Six Secrets to a Happy ADHD Relationship

You can have a happy ADHD marriage.

Read that again, you probably don’t hear it often enough.

The statistics are scary and at times you might not believe it’s possible to make a marriage work with ADHD in the mix. You fight too much. Your house is a mess. You can’t find your keys. You’re late for appointments, if you even remember that you have them. The bills are late. You say things without thinking or tune out during important conversations. Life is chaotic. And still, adults with ADHD are completely capable of happy, fulfilling marriages.

All marriages have their ups and down, but if one or both spouses have ADHD, the relationship is significantly more challenging. Two people, two lives entwined, every day, under one roof…and ADHD. It’s complex, it’s hard, it’s beautiful, it’s not impossible.

Marriage is like a rope. The entwined threads can either be sturdy or frayed.  The rope stays strong and supportive as you both reach and climb upward together. But with too much stress the threads can become twisted and frayed, the rope weakens and gradually your relationship starts to fall apart.

The good news is that you are always an active participant in your marriage. You can choose your role, how you communicate, and the behaviors that can either strengthen or weaken your bond. If you are willing and ready to strengthen the rope that holds you and your spouse together, you will bring back the warm, cozy feeling you had when you first met.

Remember when you met? Do you remember the sparks that were flying between you when you looked into each other’s eyes? Something about that person made you want to spend the rest of your lives together. You can bring that feeling back again. In fact, it can be even better than that – a deeper, more mature and profound connection – if you choose to make the effort.

Relationships thrive when both partners act lovingly towards one another, willing to make an effort to grow, and committed to working on themselves.

Follow these 6 ways to live peacefully with ADHD:

  1. BRING BACK THE LOVE

You loved each other once. As the years go by, you know more about each other. The “real” person comes out. Often you find yourself thinking, what happened to the person I fell in love with? The more comfortable you get in relationships, the more you take them for granted. You forget to nurture and nourish them. Expectations cause disappointment. Resentment sets in, secretly hiding in the background of your lives.

With ADHD, life can be lived impulsively or haphazardly. After a hard day at the office, a stressful commute home, driving children to after-school activities, it’s hard to feel romantic; especially when you are late, forget your keys, or realize you didn’t pick up your kids.

It sounds unnatural, but if you want to emotionally reconnect, you have to schedule private time for your relationship. Yes, that means make a date (like the old days). Put it in your calendar. Busy days filled with work, phones and Facebook can distance us from our partners. Schedule a “shut down” time at least once a week. No phones, no TV, no interruptions. Just be together. Talk about your day. Leave out the comments, judgment, and criticism. Pretend you’re on a first date again.

  1. SLOW DOWN

Life with ADHD is often frantic. Leaving the house, finishing projects, and showing up for appointments on time can be stressful for the person with ADHD. Each day whizzes by. Sometimes you can’t even remember where you went, what you did, and who you were with. ADHD is fast-moving; in the body and the mind. Take time to slow down your body. Intentionally, move slower. Your mind will follow.

  1. ACCEPT IMPERFECTIONS

People with ADHD have a few more challenges than most. However, everyone is imperfect. Even you. Once you accept your own flaws, you will think differently about your partner’s imperfections. We are human; all of us are struggling through life individually, yet together. Judgmental, critical thoughts distance you from peace and love.

  1. LOOK FOR THE GOOD

Every trait has a positive and negative side to it. The trait that drives you crazy is probably the same trait that brings a benefit to your life. Start by giving compliments. Say something nice. Sometimes you have to look hard to find it, but if you value your relationship it’s worth the effort. Remember your impulsive partner may be the fast-acting doctor, nurse, or EMT who is saving someone’s life.

  1. PRIORITIZE YOUR CONFLICTS

Most things couples fight about aren’t worth the effort. Every comment, disappointment, or difference of opinion does not have to turn your home into a battlefield. Try not to react when negative emotions are strong. Speaking while angry causes damage to your partner and to the relationship. Take space for yourself to manage your feelings and pick your battles.

  1. BE ON THE SAME TEAM

One of the most important things you can do is join forces. Be on the same team. Bickering, competing, and criticizing are habits that are harmful to a loving relationship. When you’re in the midst of negativity, be it an argument or just the voice in your head, remember to regroup, readjust, and realign your thoughts so that you feel united with your partner.

  1. PRACTICE COMPASSION

This is indispensable within any relationship. A person with ADHD often feels disappointed, overwhelmed, and frustrated. When a person with ADHD appears to be acting selfishly, it may be that he or she is feeling overwhelmed with their own thoughts. ADHD takes up a lot of mental and emotional bandwidth. It’s exhausting and often the ADHDer is struggling to get through the next task. Slow down, be compassionate, and refrain from judgment. Your ADHD loved one will respond lovingly to your kindness.

An ADHD relationship requires patience and compassion, at times more than other relationships. Understanding what it feels like to have ADHD- without judgment- will help both partners stay on the same page and allow you to regain a peaceful, happy home.

The more love you give, the more you will receive.

June is a personal excellence coach, blogger, and author specializing in ADHD. If you have ADHD, or love someone who does, visit her website, junesilny.com, where she shares her experiences with ADHD.

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      • Janelle Tobin
      • July 2, 2018
      Reply

      Hi everyone, reading this website & these comments is spot on for me & my situation, and I’m hoping to get some advice. I dated a guy for 3 years. He has ADD/ADHD but never took medicine for it. He said his parents didn’t want him to take meds when he was younger, due to side effects., and he never took meds as an adult either. Our relationship was great in the beginning but slowly declined & we broke up in December. We have continued texting since then & saw each other twice & were on the same page about things – that we were both working on ourselves, but wanted to stay in contact. I know that there are things I could have done better in our relationship, and I am willing to work on those because I still want to be with him. I know deep down that he is a great person, I just got easily frustrated and lost patience and so did he. However last week he told me he was no longer attracted to me and needs something “fresh and new.” The thing is that I know both of our personalities are up and down and I’m wondering if he was just in a certain mood at the time. I’m wondering if it makes more sense to give him space for a few months and contact him then, or to continue texting and talking. Any advice/thoughts would be appreciated!

        • Kelly Thomas
        • August 7, 2018
        Reply

        ADD aside, and years of heartbreak chasing after a man, DO NOT chase after him or contact him. You’re worth more than that no matter how hard it is for you to let it go. The minute you say, “Whatever!” you will feel freedom like no other, because the right guy will not require so much work! Then, eventually, you will be open to the man who will chase and want YOU! I promise!

    1. Reply

      Hi everyone! I just found this wonderful community of people who are trying to deal with ADD. My fiance has ADD so I’m doing a bit of research and trying to learn and understand what to expect and how to prepare for a life with him.

      At the same time, I’m working on writing a Capstone project for my University about coping mechanisms for people living with adults with ADD. I’m doing a couple of interviews with mental health professionals but I would love to also get an interview with some people who have real-life firsthand experience! If you are an adult with ADD or live with an Adult who has ADD, let me know! I would love to interview you!

      Thank you!
      Alicea

        • Jodi
        • July 24, 2018
        Reply

        Hi Alicea!

        Are you still working on your project?

        Jodi

        • tom
        • May 27, 2018
        Reply

        as a person wtih ADD and wife has anxiety .. i trigger he all the time how do i stop that or control my self

        • Jen
        • May 23, 2018
        Reply

        Hello, I am a non ADHD female about 6 months into a relationship with an ADHD male! When we first met I didn’t know he had ADHD but I picked up fairly quickly that he had to stay busy to stay content! Eventually I asked him about it and he told me he has ADHD! I was quick to dismiss the importance of learning about it because I was with an ADD male for 3 years as my first relationship and also the father of my son! Being with him was like being with any other person, I only had minor set backs with him so I assumed ADHD was no different! As time moved on we knew very quickly that we found our perfect match in each other and didn’t waste any time in discussing our long term plans and became pregnant with our first baby, about 2 months in things changed in him! If I didn’t know any different I would have and did for a while start to feel like I dropped completely off of his radar, he stopped coming to see me almost entirely, I was putting in all the effort I could to see him for what little time he made for me once a week if that! I had no job and being pregnant couldn’t find a job, while he had 2 jobs as an EMT/Firefighter and Mechanic/Repo! So I didn’t make a huge deal about it, I chalked it up to him being busy! Eventually I became used to things as they were! How I felt inside kept me from nagging, or bitching at him, I just kept everything to myself to avoid pushing him any further away! Up until early this month when I was forced to move to my moms putting more than 200+ miles between us, ultimately adding to our problems! When I learned of his confusion to my attemps of talking to him about all of this I grew increasingly conserned to finally learn how much different communicating with his ADHD really is, and I’ll tell you I am releaved to find that it is his ADHD combined with my lack of knowledge on it that is more than half at least responsible for why we are in such a mess, but I couldn’t believe how differently our brains function from each other because of it considering he functions every bit as normally from day to day as I do, if not it feels like he’s more advanced just in all that he can do! It’d surprise anyone who watched us individually to find that he’s the one with such a challenging deffect! The difference between us is I can read and make sense of long complex explanations, and stories such as what I’m typing here, he can’t! He gets frustrated easily, and it’s mostly if I go to much into detail or too long in what I try to say! So I struggle on knowing how to simplify my message and speak more in direct! I guess what I’m seeking is help from a more experienced person who might know methods I can use to best reach him with out tripping his hair trigger! I have felt like I am walking on eggshells around him to avoid pissing him off! He acts on impulse! Has temper from hell and a short fuse! I’m not interested in giving up on him in the slightest! He’s worth everything to me at this point! So I’m willing to do what ever he needs to connect with him again!

          • Leo
          • September 14, 2018
          Reply

          I have ADHD and can answer the talking-to-him thing and simplifying the messages – u can talk to him for a long time and he will listen and be able to interact if the communication style is objective and direct. I can give two examples of you talking about having a bad day at work:

          1 (ineffective): Gosh, work was horrible… how is it that Gloria in the next office earns more than me even though I do better work than her? I can’t stand her! Why hasn’t management seen this yet? Are you listening to me? Also, that new boss bothers me a lot – he keeps talking about his new condo and it sounds like bragging and I can’t stand to listen to it. Do you like condos?

          2 (more effective): I had a 3/10 day. I have realised that the work:pay ratio in my workplace is skewed. So I’m going to look for a new job – perhaps you have some suggestions? My boss was talking about his new condo – do you see yourself living in a condo?

          The sound we make when finishing a question will keep the ADHD brain focused on the speaking too, so throw more questions in – can be anything, stranger the better, but to keep the focus even more make them specific rather than vague, e.g. when discussing paint options for a wall, ask ‘does this colour positively affect your mood? rather than ‘do you like this colour?’

          Good luck.
          XO

        • Noel
        • May 16, 2018
        Reply

        Hi Alicea. I have known my husband for 25 years. We were married in 2004 and divorced 9 years later and are currently reconciled although I can now see the role ADD has played in the downfall and current struggle in our relationship. I’d also be happy to answer any questions for you as the non-ADD spouse struggling to stay in this relationship.

          • Faranaaz
          • September 7, 2018
          Reply

          Hi Noel, I married the same person twice as well, but he had a drug problem once he was young hence his ADHD has progressed exponentially. this is a different person from the first one I married. I’m tired. I’m frustrated. taking care of him has caused me to lose absolutely everything. he refuses to get help. He refuses to change. I believe he secretly takes drugs behind my back so how can I help someone who wants to live his life this way. I know what triggers his bipolar episodes and he continues to do things that are not good for his well being and his mental stability. how do I help someone like this.

          what do I do?

        • Lys
        • May 11, 2018
        Reply

        I moved in with my boyfriend about a year ago. It has been interesting to say the least lol. He was diagnosed with ADD as a kid and is functional without meds as an adult. I grew up with 3 brothers with ADD/ADHD. I have anxiety that mimics ADD when I’m stressed out. I’m sure with all my years of experience I can answer some questions for you.

          • tom
          • May 27, 2018
          Reply

          as a person wtih ADD and wife has anxiety .. i trigger he all the time how do i stop that or control my self

        • Rekindle
        • May 11, 2018
        Reply

        Hi guys im really in dire need of some advice. My husband is the one that struggles with ADHD. Were both 27 and our birthdays are both in June ( mines the 8th his is the 20th) Were both Geminis also ( not really sure if that has anything to do with our relationship or not.) We’ve been together for 3 years married for 2 . We also have a 7 month old baby boy . After reading these comments i’ve come to realize i’ve been doing this all wrong. We constantly fight over dumb petty crap , and sometimes we cant get along. I believe i may be a little like him. We always forget things , my kitchen is a mess , i work now so most days i don’t feel like cleaning & he throws that in my face ( alot ). I agree i may not speak to him with a calm voice sometimes but sometimes i just talk loud and he thinks im mad and we start to fight again. We can never just talk it out. He always calls me a psycho cause i get mad and end up forgetting the entire reason we were arguing. Lol What can i personally do to let him know im not always mad and want to argue. ? How do i show him i really do love him.? How can i stop the bickering and the fights.? My husband is going to leave me and i would really like to rekindle with my love.

          • Carolyn
          • May 18, 2018
          Reply

          Most likely he’s just threatening to leave you. Men with ADHD make threats, get mad, make themselves and everyone miserable, fight over stupid things, and turn arguments around to make it seem that the other (non-ADHD partner) is the one in the wrong. But they don’t leave, in general. My advice? If he won’t get on ADHD medications, then leave him NOW, while your child is young. You and your baby will be fine. Get some counseling and move on with your life while you’re still young. Monitor your baby for signs of ADHD when he enters schools, as it is highly genetic, and make sure he gets the help he needs. You can do this, and you can recover. Don’t put up with this ADHD madness anymore!

