What It's Like Loving Someone With ADD/ADHD


Love... is not a simple thing. It comes in different forms, ways and expressions, and it is anything but easy. However, if you love or have loved someone with ADD or ADHD, you will know what I will be talking about. If you are curious about people with this condition, or you have someone in your life with it, reading this MyTake can give you a bit of insight on what it actually feels like to love someone with ADD/ADHD. Let`s dive in!

Background information

First of all, let me explain my familiarity with ADD. My current boyfriend of almost one year suffers from it, and our relationship has been on the rocks several times due to my ignorance. I do believe that understanding the condition can help anyone in any situation with people with ADD or ADHD. You cannot love someone without understanding them, be it romantic partners or family members. Hopefully, through this MyTake, you can learn a bit about how they think, react and act in romantic relationships as well as social- and family situations.

You cannot love someone without understanding them.

What Its Like Loving Someone With ADD/ADHD

What you should know about people with ADD/ADHD.

In order to understand a person with ADD/ADHD completely, it is important to get an overview of a few things to know about them beforehand. Here are a few examples:

1. They do not act the way they do on purpose. People with ADD/ADHD tend to say and do things without thinking, and they can often be interpreted as mean or inconsiderate. As it can be hurtful and disappointing to hear something like that from a loved one, ADD/ADHD sufferers rarely mean everything they say. The solution here is communication, and be sure to tell them where the boundaries are.

2. They are trying, even if it does not seem that way. People with ADD/ADHD are fighting a constant battle with themselves on a daily basis. They WANT to perform daily activities, but sometimes they just cant`t. Their mind can be anywhere at anytime, and their focus can be nonexistent. If you are a parent, friend or lover of someone with ADD/ADHD, it is better to give them confidence and time to express themselves. Patience is key!

3. They can easily lose their focus. If your child is struggling with getting the homework done, seems to be in a different world most of the time and makes a lot of questionable choices, chances are they have ADD/ADHD. Same goes for romantic partners who struggle with concentrating on just you for too long, or they get involved in many different activities. One of the biggest signs is that they easily lose their focus, because their mind likes to focus on many different things at once.

4. They can seem lazy, messy and unintelligent, but it`s actually quite the contrary. People with ADD/ADHD can be often seen in isolation from their friends and family. They enjoy time on their own with their own thoughts. However, since they struggle with daily activities such as taking out garbage, cleaning and working, they can be seen as lazy and unintelligent. This is not the case! Their mind is just everywhere and disorganized, so it is hard to keep life in the same order as a "normal" person would. They just need a little kick, patience and understanding. But people with ADD/ADHD are honestly the most intelligent people I have met.

5. They do not want you to treat them like their parent if you aren`t. If you are a friend or romantic partner, it might seem like they are expecting you to do all the work for them. This is not true! Most of the time, they are just oblivious to the fact that work needs to be done. All you have to do is ask, and they will eventually come around to do it. I must admit, I have felt like my boyfriend`s mom several times, but I have to learn that he is more than capable of doing those things himself.

How can you live and deal with someone with ADD/ADHD?

From what you have previously read, being involved with a person with this condition seems very hard and challenging. And I am not going to lie- it is! You feel the pressure to help them in every way possible, and if you don`t, it is your fault. Learn to let this feeling go, because you are, after all, dealing with an adult (unless it is your child). Here are a few tips for dealing with your friend, partner or family member:

1. Try and see it from their perspective.

2. Be patient and understanding.

3. Make sure to say sorry if you got mad for reasons they cannot control.

4. Communicate!!

5. Educate yourself about their behavior.

Anyway, that`s all I got for today`s MyTake! Let me know what you guys think below :)

What It's Like Loving Someone With ADD/ADHD
Add Opinion

Most Helpful Guys

  • AD240pCharlie
    I would like to add a few things based on my own ADHD:
    1. Everyone with the condition handles it differently. For some people, it may not even be noticable until you really get to know them, while others have very clear signs from the very beginning. The way it shows itself is also very different. Some people are very talkative, others very hyper, others impulsive or simply lack focus. The only way to truly know what their struggles are is to ask them. Go ahead, we won't be offended, we know we have it.
    2. It often doesn't matter if we're interested or not. Even if it's an activity we love, a movie we can name every single line in or the company is full of people we enjoy spending time with, we might still have a lot of struggles concentrating on it.
    3. In my personal experience, it's less about not being able to concentrate period, and more about not being able to concentrate on ONE thing. Our brains are constantly interrupted in its efforts by external stimuli, other people or even our own thoughts. If we want to focus on one thing, we have to deliberately concentrate on concentrating, which gets very mentally draining quickly.
    4. Most importantly, in my opinion at least: Even if we often can't help it, that doesn't mean that you should just let us get away with things. Yes, be patient and understanding, but don't just shrug everything off with "Well, it's fine, he/she can't help it". ADD/ADHD can be an explanation but not an excuse.
    Is this still revelant?
    • ragequeen

      Can I message you? I have a few questions about my boyfriend's behavior and I need to know if it's ADD or something else...

