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Publisher's Summary

An invaluable resource for couples in which one of the partners suffers from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), this authoritative book guides troubled marriages toward an understanding of and appreciation for the struggles and triumphs of a relationship affected by it and to look at the disorder in a more positive and less disruptive way. Going beyond traditional marriage counseling, this discussion offers advice from the author's personal experience and years of research and identifies patterns of behavior that can hurt marriages - such as nagging, intimacy problems, sudden anger, and memory issues - through the use of vignettes and descriptions of actual couples and their ADHD struggles and solutions. This resource encourages both spouses to become active partners in improving their relationship and healing the fissures that ADHD can cause.

©2010 Melissa Orlov (P)2017 Tantor

What listeners say about The ADHD Effect on Marriage

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Partner of a ADHD Person

Up until now I never understood the dynamics of an ADHD relationship or my role in the relationship problems we faced. It was all so very confusing and VERY sad. I can’t express how much I wish I had heard this book four years ago.... I absolutely recommend this work to anyone who is looking for a light in the darkness or anyone who wants renewed hope.

7 people found this helpful

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Great book. Poor narrator choice

This book is filled with great ideas for people with ADD and their partners to improve their relationships. However, for anyone with ADD, listening to the narrator’s soft, monotone voice makes it terribly difficult to listen to without zoning out or becoming distracted. I probably missed half the book due to this, but did get a lot of great ideas on how to improve my marriage.

4 people found this helpful

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opened my husbands eyes to the destruction of add

an eye opening read for both the ADHD spouse and the non ADHD spouse. so many things make sense now about why my husband does the things the way he does. I find myself less frustrated with him

4 people found this helpful

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  • Jay
  • 2020-10-25

Life changing!

Highly recommended! I wish I knew about this book sooner! It could be the book to save your marriage. So many great nuggets.

2 people found this helpful

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Great book, terrible narration

What a great book.

The narrator on the other hand, oh my goodness... I was so bored, and having ADHD myself I had to chain my earphones to my head.

2 people found this helpful

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Husband has ADHD

This book is perfect for the spouse who might have an idea that their significant other might have ADHD. I listened to the whole book alone trying to understand what could be happening for my husband. So much of this book was familiar. It helped me to get up the courage to speak to him about my thoughts and it's opened my eyes to how the symptoms are affecting our marriage and me. We're not listening to the book together and he sees a lot of himself in the book. I like how the book talks about strategies for the ADHD spouse and the non-ADHD spouse. I can't say enough about this book. A complete marriage saver and eye opener. Thank you!

1 person found this helpful

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Highly recommended & must reading for ADHD couples

An excellent resource filled with relevant examples and professional advice for understanding how ADHD affects individuals and relationships! Melissa Orlov is personable, experienced, and thoughtful both in her writing and counseling sessions ;-)

1 person found this helpful

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not what i was looking for

this book was not quite what I was looking for. I do disagree with different points within the book which is not terrible but there were too many things that I was disagreeing with. the reading is rather dry but that didn't bother me too much more was the content. I personally am not in favor of medication to treat ADHD. Others do find it to be the way to go but it's not what I'm looking for. So I think I will be looking for different material that will help me understand the relational effects of ADHD and how to work with ADHD.

1 person found this helpful

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  • J.D
  • 2022-04-18

MUST READ!!

My husband made his ADD discovery on the Ologies Podcast, I listened thinking it sounds similar, when i heard this book as a recommended read. I jumped in and WOW!!!!!
Gamechanger! I suggested to my partner who was already open to learning more and he couldn't believe what he was hearing. It was a great way to open up the communication to the effects on our relationship. The book described so much of what I was feeling but was challenged in articulating without eliciting a negative reaction. Knowing he loved me, but so many contradictions it was beyond confusing. We are now both understanding each other and loving each other more. Grateful for the audible version, helped expedite the process.

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Rough in parts but contains absolute GOLD

It felt like the first half of this book contained an absolutely over-the-top amount of negative comments, comparisons, statistics thrown at the reader. I suspect this is because some ADHD partners haven't yet accepted that this is a serious issue and may need to hear it, but for those of us who already understand this and are simply looking for help to improve things, it feels downright toxic to stew in the negativity of it all; almost feels like two separate books would be better for these two different scenarios.