        • Lana
        • May 10, 2018
        Reply

        I would be happy to answer some questions … And would love to see the results. Both I and my Husband have ADHD-from research on different aspects of our relationship I recently realized that this is likely the cause. I got diagnosed about 8 months ago and he is just now realizing ADHD is likely his problem as well. He is working on becoming treated for his but his doctor is not as ready to consider ADHD to be the source of his symptoms. She is not as readily open, and has prescribed a different antidepressant and then a subsequent appointment was a stronger dose of antidepressant . So frustrating. Our relationship is typical where I am carrying most of the workload, he is not understanding my stress and feelings and health is being affected by it. We recently separated do to burn out on my part. We have two children and se is now in crisis mode and ready to listen an advocate for himself and our relationship.

        but his symptoms are really destructive to our relationship

        • Lindsay
        • April 27, 2018
        Reply

        Hi there,

        I am ADHD and was diagnosed in 4th grade. I was married for 7 years and am convinced that it was my symptoms that ended the marriage. He might have been a little ADD as well. Anyway, I would love to be interviewed…. any way I can help people understand the feelings and emotions of someone like me. I give anyone who marrys an ADHD person credit….I’m not sure it’s something I would want to/be able to take on.

        • Cesca Miller
        • April 24, 2018
        Reply

        Hi Alicea,

        I happen to be both a mental health professional AND an adult living with ADHD, also married to someone with the diagnosis. We were both diagnosed as adults. I’d be happy to speak with you about my experiences if you are interested.

        • Anonymous
        • April 20, 2018
        Reply

        I am an adult woman with ADD.
        I only got correctly diagnosed when I was 40. I’m 44.
        I was misdiagnosed for 20 years.
        I researched endlessly until I realized that it seemed like ADD and went to my doctors, explained, and they agreed. I would not mind being interviewed.

      • torn
      • April 3, 2018
      Reply

      My boyfriend has been diagnosed with ADHD since he was a kid. I met him one and a half years ago. I definitely did not expect to have a relationship with him since I am leaving the country the next year. He was obsessed with me, wanted to see me everyday, almost felt like I was the only thing he sees. Fast forward to now, we’ve been in a long distance relationship since 8 months ago but have met each other 3 times in between. He just left two weeks ago to his country and we said goodbye with hope. We promised to each other that “We’ll figure things out. We’ll make it work”. Yesterday he told me that he’s not sure anymore if continuing this long distance relationship is a good thing. We are faced with this tough choice that we might have to get married to be together (in less than a year). We agreed that we can’t stretch this long distance relationship for too long and at the same time. He said he is extremely overwhelmed especially because he doesn’t even have a new job yet. He resigned a couple of months ago due to extreme stress. Finding jobs has been very difficult and I can see that it spins him around. He told me that he wanted to come to term with being ready for that commitment because he doesn’t want to lose me. However, at the same time, he is fully aware that he still have issues that he needs to deal with. I love him very much with all my heart. Having to hear him say all this is just heartbreaking for him as I am so far away from him and I know he is trying his best to cope. He told me that he might not be able to hold a relationship at all: might never be able to get married or have any children (after we talked about getting married and having children just a few weeks ago). This uncertainty is giving me terrible anxiety (I was diagnosed with severe anxiety in 2016). I also wonder if this is worth it… We have been through so much and he is such a loving person… But I want a family. If there is anything that I know for sure in my life is that I want a family. I’m just in such a dilemma. Relationship only works if both partners are putting the same commitment and effort in it. I don’t even know where we are at right now.

        • Anonymous
        • May 18, 2018
        Reply

        Do not marry him. It will only get worse. I’m married to a man with ADHD and I’m miserable. I’m only still here because we have two wonderful children (one has ADHD: It is highly genetic). My husband is so mean to me and won’t seek treatment for his ADHD. He says he has outgrown it. Well, you never outgrow it!It’s a roller coaster. Escape while you can.

        • putan timpu
        • April 10, 2018
        Reply

        dear torn ,
        if u love him just go ahead and continue your relationship …
        there are so many options out there if u want kids.

      • Heather
      • March 16, 2018
      Reply

      I as the person without ADHD do so much more work to understand and cope with it. It is really unfair. I’m so tired. My spouse is so disorganized, and procrastinates, and is so distracted. I send him material on strategies to control his symptoms better and he ignores it. I am getting to the point where I feel that we should separate for my own sanity. Of course he believes this is all my fault. He won’t finish things or keep promises then ignores me when I get upset about it but that is a reasonable thing to be upset about. I have an autoimmune problem made worse by stress and have barely been able to get out of bed for anything but work the last two days due to the stress of my marriage. Anyone got any advice?

        • Lisa Partesius
        • August 14, 2018
        Reply

        Heather, I cried as I read your post. It’s me who has ADD and my husband of almost 33 years has said and felt just as you have stated. It sucks having ADD. I try but seem to fail back to the same behavior that is driving my husband crazy. I’m finding very little on the wife with ADD but it’s just as heartbreaking.

        • Tracey gillespie
        • August 7, 2018
        Reply

        In am in that exact same dilema and currently resting up due to severe stress and anxiety brought on by my adhd partner of 4 years. I would be keen to share coping strategies etc

        • Jen
        • April 18, 2018
        Reply

        I’ve been with someone for nearly 3 yrs who has ADHD, it’s getting worse, I’m finding it hard to cope with, he gets nasty with me for no reason, I do everything for him, treat him with respect! He’s used physical abuse few weeks ago, I love him, he’s making me into an unhappy person and I need to get out. As I have a heart I worry about him after I tell him I can’t do this any more. I feel so lost. Help 😥

        • Libria
        • April 10, 2018
        Reply

        I do have some advice, after 25 yrs of marriage to somebody totally unreliable.
        (1.) ACCEPT that he will always be unreliable, just as you would accept that Seattle will always have cloudy weather. It’s annoying but hey, it’s not like you married him for his secretarial skills.
        (2.) ACCEPT that you’re going to carry 100 percent of the responsibility for every important inflexible obligation of your household, regardless whether you’re married to him or divorced from him.
        (3.) MAKE A BOUNDARY where you have independence and autonomy from him, for any part of life where unpredictability is not OK. For example, keep him far away from mailing your tax return to the IRS.
        (4.) GET SUPPORT. You might need to spend household money on babysitters and maid service, and that might be non-negotiable for your sanity. If he disagrees, then fight with him about how to spend money, but don’t fight with him about whether he’s a bad person.
        (5.) ENJOY the parts of life that can be spontaneous and unpredictable. He’ll give you a fun date and an entertaining conversation after 25 years of marriage, and there aren’t many men you can say that about.

          • Eddie Colunga
          • September 21, 2018
          Reply

          Libria,

          As a male diagnosed with ADD, my experience seems opposite to yours. I am treated, but even before treatment had no issue in being reliable, holding jobs, supporting family, pursuing creative interests, parenting children, etc… If your analogy would have stated that he would always have ADD like it usually rains in Seattle I get it.
          Carry 100% of the weight? If that is the case then maybe my wife has a more severe case of ADHD, yet undiagnosed ,than I ever did as that is how I feel most of the time.
          Maybe one of the two bigger things not to do would be to use language like ‘MAKE A BOUNDARY’ which can come across as distancing, or unloving, but rather say something like it might be a good idea and helpful to both of you to review the return together for the inaccuracy that could creep into it from a casual mistake for the better of the both of you. It is important to know that the two of you have different strengths. I find that people with strong logistic skill that can fire off a list of sequences without mistake often have difficulty creating a better solution to a problem.
          BOUNDRY: I mostly see your point, but I don’t think anyone wants to fight over being a bad person.
          ENJOY: Perhaps the best thing said. Creativity and spontaneity are important elements of life. Even some without and ounce of ADD are good at this too.

          • Alicea Soldini
          • April 19, 2018
          Reply

          Hi Libria,

          I think you have some great points here, thanks for sharing! It’s great to hear these things coming from someone with so much life experience. My fiance has ADD so I’m doing a bit of research and trying to learn what I’m getting myself into. At the moment I’m also working on writing a Capstone project for my University about coping mechanisms for people living with adults with ADD. I’m doing a couple of interviews with mental health professionals but I would love to also get an interview with someone who has real life firsthand experience living with an adult with ADD! Would you mind if I asked you a few questions? Maybe we could do a quick over the phone interview?

          Alicea

          • Alicea
          • April 19, 2018
          Reply

          Hi Libria,

          That is great advice, especially coming from a person with 25 years of marriage experience! I am doing a bit of research on the topic because my fiance has ADD and I am trying to get a better idea of what I am getting myself into. At the moment, I am working on a capstone project for my University called A Study of Coping Mechanisms for Individuals Living with Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. I am doing a couple of interviews with mental health professionals but I would love to get the perspective of someone who has so much life experience. Would you mind if I interviewed you?
          Thank you for your time!
          Alicea

        • Darlene
        • April 6, 2018
        Reply

        As a spouse of an adhd man for 28 years, I can say that when there are issues , they may improve for short periods of time after nagging/complaining etc. but unless there is a strong commitment on their part to change IT WONT. After being ready to get divorced (about 7 yes into marriage)I gave my spouse the option to take some adhd meds or we were done. Meds “help” but don’t rectify all of the frustrating behaviors . As a woman whose kids are almost all grown and out of the house I’m considering calling it quits again. Things really don’t improve . It’s the same issues over and over. No matter how many times you ask/remind/help etc things dont really change . If you are new to the relationship and you are already feeling frustrated, get out.

          • Tania
          • May 4, 2018
          Reply

          I have been with my husband for 24 years. We have nine children ranging from 1 year old twins to 19 year old. I have had moments of leaving often over the past ten years. My husband has had lots of unemployment (probably more than half our marriage). He seems consumed with ADD (which he was only diagnosed with in the first few years of our marriage). It feels like it’s something that controls our marriage. Every character flaw or challenge is put down to ADD – “that’s part of the condition, that’s me”. I understand the symptoms of ADD but does that mean I always have to live with them? Do I always need to be the responsible one? The organised one? He can’t take medication. I now need to get a job despite homeschooling three of our children and still breastfeeding twins, because we cannot afford to live. My children get so annoyed with him because he shouts a lot, is self centred, doesn’t seem to care about anything anyone else cares about, speaks harshly , makes excuses, blames – and this is all put down to ADD. He says I undermine him with the children, rather than seeing his own behaviour pushing them away. I just want some peace and consideration rather than having our whole family life consumed by ADD. I’m really sick of it and feel like I don’t even like him, let alone love him.

        • Hannah
        • March 30, 2018
        Reply

        I feel like I can relate to this so much.
        My boyfriend is 21 and has adhd, he was diagnosed when he was around 3. Every day is so tough, he doesn’t keep promises etc, and he lies about little things. He’ll put washing in and then get distracted easily and never finishes that. Sometimes I feel like he says things to hurt me, but I can’t seem to get him to understand that I have quite severe anxiety, and it causes me to just stay in bed all the time.
        It really is hard to deal with, I’ve done a lot of research but I’m unsure of what else I can do. Especially since I can’t talk to him because he gets frustrated easily.

        • Kate
        • March 26, 2018
        Reply

        Heather, your life is literally word for word my life. I’m currently out of work for illness including stress brought on by this debilitating illness. I’m so resentful and if I’m told to read one more article about how I need to be more supportive, I’m going to loose my mind. So much damage has been done. I have lost myself and my life for my partner. I truly believe the best thing is to go our separate ways. I’m sorry this isn’t helping you but maybe validating your feelings.

          • Tracy
          • April 20, 2018
          Reply

          Hi Kate…we seem to have a lot in common! I also am married to a man who has ADHD as well as bipolar disorder….and the mix is not pretty. I am currently off on medical leave due to a mild stroke where I could use a little extra help and understanding…..but dealing with his outbursts and antics have really taken a role on me and our 4 boys. When I reach out to seek advise….all I get is how I need to be understanding to him….and I really have tried, but I have 4 other little humans between the ages 2 and 19 to think about. My husband and I have had a long relationship that has been off/on due to the constant stress within our household. No idea is a good idea unless he came up with it, he struggles keeping jobs, sometimes he becomes violent and condescending and says that he constantly feels disrespected…..yet he is completely unaware of the negative tone he uses rather than being pleasant. The sad part is…..I’m afraid if we leave that we will not be able to make it financially or that he will no longer make an attempt to assist in caring for our youngest son…..as I am not well enough to do it all on my own.
          Thank you all for sharing your stories….because at least I know I’m not the only one dealing with these issues.

      • Laz
      • February 11, 2018
      Reply

      Hi, I’m looking for some help or advice if anyone can help me.
      I’m 21, last year of college looking towards the possibility of starting a new life post graduating with my girlfriend (23). We’ve been together close to 2 years and she’s the one diagnosed with adhd. We have a long distance relationship which in itself is really tough for two people with no adhd. But adding that to the mix and my anxiety and various struggles due to a previous relationship, we’ve had a rough time.

      We both love each other and are doing our best, but the reality is that we need a third party to help my partner. We’ve considered the option, but where she is currently living, there are very limited amount of LGBT friendly therapists that are within our budget. I’ve been reading book after book and articles to try and help our relationship, but each day it gets tough and the constant nagging/uncaring feelings appear and lead to fights over stupid things.

      What can you suggest we try or read or do?

      Please help us.

        • capricon
        • February 16, 2018
        Reply

        Hi Everyone, I am also looking for advice.

        I really appreciate all your comments and helped me realize a lot. However, I still feel sad and hopeless to fight for our relationship with my ADHD BF. We’ve been in a long distance relationship for 2 years but only now I feel very exhausted and burst. All the feeling of those non-ADHD partners is also what I am experiencing until now like feeling unloved and no appreciation from our partner and even cheated once. I feel stress. I still have the feeling that, over million girls in this world why me has been chose to date him? and I don’t know if I will be happy to continue this path with him or I will just let him go. I also observe that I am just the only one fighting for us and if I give up, I feel like he will not chase me and fight for me. He threatened me many times that he will break up with me and I am just the one asking and beg him not to and continue to workout with me. But after reading all your messages here, I feel like I am not really a super hero to save him, and I don’t know if I am still sure to workout with him. He always doubted me loving him but in fact I am just giving him unconditional love, but he never appreciate that and I only received resentment. please help me…

        For those partners who is non-ADHD:
        1. what is that main ingredient or reason why until now you still willing to fight for your relationship even you are not married or not?
        2. Where does your strength coming from to continue to fight for your relationship?
        3. Is it really worth fighting for?

        maybe base with your answers will help me figure out what to do next. thank you.

