“Worry, anxiety, fear, and terror are stress – “There’s a lion! Run!”
Irritation, annoyance, frustration, anger, and rage are stress – “There’s a lion – kill it!”
Emotional numbness, shutdown, depression, and despair are stress – “There’s a lion! Play dead!”
And none of these indicates that now is a good time to get laid."
- Emily Nagoski
There are a whole lot of reason so many couples impacted by ADHD don't have good sex lives, and many of them are listed in the quote above.
Your sex life is your relationship’s canary in the mine. Even before you know things are going poorly, your sex life suffers. After you’ve been struggling a while, forget it!
Here’s the good news. You can get it back. But first you have to slay a few lions. Focus on your relationship, learn about ADHD and it’s impact, get out of the common patterns, have enough fun experiences that you remember why you were attracted to each other in the first place.
Then you have a choice to make – start slow (outside the bedroom) and rebuild your sex life with touch and verbal affection, or ‘sandblast’ the old sex life and start over. Either one can work. I chose the latter. At some point I decided – overtly – to drop the sex life baggage and focus on one thing only – having fun in bed. No worries about ‘deep meaning.’ No critiquing my (or my husband’s) performance. Put aside my concerns about ADHD issues. Just sex.
For me, that worked. We started to remember how to have fun. We both started to feel appreciated. The neurochemicals released at orgasm (primarily Oxytocin) started to help us feel more connected.
If you’re ready to improve your sex life, one good resource is Nagoski’s book, Come As You Are. It is the best book I’ve ever read on the topic of women’s sexual health. It wisely and compassionately encourages women to learn more about their own desire.
Connecting is critical! My January seminar and support groups will transform your relationship. ADHD Effect In-Depth Couples' Seminar - Live session starts January 15, 2019. Support groups for ADHD and Non-ADHD groups also start in January.
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!
Seminars and Groups
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 Live session starts January 15, 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 and ADHD Partner Support Tele-Group both run 8 consecutive Tuesdays @ 8:30pm EDT, 1/15 - 3/5, 2019