Spouse of angry, raging, out of contr... - CHADD's Adult ADH...

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Spouse of angry, raging, out of control ADHD husband seeking to connect with others for friendship and support


Hello! My husband has a raging anger problem and severe ADHD. He’s gotten so bad it’s abusive. It’s made my life a living hell- so much so it’s actually caused me to have stress induced health problems. I’m literally getting hurt by his verbal attacks. I’m looking for another person who understands my situation to connect with, possibly another woman with a husband like mine. Maybe we could text or talk on the phone? If you’re looking for a friend and/or support like I am please reach out, I’d love to meet you!

23 Replies

Hey, I’m new to this platform and new to being diagnosed with pretty severe combined type ADHD. I (28y) have also been verbally abusive towards partners in the past. Sometimes, the only way to get myself to stop (my brain becomes an impenetrable fog) was to slap myself in the face. Once I had to call in sick at work as my face was too badly bruised. Feeling out of control and misunderstood fuel the anxiety and aggression - even if the catalyst for either was minor (example: someone doesn’t like my taste in music). My impulsivity gas gotten me into trouble more times than I can recount. Drinking, spending my whole paycheck on something I don’t even need, dropping out of high school, drugs, my heart stopping because of drinking and using... you name it. It took me getting dumped a few times before I realized I had a problem that wasn’t incurable, but very much manageable. Hopefully it doesn’t have to come to that with your husband. You must love him very much for posting on this site and I hope that you know when it’s become too much. He needs to understand that he needs help. If he doesn’t, there’s little you can do. A lifetime spent of being slapped around by one’s own brain is tough, but nobody deserves the same treatment by proxy. If you like, you can write me a personal message if you feel like my story reminds you of him. In any case, I wish you all the best of luck and love.

Chris_Chris_ in reply to Silas22

Hi Silas! I sincerely appreciate that you reached out and took the time to tell me all of that, and man, it really sounds like my husband! He had a history of alcohol abuse and is a recovering alcoholic. I’m feeling very hopeful hearing from you and what you’ve been through!

Hi chris

I’m the husband just like yours only my wife made me homless.

You know I gave her a book on adhd to read as basically it was a manuel on me.what Better hey.

So in the 8 yrs she read 17 pages and got no support.

She even called my psychiatrist to get me sectioned so she could have a break.he said I could but I won’t as he will come back home to the same old shit.

Yup I used to shout scream say horrible stuff.

So I bet he just flips when he gets angry ?

He doesn’t get angry it’s called being frustrated at being over passionate about somet you believe.

So you need to sit down with him ok.

Pen and paper and just try to get to understand what flips him

There are loads of books on surviving the adhd marriage.

Yup it may seem hard work but if he is willing you need to work togethor to see what would help and what doesn’t.

What I will say is that he probably doesn’t even know or remember what he does or says and it’s not till three days later he comes to apologise.

I put so much effort in to my marriage and supporting her children.but then when I get shouted at for telling the kids and it’s in front of them then they don’t respect me as the parent.

Hence I used to lose it as I would ask the children to do something and they would refuse yet my wife asks and they kinda behave.

There will be certain tings that set him of.

Also there are things that annoy you but you don’t need to show it.

I bet he is the loveliest guy though and probably moves mountains for the family when needed.

My wife would start to say calm calm very soothingly and it actually worked.

She tried it twice gave up and said it didn’t work.

Ok I may have adhd and loads of other problems but I went above and beyond for my wife and her kids and I just done over well and truly.

I hope that helps a little

You need to work as a team like any couple woujd have to any way


Hi T! Wow, thank you so much for taking the time to tell me all of that stuff! I sincerely appreciate hearing how you felt and what you did. I’m sorry your wife wasn’t as receptive as you had hoped and I’m sorry to hear your marriage ended. I’m concerned that will happen to me. I especially appreciate your suggestions and the support I feel now from your response- not feeling completely alone- there are other people out there like you who understand all too well what I’m going through.

Hi Chris

Your most welcome

Tread a little carefully as I know I felt so ashamed after calming down and seeing what I had done and how I had hurt the ppl I most loved.


