7 Ways Adults With ADHD Can Improve Their Relationships

Ryan and Andrea Mayer on Honeymoon

Have you experienced relationship challenges due to your ADHD? You’re not alone. This is a common topic for many of my coaching clients with ADHD. Let’s dive deeper into why adults with ADHD may struggle in relationships and then explore some ways to improve!

Why Do People With ADHD Have Difficulties Maintaining Relationships?

People with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) may have difficulties maintaining relationships due to symptoms such as impulsiveness, inattentiveness, disorganization, forgetfulness, and emotional dysregulation. These symptoms can lead to misunderstandings, conflicts, and poor communication in relationships. The ADHD struggle is real! 

Additionally, impulsivity can result in actions that damage trust, while inattentiveness can make it hard for the person with ADHD to follow through on commitments or show interest in their partner’s life after the hyperfocus honeymoon stage is over. Yes, that is a real thing…especially for people with ADHD! It’s important to note that every individual with ADHD is unique and the impact of ADHD on relationships can vary greatly.

Adults With ADHD Can Improve Relationships by Managing ADHD Symptoms and Engaging in Open and Honest Communication With Their Partners.

Some strategies that may be helpful include:

1. Seek Support To Learn Strategies To Improve ADHD Symptoms and Gain Total Self Acceptance

Having ADHD is hard. However people with ADHD can be the hardest on themselves. Joining a supportive group or a Certified ADHD Coaching session can provide ADHD friendly tools and strategies to improve the relationship with yourself! When you have other people with ADHD in your corner, you can feel less lonely, more accepted and start learning to love yourself first. Certified ADHD Group Coaching can help you to gain total unconditional acceptance of yourself and start focusing on your strengths. Book a free call with Certified ADHD Coach Ryan. Once you learn to love yourself, then you can have more success in relationships!

2. Seek Treatment and Education for ADHD

Treatment such as medication, therapy, and coaching can help manage symptoms of ADHD and improve overall functioning. Speak to your ADHD healthcare provider to put a plan in place. It is common for ADHD couples to struggle with money management….ADHD and budgeting do not typically go together. 😅  An ADHD Money Coach can help get both partners on the same page with spending!

3. Help Your Partner Better Understand the Symptoms of ADHD

Learning more about ADHD symptoms can be beneficial for you and your partner. Read and encourage your partner to read as much as possible about ADHD! Once you both understand what effect ADHD has on the relationship, it is easier to put the blame on ADHD rather than each other. Check out the book The ADHD Effect on Marriage.

4. Establish Regular Routines and Schedules for ADHD

My wife and I share a digital calendar. Any time we make appointments, we have a rule that we need to put it in there. Sometimes my ADHD makes me avoid opening the calendar, so I am sure to text my wife and she adds it to the schedule! Also, if there is anything we know we need to accomplish together, we book a time for it in the shared calendar. That helps my ADHD brain to avoid the frustration of double booking and forgetting things! ADHD Coaching can help to build strong routines and habits.

5. Strengthen Communication Skills despite your ADHD

Learning effective communication skills such as active listening, giving eye contact, and expressing empathy can help prevent misunderstandings and improve relationships. My wife and I hold hands when we are having a difficult conversation. That can be a good way to stay connected through the storms. Also, one easy way to improve your communication is by putting away your phone. Give your partner your full attention without distractions. Intentionally putting down your phone demonstrates to your partner that they are more important to you than anything that might be on your screen.

6. Practice Mindfulness to Slow Down Your Busy ADHD Brain

Mindfulness and self-awareness can help the person with ADHD recognize and manage impulsiveness and emotional dysregulation. My wife and I spend 5 minutes together at the end of the day meditating, sharing gratitude statements for each other and connecting after a long day apart. It can seem inconvenient in the moment, but always worth it. Try it and let me know how it goes!

7. Be Proactive and Show Your Partner Love by Using the Creative Side of Your ADHD 

Anticipating challenges in relationships and proactively addressing them can help prevent conflicts from escalating. If you have ADHD, your anger may escalate very quickly. 🫣 Learn your partner’s love language and do something special for them to show that you care! Learn what aggravates your partner and try to avoid those things! My wife knows that a kind word can quickly fill my love tank due to my ADHD emotions.

Conquer Your ADHD and Improve Relationships One Day at a Time.

It’s important to keep in mind that managing ADHD symptoms is a lifelong process and requires consistent effort and commitment. There is no quick fix to ADHD. However, with the right support and strategies such as Certified ADHD Coaching and working on communication skills, people with ADHD can improve relationships and lead fulfilling, happy lives. 💘

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About Ryan Mayer

Professional Life Coach Ryan Mayer is an Accountability and Mindset Coach, specializing in working with adult men and women with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
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