ADHD affects relationships, but not all people look at it as a huge issue. They didn’t know that there’s a far more damaging issue to the condition yet they seem to be not interested in talking about it. Perhaps that’s because it’s not a favorite subject. However, there are tons of articles and videos that discuss different useful advice on how to deal with the situation. There’s the discussion of impulsivity, hyperactivity, time-management, anxiety treatment, inattention, and a lot more. “The good news is that learning about how your ADHD affects the relationship can help you find strategies and tools to improve communication with your partner and develop a healthier, happier relationship as a result,” says Katie Hurley, LCSW.
With this information, there’s a significant chance that people are now trying to acknowledge that ADHD in the relationship is becoming a big deal.
The Underlying Truth
It’s not true that people with ADHD can’t focus. Instead, they suffer in sustaining attention on things because those don’t quite reward their brains for focusing. It’s a matter of problems with insufficient dopamine where there are not many receptors present in the brain of a person with ADHD. That’s perhaps the reason why the non-ADHD partner or other people often describe him or her as dull and unresponsive. But the truth is, the individual has no control over it. However, some things fire up the dopamine of a person with ADHD. These include personal interest, things that are new and situations that are challenging. All of which play a role at the beginning of a relationship. ”People with ADHD very much intend to do something when they say it. It’s not like some problems where people lie or are deceitful,” says Steven Safren, PhD.
At early dating stages, all attention and energy of an individual with ADHD is on the person he or she is currently in connection with. But as the relationship continues, it becomes less stimulating. With that, the person’s focus tends to shift. There’s the start of looking for other things to do to which leads to relationship issues. Sometimes, the non-ADHD partner becomes used to that particular way of deprived attention. And when it’s pulled away, it grows into something more personal where the other person doesn’t feel loved anymore.
Inside The Relationship
It’s fairly natural for an individual with ADHD to use his or her romantic relationship as dopamine booster. That’s because it increases the level by getting emotionally and physically involved in a desirable human being. Also, the idea of going from relationship to different relationship gives the individual a boost in excitement. As well as pretending that everything is going smooth in a relationship becomes a norm. In some unfortunate events, though it feels unfair, criticizing the non-ADHD partner becomes enticing for the person with ADHD. That’s because there’s a buildup of different emotions at the same time. The person needs it to feel less bored and become mentally active. There are also instances that when the person with ADHD finds the kind of relationship he or she desires, the possibility of pushing everything as quickly as possible gets presented on the table. Though the individual with the condition may look at this as a helpful tool, it creates confusion for the non-ADHD partner and everyone around involved.
If ADHD is starting to become the cause of the relationship issue, the individual with the condition must recognize the existence of the disorder. One should be honest with what he or she needs, and who he or she wants to become. Though admittedly, it doesn’t solve everything, the person must fight the condition. It is essential to understand that not everyone with ADHD needs instant medication to reduce dysfunction. Perhaps some people would though, but again, not all. But if a person is in pill, it is essential to take it a moderate amount. The purpose of this is to slow down the tolerance a person can develop from taking prescription drugs daily.
So if a person is only in a relationship for the sake of getting enough dopamine high, he or she might as well stop involving in a commitment that will soon end in despair. And for the non-ADHD individual, it is essential that he also understands what ADHD can do to the relationship over time. That instead of judgment and blame, both of them should work together in addressing the issue. They have to remember that any relationship they bring themselves into is always going to be exciting and challenging. As long as they find it in their hearts, to be honest about their situation, they can eventually create solutions to reinvent themselves. As what psychiatrist EDWARD HALLOWELL, M.D. said, “A happy marriage takes work. A happy marriage to a spouse with ADHD takes more work.”