View Full Version : Advice on sharing ADHD diagnosis with with husband and family


Maggs1113
08-24-17, 11:16 PM
Hello!

Newly diagnosed as of this month after a counselor I was seeing for feeling overwhelmed and burnt out suggested me look into ADHD. I told my husband about the counseling for overwhelming work/life stress, but hesitated to tell him about the ADHD diagnosis until about two weeks ago. I was kind of afraid of an awkward conversation and bit the bullet because it's pretty important to share that kind of info. He immediately rolled his eyes and I feel his first thought was this was a bunch of bs and excuses for me forgetting to put away dishes or procrastinating all the time which irritates him beyond words. He was like, "so now what? I guess they're going to try to give you meds like they try to give everyone?! And next will be our kids and extended family...." I kinda was out of words before I began because I wasn't expecting that response.

I think between then and now he does believe me and if I ask him to remind me to do a certain chore or errand I want to do and think I may forget, he's been good about reminding me. Maybe it took a bit for the idea to sink in and accept it? He still avoids talking about it. Like if I bring it up, he just watches tv and stares at the tv but sort of responds here and there. Anyone else have similar experiences sharing news with family or good friends?

sarahsweets
08-25-17, 04:18 AM
Are you on medication now?

Maggs1113
08-25-17, 12:32 PM
Yes, trying Concerta 36mg since 27mg didn't help and not feeling this is either, which is another story! :p He knows I'm trying medication but hasn't given any other feedback.

sarahsweets
08-26-17, 03:54 AM
Hello!

Newly diagnosed as of this month after a counselor I was seeing for feeling overwhelmed and burnt out suggested me look into ADHD. I told my husband about the counseling for overwhelming work/life stress, but hesitated to tell him about the ADHD diagnosis until about two weeks ago.
This is important to note: You shouldnt hesitate to tell your spouse about your very real, diagnosed disorder. I encourage you to think about that.


I was kind of afraid of an awkward conversation and bit the bullet because it's pretty important to share that kind of info. He immediately rolled his eyes and I feel his first thought was this was a bunch of bs and excuses for me forgetting to put away dishes or procrastinating all the time which irritates him beyond words.
What a jerk move, no offense. Has he ever read about or known someone wth adhd? Cause it sounds like he needs better information. It also sounds like he is not very supportive. Is this the only thing he isnt supportive about or are there other things he doesnt offer support for? Many times people who have spouses that are belittling or dismissive about one thing find a pattern of their spouses being dismissive or patronizing about other things.

He was like, "so now what? I guess they're going to try to give you meds like they try to give everyone?! And next will be our kids and extended family...."
Wow, how ignorant. You should tell him that meds are there to help treat a condition that the medical community has deemed appropriate for treatment. Meds are approved for treatment and you deserve support for meds if you and your doctor decide to try them.


I kinda was out of words before I began because I wasn't expecting that response.

I can understand why you were speechless. Having your partner and someone that you love act like that to you is an awful feeling. Does he take any medication for anything in his life?

I think between then and now he does believe me and if I ask him to remind me to do a certain chore or errand I want to do and think I may forget, he's been good about reminding me. Maybe it took a bit for the idea to sink in and accept it? He still avoids talking about it. Like if I bring it up, he just watches tv and stares at the tv but sort of responds here and there. Anyone else have similar experiences sharing news with family or good friends?

I have not had that experience and if my husband refused to talk about something and stared at the TV silently while I tried I would be totally p*ssed. And hurt. I think its important for you to think about whether this is the first time he has offered no support for something about you or if this is a pattern.

sarahsweets
08-26-17, 03:54 AM
Yes, trying Concerta 36mg since 27mg didn't help and not feeling this is either, which is another story! :p He knows I'm trying medication but hasn't given any other feedback.

He is missing out if he doesnt give feedback. No feedback=you dont get to say jack about my treatment progress.

ToneTone
08-26-17, 05:22 PM
Maggs, sorry to hear of your husband's reaction. That kind of response isn't totally unusual.

So one point to make is that this is a time for you to believe in yourself and to affirm yourself. I know this sounds a bit dramatic, but really there are times in our life when we really have to step up and believe in ourselves and take care of ourselves, despite what others may say or think. ADHD, as you probably know by now, can be extremely debilitating.

Missed deadlines, incomplete work, horrible procrastination, job failure, layoffs, financial problems, increased car accidents, increased risk of addictions ... ADHD even undermines social life and social skills because people have trouble paying attention to the words and cues of others ... and have problems figuring out what we ourselves feel and think.

Being in a marriage with a partner who doesn't have ADHD (and who doesn't even believe the condition is real) is extremely hard ...

The "non" partner can easily start to feel superior and treat you like a child ... because they may be more organized and all of that ... This is not easy, but you want to disrupt that dynamic ... You don't want to be getting treatment to show you are meeting the standards of this partner. You want to get treated because you want a better life for yourself!

So that is another task: to stop apologizing for not behaving like others think we "should" be able to. And to start giving yourself permission to find shortcuts and get help with tedious work, housecleaning and the like.

There is a lot of discussion on this board about navigating relationships. This can be helpful.

Good luck.

Tone