Barriers to Getting & Using Support for ADHD – 2021

with Evelyn Polk Green & Jessica McCabe


Learning to use supports to navigate ADHD and asking for help are difficult for many young people with ADHD, often until they’ve already begun to experience ‘failures’ or have otherwise ‘hit a wall.’ And yet, most parents want nothing more for their kids than for them to overcome all the difficult barriers they face so they can achieve a successful life as adults. Because ADHD is so complicated, its barriers are not always clear – and it turns out that asking for and accepting help may be the biggest obstacle of all! Of course, because that’s what parents want more than anything – for kids to be able to ask for help and then to accept it – it can create a challenging dynamic in families with ADHD.

In this thoughtful, heart-felt conversation, veteran ADHD educators, Evelyn Polk-Green & Jessica McCabe, talk about what it’s really like to get a handle on navigating ADHD and how we can find a path to get (and use) the support we need.


About Evelyn Polk Green

Evelyn Polk Green, MSEd, is a former board member and past president of both ADDA, the Attention Deficit Disorder Association and CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder). Evelyn is an adult with ADHD and the mother of two adult sons, both of whom also have ADHD. Active in ADHD and mental health advocacy for more than 25 years she has served as a leader representing the family voice in the ADHD and mental health communities in many capacities, including as a member of the Network on Children’s Mental Health Services funded by the MacArthur Foundation.

She has been focused on the challenges of ADHD in minority, poor and other underserved populations throughout her advocacy career. She is the recipient of several honors for her volunteer work in mental health and education, including the Beacon College Achieving Lifetime Vision and Excellence (ALiVE) Award for her advocacy work on behalf of children and adults with learning differences and ADHD.

Evelyn works as an administrator with the Chicago Public Schools, planning professional development programs for early childhood special education professionals and families. She holds bachelor and master’s degrees from National Louis University and a master’s degree from Northern Illinois University.

About Jessica McCabe
Jessica McCabe is the brain behind How to ADHD, a popular YouTube series that regularly releases easily accessible, research-based content providing a toolbox of strategies and deeply felt understanding and acceptance to ADHD brains, as well as resources and education for the people who love them. The channel focuses on teaching people how to be themselves and work with their brains, rather than against them, and has garnered the support of over half a million subscribers.
Jessica has a passion for sharing what she’s learned through her own struggles and experiences with ADHD; which she does in a unique style that spans the range from quirky and humorous, to deeply vulnerable and validating. She is well known for her 2017 Ted Talk, “This is What It’s Really Like to Have ADHD,” where she shares with the audience what it’s like to grow up with an ADHD brain and all the ups and downs that come with it. Her work has been featured by The New York Times, ADDitude Magazine,, Upworthy, and more.
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