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Thriving Through Summer: Tips for ADHD Couples to Navigate and Enjoy the Season

Updated: Jul 3


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As the summer sun rises higher in the sky, it brings with it a flurry of activities, obligations, and opportunities for adventure. For ADHD couples, navigating through the bustling summer season can be both exhilarating and overwhelming. With school holidays, family vacations, and the need for extra planning, it's crucial to prioritize self-care and access the resources that can support you on this journey.


Embracing Structure amidst the Chaos


One of the biggest challenges for ADHD couples during the summer months is maintaining structure and routine during the ever-changing schedule. While the spontaneity of summer can be enticing, it's essential to establish a basic framework to anchor yourselves during busy times.



  • Utilize Visual Tools: Invest in a shared calendar or planner where you can jot down important dates, appointments, and commitments. Visual aids can help both partners stay on track and reduce the risk of forgotten obligations. Furthermore, people with ADHD are much more visual. By placing a shared calendar in a high-traffic area of your home, it helps keep your ADHD spouse informed about upcoming events throughout the month. This strategy has helped me avoid being the constant reminder of what's happening next week, significantly reducing unnecessary friction between us and preventing the tension and resentment that often arose from my need to repeatedly remind my ADHD spouse.



  • Set Priorities: With many activities vying for your attention, it's crucial to identify your priorities as a couple. What are the non-negotiables for the month? What can wait? Having a clear sense of priorities can help you allocate your time and energy more effectively. I highly recommend setting no more than three priorities for the month and using them as stepping stones to achieve the bigger goals you both set, either as a couple or individually. For example, at the beginning of the year, my ADHD spouse wanted to invest some of his earnings but hadn't taken any steps toward it. Therefore, one of the three priorities for the month was for him to open an investment account. Because this priority was listed on the shared calendar, we accomplished it since he saw it regularly.




  • Create Daily Routines: While the summer may disrupt your usual routines, try to establish one or two new ones that cater to your needs during this season. Whether it's a morning walk together, a designated time for date night, or an evening wind-down ritual, having daily routines can provide a sense of stability and predictability.


Tip: It's perfectly fine to have multiple calendars around the house to track different items. We have one in our home gym where my ADHD spouse notes the date, exercise, and calories burned for each workout; one at the top of our stairs to track his progress on my top three priorities; and one in the kitchen for important activities in the upcoming week. Each calendar holds specific information that helps my ADHD spouse remember, plan, and take action.

Prioritizing Self-Care


With the chaos of summer, it's easy for self-care to take a backseat. However, prioritizing your well-being is essential for maintaining your mental and emotional health as a couple.


  • Schedule Downtime: Make it a point to carve out time for relaxation and rejuvenation amidst your busy schedule. Whether it's a quiet evening at home, a leisurely stroll in nature, or a day of pampering, prioritize activities that help you recharge. If possible, schedule a weekend getaway for yourself individually. Sometimes, being apart for a few days can provide valuable time to reflect on the positive aspects of the person and the relationship, fostering a sense of longing and appreciation that can enhance your feelings of love. This often helps me return home with extra motivation to try new solutions that further improve our relationship.


  • Practice Mindfulness: Incorporate mindfulness practices into your daily routine to stay grounded and present in the moment. Whether it's meditation, deep breathing exercises, or simply taking a few minutes to savor a cup of tea, mindfulness can help reduce stress and improve overall well-being. In addition to daily mindfulness practices, I typically attend a weekend yoga or meditation retreat once a year with friends. This allows me to engage in self-reflection and determine the steps I need to take upon returning home.


  • Communicate: Remember that communication is key in any relationship, especially during hectic times. Check in with each other regularly, express your needs and concerns, and work together to find solutions to any challenges that arise. For us, we continue to do our weekly check-in as it is now a weekly routine that has proved valuable. It helped both of us build trust while allowing us to address concerns together by agreeing to solutions that work for both of us.

Join a Support Group


While there are not as many support group options for ADHD couples or non-ADHD spouses during the summer, there are still 2 support groups that is worth your time to check it out:


ADDA Non-ADHD Partner Support Group

This is a weekly support group, held on Wednesdays at 9AM PT. It is well-attended virtually, typically attended by 20+ non-ADHD partners, led by ADHD Coach, Mike Fedel, who has ADHD. Read my review on this support group here.


ADDA ADHD Couples Support Group

This is a bi-weekly support group, held on every other Sunday at 5pm PT. Led by Kat Loutrel.


Conclusion


With the extended daylight hours of summer, there's ample time for ADHD couples to savor and thrive. By implementing the strategies outlined above—embracing structure, prioritizing self-care, and seeking support—couples can navigate the season's busyness with grace and enjoyment. By prioritizing the relationship and well-being, couples can make the most of this vibrant season, creating lasting memories and strengthening their bond along the way.


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