“People will forgive you for not being the leader you should be; but they won’t forgive you for not being the leader you claim to be.”
-from an article on General Stanley McChrystal (he is quoting another)
The Leader You Are
McChrystal’s quote, from an article on leadership, is very relevant for couples struggling with ADHD who are still blaming their partners, while believing they are doing okay.
I hear this from both parties. ADHD partners may claim they are making great progress, but confuse thinking about or learning about ADHD with making measurable, effective change. They complain they are leading but their non-ADHD partner is still stuck. For those who fit this profile, I suggest you use the SMART goal setting and measurement system to get an accurate view of just how much progress you are making in your execution.
Non-ADHD partners may claim they are making good progress on being more constructive, while forgiving or justifying their continued parenting behaviors and anger responses. While anger and frustration are understandable, real leadership is about consistently expressing those feelings more productively (i.e. not venting, for one!)
It helps both parties when both recognize progress while also recognizing that more work needs to be done. Give up a sense that you are leading and lay out (and follow) a specific plan to demonstrate what you will make happen. That’s leadership, when recovering from marital struggles with ADHD.
Do you have your improvement plan in place? Could you synopsize it clearly to your partner? Is it measurable?
Final Non-ADHD Partner support groups for 2020 - both start next week on Thursday, Oct 29. One runs at 11:30am eastern time and the other runs at 7:30pm eastern time.Learn more
Adult ADHD can have a huge impact on your relationship. ADHDmarriage.com can literally change your life! Find great resources for couples impacted by ADHD 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.
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.