ADHD Oversharing

ADHD Oversharing

Oversharing is a common behavioral trait in individuals with ADHD, often stemming from impulsivity and difficulties in social awareness. This can lead to sharing excessive personal information without considering the context or the listener's comfort. While it can foster open communication, oversharing may also strain relationships and social interactions. It's important for those with ADHD to develop awareness of their communication patterns and practice restraint when necessary. Learning to gauge the appropriateness of shared information is crucial for maintaining healthy relationships and effective social interactions.

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Written by

Alice Gendron

Founder of The Mini ADHD Coach

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Is Oversharing A Symptom Of ADHD?

If you have ADHD, you may have noticed that you overshare experiences, thoughts and ideas with new people too fast, too soon. 🙈 While it’s not an official ADHD symptom, it certainly appears to be a common experience within the community. But why?

  • People with ADHD might overshare to fast-track emotional connections and manage intense emotions.

  • During social interactions, it can be tough for those of us with ADHD to gauge the pace and depth of sharing, thanks to our need for constant stimulation and symptoms such as impulsivity. 🏃

  • Conversations thrive with balance, and oversharing can lead to feelings of shame or rejection for those with ADHD.

For people with ADHD, it's crucial to develop self-awareness in social settings. Carefully pacing our discussions and valuing quality over quantity can allow more meaningful connections to flourish and save us from the pressure of oversharing. 🥰

Have you ever found yourself, maybe during a lull in the chatter at a dinner party, revealing slightly too much with someone you've only just met? 😬This phenomenon - oversharing - happens when we get too deep too quickly, without considering the usual filters most people apply.

Oversharing can occur anywhere, from a one-on-one social interaction where you reveal too much information about your personal life to an online post where you type first and think later. It can happen to anyone, too - but for adults with ADHD, the reasons behind this habit can often be traced back to key ADHD symptoms.

For individuals with ADHD, particularly those without a formal ADHD diagnosis, understanding which symptoms are behind our reasons for oversharing can enable us to develop better self-awareness and control over social interactions. 

So, what are some of the reasons we might overshare - and why? 🤔

Trying to Fast-Track Connections

Struggling to make friends is common for adults with ADHD, thanks in part to a fear of rejection (rejection-sensitive dysphoria) - and the challenges with executive function skills that can make sustained attention tough. It's tempting to overshare to instantly deepen a bond, thinking it might lead to that 'me too!' moment. 🙋

However, oversharing can backfire, especially when chatting with a new friend who may prefer a gradual pace. For those with ADHD, intense emotions are often part of the package - however, many neurotypical folks process emotions more gradually and could retreat if overwhelmed. 😞

The strategy? Pace yourself. Share in bits to let the connection grow naturally. If deep conversations from the get-go are your thing, that's okay, too - neurodiverse circles might lead to stronger relationships for you. 👌But when navigating more neurotypical spaces, remember that too much too fast can stall rather than speed up a friendship. Take it slow, carefully revealing your world one piece at a time.

Feeling A False Sense Of Closeness 

For us chatty adults with ADHD, every person we meet can feel like a potential friend, and our excitement can have us telling new people our life story before we've even settled into the conversation. 😂 We skip the small talk and dive headfirst into the deep end of personal stories, and while that might work with some, it can leave others feeling like they've just been hit with a tidal wave of information.

Although it can be tricky, grasping social cues is essential, particularly for adults with ADHD. It's about timing and knowing when to share a story or hold back, ensuring that our discussion matches the pace of others around us. This ability is a crucial component in managing our ADHD challenges, helping us gauge when we're in sync with social norms.

Impulse control plays a huge role here, too. It acts as an internal checkpoint, prompting us to consider if now is the right moment to express our thoughts or if we should pause and reflect a bit more. ⏸️ Mastering this can lead to more fulfilling and interesting conversations where everyone feels at ease.

By intentionally slowing it down, we can begin to share ourselves in a way that invites others in gradually. This approach doesn't just prevent those embarrassing moments of accidental oversharing, but it might also allow us to play it cool and pique people's interest as they get to know us bit by bit. 😎

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To Avoid Awkward Silences

For many adults with ADHD, a lull in the chatter isn't a welcome opportunity for reflection - it feels inherently unbearable. The ADHD brain often seeks stimulation, and consequently, silence isn't golden - it's boring. So, what do we do? We might jump in with a fun fact, a funny memory, or a story - anything to fill the void. Before we know it, we've divulged a bit (or a lot) more than we originally intended. 😬

It's not that we want to monopolize the conversation by blurting things out as soon as they pop into our heads. Nope, it's just that the ADHD brain is wired for action, and talking is one way to keep the momentum going. 🚀The hyperactive elements of ADHD ramp up our need for engagement, and when silence looms, we might leap to fill it without taking a beat to listen or reflect.

