ADHD doesn’t create unique challenges for couples—it just exacerbates the universal struggles that everyone faces in their relationship and sex life. All couples need to resolve differences in priorities, preferences, and ways of being in order to create a satisfying life together. When ADHD is undiagnosed or not well managed, it can create seemingly insurmountable disagreements where both partners feel right, but neither is happy and the therapist feels just as powerless to change it.
Adults with ADHD are over-represented in therapy offices, especially couples/sex therapy, because of the many ways that it can impact relationship functioning, yet there is little available for clinicians on how to work most effectively with this interesting population. ADHD is a neurologically-based information processing disorder, but it has significant psychological effects on how a person sees themselves, addresses challenges, and interacts with others. This then impacts how that adult with ADHD behaves in intimate relationships—which then impacts how their romantic partner behaves, as well, making certain dynamics more likely. Couples who have additional struggles by day can benefit all the more from the benefits of a good connection at night. As much as untreated ADHD can make the relationship and sex life much less satisfying for both partners, it tends to respond well to the right treatments.
This seminar will be based on original research conducted by Dr. Tuckman on how ADHD can impact a couple’s relationship and sexual satisfaction. We will begin with a conceptual model of ADHD that is much more useful in work with clients, as well as how medication can improve functioning. We will then cover the many ways that ADHD impacts an individual and couple. We will discuss how ADHD can imbalance a relationship and how to help partners create a relationship that feels more fair and respectful for both. We will also discuss how ADHD can impact an individual’s sexuality and a couple’s sex life, including how to help couples navigate desire discrepancy and questions about masturbation and porn.
Most of our time will be spent on practical strategies that clinicians can use with individuals and couples. This will be an engaging presentation that offers nuts and bolts strategies backed by a deep understanding of relationship dynamics, sexual functioning, and ADHD neurology. The material covered will also benefit your work with all of your clients by giving you a framework to negotiate all differences between partners.
After this seminar, attendees will be able to:
- Apply a more useful model of ADHD to help clients better understand and manage it.
- Discuss how to facilitate a conversation with clients about what expect of medication for ADHD.
- Explain the many ways that ADHD can impact both partners in a couple and the common dynamics that ensue.
- Describe a deeper understanding of ADHD, relationship dynamics, and sexuality to work more effectively with these clients to improve both their relationship and sex life.
Ari Tuckman, PsyD, CST is a psychologist, certified sex therapist, and ADHD expert. He has given more than 600 presentations, across America and in nine other countries. He is the author of four books on adult ADHD, including his most recent book, ADHD After Dark: Better Sex Life, Better Relationship which is the first to explore how ADHD impacts a couple’s sex life and relationship—and how to improve both. He has been widely quoted in national media such as The New York Times and Men’s Health and appeared on countless podcasts.