Communication can be so hard with someone that is hard to get on topic
Out of curiosity, how often do you let her choose the topic of communication?
When I was a teenager with untreated, unknown ADHD, my parents were very frustrated with the way I would shut down emotionally when they breached difficult subjects, like school responsibilities. (They eventually, and damagingly, gave up on me…) But, I remember a few good times where my parents pulled back from trying to force the conversation on me, but did not retreat so far that I felt abandoned by them. In these times, I was a lot more comfortable bringing up the hard topics and asking for help.
Perhaps if you let her lead the conversation more often, you’ll get the results you want more easily over time. Remember, ADHD is not a deficit of attention, it’s a struggle with executive function ie. focusing on the “right” thing at the “right” time.
Trouble communicating with a teen, I’ve never heard of that…
Lightbulb moment! Despite having similar issues myself it frustrates me immensely when my daughter does this, but I never clicked that it might be directly linked to ADHD… that makes a lot of sense. I will make a more conscious effort to let her direct the conversation next time. Maybe leaving a post it on her noticeboard with the topic we need to talk about, and let her bring it to me when she’s ready? In fact I just realised I already do this with my husband, sending him an email titled whatever the thing is, and telling him to let me know when his plate is clear enough to discuss it.