Seeking Adult ADHD and/or partner group support—in the easiest way possible? Desperate to find people who “get it”? Where you don’t have to explain every last detail and risk being mis-judged?
You’ve come to the right place! I began in 1999 facilitating such groups—and know the ropes very well by now.
I started organizing face-to-face meetings in Palo Alto—one for adults with ADHD and one for the “partners of.” From humble beginnings, we’ve branched out with new technologies and options. Something for everyone.
Leading these groups for almost 20 years has been my immense privilege and pleasure. Seeing (and reading about) strangers of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds coming together for mutual support, strategy-sharing and much laughter restores one’s faith in humanity.
Come join us. It’s friendly and informal.
Here Are Your Options:
- Adults with ADHD Free monthly meeting (for SF Bay Area Locals Only). Sign up to be notified here.
- Partners of Adults with ADHD — an international E-mail/web-based group. (We also welcome parents and siblings of adults with ADHD.) A modest monthly fee. Members have the option of joining in a monthly Zoom call with their peers. Apply here
- Everyone: “Virtual” Adult ADHD and Relationships Group Discussion — 16 posts right here on the ADHD Roller Coaster. Based on chapters in Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? Essays written by two women in dual-ADHD marriages. The discussion comes in the comments—read and leave a comment any time. Be as long-winded as you like! No one is getting impatient. The group is open 24-7!
- Everyone (including professionals!): Solving Your Adult ADHD Puzzle Course Participant Group — Enrolling in Course 1 or 2 gives you access to purchase 6 group Q&A Zoom calls (I facilitate)
You’ll find more details about each resource below.
Adult ADHD Group — SF Bay Area Locals Only
COVID has restricted the longtime Palo Alto gatherings at The Friend’s Meeting House. In their place, I’ve offered a free monthly group via Zoom.
Our meetings follow no format. Think of it as a wide-ranging and supportive conversation among new and familiar friends. You might be surprised, but it works!
Please note: This is solely for residents local to the San Francisco Bay Area.
Join the mailing list (rarely more than 2 mails monthly) here.
The “Partners Of” Group: ADHD Partner
ADHD Partner: This is hosted on groups.io platform. It is not a chat room or a discussion board. Rather, it is e-mail based (you can also read at the website).
How does it work? Simple. Send an e-mail and go about your business. Come back and read the responses. It conforms to your schedule;
Choose to receive individual e-mails or the daily and weekly digests—or read at the site. Search the archives for key topics.
To protect the privacy of all involved, I encourage you to use an anonymous e-mail address.
Now With The Option to Join In a Zoom Call
ADHD Partners can now participate in group support via Zoom. This is a rare and extremely invaluable resource. Many participants say that these meetings have helped them more than years of therapy—at a tiny fraction of the cost and time investment.
To join in, you’ll first need to be a member of ADHD Partner. After that, instructions will follow.
Other Support: Books and Courses
Over 22 years in this field, I’ve created an extensive body of work to support you in self-education—in all aspects of Adult ADHD.
- My first book was informed in part by years of leading these groups. It will provide the solid foundation you need to start healing your life and your relationship: Is it You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? Stopping the Roller Coaster When Someone You Love Has Attention Deficit Disorder). Available in audiobook.
- My second (co-authored) book created the first clinical guide for Adult ADHD couple therapy based on the evidence of what works for Adult ADHD and for couple therapy: Adult ADHD-Focused Couple Therapy: Clinical Interventions
- My new course provides what we should find in individual and couple therapy for ADHD — but so rarely do. At an affordable price and with opportunities for peer camaraderie via Zoom. For more info: Solving Your Adult ADHD Puzzle
- There is now Course 2 – on optimizing ADHD issues with sleep and medication.
Please note regarding my first book’s title: It as published in 2008—though all the information is “evergreen” and found nowhere else. At that time, the public still knew ADHD as Attention Deficit Disorder.
You, Me, and ADHD — Virtual Discussion Group
Finally, I’ve created another free online resource: the ADHD Virtual Discussion Group. What’s virtual about it? It’s not a group per se but you can read and join in the comments as if it were! On your own time.
This is a collection of 16 essays, each based on having read a chapter in my first book. You are invited to read and share your perspectives in the comments section.
I am particularly proud of this series and the writers behind it. Why? Because from the very beginning, I’ve never seen ADHD relationship issues as an issue of “ADHD vs. Non-ADHD”. In fact, I’ve often found that narrative harmful.
Why? Instead of paving the way toward solutions, the “ADHD vs. Non-ADHD” view sets up a false dichotomy and ready-made conflict. Rather than recognizing that poorly managed ADHD affects all of life—not just a person’s “relationships”—it implies that the only challenge is the “relationship dynamic.” Come on…..
Instead of seeing each couple as unique, it over-simplifies their challenges in a way that’s more useful to marketing than the couples themselves.
ADHD is a highly variable syndrome. Moreover, it is only one aspect of personality. Yes, there are common challenges. Let’s acknowledge them. But these people are not clones. And, neither are their partners. Each couple is unique—and guess what? Some couples are dual-ADHD!
