Too often, when seeking answers to difficult questions or situations, couples find themselves in opposition to each other, rather than on the same team. You argue, and feel as if you are right, and your partner is wrong. That’s an ‘or’ conversation. It’s either your way OR my way. We have a lot of that going on in the national conversation right now, too.
Think about how different that is from believing that you both have good ideas – or even the right to hold those ideas - even if you don’t agree on all aspects of those ideas! That’s an ‘and’ conversation. There may be a solution in combining parts of your idea AND my idea.
Next time you disagree, I encourage you to overtly seek the ‘and’ in your conversation. It is very often there, though sometimes to find it you have to look underneath the superficial topic of conversation. For example, you might be arguing about the kids’ bedtime. Underneath that, there is an ‘and’ – you both want the best for your kids. If you start there it changes the conversation, as well as your feelings about the conversation. Suddenly, even though you disagree on the details, the conversation feels more productive and you are more likely to get to a place that you can both live with.
When could you seek ‘and’?
For those in marriages impacted by ADHD
You can find great resources for couples impacted by ADHD at adhdmarriage.com, including free: Online treatment overview; Downloadable chapters of my books; A community forum with other couples facing similar issues; A large number of blog posts on various topics; Referrals. Adult ADHD can have a huge impact on your relationship. ADHDmarriage.com can literally change your life!
Is your relationship in trouble? Consider my highly acclaimed couples' course: ADHD Effect In-Depth Couples' Seminar - This 8-session phone seminar has helped many couples thrive in healthier, happier relationships. The next session starts in October 2019.
Support Tele-groups - Be part of a community exploring similar issues; learn from each other's successes and struggles; and find new, more effective ways to be your best self in your relationship: Non ADHD Partner Support Tele-group.