Having attention deficit disorder as an adult can dramatically affect relationships. Research has shown that a person with ADHD may be almost twice as likely to get divorced, and relationships with just one or both people with the disorder often become dysfunctional.
While ADHD can ruin relationships, the good news is that both partners are not powerless. The first step, of course, is to identify the ADHD symptoms, as more than half of adults who have ADHD don’t realize they have it. When you don’t know that a particular behavior is a symptom, you may misinterpret it as your partner’s true feelings for you.
ADHD symptoms alone don’t necessarily cause problems. It’s the response to the symptom from the partner that’s at issue. For instance, distractibility itself isn’t a problem. How the non-ADHD partner reacts to the distractibility can spark a negative cycle: The ADHD partner doesn’t pay attention to their spouse; the non-ADHD partner feels ignored and responds with anger and frustration; in turn, the ADHD partner responds in kind.
If the ADHD partner has trouble being reliable, many times the other person will try and cover-up or take over responsibilities for them. With good intentions, the non-ADHD partner tries to make the relationship easier. And not surprisingly, the more responsibilities the partner has, the more stressed and overwhelmed — and resentful — they become. Over time, they take on the role of parent, and the ADHD partner becomes the child. While the ADHD partner may be willing to help out, symptoms, such as forgetfulness and distractibility, get in the way.
Luckily there is a solution. Non-drug, non-invasive means to correct the function helps the ADHD person organize, focus and stay on task allowing them to make correct choices for their relationships and life. Call and see how BrainAdvantage can change your ADHD symptoms forever.
Stephanie Reese, PhD