Many ADHDers I run into have no friends. I have not done a study on this "fact," nor have I consulted the Google Oracle for wisdom. I base this observation on conversations I've had with adult ADHDers who told me that they had no one who understood them, no one to let down their hair with.
I'm not an ADHDer who is chronically lonely, yet there are times when I am. Our loneliness is probably caused by:
> The inordinate amount of time that we "live in our head." One could argue we all live in our heads, but it is worse for some ADHDers, who have lots of thoughts, what Charles Parker calls "cognitive abundance."
> The imbalance of cognitive abundance and intelligence versus social skills. I've been astounded at the many intelligent ADHDers I've met who have done well in school. Yet, despite their success, they haven't been able to cultivate meaningful relationships until decades later, if ever.
> Feeling like a misfit. If an ADHDer were to adapt P.D. Eastman's famous book, Are You My Mother?, it would be retitled Are You an ADHDer? Many of us search for validation of who we are.
> Not being easy to be with. We may create the conditions that make friendships hard and, in some cases, impossible.
I hope that those who are diagnosed with ADHD at a young age can develop strategies to avoid the loneliness experienced by some late-diagnosed ADHDers.
By JEFF SIEGEL (from jeffsaddmind.com).
This article appears in the Fall issue of ADDitude.
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