Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy

2019 Edition
| Editors: Jay L. Lebow, Anthony L. Chambers, Douglas C. Breunlin

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Couple and Family Therapy

  • Gina PeraEmail author
  • Arthur L. Robin
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-49425-8_440


ADHD in couples; ADHD marital therapy; Adult ADHD couple therapy; Counseling couples with ADHD


Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a genetically based, neurobiological disorder that begins in childhood but persists into adulthood at a rate of at least 65–70% (Barkley 2014). It is estimated that only one in ten adults with ADHD in the USA is diagnosed. Many of these adults are currently misdiagnosed with depression, anxiety, or other conditions. Couples wherein one or both partners have ADHD often experience excessive conflict and negative interactions that threaten or even end their relationships. The ADHD partner often listens poorly, fails to finish tasks or fulfill commitments, manifests inappropriate emotional outbursts, and generally acts in the relationship more like a child than an adult.

Compounding the potential for disruption to the couple and the family unit: Adult ADHD itself is associated with sequelae including higher than average...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Adult ADHD-Focused Couple TherapySan Francisco Bay AreaUSA
  2. 2.Children’s Hospital of MichiganDetroitUSA
  3. 3.Dennis, Moye, and AssociatesBloomfield HillsUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Farrah Hughes
    • 1
  1. 1.Employee Assistance ProgramMcLeod HealthFlorenceUSA