ADHD broken iphoneBeing married to someone with ADHD is a lot of fun, but sometimes it forces you to take matters into your own hands.

Jen and I both switched from BlackBerry to iPhone a couple of months ago, and we both have protective cases by Otterbox on our new phones. You may or may not know this, but iPhones are made of glass (yikes!) and are therefore extremely fragile. With the added threat of a grabby toddler, the super-protective Otterbox cases were the best choice for us.

The Otterbox cushions the iPhone in thick rubber and hard plastic, and protects the screen with what the company refers to as a “protective membrane.” The membrane does get smudged and dirty (especially when it comes into contact with sticky toddler hands), so you are supposed to periodically remove the case and clean it with soap and water.

Removing and reinstalling the case is not the easiest thing in the world (it’s like breaking into Fort Knox), so when I noticed that Jen had taken the Otterbox case off her phone, I was concerned.

“Honey, why did you take the case off your phone?”

“Oh, the screen is really smudged so I have to clean it.”

“Okay, you’d better take care of that right away and put the case back on so your phone doesn’t get damaged”

“Yeah, I will.”

Weeks went by. Jen’s iPhone lived life on the edge, with zero protection from the elements, baring itself boldly in the face of our unpredictable child. I was panic-stricken, but I didn’t want to nag Jen to clean iPhone case. I did, however, give her the occasional reminder that her phone was playing with fire. I was always met with, “Yeah, I know, I’ll get to it.”

I started making bets with myself. “I bet she has the case back on by this weekend.” No. “I’m sure she’ll have it back on by Wednesday.” No. On and on. I lost every bet.

The case stayed on the table where it had been sitting for weeks, until finally Jen was getting ready to go to the ADHD Coaches Organization conference in Atlanta, and I couldn’t stomach the thought of her risking air travel with a 4-inch piece of glass in her purse. I quickly cleaned the Otterbox and wrangled it back onto her phone while she was in the shower.

Not only did Jen procrastinate cleaning the case for so long that I was compelled to do it right before she left for the airport, but she didn’t even notice that the case was back on! She resumed her game of Words with Friends as if nothing was different, as if her phone didn’t suddenly have a Batman suit on after weeks of being stark naked.

An hour or so later she asks, “Hey, did you clean my case and put it back on? Thank you so much!”

Just doing my job, ma’am. Just doing my job.


Erin Korey About Erin Korey

Erin Korey is the Managing Partner and Chief Operations Officer of the ADD Management Group, LLC and


  1. Love this post…’s so like me. My phone glass has been cracked for ummmm 2 mths now. Piece of glass got caught in my thumb once already. I’ll fix it eventually :-).

    • Erin Korey Erin Korey says:

      Donata, that made me laugh so hard. Could you have illustrated my point any better?! Get that phone fixed! 😉

  2. My knock off blackberry (Alcatel) is looking like that cracked iphone due to my beloved ADHDer. Now I’m just procrastinating and hoping not to get any glass splinters for the next few weeks. 😛
    Fun little story and for us spouses of ADHD it’s hard to wait for them to get a cue on things or not be passive aggressive and just do it ourselves. For over a week I left the garbage in the centre of our small kitchen hoping she would take a turn to empty and clean it. Eventually I caved, but I’m working on communicating better as we limit these procrastination spats little by little.

    • Erin Korey Erin Korey says:

      Michael, that sounds like something I would do — leave the garbage in the middle of the floor as an experiment! haha Best of luck with all that! Communication is key.

  3. This was very well written. As someone still coming to terms with my ADD, I was diagnose till after age 30! Anyways you did the right thing. If you want something done now, go ahead and do it. I have no problem with letting my partner take care of things I will probably never do and vice versa. I enjoy your writing a lot.
    Thank you

  4. that’s hilarious! Jen’s really lucky to have you. I am searching for my own personal assistant/life partner. (: