“Life is interesting only as long as it is a process of growth; or, to put it another way, we can grow only as long as we are interested.” - Cheryl Strayed, writing as advice columnist, “Sugar”
Are You Interested?
One of the saddest things I encounter when working with couples is when one or both partners has ‘checked out’ of their relationship, yet still keeps up the motions. This creates a toxic environment that is stressful and unhappy for both partners. You are connected by contract, but not by positive emotion.
I’ve been in this place. Years can go by when you don’t understand fully what is going on, but know you feel miserably disconnected from your partner and can’t seem to bridge the gap between you because one or both of you has put up a protective wall of disconnection.
Partners often tell me that they are disconnected as a way to protect themselves. Unfortunately, disconnecting means that the relationship cannot flourish. Is it really protecting yourself to remain in a position in which you cannot thrive?
If you are in this situation, I strongly urge you to seek professional help. For couples impacted by ADHD that means finding a counselor who understands this specialty – see the referrals section on my website. You may also wish to consider taking my couples seminar as a starting place (next session will likely be spring of 2015 – watch these tips for an announcement of the dates.)
As Strayed points out, you can only grow if you are interested. This is particularly true of couples, who rely on their connection with another, for relationship growth. Don’t put off finding help – stagnation and negative feelings are not the same thing as ‘being interested.’
For those in marriages impacted by ADHD
You can find great resources for couples impacted by ADHD at my marriage and ADHD website, including: a free online treatment overview; free downloadable chapters of my books; a community forum with other couples facing similar issues; a large number of blog posts on various topics; referrals; and my very popular ADHD Effect In-Depth Couples' Seminar. This eight-session seminar has helped many couples turn around their relationship, and is given by phone, so anyone may participate.