Having a close personal relationship with an individual with ADD or ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit/Hyper-activity Disorder) can be a fairly heavy load for someone to carry. Individuals who have been diagnosed with this disorder are overly emotional, seem disorganized and irresponsible, and can take loved ones on emotional roller-coaster rides throughout the day. What should be kept in mind is the fact that these individuals are highly intelligent, creative, and compassionate people who have some of the most creative minds in the world; these traits are likely some of the very things which sparked such an intense love for the person to begin with. The following five points should be kept in mind by all who interact on any level with someone suffering from ADD as they will assist you in understanding the mind and heart of someone with Attention Deficit Disorder.
1. They are passionate about everything.
You may see this passion as “over-emotion”. The fact is people with ADD feel all of their emotions on an amplified level. Because of the intensity of their feelings they often seem to over-react to extremes but in all reality they are simply dealing with the emotions as they feel them. Because of this you can also expect these individuals to suffer from anxiety problems as well.
2. They remember everything and nothing.
Your loved one will be able to relate to you everything from song lyrics and conversations verbatim but they will struggle to grab the mail when they come in the front door. Their minds are like sponges and they will take in every bit of information around them at all times. It is this very characteristic which works against them in remembering the small things. Once their need to concentrate has been stimulated by anything it is nearly impossible to get that attention back to where it should be.
3. Once something has their attention they cannot deviate from the object or circumstance of focus.
Once the person with ADHD is able to set their focus it is a struggle to pull them back into the real world. Whether it is work or play the problem is in setting the focus to begin with. Once it is set you have an entirely new issue: Getting it back.
4. They often speak out of turn or say things they regret.
This comes back to the issue of being incapable of regulating their emotions and their reactions to them; it is a direct result of a heightened emotional sense. Keep in mind that this person likely caught what they said as soon as they said it and feels particularly terrible about it, possibly even worse than you felt to begin with.
5. They are often uncomfortable in their own skin.
People with Attention Deficit Disorders of any kind are aware, particularly as adults that they think and feel on a much more intense basis. They have compensated and overcompensated over time just to get through their everyday lives. Being around strangers or those they are not too close too often will incite feelings of inferiority due to this personal knowledge, and you will often see these individuals withdraw from others very creatively.
ADD or ADHD will try your patience and your love. Keep the above facts in mind when interacting with your loved one. Read up on this disorder and gain as much information as you can regard its symptoms and how to deal with them in a gentle, caring fashion that will strengthen the relationship rather than harm it.