When Your Friend Suffers from ADD

Attention Deficit Disorder in my opinion is: when your friend interrupts all conversations, steering the talk back to themselves, since they must be the center of attention at all times.

Wikipedia states that Attention Deficit Disorder or ADD is “similar to the other subtypes of Attention-Deficit Hyperactive Disorder in that it is characterized primarily by inattention, easy distractibility, disorganization, procrastination, and forgetfulness. The disorder is characterized by developmentally inappropriate levels of inattention, impulsivity, and/or hyperactivity.”

According to this website, even adults can suffer from ADD, and some of the symptoms are as below:

  • Easily distracted by extraneous stimuli or irrelevant thoughts, difficulty remaining focused
  • Does not seem to listen when spoken to directly, mind seems elsewhere, even in the absence of any obvious distraction, daydreamy
  • Feels a sense of internal restlessness or discomfort, fidgety, needs to move around
  • Says or does things without thinking, makes decisions impulsively
  • Excessively talkative, interrupts or intrudes on others, butts into conversations

I’ve never realised such disease existed until I got to know this lady. We met through a mutual friend and instantly became friends. She’s very nice, smart, and friendly, but after several meet-ups I found out that she can be self-centered sometimes. Then after a few months, everyone says there’s something more about her than just being self-centered, so I looked up on the internet, typed in all the symptoms, found out about the disorder, and thought that she must be suffering from – at least a mild – ADD. I said mild because the only aspect I’ve seen her ADD is when it comes to 2 things: friendship and boys.  There were several occasions where she was being so selfish up to the stage of annoying and at the end of the night I found myself gasping for air because I got so tired for listening to her all night long and never had a chance to to tell her my stories. And when it comes to boys, well, they’re her first priority. She can just leave me right there and then at the bar to chat up with some guy who just comes in and is cute enough to attract her attention. And this is exactly why I try to keep a distance. I don’t mind being friends, but not close friends. Mostly because I don’t feel we’re in the fair, balance, friendship, and I have to give more and hardly ever have a chance to take.

She’s been calling me for weeks now, wanted to catch up and trade gossips. After running out of excuses, I agreed to meet up, just the two of us, at a nice, posh and quite bar in the city. Some of my girlfriends teased me for having a girl ‘chasing after’ me, but I know her can be a bit intense sometimes. Talking about being intense, she did made several confirmations, one was about 2 days prior to the event, then once at lunchtime, once in the afternoon, and one more call at 6 PM to make sure that I was REALLY going and finally announced that she’d arrive at 7.30PM.

She reminded me to find a a strategic spot so if cute guys turn up we would easily see them and -hopefully – can strike a conversation or two with them. I never know that going to a bar requires so many preparation and strategies!

She arrived and was in her best behaviour. This is the time when I like her best, when she’s being, well, normal. After 30 minutes we were still in the safe zone, chatting about our life, although I know that her eyes kept scanning the entire bar, searching for cute guys. Thankfully none are cute enough so far so she still paid a full attention to me. The bar is famous as a place for people to kill time while waiting 3-in-1 rules finishes, sometimes full with people who work close by, but never a trendy place for ‘cute’ guys to hang around. They are mostly serious-looking businessmen who are preoccupied with their own minds, still wearing ties and (sometimes) complete suits, because they are too busy to think about their attire and must close some hundred million dollars deal… or so I feel when see those gloomy faces.

After a while we jumped into a more ..uh… serious conversation, like: boyfriends, marriage, and children. After listening to her, (I thought) it was my time to explain my points of view. When I was about to start, a young, very cute, blonde guy walked in with a rather older lady next to him. My friend’s attention was distracted immediately, but I kept going, until 2 seconds later, during my heated blabbering, she cut me off by saying “Nit, I think he’s with his mom, not with his girlfriend…”.

I realised that it was her ADD’s talking, so I paused a while, took a deep breath, and then continued again. I learned from the past that if I ignored this type of incident, I actually can say something instead of always lending my ears to her. But her face just like there was a light bulb before and it was completely switched off.

So I stopped.

