ADHD and Your Significant Other

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Having a healthy, loving relationship with your significant other can be complicated by ADHD in so many ways.

Communication between the two of you can result in misunderstandings (or worse) because your ADHD symptoms cause you to miss social cues, not pay attention on a consistent basis, or say the wrong thing.

As women, we are traditionally expected to perform certain duties: household tasks such as cleaning, planning for and preparing meals, child care, laundry, errands – I don’t have to tell you how long the list is – you live it.

But when you have ADHD, it’s very easy for those duties to become overwhelming.

The house may not be up to standards in terms of neatness or cleanliness. You may find yourself with a refrigerator of food and yet nothing to prepare an entire meal. You might forget to sign a permission slip, or return it. (Once I forgot to pick up my youngest at pre-school. Luckily her older brother and sister reminded me before I got home.)

When the household doesn’t run smoothly, it can make people irritable. They may even feel as though they can’t depend on you.

All of this can add up to tension between you and your significant other. It can strain the relationship.

So what can you do?

The biggest thing is communication. Your spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, whoever needs to truly understand your ADHD and how it affects you. And they need to accept it as well.

Your ADHD will never be “cured” or go away. It’s as much a part of you as your eye color, or sense of humor, or any other thing that makes you who you are.

Once they get that, you can sit down and focus on problems and solutions.

Maybe they need to readjust their expectations, or maybe they could pitch in and help more often. Maybe you could find ways to help you remember things or get rid of some clutter so that the house isn’t so overwhelming for you.

ADHD is a challenge to be worked through in a relationship, but it can never break a healthy union. And that’s maybe something you need to look at as well.

Someone who truly cares for you can be frustrated by your ADHD symptoms, but they will never make you feel inferior because of them.

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Lacy Estelle

Lacy Estelle is the writer of and the Podcast host for An ADD Woman.

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