Adult Archives

2011 Recap:




December 6th, 2011:


Was the conversation around your Thanksgiving dinner table boring, with people making small talk about sports and weather?

Or did it end in a big argument?

Someone even mailed me a copy of their rejoinder to a debate they recently had with an uncle at one of their family gatherings!

You, too, can be the life of your next Christmas party, or the calming voice of reason, if you prepare by attending our next CHADD meeting at Calvin College where we will welcome:

Eli Isaguirre the West Michigan Coordinator of MCH,

“Michigan Consumers for Healthcare”

when he presents: “The Affordable Care Act and the Challenges Ahead!”When your Uncle Harold says, “No one is going to make me buy health insurance!” and your Aunt Helen says, “Because we can’t afford it!” you will know just what to say!

If your Uncle Eric says, “So who is going to be footing the bill for this?
I can’t afford higher taxes!” you will have the answer!

And if your mom explains that after your dad lost his job and they spent their entire life savings, trying to keep their group health plan as long as COBRA would allow, to ensure that their pre-existing conditions would be covered after your dad got a new job with benefits,

And your sister adds that none of the individual plans in Michigan provide mental health coverage, and that your folks won’t be poor enough to be eligible for Medicaid until your Dad decides to sell his ’65 Ford Mustang that he’s been refurbishing for the past 25 years,

And your mom says she was turned down for an individual health insurance plan because she was on a $40 medication to prevent bone loss, which they said was a pre-existing condition, even though she hadn’t been diagnosed with  osteoporosis, nor had it.

And your dad said he was turned down for coverage because he had been prescribed a medication for high blood pressure, though no longer needed it after he quit working,

And your cousin said he’d heard that VA benefits were going to end, January 1st,

And your mom explains that though Blue Cross Blue Shield is supposed to accept people with pre-existing conditions, that even if they could have afforded to pay the monthly premiums, they would still have had to pay a $10,000 deductible before their medical expenses would be covered. She said, “How can someone out of work afford that!?”

And Uncle Eric declares that none of this will affect him, because he will soon be old enough to be on Medicare,

And you’ve been thinking of starting a small business, but didn’t want to lose your group health benefits when you eventually quit your job…

You will be able to settle these debates
by knowing the facts!



You may be surprised to learn about a new program called HIP, the new “Health Insurance Plan for Michigan,” a federal risk pool created under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that will be available while federal funding lasts–which is expected to be until 2014 when similar coverage will be provided through Health Insurance Exchanges!

No cost, pre-registration,
or diagnosis required.  All are welcome!

Click for directions to Calvin College. We meet in the Meeter Center Lecture Hall, to the right of the fireplace off of the library lobby.

7-9 pm, first Tuesdays, year-round, 
no cost or pre-registration required. All interested are welcome!

Membership information is available at our meetings. Membership to CHADD National is encouraged, though not required to attend.

Monthly meetings are free and open to all interested.  Feel free to attend either or both monthly groups since some topics are of interest to both.

Call Linda Brauer at 616-874-5662, or send us an e-mail, to get more information. Please call if you would like to present at a meeting–including telling your story, or if you would like to volunteer.


OCTOBER 4th, 2011:

“AD/HD Awareness Week: The Experts Speak Out!”

Even if you’re already “aware” of AD/HD, (or even all too aware), some things bare repeating!
During a 40 minute presentation Thomas Brown, Ned Hallowell, Russell Barkley, and David Neeleman will share their personal perspectives on:

  • why it’s important for doctors to listen–not just assume,

  • how AD/HD has always been around, but that it used to be a “moral diagnosis,” causing people to end up being blamed, punished, and ostracized…

  • how problems of “executive function” impacts AD/HD,

  • what children need most… (to feel welcome, valued, worthwhile, to belong, to have hope, to be treated fairly, to laugh…) and why these are important,

  • how AD/HD causes more impairment in more life domains than any other psychiatric disorder, not requiring institutionalization,

  • hear someone talk candidly about the problems he had, throughout school, and how he was able to capitalize on his ability to find unique, simple solutions to problems, who became very successful, (including what he ended up doing about a tree that had been leaning over his house, that Ned Hallowell decided to mention!)

