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Archives for ADHD - Page 2

ADHD

Employment and Your Partner with ADHD

I wasn't terribly surprised this morning when my client with ADHD, whom I've been working with on and off since last spring, told me that her job search had lapsed since I last met with her in June. Given the state of the economy and the particular competitive field she is in, it's not exactly fun and motivating to look for employment right now. She has the best of intentions, but it...
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ADHD

What Works When Your Partner Is Ill?

When your partner is not feeling well, it's natural to become reactive, doing whatever it takes to get through the current crisis of the moment, and hoping this is the last time.

Taking a more proactive approach to managing the symptoms of your partner's illness, however, is more effective and empowering, both for you and your partner as individuals, and for your relationship as a whole. Working together to identify a "What Works" list that can...
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ADHD

Sleep and Your Partner With Mental Illness

Sleep is one of those things that we take for granted when it's going well, and spend a lot of time complaining about when it's not.

Sleep issues are one of the top complaints my clients have when talking about what's not going well in their lives. It's estimated that 65-90% of people with depression experience insomnia, while on the other end of the spectrum, people who are in a depressive phase of bipolar...
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ADHD

Every Partner’s Illness Is Unique…Just Like Everyone Else

At a recent Grand Rounds lecture I attended at Duke, the speaker told us that he had asked some statisticians to look at the diagnostic criteria for depression listed in the DSM-IV-TR.

Given how the criteria is described in the bible of psychiatric diagnoses, they determined there are 1,099 different combinations of symptoms that can lead to a diagnosis of depression.

So, if you sometimes look at your partner and wonder if what you are experiencing as...
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ADHD

What Your Partner With ADHD Would Like You to Know

My previous post on what people with depression would like their partners to know was quite popular, so I thought perhaps I'd give a voice to patients who struggle with other mental health concerns. This time, we're going to hear from the folks with adult ADHD.

Adults with ADHD are often misunderstood by others around them--after all, there's still the widespread perception that ADHD is a kids thing, and really,...
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ADHD

Your Partner is Not Their Diagnosis

It's an easy trap to fall into: "I'm bipolar"...."My partner is OCD"...."She's anorexic"...."He's borderline"...

Describing your partner as the illness, instead of as having an illness, can make a subtle (or sometimes not so subtle) impact on both your and your partner's perceptions of them, their capabilities, and their hope for recovery. It implies that the illness is woven into the fabric of your partner's being, and that things will never improve.

Saying your partner has bipolar,...
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ADHD

It’s Not Just for Kids: Your Partner with ADHD (Part 2)

Last week, Part 1 of this entry had some quick facts about adult ADHD, and discussed two of the four top issues that affect the relationships of adults with ADHD: relating to others and success at work.

Today covers the remaining top issues adults with ADHD have in relationships: contributing equally at home and sexual functioning.

3. Contributing equally at home: As mentioned in the previous post, having a partner...
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ADHD

It’s Not Just For Kids: Your Partner with ADHD (Part 1)

Your partner forgot to pick up the kids at daycare, again.

The dinner with friends was going great until your partner suddenly made a blunt comment that hurt your best friend's feelings.

You try to have a conversation with your partner, but always feel as if their attention is elsewhere, or they get up abruptly and walk away when you are mid-sentence, or they fiddle with whatever is within reach and wiggle in their chair like they...
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ADHD

Connecting With Others When Your Partner is Ill

A few posts ago, I wrote about whether you should keep your partner's illness a secret. Chances are that you have some pretty strong feelings one way or the other about how much disclosure is necessary, and who needs to know about your private life. But no matter what level of sharing about your partner's illness you feel is appropriate, you still need support and other social outlets. Connecting with others is part...
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ADHD

Mental Illness or Personality Traits?: The Roots of “Bad” Behavior in Your Partner

When you look at the list of symptoms for various mental illnesses, they can sometimes parallel the traits we generally do not desire in a partner, such as:

lack of interest in activities
mood shifts (often unexpected)
elevated self-esteem
impairment in completing activities
irritability

How do you know if your partner's behaviors are truly due to mental illness or if they are just personality characteristics? And what do you do if you suspect that your partner is blaming their behavior on...
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