If you’re living with ADD/ADHD, you might experience the common feeling of being misunderstood or misinterpreted. It can be particularly difficult for friends and family to know how to support you and they may have no clue what to say to help you through a difficult time. With that in mind, I’ve put together a round-up of things people with ADD/ADHD wish others would say. Share this post with a friend or loved one to help them understand how best to support you on your journey with ADD/ADHD.
“ADD/ADHD Doesn’t Change Our Relationship”
People with ADD or ADHD often worry about how their condition will affect their relationships. Some people may even retreat or withdraw from social situations out of fear that their ADD will negatively impact the experience. Letting a person with ADD know that their condition won’t change, damage, or otherwise negatively influence a relationship will help them feel supported and accepted for who they are.
“I Love Your Creativity/Sensitivity/Enthusiasm”
ADD and ADHD come with positive personality traits of their own. Focusing on those positive gifts in someone’s personality lets them know that you appreciate their unique qualities and recognize the good things that ADD can bring to a relationship. This shows that you don’t see your friend’s ADD as a weakness, but as a strength.
“I’d Like To Understand What You’re Going Through”
When learning that a friend or loved one has ADD, many people make the understandable mistake of saying something like “I know what you’re going through.” Many people feel they understand what it’s like to live with ADD or ADHD since it’s so publicized in the media, or perhaps they have a distant acquaintance with the condition. The truth is, unless you are living with ADD yourself, you don’t really know what it’s like. Acknowledging that you are not an expert in the subject, but that you’d like to learn demonstrates openness and support without minimizing the person’s experience or presuming to already know their individual story.
Supporting someone with ADD or ADHD can be a challenge for those who have never experienced the symptoms themselves. Even if they don’t always say the right thing, remember that your loved ones do have your best interests at heart. Share this blog post with them and begin a productive and healthy conversation to continue building your ADD support system.