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The Ultimate Guide to ADHD Relationships

26/03/2018
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In every relationship, communication and anger management is a primary requirement to keep things going smoothly between you and your partner. But when you are a person with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD/ADHD), these key relationship skills become a day-to-day struggle. If you find a hard time working on these or you just give up, you might be jeopardising your already strained ADHD relationships.

However, there are some main things to remember to avoid sabotaging your relationship.

Follow These Tips (ADHD Relationships)

Value trust.

It is a common fact that trust is the primary foundation of any romantic relationship. Many relationships – with partners with and without ADHD- are bound for a pitfall when trust is violated like having an affair. If you break your partner’s trust, do not be surprised if you see everything else crumble and crash into pieces. The pain of the past and the present can affect the status of your relationship because of the traumas of the hurtful events that have happened. Talk with your partner about issues that might be affecting each other’s trust and find ways to resolve this.

a woman holding the hand of a her man facing the city

Do not belittle your partner.

One guaranteed way to ruin (if you ever want to) a good relationship is to belittle or reproach your partner especially if they are doing their best to work on managing their ADHD symptoms. Instead of building each other up, some partners resort to this in order to wield power in the relationship. They fail to understand how this can ruin even the best foundations of the relationships and marriages. Both person in the relationship – the spouse with ADHD and the one without – should be working on building each other’s self-esteem and strengthening each other’s good characteristics.

a woman wearing boxing gloves punching the man's face

Find new and fun ways.

When relationships reach a dreadful stage of being “boring” or “stagnant”, they can become frail. Adults with ADHD can easily lose interest in things that are done in the same old way. Look for new and different ways to bring fun into your relationship, keeping things fresh and anew.

a man who piggyback ride his woman and have fun with each other

Avoid pointing fingers.

In many relationships, instead of taking responsibility for each one’s fault, people result in blaming and pointing fingers to the other for the relationship’s imperfections. Try talking things out and devise ways to solve problems. Work with your partner to see things from your perspective. Look for ways to build your relationship and overcome challenges rather than blaming and prioritising your own needs.

an angry man pointing his finger

Communicate.

People often forget that communication is not merely talking and listening. It’s about listening, talking and understanding. Lack of the last factor is a sure-fire way for miscommunication. People in relationships tend to read minds and jump to conclusions which can result in hurting the relationship. Individuals, with and without ADHD, should take time to communicate effectively – listening and understanding his/her partner’s point of view. Avoid reacting to what you think the other means. Instead, ask what they really mean and formulate ways to respond constructively.

Recognise and value the good.

In a relationship, it is important to recognise your partner’s strengths. Spouses of adults challenged with ADHD symptoms can tell you effortlessly what they don’t like about their relationships but it takes great effort to recognise the good. Focus on the good parts and recognise each other’s strength and use these to harness whatever complications you have in your relationship. Remember to compliment your partner about the nice things they have done. Compliments are like fairy dust; it does wonders to the relationships.

Empathise.

Self-centeredness and misunderstanding destroy the balance that is essential to keep a relationship strong. Many people, with and without ADHD, fail or sometimes reject the chance to understand his/her partner’s point of view. This results to weakness in the relationship’s bond and intimacy.  For relationships, especially with ADHD partners and spouses, it is crucial to understand each other’s challenges and acknowledge that ADHD brains work atypically. Work with your partner in devising ways to considering each other’s perspective.

Make quality time.

For people challenged with ADHD symptoms, it is utterly hard to focus and distractions often get in the way of making quality time for their loved ones. This can affect relationships where time is of essential value. Time can be the first thing that is compromised when you become busy with your life. It pays to make and invest valuable time in your relationships and with your loved ones.

a couple riding bicycle together with quality time

Do not avoid conflicts.

Conflicts can be devastating but it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to avoid it. Giving in to another person takes away little of your power. If this happens again and again, you might develop resentment towards the relationship. ADHD adults need to speak and stand up for what they know is right; this will be better for the relationship.

Never take the relationship for granted.

Like all other flourishing and growing things, relationships need nurture. They need to be a priority every once in a while. Though there can be a million things going on in your life, or you might feel so especially when you are battling ADHD, never neglect your relationships. Tackle and settle issues. Focus on what you both want in your relationship and work ways to make things happen. Your ADHD partner might need a hand on being reminded about your plans. Be patient, be adaptive and be resilient.

Learn to forgive

Your ADHD spouse is not perfect and so are you. We all forget tasks and mess up. ADHD people mess up more. As small of a factor as it may seem, it matters a lot that you don’t get mad easily when your partner commits a mistake or stumbles. And it matters a lot that you learn to forgive each other’s shortcomings. Acceptance and forgiveness is the key to happiness in your relationship and your lives.

Conclusion

Loving is accepting the person as a whole, not just the beautiful parts but the ugly ones as well. It is understanding that no person is perfect but will be made perfect because of your love. Whatever challenges your relationships are going through, you should work hand in hand with your partner. After all, that’s what a relationship is all about, right?

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