Can you influence ADHD's empathy? It's complicated (2023)

It is difficult to listen and really understand how someone can be.Health articlesZishan Khan, Mindpath Health MD, provides advice with which everyone can increase consciousness and improve communication.

Can you influence ADHD's empathy? It's complicated (1)

Empathy is an essential part of emotional intelligence (EQ), which relates to the ability to recognize, understand and maintain space for the emotions and emotions of other people.

Certain habits, behaviors or personality traits can look as if you or your child have less empathy, regardless of the empathy that you really have.

For example, some symptoms that are associated with an attention deficit deficit (ADHD) could indicate a lack of empathy, explains Zishan Khan, Md, a child, a psychiatrist for adolescents and adult psychiatrists with the health of the mentality.

These symptoms can include unrest, impulsive behavior and difficulties, to respect or to stay in the task.

For example, if you live with ADHD, you can often interrupt others, look impatient with others or look impatient.

You can also react to other people or situations before saving time to take your answer into account, which can lead to words or acts that appear less than sensitive.CapableDice.

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You or your child can also lose the opportunity to share connections with others, since other features that are often connected to ADHD, such as hyperfocus, adds.

Obviously, none of them means that he does not share, understand or take care of the feelings of others.CapableHe emphasizes that many people with ADHD are very sensitive.

When it comes to the connection between ADHD and empathy, there is a lot to consider. In the following you will find a detailed exploration.

What does it mean to have little empathy?

In order to better understand empathy and how it may seem, it can help to make fundamental knowledge of how it differs from related answers such as sympathy and compassion:

Compassion:An emotional reaction to the pain and fear of a person, such as pity or sadness. They feel in other words for them.

Empathy:The ability to recognize and understand the emotions of someone. Epathy with someone means that you feel with him.

Compassion:Understanding the pain of another person and the desire to relieve this agony in any way means that they want to feel them for someone and take measures to help them.

Experts believe that empathy is a feature with which it was born, and an ability or a social reaction that can cultivate itself. They also identified two different types: cognitive and affective empathy.

Cognitive Empathie E.Abective

Cognitive empathy refers to a fundamental understanding of the feelings of other people. This type of empathy enables you to understand changes in voice, facial expression or body language that can indicate what someone thinks or feels.

Affective Empathy, also called emotional empathy, enables them to share the emotional experiences of another person or feel "with them". This way of empathy can help to feed compassion and friendly acts.

Less empathy can than:

  • tend to criticize others
  • Find that it is difficult to understand how other people feel
  • Difficulties have to forgive mistakes
  • Considering the other "very sensitive" people
  • Stoging things without taking into account the possible effects of your words
  • Act after impulse without thinking about how your behavior can affect other people
  • have little interest in the opinions or perspectives of other people
  • Feel frustrated or confused by the emotional reactions of other people

People have different levels of empathy.

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Also remember that empathy with someone means that you understand your feelings and that things can take into account from your point of view.

So stop thinking: "I feel so bad to interrupt my mother beforehand. I do it, even if you don't want to be frustrating for her," demonstrates her empathy.

Does ADHD cause low empathy?

For many people with ADHD, the world may seem chaotic, overwhelming and difficult to navigate.CapableSymptoms such as impulsiveness and difficulties to concentrate on tasks can make understanding and processing into their own feelings, let alone appreciate what others experience.

"Sometimes ADHD can not notice situations in which they do not notice what they said as rude."CapableExplain.

Obviously, this does not automatically lead to low empathy.They all wait and worry that they completely ruin the paper.

Search results

Some limited tests indicate a possible connection between ADHD and lower emotional empathy.

The authors of a study from 2018 divided 112 participants and adolescents into two groups: 56 people with subclinical ADHD (they had ADHD characteristics, but without official diagnosis) and 56 people who reported or only very few characteristics of ADHS.SIECombined for the participants for the status of the students., Sex and age

All participants have filled out several questionnaires to measure empathy, social cognitive style and friendship behavior.

Those who reported more symptoms of the ADH-O group with subclinical values of ADHD to emotional empathy measures.

The researchers also found significant differences in dozens of cognitive empathy.

They found that the subclinical TDAH participants have more of a "systematizing" cognitive style. This style that implies that they have more attention to detail and a high capacity for analysis is more common in men and people in the autistic spectrum.

The researchers have proposed that lower empathy values in people with ADHD with a lack of attention, impulsiveness and difficulties can obtain the tasks of executive function such as planning, time management and organization.

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Nevertheless, it is important to consider that none of these participants had a real clinical diagnosis of ADHD.

In summary, experts must examine the connection between empathy and ADHD, especially in adults, before they can come to a conclusion

How to deal with

The difficulty of understanding or relating others can contribute to tensions or conflicts in their relationships.

However, good communication skills can help you inform your loved ones, who can improve your titles and help you create permanent connections.