Now, of course, not all silences are awkward or need to be filled. Sometimes, they're just breathers - a moment for thoughts to settle and conversations to find new directions. For friends or new acquaintances, this can be a subtle dance of give-and-take. And for us, it's an opportunity to practice a bit of self-control. Learning to appreciate the golden moments of silence can enrich our social skills, making our conversations even more rewarding. 😍

So, when you next find yourself sitting in silence, remember it's not a cue for a performance. 😂 Let that funny story or bright idea simmer a bit longer. Our lives are full of moments worth talking about, but they don't all have to be shared simultaneously. By pacing our conversation and giving the other person multiple opportunities to speak, we can create a more meaningful dialogue and connect more deeply with them.

Trying To Manage Social Anxiety

Social anxiety is a frequent companion for many ADHD adults. When you're trying to manage this, the impulse to overshare can strike at any moment. This tendency to overshare is like a reflex when social jitters hit. It's often less about a desire to connect and more about an inner pressure to fill every gap with talk to ensure the other person is interested in and approves of you.  

Realizing mid-flow that you're giving a monologue instead of engaging in dialogue can jolt you into an overcorrection mode. Suddenly, you're apologizing profusely for saying the wrong thing, which sends you back down a whole new spiral of panic. 🤐 By the end, you're left with feelings of shame and even rejection. 

Breaking this cycle starts with recognizing the value of your thoughts, feelings, and words. Social skills aren't just about talking; they're about the harmony of give-and-take. For people with ADHD, cultivating this balance can seem daunting, but it's entirely possible. It's about embracing the pause, letting others contribute, and realizing that your worth isn't measured by how much you say but by the quality of your connections.

So, take a breath, collect your thoughts, and remember that a conversation is a shared experience - you have nothing to prove to anybody but yourself.  💕

Key Takeaways

  • While oversharing is not an official symptom of ADHD, many people with ADHD find themselves revealing too much about their personal lives and even oversharing things other people might find inappropriate or uncomfortable to discuss so early on.

  • When oversharing, we may not even realize when the other person feels uncomfortable or overwhelmed. But most people with ADHD don’t overshare due to being rude - they’re often dealing with symptoms that lead them to talk excessively in the hope that they can relate to others or regulate their emotions.  

  • Rushing to share personal stories with new acquaintances may seem like a shortcut to deep connections for folks with ADHD, but it can overwhelm others. Taking it step by step allows friendships to form comfortably for everyone involved.

  • Many of us with ADHD may bypass small talk for deep, personal shares, aiming to quickly establish closeness. However, tuning into social cues and controlling impulses to overshare can make interactions more comfortable and inviting for all.

  • Although we might find silence unsettling, not every pause in conversation needs to be filled with chatter. Learning to appreciate these moments can strengthen bonds and prevent accidental oversharing.

  • For ADHD adults, social anxiety can trigger a cascade of oversharing. Recognizing the value of your contributions can help manage this impulse and create genuine connections and shared conversations that are not dominated by one person.

  • Oversharing isn’t necessarily ‘wrong’ or ‘bad’ - for many diagnosed with ADHD, it’s a way to bond with friends and family more effectively. But it’s important to remember that there’s a difference between oversharing and sharing - and it’s up to us to decide where our boundaries are when connecting with others.

What's Next? 

Want to learn more about some of the key ADHD traits behind oversharing? We’ve got you.

How To Overcome ADHD and Being Socially Awkward

Do Adults With ADHD Talk Fast?

Navigating ADHD and the Urge to Interrupt People

ADHD & Rejection: Are We Afraid of Being Rejected?

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ADHD and Oversharing: FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

What is oversharing of information?

Oversharing information is when you reveal more information than is necessary or when you say things that should not be discussed. 

Is oversharing a symptom of ADHD?‍

Officially, it’s not. However, some symptoms of ADHD - such as being forgetful and getting impulsive - can cause you to share too much information to others. 

What are the effects of sharing too much information?

Oversharing can put a strain on relationships, not to mention other people might get worried about telling you details about their life in the fear that you’ll reveal it to others. Moreover, it can also cause trouble at work due to confidentiality.

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