By Lisa Boester, ADHD Awareness Chair.
It is imperative that as coaches we serve as megaphones in our respective communities to spread the facts about ADHD. We are limited only by our imaginations and energy reserves. Because of the nature of our businesses, most of us are our own bosses. Therefore, we do not need a requisition, permission, or a board decision to create an ADHD Awareness event. We have the freedom to call upon any organization, company, or individual to disseminate the facts and tell our stories. As members of the ACO, we have access to the most current and accurate information, right on the ACO website (log in to access these member-only resources)!
I encourage you to mine the ACO website for resources to help you make your voice heard (and your coaching business known) during ADHD Awareness month.
Sandra Alletto is a coach with a personal story that reminds us of the importance of ADHD Awareness, and she was more than happy to share that story in the hope of inspiring coaches to start ADHD Awareness conversations in their own communities.
Here is an edited excerpt from Sandy’s LinkedIn post on June 27, 2015:
My MD told me people with ADHD don’t get advanced degrees and did not believe I had ADHD
by Sandra Alletto
I would like to tell you what I was told yesterday when I went to my new MD who got a degree in psychology from Stanford. I went to this new doc on my new insurance for a wellness check and to discuss my Adderall refills, which is always awkward because everyone is out to prove your some sort of Meth addict. So I am in my MD’s office here in Wisconsin, and he asks me why I think I have ADHD and need Adderall? Well, I thought he was kidding at first. Here I am, a 60 year old MSW sitting there in my hospital scrubs. So I explained that at 40 I was diagnosed with ADHD and asked if he would like my Psych to send information verifying that. He said, “I’ll get to that in a minute. I want to know more about what you know about ADHD. (Me? okay, so I am new…so I start explaining what I know and I am trying not to go on and on because let’s face it..I have been involved with ACO and CHADD, and was diagnosed in 1994, so besides getting my SCAC, I have a lot of experience, right?) Well, when I get done, this doctor says he is not convinced…(?) and wants me to do drug checks every week, to pee into a cup. I said, “Wait, what?” He said yeah, he said what really causes me to doubt you is your credentials–” Again dumbfounded I said besides being a credentialed ADHD coach, and having a background in teaching Special Education and having been an Advocate for ADA and 504 plans for many many kids in Michigan, I do know what I am talking about and I don’t appreciate what you are saying to me. He said,” Drug testing for people on Adderall is standard practice!” I said, “Where?” not in California, and it wasn’t in Michigan, so I am not sure what the heck you are talking about? He said at this point…AND THIS WAS THE LAST STRAW. HE SAID, “It is that you have an MSW and credentials that really clinches it for me because people with ADHD can’t earn advance degrees”. I said you graduated Stanford with that attitude about ADHD (the guy was young) I said I know many people with ADHD including myself who are capable and have advanced degrees including doctors! So I named off a FEW He said, “I never heard of any of them.”
This is Why What You Do for ADHD Awareness Matters
Maybe you have never had an experience such as Sandy’s, but there are plenty of people who have. You can be the difference for those individuals. Tell your story. Spread the facts. If you need help, use ACO’s ADHD Awareness presentation materials. If you have questions about these materials and/or are wondering about how to get involved, or have any questions at all, feel free to contact me at email@example.com.
Lisa Boester serves as chair of the ACO’s ADHD Awareness Committee.
She is also a full time coach for adults and college students. She works with small business clients, midlife adults desiring career change, those who need help with household management, and couples desiring a better relationship when one or both partners have ADHD. Contact her at the ACO at firstname.lastname@example.org, or privately at email@example.com or through her website at artoflifeindy.com