I’ve always known this was important, but not until this day did I realize JUST how important it is and the dire consequences of not doing so. I’ve been betrayed in a way that feels as if my entire being has fallen apart, as if everything I held true is no more, as if not just a rug but the entire world has been pulled out from under my feet. It has made the need of recognizing and treating ADHD and the impulsivity of relationships all the more relevant and important.
I’ve always been one to fall in love quickly, to establish friendships right away, and to be open and trusting before I know someone. I’ve always felt many people did not bode well with this, and I did not understand why people would not, until today. For the first time ever I have realized that people don’t just have faults and make mistakes, but they can intentionally set out to hurt you in ways you might never imagine.
I’m not going to get into what happened, but let’s just say after a few months of getting to know someone I put all of my being in their hands. They knew me better than anyone, I felt, and would never harm me or think ill of me or try to hurt me, emotionally or physically. I was sucked in before I could question if that was really rational.
It has made me realize the real importance of surrounding yourself with the right people, not just in theory but in truth. And the ‘right’ people, I have found, are much different than what I pictured them to be. I’ve put a list together of questions that I plan to use in the future, so that if I spend time with someone for five minutes, an hour, or ten hours, I still use these questions to guide me on who I choose to spend my time with:
- How long have their friends known them, and what do they say about them?
- Do they motivate others through fear or love?
- Do they have your best interests at heart?
- Do they try to control you or encourage you?
- Are they open and willing to put things in writing?
- Do they respect others when there is a difference of opinion?
- Can they admit they are wrong with you? With others?
- Do they already exhibit the kinds of values you want to be around, or do you think they are able to exhibit those values? If the latter, question that assumption.
- Do they know your faults and accept you for them?
- Do they try to help you find ways to reduce your symptoms of ADHD and understand the consequences of not helping you do so?
- Are they willing to work with you on ADHD to bring out the best in it, as opposed to the worst in it?
- Do we consistently feel the same way?
I try to always see the good in people, and that they will want the best for me and the world no matter what. I’m honestly in shock at how I was led astray by this, simply because I jumped into a relationship impulsively, believed them when they said I was the best person in the world. I could not imagine trying to intentionally hurt someone and believed that good always conquers evil. What I have realized is you have to stick up for yourself, immediately, if you want that good to conquer evil.
So today seems to be a good time to remind all of you ADHDers to learn from my mistakes – hopefully so you can prevent from making them yourself. We have a tendency to jump into relationships because it feels good at the time, but it is really good and what kinds of questions do we use to decide that?
I suggest you all think about that, and take some time to develop questions that are relevant to you. Take a look at who is in your life now and how they are adding to your richness or taking away from it. If you question it at all, check in with people you have known a long time and trust to see things from their perspective.
Please share any additional questions you find helpful.
Sending love to you all.