        • Reply

          I’ve been married for 26 yrs to man w/ adhd & it has taken its tool on me in many ways. He has refused treatment r even that he has it until last yr. It’s a sacrifice to say the least to stay married to someone who lives in denial & won’t listen but argues constantly.

          • torn
          • April 3, 2018
          Reply

          My boyfriend has been diagnosed with ADHD since he was a kid. I met him one and a half years ago. I definitely did not expect to have a relationship with him since I am leaving the country the next year. He was obsessed with me, wanted to see me everyday, almost felt like I was the only thing he sees. Fast forward to now, we’ve been in a long distance relationship since 8 months ago but have met each other 3 times in between. He just left two weeks ago to his country and we said goodbye with hope. We promised to each other that “We’ll figure things out. We’ll make it work”. Yesterday he told me that he’s not sure anymore if continuing this long distance relationship is a good thing. We are faced with this tough choice that we might have to get married to be together (in less than a year). We agreed that we can’t stretch this long distance relationship for too long and at the same time. He said he is extremely overwhelmed especially because he doesn’t even have a new job yet. He resigned a couple of months ago due to extreme stress. Finding jobs has been very difficult and I can see that it spins him around. He told me that he wanted to come to term with being ready for that commitment because he doesn’t want to lose me. However, at the same time, he is fully aware that he still have issues that he needs to deal with. I love him very much with all my heart. Having to hear him say all this is just heartbreaking for him as I am so far away from him and I know he is trying his best to cope. He told me that he might not be able to hold a relationship at all: might never be able to get married or have any children (after we talked about getting married and having children just a few weeks ago). This uncertainty is giving me terrible anxiety (I was diagnosed with severe anxiety in 2016). I also wonder if this is worth it… We have been through so much and he is such a loving person… But I want a family. If there is anything that I know for sure in my life is that I want a family. I’m just in such a dilemma. Relationship only works if both partners are putting the same commitment and effort in it. I don’t even know where we are at right now.

          • Kristy
          • February 28, 2018
          Reply

          I don’t know how i let this happen… the love of my life of 18 years is throwing me away like a piece of garbage he wants nothing to do w/Me i Am devastated by his actions and his verbal assults everytime i try to have a conversation try to tell him how much I love him and how sorry I am that I can’t do anything right in his eyes anymore but you got to know the backstory I have been with this man for 18 years and no it hasn’t been easy for either one of us . I try and try to do my best I am in love with him and I thought he loved me the same way I trusted him completely. It’s been the two of us for so long I thought he understood me I thought he knew everything about me I struggle with ADD depression anxiety and all that crap that goes with it he’s a recovering drug addict he has dyslexia I don’t hold that against him I have helped him through all his struggles over the years I was always there for him I’ve had a difficult last few years I lost my grandmother she was that one person I knew love me unconditionally if anyone can understand what that means like I do he has a landscape business that he started with $0 12years ago I am very proud of him he’s a very hard worker I’ve even worked with him on many occasins bm verytalented he’s done very very well for himself I am a hairstylist I have been since 1995 it’s my true passion I do very well but it’s taking me a little bit of time to get on track working in a nice high-end salon because that’s what I deserve ut as yhe had to make me see that for myself because he pushed me in the right direction . rsI’ve tried so hard to be there for him and anything I could to make I would forteeaeareformyothererltoknow I don’t even know who this man is he doesn’t understand anything it’s all about him but I guess it’s always been about him he’s dyslexic I know this man so well I don’t know what I did tell to have him hate me this much he’s so angry he thinks I hurt him so bad really isn’t one specific thing that I even know of I go to the grocery store too long you know the typical s*** like was along with all this nonsense can’t talk we fight I’ve been walking on eggshells for so long I just want to be happy with him I want us to be happy I want him to fight for us like I have fought for us. I thought we were in this for the Long Haul’ because I know in my heart we were meant to be together I just know otherwise why would we have been fighting this whole time for each other . I know people get tired I know people need to feel loved and appreciated and that’s all I do is love and appreciate that man I jus t don’t know how to fix this and maybe I can’t fix it maybe that’s what’s killing me hes beentaking testosterone gel maybe the last 4 years and I’ve noticed a drastic change in him he’s hostile mean moody he’s smoking pot again has been for a little bit now used to be just at night but I know it was going to happen now it’s all day long don’t tell me that don’t change somebody because it does I’ve seen it with my own eyes so where the mass he wants to be out of our house I don’t know what to do all I know is that I don’t want to give up then I want to fight but I can’t fight it alone

          things right there how have completely changed him but he won’t admit it

      • C.T.
      • February 1, 2018
      Reply

      My partner of 12 years was diagnosed with ADHD last year and admitted to a drug addiction as well not long after. Our major point of contention for the past few years are his disappearing acts. He’ll frequently say he’s running to the store or something quick like that and not return for 12 – 48 hours all the while texting me that “he’s on his way” or he’ll be back “soon”.

      The first 8 -10 years of our relationship wasn’t like that. (He pulled many weekend all nighters, but they were with friends when I was around – not independent of me. I always went to sleep and got back up in the morning.) He’d always make it to his plumbing job Monday – Friday though, his work ethic was something I really respected about him because it was something we had in common.

      He refused to go to addictions treatment and has supposedly been clean for 3 months now, but the disappearing acts and shady secretive phone messages are still happening. He’s been prescribed Concerta but it’s amateur hour compared to the illicit drug he was (is?) using – I’m not seeing any improvements in the ADHD behaviours and his disappearing acts have started happening on worknights this past year too.

      I’ve begged, cried and tried to rationally explain how his behaviour is impacting my sleep, health, work, etc. He always says he’ll “try” to compromise but it just happens again in a day or two. There’s so much I love about the guy, but it feels like I’m just surviving life in spite of him being in it, no chance at counting on him for support for me. All I wanted was a partner/companion now I find myself being ambushed into a corner where I’ve become the mother-figure/bitch/nag for asking him to just be home between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. at night, just to be constantly disappointed over and over again. How do I unravel the ADHD symptoms from addiction symptoms? Is my request for him to stay home at night an unreasonable request?

        • Rw
        • February 3, 2018
        Reply

        Not unreasonable at all. I’m not a professional but that sounds related to addiction. I would seek professional help in your case. If he’s unwilling, it could be time to consider more drastic steps. Perhaps an intervention would be helpful.

          • R.rs2
          • April 5, 2018
          Reply

          I agree . It is not an unreasonable request..but Rw…. Whst you dont seem to understand is that its more than just addiction…..this person has ADHD as well…… Seems to me that you are judging bcuz of drugs…..
          I know someone kind of like his partner.,.does whatever he wants, doesn’t call, but worse…..I am the one with ADHD but he doesnt seem to think thats my problem…its just me that’s the problem…. And the fact I had dabbled w drugs in the past (nothing like this mans partner) but bcuz of this man i had gotten addictions to certain pills.. I am doing s grest job cutting down…to the point where I won’t be addicted anymore..but he isnan extremely judgemental man w double standards bcuz hes a drunk……verbally, mentally, amd sometimes physically abusive….but he gives me hope..hope which , unfortunately is beginning to dwindle away… He says to just trust him and be happy…. But hiw can i when i ko he will be leaving me soon..and not just leave…just run away and leave me broke,alone, and w a broken heart…. All becuz of his assumptions…

          My point? See the entire picture…..you just see drugs….

      • TAS
      • January 10, 2018
      Reply

      I resisted getting involved as i have mental health problems and have been hurt so many times which sets back any progress ive made with coping and functioning in general – but when my currant bf (diagnosed in his 40s with aspergers) persisted and insisted my issues would not affect a relationship with him, and knowing what i knew by then of similar past relationship problems, i believed we had a real good chance (please excuse any grammar mistakes) the first few months he seemed so proud to be my man, was attentive although our sex life wasn’t great the rest of the relationship was lovely – unless my depression hindered me participating in an activity which we both ordinarily enjoyed, but i always pushed myself so not to let him down, didn’t want to go through being made to feel useless or lazy again but sometimes i cant even hold a pen through being physically affected by my mental exhaustion, and i think this is when he started to withdraw from me, realised maybe i couldn’t be everything he hoped i would be, i adore him and have many books in the hopes i can find a way to be able to communicate, we only see each other once a week as is now and during the week he as good as ignores me, he has nearly slipped up a couple of times when saying he was talking about something sex related to…(hesitates before saying their name) so i ask who and he changes the subject or says cant remember or else makes me feel bad for not trusting him which will ruin our relationship etc, it feels almost like emotional blackmail, when we row because of how distant he is now or the horrible things he then says rather than accept he could possibly be contributing to us falling apart, he reluctantly agrees to read the help books for couples ‘if it will make me happy’ but never follows through. He has started working at least two hours longer each night lately which i didn’t push him about even though it made me question, but this week he said about me going to his for dinner this evening then called me back to say he had a business meeting that he forgot he may need to go to, yesterday he said it was ok as he didnt need to go now. He knew at the beginning of the week i wasnt feeling great so eould have to let him know for sure i could come on the day (i let him know yesterday i would) today i managed to be ready on scedule as he wanted me at his for 7. I heard nothing from him all day so at 6.30 i text him to make sure he was home from work, he didn’t reply til nearly an hour later when he said he was now home cooking his dinner. I was already on my way to his when he finally replied so i pulled over, said i will leave it for today then and just see you saturday shall i? He said yeh ok. That was it. He knows how hard it is for me to get ready on time and even leave the house due to anxiety but i was so pleased i had managed to do it all only to feel stood up. I turned round and came home again. He hasn’t said anything more as of yet to me. I know he has certain communication problems though have to say he didn’t display any problems in the first few months, sorry this is so long winded, i would like to know is there anything i can do to firstly find out if he is actually sincere? I know i cant make him read the relationship help books if he isn’t interested and i have tried ending it twice now but he eventually comes round lets himself in and acts like nothing has happened (he wouldnt have come round if that were true) he then tells me he cares, says he will make more effort, goes home and we are back to square one again. Are we already doomed because we both have needs because of our ‘conditions’? I adore him but im feeling more unwell now than ever and dont know what else i can do ?

      • Beatrix
      • November 30, 2017
      Reply

      My bf got diagnosed with severe ADHD as an adult and also has a severe sleep disorder, which keeps him from being able to work. Within the past few years, he’s gotten more depressed and his fuse has gotten shorter. We get into misunderstandings often and he takes his frustration out on me verbally until I calmly tell him what I’m trying to say, then he usually apologizes or makes me apologize (and I do just to make the argument go away). I also have become more of a caretaker/maternal since he is very messy and needs a lot of emotional care (we are rarely intimate and usually just hug for a few seconds, per his choice). It’s really tough especially since I also have anxiety and he comes from a verbally abusive family (we think his Mom also has ADHD). I love him, but it’s getting harder and harder as he becomes more depressed and feels like he is being victimized. My health has taken a nosedive, too.

        • Meagan
        • December 2, 2017
        Reply

        Hi Beatrix,
        I have been with my boyfriend for 2 years and about 6 months ago we went to couples counseling. He was wuickly diagnosed with ADHD. I also have severe anxiety and we would be a simple discussion turns into a huge fight where our emotions would be extreme. One thing that dramatically helped us is the psychologist has us listening to podcasts on adhd and relationship advice that interest us 2x a week. Then we have to discuss it. Why this has helped is it brings thing from a defensive mindset to more of a learning and team approach. So if i have something that is bothering me…its like bringing a 3rd party in the picture. Maybe try this?

          • Leslie
          • February 11, 2018
          Reply

          What are some of these podcasts? I’m in a similar situation and think this could help.

          • Beatrix
          • December 19, 2017
          Reply

          Thank you! We will try both approaches!

      • ameli
      • November 29, 2017
      Reply

      My boyfriend of 2 years obviously has severe ADHD. He really loves me and he spends a lot of time thinking of how to make me happy and he has been affectionate and loving all the time we have been together. but there is something about him that makes me really more and more frustrated. he is not an attentive listener and our conversation mostly goes off the course because he cracks a joke or blurts out his random irrelevant thoughts when I talk. I pointed out this problem so many times we were both tired of discussing this issue though he agreed many times he will work on it but it seems like he forgets right after he promises and nothing much has changed.. or it seems like he does not get it at all from the beginning.. I feel like he is just in his own head when we have a conversation. He is very witty playful and goofy so he made me laugh a lot in the beginning of our relationship but it seems like it is impossible to have any sort of a serious chat with him and he does not show any interests in any topics that I am interested in at all. I ended this relationship because of this communication problem but he tired so hard to get me back that I could not just walk away so far and I do love him too. the thing is when I suggested medication a few weeks ago, he refused the idea and told me he does not want to change who he is and he loves the way he is. I agreed that I cannot change him or should not force him to take medication . Also he does not trust shrinks and he cannot afford psycho therapy because his work is unstable due to his adhd problem. but I am getting really frustrated these days and it is really stressful to be in his messy life as well. I am turning into a big nag and started getting tired of him…. do you guys have any advice in this situation?

        • Anne
        • March 28, 2018
        Reply

        Ameli and Jo, my advice to both would be to move on. I have been married to a man with ADHD for 28 years, and he refuses to take medication or see a therapist. He is a functional adult in the work world, successful, actually — and believe it or not — is trained in marriage counseling. LOL. But when it comes to our marriage, he is classic ADHD denial. His “efforts” are good enough, he likes himself the way he is, I’m the one with the problem. I have always been the manager of our lives. I cajoled and supported him through all his dark moments when he would have given up his education or his career. I pick up his stuff every day that he forgets to put away. Promises to remember next time will always be broken. He jokes and talks over me. The days of him listening intently to my ideas and opinions were the 1st year we were together. That, I have learned, is the ADHD effect. I was “new” and exciting, like a stimulant medication that allowed him to concentrate on me. Afterward, it’s been all about him. It took me too long to realize that ADHD was the cause of all his bizarre behaviors, because he had never been diagnosed as a child. The only reason I haven’t left yet is our own child, who has special needs and I am home schooling. He is a good dad, and like I said, he provides for our family. But when our child no longer needs an intact family to thrive, I see no reason to stay. Do yourselves a favor now and find a man without ADHD who can be a true adult for the rest of his life, or at least one who admits he has a problem, takes his meds, and will accept counseling.

