Friday, October 26, 2007

Vent after reading dev. ped's report

Today we got the report on G. from the developmental pediatrician. I'll have perspective in a day or too, but right now I'm hurt and mad. I'm actually pretty much over the hurt, and fully into the mad.

What I"m upset about:
After a few minutes of observing him she concludes:

G. is on a 16-month level in language (that might be right, but I'm annoyed anyway).

He makes little or no eye contact (not true).

He can request a cracker with a word and a sign.

He has low-set ears.
And so on.

Then there was a cut-and-paste section of suggestions:

- he should sit in the front of the classroom (he's not even three)

- parents should try to spend at least 30 minutes interacting with the child per day (I'm a stay-at-home mom!)

- use positive reinforecement (she gives examples such as saying "Good Job!" or giving a hug and a kiss)

I know the last section was just there because they must put it in every report, but I think most parents would be offended by the suggestion that they start saying "Good job". Yes, that's why we wait months to see a specialist! I'm supposed to be hugging my child? Why did no one tell me this before? No wonder he's autistic

The fact that she wants me to get him 25 hours of ABA, and then reminds me to spend thirty minutes a day with him pretty much sums up the difference in our philosophies. And I do believe in ABA, for some kids. And G. is getting some ABA, and probably will get more.

I'd be fine with the ABA recommendation if the rest of the report seemed more personalized, or even as if she had spent more than ten minutes on it.

We aren't planning to go back, although my husband doesn't want me to "burn any bridges", in case we need the clinic for referrals or letters of medical necessity in the future.

I plan to write something up,and then talk to the social worker, who seemed a little more concerned about us as individuals and as a family. I feel like I could go out and run five miles, or fire off a nasty email. I'll probably take the dog for a walk, then put on my pajamas and read my mystery.

Meanwhile, to counteract all of the above:

G. talked my ear off today, to the point where I said to my husband, "Let's pull B. out of speech therapy. We need one quiet one in the house!" (That was a joke, in case the developmental pediatrician ever reads this)

B. keeps trying to sing "Sing, sing a song" from Sesame St. He says "Siiiiiiinnng, dadee sooooooonnnng". It's very, very cute.


KAL said...

Well, that's crap. I'm angry for you. Did she seem this out-of-touch when you met with her? Wow. I wish you were up here, I'd send you to ours for a second opinion AND J and S could play with B and G while you waited. Seriously, though, I'm sorry you're feeling bad right now.

kristen said...

I'm also sorry you are feeling so bad, but I completely understand why!! We had a similar experience with our neurologist. It felt like one of those if-this-is-Tuesday-this-must-
be-Belgium scenarios.

We aren't going back either. I also wanted to write a letter, but decided to hold off in case I need a referral, though I can't imagine actually trusting this guy's judgment on anything.

Sorry you had to go through this. The thing that bugs me the most is how very common this experience is. What's wrong with our medical professionals?

Mom without a manual said...

I'm so sorry. And I totally understand your feelings right now. It is so frustrating. Most only seem to parrot what the textbooks said... and those books were from years ago and contained three sentences about autism. Some still act like it is us refrigerator moms who gave our kids autism. So yes, the "atta boy" and "occasional hug" comments are not that surprising. Frustrating but not surprising.

Sorry, don't mean to add to your anger. Hang in there! You are doing fabulous. Your boys are doing great. You are their mom. Question everything and follow your heart. You know what makes a difference in their lives. Don't let a person tell you otherwise just because they have "credentials". I was never one to question authority but somehow somewhere I became this color outside the lines person. It is scary but empowering all the same. Believe in yourself and fight for your kids. In other words, keep doing what you are doing!

Sorry for the long post! I just really want you to know that you are not alone! And that you have every right to be mad at a professional that you expected to be able to help you!

Angela said...

She must have just been pushing paperwork off her desk and not thinking. You have a right to get mad. Hope things get worked out.

burgiboogie said...

Wow, thanks for posting this, I have really been meaning to spend 30 min. of alone time with my son. I really needed that reminder... and was that "good job?" I think I can remember that one!! lol

Niksmom said...

Catching up on some blogs. Boy, you've been busy lately!

We've had similar experiences. When I've actually worked up the nerve to say something to another professional about it, they all tell me to remember it is but ONE snapshot in time by a person who DOESN'T see your child frequently and has no baseline for comparison other than a manual/textbook. Use the eval to help you get service you might need or want but trust your knowledge of your kids! They are doing great and you are a great mom. Keep THAT in your sights and move on to the next...

BTW, we've run in to that with MORE than one so-called specialist. Don't be afraid to fire a doctor. They are only as good as the reliability of their information and the relationhsip they are willing to establish with you and your kids. Clearly this lady just wasn't able to do that.
xxxx hugs

Sustenance Scout said...

1) Thanks so much for commenting on my blog re: common misunderstandings and autism.

2) Just reading your recent posts, especially this one, and your visitors' comments has taught me a great deal. I know parents of kids with autism don't like to be considered heroes and insist you're simply plugging through, but really, you're all amazing.

3) I love your son's version of that favorite Sesame Street song and will probably be humming that all day now. :)

Thanks!! K.