I have ADHD and My Wife Hates Me | What Shall I Do?
Adult Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) characteristics such as distractibility, disorganization, and impulsivity can negatively impact many aspects of life. Still, the symptoms of ADHD can be especially troublesome in relationships.
Misunderstandings, irritation, and resentment can wreak personal relationships when both partners have ADHD. The good news is that understanding how ADHD affects your relationship can help you establish methods and techniques to better communicate with your partner and, as a result, develop a healthier, happier relationship.
Adult ADHD Symptoms: What You Need to Know
A persistent pattern of inattention and hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning (in more than one area) for at least six months is the diagnostic trait of ADHD. Adult hyperactivity frequently emerges as restlessness or exhaustion from others.
- Failure to pay serious attention to the finer points of a situation
- Difficulty recalling facts Difficulty adhering to instructions
- Having trouble concentrating or staying on task
- Task organization issues
- Completing work on time is proving difficult.
- Lateness and forgetfulness regularly.
- Interruptions or making crucial decisions without consulting others are examples of social intrusiveness.
- Hyper-focus: Intense concentration on items of interest (e.g., online shopping, video games) or rewarding/stimulating work.
- Unpredictable behavior
- Inadequate planning
- Easily agitated with a fiery temper
- It’s challenging to sit motionlessly.
- Talking too much
- Bored easily
Adult ADHD Symptoms that Interfere with Relationships
Understanding the symptoms that have the most significant impact on your partner is the most challenging aspect of making the necessary changes to improve your relationship. You can learn to manage your symptoms once you understand how they affect your behavior with your partner.
Adult ADHD is difficult to diagnose because symptoms differ from person to person. These symptoms can have an impact on how you interact with your partner:
Adults with ADHD can lose focus during conversations, making their partners feel undervalued. Inattention can also lead to you agreeing to things without thinking about them, which you will later regret. This is aggravating and can lead to resentment.
Forgetfulness: Even when adults with ADHD are paying attention, they may forget what they are talking about. Others may perceive the person as untrustworthy or incapable due to this.
Impulsivity is a symptom of adult ADHD that can cause frequent interruptions in conversations or yelling out of thoughts without regard for others’ feelings. This can lead to a lot of resentment.
Disorganization: Having trouble organizing and completing tasks can cause chaos in the home. This can lead to regret and frustration towards the partner, who may believe they do more work at home.
Excessive rage: Many adults with ADHD struggle to control their emotions. This can lead to enraged outbursts that leave partners hurt or afraid.
While the partner with ADHD may feel micromanaged and overburdened with criticism, the non-ADHD partner may feel isolated, lonely, or undervalued. Instead of blaming one another for a relationship breakdown, it’s critical to focus on how ADHD symptoms affect the relationship.
Adults with ADHD may appear to be less hyperactive than children. Still, they, too, struggle with paying attention, staying on task, and avoiding impulsive behavior.
A few helpful strategies
When one partner has ADHD, communication often breaks down. Frequently, outward behaviors (e.g., she’s always late for dinner) conceal a more problematic issue (he feels a lack of appreciation because she never shows up on time.)
Couples often fall into a “parent-child” dynamic, in which the non-ADHD partner feels in charge of everything while the ADHD partner feels like a child. For the ADHD spouse, this cycle of micromanaging and underachievement can lead to feelings of shame and insecurity.
Couples who look for improvement in their communication skills might bring their relationship back into equilibrium. To communicate effectively with your partner, try the following strategies:
Focus on Feelings
To focus on feelings and prevent blaming, use “I feel” words. Face-to-face communication should be used as much as possible; nonverbal cues are crucial.
Repetition and reiteration – repeat what your spouse says and ask for clarification to keep your mind from wandering. Important points from the conversation should be texted to yourself (especially if your partner asks you to assist with specific tasks)
talk about the way your symptoms affect your ability to recall information and do tasks. Sharing your difficulties with your relationship can help them understand how ADHD affects your behavior.
Maintain eye contact
Consider a fidget device like a squeeze ball to keep your mind occupied during extended chats.
Concentrate on teamwork
Two partners must collaborate to achieve relationship balance. If you have ADHD, it doesn’t mean you can’t find balance; it means you’ll have to depend on open and honest conversation and feedback to figure out how to help each other.
Divide the Tasks
Tasks should be divided according to strengths. If your ADHD makes it hard for you to pay bills on time or manage your finances, delegate that responsibility to your partner. Couples who divide duties according to their strengths get through their to-do lists without feeling overburdened or resentful.
Examine your workload
Schedule a weekly meeting at a scheduled time to discuss the burden and rebalance the tasks, if one of you feels workload. A weekly check-in allows you to assess how you’re doing with your household chores and whether you need to make any changes.
Weekly check-ins are also a terrific way to calm down and connect and arrange time together to build your relationship. When one partner has ADHD, relationships can rapidly become overwhelmed by the need to work together on activities to avoid frustration. Still, it’s just as crucial to spend time together and enjoy each other’s company.
You and your partner don’t have to take care of every detail of your home on your own (mainly if failure to complete tasks is a common problem impacting your relationship.) Assign age-appropriate duties to help keep the house organized if you have children. Adults with ADHD may benefit significantly from automatic bill payments. A monthly cleaning service is also an option if you can afford it.
Continually rely on routines
Routines, schedules, and visual planners (think wall-size whiteboard calendars) help adults with ADHD plan ahead, stay on track, and finish critical chores. Couples with ADHD can focus more on connection than completing tasks and duties when they adopt organizing systems to take some guessings out of the daily grind.