As you probably know, both my husband Mark and I have Attention Deficit Disorder. We’ve been together for 32 years and married for 29. I think we have a great relationship.
Whenever our ADHD caused us to do something that might have caused problems, it was easier for us to understand and forgive because we’ve both been there.
A few weeks ago, I expressed surprise when Mark mentioned that his dad has lung cancer. It turns out that Mark had told me the day before, but to this day, I have no memory of it whatsoever. I feel really, really bad about that, but Mark understands that I just was distracted when he told me.
But what about the relationships when only one spouse has ADHD?
I’ve met more than one person – usually a woman – who ended up divorcing her ADHD ex-husband and is now trying to cope with her child’s ADHD. It makes it really hard when your child does the same kinds of things that drove you crazy about your ex spouse.
I also know a few couples who are still married and coping with the spouse’s ADHD. It helps a great deal when the ADHD is identified so that at least both parties have an explanation for certain behaviors. It helps the non ADHD spouse understand a little more and to be more forgiving.
If you are one of those people in an ADHD-non ADHD relationship, or if you’re like me and both of you are ADHD, I have found a site that may help.
The site is called Thoughts on ADHD and Marriage and it’s run by a man I respect a great deal – Dr. Ned Hallowell. Melissa Orlov, a well known and respected authority on ADHD and relationships is Dr. Hallowell’s partner on this site.
There are articles, a forum, and other resources available on this site; check it out.