    This will be followed by an interactive discussion.



SEPTEMBER 6th, 2011:

“Making Your Job Work for You!”

Last month we discussed what different experts suggest at our last CHADD Adult Group meeting.  Now come share what you’ve learned about how you function best!  At what types of jobs, or in what situations or settings do you excel?
Which are most important?  Which are essential?

When the task requires skills that capitalize on your strengths?

When there is a lot of activity, or few interruptions or distractions?

Where others view you positively?  Where others help you succeed?

When you are under pressure, such as when you are challenged by a goal or having to compete against others?

When you are passionate?  Interested?   Helping others?  When working with others? Working alone?   Can partner with someone?

When you can interact with others?

When social skills are not required?

When expectations/your role is clear?

When you don’t have to plan, keep track?

When you are not required to do a lot of paperwork?

When there are flexible hours, or you can work from home?

When the work supports my values?

Allows you to learn new things?

Allows you to be creative?

When you can have someone to assist you, like a secretary?

In which jobs or situations do you have difficulty and why?

When bored or the work is repetitive, mindless?

When working at a certain speed is essential.

When you are expected to figure out what to do on your own with little feedback?

When there are no deadlines?  No job description?  Little routine?

When you must do things a certain way?  Have to keep track, decide quickly?

What causes you to have problems when trying to accomplish a task?


Need more down time or to get psyched up?

Get side tracked by e-mail, interruptions, text messaging?  Noise?

Don’t “know your place?”

Interrupt people?  Monopolize the conversation?  Don’t ask questions when not sure?

Still finishing tomorrow?

Call in sick?  Not punctual?

Tell people off?

Disorganized?  Make Careless mistakes?  Can’t keep track?

Don’t plan ahead, so miss deadline, waste time and resources?

What has helped you with..?
Impulsivity?  Distractibility?  Hyperactivity?  Memory?  Keeping track?  Boredom?  Time Management

The Adult Group will discuss AD/HD in the Workplace!

If currently employed and have changed jobs in the past 10 years, 43% leave jobs due to AD/HD.

Find out whether having been medically treated in childhood makes it more or less likely that someone will be unemployed as an adult.

Which symptoms affect unemployment the most?  How much more is someone likely to earn/year if someone does not have AD/HD?

What are your legal rights?  When should you disclose and how?

How can AD/HD be an asset on the job?

What kinds of careers are best for people with AD/HD?  Are some not just a good fit?

What accommodations are realistic to ask for?  Can you ask for your own secretary?

How many times has someone with AD/HD sued their employer?

What if you feel you are being harassed and scapegoated, but not necessarily because you have a disability?

If you feel you have been discriminated against, “who ya gonna call?”

May 3, Part 2– we will watch the conclusion of Barkley’s presentation on emotions, followed by an interactive discussion.  What are your emotional triggers?  What have you found helpful in calming yourself down and preventing yourself from becoming your own worst enemy?!  How do you relax and replenish?

April 5, 2011, Russell Barkley, Ph.D., “The Importance of Emotions in Understanding and Managing AD/HD-Part 1”

Can you think of one symptom of AD/HD that causes more social rejection and impairment than the 3 classic symptoms we have generally come to associate with having AD/HD:   Inattention, Impulsivity, and Hyperactivity?  Barkley hypothesizes as to why having emotional control had been listed since the mid sixties and then was dropped.

He discusses parts of the brain that must be able to communicate with each other for someone to have self-awareness, self-restraint, motivation, emotional self-regulation, and the ability to interpret the emotional “coloring” of a situation.

He discusses how to tell if having poor emotional control is caused by AD/HD, or if it is caused by a mood disorder such as depression or anxiety.

