When we marry, we hope to remain happily married until death, yet that is not the experience that most of us have. Yes, most of us who get married will stay married, but committed relationships generally include plenty of significant bumps and bruises. Here are some statistics to ponder:
There is a very interesting forum conversation going on that I would like to highlight here for those who are interested in whether or not they should continue dating someone with ADHD. In a nutshell, the original poster is nervous about whether or not the problems she sees in her relationship with her boyfriend with ADHD will always be present or if they can be improved.
You are not alike, and one of the big differences between you is what it feels like to live with your brain. You may be surprised at just how different your head feels than your partners, once you start to discuss it (go ahead – it’s a fun conversation!) So, in the words of those who know first hand, what IS it like to see the world “through” an ADHD brain?
For those of you who now see that ADHD might be hurting your marriage there is a lot of information to digest. So here are six important, easy-to-remember ideas to focus on first so you can start improving your marriage right now.
Frustrated non-ADHD spouses will often say to me something such as "It's so obvious that my partner should do X. I don't understand why he/she won't!" While a solution to the problem at hand may seem obvious, it's often really not quite so straightforward and here's why:
I've been thinking about power balances in relationship recently, and the role that validation plays in maintaining balance between partners. I want to propose that you consider doing an experiment to better understand the ways that you and your spouse validate each other (or don't). If you understand this better it will give you information about how to diminish conflict in your household.
One of the major points my wife, Sue, and I stress in our new book, Married to Distraction, is the critical element of time. People take time for granted. But without time, there is no attention, and with attention there is no communication or empathy, and without communication and empathy there is no connection, and without a connection there is no play, and without play there is no fulfilling intimacy, romance, or love. We often say that play is the main action of love. But it all depends upon the previous steps, starting with time.
One of the most common problems in couples in general and in couples where there is ADD in particular is the inability to make changes. This is vexing because, as they say in AA, if nothing changes, nothing changes.
Both ADHD and non-ADHD spouses have a tendency to feel as if their own vision of the world is the way that the world really "is" - this feeling is human nature. We have many years on earth, we've learned certain things about how the world works and who we (and others) are in relation to what's around us. So it can be a revelation when we have the courage to step outside of our own view and try to see the world through our partner's eyes. Doing this can be very healing for a couple because in so doing you validate your partner.