3 Tips for Dating Someone With ADHD

dating someone with adhd

Did you know that roughly 4.2% of the adult population in the United States has ADHD? Despite the prevalence of the condition, there are still a lot of misconceptions surrounding this disability.

Some people think that the condition is just an excuse for medication. Or, they believe that all individuals with ADHD are hyper, lazy, or a child. These myths can make dating someone with ADHD challenging.

Because, don’t get us wrong, some facts come with the condition that makes relationships difficult. But, the reality is that these challenges can be overcome through awareness. That’s why in this article, we’ll go over some advice for dating people with ADHD. Let’s get started!

Why Can Dating Someone With ADHD Be Difficult?

First, let’s go over some of the reasons why ADHD can make dating difficult. For starters, ADHD is usually accompanied by other types of mental disabilities. For example, did you know that three out of ten people with ADHD also have generalized anxiety?

It’s also not uncommon to also have depression, OCD, and social anxiety. All of these things can make social interactions hard for one reason or another. Many of the symptoms of ADHD are also not conducive to dating. These include things like:

  • Hyper-focusing on certain topics
  • Being blind to time
  • Difficulty dealing with small talk
  • The tendency to get bored during a conversation
  • Forgetting important details
  • Impulsiveness
  • Trouble paying attention
  • Might Interrupt people in the middle of conversations

As you can see, a lot of these symptoms could make it seem like the individual doesn’t care, or isn’t interested. But, the reality is that this is just the way that they are. The good news is that these challenges are by no means insurmountable.

Is It Possible to Make the Relationship Work?

Of course! But, like any other relationship, it will take openness, patience, communication, and love. Most importantly, these qualities need to come from both parties.

It doesn’t matter if someone has ADHD, or they don’t, if they’re in denial of the condition, then it’s likely the relationship will never work. That’s because relationships revolve around personal accountability.

And, without awareness, then it’s impossible to take responsibility for one’s actions, words, efforts, and the consequences of all of these things. Let’s move on to some tips that can encourage awareness on both sides of the relationship.

Tip #1: Encourage Them to Consider Treatment

Ideally, the person you’re dating has received evaluation and treatment for their condition. Sadly, this isn’t always the case. The reality is that there are a lot of adults out there with a lot of the symptoms of ADHD, but no official diagnosis.

Why is this? Well, as we mentioned at the start of the article, there are a lot of stigmas surrounding the condition. It could be possible that the individual doesn’t want to be labeled. Or, maybe are scared to try psychiatry. Or, they don’t want to take medication.

Regardless of the reason, it’s important to face these tough conversations. We recommend asking them to sit down and talk when they’re in a focused mood. Encourage them to have a conversation with a medical professional.

And, if they’re scared of treatment, remind them that it doesn’t always involve medication. While stimulants like Adderall are effective, they’re far from the only treatment method. Other treatment methods include:

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Skills training
  • Psychoeducation

All of these treatments are designed to provide you and your partner with more understanding of the condition. They also give you strategies for working around the challenges that the symptoms can present.

And, if someone is resistant to treatment, then remind them that they can stop at any time. This will allow them to feel in control.

Tip #2: Alter Your Communication Style When They’re Feeling Distracted

The symptoms of ADHD can flare up throughout the day. That means that at certain points when the individual is feeling over or under-stimulated, they might have difficulty paying attention to what you’re saying.

As the relationship progresses you will get better at noticing when attention shifts come and go. Try and alter your communication style to fit them. For example, if you have something important that you want to talk about, but your partner is distracted, then write it down.

Wait until they’re in a better state to communicate. This can take some practice. But, as long as you stick with it, then you’re sure to notice an improvement.

Tip #3: Be a Support System When They’re Feeling Overwhelmed

As we mentioned earlier, people with ADHD are also more likely to have depression, OCD, and social anxiety. If you struggle with any of these conditions, then you know that they can make life feel overwhelming.

So, be a support system for your partner. If they have social anxiety, then help them make friends by introducing them to other people. These social systems help them read social cues that they might be missing.

For example, if they keep interrupting people, then use a subtle visual cue to help bring attention. Or, if they have depression, then hold space for them. Let them talk about their thoughts and feelings.

Doing so not only helps the person relieve some of the symptoms that come with these conditions, but it also shows you care about them by understanding their condition.

Want to Meet Other People With ADHD? Join Special Bridge

Having ADHD, or any physical/mental disability can often feel isolating. Whether you’re looking for friends or someone to date, it can be helpful to look for people with similar experiences as you. That’s why we made Special Bridge.

It’s an app that helps adults with physical or mental disabilities find matches with similar interests. Everything, from our matching system, to our forums, is geared toward helping people with disabilities connect.

So, if you’re ready to start meeting people like you, then register today!

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