Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Evaluation results

Yesterday I finally had the meeting at the local Autism clinic to go over the evaluation J had back in the beginning of September.  As I stated before I didn't bring J in for  the evaluation because I thought he would get a different diagnosis. I was simply trying to get a more thorough evaluation than he had the first time, and was hoping that the doctors would point me in the direction of some good resources, along with some recommendations for therapies etc. As I wrote about here I wasn't too impressed by the evaluation. I was at least hopeful that they would provide some useful information. Unfortunately that wasn't the case.
I didn't tell them about the diagnosis he already has, nor had I gone into specifics about the therapy he has been receiving. I wanted to get an unbiased opinion and see what they would recommend.
Well yesterday I received a diagnosis but not much else. They pretty much told me he has autism, handed me a printout from the Autism Speaks website, and referred me to a parent support group (which I am already a part of). I asked if they would recommend a specific type of therapy but they just said I should 

pick the one I feel would be the best fit. I asked if they could recommend an area pediatrician that is familiar with autism and they said that no one had ever asked them that before and they didn't have an answer for me. The write up they gave me on J was pretty generic and uninformative. If I hadn't already done a ton of research I would have been pretty lost at the end.
 I was very disappointed. I guess I was expecting more since this is a clinic that specializes in autism spectrum disorders. As far as they knew I hadn't done any research yet and the diagnosis was completely new to me. I anticipated/hoped that they would provide me with more information as well as a bit of a plan of action. In feel that they are doing parents a bit of a disservice and missing out on an opportunity to educate a whole population of parents. To think I first called to make an appointment back in April. If we hadn't lucked out and had our service coordinator find us the place to get a J's initial diagnosis we would have missed out on 7 months of therapy. And had we just gotten the diagnosis we would just be getting on the wait list for ABA. After of course I did my research, chose a therapy, and found the agency.
They DID however say that they feel J is on the milder end of the spectrum and that he should respond well to therapy. He lacks so many of the behavioral issues that often accompany autism, so in that we are fortunate. it is also great that we are catching this so early.
It is definitely not easy to sit in a room and have someone tell you your child has significant developmental delays and to have him receive a "label". But it doesn't change the awesomeness that is Jake. Having the paper in hand will help to keep the therapies coming. I will continue to advocate for him and to learn all I can to be best mom I can be to him. He is already making great strides and I have nothing but high hopes and expectations for him.


  1. I am very surprised that a clinic that specializes in ASD had almost no info to provide to you in seeking help. What a shame. If you weren't so proactive and involved, precious time would have been wasted. Look how far he's come since starting therapy! It makes me sad when I think of other parents who are on the same path, but are not as informed as you have become through all of your research. Sigh.

    With such a prevalence of children being diagnosed now, pediatricians and even autism clinics need to get on the ball with knowing what to look for (not just the "classic" signs), and they also need to provide information to parents on what to do AFTER the diagnosis. I feel us ASD moms are more informed than they are!

    I love that pic of him! :)

  2. I agree Mina - some of the professionals definitely need to step it up! And thanks - it's one of my fave pics of late :)