Orlov makes a point of writing about how ADHD should not necessarily be seen as a disability, to not treat ADHD partners as broken, and stresses how effective medication can be and that it should be embraced, but the way she writes about it, it leaves the distinct impression that she regards ADHD as a disability first, and that the use of medication is something to be ashamed of. For example, she mentions that her daughter takes medication for ADHD, but is quick to point out that she only needs a little bit.

This negativity did make the first half of the book grating to go through, but I can also see likely reasons for her focus on the negative and she is fairly open about the reasons why she may have some deep negative feelings about ADHD that are perfectly understandable.

Despite the above, I'm leaving a 5-star review because the latter half of the book is full of excellent observations, strategies for success, and so I would encourage anyone in a relationship with an ADHD partner or anyone with ADHD to give it a read; it is well-worth your time, especially if you are new to learning about ADHD as I am.

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  • Brent
  • 2020-02-16

“Just Give Up Now” is the feeling you get.

I’ll break it into good and bad points
Good
- Will help validate and clarify relationship struggles. It will help clarify that you’re not crazy as the none ADHD spouse
- Written from the non ADHD spouse perspective.

Bad
- The majority of the book is about how miserable the relationship is for everyone
- ADHD seems to be portrayed as a disease. Very few comments on its good qualities.
- There is little focus on navigating the challenges. Relationships tools are briefly covered. Then it is followed by how miserable people are.
- Positivity is brief. You’ll hear one statement about how things will be great. Then it is followed by how miserable everyone is.

The book has good intentions, but seems to reflect the author’s difficulties faced as the non ADHD spouse. It helped identify the ADD challenges earlier in my life. However, listening to the book has left me depressed and feeling hopeless. I got about four hours into the book before I finally had to stop. It wasn’t getting better.

The book has left the feeling that people with ADHD should avoid relationships all together and spend life alone. (Based on the first 4 hours of the same message)

The quick version of the book’s recommendations are. Find an ADHD marriage counselor and manage the ADHD.

The book is good for non ADHD partners seeking validation for their struggles. It will helps to reassure that they aren’t crazy.

38 people found this helpful

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  • Finck Thincks
  • 2019-11-13

Worth the read for marriages with an ADHD spouse

I am the ADHD (male) spouse. This book is directed more at the non-ADHD spouse, and contains great advice. So I highly recommend it for the non-ADHD spouse. My non-ADHD spousev had found it to be very helpful, and, as she progresses through each section, putting recommendations into action already facilitating improvements in our marital relationship.

However, if you're the one with ADD/ADHD, the way she talks about some things can be more difficult or even feel offensive at times. But this is because she's speaking to the non-ADHD spouse, and acknowledging their emotional experiences of living with you. And that can be hard to hear and accept, without feeling very threatened or judged. The author's time is clearly such that this is not her intent. The intent is to validate the non-ADHD spouse's experience. and that can be very hard to hear and accept. Taken in this light, the book can be helpful for both sides in gaining empathy towards the other's experience. And in that light can potentially facilitate better outcomes. Nonetheless, this can also trigger feelings of judgement, defensiveness, guilt/shame/blame, etc. for the ADHD spouse. so be prepared for that. Both of you will have to do your best to put the best construction in your respective approved in these situations.

I got through it fine. But I've also done a decent amount of work on myself in this area before listening to the book. Even with that, the general tone throughout the book was still very difficult at times.

So... non-ADHD spouses, please take all this into consideration before recommending to your spouse that they read it too. I'm not saying don't recommend it. Simply do your best to be aware of your spouse's sensitivities, while they are reading the book, if you choose to recommend it. For some of you, it may not produce the desired effect.

30 people found this helpful

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  • Dennis
  • 2017-09-01

must buy if you have adult adhd

this is eye opening. If you are an adult with ADHD or a spouse of an adult with ADHD. You must take the time to listen to this. It hits every aspect of a relationship and how ADHD has effected it.

