When I work late at night, I often return home to find my kids asleep on the couch, still dressed. My ADHD spouse seems too lazy to get up, read to them, and get them under the covers. What do I do?
by Melissa Orlov
I hate to hear the word "lazy" applied to someone with ADHD. Usually, that's a misinterpretation of one or more symptoms. Most likely, he has trouble initiating things (is a procrastinator) or is too distracted (gets lost in a TV show). In some cases, people with ADHD don't do things because they don't know what to do first, or they are exhausted.
Talk with your husband to figure out which of these symptoms might be at play. To counter procrastination and distraction, place a noisy alarm or two on the other side of the room. If he has trouble sorting out what to do, write a list of steps to be followed on a piece of cardboard, and place it in a can't-miss location. If fatigue is the problem, look into whether or not he has a sleep disorder, and work with either a sleep clinic or an ADHD coach to help him improve the quality and amount of shuteye he gets. Finally, have a calm, nonjudgmental conversation with him, telling him how important getting the kids to bed is to you and how his lack of participation upsets you.