When Your Child's ADHD Affects Your Relationship
7 Relationship Tips
These tips can strengthen your relationship as well as help your child:
1. Create structure and routine. Create a structure and routine for your day, suggests Wolraich. This will not only help your child with ADHD, but will allow you to carve out time that works for you and your partner to connect.
2. Listen and hear. "Learn how to listen to each other," Berman says. When your partner is talking, don't be thinking about your response -- really hear what they are saying. This will help you work through conflict, whether it's about your child's ADHD or something else.
3. Make house rules. "Create and agree on clear house rules with your partner," Wolraich says. If you are on the same page as to how to raise your children, both with and without ADHD, you’ll minimize the risk of unnecessary relationship discord over parenting approaches.
4. Communicate. "You really need to communicate effectively with your partner about your relationship," Berman says. "Parents with a child with ADHD tend to put the child’s needs first, which is understandable. But spend time on the needs of the relationship as well, and learn what those needs are through strong communication."
5. Share the load. Try to keep your parenting balanced, so one person isn’t bearing a heavier load. "Two parents working together makes caring for a child with ADHD easier," Wolraich says. Sharing the responsibility also reduces the risk of conflict and resentment in your relationship, he explains.
6. Keep adjusting. "You have to learn to adjust," Dickson says. You have to learn to live with your child's ADHD diagnosis and learn to work around it in ways that are right for your child, and for your partner.
7. Prioritize "us" time. Carve out time for you and your partner on a regular basis, away from the kids, just the two of you, recommends Berman. "Every relationship needs to be nurtured," she says. "Especially if you have a child with ADHD, it’s so important that you focus on each other."