Yes! My husband is that way too! I believe he’s quite ashamed of how he acts, and the other part is I think he doesn’t understand his badly he’s hurting me.

I do not recongnize any of this male behavior in the thread and I dont think it's ADHD. What it actually sounds like is borderline personality disorder, plus maybe some brain damage from excessive alcohol intake. Men are very frequently misdiagnosed. Id look into borderline PD if the person is switching off and on to extreme anger.

I wonder if this might be what is going on with my husband. He flips very quickly from being ok to being very angry. I am not sure I would categorize it as abusive, although maybe some verbal abuse at times, but this makes me think. . .my son was just diagnosed with ADHD and my husband's father has it too. My husband insists he doesn't. Honesty, i thought he might just have narcissistic tendencies and depression, but the quick flips of anger. . is that ADHD? One minute everything is fine, and then the next. . .something happens that sets him off and his mood is ruined for the rest of the day.

Hi volley

Ask him if his brain feel like a speeding train or bullet.

I would say 100% there is adhd there.

He may be dispelling him having adhd as he may feel he doesn’t want to be labelled.

I’m glad I found out I had adhd.

Ok I was diagnosed at 40 but it was such a relief to me as I knew and felt what a round peg in a square whole feels like.


Hi Volley! Yes!! It’s 100% ADHD! It’s called emotional dysregulation. And ADHD rubs in families too. I think it might be worth revisiting the possibility with your husband.

"Emotional Dysregulation, also known as emotional dysregulation, refers to a poor ability to manage emotional responses or to keep them within an acceptable range of typical emotional reactions. This can refer to a wide range of emotions including sadness, anger, irritability, and frustration. "

Potentially overblown emotional reactions. NOT abuse.If its abusive, the cause lies somewhere else. What I see here more than anything are partners and spouses who complain about ADHD as if it were a catchall. Most of them havent even bothered to understand or learn about ADHD ,but use the diagnosis against their spouse. If the ADHD spouse is feeling overwhelmed by their lack of care in situations and goes overboard, without being abusive, somehow it still seems to be twisted into abuse by these spouses who do not even bother to learn about ADHD, and take no responsibility in the interaction between them and their mate.

Im not abusive to anyone, I dont fly off the handle at random people because Im frustrated, I dont know anyone else with ADHD who does either, and Im sick of abusiveness being touted as a symptom, when it is not. If someone reacts abusively, it is in them, not the medical condition of ADHD. It may be likely that an abusive partner has other comorbidities along with ADHS that are actually at fault. or they are just shitty abusive people.

"My husband has a raging anger problem and severe ADHD. He’s gotten so bad it’s abusive."

Ok. So your husbands anger problem is at fault here, not the ADHD. Anger problems can be caused by a myriad of things. GO get diagnosed and get help, for each and both of you . Good luck.

It sound like youre going through some abuse that is not caused by ADHD. I am not sure why so many spouses seem to latch onto the idea that the abusive people they are with are abusive because of ADHD/ Other than maybe they have that diagnosis and other than learning about it, they use it to blame the partners bad behavior on. Go to therapy or leave him. Its not the ADHD that causes anyone to 'verbally assault' or otherwise harm a person, it could be a myriad of other things that is causing it. But I am getting sick of hearing spouses of people with ADHD come on here and blame every kind of abusive beahvior under the sun on this diagnosis.

You defintely need help. Seek it from a professional who understands what the medical diagnosis of ADHD means. It aint this.

Agree, and will add... abuse of YOU is inexcusable.

Is he on any ADHD medication?

Hi Emerald-Eyes, yes, he is taking Adderall.

Well, I know EXACTLY how you feel. And as for the others saying us nonADHDers don't know anything, and "like to blame" ADHD, I have done research, I've read books, I've offered suggestions to help with forgetfulness. And nothing changes. Emotional dysregulation, means ADHDers can't stop and think about the words about to come out of their mouth. I get that. If it was a once in a while occurrence, I could tolerate the belittling name calling. What I have a hard time tolerating is the daily occurrence of being called nasty names, having my past thrown in my face every opportunity, and the general narcissistic behaviour as a result of kindly reminding him to look for a job, or to take out the trash. Us nonADHDers are constantly told to be empathetic to their nonstop brains. Yet, they are unable or incapable of showing empathetic qualities themselves.