    • Sure. Just know that, like I said, my experience with it will not be the same as everybody elses.

  • Hermes-Paris
    I learned later in life after failing in marriage and other things that I was indeed ADD. For those who think we are just lazy and not caring it is not the case. Our minds are everywhere opening new things and solving new problems before we finish the last. Each day is a struggle really. But they generally are creative and mostly intelligent people. The best thing is to understand and just be the safety net for things that are important like banking taxes insurance bills. We will forget or get thinking about something else. And we forget birthdays events anniversaries so having reminders around helps us. A calendar with a big red circle is great. Organizing a house and cleaning up a house can take me all day sometimes. But show me a problem at work and I will come up with a great creative solution that works long before the engineers and operators do.
    Is this still revelant?

Most Helpful Girls

  • Anonymous
    I have ADHD, and my ex's insensitivity towards me drove me to cheating until I eventually left him.
    he was very frustrated that I would forget things all the time, like my keys and call me an idiot.
    He acted like my dad more than my boyfriend and started controlling who I could hang out with, etc. Because he felt I was irresponsible.
    I am very intelligent. My IQ is in the 90th percentile and I've always worked or achieved higher education. I could probably cure cancer lol. Despite that, I can't do housework or cook lol and that drove him nuts.
    I have problems reading directions. I'll read like two sentences and think I have the rest figured out. So dinner never really comes out right lol
    It was a disaster relationship. I really need to be with someone who appreciates my strengths and can with without me being domesticated
    Is this still revelant?
    • Jamie05rhs

      Your ex was an asshole. The way he treated you was extremely inconsiderate. I would even call it abusive.

    • Anonymous

      @Jamie05rhs thank you. It probably was abusive. Unfortunately, I left him too late, now nobody wants me at my age 😢

    • Jamie05rhs

      Well, you're not alone. A lot of us "old people" are in the same boat! For what it's worth.

    • Show All
  • Desconhecida
    This was a wonderful and kind way to explain the struggles of an adult with ADHD. I wrote a similar myTake about it, from my perspective as someone who struggles with this for more than a decade.
    Reading the perspective from someone who loves one of us was a gift. Your boyfriend is a lucky man and you are showing him the greatest proof of your love by trying to understand him better and admiring all of his hidden skills.

    Thank you so much for writing this article.
    Is this still revelant?

Scroll Down to Read Other Opinions

What Girls & Guys Said

  • OlderAndWiser
    @Desconhecida may want to render an opinion on this topic.
  • PBandJ_Nerd
    I've had ADD since childhood and it does seem to make a difference. But I know I'd always try to focus on my homework when I was younger as best as I could. Even now while I'm just around the house I still clean, make my own meals, do my laundry, shower, etc. Since I haven't done any working as in job wise I've been off my vyvanse since somewhere in May and I seem to be doing just fine. I still need to probably clean more around here though (I use to clean all of the time after i graduated high school). But that could also be because of some new flooring. I always tend to be jumping from one thing to another in my mind. lol I'm not sure if I'm the only one that feels like this but to me it seems odd now that I'd have to interact and communicate with people who don't have ADD/ADHD. I mean, throughout school all of the best friends I've made have ADHD and it feels odd because you know, in adulthood you don't have a classroom that's specifically for people with learning problems. So you have to figure out how to communicate with regular people.
  • zollo
    This is why it's so important that I have my meds! I literally used to think I was just forever dumb, I was bad at everything school related except art and music. I got bad grades and I had trouble doing my homework, even though I would sit and try it was sooo boring and hard to concentrate, I would always end up doodling on the side of the paper. I was so fucking annoying to my siblings and even to myself, It was hard to stay in one place and sit still and I was often so bothersome XD. Even later for things that I loved to do like artwork I would have a hard time getting it done because my mind wouldn't focus on it and I would always want to get up and go outside or in my sisters room every 5 minutes.

