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ADHD and Relationships: 10 Reliable Ways to Support Your Partner

How do you handle your new connection when you're in the early stages of dating, and your partner just told you they have ADHD? This condition may be more common than existing research estimates. It often goes undiagnosed, especially in adults.

The common characteristics of adult ADHD that may lead to misunderstandings and conflicts in relationships include:

  • Drastic changes in mood
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Forgetfulness, absentmindedness, or difficulty in concentrating
  • Tendency to easily get distracted or absorbed in something that the rest of the world fades away
  • Challenges in completing important tasks in time
  • Difficulty staying organized or motivated
  • Fatigue or other sleep problems
  • Restlessness, which might depict extreme energy

The above symptoms emphasize why loving someone with ADHD has its own set of challenges. It is the reason we share with you 10 great strategies to get your ADHD relationship back on track. We are happy to see you help your dating partner and improve your marriage.

Manage Symptoms

Take ownership of the condition as a couple. Applying appropriate behavioral therapy and medications to manage symptoms can help the brain work as it is supposed to.

If the main challenge with the condition is listening, then practice with your partner to help them sharpen their listening skills. Help them strengthen their ability to focus when following through tasks or when you're talking.

Talk to a Professional

A primary care physician or mental health professional is a great place to start if your partner hasn't received an ADHD diagnosis. Once diagnosed, encourage them to seek professional therapy to:

  • Learn more about ADHD
  • Explore treatment options
  • Understand ways the condition affects life and relationships
  • Address anxiety and other co-occurring conditions
  • Practice communication skills

Be supportive to your dating partner by explaining the several ways therapy could help the condition.

Emphasize Their Strengths

People with ADHD have different strengths. It is important to recognize your individual areas of expertise and share tasks accordingly. If your dating partner has prowess in cooking but has trouble getting meals on the table in time, appreciate their unique skills and help them beat the challenging area. You could even help them get started, so they finish on time.

Patience Becomes a Commitment

Understand that ADHD is a mental condition, and your better half is not intentionally behaving just to annoy you. They didn't choose to have it. However, it's normal to feel frustrated and ignored occasionally. Don't get emotionally drained that you start worrying you'll give up and leave them if they keep messing up. Grow unwavering patience by often asking how your dating partner feels to gain an insight into their day-to-day life experience.

Work on Your Communication

Misunderstandings and miscommunications are more common in relationships affected by ADHD. The great moments you shared chatting and flirting online on one of the leading local dating sites might dwindle with time. Forgetfulness and procrastination may make you feel ignored.

Besides talking to your dating partner about how you feel, try to get into their shoes to understand what they find challenging.

Humor Helps

Learn to use laughter therapy to lessen challenges posed by ADHD. It's important to laugh at yourself sometimes and take the problems a little more lightheartedly. Laughter helps you see the intended words or actions as symptoms of a condition and just move forward in the relationship.

Take Note of What Works for Them

What works for your partner, especially when it comes to time management and task scheduling? Is it leaving notes around the house to jog their memory or a totally different strategy? You need to help them see the strategy or wall notes not as passive-aggressive reminders but as an attempt to help them deal with tasks.

Respect their decisions when they share that something doesn't work for them and explore more options together.

Find Solutions for Specific Problems

You can't manage every aspect of your dating partner's life. They might find it discouraging when you try solving everything for them. It might send the message you don't believe they can handle anything for themselves. That is why it's important to bring up a problem you noticed and work on a solution together.

Learn to Forgive and Forget

When living with a person having adult ADHD, it's easy to get frustrated and point a finger at them as the source of problems in the relationship. Even if it takes two to tango, you can't change or control your partner. Learn to forgive and forget the challenges you've gone through as a couple. Admit to the problems the condition may be causing and continually work on changing them together.

Establish a Support Structure

There are times when the relationship is not just about you and your partner. There could be loving friends and family willing to support you. It doesn't mean you share every detail about your dating partner with them. But you'll find them useful when you feel stressed and need a break. You could even go for an organizational system that works for you. External structural cues are key for individuals with ADHD and form an important part of treatment.

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