When ADHD adversely affects, in varying degrees, that adult’s education, employment, driving skills, temper, parenting consistency, substance use, sleep, health, and many other “domains of life,” that has an impact on the partner or spouse and the children. No amount of “couple communication” training is going to address these systemic challenges. Instead, these individuals and couples need solid and joint ADHD education, support, and evidence-based strategies.
…With Essays Written by Women in Dual-ADHD Marriages
That’s why I feel so fortunate to have recruited two friends familiar with the broad spectrum of potential ADHD challenges in life and relationships to write these essays: Taylor J. (pseudonym) and Jaclyn Paul (who blogs at The ADHD Homestead).
- Are excellent, thoughtful writers
- Were diagnosed with ADHD later in life
- Are mothers to children diagnosed with ADHD
- Are married to men with late-diagnosis ADHD
You can begin reading here: Chapter 1: Adult ADHD Myths and Facts
I look forward to welcoming you!
—Gina Pera, founder and lead group moderator
16 thoughts on “Adult ADHD and Partner Support Groups & Courses”
Hi. In a dual ADHD marriage do the partners attend support groups for partners as well as people with ADHD?
Two groups, two situations.
1. ADHD Partner e-mail/website/Zoom-based group
Some members themselves have ADHD. But typically, they are the “higher-functioning” partner. They are dealing with issues also common to the so-called “non-ADHD Partner.”
The group benefits them by providing validation and support—and a place to share their perceptions and be heard.
I ask that members who have ADHD themselves try not to take personally the ADHD-related frustrations aired in the group.
It’s better to “vent” to a group than to one’s partner who might be “in denial” or on the verge of diagnosis or treatment. It’s important to be optimistic.
2. Silicon Valley Adult ADHD group
Since COVID, this in-person group has gone to Zoom.
The “partners of” are welcome but are asked to be listeners, not speakers.
Of course, it’s different for folks in dual-ADHD relationships.
This group is local to Silicon Valley and the wider SF Bay Area.
3. More support at my training platform
Through my courses, I also offer group Q&A Zoom sessions.
These are a mixed audience from around the globe — adults with ADHD (some in dual-ADHD relationships), the other partner, sometimes professionals.
A unique opportunity that I highly recommend!
I hope this helps.
Thanks Gina. Really enjoying your first book. It explains a lot for me, and hopefully at some point, my spouse who likely also has undiagnosed and untreated ADHD.
I took a screening test and have booked an appointment to get tested. He has agreed to do the online screening test but has a lot of health problems and said he doesn’t think he could handle “another diagnosis”.
I urge caution on the evaluation. They often are done poorly, and sometimes that means the only “window opportunity” shuts on one’s fingers. 🙂
I understand his reluctance to get “another diagnosis.” The thing is, ADHD itself is associated with so many health conditions…..viewing some of those conditions through the ADHD lens and getting ADHD treatment could resolve some of them.
I made this a major area of focus in Course 2: Physical Strategies (Sleep and Medication):
You can check out what’s covered at that link.
My husband is 59 and he was diagnosed when he was 55. What would you recommend reading first?
Thank you in advance,
I would start with “Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.?”
It’s very comprehensive, in explaining what ADHD is, what late-diagnosis “baggage” might look like, the potential effect on the partners of poorly managed ADHD, and the evidence-based treatment strategies. Plus a lot more. 🙂
I hope you find it helpful,
Hi gina, do you have any support groups for non adhd groups cause i have a bf who has adhd and i need someone to talk about it cause it can be frusating and annoying, i know he cant help it but it just draining sometimes.
Yes, you commented on the post that details the info. Above.
Please note: I never use the term “non-ADHD”. So if you were looking for that, that’s why you missed it.
My group for the partners of adults with ADHD welcomes anyone who has a partner with ADHD — and that sometimes includes other people with ADHD. 🙂
Have any zoom meetings been scheduled since covid?
I’m working on it.
Family illness and other COVID-related issues — plus my work — has meant I’ve had no extra time.
Moreover, the online partners group has been swelling with applications. It’s a lot to manage.
But look for them soon.
Hi. How do I join the virtual partners’ group?
You can learn more about the virtual group for the partners of adults with ADHD here:
Gina, Hmmm, maybe because I was establishing contact via my laptop and not a mobile device that was the problem. I did get your responses in my yahoo email – sorry for so many of them! – and it looks like I’m now in the group. Thanks for your facilitating that. I’m looking forward to sharing stories and solutions with the other members.
Jeannine aka Kidlet Who Cooks
Tried to join the yahoo group 3 day ago. Looks like membership process initially started. Never received the auto email application. Sent email to group addresses asking about this, but no response. Can’t start over – Join Now button no longer on page. Help!
Sorry that you had trouble. It seems that with the advent of more people receiving e-mail on mobile devices, the system has become more reliable.
I’ll find your pending application and write to you directly.