How ADHD Affects Relationships


In a relationship where one or both people have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), problems may arise. While other couples live happy and healthy relationships with the presence of ADHD in both or one of the people involved, quite a number of marriages end in divorce related to this disorder. There are problems that affect the relationships between adults with ADHD and it helps to know the impact of this condition to these relationships.

1. Loss of focus once the relationship reaches plateau.

Relationships between adults with one having ADHD symptoms can turn to frustration on the part of the person who does not have ADHD if left unmanaged. While the courtship is ongoing, the partner with ADHD tends to shower the other with all the attention which at first is flattering and satisfying to the person who is non-ADHD. However, as the relationship grows and time passes by, the person with ADHD stops hyperfocusing on his or her partner. This will affect the relationship if the other does not understand that the loss of attention and being busy with something else, such as a hobby, is unintentional. If the partner who does not have ADHD takes this deviation personally, this can result to being demanding and expecting too much from the other and eventually, misunderstanding and frequent fights.

2. Husband-wife relationship turns to parent-child relationship.

People already have insecurities even with having ADHD and a person with this condition who enters a relationship has self-doubt, along with other traits that leave the partner who does not have ADHD to take care of most of the responsibilities in the relationship, including chores, finances, parenting and decision-making. If the partner who has been laden with the burden will not empathize with the other, this can put a strain in their relationship.

3. Actions and reactions lead to conflicts.

Individuals with ADHD can get angry easily and have the tendency to have outbursts that die down as easily as they come. According to experts, problems do not always arise from the symptoms but from the reaction of the partner from these symptoms. If the other feels disrespected and decides to fight back, the partner with ADHD can either argue or be withdrawn. Either way, this is unhealthy because it can lead to more arguments or the issues will remain unsolved.

4. Undiagnosed or untreated symptoms can result to nagging.

If a partner is not aware that his or her partner has ADHD, chances are, this person thinks that the other has many flaws, such as not being a good listener, hard-headed and insensitive. In time, he or she will turn to nag the other hoping that things will change. However, this will not happen. It is because one of the symptoms of ADHD is distractibility and has nothing to do with lack of motivation. Nagging is not the answer and so long as these symptoms are not managed and the partner does not stop nagging, this can definitely affect the relationship.

ADHD symptoms have an impact on relationships between and among people. However, by being aware of the manifestations of this disorder and how these affect relationships can help in finding ways to overcome the struggles that come with having a partner with ADHD.

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