People with ADHD may have difficulty listening, processing, and communicating information. Articulation disorders, auditory processing disorders and speech delays can coocur.
Other common issues include:
Blurting out tangential things
interrupting in conversations
Trouble focusing on the person talking
Shift attention between multiple speakers in a group
Difficulty organizing thoughts about to communicate what you want to say
Missing bits of information
Others acusing you of not listening
Others accusing you of not caring or being careless
Children’s communication issues
According to Mark Bertin, a developmental pediatric MD, Children with ADHD have an increase in articulation disorders.
fluency and vocal quality when speaking.
One study even was able to detect ADHD by measuring speech differences. Children with ADHD showed increased volume and variability in pitch when talking, along with patterns such as an increased number of pauses, repetitions or word fillers as they try to organize their thoughts. These look like stammers and often lead to others losing patience with them.
Have language delays
Get off topic, and
Have difficulty finding the right words.
Trouble in noisy situations
Get easily distracted where there are mulitple things
Cannot porcess large clumps of information communicated verbally
Which of these issues are issues for you?
Sometimes my clients are not even aware of how their ADHD is interacting with their communication issues. We begin to learn to p
The good news is you can come up with a plan to help yourself with these issues!
Here are some tips if you are an ADHD person wanting to communicate better
1. Begin observing and understanding your patterns. While at home and work it helps not to have conversations while you are distracted or stressed. Especially serious ones.
2. Notice when you cannot process information or feel overwhlemed. Practice saying ” I cannot do this right now because I can’t give you my full attention. Can we do this later? Or get back to me at ( insert time). Remember, you have the right to ask for conversations to happen in adhd optimal environments.
3. Couples can have a cue to remind each other if conversations begin to go off the rails to take a break
4. Practice pausing, and choosing what you say in conversation if you struggle with saying impulsive and reactive things. You can learn to do this even with ADHD if you are intentional about setting this goal.
5. Start to practice becoming aware of your bodysignals and language in conversation
6. It’s okay to make mistakes in conversation, what matters is that you return to them and repair.
7. Work on writing out or practicing a script before big conversations. Being clear and concise may be important for you.
8. ADHD people process information differently. If you hear information slower and often miss details they need. This is okay. You may need more time to respond in conversation than others. This is okay!
9.Tell people this is how you process information.
10. Ask for what you need. If you need to go to a quiet restaurant for example, ask for this.
Communicating To Someone with ADHD
The key to communicating with someone with ADHD is to be patient, clear, and concise. Try not to talk too fast or throw too much information at them at once. Breaking things down into smaller pieces can help them process the information more easily. For example, if you’re asking your partner to pick up milk on the way home from work, don’t also ask them to pick up bread, eggs, and cereal while you’re at it. Just stick to one task.
Here are four tips for communicating with mindfulness when you have ADHD:
1. Make sure you have the person’s full attention before you start speaking. This means no distractions like phones or TV. If possible, sit down face-to-face so you can make eye contact.
2. Keep your communication simple and to the point. Don’t use long, complicated sentences or words. Get straight to the point and explain what you need or want in as few words as possible.
3. Repeat back what you’ve heard to ensure you both are on the same page. This is especially important when communicating about important topics like finances or parenting duties.
4. Be patient and understanding. ADHD can make it hard for people to process information, so be patient while they try to understand what you’re saying. If they still don’t seem to get it, try explaining
5. When speaking to someone with ADHD. Annunciate clearly, and use gesture language such as counting bullet points on your fingers. Without judgment or condemnation, rephrase or repeat yourself when needed.
I hope these tips about communication and ADHD have been helpful for you.
Learn more about communication here: