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Book Review: The Effects of ADHD Marriage by Melissa Orlov

Updated: Apr 9

Last month, I recommend the Melissa' Orlov's Couples seminar on my ADHD Couples Gift Ideas list. The seminar is based on her book, The Effect on ADHD Marriage, which is widely known as the "ADHD Marriage Bible." Today, I share my insights on this book and why you it should become one of your go-to resources and read this ahead of attending the her seminar.

Who is Melissa Orlov?

Melissa Orlov, a recognized author and expert in adult ADHD, focuses on relationships and marriages. Her books, including "The ADHD Effect on Marriage" and "The Couple's Guide to Thriving with ADHD," offer valuable insights, strategies, and support for couples grappling with ADHD-related challenges.

What do I think of this book?

When I initially read this book a few years ago, I found the tone of the book is exactly what I was looking for, direct and to the point. During the 1st half of the book, she presented ADHD marriage patterns along with other ADHD couples stories that helped me understand that we are struggling the same challenges like other ADHD couple. In the 2nd half of the book, she offers steps in her book to help ADHD couples, especially the non-ADHD spouses, to rebuilding their relationships.

By the time I finish reading the book, I finally understand that this is a joint problem and I need to invest time to make the marriage work.

I highly recommend this book, especially for the non-ADHD spouse who have been in the marriage for some time and needed a no non-sense book to help them understand what is happening in the marriage and a path to rebuilding.

3 Reasons Why I recommend this book

Reason No. 1: Written from an non-ADHD Spouse's Point of View

Melissa's perspective as a non-ADHD spouse adds authenticity and relatability. Her examples, rooted in extensive therapy work with ADHD couples and her own experience, resonate with readers, especially for non-ADHD spouse like me, connect the dots quickly. The book addresses challenges head-on, providing relatable examples and practical tips without sugar-coating. Melissa skillfully guides non-ADHD spouses through the complexities of ADHD in marriage.

Reason 2: The 6 Steps to Rebuilding ADHD Relationship

One of the standout features of the book is Melissa's detailed exploration of the six steps involved in rebuilding relationships affected by ADHD. These steps, cultivating empathy, addressing obstacle emotions, getting treatment for you both, improving communications, setting boundaries and reigniting romance are essential for rebuilding the relationship and providing a structured and actionable approach for couples.

At each step, Melissa helps the readers understand the challenges and issues from both sides. She then provide exercises in each steps to help the couples to work through the issues and create break throughs that allow couples to mend and rebuild the relationships.

Reason 3: Practical worksheet and tools to help :

Throughout the book, Melissa equips readers with practical tools and exercises to help couples, especially the non-ADHD spouse, to uncover and address underlying feelings.

One notable exercise (see below) involves identifying the root causes of emotions, emphasizing problem-solving at its core. This approach encourages couples to tackle the real issues, enhancing communication and understanding.


The ADHD Effect on Marriage by Melissa Orlov is a must-read for non-ADHD spouses seeking understanding, guidance and support. Melissa Orlov's compassionate and knowledgeable approach coupled with practice advice, make this book an indispensable resource for non-ADHD spouses on the journey to rebuilding and strengthening their relationships.

Join the Live Seminar

For those wanting to delve deeper into Orlov's teachings, consider joining her upcoming seminar from Feb 13 to April 9, 2024. The 9-session teleseminar via Zoom promises to elevate your understanding of the content. Read my seminar review here.

Share Your Thoughts

Have you read this book? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Share your feedback in the comment section below. What do you think?

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