15 people found this helpful

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  • Wyomingrl
  • 2020-02-07

Wow! You make it sound like ADHD people are awful!!

I have ADHD and I did not relate to this book at all. It had more negative comments than positive comments about ADHD. Just because I have ADHD doesn’t mean that I am incompetent and can’t do daily tasks, chores, etc.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Philip Ian Harrison
  • 2017-07-07

ADHD Relationship Decoder

I purchased this book after a breakup of a 9 year relationship. I had also had a divorce many years ago. This book blew my mind.

Chapter after chapter, I found most references in this book applied to my long term relationships. So strongly in fact I was brought to tears over and over, sobbing. I was unaware my ADHD played such a huge negative role in my relationships. I was floored.

If you have ADHD or have a partner with ADHD you unequivocally NEED to listen to this book. It is an eye opener and hopefully it will set you and your partner on a road to recovery.

I love you Konstantza and hope you will have me back so we can have a new relationship with all of the joys we are supposed to have.

Love always and forever,

Philip

30 people found this helpful

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  • JohnnyFi
  • 2017-09-04

ADHD spouse here, I finally feel like I have a plan to salvage the little bit I have left in my marriage!

I am so grateful this book is Finally on audiobook. I have a hard copy and have had it for several years now. I've been married for nearly 11 years. The beginning of the book almost exactly described the downfall my marriage has been going through. The fact that Melissa so perfectly describes what I've been through and does so with logic and compassion. She does a wonderful job explaining in a way that keeps me from feeling inept as a spouse.

The concepts are simple and a great summary recap is at the back of the book. Thank you Melissa, I haven't felt this much hope and confidence that I can build a foundation within the ashes of my currently failing marriage.

If you are reading my review and either one or. Out of you have adhd in your marriage. This is a really solid plan that sounds like it's going to work!

Good luck, it's hard but I know it will be worth it to get my relationship and my family in a good place. :)

16 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2020-01-28

Very basic

While narrated extremely well, the content is quite basic and it felt like the majority of the book was quotes from the author’s website’s forums plus personal experience from the author. There is very little tangible help and what is there could be dealt with in 20 pages or less. Save your credit!

7 people found this helpful

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  • michael westergren
  • 2020-07-28

I really tried to finish this

She brings up a lot of good points on how miserable normal people are married to ADD people. it almost seems like she encourages people with ADHD not to ever get married. However I have ADHD and I am more productive than the average human being I found this book to be truly insulting. I made it about 3/4 of the way through and just couldn’t handle it anymore constantly referring to people with ADHD as children maybe I’m a rare breed but I manage a IT company and I am the breadwinner I cook I clean I do everything for my family so once again I find this book extremely Negative.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Brian Fisk
  • 2019-03-03

Changed my life - I now have awareness

I turned to this book after my wife of 9 years had multiple affairs over the last year. When I started listening to the book, it was a mirror of my marriage. I had thought I was ADHD most of my life but never addressed it. I asked my dr about adderrall 3 years ago which he wrote a script and although it helped for some time, well as I said I recently found out about affairs. When I realized that ADHD symptoms could be the cause for the space between us (multiple examples) I seemed out help from an adhd specialist. I was formerly diagnose with ADHD and a serious case of it. For the last two months I have been working on myself and I have a new awareness that my first path of thinking is my ADHD and through the tools in this book and journaling my thoughts, I now now how to get to my second path of thinking. If you think you have ADHD or your partner does, read this book! I wish I could get my wife to read it but I haven’t been able to get her to. Although were working on our marriage through counseling, this book was was unlocked my mind and provided me with awareness. I can never go back to my old way of not being aware. This book may have changed my awareness forever... now to make change. Thank you.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-08-26

Not for Me

Unfortunately the author looks at ADHD solely through a deficit lens, rather than just viewing it as a difference. I don't think the answer to my non-ADHD partner making peace with my ADHD self is to medicate and mold my behavior until I seem neurotypical. ND people already spend our lives bending to NT ways of being, I don't need that in my marriage.

3 people found this helpful