He will tell us if financial problems are related more to having AD/HD or more to having a primary mood disorder.

Is using sheer willpower enough to stay in control of our emotions?

March 1st, “ADD and Loving It!”

Whether or not you are an adult with AD/HD, want to better understand how the symptoms can affect people’s lives and relationships, or want to separate myths from facts about AD/HD, this program is sure to hold your attention for an entire 55 minutes!

In the video, Patrick McKenna, (SNL), and his wife, Janis, fill out a checklist behavior rating scale as some interesting stories come to light!  As an example of impatience, Patrick said he goes out of his way to avoid getting stuck in traffic.  One time, when he got stuck, Janis said he got out and bought a car!   And how often have you moved to a different apartment within the same building?!   Find out what mistake people with ADD typically make when choosing a spouse.  In what situations do people with ADD outperform people who don’t have it?  How prevalent is ADD in Hollywood?

Learn from the experts on this all star cast:  Rick Green, Margaret Weiss, MD, PhD, Ed Hallowell (Driven to Distraction), Kate Kelly, author of I’m not Lazy, Stupid, or Crazy! and Thom Hartmann, radio talk show host and author of A Hunter in a Farmer’s World, to name a few!   Whether or not you love having AD/HD, or don’t even have it, please come and join our discussion!

If you just can’t wait, take a sneak peak at!

February 1st, 2011 ~ Cancelled due to the BIG BLIZZARD!

February 1st, 2011– The DVD, “ADD and Loving It!” has arrived!  Whether or not you are an adult with ADD (AD/HD), this program will help you better understand how ADD can affect people’s lives and relationships.  It separates fact from fiction regarding some common misunderstandings about ADD, and uses humor throughout as it discusses diagnosis and treatment.  It is hopeful, yet realistic, and is sure to entertain, no matter how short your attention span!

As Patrick McKenna, (of the Red and Green Show), and his wife, Janis, fill out a checklist behavior rating scale together, some interesting stories come to light!

  • When Patrick explained that he is so impatient that he goes way out of his way to avoid getting stuck in traffic, Janis added that once, when he didn’t, he got out to wait until the traffic cleared, and bought a car!

  • And how often have you moved to a different apartment in the same building because you got bored with the previous one?!   Find out how often Patrick has!

  • Find out what mistake people with ADD often make when choosing a spouse.

  • In what situations do people with ADD typically outperform people who don’t have ADD, according to Ned (Ed) Hallowell?

  • How prevalent would you guess ADD is in Hollywood?!

Between the laughs, learn from some of the best, with this all star cast:  Rick Green, Margaret Weiss, MD, PhD, Ed Hallowell (Driven to Distraction), Kate Kelly, author of I’m not Lazy, Stupid, or Crazy! and Thom Hartmann, radio talk show host and author of A Hunter in a Farmer’s World, to name just a few!   Whether or not you love having AD/HD, please bring your favorite “Valentine” and join the discussion that will follow this 55 minute program: “ADD and Loving It!”

You can also take a sneak peak at!

Wouldn’t you know!  This just in!  A BLIZZARD WARNING! According to recent weather reports, It appears that we could get up to 16 inches of snow Tuesday night!  If this remains the case, unless Calvin College cancels classes, we will still try to meet to have an interactive discussion.  If only a few people attend, we will postpone watching the DVD until our next meeting on March 1st.  We would not want people to make the effort to come and find no one there, –not if we can possibly avoid it!


January 4th, 2011~ CHADD Adult Group meeting on RESILIENCY: “A Good Day Is When Bad Things Don’t Happen–Revisited.” Sam Goldstein, Ph.D.

December 7th 2010 ~ “How Matt Morgan (Professional Wrestler) Wrestled With AD/HD Throughout His Life, and Beat It!”

November 2nd, 2010 ~ “It All ADDs Up: How AD/HD Will Save the World in 2012!” with Rick Manning

October 5, 2010 ~ “Paying Attention To Hormones” with Marjorie Taylor