This week, Imagine Hope is discussing how ADHD impacts marriage and the marital relationship. Adults with ADHD tend to be scattered in their thinking and easily distracted. This can make it very difficult to have meaningful conversations and stay on one topic without jumping from subject to subject. Have you ever struggled with your spouse "chasing squirrels" in conversation? For example, you might be sharing something emotional that happened to you during the day, or something you are excited about in your life, and your spouse gets distracted by their own thoughts or they veer off topic with seemingly random subjects.
It's important to realize that your spouse getting off topic and becoming easily distracted by things outside of your conversation or focus is NOT because what you are sharing isn't important to them. If it is truly ADHD, it's much more likely that the way their brain is wired creates difficulty in staying on task. While this can be extremely frustrating to the listener, this is also frustrating to the individual that struggles with ADHD.
What can you do? Bring them back to the focus of what you are discussing, without being shaming or critical. Gently remind them about what the original topic was and help to redirect the conversation. This can be very difficult for individuals with ADHD, because EVERYTHING seems relevant, and their brain has trouble sorting information for staying on topic.
Did you recognize any symptoms of ADHD in your marriage? We hope this week's blog helped you identify areas you might be struggling with!
Joleen Watson, MS, NCC, is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. She enjoys doing marriage counseling, relationship counseling, couples counseling, and individual counseling. Imagine Hope also specializes in family, child and adolescent counseling and serves Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield, and Fishers.