Valentine’s day is fast approaching, and that has me thinking about love and ADHD relationships. I think about love a lot, especially after enduring a divorce. I spent a lot of time after that divorce wondering if love was something I would ever find again. After all, it isn’t easy to be in love when you are messy, forgetful and chronically disorganized. I mean, I have a hard time finding my own belongings, how the hell am I supposed to find a partner?
Am I too complicated to love?
That brought me to another point about the ADHD relationship: dealing with so many symptoms over the years can leave you feeling perennially insecure. When you get into a relationship with someone, it is easy to wonder if they will be able to endure your particular brand of life.
I had to stop and realize that regardless of whether I have a disorder or not, that doesn’t define who I am as a person. ADHD doesn’t prevent me from loving, and being loved. Am I a complicated person? Absolutely. But good things don’t come easy, right?
ADHD Relationships Are Remarkable
ADHD relationships are really remarkable when you think about it, because you’re taking people who have been hurt, and you’re giving and receiving love. Most people with ADHD can tell you that dealing with people is one of the most complicated parts of managing the disorder. People misinterpret and don’t understand us at times, and that can leave us feeling isolated and afraid. When you find someone who is able to understand and have compassion for that? Oh, it is absolutely incredible. That’s something nobody wants to let go.
Struggling through the ADHD relationship is a stereotype most people with the disorder are used to hearing. We hear that no one can tolerate our symptoms, that we are complicated, difficult, and hard to love.
People Complain About Their ADHD Relationship
Forums are full of spouses who complain about the many ways their ADHD partners disappoint them. We make mistakes from forgetting anniversaries to failing to split housework evenly. This isn’t helpful for the person who has ADHD who is looking for love or working to keep love alive. If anything, this contributes to our feelings of inadequacy and makes us wonder if we are truly capable of maintaining a healthy relationship with anyone.
Really, when it comes to relationship struggles, isn’t that what the entire world is doing? The divorce rates are climbing, people seem more selfish, and we are all confused about the reasons why. Contrary to popular belief, to be in a relationship with someone who has ADHD can be fulfilling and fun.
The Other Side Of The Story
It is easy to find all of the reasons why loving someone with ADHD is difficult. That’s only one side of the story, and quite frankly it isn’t helpful to only hear one side. The ADHD relationship can be hard, but it can also be a source of love, support, strength, and peace. Love is love, whether the person who you love has a disorder or not.
5 Ways ADHD Relationships Are Remarkable
You’ve heard enough about the bad parts of loving someone with ADHD. Let me show you five ways that ADHD relationships are remarkable.
- Empathy – People who are living with ADHD every day know what it feels like to be down on themselves. When you come home from a long day at work, beaten down and feeling like nobody cares for you, you can count on your ADHD partner to understand. If you’re having trouble with a friend, we’re more than capable of empathizing with those feelings. Being in an ADHD relationship gives you access to someone who is able to empathize with you. Your partner will encourage you through your tough times.
- Creativity – If you’re looking for someone who is going to keep you entertained, you’ve come to the right place. One of the hallmarks of the ADHD relationship is creativity. We will pull out all of the stops to get your attention, and delight you. Whether it is taking you on a romantic date, giving you an amazing gift, or coming up with a surprise you would never have considered, we will do it! We know sometimes we miss the mark, so when we can, we love to spoil our partners.
- Spontaneity – Relationships can sometimes get into a rut, and eventually, lose their connection. ADHD relationships are exciting. If you live for order, we might not be the person for you. If you enjoy spontaneity, we have it in spades. People with ADHD can take you on a ride to a romantic spot they found, show you their favorite after-hours spot, or whisk you off on a vacation at the spur of the moment. You won’t get bored, that’s for sure!
- Sensitivity – Everybody wants someone who is going to be sensitive and understanding. People with ADHD are incredibly sensitive and intuitive. You can talk to us about anything, and we’ll be sure to help you. If you need a shoulder to cry on, we have one. If you need to vent it out, we’ll be there to lend an ear (though excuse us if we fidget, and don’t think that means we don’t care).
- Loyalty – Because people with ADHD have been hurt by people’s criticism and judgments so many times, we learn to be very loyal to the people who care for us. If you are hoping to have a partner who will be devoted to you, don’t think that you won’t find that in an ADHD relationship. On the contrary, it is difficult not to feel a bond with someone who takes the time to understand our disorder and the complications it can bring to our lives.
ADHD Relationships are complicated
Just like everything else, ADHD relationships are complicated. That doesn’t mean they can’t be beautiful. The problem with ADHD is that we oftentimes spend so much time focusing on the problems. We forget that people with ADHD are just that: we are people, not a problem to solve. Just like everyone else, we long to feel loved, wanted and admired. Though ADHD relationships aren’t easy, no relationship is.
For more on ADHD relationships, read:
If you’re ready to take control of your ADHD, read my ultimate guide to ADHD here!
What do you love most about YOUR relationship?