How Gender And ADHD Traits Affect Romantic Relationships

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Aliesha Marie Knauer (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Will Canu

Abstract: Studies have shown how Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) can have negative effects on peer relationships in children and adolescents, but much less is known about romantic relationships. From that scan of literature, we know that those who possess ADHD tend to have trouble with both relationship dissatisfaction and dissolution. Further, some studies report girls with ADHD to have more trouble making friends than boys and women with ADHD to be more negatively affected in their marriage than their male counterparts. This study seeks to examine whether ADHD and biological sex interact to affect the quality of romantic relationships in college students (N = 200, 82.5% female, M age = 19.67 years old). Symptomology and relationship quality were assessed using the Barkley Adult ADHD Rating Scale-IV, IOWA couples conflict scale, infidelity and communication questionnaires, and the Network of Relationships Inventory - Behavior Systems Version. The most salient findings were that participants with high ADHD symptomatology reported more negative relationship qualities than the low ADHD trait group, and females had more positive relationship qualities than males. Interaction effects in 2 (gender: male vs. female) X 2 (ADHD symptomatology: low vs. high) analyses of variance (ANOVAs) were not detected, but pairwise group results sometimes indicated the possibility of sex x ADHD interaction. Overall, the results suggest that both sex and ADHD traits can play an important role in quality of romantic relationships.

Additional Information

Honors Project
Knauer, A. (2020). How Gender And ADHD Traits Affect Romantic Relationships. Unpublished Honors Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2020
ADHD symptomatology, gender, sex, relationships

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