Don't Just Talk, Communicate

Good communication is the key to strong relationships. This is true for adults with and without attention deficit. The problem is, adults with ADHD often think that they’re communicating when really they’re just talking. How to get your feelings across effectively with friends and partners.

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Losing Focus

Problem: Switching subjects.
Conversations that suddenly change direction frustrate our non-ADHD partners. They dismiss what we’re saying if our talk is flighty, and it’s impossible to resolve an important issue if you introduce new issues before the original one has been resolved.

Be aware of this tendency and try to catch yourself as you change topics -- and enlist your partner’s help in staying on track. If a truly important issue occurs to you as you’re discussing something else, admit that you’re changing the topic, make your comment, then return to the topic at hand.

Problem: Tuning out his words.
Our busy brains are abuzz, especially when we’re feeling pressured or anxious, so we are scarcely able to listen to our partner -- never mind respond to him. It is impossible to maintain intimacy or resolve problems when you catch only a handful of words that your partner is saying.

When your partner is speaking to you, ask yourself: “Am I listening to him?” Remind yourself that your partner’s thoughts and words are important and that you need to attend to what he is saying.

Next: Becoming Confrontational

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TAGS: ADHD Communication Skills, ADHD and Relationships, ADHD Dating, ADHD Social Skills

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