I can attest to the fact that adult ADD can contribute to divorce. It was one of many factors contributing to mine.
Not surprisingly, ADD in children can play a role in divorce as well. Someone just mailed me this USA Today article: “Children Who Have ADHD Can Strain Marriages.”
I see that other publications have also reported on the research in question, some in more detail. But the USA Today article discusses a piece of the picture that people sometimes forget—genetics:
Because ADHD can be inherited, parents often have it too, and that may hinder marriage, says Andrea Chronis-Tuscano, a psychologist at the University of Maryland. If children have ADHD, their mothers are 24 times more likely than other mothers to have it, and fathers are five times more likely, her studies find. Adults with ADHD may be impulsive and find it hard to concentrate or solve problems.
"That can lead to conflict in marriage," she says, "and a child with ADHD only adds to the stress."
It’s a reminder that the big picture tends to be more complex than people often think it is.
At a CHADD conference once, I went to a talk on ADD and relationships. At some point, the presenter opened up the floor, and spouses of people with ADD started talking. What a lack of understanding, and what a lot of bitterness! I was cringing. At least one person with ADD confided in me later that she’d left the room because it was just too hard to listen.
It can be like that when you go to Ned Hallowell and Melissa Orlov’s blog and forum on ADD and marriage. On the other hand, you can also find balance and insight there. Orlov’s own posts stand out as honest and wise, sometimes providing a needed antidote to the resentment that can creep into the conversation.
Do be careful about wandering around the site if your self-esteem is a little out of shape. One person posted that she was glad she started with this thread instead of some of the others.
But the site provides a terrific opportunity for ADD and non-ADD partners to share their experiences. In the best posts and threads, the site is a great tool for building compassion—and, hopefully, better relationships.
Links to Online Guided Meditations Research suggests that meditation might help address the symptoms of ADD (and a lot of other conditions). But if you have ADD, you might find it hard to meditate. I compiled this list of online guided meditations. See if they help!