    Once I started taking my meds I unlocked my potential, I was really good in class, I still didn't get straight A's but I would always get homework done and finish assignments on time. I was ACTUALLY smart. I was able to focus inside AND outside of school on things I needed and wanted to do. It would no longer take me hours after waking up just to sit down and start my work. I didn't forget what I was saying/ thinking all the time. The only thing I wish is that my doctor would understand that I actually need to take it everyday instead of only when I need to work, it doesn't just help me focus on work but just behave normally and have my thoughts be much less disorganized.
  • miniminimoon
    I actually have a crush on a guy with ADHD. This helps a lot. And I agree with everything you said. At first I thought he was just lazy but he's actually a very hard worker. And he is extremely intelligent.
  • Scarecrow13
    I grew up with it. All throughout school it was hard to concentrate. I am not an any medications anymore but even now I am absent minded, still constantly losing things. I'm sure it takes a lot of patients.
  • Avaemmaa
    My ex a long time ago has this. The only thing was he always was on the go. I never got his time unless we moved out of town
  • 3dbrah
    I have ADHD meditation can help with focus. I also avoid caffeine and sugary foods/drinks. Its not needed but it helps stabilize energy levels. To do lists are also helpful. Use them as a sacred thing, not something to write on and discard it quickly.
  • just_a_potato
    This is wonderful! I wish there was something like this for dyslexia, my current boyfriend is dyslexic and I can't count how many times I became frustrated with him, not remembering that important fact.
  • AaronKrieger
    Nice MyTake, but you can't forget about those that take medication for it. I take adderall for ADD during the school year and when it first takes effect it's harder to talk casually, since you're basically like a zombie.
  • Pete671
    I'm ADD/inattentive ADHD and I 'm really hard work for others sometimes, it's weird, eg if it takes less physical effort to put some rubbish in a bin, than leave it lying around, I'll still leave it lying around, because I can't focus,,,
    Strange thing is I created and lead a volunteer litter picking group, where I flip into OCD mode, like I need a balance if that makes sense?,,,
  • karolframirez
    To me, having ADHD means that I have to constantly tell people that I know how to do something, but I need my time to focus.
    Some people understand, but other people just just treat me like a dumb b*tch.
    Now days I'm very confident about myself and I'm living in peace with my ADHD, but as a child/teenager I was really hard with myself, and I used to believe that I was dumb af.
  • Dear990
    omg thanks for understanding me. At least I know there is people in this world that actually understands me. I tend to carry myself well. And when I tell people I have ADHD their always appalled, and question me. I show my true colors if I actually know you and or comfortable being around you. Thats why I consider myself a loner cause not a lot of people would not understand me.
  • FrePhill
    17 December 2013, Amy Goodman did a great news story on ADHD with Dr. Gabor Maté author of book, Scattered. This book helped me a lot with a few students, but in general a great book on human behaviorial studies too. Democracy Now! has done a few really great interviews about danger of stressful environment by living in contestant hegemony empire and class war.
  • charlesG
    It´s kind of like "head injury" they are having to deal with their own defencesive deals in life. I guess abnormal things are just about the same. They are all suvivers of there own problems.
  • mrgspoter
    I dont belive a lot of these are real problems it can be a advantage of dealt with good and not view as this shocking problem, I've known a few they just needed some real help towards it not tablets n medication that normal makes em worse in long run.
  • CuteNerd9
    I have ADD and you've hit so many points correctly. Thank you for writing this!
    • I do too except that I've always worked very hard and even if I have a hard getting myself to want to work I go to work as I've had a job since 6th grade so I think it's more of a generation thing for job hopping and /or not going to work!

    • CuteNerd9

      Oh I agree. I've always worked hard myself. In fact I currently own a business with some friends and before that I was the director of operations of a tech company.

  • I know it would be a difficult task but I would do my damnedest to make it work if you love someone you have to make it work and if you can't get it to where you both need to be then there's no point in trying anymore
  • OpenNudist
    Loveing Someone is more intense than looking Forward Individually into my reflection upon a Cup of coffee, I love myself that much!!
  • amaryanski
    Both me and my boyfriend have it, me with ADD and him with ADHD. It's great because we both understand what's happening with each other when things happen like losing focus during convo and there's no need to explain. :)
  • Jaximus-Lion
    I never had problems with those who have ADD/ADHD and honestly! I don't get why people overreact when they here about those who has it. All i did is read about it, 2 of my best friends , both females who has ADHD and one of theme has the aggressive sort and things can go out of control really fast but i know what she is going through and i can help. Only if people stop treating any sickness they don't understand as a terrorist and maybe read a book and learn something new so they can help if they encounter it, but am delusional , am doing my part for me and my friends sake and we are fine https://www.youtube.com/embed/hTDb0ebFh8E I have seen people get scared and look all judgmental when they see other people suffering from their sickness and just want to leave the area.
  • ArrowheadSW
    One of my best friends has had ADD/ADHD since childhood. Now that he is well into adulthood he is realizing what he needs to do to address it. Luckily he has a girlfriend who works on him with it almost on a daily basis. She helps him step by step to get things done that he would otherwise let go or put off.

