn’t trust you, and frankly for good reason. If it were reversed and he physically attacked you, he would probably be in jail if you pressed charges. He may love you, but this is why they have the ‘for better or worse’ clause in the vows. If you situation permits, counseling might help but I know it’s not always something that can be afforded, sadly.

One thing I know that helps me control my rages, is I have them in my head. I have fantasized about taking a sledgehammer to the house, broken every dish in the kitchen, slapped my daughter around and even shot myself! To “normal” folks it might seem odd or dangerous but it allows me to experience those emotions and get them “out” enough that I can then find another way to deal with it. If it wasn’t for the BS of being a higher belt I would go back to taking martial arts classes. Beating stuff up legally can’t be praised enough!!!!

I wish I could help you more - my husband and I have our own issues. I don’t get physical, my problem is I ‘check out’ and get stressed/overwhelmed and just let things go. I find busy things to do all day so I don’t completely waste my time, yet there will be large, obvious things that need doing and they won’t get done because I’m avoiding. I try to work on it and he doesn’t bring it up much and that seems to work for us. LOL But I know it aggravates him. In return, he is ADD as well I believe, and will just sit around ‘waiting’ for me to do it like he’s on some high horse with something to prove. Which just ends-up screwing us both and makes me scratch my head at the logic. But you are in no way completely alone.

Posted by Zafra on Oct 06, 2011 at 3:27am

I just found out about 5 years ago at age 51 that I have ADHD - I was actually relieved to find that out, since I had spent my adult life acting in ways that I didn’t even begin to understand, much less my husband of 35 years as of this year

We had a major discussion the other day, at which time he told me that over the years my dominating attitude, attributed as we now know to the ADHD, made him feel emasculated - wow, talk about a direct slap in the face, I never saw that coming - now, he has a knee jerk reaction whenever I express a strong opinion that is opposite of his - I know he is just thinking “oh, there she goes again” instead of actually listening to what I’m saying and why I’m feeling the way I am

It’s very hurtful, especially since I have been working very hard since my diagnosis to change my behaviors and attitudes - of course, I’m far from perfect, but I can feel a sense of peace and calm that wasn’t there before, because I have come a long way from where I was - I did a lot of research and take 3 or 4 natural supplements to help the whole process along - I’m proud of myself for my efforts and I really don’t want to continue on with him thinking I’m being an ADD bitch every time I open my mouth

It’s a struggle, I hope we can work this all out . . .

Best of luck to you - try the best you can to keep the lines of communication open - seek professional help if you think that is necessary

Posted by Aloha Liz on Oct 06, 2011 at 3:30am

Its strange that you blame physical abuse on ADD. I am not in acceptance of that. ADD is just an excuse.

And Yes I have ADD and Yes I know what it feels like to get angry. However, that is no excuse for physical abuse.

I bet you make excuses for everything else that goes wrong too. I dont have any sympathy at all for you. If it was a man telling this story we would all be hating him. But I guess because its a woman then we are supposed to accept it. Well NO. You’re probably just an angry person with or without ADD.  You really have no excuse for what you did and your lucky that your husband is still around.  If it was me I would have kicked your ass and then sent you packing!

Posted by Itsbeenablast on Oct 06, 2011 at 5:22am

@Aloha Liz, for him it’s been 30+ years of learning to deal with you in one mode. 5 years is nothing in terms of having to learn how to deal with a new you.

My wife is a domineering bitch and I’ve been dealing with it for 20+ years. I have no idea how I’d ever deal with her in any other way than I do now. And I’m supposed to be the creative ADD one!

Posted by ADDedValue62 on Oct 06, 2011 at 7:26am

I think a lot of us have anger issues and that is not surprising. I fluctuate between anger and depression, don’t know which is worse.

But the anger not only hurts me, but it hurts others as well. I hate myself after a blow-up with my husband. And wonder when he will stop accepting my apologies ( have never gotten physical ).

However, we must take responsibility for our actions. Drinking will only make matters worse and lower your inhibition against losing control of your emotions. NOT drinking will go a long way toward resolving an anger issue.

Wishing you the best, Artielle

Posted by Artielle on Oct 06, 2011 at 7:38pm

I agree with Artielle’s statement that anger hurts you. We cannot completely control anger, and some people have very little control of anger at times.  Examples include people with any degree of bipolar disorder.  Get whatever professional help you can, and love yourself in spite of the mistakes you make. You don’t have to love the behavior to be kind and patient about what you have not been able to do in spite of trying to change.  Have patience also with your husband’s natural reactions.

This reminded me of an article I saw earlier today in a newspaper : Drop a grudge and you’ll feel better, experts say,

Good luck!

Posted by ADD_RN on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:40am

ADHD expert Melissa Orlov has weighed in with a response to this question about ADD adults with anger-manangement problems. We hope this helps!

Posted by Anni Rodgers on Oct 14, 2011 at 9:10pm

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