        • Jo
        • January 24, 2018
        Reply

        Ameli, i am going through the same thing. My boyfriend of 4 years has been diagnosed with ADHD but refuses to take medication. Like you i understand its not my place to force an adult man to do anything, especially take medication. But im at a total loss. I feel lonely, unheard, and unloved. Hes the kindest, most honest man ive ever met – but im unsure if i can spend the rest of my life cleaning up after him and making sure he remembers his socks. Im an ENORMOUS nag and im sure he dislikes me for it, but i dont know how else to get things done. Seems like were at a crossroads and i dont know where to go.

          • Darlene
          • April 6, 2018
          Reply

          I am a spouse of an adhd person who has been married for 28 years . If you are already having frustrations and reservations, that is your que to not make the relationship permanent . Any situation that is an issue now will continue to be an issue and if kids come into the relationship, you now will be taking on this responsibility basically as a single parent. When the spouse doesn’t take care of themselves they won’t/can’t take care of the child and the number of frustrations will increase as he is not able to help in so many ways needed to be a team player in parenting.

      • Saida Jivani
      • November 9, 2017
      Reply

      My boyfriend of 3 years had been diagnosed with ADD as a child. I only found out today after dropping off his stuff after ending the relationship. Our relationship had been a constant on /off. There was no consistency. He was always frustrated with me, always walked out on me whenever I had an opinion,. I felt my feelings didn’t matter at all and everything had to be his way. I tried to adjust, he patient and approach him when it was right to and so on. Everything was always my fault. I love him so much that I was willing to put up with all this, I tried to understand how he worked so I can adjust as no one is perfect. The only issue I have and cannot tolerate anymore is that he texts random girls for attention and every time we have a tiff and he goes on a dating website. He knows it’s all wrong and apologises sincerely when he’s calm but I’ve given him so many chances and it keeps carrying on.
      I have 2 kids from my previous relationship and they already know he’s been texting other girls.
      I’m just not sure if i have to be understanding here or walk away?
      Every time I see texts from other girls, it hurts me so much and he didn’t see anything wrong when he being stubborn. He tells me that I make him do this.

        • Ana
        • January 14, 2018
        Reply

        Leave him is not worth it. I been married with one like that for 18 years they won’t change… same story just walk away . Don’t waste your time. It sucks. Even if he stops it with the other girls for a while it will always be an issue int he relationship.

        • Carrie
        • November 20, 2017
        Reply

        Walk away from this one. It’s just not worth it. Your kids don’t need that drama and he’s not going to change. Don’t fool yourself. You deserve better. I’ve been married for 7 years to someone who sounds just like this. I’m so unhappy
        And he treats me so badly. Our two small children
        Are starting to notice. He doesn’t even realize it! He has ADHD and took meds for it as a child. He won’t seek help now. He’s not going to change. Please save yourself even
        Worse headache and walk away from this guy now.

      • Emma
      • October 23, 2017
      Reply

      Hi everyone, I need advice. Im a 28 years old woman with ADHD and I live with my bf of two years. I was diagnosed as a child and take medicine somewhat regularly I sometimes miss a dose here or there but my main problem is that the medicine usually wears off by the time I leave work and when I get home I get into a lot of fights with my bf about the stupidest things. The only times we don’t fight is if I take my medicine later on in the day so that it doesn’t wear off at night which makes impossible for me to sleep. Ive talked to my dr and tried higher doses and switching meds but they usually will wear off later in the night as they are suppose to and I will say something that he just said or do something like forget my id when we went out for drinks nothing that is a big deal but he turns it into a big deal and just yesterday he told me that he could not take much more of this that he can not deal. I don’t know if maybe he is just trying to get a way out of the relationship and maybe I should move on to be with someone who actually accepts my ADHD that i don’t have to literally take my meds the second I see him so that I don’t do or say something stupid without thinking. We have been living together for over a year and he was always understanding and not rude and mean to me until a few months ago. I wanted to know opinions of how you feel about your ADHD partner when their meds wear off. Are you understanding, judgy, mad, rude, mean? Thank you!

        • Stacey
        • February 4, 2018
        Reply

        Hey Emma leave him!!!! It’s only been a year that’s not right. I’ve been with my husband for 20 years I would get mad at him only if he was mean to me and the kids or didn’t listen and would yell on something he thought he heard or he lied! But his Dr. up his medicine and put him on 2 time release a day. They lasted longer in the later afternoon . I hope that helps

        • Katie
        • January 14, 2018
        Reply

        I’m married to a man who has ADHD. He can be tough after his meds wear off, and I have to act as a wall between him and the kids (because they are the ones who get under his skin the fastest). He sees an ADHD coach now and it has made a big impact in our relationship. (Still working on how the relationship with the kids, but it is progressing). Also, we have been to couple’s therapy with someone who is trained to work with ADHD partners. But, there are also great books out there your bf could read to help him truly understand what ADHD is and how it affects you and your relationship. Partners have to be in on it together, and both be willing to put the work into the relationship. So if he really wants this to work, ask him to please read some books or see a therapist together. Also, if you don’t have coaching, you really should try it out. It has greatly improved my husband’s life.

        • Maia
        • December 26, 2017
        Reply

        Hey, I’m not someone dating a person with ADHD but I do have ADHD and the only thing I have to offer is that switching your medication to something other than a stimulant will help you sleep better. Also I fight with my boyfriend a lot too, so you’re not alone.

      • Mary
      • October 15, 2017
      Reply

      My 72 yr old ADHD boyfriend makes plans with his 11 year old daughter, says he is including me then forgets to call until late in the day, i told him he has such disregard for my feelings, yet he doesn’t get why it’s so hurtful. Is this part of his condition or should I move on?

        • Natasha
        • October 18, 2017
        Reply

        I think its the fact that hes old rather than the fact that he has adhd. Give him a break.

          • Nau
          • November 13, 2017
          Reply

          Natasha,

          It’s a mistake to think that all people who you deem old are forgetful in this way. That’s ageism. In fact, people spend their entire adult life developing and practicing habits, including communication habits. Elderly people still have the habits that they put in place in their earlier adult life. The problem is not that Mary’s boyfriend is 72, it’s that he habitually makes plans, tells his daughter that he will include Mary and habitually doesn’t call Mary, until very late about the event. The issue in following through what he told his daughter he would do is an executive function issue, as Mary describes it, or not having a social habit, it’s not that a 72 year old is “too old.”

        • Mark
        • October 17, 2017
        Reply

        Good question! I would love to know the answer as well!

      • Barb
      • October 12, 2017
      Reply

      Hi all,
      I have been married for 23 years to the love of my life. He was finally diagnosed about 3yrs ago but has had many difficulties with the medication. Last year he decided he would be able to control his various ADD symptoms if you will. Well this summer he decided that he would have a simple fling with a woman..men do it all the time so what was the harm. I would never find out right? Wrong, I found his phone being a problem and he hid the messages until i saw a message from Bradley. I questioned him and he lied. I knew who Bradley was and watched him play this game with me for about 6-8 weeks. He was binge drinking every weekend and ended up with this woman every time. Well here we are now in counselling, he is back on meds and I find myself in a position of anger, crushed, heart broken…etc. You get the picture. He keeps telling me that he can’t think straight and i understand this but betrayal, not cool and I don’t know if i can forgive him. We are not separated but trying to work things out. It is very difficult when the other person has difficulty expressing their feelings. Just yesterday he said that now he is off alcohol, on ADD meds he is thinking clearer. His reckless behaviour is part of ADD but when I fought with him for 6 weeks about what he was doing and hiding his phone, deleting messages I just don’t know if i can go back to him. He is a liar and a cheater. He has broken our bond and destroyed my heart. Can you actually blame this on ADD? I feel like such a fool.

        • Katie
        • January 14, 2018
        Reply

        “He keeps telling me that he can’t think straight…” OK, here is my thoughts on this. I have a husband and child with ADHD. My child sees a therapist to work on her language skills (she also has a processing disorder) and her therapist has taught us to never let her use the excuse that she can’t think straight or her brain is not letting her do things. So, I think if my 7 year old isn’t to use this excuse, your adult husband shouldn’t either.
        ADD is not an excuse for an affair. If he is not taking full ownership for what he has done to you, there is no hope for you to rebuild trust with him or have a relationship worth keeping.

        • Natasha
        • October 18, 2017
        Reply

        His ADD IS NOT an excuse hun. You should go ur seperate ways. U dont need a man like that. I have add and that doesnt make me or anyone else with add the right to cheat on anyone just because we cant think clear. Trust me we cant think clear enough to know that cheating is wrong. His cheating isnt the fault of his condition. Hes just simply a cheater that happens to have ADD. Move on and grow from this and focus on urself and better yourself and be happy. U dont need him 🙂

      • Mark
      • October 12, 2017
      Reply

      Hello everyone, I really need your HELP/ADVICE. I really like this girl and I don’t know if she has ADHD or it is just me not reading the signs. I would move overseas because of her (not a really big deal). There were a lot of signs that she likes me (trust me, some other just random person wouldn’t do that, and I am not talking about sex). But she started changing. I have a feeling that she was doing things that would stop me from liking her (like talking about her ex-es, less physical contact, talking/texting with other guys etc. ). Normally it sounds like, yeah she’s not interested in me anymore. BUT I know that she is taking Aderoll + some sleeping pills, and she also behaves like she’s doing everything really quick…So Idk, is it really me being stupid or should I find a way how to approach her. It is eating me alive. Thanks guys!!!

        • Michele Davis
        • October 19, 2017
        Reply

        She’s displaying symptoms of ADHD…those medications are specifically prescribed for that. Given that she is moving very vastly and displaying lack of emotion, it maybe because she’s not managing her medication correctly. Too high of a dose. The medication somehow has a numbing effect on emotions. She may have time management issues, and addiction to the medication that gets her going. She takes adderall to get that boost and takes sleeping pills to shut her mind off. That shows the adderall is too intense. She can’t handle the come down and either wants more adderall or puts her mind at ease with the downer. Her behaviors seem reckless?

          • Mark
          • October 20, 2017
          Reply

          Thanks for your answer. Yes I would say it maybe borders with reckless, sometimes, like trying to have an argument, making something out of nothing… But it wasn’t like that like 4 months ago. AI heard once you use Ambien and don’t fall asleep, you have tend to do some really crazy things – that would explain some things. But not responding to calls, texts, emails etc? Is it also some kind of a symptom? Also avoiding a physical contact? Another symptom?What approach should I have? It really bothers me, I really want to help her, really care about her. But don’t know how since there’s a distance between us right now.

      • Daniel
      • September 6, 2017
      Reply

      Hey y’all, I’ve just recently started dating someone with ADHD and it’s been kind of stressful.

      There are times where she gets frustrated and takes it out on me, and I know she doesn’t intend to do it. There are instances where she’ll talk about her feelings and come off as if she’s personally attacking me for issues that haven’t even happened.

      It almost feels abusive and I’m not sure how much longer I can be patient and understanding. Are there any solutions to maybe de escalating these issues when they are happening?

        • Johnny
        • October 21, 2017
        Reply

        Yes my fiancé has ADD. It took a good two years for me to kind of figure that out because at first I thought it was abuse, she was reckless, does she care? etc. but I have found a way, at least with my fiancé, that has been working for the last six months. Honestly, you just have to be extremely patient and almost make yourself like air to where her words just passed right through and don’t trigger your anger or frustration or feel like a personal attack.

        Be very kind if you don’t know what to say, then look at her and let her know that you’re listening say things like “I understand”, or “I’m listening, honey”, or “Wow” or “Really?” Sometimes I don’t say anything at all, I just listen, and then she’ll switch off to a different topic altogether. However don’t try to change the topic. What she’s telling you is very important to her so it’s also important to not appear that you’re trying to avoid a topic or change the conversation. Let her kind of just vent and lead the pace of the conversation, just show her that you’re listening and that you can follow it and that her feelings mean so much to me. I even tell her that. I tell her, Honey I can see how important this is to you, and your feelings are important to me so that means this is important to me. Tell me what I can do to help. Tell me what I can do to be a better partner for you.

        Honestly, it takes a lot of selflessness patience, love and extreme kindness to be with someone with ADHD. You’re going to feel overwhelmed. You’re going to feel a little ignored and lonely and frustrated at times but you can’t let that show. You have to be able to just understand that it is a condition and know that but without treating them differently.

        It took me a long time to adjust. She would constantly want to break up and fight over nothing. I thought she would blow up over the smallest little things but keep in mind that it’s not what she’s angry about. It’s how she feels. People with ADD have no emotional regulation, so when something bothers them it really intensely bothers them, or when something is frustrating, their emotions are multiplied.

        When we feel upset or frustrated we can regulate it, we know that he was no big deal it’s kind of a small issue so I don’t need to react so big. Someone with ADD can’t do that. They just know I feel a certain way and therefore I react one way only. There is no regulation.

        So what I’m trying to say is try to allow her to be herself in order for your relationship to work you’re going to have to be the really strong one the loving one the understanding won the patient won the kind won the one who listens. Intern though, I have found that when I do this we don’t fight the day ends on a good note and she loves me back for it. It may not be at those very moments when she’s upset or frustrated or overwhelmed, but she will have moments when she sitting there and she will reflect on how you treat her And those are going to be the moments that she’s going to be so loving and you’re going to say to yourself that she’s worth it.

        • Lori
        • October 10, 2017
        Reply

        She is maybe overwhelmed, and frustration to anger is a nano second. Best is to be loving, and ask “What can I do right now that will make it ok for you?” She desperately wants to be understood, and that you have written here means that you want to understand her. It is not a personal attack – because of her brain going so fast, she needs to get all the words out, and consequently it bubbles out, words tripping over themselves, and she has not had the time to work it out, or use language that is more appropriate. It may be possible that if you ask her to repeat it, that it will come out better, and you will be aware that she needs to slow down… But being loving, and if she likes affection, that will also help. Or send her loving messages on the mobile phone, with a kiss or hugs, or whatever her favourite emoticons / emojis are. That will achieve lots, and she will feel supported. She needs to feel she is supported. Your life will be far happier too. It can be exciting to be in a relationship with a person with an ADHD brain. Try remember, regularly, what brought you two together in the first place – what was it that delighted you?