    He's a smart guy. He finished his degree years ago and he wanted to be a high school teacher. He didn't make it through the teacher credential program though. I think it was too structured for him.
  • princesssnowflake
    I suspect that I have ADHD-HI, because I have the symptoms, but I have never been properly diagnosed or taken medication for it. My parents knew how to deal with it, so it never became a “problem” so to speak. I’ve always had many curricular classes, on top of extracurriculars, extra class work, just things to keep me occupied. I never skipped grades (when I could have) cause my mom didn’t believe that it would be good for my emotional maturity, and now that I’m older I’m grateful for it and I understand why she didn’t do that to me. My family is very understanding, my friends a little less so, but most people struggle to understand the phases I go through. They assume I’m all over the place, or rude and insensitive, instead of getting to know me, or ask me. I’m glad your boyfriend has someone as supportive and understanding as you by his side. Best of luck! 💫
  • Slim57
    Thanks for this it really does take patience to understand
  • jsincal
    I have ADHD. You nailed it.
  • jestergent
    ADHD is a symptom of having testosterone in the body.
  • lucas262
    Iv ways had adhd and its gotten me in trouble many times, as a student my teachers hated my guts as an employee mu boss hated my guts, my patents where frustrated saying i should've known how to do chores without being told and om like of you don't tell me how am supposed to know you want it done

    When in kindergarten my teacher talked with some doctors somehow and i wound up on adult meds that made me lose my mind seeing stars shoot across the room, chase cars in the road stuff like that

    I never had Perminant treatment for it and spent all my teens juat living with it im so used to just being me im only now realising how much an impact adhd can bad has had on my life but I cam learn about it and be a better me
  • Thank you for this!!! This is amazing!!! This is totally me :)
  • Massageman
    Thank you for the informative post. Sounds like my biography! Appreciate the insights since I'm on the spectrum.
  • Browneye57
    How 'bout just get a new guy that ISN'T fucked up in the head?
  • rp985
    I was diagnosed with ADHD as an adult and I support this message.
  • Not_Average
    As someone who's dealt with ADHD his entire life, I'm going to let you know that how one deals with it can vary from person to person. I don't think these are generic traits of most people who do have ADD/ADHD. 3 and 4 only seem to be the ones that can fit most people.

    Saying mean things has nothing to do with ADD/ADHD. Rather, it's the fact that he hasn't been able to socially adjust or handle his issues with emotional maturity. Also- introversion and extroversion have really nothing to do with it.


    A piece of advice I'd give to anyone who's younger that's struggling with ADD/ADHD is to accept your condition, move forward, and to forgive yourself for not achieving what you've wanted to in the past. Work on it. There are ways to make things happen and move forward. Don't be a victim to something out of your control. Work with it, and work around it when needed.
  • As someone who has ADD I can honestly say this is a terrible post, and you clearly lack an understanding of what ADD is. ADD is extremely overdiagnosed, especially in children. When you say that if a child day dreams a lot and doesn't do their homework, they likely have add, you sound incredibly ignorant. One reason ADD is so overdiagnosed is because regular child behaviour is often confused with ADD symptomology. You don't know what you're talking about, but you're acting like an expert. An infuriating read to say the least.
  • crazy8000
    Very simple.
    If that person have attitude problems and wrong kind of values.
    Don't bother to have them in your life.
  • jirwin7979
    i have acute adhd and iam 40 no girl so far wants me due to my hyperness and always in the mood for bedroom paly... so now iam alone
    • Aw, I'm sure you'll find someone that loves you someday.

    • jirwin7979

      i hope so hate being alone

  • msc545
    It's very difficult when they don't take their meds.
  • Paige90
    This was very good! Thank you for posting!
  • Joker_
    I have ADHD
  • Jamie05rhs
    You're an amazing person, @ragequeen.
  • Antto
    I have ADD
  • gymrat94
    It’s like looking kaleidoscope eyes
  • Oric5
    Good luck w that
  • Anonymous
    My ex had ADHD and I agree with a lot of your post! The biggest issue was #1, because I was on birth control, and was extremely hormonal and would get upset so easily at certain comments (when he wasn't trying to hurt my feelings). But where things went wrong was I would keep these things to myself instead of communicating.

    Wish him the best though!