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Communication Strategies in ADHD Relationships

Communication Strategies in ADHD Relationships

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I can’t tell you how often I see people come into my office who clearly have adult ADHD and yet they were never diagnosed. What will often bring them in is difficulty in their relationship or work and then as we pick apart those tricky areas, we work to build strategies to overcome those obstacles. Often a tricky part of this is that the person with ADHD has a brain that can move very quickly from issue to issue almost like clicking on links going from website to website. This can make them more likely to miss something that would be of benefit for processing in their relationship or life in general. They can also be quite defensive about difficulties in these areas as it likely has been a difficulty in their past. The process I lay out below is designed utilizing best practices from thought leaders in our field to try and aid communication strategies in ADHD relationships.


Summary of points from the video…

  1. Have specific complaints and requests: When ___ happened, I felt Y, and I wanted Z.
  2. Curb the impulsivity by not assuming things. Directly connect and find out the answers.
  3. When you are hyper-focused and get interrupted by someone, take a break and focus on the person who has come to connect.
  4. When you have difficulties, it’s not a bad thing. Practice redo’s and learn from the problem together.
  5. Use your partner’s input like a blind spot detector. Look for the positives in their feedback and the truth that might help.
  6. Avoid pointing to the ADHD as the problem. Look for things that might be supportive in your feedback.

If you are wondering if you or your partner might have ADHD, take this short ADHD quiz to find out. If you do have ADHD, know that the solution isn’t medication alone. In fact, we have some clients who don’t take medication at all. The process of overcoming ADHD means looking at a bigger picture including diet and nutrition, exercise, sleep, possibly medication, and counseling to help analyze past patterns and to work to build new ones. If you would like to find out more information, read our blog on other topics of ADHD, see more about our ADHD Counseling or couples counseling, or contact us to make a counseling appointment. If you would like more tips on communication strategies with your partner who has ADHD or Aspergers, you can read Tips for Better Communication in ADHD Relationships and Communicating Effectively with Your Asperger’s Partner.

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