Life with ADHD has its ups and downs. One day it’s smooth sailing, and the next, it’s rough seas.
Sometimes you need support or a good laugh to make it through the day. Maybe you need someone who understands what you’re up against, an outlet for venting when frustrated, or strategies from others struggling with the condition.
That is precisely what Jennifer Jeppson, the founder of ADHD In The Family, does. Jennifer is a mental health advocate with ADHD in the Family and writes and records the Natural Living With Science blog.
Jennifer has decades of experience working with maternal health organizations, has been married for more than 25 years to a disabled vet with ADHD and mental illness, and is a parent to 8 biological children and one adopted child with different mental health issues ranging from ADHD to depression, and history of childhood trauma to fuel her passion for mental health advocacy and natural living.
We had the honor of interviewing Jennifer this week!
1) Describe how you came up with Natural Living With Science?
The longer I’ve been a parent, the more I’ve found myself searching for healthier ways to care for my family. I have a medical background and a strong sense of curiosity, which led me to research natural-based products and practices before deciding to use them for my family. Sharing the information I learned just seemed like the next step!
2) Do you have any specific goals for the rest of this year?
I’m currently really focused on Natural Living With Science and working on turning it into a weekly blog. I’m eager to get NLWS on a regular schedule and start interacting with everyone out there that are just like us. So many people want to live a healthier, more natural lifestyle and want to know the science that backs it up!
3) Why do you think people with ADHD often struggle so much?
The three most commonly recognized symptoms of ADHD are hyperactivity, inattention, and impulsivity, with another main symptom being hyperfocus. People dealing with these symptoms struggle with organization and time management; issues with any of those can make handling the responsibilities of school and adulthood challenging!
4) What is a misconception or misinformation the average person believes about ADHD?
The most common stereotype around ADHD is the image of young boys bouncing off the walls, overflowing with energy, and disrupting classrooms. While a percentage of those living with ADHD certainly are boys that struggle with focus and attention, there are many facets to ADHD; it affects people of all ages and genders in many different ways.
5) Any advice you can give a family living with ADHD?
People with ADHD often struggle with executive dysfunction. They may hyperfocus on a subject and not recognize when it’s time to move on. Or their attention may stray, bouncing from topic to topic and preventing them from completing a task. Planners, schedules, and timers can make a real difference in their day. Planners provide a place to organize thoughts and activities. Schedules clarify what needs doing and when, and timers are a reminder that it’s time to transition to the next item on the list.
6) Favorite resources for families new to the diagnosis of ADHD?
A mental health professional that has experience helping people navigate life with ADHD is one of the best resources a family can have. Unfortunately, mental health professionals aren’t accessible to everyone, so I suggest checking out the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry’s website. They have guides and information, video clips, and book recommendations that can be helpful for parents and children just starting their journey. You can also find local or national support groups; talking with others who have similar lived experiences can be a huge help!
To Learn More About Jennifer Jeppson: https://linktr.ee/adhdinthefamily