They may be trying their best to concentrate on what the other person is saying, but their minds have three other things going on at the same time.This can get even worse during chaotic group conversations.
The experience of having ADHD can also harm a child's self-esteem, as they may start to think of themselves as stupid or defective.
Lastly, people with ADHD may have other learning disabilities at the same time.
This can be another effect of their difficulty with focusing on one subject.
While trying to pay attention to another person, they may not be able to keep their mind from drifting off or fixating on something else.
On the link below you'll find a training series focused on how to feel at ease socially, even if you tend to overthink today.
It also covers how to avoid awkward silence, attract amazing friends, and why you don't need an "interesting life" to make interesting conversation. The points above can contribute to an adult with ADHD not listening well.
They may also not be paying attention to non-verbal cues because their minds are distracted and focused on other things. In conversations an adult with ADHD may accidentally offend someone by saying something inappropriate the instant it pops into their head. Someone may frequently interrupt the people they're talking to. If they think of something they want to say they may start speaking before taking the time to realize that now wouldn't be the best time to do it. This can be because they feel an internal pressure to keep speaking.
They may also be enthusiastically chatting about a topic, and miss the non-verbal signs that the other people aren't that interested and would like them to move on to something else.
There are a few reasons adults with ADHD can have trouble in social situations.
The first is that their differences in brain wiring simply make certain tasks harder for them.
This naturally has a big effect on their higher education and work performance.