#086 Kelly Rosenbender: From Struggling Single Mom to Informed and Confident Advocate

fasd success show Oct 24, 2021
Are you a single parent? Working full time? Wondering how to effectively support your child with FASD and have hope for the future? If you are any or all those things, tune in as I chat with Kelly Rosenbender. She is a single mom working full time while raising her 13-year-old daughter. Despite getting an FASD diagnosis a few years ago, and referrals for services, she still felt judged, isolated and without the tools or knowledge, she needed to advocate.

In today’s episode she and I break down:  

  • Pre diagnosis parenting – learning about attachment, trauma and other conditions but yet those techniques were not working to stop the overwhelm and outbursts. 
  • Post diagnosis – despite relief and referrals how she still did not have the information and knowledge to be an effective advocate and felt judged, isolated and frustrated. 
  • What changed that provided her with the tools,...
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#085 Chandra and Jordan Smith: The Power of Same Page Parenting

fasd success show Oct 17, 2021

Previous guests have included moms and dads, but this is the first time we’ve had a couple appear together to talk about their journey as FASD Caregivers. I couldn’t think of a better couple than Chandra and Jordan as the first. 

Chandra and Jordan are parents to 6 children – two with an FASD diagnosis and one suspected. Like Angelene Bruce, our conversation was not intended to be a podcast. It was for a case study for our upcoming CKS workshop. Like Angelene, their story is filled with great lessons that will benefit many.

Before taking the CKS program, Chandra and Jordan admitted they were living at a level of desperation and constant stress. They questioned their parenting, had others question their parenting, and struggled to understand why their children were acting the way they did despite what they felt was a supportive home environment.

I feel as a mom you get this intuition. There were things with our boys that I was recognizing, not...

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#084 Angelene Bruce: Throwing FASD Stigma out the Window

fasd success show Oct 10, 2021

Her handle on Twitter is FASD Warrior Mum. I interviewed Angelene Bruce for her feedback on her experience taking my Caregiver Kickstart Coaching program.  As she told her story, as a birth mum, it became clear her insight and experiences needed to be shared with a larger audience. She is a warrior who is working to throw stigma against birth mums and FASD out the window. 

I felt immense guilt. I cut down … and did as much as I could do – so diet, sleep, exercise, prenatal vitamins. I made sure my prenatal care was as good as it could be. I want birth mums to know there are mitigating things we can do. My passion is for women that are dependent. But it can happen even at low levels of drinking. 

Angelene is honest and forthright about her past. We talk about her dependency on alcohol and her pregnancy but also her path to recovery and acceptance. Stops on that journey include:  

  • How her relationship with her son has evolved, what...
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#083 Angela Geddes FASD: A Complicated & Beautiful Brain

fasd success show Oct 02, 2021
In this episode of The FASD Success Show, I’m talking to a professional who has dedicated her career to understanding, advocating, and supporting families and individuals with FASD. So much so, she wrote her thesis on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, which she has just turned into a resource manual filled with not only general information on FASD but provides insights into building a more inclusive service delivery system. 
Angela Geddes CYW, BA (Psych), MSW, RSW. Angela has over 25 years of experience supporting individuals in a variety of settings. She is currently in private practice providing education, advocacy and direct support for individuals and families experiencing complex issues including the impact of PAE/FASD. Angela is also an active member of the FASD ONE Diagnostic Action Group, FASD ELMO, and Ontario FASD Action Network and involves herself in many different projects including recently writing a book,A...
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#082 Jo Garofalo: FASD The Hidden Disability

fasd success show Sep 25, 2021
One of the benefits of the work I do is I get to witness the incredible transformation of caregivers. Today’s guest, Jo Garofalo is a caregiver I have watched go from being alone and pushed in different directions (none of which worked) in advocating for her daughter to an informed advocate who has the information, knowledge, and confidence to move forward in getting the accommodations needed for her daughter’s success. 
Jo and her husband Robert have two children, one with FASD. For the past27they have produced music and documentary programming for television and DVD.They raise money& awareness for Adoption UK &for the orphanage where they adopted their son through their Voice in a Million project.  They decided they really wanted to do something more substantial in the UK, and so the documentary FASD The Hidden Disability was born. 
FASD is something...
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#081 Natalie and Cindy: How to Homeschool

fasd success show Sep 18, 2021
 Are you a homeschooler? Ever thought about homeschooling? What about after school is finished? Have you thought about what the future holds for your kids/teens/adults? This episode covers school and launching or transitioning our kids into adulthood.

 Natalie Vecchione and Cindy LaJoy are both homeschool moms, who realized their teens, with FASD, needed alternative homeschool paths for meaningful futures. Through entrepreneurship and apprenticeship, these moms prepared their teens with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) to move forward with confidence, hope, and a set of practical life and job skills.

Natalie Vecchione is an FASD parent advocate and homeschooling mom to two. Natalie turned her family’s unique challenges and journey with FASD from career reinventing into a calling when she and her husband co-founded FASD Hope in 2020. FASD Hope is a podcast, website, and a place for awareness, information, and inspiration for those people whose lives...

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#080 Dr Raja Mukherjee: What Happens When We Never Give Up on FASD

fasd success show Sep 12, 2021

Do you often feel alone as a caregiver? Like you are hitting a brick wall or blowing into the wind when trying to get professionals on board?  In this episode, you will hear that sometimes professionals experience the same. The last time I spoke to today’s guest, Dr. Raja Mukherjee, was five years ago. There was next to nothing for FASD in the United Kingdom. Today I check in to find out where they are now. 

Dr. Mukherjee started the first NHS-based specialist Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders behavioural clinic and since then has seen hundreds of cases for a specialist second opinion. 

He completed his Ph.D. in Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in 2014. He has also acted as an invited advisor to the BMA board of science, The Department of Health, and the World Health Organisation about FASD. Dr. Mukherjee also gave evidence to the first All Party Parliamentary Group on FASD at the House...
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#079 Audrey McFarlane: FASD Month, Advocacy and Strategies

fasd success show Sep 04, 2021


I love when we bring back guests for an update! I love it, even more, when we have breaking news! More on that later. My guest today, Audrey McFarlane, was my first guest back in January 2020. That episode is in the Top 3 of most listened. It isn’t surprising because she is the Executive Director of the Canada FASD Research Network. Audrey was also one of the founders of the Lakeland Centre for FASD, which in my opinion, is one of the best FASD organizations on the planet.  


Audrey has her finger on the pulse of what is happening not only in Canada but around the world. In this episode we talk about advocacy in other parts of the planet, get an update on what CanFASD has been up to since she was last on, as well as details on: 

  • CanFASD’s new membership program (and...
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#078 Emmaus Holder: An Epic FASD Journey Across America

fasd success show Aug 28, 2021


What is the craziest thing you have heard someone doing to raise awareness about FASD? How about riding across America by yourself, relying on the hospitality of strangers to feed you, give you a bed for the night and talk about FASD. That’s exactly what my guest today, Emmaus Holder, did. Not so crazy though, it was more an epic adventure or quest.  




Emmaus Holder is a student at UNC Chapel Hill studying Sociology and Music. He is the oldest of five and has two brothers with FASD. He enjoys music and playing any instrument he can get his hands on, even taking a set of harmonicas on his bike trip. After college, Emmaus hopes to study sociology or psychology, do more research, and teach about topics such as the social and emotional difficulties tied to psychological struggles such as FASD. 

I wanted to do a cycling tour and as the idea started to build, I wanted to put a purpose behind...

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#077 The importance of an FASD community

fasd success show Aug 22, 2021

Today’s episode is a little different. You may know about our free Facebook group called the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Caregiver Success Support Group. Well, a group is only as successful as it is because of the moderators. They provide support for group members and maintain a safe atmosphere.

I thought it might be fun for listeners to “meet the mods” and hear a little bit about them, their families, and their thoughts on the importance of community.

We have four moderators: Laurie Anderson, Alex Duthie, Heather Flynn and Debbie Raymond.

As with all guests, I ask about their origin story. You will also find out:

  • who they support;
  • some of the symptoms of the disability that present in their loved ones; and
  • interventions or accommodations they use to support their success.

You will also learn (if you didn’t already know):

  • What role they play in the group;
  • The skills they bring as a moderator; and
  • Their thoughts on the importance of...
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