Transitioning into Holidays and Vacations: Falling into the Black Abyss

Contributed by: Terry Matlen, ACSW

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times..."


Dickens pretty much sums up holidays and vacations for me. It can be great and it can be, well... less than great. In an earlier post, I talked about surviving the holidays. But today, I'd like to dive into a specific area that typically we only discuss in terms of our ADHD children, and that is....making transitions and coping with changes in routines. Or I should say, not coping with these changes very well.

Since those of us with ADHD are, for the most part, distractible and disorganized; we rely on external structure to make our days more manageable, as it can be incredibly difficult to handle our time intuitively. Thus, we rely on internalized routines, planners, Palm Pilots, checklists and the lot. So what happens when our days become unstructured, like when we're on vacation or have time off from school and work? What happens when our routines change? The truth is, many of us become miserable!

At holiday time, we are off work, rushing to parties, staying up late, and many of us are traveling. Everything goes out of whack; including our sleep and eating habits.

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