        • alana
        • September 29, 2017
        Reply

        The best thing to do is not stay in that relationship. Because these people are so charismatic it will always look perfect from an outside perspective but as time goes by you’ll start changing to meet those needs. Then you will find a new normal or trying to fit her needs. This is a great article but I think it is better directed to the people who have ADHD. I’ve been with a man who is well know which makes things harder. I would honestly say do not stick around it wont be worth it in the end. That is if this is a fresh relationship.

      • Kim
      • August 27, 2017
      Reply

      Im in a relationship with my girlfriend she 30 and has 3 kids from her relationship in the past I’m 23 and also a girl. We met last year every was good she was so caring and sweet . When I first meter I didn’t see any problems. Now I’ve moved in with her and her kids, I see a new said to her. She forgetful, she has anger outbrus throwing things. Making the same mistakes Over over again I feel like I need to walk on eggshells . But when it come to her kids she’s so loving she’ll never forget stuff for them. And always puts her kids frist before me. I feel so forgotten about and unloved by her. Being with her is hard she not the same any more .

      Any advice please

        • Lukas
        • August 31, 2017
        Reply

        she was just playing you stupid, plain and simple, women with baggage do that because nobody wants them so they try hard and once they find a guy who falls for this trap, they turn into their usual selves…bad gals, kiss em and dismiss em, get right witchya. It has nuffin to do with ADHD but you being silly.

      • Alma
      • August 23, 2017
      Reply

      Hi, my boyfriend of just over 3yrs has ADHD an so do I. Neither of us are being treated due me not having insurance an he is waiting to see a psychiatrist. I work full time an due to a car accident he is not allowed to work cause of his health. On top of his ADHD he had all 4 hemispheres of his brain severely damaged in the accident. We fight over simple things like cleaning the home, who’s driving when we go somewhere, an we struggle a lot over what to make for dinner or a movie to watch. I will be like I don’t care pick something an he will tell me no you pick something. This will go on sometimes for hrs. Until we give up an end up not watching a movie or we won’t eat. It gets to be really annoying at times. When it comes to anger I have been diagnosed as bi-polar an also suffer from ptsd all along with ADHD. Can someone please help me with trying to figure out how to handle all this. I’m at the giving up stage cause I’m so stressed an aggravated with everything. Also we do both see therapists.

      • Nikkie
      • August 5, 2017
      Reply

      Hi, me and my boyfriend have been together a year. I was informed by his mom that he has ADHD when we first got together. But I thought its no big deal. It wwill not affect our relationship. But I soon found out how serious it is. I’m always very frustrated when trying to explain my feelings. Or just trying to explain anything. We constantly argue because he admit to being wrong but he can’t really grasp how to fix the problems. No matter how many times I actually tell him just what to do to fix our relationship. I know he loves me greatly but I constantly feel unloved because he really Dont know how to be affectionate . I try helping but he also have this ” know it all” attitude. He is a great guy . he Dont cheat. We Dont have issues of that sort . its just that he is constantly confused. About making desicions . he do things without thinking . or say things without thinking and my feelings are constantly hurt. Um trying to hold on but I think his ADHD might be more than I can handle

        • Dawson
        • August 7, 2017
        Reply

        My girlfriend is going through the same situation. I often feel unloved and neglected by her. We’ve tried many times and it seems to work for a little bit but then goes back to normal. I dont know what you’ve tried but if you know anything that might help that would be great.

      • SM
      • August 3, 2017
      Reply

      this was fantastic! thank you. my boyfriend of 2 years has ADHD and recently told me he is depressed. I am supposed to move in with him in 3 weeks and for the last few months he keeps saying that he is not ready for this step. (we are in our early 30s). I feel totally confident but he has been hiding his fear for a while and I am starting to get scared that this will end badly. We have been fighting recently over the move because I don’t feel that he is excited (or as he says, ready), i am not pushing him, we discussed this a year ago, time just flew by!

      Is there anything that I can do to be more supportive? I am a highly sensitive person and I know that I have to manage that and not let the short temper and harsh words during an episode get to me. But adding in the depression, are there any tips? thank you!

        • av
        • August 28, 2017
        Reply

        @SM This may be coming a little late… but ADHD has a veritable TON of things involved in it. I’ve been diagnosed for over 25 years, and it’s still amazing how much it affects my life. I used to think it wasn’t a big deal, but it literally destroys lives. It’s not just simply an impulsive/inattentive disorder. Emotional dysregulation and impairment in information processing are also quite common. I would have you look up Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria, it’s a very common symptom in ADHD sufferers. It can result in depressive symptoms as well (if briefly).

        Remember, he has a physical neurological disorder, it’s not something he can control or change, and there will be some reactions and some effects that are “baked in” as it were. He needs to see a psychiatrist and begin treatment for it, so he can manage his symptoms and gain a better control of his mind. I went unmedicated for nearly 20 years, and I think it probably did more harm than I can imagine.

      • Sue
      • July 17, 2017
      Reply

      I hear the desperation and pain in the non-adhd partners over and over but see little addressing this with compassion. The pain , isolation, loneliness, and loss of identity that is so common in them sorely needs tending to. It seems most “professional advice” focuses on understanding your ADD mate and stresses having compassion for them, which is needed, and I totally agree with, but still leaves the non-add partner wounded, hopeless, and starving for a connected reciprocal relationship. How about more tools and tips for the ADD person to learn how to improve their relationship techniques to meet their partners needs also? They are mostly exhausted and many have hung in there out of their love for their spouse.

      • Reply

        Hi Everyone! It’s me, June, the author of this article. Sue, you’re so right. The non-ADHD partner is often the one who is left starving for connection, involvement, and love in return. Ideally, both partners are putting in the same effort to maintain a healthy relationship, but that doesn’t always happen. You can’t change another person, you can oly change yourself. I know that’s frustrating but sadly, it’s true. The good news is… when you change how you think, feel, and act towards your ADHDer, he/she will respond to your attitude. Influence with love, not anger. I know that’s easier said than done, but it’s the only thing that really works.

          • Johnny
          • October 21, 2017
          Reply

          Thank you so much for this article. I have researched for years to try to find answers to what was happening or what was going on but I agree with the article 100%. I love my fiancé for who she is and understanding what She has has allowed me to do that. Only with understanding could I have helped myself heal from the wounds of an ADD person. Now that I know that I was not hurt intentionally, allows me To be more loving limitlessly and unconditionally and more true to her. She in turn now, appreciates me more as someone who finally gets her. She is 39 years old and was single when I met her for years for most of her life. But now that she found someone who could understand and show that understanding daily with her, I have made her the happiest she’s ever been. It took tons of patience, self-control on my part, understanding, empathy, compassion, kindness, And unconditional love to get where we are in our relationship. But it also speaks volumes for those who love their 80 department, because we can show them what true love really is, that they Can be understood. And it can be so refreshing to them.So thank you for this Article it speaks volumes to me.

          • SC
          • September 15, 2017
          Reply

          I’m so glad I found this article. But I wonder the same thing, and what can I do or say that will make a big impact. I’ve been in a relationship for over 3 years. We have been long distance the whole time. For a period I lived in another state and now we are just a few hours away. I know he is trying in his own way. But previously he had broken up with me because he felt he couldn’t give me everything I wanted. He went from being very attentive, wanting to touch me and hold hands to finally breaking down one day when I was rubbing his arm that he actually doesn’t like being touched and he doesn’t know why. Its a feeling of scared of rejection but at the same time he knows I love him and want to be with him. Its like he has put up a wall but when it comes to the bedroom its different. On top of that he is struggling with the commitment to actually move to where I live since my job doesn’t allow me to move there. He keeps telling me he cares and makes sure he keeps our communication on a daily basis and sees me when he can or visa versa. I know he wont go on medication, but how do I talk to him about it so that we can work together? I feel like whenever I try and talk to him he feels overwhelmed and nagged.

      • Alicia
      • June 20, 2017
      Reply

      Hi everyone! It was great to read this. I often feel alone in all this. Even my own mother does not understand what I am going through. After being married for seven years, we have come to realize my husband might be struggling with ADD. I had suspected something was going on a couple years ago. We own two homes, two kids (3 yrs, 2 months), two cats, a dog, and we both work full time. There is always a lot going on.

      He is active duty military for 16 years, so we are a bit concern with having the diagnosis and how it might impact his career. Anyone have any experience with this?

      He struggles with insomnia and loves playing video games. Are these things at all related to coping with ADD/ADHD?

        • Jess
        • July 14, 2017
        Reply

        Alicia,

        Very similar to my/our circumstance. My husband is also active duty and in for 16 years. He was diagnosed with ADHD when he was a preteen. He is not on medication. Every bit of our relationship has been a battle. We do everything on his schedule. I was always a very organized, prompt, and responsible person. If there are decisions that takes two of us, it will take a very long time to get it done. It has been extremely frustrating. My husband plays video games as well, all the time. It is the only thing he does.

          • Kay Tee
          • August 22, 2017
          Reply

          Perhaps your husband releases tension, resentment and stress by playing video games.

      • Linda
      • June 18, 2017
      Reply

      My boyfriend of two months has adhd and has many female friends. He won’t stop getting calls and calling these women. I feel that we are a couple now, that this should stop. He still is friends with his ex’s
      also. Doe’s he do this because he has low self esteem, and needs the attention. He says he won’t change. Should I stop seeing him? He stops and talks to everyone he passes by, mostly women. I think this is rude. I may as well not be standing there, because he ignores me and keeps talking to the women. He says he will keep his women friends. I need advice please.

        • Brown
        • September 29, 2017
        Reply

        Not an ADHD issue. He’ s just disrespectful.

        • Amanda
        • August 2, 2017
        Reply

        I have the exact same problem that you have with my boyfriend. I think its inappropriate for him to be texting and communicating with his ex gf and he is constantly checking out other women in front of me which i feel is so disrespectful. He tells me I am just a jealous person and i often feel like i am crazy. I wish someone would have a good answer for this behavior

      • Aleksandra
      • April 11, 2017
      Reply

      Dear all thank you for this amazing support and for sharing experinces. I have been with my boyfriend for six years. From the moment I met him I could see that he is strugling and that his behaviour is not “normal”. It took me three long years to make him free enough to ask for professional help. I have realised very early that his problems surpass my knowledge to help and understand. Eventually he got diagnosed with ADHD but only when he saw that the problem is so big that is not allowing him a functional day to day life. When he was diagnost due to a very stresfull period in my life I couldn’t fully invest myself in understanding everything that comes with it. He has left me just few days ago. He said that I am destructive for him because I am too successful and he can’t cope with the passive pressure my everyday succes (even as small as getting out of bed) and that that worsens his state. I still want us to work out but it is very difficult when the other side chosses not to work as a part of the team. Did you ever experince this kind of response from your ADHD partner? And how do you define the time when you simply give up?

        • Sheree
        • April 26, 2017
        Reply

        I’m struggling too.
        As for my hubby, I have been with him for 11 year’s this October. And I don’t know how much more I can take. It’s hard. I feel so alone. I have been asking for us to get help for a couple of year’s now but my hubby thinks he can help himself. If I leave him it won’t be because we have so many problems in our relationship, it’ll be because he makes the same handful of mistake repeatedly. I have 2 children with him though ( a 5 yr with adhd and a 2 year old) and I don’t want to hurt anyone. I’ll stay with him but I’m not sure if we’ll ever be happy. Maybe if he gets help things might change.

        6 year’s is a long time to be with someone. I hope you both can figure it out.
        If not we both need to remember that we deserve to be loved and appreciated.!

      • Jacqueline Welsh
      • March 14, 2017
      Reply

      Just today my boyfriend told me that he has ADHD. We’ve been dating for two years, and it kind of bothers me that just now he is deciding to tell me. I had no clue before he even mentioned it. I feel like I’m looking at him differently now, even though I love him the same. I hope his condition won’t affect our relationship; it hasn’t in the past. Now that I know, I’m just a little worried. How should I fix this situation?

        • Yohan
        • April 1, 2017
        Reply

        Hi Jacqueline,

        I think I have ADHD just like your boyfriend. I’ve found this about me for last 1+ years and it start to make sense why after reading this:

        http://www.healthline.com/health/adhd/three-types-adhd#overview1

        ADHD is divided into three different types:

        inattentive type
        hyperactive-impulsive type
        combination type

        People who experience inattentive behavior often:

        miss details and are distracted easily
        get bored quickly
        have trouble focusing on a single task
        have difficulty organizing thoughts and learning new information
        lose pencils, papers, or other items needed to complete a task
        don’t seem to listen
        move slowly and appear as if they’re daydreaming
        process information more slowly and less accurately than others
        have trouble following directions

        People who are impulsive or hyperactive often:

        squirm, fidget, or feel restless
        have difficulty sitting still
        talk constantly
        touch and play with objects, even when inappropriate to the task at hand
        have trouble engaging in quiet activities
        are constantly “on the go”
        are impatient
        act out of turn and don’t think about consequences of actions
        blurt out answers and inappropriate comments

        If you have the combination type, it means that your symptoms don’t fit inattention or hyperactive-impulsive behavior.

        Most people, with or without ADHD, experience some degree of inattentive or impulsive behavior. But it’s more severe in people with ADHD. The behavior occurs more often and interferes with how you function at home, school, work, and in social situations.

        I’m pretty sure you have witnessed/dealt with some of symptoms/behavior listed above from your boyfriend. Go to the link that I’ve mentioned and print them out and discuss with your boyfriend 1 on 1 to see if he can point out some of behaviors that he is having. It is all about learning about each other.

        Questions for you:
        1. Why is this bothers you?
        2. How his condition changed/effected you?
        3. Are you going to fix him or his condition?
        4. Are you going to accept him for who he is (unconditionally)?
        5. What is “your” definition of love?

        I hope your relationship with your boyfriend to last. If it hasn’t affect in the past, I’m pretty sure that it own affect you that much because it didn’t. Now you will know more about his conditions, you will understand him more and that will make your relationship to grow.

        • Jackson Hulgan
        • March 19, 2017
        Reply

        Wait wtf? You didn’t even know he had it and didn’t expect it this whole time. That’s *&?$! you think you should look at him differently now. He hasn’t changed.

