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"For many decades, many mental health professionals received no training in this disorder, particularly if they were specializing in adults." That finally started to change in the mid- to late 1990s, he says, and awareness of and education about adult ADHD continue to improve.

"School, occupation, money, credit, sex, work life, raising children—it hits them all." As the Stevensons learned, undiagnosed ADHD can hit relationships hard.

Research findings on the relationship between divorce rates and ADHD are somewhat mixed, but several studies have turned up a link.

"It feels like there's a carnival in my head," Elizabeth Stevenson says.

"My brain is going in so many different directions, it's very difficult to look at a list and pick out what I need to do first." ADHD is a neurobiological disorder.

Executive functioning involves five areas of daily behaviors, he explains: time management, organization, motivation, concentration and self-discipline.