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How Learning to Listen Might Save Your Marriage

Whether you're married, dating, or in a long-term romantic relationship, ADHD can take a serious toll on both partners' communication skills. A new kind of couple's therapy may be the solution.

3 Comments: How Learning to Listen Might Save Your Marriage

  1. What happens when, as the nonADD spouse, I use language that focuses only on me but the ADD spouse completely shuts down and can’t/won’t/doesn’t respond? When I say things like “I am feeling very ignored and lonely,” he either stares at me, or says that I shouldn’t feel that way. At some point he said something like that he doesn’t feel or respond to emotion. What then?

    1. Many Non’s end up “Stuffing It”, because they believe saying nothing is better than the reaction they receive from their ADHD partner. This fosters resentment, and communication becomes non existent. Melissa offers so much helpful advice..but many couples continue to have problems because they are married to someone who is in denial about how their ADHD is affecting their marriage.

    2. Feeling lonely focuses on your feelings, but if you lead with feeling ignored, you’re blaming him and that is why he is shutting down (ignored is one of the words listed as an example of blame above). In my experience, having ADHD, I’m incredibly sensitive to others feelings which can be a great thing in certain situations but it makes me more fragile in close relationships. If someone approaches me with any amount of judgement or resentment I’ll feel it and shame responses will emerge (fight, flight, or freeze). If you really want to resolve things don’t approach your husband with your feelings until you’re sure you can speak to him without judging/blaming him.

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