The ADHD Effects on Marriage

I have finished reading "The ADHD Effects on Marriage".  What a surprise!!!  My spouse decided to read it too!!!  Funny he decided we should jump to step six.  I am thinking we need to go thru all six steps.  He was gracious enough to tell me i might need to get someone to help with my depression.  While he decided to let work interfere with him getting in contact with his doctor to get his prescription for his ADHD.  So he has been off of his ADHD medication for a number of weeks.  He does not want to find out why i am depressed.  I had hoped that him reading the book would be an eye opening experience.

Step 6 First

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From Melissa Orlov

I'm so delighted that you decided to read the book - that's a great first step.  While everyone wants to start with the fun part - the romance and passion - because that is what marriage is all about (!!!) you won't be able to be effective in Step 6 until you go through the other steps.  So, for example, an ADHD spouse needs to put staying on top of medications and going even further towards optimizing your treatment as a top priority.  This is important both because it helps you perform better within the marriage (able to attend better, etc) but also because it sends a message to your partner that you aren't just preaching, but also doing.  So, for example, if you were on top of your meds, it would have been much harder for your partner to think sarcastically "isn't it great that he thinks I should do something about my possible depression when he can't even manage to stay on top of his already diagnosed ADHD?"  Your advice about seeing if she's depressed is right on target...BUT she can't hear that when your own behavior is inconsistent.  She doesn't hear "it's in your best interests to get a diagnosis."  She hears "He doesn't even care to listen to what my concerns are enough to treat himself - why should I bother?"  So, consider going back to the step on treatment and doing a full assessment.  What are you doing in all three treatment legs?  How can you "max out" or optimize your approach to making sure you are there for her?  If you don't have multiple approaches in every leg, there's more upside for you to come (yay!)

Then, of course, you'll also want to start talking with her about her own experiences - she needs to be able to feel heard - this is a HUGE part of not feeling lonely and getting past her depression that is affecting both of you and your relationship.  That's in Step 1, as well in the communication chapter...and also the getting past obstacle emotions (hers - and maybe yours) chapter...

Sex and romance fall out of a good relationship...your relationship won't become good enough for the "good stuff" until you do the hard work in Chapters 1-5 first.  It's all related.  To get to a good, open relationship, you have to attack the patterns (both hers and yours) together.

But you're off to a good start - at least the two of you are starting from a shared knowledge base about how ADHD symptoms can impact relationships with S/R/R, parent/child dynamics and more.  And, you have a new set of tools at your disposal...USE THEM...and then romance will follow.

Best of luck to you!