Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review

, Volume 13, Issue 2, pp 181–198 | Cite as

The Importance of Friendship for Youth with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

  • Amori Yee MikamiEmail author


It is well-established that youth with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are often peer-rejected and rated by parents, teachers, and observers to have poor social skills, when compared to typically developing peers. Significantly less research, however, has been devoted to the experiences youth with ADHD have in their close friendships. The aim of this article is to draw attention to friendship as a distinct construct from peer rejection and social skills and to summarize what is known about youth with ADHD in their friendships. The potential for stable, high-quality friendships to buffer the negative outcomes typically conferred by peer rejection in this population is discussed. This article concludes with recommendations for interventions that specifically target improving the close friendships of youth with ADHD as a treatment strategy.


Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder Friendship Peer relationships 



I am grateful to the families and teachers who have participated in my studies over the years, as well as to my graduate students (Allison Jack, Matthew Lerner, Marissa Griggs, Christina Emeh, and Meg Reuland) and undergraduate research assistants who have helped move this line of research forward. I would also like to thank Howard Abikoff for his contributions to discussions of these ideas. During the preparation of this manuscript, I was supported by National Institutes of Mental Health 1R03MH079019 and the National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA

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