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Housework Most Hated by ADHD Adults

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No one enjoys doing the dishes or gets dizzy at the prospect of paperwork. But for people with ADHD whose brains are wired to seek stimulation, a monotonous, repetitive task or errand can feel positively painful. Add to that the executive dysfunction that makes individuals with ADHD masters of procrastination, and you’ll find that people go to great lengths to dodge what they dread.

We asked ADDitude readers to talk about the cleaning tasks or task they like to hate, and what they do to avoid it (or, occasionally, to improve on it). Is there a stain that you would like to see disappear from the face of the earth? Tell us all about your hate/hate relationship with him in the comments below.

I absolutely hate everything about doing my tax return: having to find receipts, payslips, expenses, deductions. I feel like no sooner have I done it than it’s time to do it again. I ignore it for a few years until I get a threatening letter from the taxman, then I make an appointment with the accountant to do several years at a time. I feel relieved to be up to date and to live on that feeling for the next few years. – A ADDitude Reader

Dishes – the vile and evil dirty dishes. I’m going to scrub the toilet with a small brush before I do the dishes. Yet every day, on my to-do list, my calendar, my Alexa reminders, the task is there, desperately needing to be tackled. — Michelle

I hate flossing! I’ve never been able to make it a part of my morning or bedtime routine consistently. In my mind, flossing is a huge disruption and will take too long. When the time comes, “I will do it tomorrow” is the mantra. I rarely do tomorrow. – A ADDitude Reader

[Download: Stop Procrastinating! 18 ADHD-Friendly Ways to Get Things Done]

“Vacuuming or mopping. I’ll wipe the floors with a damp cloth with my foot so I don’t have to set up the mop or untangle the vacuum. Fortunately, we now have a robot vacuum cleaner, which is a big help. — Cam, Australia

“OH MY GOD laundry! Gah! I bought socks and underwear to avoid doing this, and I have hundreds of shirts. I usually wait three to six months before doing laundry. My record was 14 months during the pandemic. I had so much laundry that I had to take many, many breaks while folding. It’s a good thing that my laundromat is open 24 hours a day, because I didn’t leave until the next morning. —Kitty, Brooklyn

Make “adult” Phone calls, like calling the credit card company and setting up appointments. Between ADHD and a language processing disorder, it’s just plain stressful. I postponed a phone call that took 15 minutes for several years because I hate it so much. – A ADDitude Reader

“Heaps and heaps and heaps of miscellaneous paperwork that needs to be resolved one way or another. sometimes I stay in bed for hours on days I’m not working just to avoid having to deal with paperwork. I’ve been doing this for as long as I can remember, and I’m very ashamed of it. – A ADDitude Reader

[Read: What is ADHD? Symptoms, Causes, Treatments]

“Put the garbage in the dumpsters. I don’t notice the bin is full or if I do I think I’ll deal with it later and then forget. Then either I have a stinky kitchen or I feeling bad because my roommate is doing the work for both of us. — A ADDitude Reader

Cooking meals! The bane of my life! I can’t stand the smells, the textures, the executive function needed to follow a recipe, and the smell of my clothes after cooking food. I only cook because I have to feed my beloved children. – A ADDitude Reader

“I absolutely hate making salads. Wash, peel, slice, chop, then throw them together seems like a pointless activity for not enough reward.” – A ADDitude Reader

“When I was a child, I helped my mother iron clothes. She grew up hating the task and I hated her too. One day when I was a teenager, I finally said, “Mom, why don’t you just hang up the clothes after they come out of the dryer?” It hadn’t occurred to her because she didn’t have an electric clothes dryer as a child. The task has almost disappeared from the face of the earth thanks to changes in our ways of doing things. – A ADDitude Reader

Household chores and ADHD: next steps

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