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David Baxter

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How to Curb Your Spouse’s ADHD Impulse Spending
by Helen Dwork, ADDitude
August 18, 2019

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Q: “My husband, who has ADHD, and I have been married 21 years. I’ve always had trouble dealing with his messy habits. I used to organize his clothing drawers, but they become disorderly in two days. I have given up now, and just toss his things in the drawers. I can’t keep him organized. He has too much stuff, and he continues to buy more. Can you help?”

A: Choose your battles. If your husband doesn’t care if his drawers are organized, why should you? Angels never wept over messy drawers. However, they do lament impulse spending, which is the real danger here.

Shopping lights up the receptors in our brain like those of a hunter seeking prey. It is addictive. Unneeded acquisitions clutter our homes, stress our marriage, and ruin our financial health. When an individual is prone to impulse purchases, but can’t organize what he buys, it is particularly challenging. So you have to find a way to give your ADHD husband his “fix” while avoiding his purchasing items he doesn’t need. You must change the family culture without nagging your husband.

I suggest a three-month experiment in which both of you shop only from a list. Groceries, pharmacy, and hardware store needs are on the list, and everyone stops buying clothing or extracurricular items during this period. Purchases outside these parameters are researched first and subject to spousal approval. There may be occasional exceptions; if anyone wants something he or she believes is vitally needed, but isn’t on the list, the spouse decides whether the item is necessary. If it has already been bought but she decides it was unnecessary, the purchaser agrees to return the item that same day. This experiment applies only to objects, not experiences, so use the time and money you will save by going out to restaurants, sporting events, and concerts.

About Susan C. Pinsky
Susan C. Pinsky is a professional organizer specializing in ADHD. The mother of a child with ADHD, Susan lectures frequently on organizational issues on TV, on the radio, and in print. She is the author of Organizing Solutions for People with ADHD and The Fast and Furious 5 Step Organizing Solution.
 
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I find it funny that I blamed my husband for overspending. Turns out I’m equal partnership on that! lol We’ve both cut back a lot, and it takes some getting used to. We’re trying to reign each other in when one asks “Can we order in for supper?” Instead of giving in, we try to talk ourselves out of it!

*sigh*


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Daniel

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There is always the $1 menu at Taco Bell [emoji39] But I like making black bean or veggie burritos at home. And my favorite staple is black beans and rice as a meal.
 
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It’s not so much the food not being available... It’s more like whosever night it is to cook I think the ADHD may be a little at play when we both feel exhausted and “don’t feel like prepping/cooking.”

And then the go-to impulse is to order in.

I think I need to talk to my ADHD coach for this one...

I do the majority of the cooking and groceries so there is usually a mix of medium-maintenance to low -maintenance to easy-breezy-lemon-squeeze meals. I always try to cook so there are leftovers. I try to leave all the easy-breezy stuff for my David but I do indulge with the easier stuff occasionally. The nice thing is that David always cleans up no matter who cooks: he insists. I’ve done dishes when he’s taking a nap or he makes me stop. lol My David also makes lovely breakfasts and his own really tasty version of ratatouille/hash with various veggies, cheeses, and chopped hotdogs. I love it. I also make breakfast for supper sometimes (either pancakes or French Toast with eggs n bacon)... Only one pan to cook with when it’s Breaky for Supper.

I figure I have to be mindful of why we don’t want to cook and then take the time and energy to get me/my David to “buy into” why it’s better/more advantageous to cook... And maybe somehow break it into smaller tasks? Which is what I’m doing when I cook extra...

[emoji848][emoji2955]



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Daniel

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and “don’t feel like prepping/cooking.”

Open can of beans. Microwave.

Cook instant rice.

Done :D

But seriously, after I moved to Arizona, more and more of what I eat is Mexican food. I love it since it is usually easy to prep, cheap, and also easy to shop for since the ingredients are similar. Triple win :)

Like you, I also like having breakfast for dinner.
 
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