Published on ADDitudeMag.com

Online Dating and the ADD Buddy System

I made the most of being jobless in January. Dated, drafted a resume, and partnered with a woman who has ADHD.

by Jane D.


I'm lucky. In my newly laid-off life, I am still getting dates. I've been asked out by a string of guys who I've met or kept in contact with from the Internet dating days. I've been rather enjoying the free meals and the company. It breaks up the monotony of the day—which would otherwise be spent sleeping in late, worrying about health insurance for the attention deficit disorder medication (ADD/ADHD), and briefing the boss, aka the Dad, on the jobs I’ve applied to.

The latest guy was the wealthy lawyer with a big ego. We shared sushi and laughs. He has a wry sense of humor, a bit of a potty mouth. I feel inadequate next to him though. I am overshadowed by his undergrad Ivy League status and this Alpha job that he has.

Two weeks ago though, I took a great leap forward and paired up with this girl from the ADHD support group I attended a year ago. The guinea pig group.

The new ADHD buddy—who I will call Sarah—is around my age, early 30s, an artist, like me, and after the New Year, she decided that she wanted to give the ADHD buddy system a go. I say this with a bit of sarcasm because I've had fitness buddies before and made a million New Year’s resolutions, only to find that each one fizzles as quickly as the idea emerges.

Sarah and I made a pact that we would meet or connect once a week, compare weekly goals with each other, and give each other affirmations. We met for coffee the first time and ended up spending two hours covering ground from our shaky confidences to our penchant for dating bad boys (or men who are stimulating).

I told her about this book, A.D.D and Romance book that I found at the Barnes and Nobles. It is by Jonathan Scott Halverstadt, and how I thought it pretty much describes all of the roadblocks that ADDers face with Cupid—a need for constant stimulation, lack of impulse control, inattention to detail...the laundry list runs on.

Today, Sarah and I connected by phone, and I told her that in the past two weeks I'd taken a few steps forward and a few steps back. I completed a solid draft of a resume for the job hunt, and I found an ace CV writer in the case that my own resume doesn't work. I took a few steps back because I continue to sleep in, and continue in my night-owl mode.

On the bright side, I said, I retain a sharp sense of humor. On the date Friday night, I made the pompous lawyer laugh when I told him about my pelican story.

The pelican story goes like this: I will be swimming a marathon swim in Florida come April with a relay partner. The partner shared a story about a woman who did the swim last year, but suffered 300 stitches on her face after a pelican mistook her for a fish and dove on her face. I suggested to the partner that one of us should have a warning signal for the other, in case we saw a pelican come our way, or perhaps bring along a gun and shoot the bird if it did a nose dive on us. "I can't do that," the partner said. "It is illegal to shoot a pelican." The lawyer loves the wit. (Not every social gathering is a success, of course. Read these tips on how to stop impulsive speech and unwelcome spontaneity.)

There is something a bit loopy and offbeat about the ADD sense of humor. At one point he told me about a restaurant called "Canyon Ranch," and I remembered it as "Cactus Ranch." "Hey that's not a bad name either," he said.

"It sounds like the title for a horror movie," I quipped. He burst into laughter. "It's brilliant," he said. Sometimes the brilliance shines through.


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