About 15 million adults have ADHD, and they and their partners often experience significant relationship difficulties as a result. The characteristics of ADHD - chronic distraction; poor planning; time management issues; short-term memory issues and more - can make staying happy when you have family and marital responsibilities a challenge. Partner responses to ADHD symptoms also contribute significant stress. However, adult ADHD is manageable by most, and couples that are well educated about how to manage the impact of ADHD can thrive together. Here are my suggestions for books that will help you understand your partnership better, and learn more. And, yes, the first two are my own, as they focus specifically on ADHD and committed partnerships (if you haven't read them yet, you should!) And, one of the best resources of all is my 8 week couples seminar. It has helped many, many couples...and during the course I will answer all of your questions. More information is available here.
As you can see, we have updated the adhdmarriage.com website after a good long run of seven years for the old one. I want to publicly thank George for all his hard work - this was a huge undertaking as this site is now massive. There will probably be a few glitches, and if you see one, please report it. And, if you have a moment to thank George for his continued to support of this site, that would be great, too. He is the 'silent' partner in all this, but works hard behind the scenes to keep things running smoothly. THANK YOU, GEORGE!
Thanksgiving is a great time to reflect on what you are thankful for. This year, as I complete my second book, I am particularly aware of how grateful I am to be working with a community of people impacted by ADHD. There are so many seeking ways to love their partner more fully and working to make their lives better...truly it is a privilege. Thank you!
Melissa will present a CE event for GoodTherapy.org at 9 a.m. PDT on October 11, titled Tools to Help Couples Impacted by ADHD Thrive. It is available free with 1.5 CE credits for all GoodTherapy.org members. For details, or to register, please click here.
Adults with ADHD may feel awkward in social situations or have difficulty communicating. I recently got a note from a man with ADHD who said he needed tips on how to better meet interesting women and make close friends. Here are a few suggestions:
The basic progression in the forum here is to find it when in terrible pain, post about that pain, get lots of feedback (helpful and not), work on your relationship (sometimes for years) and resolve. One resolution is to leave your partner. Another is to stay and create a happy relationship. If you are one of the people who has repaired your relationship and sees success, consider paying everyone here back by staying a bit involved with the site and posting about your positive experiences. People here need to hear from those who are successful in their efforts - yet success and happiness lead many to stop visiting and posting. Thanks to Aspen for recently jumping in about the now happy state of her relationship...I urge others, over time, to do the same. I thank you in advance for your contributions!
Zoe Kessler has posted here before and is a regular contributor to PsychCentral. She has just posted an interview with a couple in which the non-ADHD partner describes her appreciation for the ADHD essence of her partner - well worth reading! You can find Zoe's blog and this particular post here. If you have any thoughts about the positive things you see in your partner's ADHD, please feel free to add them to this entry...I, for one, recognized my husband in much of what this woman wrote.
Want to learn more about ADHD - ADDitude Magazine has an excellent free series of webinars with experts. This month's adult ADHD topics include: staying on task; managing adult ADHD; improving your memory and information on alternative therapies. ALL are hot topics. In addition, you can listen to past webinar recordings, as well. Go to this link at ADDitude Magazine.
On January 25 I will be giving a 1.5 hour talk for therapists through the therapist website GoodTherapy.org. It is free for members of that site and counts for 1.5 CE credits. To prepare for this, I wrote a blog post about why therapists should get involved in helping couples with ADHD. If you have a therapist you are working with whom you think might be interested in the talk please let them know about this event. Since it's only 1.5 hours long it will simply be an overview...but it's a start!