I'm curious if there is such a thing as equality in a relationship with one spouse having ADHD.

My spouse was diagnosed at 4yr old. He is now a 44 yr old unmediated unmanaged ADHD grown man. Every single day, something "pisses him off". Waking up makes him mad for Pete's sake. I spend every hour at home walking on eggshells, praying me breathing won't set him off.

As for being homeless, right now I'm currently fighting my eviction notice given by my lovely mother, who is sick of hearing us fight. So even the threat of being homeless isn't enough for him to go get help, medication, or to even try and change his destructive ways. And me, I got nowhere to go, this is my home, my mother owns it. If I left, I'd be in the same house still!

So please, if anyone has their experience to share with me, what it took for them to get help, for the ADHD person to actually see and understand, that life is not a joke, that being such an abusive bully is NOT fun for the other party, and that this chaos is preventable, or at the very least manageable, please share.

Cuz I can't even laugh at the chaos beginning, I'm accused of being maniacal and being the one needing help. I can't cry without being accused of having nothing to be sad about. Hell i cant even get him to admit he does anything wrong, therefore its not him who needs help, it must be me!

Crazy going slowly am I!

Chris_Chris_ in reply to CherJer

You are the person I’ve been looking for!! You get it!!! Everything you described I can relate to! Would you like to talk on the phone?

Chris_Chris_ in reply to CherJer

Or text?

Hi Chris! I am super new to this group, and ADHD/ADD. My fiance has this disorder and it's new to him and me. He is not abusive, but I do greatly struggle with his behavior. And actually, I am the one who does the majority of shaming or judgment (what I'm trying to work on). I'd be happy to connect if you're still looking for folks. We may not have the exact same struggles, but I bet it's not far off and I have a good ear for listening.

I think a really important question here is how was your husband before Adderall? Did you ever see him without adderall or on any different adhd medication. I ask because Adderall can cause rage in some people. Adderall, nicknamed by some, Madderall, isn’t always the best fit for some people. I would highly recommended you husband going to his dr and going through his current struggles. I think a good start would be changing his medication and upping his dose. My nephew was recently diagnosed and would have crashed from the Adderall so severe, my sister had to call the police more than once. They switched him to concerta, he’s a little prince now. These medications REALLY are subjective. What works for one, may not work for another. Your husband likely still believes his medication is doing well for him because he feels it working. But that doesn’t mean it’s working better than another medication my brain working. He maybe resistant to change. Afraid he will loose his medication but he should absolutely change to something else and hopefully his dr could assure him that trying something else is a good thing.

I hope this helps.

I was only recently diagnosed but for the past 2 years, I was the abuser. I was constantly angry at my husband. For the record, I had plenty of valid reasons, however, it was impossible for me to control myself when he was around. Everything he did was wrong. I wanted to leave him every day because I had become this terrible person. I 100% wouldn’t have blamed my husband for leaving me either. I was fully aware that my attitude was awful! But I was also aware that it was his behavior causing me to act like that. Which is why I thought of divorce everyday.

Since I started my medication, our house is completely different. I can process things now, I’m not as bothered by small things and I can let things go now. Since starting my medication, I’ve realized that my husband also has adhd! If you can believe that. His adhd (which is actually worse than mine if you ask me) triggered my adhd. So we had a good mess. I’m on Adderal now. But like I said, my nephew didn’t have the same reaction. He got the Madderall reactions. Now he’s better. My husband likely starts medication in about 2 weeks. Fingers crossed!!!!!!!

But seriously. Consider a medication change! His dr should be aware of all the current marriage problems. They’re part of assessing whether his medication is effective! Which it doesn’t seem to be.

I also second what some other people above said. Emotional dysregulation is 100% part of adhd. However, abuse, whether you have adhd or not, is unacceptable. If your husband isn’t willing to get help, you shouldn’t subject yourself to this behavior anymore. Perhaps a separation would help him realize that he needs to assess his situation.

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