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Review of ADDA's Non-ADHD Partner Support Group: Insights and Recommendations

Updated: Jun 24

NOTE: This support group is being transitioned to a new platform outside of ADDA as of July 17th, 2024. If you are interested in joining, do not sign up for the ADDA membership. Please contact Mike Fedel directly by sending him an email: here


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Navigating a relationship where one partner has ADHD can present unique challenges. For non-ADHD partners, understanding and supporting their partner while managing their own emotions and needs is crucial. ADDA, one of the largest ADHD non-profit organizations, offers a non-ADHD partner support group to provide emotional and peer support. Currently, this group is led by Mike Fedel, an ADHD coach who understands these challenges firsthand. After attending these sessions for the past few months, I'd like to share my thoughts on this support group.


Who is Mike Fedel?


Mike Fedel is an ADHD coach with a personal understanding of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. He was diagnosed with ADHD himself in 2013, after years of navigating life without knowing about ADHD. Mike brings both professional expertise and personal insight to his role as facilitator of the ADDA non-ADHD support group.


What Do I Think of the Support Group?


I am impressed by the size and engagement of this support group—it's the largest non-ADHD support group I have seen and attended. Mike's approach to helping non-ADHD partners understand ADHD behaviors is commendable. He remains composed and patiently explains these behaviors to the best of his knowledge, helping participants connect the dots and gain a deeper understanding of their partner's actions. This is really not an easy feat as some of the discussion could potentially be triggers for Mike himself.


Three Reasons Why I Recommend This Group:


1. Affordability and Accessibility: 


This support group is incredibly accessible and affordable, free if you have a ADDA membership (BTW, the membership only costs $9 a month—equivalent to 2 Grande latte at Starbucks). The group session is held weekly with consistently high attendance (30+ people per session), fostering a strong sense of community among non-ADHD partners who share similar challenges.


2. Insight into ADHD Behaviors: 


Mike Fedel's personal experience with ADHD enriches the group sessions. He goes beyond just discussing behaviors; he explores the underlying reasons behind them. This deeper understanding helps non-ADHD partners accept and navigate their partner's behaviors more effectively, paving the way towards finding solutions together.


For example, as we were talking about how ADHD spouses often mask themselves in front of others, Mike explained how the mask sometimes comes off with their non-ADHD spouse because they let their guard down and trust their partner. While the unmasking might mean that the non-ADHD spouse sees a not-so-pleasant side of their ADHD spouse, it is also a sign of the ADHD spouse's trust. Upon some internal reflection, I realized how important it is for me not to react negatively when the unmasking happens. Being cognizant of this behavior allowed me to become more supportive of my spouse, which helped him recover from negative thoughts faster.


3. Interactive and Supportive Environment: 


The group sessions are not just informative but also interactive. While not everyone is able to speak during the session, everyone can participate in the chat, fostering a collaborative atmosphere where participants can share insights and support one another. Additionally, the multiple options to connect offline through dedicated private Facebook group, ADDA social platform in their website or directly connecting with other members via phone, text or email makes getting access to support much more accessible.


Conclusion:

ADDA's non-ADHD support group led by Mike Fedel offers a valuable resource for non-ADHD partners navigating relationships with individuals with ADHD. Mike's blend of personal experience and professional expertise creates a supportive environment where members can gain insights, connect with others facing similar challenges, and find effective strategies for enhancing their relationships. Whether you're seeking understanding, community, or practical advice, this support group provides a compassionate space to navigate the complexities of ADHD relationships with confidence.


If you have attended one of Mike's support groups, let us know your thoughts by commenting below.


NOTE: This support group is being transitioned to a new platform outside of ADDA as of July 17th, 2024. If you are interested in joining, do not sign up for the ADDA membership. Please contact Mike Fedel directly by sending him an email: here 


Support Group Details:

Cost: Free if you are a ADDA member (ADDA's membership costs is only $9USD/month)

Total sessions: 1 session a week, Wed at 9AM PT

Medium: Zoom

Health Insurance reimbursement: Not Applicable

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars


Check out Mike Fedel's website: Here


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