      • Graham
      • March 8, 2017
      Reply

      My gf with ADHD had cheated on me in the past, we worked through it and things are going great now, but it is still a concern of mine that it may happen again. Does anyone have advice on this or how I could help her to avoid doing this without being controlling or not wanting her to go anywhere without me? How can I hold her interest?

        • will
        • April 19, 2017
        Reply

        Ive been dating my girlfriend for a year now and she has ADHD. Honestly, I would let your girlfriend know how you feel and IMO I don’t really think you can help her “avoid” cheating. I would think that would come down to her and how she wants to handle her life. If she “can’t help it” then I would advise you to move on because its just going to end up eating you up alive in the end.

        I think that is more of a trust thing between you and her and open communication. I know that must be hard for you as I have been cheated on before. ( not with current girlfriend)

      • Brandy Olsen
      • February 21, 2017
      Reply

      Ok I have ADHD, to the point that when I went in to reviewed as an adult, he said there are not letters big enough to describe the level of it.

      I’m kind caring and loving. But I am quick to fight. Well was.

      My boyfriend of almost 7 years loves me anyway. We have good communication. One thing he never does is make it seem like there is something wrong with me.

      He also has ADD. He has never been clinically diagnosed but we are aware of it. I am not on meds nor is he.

      Sometimes I think that all the non ADHDers want us to conform to their way of thinking and processing things and by them doing that it sets off a downward spiral for us. I do not process emotions the same as others, and not even the same way as he does.

      I have read all the comments here. Some of you are in the right track to a healthy relationship and others I wonder why you are in it. Its not about who is right or who is wrong. Nor is a relationship about pointing out faults of another. A healthy relationship is about knowing how the other one works and helping them to thrive.

      I have shown him many articles and he gets me. He understands that when I say something cold and callus that my intention is not to cause pain, just the opposite. I am short and to the point. ADHD does NOT cause someone to be abusive nor is it a excuse for doing bad things that is all on the person doing it with or without tbe ADHD they would probably do it. It drives me batty when someone says “I have ADHD thats why.” That is a cop out.

      I struggle daily to work through mundane daily tasks they bore me. But I reward myself by letting my brain go free once complete.

      Here is an article that I truly love because why should we have to change for you non ADHDers we process things faster we can handle things in a high stress sittiation we can juggle more things at one time without anxiety. I’m truly sorry for those of you who think that you love your partners in the manner to spend a lifetime with them. But that kind of does not see anything as a problem.ot is seen as a part of the person you love to end of time. We have our struggles but the ADD/ADHD is not one of them. We are raising 3 beautiful girls in a blended family, at our farm. Im not saying that there is no love there with those of you that view it as a “problem” but my daughters dad can attest that the love we have is not one to sustain a marriage lasting a lifetime hence he is an ex. He noticed to many of the traits that make me me. http://m.additudemag.com/site/additudemag1/articleredone?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.additudemag.com%2Fadhd%2Farticle%2F10117-2.html#2922
      Seriously check this article out. This site is wonderful as well. I have had ADHD since birth. And 2 of the 3 girls have it as well. True ADHDERS are brilliant I mean like almost Einstein brilliant. But we get board with the hum drum of non-ADHDERS and their expectations put on us. Maybe there is something wrong with them? Just kidding it takes all kinds to make the world go round but the lump in throat you got after reading that sentence is how we feel when someone that is supposed to love us for us says we are wrong. God made me this way so this way i stay.
      So many people say that they have never met someone like me and how refreshing it is to have conversations with me. Because of the honest to the point conversations we have. I guess God knows what he is doing after all.

        • loveherADDman
        • September 22, 2017
        Reply

        So what you’re saying with “when I say something cold and callus that my intention is not to cause pain, just the opposite. I am short and to the point. ADHD does NOT cause someone to be abusive nor is it a excuse for doing bad things” is that you’re copping out by being cold and callous? Sure, God made you the way you are, but you’re copping out by saying that it’s everyone else who needs to change.

        • Tina
        • March 23, 2017
        Reply

        this is beautiful. thanks for sharing!

      • NZ
      • January 3, 2017
      Reply

      Hi there

      I believe my partner may have ADD or ADHD, I’m not sure if the difference.

      I believe if I even suggested this to home he would fly off the handle with me.

      Has anyone ever been in this situation?

      I’m so worried it will damage our relationship if I suggest it to him.

        • lovisa
        • January 26, 2017
        Reply

        Hi,
        I’m in the exact same situation. I tried to tell him, and he took it quite well. But since then (a month ago) nothing has happened and we haven’t talked about it again. We have an amazing relationship for what I would say two weeks at a time, and then something happens – usually I am criticising something he did or didn’t do, but it can just be a small comment and it starts. (he has problem with money, organizing, and many other common ADHD traits). I feel as if I’m very understanding and try not to loose temper, but I also feel that I have to be allowed to criticize/say how I feel when I think he has done something wrong… but it never leads to any good. I don’t know how I should deal with these situations. It feels like he can’t understand how I feel, and I don’t know how to communicate it because he just misunderstands everything I say.

        • Mary
        • January 16, 2017
        Reply

        Hi I feel the same way with my significant other as well, but I learned how to pick the “right timing” with him its usually in the evening and best for us (cause we live together just the two of us no external family etc) I wait also for his “card night” he plays cards with 7 other men in a poker league he has known most of these men all his life so he is always “at ease” when they come over to the house, we host it 2 x a week. So I just mentioned it to him quickly as he was “passing by” the hall way to the mens room and he was neutral about it so at least i planted the seed maybe if you find the right time for your significant other it may help “ease the blow” if you will……Hope that helps feel free to email me if you want thanks Mary

      • Ashtin
      • January 1, 2017
      Reply

      Hi, I’m a 16 year old Boy with a loving girlfriend, however we seem to get into fights over stuff here and there. These fights eventually accumulated into her being damaged emotionally, I love and care for her very much. But I keep making mistakes because I have trouble thinking before doing. She acknowledges that I have ADHD & Aspergers, but there is only so much pain she can handle. I’m asking this now because I don’t know where I can get a definite answer, is there any way I can help change myself to fix these problems.
      I absolutely hate hurting her emotionally, and I want to work hard to fix these.

        • Kristina
        • January 8, 2017
        Reply

        Hey, Ashtin,

        it’s really sweet of you to acknowledge that some of your actions may be hurting the girl you love. Most young people would not have this insight until they are well into adulthood. I would say, educate yourself about your ADHD and Asperger’s online, and if you can, get a professional counsellor on board to assist you to identify your patterns: things that make you act impulsively, what is really going on for you when you appear acting thoughtless, how you can give yourself some time before you make a decision that your girlfriend finds helpful and how the two of you can find a way to move forward together. Getting a professional person who spent years learning about ADHD (and may even have it themselves!) will save you a lot of time and heartache.

        • NZ
        • January 3, 2017
        Reply

        Hi there

        After reading up on the symptoms of ADHD I believe my partner may have this.

        I really don’t think I could even suggest it to him as believe he would fly off the handle with me.

        I think it would be damaging to our relationship for me to suggest it.

        Has anyone here had to suggest it to a partner who may not have considered this for themselves?

        Thank you

      • Sarah
      • December 22, 2016
      Reply

      Dude this explains so much…I wish I hadn’t felt so scared and isolated in dealing with my ex with ADHD… I really didn’t understand him well enough I realize now…it’s really tough to be aware and accepting of these problems and not take stuff personally or wonder if someone is trying to use the ADHD title to get away with things. I really loved that guy though, even through the chaos I experienced I don’t feel he was a bad person. He just had so many issues and I felt like I was falling apart after awhile…it’s sad the way things work out…thanks for this discussion guys I learned a lot reading your responses…

      • Nancy
      • December 18, 2016
      Reply

      I am the wife of a man with undiagnosed ADHD or ADD — this was suggested to me by my therapist after I started to share some of my difficulties in dealing with him. I finally brought it up and he has been defensive and not willing to read much about it. I feel that I am doing all the adjusting in the marriage, while he implies I am being too critical. I am very stressed out (my job demands a lot of time and thought) — I am the primary wage earner (he is retired on a very small pension). I feel like I am married to a teenager and dealing with him (forgetting things, losing important things, being late, not listening well to me, not being very attentive to me, etc. etc.) is really stressing me out. I have told him we must go to a counselor who understands ADD/ADHD and its implications for marriage. I think things would improve if he was actually diagnosed and he started to take responsibility for dealing with it. I think he is OK with seeing a therapist in the new year, but again, I will need to make all the arrangements, etc. How can I start to appreciate him more and yet deal with the real problems he creates because of the symptoms of ADD/ADHD? Again, a big problem is that I don’t have too much energy left to deal with additional stress. I cannot wait to retire in six and a half years, but that will be a long time. He is ten years older than me (I am in the late 50s, he in his late 60s) — we haven’t been married but just five years and I want our older years to be happy together.

        • Mary Simkins
        • January 1, 2017
        Reply

        Nancy,
        I have been married to my husband for 24 years and he has ADD. 9 years ago when our son was diagnosed with ADD I started reading a lot about it and realized my husband also has ADD. It was a huge relief to know there was a reason for his negative behavior and I thought that he would see himself in all of the information we had on ADD, he would get diagnosed and treated. Instead he denied he had ADD. We were already in family & couples counseling. It took 9 years for the therapist to get him to the point where he would answer the self assessment questions honestly & for him to admit he has ADD. Like you I was under a lot of stress. I have a Severe case of fibromyalgia and was like a single mother. After being diagnosed my husband refused to address his ADD & continued to blame me for all of the problems in our marriage. I had previously talked privately with our therapist about divorcing my husband. The final straw was his refusal to take responsibility for his ADD & the negative fall out of its symptoms. I met with the therapist and told him that I could no longer take my husband’s behavior and that if he did not get treatment for his ADD and change I was truly going to divorce him. Stress aggravates fibromyalgia. Even though I am good at managing stress the level with my husband had gotten so high it caused the fibromyalgia to flair so much that I could not get out of bed. I told my husband that I was at the point where I had to choose to take care of myself and that I would divorce him. He got an ADD coach and started working on self awareness with our therapist. In spite of this, he is not using the tools he is being given to manage his ADD and moodiness. My husband is 62 &I’m 56. The only thing I can say is that it has helped me to work with a therapist. I have changed the way I communicate with my husband and learned not to take anything he says or does personally. This has not improved our marriage because my husband just keeps refusing to work on himself. I love my husband very much. I want to have a good relationship with him. Sadly, I do not believe he will put in the work. I believe our marriage will end in divorce because life is so much easier for me when we are not together. So take care of yourself and do what is best for you. Love alone cannot sustain a marriage . I wish I could offer better advice but if he refuses to admit that he has ADD he will not change. Good luck , Jane

          • lisa
          • January 28, 2017
          Reply

          Nancy, I really feel your pain. I have been with my husband for 13 years and only married for one. I knew all along he had ADHD (which is undiagnosed or should I say he is unwilling to admit). But I could handle it until we were married. I have RA which also has flare ups during stressful times. Since we got married and are together all the time now (he retired in June 2016) I have been barely able to get out of bed some days due to physical pain. I am so tired of having to explain myself constantly, being told how controlling I am (because I am organized),. I am just sick at how all of this has turned out! He refuses to even take natural supplements because he doesn’t believe there is a problem. You are right, Love alone cant sustain a marriage. It has to be a partnership. Being a partner to someone who has untreated/not admitted ADHD is very hard. I wish you well

      • Charlotte
      • November 11, 2016
      Reply

      I have ADHD and I started medication two weeks ago. ADHD is not something a lot of people know about around here. I have been dating for 8 months now. Tried to get my partner to read more about the condition so as to help him understand me more and why I do some of the things I do. But every time I want to, I feel like he’s going to think I am using it as an excuse to not accept my mistakes. Which I do, but I just wish he would take that into consideration.

      Often when I try to explain how his actions and words make me feel he gets defensive as if I’m condemning his actions. But I just want to be clear on what he means so I know how to adjust my emotions because they are constantly overwhelming. We argue too much and I dont know how to get him to understand. I dont think he fully understands me and I dont know how to make him without seeming to shift the blame to “ADHD”

        • Fiona
        • March 6, 2017
        Reply

        Charlotte,

        I would advise you to be truthful about your shifting the blame onto ADHD. If you are honest you do shift the blame to ADHD when something ADD-y happens. Every ADD person does this and then swears up and down that they don’t blame ADD for what happened but they fully take responsibility for their actions. Just be truthful. Isn’t it the fact that you have ADD responsible for your lack of attention, (list other symptoms here)? So be truthful…then present a possible solution. One that has NOTHING to do with him. Not him reading about it…not him chasing an answer for you…nothing! Let me repeat that…1. Be Truthful – Yep, that was ADD Bullshit (you hate it too…don’t lie about that either), 2. Present a Solution (THAT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH HIM). Example…messy house…dishes up to the ceiling, clothes everywhere, general ADD-iness exploded in your house! Solution: Hire housekeeper. Can’t afford one…cancel cable…cancel internet…cancel extras. Put your money where your mouth is. All Non-ADD people like myself understand this, but the biggest thing we do not tend to understand is lying, insistance that WE need to deal with something that’s your problem (once or twice is fine, but its ALL the time). Please admit that your life cannot be “complicated”. Keys put in SAME place everyday is a routine. Too many things dependent on your ability to remember them is NOT how to lead a successful life….ie: finances…get auto-pay. Restrict, limit, set boundaries, put up successful solutions around yourself so that you stay focused on the few things you have to make your life happy. This may not help…by now ADD has kicked in and your checking your FB. (Please laugh at this crap…it’s funny! If this were a Woody Allen movie or British humor…everyone would get it and laugh with you. Take it one issue at a time and present yourself a solution. Good Luck Charlotte! I am a straight foward woman so I packed some punches in here, but I sincerely believe you can do it! 🙂

        • Scott
        • November 28, 2016
        Reply

        Hello,

        I am a male with ADHD and I have been dating my girlfriend for about 6 months now (she does not have ADHD). I was only recently diagnosed and this is the first relationship I am in since having been diagnosed and I found that there are many internal struggles I face. The biggest issue I have faced so far has been that I take offense very easily to things that my girlfriend says and when that happens I feel like I overreact or shutdown and my girlfriend doesn’t know why.

