View Full Version : figuring out friendship with an ADD/ADHD man
11-03-04, 08:12 PM
hello out there - i have a small problem that i'd like some opinions on. i use to date this guy and he has add. i think i was very supportive of him and i really enjoyed our relationship and at one time he felt the same way. then one day he broke up with me out of no where. i tried to be understanding, but i just got my feelings hurt. so i said to myself enough is enough and i figured i'd move past that relationship and that he really didn't want to be with me or even friends. recently he forwarded an e-mail to me about a get together that was going on. he didn't say anything else in the e-mail he just sent it to me personally (not as part of a group). i would love to see him but really i feel that he could at least say something in the e-mail to me since i haven't heard from him. i have to say i'm confused because i know that it may have taken him some effort to reach out to me, but i'm afraid that sometimes i let him get away with too much and I use his ADD as an excuse. you know when i read the posts on this site i see that there really are people that have real relationships with people with ADD and it looks like they both put forth some effort. am i being too critical by expecting him to at least address me in the e-mail, or should i just be glad that he reached out to me?
11-03-04, 08:47 PM
I would like to give feedback, but don't have a good feel for the situation yet. And I may tend to use ADD as an excuse. Have the two of you ever spoken since your surprise breakup? Had he mentioned ever having abruptly done this with another person he was dating? Any clues prior to the breakup?
11-03-04, 09:16 PM
We have spoken since our breakup but only for a few minutes a few times. He has never mentioned breaking up with anyone abruptly before, he really doesn't like to talk about past relationships as I have tried to get him to open up about past relationships but i was not successful. I actually was having my doubts about the relationship as I wasn't sure where it was going but i expressed a desire to stay in the relationship. We went out for over a year but he really didn't like to talk about his childhood or other relationships so i did not press him as i thought this would come in time, but i did feel frustrated and expressed it. he broke up with me about a month later and said he had too many things going on and he couldn't focus on our relationship let alone other things. I'm really not concerned so much about the break-up anymore, it is what it is; at first i didn't want to be friends but then i calmed down and said i did but he really wouldn't speak to me for any length of time. that's why i'm surprised that he is even trying to reach me. i would like him to stay out of my life if that is what he wanted or to be in my life and communicate with me like any of my other friends (and most of my friends would at least say a few words in their e-mail to me especially if i haven't heard from him in a long time). i didn't respond at all to the e-mail and did not attend the event. i know that when you have ADD it can make social situations difficult and i don't want him to feel badly for trying to reach out to me, but that's the problem, i'm not sure if its me overextending my understanding or if i should not expect him to do better then this and accept his type of empty communication. what do you think?
11-03-04, 10:16 PM
i think that you are under no obligation to do anything for him unless it's something that you *want* to.
i think that it's very caring and compassionate of you to think how your non-response and not showing up at the event might make him feel.
so, "should" you appreciate the effort to communicate with you despite the fact the he fell short? .... hmmmm, sounds like you'd be compromising something that you need in order to make him feel better. so, you feel worse, but he feels better.... i'm thinking that's not such a good deal for you.
in my opinion the reason why he can't communicate well is irrelevant because there is *no* reason to accept less for yourself than what you need. your needs are valid. by not responding to his e-mail and not attending the event, you have made it clear that his effort wasn't enough. no need to feel guilty about that!
good job taking care of you!
11-03-04, 11:41 PM
my add friend is often very subtle in making his intentions known, but he says he almost always means something in his actions and comments. but sometimes his rationale is not what you would read into it, so for example your friend might have thought: gee, falling might like this get together, rather than: gosh I miss her, if I ask her to this 'do' then we might get a chance to talk.
I'd say if the invitation independently holds some interest, go and enjoy yourself. Or you could just email him back and say you aren't sure if you can make it, but is it supposed to be superfun or not? Maybe he knows something.
11-04-04, 06:10 PM
thanks for the comments. i actually did not go to the event and did not respond to the e-mail. i just think its best to not try and interpret what his invitation might mean at all. i'm tired of trying to figure out what is going on with him as i feel i put more effort into trying to understand what is happening. Relationships which includes plotonic friendships require two way communication - so unless he is able to actually form actual words in an e-mail (or phone) for a normal exchange without any mystery that requires intrepretation than i'll just keep it moving.
11-04-04, 07:03 PM
Relationships which includes plotonic friendships require two way communication - so unless he is able to actually form actual words in an e-mail (or phone) for a normal exchange without any mystery that requires intrepretation than i'll just keep it moving.
You are so right, It is not up toy ou to interpret what their subtle hints of actions might mean. It is up to him to communicate.
I think you are very wise to walk away. He made his intentions clear and you sound as if you are very young and have a lifetime ahead of you. Keep walking forward, do not look back, and make sure you find someone who will be able to give you what you want and deserve in a realtionship. It is not fair for you to do all the work. And, it does take work regardless if there is ADD in the mix or not. ADD just often makes it harder.
I understand what you are going through. I would be the ADD guy. From my perspective, He was probablly feeling trapped. No offense, it isnt your fault, or his.
You have to understand, we are different from "normal" guys, but we are still guys. A normal guy would say forget this, and try and take full control of the situation, when feeling trapped. Not us, we act on impulse, we say what we feel, I DON'T MEAN, HE FELT HE AWANTED TO CALL IT QUITS. We are very sensitive and impulsive, we tend to panic because our feelings hit us so much harder, but like i said before WE ARE GUYS. We sometimes feel afraid to talk about our feelings and look for the easiest way out of the mood we are in.
But I still say follow your heart, If he still has it, well then go find him, if it is beating with in you, keep it there.
08-04-05, 11:07 PM
Thank you mulk,73 you have also reminded me about my friend who is incommunicado at the moment. I sometimes forget how exquisitely sensitive he is, meanwhile still being a guy er..guy.
That follow your heart line is very poetic, but practical advice.:)
Somehow I want to think about that a lot.
08-05-05, 08:43 PM
it's funny that these post appear now. i last made this post in nov. of last year (2004) and mulk73's response yesterday was interesting. i heard from my ex-bf yesterday but only via e-mail. no real communication. i say this because he e-mails me or calls me every two weeks. i have not called him back the last few times to make a statement but then i felt bad and did call him. i'm sure he just wants to see if i will return the call. i haven't had real communication with him and its frustrating because i miss him dearly. but our issues are really far more than ADD, but at the end his impulsive actions got in the way of what was a good thing and now we both are kind of suspended in mid-air. it's nice though to know he thinks of me as i do think of him but what can we do. nothing really and so it goes...such is life i suppose.
08-05-05, 10:42 PM
Sometimes you might like someone but you can't get any further. It's happened to me before too. It's hard to explain why this can't happen, but it's true.
At least you know someone else in the world thinks very kindly of you, enough to call and check up every now and then.:)