Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Stating the obvious

Neo is a really neat kid. I'm very proud to be her Mom.

Phebe is a very cute kid. Twirling in the Supercuts while waiting for her haircut entertained the other patrons immensely.

If you do not feed my son lunch, he is short tempered. There is data to support this conclusion.

Calling the parents two hours after lunch ended to say that he's out of control is really not that helpful, all you school professionals. Then trying to deflect blame onto the child because,well gee, the lunchroom had already closed and we couldn't figure out how to feed him does not calm the parents down in the least.

Using this episode as a demonstration that the aide that the Case Manager likes is better than the one currently assigned to Saul, because "Look, he didn't act up while SHE was working with him" really makes Suisan angry. (He was also being FED while she was working with him, you idiot.)

Must drink wine.


jmc said...

If you do not feed my son lunch, he is short tempered. There is data to support this conclusion.

This phenomenon is not limited to children; if I skip lunch (I usually don't eat breakfast), I am an uber-bitch by dinner time.

Angela James said...

I'm not really sure how you keep your sanity.

I wonder if things are this difficult for parents of children with special needs in most school districts, or if you just got lucky?

Suisan said...

From working with other Spec Ed parents in the Support Group, I can say that most parents are just this fed up.

Teachers now long for the days of "SD", which stood for "Single Disability", as these were usually reading difficulties. Now we have "MD", or (say it with me) "Multiply Disabled". Those kids have behavior issues -- their disabilities cause outbursts and behaviors that a non-disabled kid would get disciplined for. This is a very strange road. I do give my child consequences for misbehaving. Believe me.

BUT, you cannot get the child to stop acting up by yelling at them or shaming them in the moment. A non-disabled child, like Neo, is horribly embarrassed to think that she is causing a scene. A disabled child, especially one with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is often reacting to sensory input that the non-disabled adults in the room can ignore. Since they ignore it, their ability to empathize with the child is reduced.

A lot of this can be read as a plea from a parent of a willful child to just have everyone coddle him and placate him. That is not true. (In fact, my son gets aggressive with people who put on the "nicey-nice" attitude. I can't tell you how many times I've warned people of this. To no avail.)

We have rising rates of autism. California just released a draft report showing that from 2002-2007 total school enrollment increase 7%. During that same time period, children identified as being on the Austism Spectrum increased by something like 143%. (I have to go double check that statistic for accuracy.) BUT, what that shows is that with the same model there's a huge influx of kids who aren't behaving like the other kids, and some schools and staff are having a very difficult time understanding them.

Then, there's the added frustration that my child is truly a difficult kid. Even if I had everyone on my team, it would be a daily challenge to get him through the day.

When people work against his best interests though, my head explodes.