        It takes me a lot longer to process what is being said to me for two reasons: (1) I have to consider that my girlfriend is not out to get me or to upset me and maybe the ADHD is to blame for taking something the wrong way or not being able to control my initial reaction; (2) I have to take a step back sometimes and consider whether my reaction is how a person without ADHD would react. My concern is that eventually I will blame all of my reactions to my ADHD which completely absolves my girlfriend of saying offensive or hurtful things and just makes me blame myself even more for “messing up”.

        While it is sometimes difficult to do at the time, I have found the best thing to do is to immediately ask what she meant by what she was saying. Without blaming the ADHD for feeling upset or offended I am trying to figure out what the intent was in what my girlfriend said rather than assume the worst. THIS IS VERY DIFFICULT TO DO!! but I have found that it makes it easier in terms of communication and easier on the relationship (so far).

        I have been very lucky that my girlfriend is willing to work on things with me and try new techniques for communication. She has probably read more on ADHD than I have at this point and I have read a lot about it. If you have been able to overcome other symptoms of ADHD (i.e., being on time to events, sticking to a schedule, etc.) I have a good feeling that this communication issue can be resolved as well. Having said that, if anybody has experienced similar situations and figured out a way to resolve or at least lessen the frequency of outbursts/lack of communication, please reply to this post.

          • Mia
          • January 2, 2017
          Reply

          Hello,
          I am also been in a relationship with someone who has ADHD. My fiancé has ADHD and I don’t. I completely understand what your saying. As a woman I knew I wanted to be with my fiancé even though, he had ADHD. I took the time to learn about, find videos that was easy for him to understand and for myself, I watch videos being the non ADHD partner with a male with ADHD. I will just say I read it all. Still, no matter how much you read it’s all about the experience. As a woman I had to realize 1) this isn’t a “normal” relationship because my partner has an illness that creates challenge in his life. 2) The communication isn’t the same. I had to learn that I have to make things simple, get straight to the point so, he understands what I’m saying and what I mean. My partner had to understand when I criticize him I am not trying to hurt him rather, I am saying it because I know he can do better no matter what condition he is. 3) Mediation is important and sometimes , I have to remind him to take it maybe, give it to him. If I don’t do this it could be Hell. Yeah, it may sound childish to do that or irresponsible but, sometimes you have to out those thoughts aside and realized the significant and afdsxt of one not taking their medication. 4) I realized our relationship wnt be always 50-50 sometimes I may have to pick up the slack but, as long as my man tries his best to do the best he can than I accept that… We both have challenges and their some things I can’t and he can’t do but, we are a team.
          Lastly the most important techniques I could give you watch what you say because words hurt, walk away from an argument because is it worth breaking up over something so little and if it is important remember I live this because so, why would I want to hurt them. Love doesn’t hurt. l
          Also give the partner who has ADHD time. Make sure you let them know that they are important. If you are a busy person and your not willing to give up some time, change your ways, and adapt for them well, you shouldn’t be with them. People with ADHD are so authentic , specially a man, because when they truly love you they will do anything for you to make you happy. Yes, they can be implusive, rude, argumently but, if you honest, truthful, and straight forward it will be okay

          • Sharon
          • December 3, 2016
          Reply

          I recently found out my boyfriend has adhd and we lack on communication now i always end up to wait and many times he has wanting go out and never does anx yes it upsets me and ge knows that, what should i do? Ihave cared so much about him i want us to work my heart is in love with him

        • j
        • November 21, 2016
        Reply

        Hello,

        I am male and I have ADHD, my girfriend does not. We’ve been dating 3 years. The reason I’m replying is because I want you to know that I have the same issues with asking for understanding, and it’s because every time I’ve done it in the past people have only considered it an excuse for my mistakes. People hate it when others don’t own up to their mistakes, but no one would blame someone with down syndrome, or autism. The problem is that our neurological disorder is just discrete enough that we seem perfectly healthy and normal to neuro-typical people. In reality it’s kinda like we’re slightly mentally retarded, but juuust enough so that people think it’s our own fault for not trying. Maybe people 100 years from now will read this thread, and it will serve as a reminder just how barbaric people were when it came to having compassion for people with ADHD. I wouldn’t be surprised if more than half the population still thinks ADHD is fake.

          • Kat
          • September 14, 2017
          Reply

          Exactly J! Even though we have evidence that it is a neurological disorder, people still try to down play ADHD. There are scans and various tests to prove the diagnosis, but people still want to treat those with ADHD differently than others.

          • Christina
          • February 20, 2017
          Reply

          You nailed it. That is the biggest issue. The stuff our brain hands us to struggle with daily is pretty much the same thing as a neurotypical simply having a bad day., or someone who is really not interested in trying to live an organized life. So people think that is the issue, but really, we want to be organized, not be so impulsive, easily overwhelmed, etc., but our neurochemistry gets in the way in ways that people can’t see.

      • Anonymous
      • October 28, 2016
      Reply

      My boyfriend has ADHD, ADD, and a slight bipolar disorder. He’s is constantly unable to sleep until 4 in the morning because he claims that his brain can not slow down long enough for him to fall asleep. This results in him sleeping until 2 or 3 in the afternoon leaving him in a very pissy mood and making him feel like he’s constantly out of time. I will often come over to him having very angry bursts and he’ll start punching and breaking items laying around. It’s absolutely terrifying. I don’t see why he has to get so angry at everything i.e. his phone acting up, the shoe he tripped over, or towels on the floor. He is constant calling random objects bitches or whores just out of pure frustration. I just don’t understand. Several times a week I’ll come over to see him and his room is an absolute wreck and he hasn’t done laundry in a whole month. I take the innative to clean up his clothes and the numerous food plates that are laying around the room, from the previous week. I clean up after him because what takes me 7 minutes to do, it takes him 45, I also can’t risk him getting so frustrated and being pissed for the rest of the day becuse of something so small. He’s always on his phone, all the damn time, it infuriates me when I’m trying to have a conversation with him while he’s checking his sports news. I bought him a very nice satchel bag to keep his keys, phone, wallet, etc in, but he’s still loosing things left and right. He claims that he can’t sit down long enough to read his school textbooks or even ADD help books. It’s affecting his ability to even do college and his ADHD has made him depressed becuse he doesn’t feel like he’s able to get anything done successfully. Don’t get me wrong, he’s the kindest, most loving, and the sweetest person to me. But every day I feel like I’m constantly having to help take care of him. I’ve read my eyes dry with AAD and ADHD help books, but nothing seems to help. I’ve done every single things which those books suggest. Is there anyone who has more experience in helping a loved one with their disabilities, who can help me? It wouldn’t be much much appreciated, I feel like I’m trying and fail every day.

        • Fiona
        • March 6, 2017
        Reply

        I’m sorry to say this to you, but do not feel that because you have fallen in love for this person that you need to stay and be his mother (which I’m sure he resents). Fast forward 10 years in your mind…what do you see? If you say much of the same you are deluding yourself into thinking this is not going to get worse. This gets worse with age because you have now become the enabler. Good luck with this, but my response is to care for yourself and leave this person. Not all people with ADD makes the sorts of choices he has decided to make. Some actually do their own dishes…some actually put away their own towels…some actually buy flowers for you just because…Some actually allow take their meds so that they can have the clearest thought they can and usually that clear thought involves you. Leave.

        • Exhausted
        • December 1, 2016
        Reply

        WOW! This sounds like my life – I live with my boyfriend of 3 1/2 years and he’s known about his ADD since high school but only a year ago started to see a doctor and taking meds. Besides bipolar though, he has the whole sha-bang of neurotransmitter problems. On top of ADD and bipolar, he has severe depression, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (also known about since he was diagnosed in high school) and gets some weird hypoglycemic (but it’s not caused by sugar, they’ve ruled out that) problem and crashes – literally, he has wrecked on a bike because all of a sudden he had an episode and passed out. He has bad addiction problems and before he got on his ADD meds he had the most extreme mood swings I’d ever seen. His body can not keep Vit D (poor eating habits/addictions there he won’t work on) in his system and so his mood swings get worse in the winter when it gets dark. His doctors told him he has to take vit d supplements every day, all year around, but he hasn’t since last spring. So now its dark once again he’s a TERROR to live with. Its been a fight for two months now to get him to acknowledge the bipolar. His ADD doctor, on their first meeting, sent him home with papers to research bipolar type II. I found them Dec of last year, and ever since then I’ve been pulling my hair out. He won’t work on any of his ADD/bipolar issues that are massively affecting our relationship. I’ve known for a year that the bipolar was resulting in us having huge fights, but didn’t realize that every other problem we have boils down to the ADD problems until last week I stumbled onto the website http://www.additudemag.com and read about how everyone else with an ADD partner has the same problems we do. Today I found the webpage:
        http://www.drhallowell.com/overview-of-how-adhd-affects-relationships/
        and again my mind is blown. He’s been telling me that I’m crazy and just a b**ch this whole time so I was sooo relieved and immediately started feeling better after finding those websites. However, I’ve been asking him to look at all this stuff for the last week but he won’t. He says he wants to break up unless we go to counseling, but as I’ve tried to point out, if he’d look into everything I’ve found it would explain a lot, and if he isn’t willing to look at this info and work on his ADD problems, then counseling is just a waste of money. He just thinks the doctors can give a miracle cure that he won’t have to put any time or energy into. He doesn’t want to have to make any effort dealing with his issues, not even looking at websites (even though he’s on his phone on FB and ‘click bait’ naked girl articles all the time) But he won’t look at these websites and this breaks my heart. He doesn’t put any work or effort into our relationship past sitting on the couch and watching TV together – constantly, all the while he’s on his phone. This is a relationship to him. His bipolar is rampant and everytime he drinks its like satan appears. He has such addiction/crutch problems. He feels the need to drink, do drugs, or abuse cough medicine to help him deal with his issues instead of working on them constructively and acknowledging the problems. (The combo of anti-depressants and ADD meds his doctors have told him not to drink on at all, and he’s not suppose to do drugs in order to keep his ADD meds, he gets piss tested for them.) I’ve done a ton of research on all of his issues, and nothing has helped me get through to him either, if things seem to be getting better he gets tired of having to make an effort and goes right back to the same old. All my friends have been asking why I stay with him when he is emotionally draining and unhealthy, goes crazy bipolar on me, and I say the same thing. He’s sweet and so kind, and we think so much alike on things. He just recently went back to school and I was so excited that he’d be happy to be doing something he like. Boy was I wrong. He’s using school and work as an excuse to be a giant jerk and not do anything else. He’s not even going full time and he can barely handle it. He basically uses all of his other responsibilities to justify not putting any effort into his responsibilities in our life together – helping with the home, pets, or our relationship. I’m just so tired and sick of all this drama from him & his problems & yet he won’t even TRY…

        • Anonymous
        • November 8, 2016
        Reply

        Make him wake up in the morning daily because the daily battle he does for not waking up on time make him frustrated and losing his selfesteem too, give him some work or goals to do throughout the day that he needed to complete it at the end of the day, tasks need to be light and few to start with, also make him focus on one thing at a time before jumping onto another tasks. Explain him cleaning is important for him to be productive, and relax ask him to do some meditation, walk or light excersice in the morning. Healthy food help too like eating oatmeal in the morning oatmeal soothing and keep mind calm..Being angry is only hurting him and his effectiveness of being productive…force him to sleep on time tell him the benefits of sleeping on time set the sleep target 2 hours earlier than the orginal time of sleeping and also remove all electronics include iphone, tabs, laptop, tv, games 3 hours before bed, it stimulates the brain and give mind another reason to keep it active and awake..make room more romantic to sleep in, he need to keep himself clean and the house clean ask him donot procrastinate do things rightaway..it will help him focus on his textbook too ( though for adhd textbooks bores them thats why its hard for them to keep their interest) i know things are easier said than done but he can get better by putting effort in making his routines are really good for ADHD

      • judy
      • October 20, 2016
      Reply

      I have been married almost 35 years,and have wanted to leave our marriage so often the past 20 years. My husband has never been properly diagnosed with ADHD but i know he has it. He talks non stop and my patience is running out, I will ask him not to invite company for dinner and 20 minutes later someone comes to the door and he says if you have not had dinner yet come on in. We continually fight over stupid things and he really does’nt see that he is wrong. He drinks more than he would like to and I know he does this to calm himself down. His legs are always moving when he is trying to sit still.
      I know I need to be more understanding of this, I wonder if he should have a proper diagnosis.

      • LCD
      • October 18, 2016
      Reply

      Wow its wonderful to read all these comments! I relate so much! My husband forgets agreements, which several people mentioned. I knew he had add, but i didnt realize that might be the cause. When he gets home he can’t stand to have any serious talks or do anything around the house. Therefore I often feel that my needs are being set aside for later, and later never comes. This causes built-up frustration and resentment inside and sadness as well. He needs hours and hours of downtime bc work is that stressful, and sometimes he’ll act selfish about it, getting mad at me for intruding on his time. I never thought this too could be a symptom of his ADD. One thing I wish is that he would educate himself more on what his symptoms are, and to be more proactive on learning ways to manage his own ADD better. All these comments have helped me to realize I am failing in a way as a wife to be understanding. They have made me more compassionate and I hope I can remember to give him my understanding and to not expect him to be like me. It’s very hard because I look at marriage as an equal relationship and sometimes it doesn’t feel that way because of his ADD. He also has problems with anger which I guess has to do is speaking impulsively. It’s very hard for him to contain his frustrations or to listen when he’s angry. Thanks.

