REVIEW by Rick Green
In the movie The Matrix, there’s a crucial scene, from which everything follows. Including the two sequels. The hero, Neo, is offered a life altering choice between knowing the truth of living in the bliss of ignorance. If he takes the Blue Pill he will live comfortably, completely unaware his life is a complete fabrication, being run by an evil, invisible force... (Hmm, sounds familiar.) Or he can take the Red Pill and learn the harsh truth, revealing how his behavior is being manipulated and undermined in ways beyond his imagination. The truth will see you free.
Melissa Orlov’s book The ADHD Effect of Marriage is a bit like a Red Pill for your relationships.
Unlike The Matrix taking this Red Pill won’t lead you into a life of warring, fighting and battling mysterious, shape shifting agents of destruction. Quite the opposite.
You’ll understand what is sabotaging your relationships. And you’ll have some tools to transform them.
Some of the challenges seem obvious. But some ‘ADHD strengths’ can create misunderstandings and pain. For example, when we hyper-focus, we can be dynamos. Tireless. Intense. Superfocussing. We LOVE what we like, and HATE what we dislike. Black and white.
So “I want you,” becomes, “I WANT YOU!!!” The result is an exciting, intense courtship which is easily mistaken for profound passion.
And as for sustaining that intensity? Well, sure, no couple does, but with ADHD/ADD there can be a sudden staggering drop, as the ADDer moves onto the next shiny, new challenge. From him “madly in love” to “checked out” in short order. If the partner doesn't understand ADHD they’ll assume their spouse has gone from incredibly thoughtful to stunningly thoughtless because of something they said or did, or did not say or do, and that, “It’s over.”
Of course the tendency to hyper focus, jump in over her head, totally absorbed in something and then suddenly move on to something else doesn't just apply to relationships. As I well know. But even I was surprised at how the familiar challenges of ADHD show up in relationships
Any one of the 12 patterns that Melissa identifies will undermine the best marriage. Taken together they’ll demolish any relationship. Unless you get clear about what's going on.
As someone with ADHD, I found the 12 patterns made complete sense. Yep, yep, yep… Been there, done that. For my wife they were a revelation. Some of them were painfully familiar. We could find examples of how they were showing up and limiting us, locking us into roles we neither sought or enjoyed. Lousy patterns. Unconscious patterns.
After laying out the challenges Melissa takes you through 6 steps to rebuilding your relationship. Take this on, he even some of these practices, Angela only rebuild your relationship but take it to a level it's never been before. Yes, even when courting.
If you're the partner of someone with ADHD, even if it's someone who's resisting the diagnosis and second denial, this book will give you relief, hope and practical tools to transform your relationship. It has to start somewhere. It can start with you.