Co-Parenting with an ADHD Ex


Co-parenting after a Pasadena divorce presents special challenges when your ex has ADHD. People who suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder are easily distracted, forgetful, and struggle to stay organized. They have poor listening skills and tend to overlook important details. In a marriage, the spouse without ADHD often takes over the burden of managing day-to-day parenting tasks. After the divorce, however, the adult with ADHD is left to figure things out for themselves.

You can’t change your ex, but there are several things you can do to make it less stressful to co-parent together. One easy way to minimize the stress of dealing with an ex who suffers from ADHD is to have separate items for each household. If your budget can accommodate the expense, having extra clothes, toys, and school supplies for the children will greatly reduce your stress level. Instead of constantly reminding your ex to make sure the kids bring their belongs back to your house, everything you need will already be in its place.

If you can’t swing duplicate purchases, create a laminated checklist of items that can be used to make sure everyone’s bags are packed properly. Children who are old enough to read can be taught to use this list as well.

Many adults with ADHD struggle to properly supervise a child’s homework. If possible, try to make sure homework is done at your house. If this is not an option, consider hiring a tutor to supervise homework or seeing if your child’s school offers any after school programs that can provide the necessary homework supervision.

If your children are involved in extracurricular activities that overlap with your ex’s visitation, enlist the help of coaches, teachers, and other supervisors to make sure your ex receives plenty of reminders about when each child needs to be at an event. If your children are old enough, buy them a color-coded calendar or day planner that they can use to help keep track of their schedules.

Adult ADHD can be frustrating to deal with, but it’s helpful to think of this as a blessing in disguise. As you’re creating an organizational system to make co-parenting less stressful for yourself, you’re also teaching your children about time management and taking responsibility for managing their own schedules. These are skills any child needs to become a successful, independent adult.

How Can We Help?

Please call our office at (626) 683-8113 or email us at if you are in need of legal representation during your divorce. Our Pasadena divorce law firm has extensive experience advocating for the needs of parents and their children.