And she started again, talking about the same subjects she mentioned before, her feeling about ex-boyfriends, potential boyfriends, and so on. She didn’t pick up the conversation where we’ve left off before. It’s like I never exist or my points are not significant, and she only wants me to hear her and nothing else.

This incident happened more than once, and by 9 o’clock was completely annoyed with her and her bloody ADD. But I’ve known her for more than 3 years, and despite my friends’ complaint about her, I know I can’t change or, so I have to accept that. Easier said than done though. The worst had yet to come…

We went home to get changed, before going to the grand opening of a new club in one hotel. Feeling annoyed, I put all my irritation to make myself pretty. I wore my best dress and had my make up on. She picked me up with another friend, and three of us were inside this new, packed, smoky, boho-style, tiny club. Inside she met tons of her friends, kept saying hello to everyone. She’s the star!

Then a strange thing happened. We had to stand up because all stools were occupied. After a while I just realized that she always stood before me, facing the crowds, so I only can see her back. I’m shorter than her, so I was literally hidden behind her back. I tried to move a little so at least three of us can stand next to each other. I need my own space to drink my wine, after all. But she kept shading me away from the world, so I couldn’t see anything in front of me, because all I could see was her curly hair! I had no idea why she behaved so strangely until I realize there were many cute, young, guys standing next to me, and she didn’t shade me away, she just simply wanted to stand right next to them and the only thing she could do was standing in front of me, made me annoyed and must be moved a little and made room for her to squeeze in…

When her attempt failed because those guys were busy with themselves, despite my warning that they look so fruity, she tried to get attention by acting, dancing, talking, and laughing so loud. She even threatened to get up on stage and did the pole dancing. Lucky she obliged when I told her not to….

I remember on my birthday night, my best friend was completely mad at her. They were all talking to some cute guy who’s new in town, and being a normal, polite person, he asked each of them simple questions such as what they do for a living etc. My best friend mentioned that she’s writing a book about single girls in Jakarta, how to survive the dating games, how they cope in the situation and all. This new guy showed some interests and started asking more questions. Perhaps he also fancied my friend too, and it looked like my friend rather fancied him too. But his attempt was cut by the ADD girl, who dismissed the whole thing by saying that writing a book was certainly not a subject he’s interested in, and it was such a heavy subject to talk about in a bar. She said it so nonchalantly, leaving the guy completely confused because he didn’t feel what she said, and making my other girlfriend’s face turned into a beetroot. My friend immediately angrily dragged me to the toilet and threatened to throw the ADD girl out of her party unless I could ‘control’ her.

“Not every guy is interested in her!” my friend screamed at my ears. “I know she’s pretty, but for God’s sake the guy was talking to me, not him!”

Needless to say that the rest of the night turned sour, with my friend even refused to look at the ADD girl, who didn’t even realise what she’d done!

Then on the other day. I invited her to join lunch with my guy friend, and we met a sushi place somewhere at the Plaza Indonesia. After a brief introduction, my friend politely tried to make a conversation, an attempt that always failed because she completely ignored him during the meal, and kept talking to me alone, about herself and her current ex-boyfriend. She basically behaved that my friend didn’t exist. For people who just met and must hear someone airing her dirty laundry must be rather strange. My poor friend must endured 2 hours of awkward moment, listening to her nit-picking about how bad the ex-boyfriend was, by dating the other girl 2 days after they just broke up, how much money he actually made but how he boasted to be a rich guy, etc etc.

After we finished and said goodbye, my friend and I were walking back to our car. He then looked at me slowly, and before he said anything I immediately said sorry for thousand times. He asked what’s wrong with this ADD girl, and after I explained about her a little bit, my friend made me promise never to put him in such situation again…

Oh by the way, they met a couple of days after that in one club, and no surprise that she didn’t remember his name (but he still considered himself lucky since she still remembers his face!).

I don’t know what to do with her.

It’s like knowing that your friend has a bad breath, and you’re doomed when you tell, and you’re doomed when you don’t tell….


  1. Ohh that lady so pathetic Nit. You´ve got to be honest and say it to her just like I did. Afterwards I swear to you, You`ll feel happy.

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