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Adult ADHD’s Love Journey and Life Story
A high proportion of adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) , according to the literature, have insecure attachment. Meanwhile, the type of attachment they have to their parents can impact their romantic attachment to their partners. Their ADHD symptoms and growth experiences also challenge the way they interact with their partners. Although the adult ADHDs’ marriage quality and divorce rates have drawn much international attention, there still lacks adequate research of this issue at the domestic level. Hence, this study aimed at two aspects: 1. To understand the attachment styles of adults with ADHD and their interactions with their partners in order to advance the future study on ADHD and romantic relationships. 2. To explore how adults with ADHD raise their self-awareness and co-exist with ADHD in order to explore ways of transforming their predicaments and cultivate positive power. This study applied narrative inquiry and conducted in-depth interviews to examine the worldview of adults with ADHD. Through their life stories, the researcher could analyze the interactive effects among symptoms, partner interactions, and attachment type. The research findings revealed that without parents’ "secure base" during infancy, the adults with ADHD would develop lower self-esteem and self-efficacy. However, low self-esteem is not necessarily an impediment to development. It actually depends on whether the individual could transform his or her low self-esteem into a driving force for change. Individuals who understand the influence ADHD has on them would have better chance to reestablish a positive self-concept. During their interactions with their partners, adults with ADHD are inclined to suffer from the intrusion of their symptoms, such as forgetfulness, impatience, and the gradual loss of emotional control. While the creativity and high mobility of adults with ADHD might bring joy to their partners, their defense mechanisms could exert influence on their romantic attachments. They might also have worries arising from their fear of not being loved or misconception of their existence being a mistake. There demands many efforts to guide them value themselves. The partners of adults ADHD have power to change their attachment behaviors. The more adults with ADHD feel being accepted with their partners understanding, patience and tolerance, the more positive outcomes could be expected. Partner interaction is often an important component of developing a successful strategy to help adults with ADHD. It is quite helpful for them to receive immediate feedback or support from their partners when they show improvements. Recommendations for adults with ADHD and their partners, and for future research were proposed in this study in the hope that they will benefit future research and their love journey.
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