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CHADD WOW Support Group for Mothers/Grandmothers

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January 8, 2022 | 6:30 pm

ADHD Holiday Season Survival Guide: A Member's Forum

Speaker(s): Kathy Whelan-Gioia, M.S., M.Ed., Educational Advocate

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"ADHD Holiday Season Survival Guide." will be the topic of our Forum Discussion. We all looked forward to the holidays. Our children are home from school, families get together, loved ones and relatives and friends visit.  There is lots of leisure time and we have more free time from work and school. “Tis the season to be jolly…,” …but what if your family also lives with ADHD. Parents of children with ADHD, probably feel less “jolly” and more dread at the thought of their children having so much unstructured time. 

Parents of ADHD children may also have ADHD and as a result, the Holidays bring feelings of being overwhelmed, irritable and short tempered, rather than happy and jolly and merry. Relatives may also not get along with each other. Clearly Holiday time can be a disruptive time without well established and familiar daily routines for the ADHD-er.  

Instead of feeling happy and relaxed, there is more anxiety provoking activities during the holidays. Mailing holiday cards can be time consuming and demanding. Gift buying, wrapping and delivery adds tension, worry and anxiety. The holidays for ADHD families could be rather chaotic, stressful, anxiety-provoking, with moments of boredom and depression mixed in.

The Holidays are over...What went well with your Holidays with your families? What won’t you do again? Do you have a new Holidays mantra? Name one new lesson you learned and want to share with the group. Let’s share our thoughts during this “Open Members” forum on how we survived the holiday demands. What strategies did you use to reduce tension, anxiety, over-stimulation, etc. What was your PLAN?


Kathy Whelan-Gioia, M.S., M.Ed., is an Educational Advocate and a recent retiree from the State of California, as a Diagnostic Educational Specialist on the Transdisciplinary Assessment Team at the Diagnostic Center, Southern California. Kathy holds a M.S. in Elementary Education and M.Ed in Special Education. Kathy has been a Special Day Class teacher, Resource Specialist, Special Education Mentor and a Support Provider for Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment Program (BTSA). Kathy has also taught Teacher Education courses at the graduate level.  Kathy has extensive experience developing successful educational programs for students with a variety of disabilities from pre-school age to young adulthood and specializes in the area of Transition issues and positive secondary outcomes for all students. Kathy is a member of the Association of Ed.Therapist/Professional Member, the Association of Resource Specialists (CARS), and of the Coalition of Parent, Professionals and Attorneys (COPA).


Contact: Carolyn Kelly;  Email:



2020 Virtual International Conference on ADHD

November 5-7