For example, you can help:

  • Explain how your symptoms appear:This can mean say to your friends and love that you do not intend to cut or speak you: it is extremely concentrated on what you say.
  • Ask further questions:Communication implies listening and talking. Take a break to ask someone what he gives for the opportunity to connect, learn his perspective and practice active and reflective listening.
  • Pay attention to the body language council:Body language can offer a lot of vision about what someone thinks and feels. Job is found and faces an open and relaxed attitude, is probably very interested in what you change. The problem when the person stretches away or plays with the phone.
  • Share your needs:This can mean that your loved ones know how you can help. For exampleDoing where time is really important can you tell me that I should arrive 30 minutes earlier? "
  • Exercise to become vulnerable:Tend to keep your own thoughts and feelings for yourself? If you express your emotions more precisely, you can connect with others and improve your relationships.

There is also the outstanding effect that you should take into account: People around you generally do not recognize your actions or "defects" in general, as you think.

Even if you realize that you arrive too late for every 5 minutes or often jump into the conversations when you are excited, you probably don't automatically assume that you are sensitive.

How the therapy can help

If you live with ADHD, therapy can help you understand how specific symptoms appear in your life.

The ADHD, which is not diagnosed and not treated, can have a major impact on his life and relationships, but a trained therapist can have special guidelines with:

  • Identify specific symptoms and their effects
  • Learn ways to deal with these symptoms more effectively
  • Practice communication skills to create your needs with people in your life
  • Explore ideas in order to combine themselves with other people
  • Tear all the concerns about the lack of empathy

Sandra Calzadilla, LMHC, explains: “Think in this way: Can you go to the gym alone and train? Of course, but if you think you need more help with the exercises you have to do, how often andHow long an expert can keep on the way to achieve your goals."

For example, if it is often delayed, a therapist can help him explore possible triggers, e.g.

Rejection sensitive dysphoria

A therapist can also help him research and work sensitive dysphoria (RSD) and work, which is often associated with ADHD and autism.

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RSD implies that he has experienced intensive and overwhelming emotional suffering after receiving criticism or negative reactions to others or believing that others have somehow failed or disappointed.

This sensitivity to rejection can hinder and express the process.

Could the drug mark the difference?

A small study of 2021 suggests that methylphenidate (Ritalin), a stimulating drug that is often used to treat ADHD that can increase emotional empathy (affective) in adolescents and children with ADHD.

According to the authors of the study, this drug increases the mirror of cerebral chemicals dopamine and noradrenaline and contributes to reducing impulsiveness and increasing the attention for people with ADHD

Methylphenidate does not automatically increase empathy, since empathy is a learned ability. The treatment of ADHD symptoms can make it easier to consider possible consequences of your words and actions or help you emotionally contact others without being distracted.

Where does the high empathy fit?

According to Zoe Martínez, MD, a psychiatrist certified by the Dely Council and the clinical leader, the hypersensitivity is a common feature of people with ADHD.

In particular, it can be hypersensitive to information in your environment or to filter more difficult to filter the sensory entry from other people, including subtle emotional information, such as:B. Changes to the facial expressions or the tone of the voice.

She can quickly stimulate this greater sensitivity to emotional energy in social situations. This can also mean:

  • Feel intensively affected by the emotions and humor of others and have difficulties in situations in which other strong emotions express
  • Feel separate when someone else shows an intense emotional reaction
  • Try to avoid excessive emotional situations
  • Problems have to create limits when people share intensive emotions
  • Take away others to protect yourself
  • Because it is difficult for him to manage or control your emotions when he feels overwhelmed

If you try to explore more empathy and sensitivity,CapableAnd advancement advises:

  • Give the newspaper about your emotions time
  • Practice the full care techniques to effectively identify and manage emotional symptoms
  • Learn to determine limits in relationships to protect emotionally and to preserve your energy
  • Use of movement, deep breathing or meditation to relieve stress in situations with emotional stress

The lower line

The ability to attract another person and understand their feelings can enable them to react to a friendly, loving and compassionate way that can strengthen their relationships.

If you find it difficult to relate emotionally with others, to recognize your feelings and to express your own emotions, professional support can make a difference.

A therapist can offer more guidelines to control the symptoms of the ADHD that they suffer, as well as communication techniques and strategies to promote greater empathy.

(Video) Should You Be Assessed For ADHD? Psychiatrist, Dr Stephen Humphries - Harley Therapy

Read the fullHealth articlesWith sources.


1. ADHD and Autism Relationship Accommodations -- How to Get Your Needs Met
(How to ADHD)
2. ADHD and Emotional Dysregulation: What You Need to Know
(How to ADHD)
3. ADHD and Emotions: How Mindfulness Can Help (& 3 Questions to Ask!)
(How to ADHD)
4. Why are relationships so difficult? (yet still so important for autistic people)
(Autism From The Inside)
5. Recognizing ADHD in Adults | Heather Brannon | TEDxHeritageGreen
(TEDx Talks)
6. 5 Signs of Dissociation
(Kati Morton)


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