      • Alyssa
      • October 16, 2016
      Reply

      After reading this article and the comments I felt relieved that I’m not alone on this. Although he’s not officially diagnosed, I think my boyfriend has ADD. Once, he mentioned that he thought he might have it because it was difficult for him to focus on finishing tasks. Also he mentioned that his brother has it, so I began to do some research on the topic and I made him take a test that I found online and he has most of the symtompts. He is the most wonderful, caring, loving guy and incredible father. I love him so much and I want to help him because I believed in him, his potencial and in this relationship. It can get frustrating and sometimes I want to shut down to analyzed how am I going to deal with him.
      I am going to keep researching and make him research as well to find our happy medium 🙂

      • Lara
      • October 10, 2016
      Reply

      I was diagnosed with ADHD a month an a half ago. I went to the dr prompted by all the criticism and complaints I get from my boyfriend of two years and now I understand a lot of his frustrations and complaints. Although, I have not told him about the diagnosis. I also have hypothyroidism and he already refers to my thyroid meds as my ‘crazy pills’. I am afraid now he is going to say I am literally crazy now if I tell him I have ADHD. I just started treatment. I was thinking that perhaps if the treatment works to manage the symptoms, I wont need to tell him. After reading this article, I think I should tell him. I appreciate and suggestions on how to approach the subject from someone who has an ADHD spouse. Thanks.

      • Bianca
      • September 30, 2016
      Reply

      I am in a relationship with an ADHD guy and even if it is hard, I have to say that he made me the happiest I ever was. I learned that he needs repetitive instructions,and that we could have the same fight over and over again he wouldn’t realise it. One of the things that helped me a lot is to stop being so angry and ready to battle. Exploring his way of thinking and asking the right questions can make you understand the connection that your partner makes in his head. My partner is also very receptive when i ask him to help me fix problems that we have in our relationship . Only thing is, I have to ask him to help me. He wont take the initiative. And his explanations even though frustrating is that he just didnt think about it or that I was too fast into thinking about it. but by making him read articles about how is condition affects him, me and our dynamic as a couple, I feel that we are making a big step in our relationship.

        • lovisa
        • January 26, 2017
        Reply

        Hello Bianca, So nice to read you positive comment! i feel the same about my partner – he has made me the happiest I have ever been. My partner is not diagnosed with ADHD but I feel sure that he has it. After me realising his likelihood of ADHD our relationship has become much better since I can understand better how he is working and thinking. But I wonder how you are communicating with him without him seeing it as you being critical. I feel that my partner is very emotionally understanding, but when it comes to him he just shuts down. How do you ask him to help you? How do you make him explain his frustrations? This is the biggest problem for me in the relationship, because I feel left outside alone when he “shuts down”. Best wishes and happiness, Lovisa

          • Yohan
          • April 1, 2017
          Reply

          Hi Lovisa,

          I think I have ADHD just like your boyfriend. I’ve found this about me for last 1+ years and it start to make sense why after reading this:

          http://www.healthline.com/health/adhd/three-types-adhd#overview1

          ADHD is divided into three different types:

          inattentive type
          hyperactive-impulsive type
          combination type

          People who experience inattentive behavior often:

          miss details and are distracted easily
          get bored quickly
          have trouble focusing on a single task
          have difficulty organizing thoughts and learning new information
          lose pencils, papers, or other items needed to complete a task
          don’t seem to listen
          move slowly and appear as if they’re daydreaming
          process information more slowly and less accurately than others
          have trouble following directions

          People who are impulsive or hyperactive often:

          squirm, fidget, or feel restless
          have difficulty sitting still
          talk constantly
          touch and play with objects, even when inappropriate to the task at hand
          have trouble engaging in quiet activities
          are constantly “on the go”
          are impatient
          act out of turn and don’t think about consequences of actions
          blurt out answers and inappropriate comments

          If you have the combination type, it means that your symptoms don’t fit inattention or hyperactive-impulsive behavior.

          Most people, with or without ADHD, experience some degree of inattentive or impulsive behavior. But it’s more severe in people with ADHD. The behavior occurs more often and interferes with how you function at home, school, work, and in social situations.

          You’ve said “I feel that my partner is very emotionally understanding, but when it comes to him he just shuts down.” Do you see what has happened here? nobody likes negative things about themselves. This can lead him to anxiety or depression on top of ADHD. And yes, good thing that you are trying so that he opens his heart to you. As you can see, he is working really hard to make you happy but feels disappointed/short because he thinks that you want more or he wants to impress you more. To make this more effective, make things simpler by expecting less (let go all the fancy stuff and desires). Try to understand him rather than fix him. Do/say something nice about him (just like you want him to say “I love you” to you).

          Now you will know more about his conditions, you will understand him more and that will make your relationship to grow. It is all about learning about each other everyday and sharing all the goodness & sadness, ups & downs together. If you do that, your relationship will flourish.

      • Zara
      • September 25, 2016
      Reply

      My partner has ADHD and ADD combined. Im not being funny but its like living with a brick wall. Nothing gets thru to him. He doesnt take his pills because he says it gives him heart palpitations. He winds me up constantly and doesnt stop till i literally experience a panic attack. Ive tried to leave many times because he doesnt want to help himself but he threatens to kill himself. I feel like a slave always cleaning up while he just sits on his playstation, littering the floors with wrappers of junk food. Im very unhappy in this relationship and i dont think i can carry on much longer like this.

        • Deb
        • October 27, 2016
        Reply

        It sounds like there is a problem with being abusive also. Threatening to kill himself is manipulative. Don’t downplay the abuse because of the ADHD. I know because I’ve been in the same situation. The abuse will cost you – emotionally and physically it will harm you.

          • LINDA MARTINEZ
          • May 10, 2017
          Reply

          Hello, yes l agree the abuse will harm you, it has me! I live constantly in a state of anxiety, walking on eggshells. The man l live with is 67 yrs old and l am 52. He is crude, RUDE and
          EXTREMELY critical of everything and everyone. He is always negative, can’t sit still has to CONSTANTLY argue about EVERYTHING!! He was bullied all his childhood so in turn he uses he ADHD as an excuse for his bullying and name callling towards me. I don’t love anymore and if l had somewhere to go l would leave today. Someone mentioned the word Barbaric, well, sorry guy, but my soon to be ex-boyfriend is BARBARIC! I truly wish l could go back and find the things l liked and loved about yet l feel nothing. I am EXTREMELY exhausted EMOTIONALLY, MENTALLY and PHYSICALLY. My opinion: NO MAN IS WORTH THE ABUSE HE HAS INFLICTED ON ME! OH by the way he thteatened to kill my 8 month old cat, cuz she scratched him, common sense tells you Don’t pull her tail and intentionally make her mad. This has felt like a mother child relationship for the last 2 yrs and we have been together for 3 yrs! He refuses to take his meds cuz he knows what’s best for him. And he has the NERVE to question why women leave him
          Give me a break COLUMBO!

        • LCD
        • October 18, 2016
        Reply

        Are you married to him, or have children? Because if not, what obligation do you have to stay? If he threatens to kill himself, how serious is he? If you have to, you can call 911 to have a professional help him.

      • Michaelanne
      • September 14, 2016
      Reply

      My husband hadn’t been diagnosed with adhd, yet, but has all of the symptoms. Out therapist says he has it but his psychiatrist hasn’t officially confirmed it. She has said just yesterday that he should have never gotten married and alot of hopeless things for our marriage! I feel devastated. According to what I’ve just learned, there’s alot of hope, isn’t there?!

        • LCD
        • October 18, 2016
        Reply

        Get a new therapist who believes in saving your marriage, please!

      • Chai
      • August 25, 2016
      Reply

      I am in a new relationship with a guy who has ADHD and I can see myself with him in the future. I’m willing to give and do everything for him. I will accept this big challenge and responsibility because I know that having a boyfriend with ADHD will make me more better person. I’ve learned a lot from this site and thank you very much.

        • Dee
        • September 10, 2016
        Reply

        I too am in the early phase of a relationship with a man who has ADD. He is one of the most caring, loving men I have ever met and I would like to continue to get to know him. This site has helped to identify and explain some things I see happening.

        Thank you

      • Kaitlin
      • August 20, 2016
      Reply

      I have been with my fiancé for 6 years now and his adhd has never been as bad as it is now there is a lot he is forgetting and it’s hard for me to wrap my head around how he can forget it like spending time with our 9 month old son or when he gets off work he just wants to lay down and he zones out a lot and he always forgets deals that we make especially when we go to his grandparents house sometimes I feel like me and our son comes last to everything and I want things to work out I have loved him since we were in 8th grade but it just feels like the spark isn’t there anymore especially when he starts flirting with other girls we have talked about it and he says that he messages them for help but it always ends up in flirting like he forgets all about me can someone help me understand his side

      • Maria
      • August 18, 2016
      Reply

      I have struggled with my boyfriend’s add behavior as it relates to what I call poor social manners. When we are out in public he comes across rude which is embarrassing for me. He says it’s his disease and I find it so frustrating. He is an amazing human being which is why I stick around but we also have lots of differences. I am feeling like I don’t know if I’m up for the challenge. Does anyone have any advice to help me feel hopeful?

        • adda-ADMIN
        • August 19, 2016
        Reply

        Hi Maria,

        You’re describing a very common problem many adults with ADHD face. Two key symptoms of ADHD contribute to our struggles with social skills. First, we struggle to pay attention and so often miss the social cues that other people are sending. We don’t notice that the person we’re talking to is becoming upset or doesn’t appreciate our sense of humor. We carry on, oblivious. And second, we’re impulsive. When we see or hear something that sparks a connection in our brain, we don’t filter what we’re going to say, we simply blurt it out. So your boyfriend it right in a sense, it is the result of his ADHD. However, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible for him to learn social skills, just that it will take more work and a different approach.

        I’m an adult with ADHD and, like you, my wife despaired of me ever learning any social skills. It’s taken work, but now people usually consider me “quirky” or “blunt” rather than rude. That’s progress, but not perfection.

        Luckily, Caroline Maguire, an ADHD expert, is presenting one of ADDA’s famous Webinars on the topic of social skills on September 7, 2016. You can learn more about it here. ADDA Webinars are free for ADDA members, or you may purchase one-time attendance. If you are unable to attend the live event, you can always purchase the recording (which is also always available free to members.)

        To your success,

        Duane

      • Deb
      • August 16, 2016
      Reply

      I just met a wonderful man with ADHA. I want to understand him and his disorder. Thanks so much for the insight. Looking forward to learning more.

      • Anthony
      • August 13, 2016
      Reply

      I have to say reading up on ADD I had no idea that the person with ADD are most suffering in their life with it. I have a really close friend who I love who has this disorder. I seriously need to treat her differently and try to understand her better and comfort her and just show her my love and give her the support she needs. I am so glad I read about this disorder. Thank u.

      • Beau
      • August 12, 2016
      Reply

      I really needed this. It can be lonely and confusing to bridge between seeming harmony and sudden chaos. I have tried to rationalize, and talk about his sudden mental walk-aways and my feelings being set aside, or an agreement we made the day before being forgotten like amnesia. I may have been aggrevating my partner’s ADHD by keeping the resulting problems forefront in the mix. That’s extra pressure to think and act like I do. I’m going to try to be more understanding of his own confusion and frustration about impulsive thinking. I know he means well he is a very good loving person, I need to step out of victimhood and be his forgiving friend as well.

      • T-Dub
      • August 10, 2016
      Reply

      I am a non-adhd partner in a relationship. For years, we have struggled and continue to struggle. I now realize that I need help to cope and be the best person I can to salvage my relationship and save my family.

        • suzanne sparkes
        • August 25, 2016
        Reply

        I too am the non adhd partner..hubby just diagnosed we have struggled for years and split up twice i desperately need help to cope

      • Edswed
      • August 9, 2016
      Reply

      I have add and the selfish behaviour coming as a result feeling overwhelmed is very true. And criticism doesn’t help, I am already ruthlessly critical of myself. But I get why anyone in a relationship with someone with Add will often feel undervalued. It must be really hard on someone’s self worth when they are being ignored. The strange part is that I genuinely want to be able to give myself and my presence, but the inner pull is so strong at times.

        • Michele
        • September 27, 2016
        Reply

        Thanks for commenting. I’m in the early stages of a relationship that feels like it could really be something. But as the initial fire has progressed into more of everyday flames, I feel like I’m on a roller coaster a little. When we are together, it’s wonderful. When we’re doing separate things, I feel like he forgets I exist, and that hurts. We talk about it and he says the same thing you have said. I’m just now learning about ADHD and it is all making so much more sense.

      • Edward
      • August 6, 2016
      Reply

      My girlfriend seems to put her work 1st, kids 2nd, and me 3rd. She is always in high gear when works involved. Swearing is very common towards the kids. Is there any future for me or should I move on?

        • Jessica
        • November 2, 2016
        Reply

        Hi Edward – use the ADHD resources on youtube – there are some great videos on there by professionals that explain how you can make a marriage or relationship work when one or both partners has ADD/ADHD. I too am trying to make a relationship work with someone who has the condition. He also works a lot, and when he’s not working he’s generally too exhausted to make time with me. If you look up the videos I mentioned, the professionals explain that people with the condition respond to three things 1. Novelty (exciting/new things), 2. Challenging things and 4. extreme deadlines with dramatic consequences. The ADHD brain does not regulate the use of dopamine like the regular brain, so not only do people with the condition struggle to filter out stimuli, but they seek out stimuli that result in the release of dopamine. Excitement , challenge and adrenaline. They struggle to focus on things that do not fall into these categories. Work provides challenge, novelty and deadlines so people with ADHD can thrive at work provided that they are in the right type of job. Kids would come second as they are challenging. As far as your relationship is concerned, you can make a future work with your partner but you may need to try and consider how you can help refocus your partner’s attention when she is not at work. It isn’t because she doesn’t love you, it’s just the relationship feels secure and comfortable so her focus is directed at other things. Maybe you can suggest a date night once a week where you both share a new experience together without the kids?

        • Denise Ramsay
        • August 14, 2016
        Reply

        I hear both discouragement and hope in your question. A place to start is honest communication. Without distractions, without accusatory words or criticism, find a way to help ur wife understand your concerns, needs, and hopes. Make specific, doable requests and see if she’s willing to partner with you to make the marriage more of a priority.

      • Mark
      • June 28, 2016
      Reply

      I just had an argument with my girlfriend who has adhd, she always seem to forget to consider my feelings. I’m gonna share this article when things cool down. I love her but I doubt she will every understand my pain.

      • Brian Castleton
      • June 12, 2016
      Reply

      This information was very helpful. I realize that I don’t have enough date nights with my wife. Also to slow things down

    2. Reply

      This information was most informative and helpful to me as I move forward in a relationship with a person with ADHD. Thank you!

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