In 2000, one of my students, age 5, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. I was working in the Early Years Program at the time as was a certified Developmental Service Worker which gave me the knowledge and specialty of working with children and youth with Developmental Delays and Learning Disabilities. I would do a lot of one-on-one work with the identified children
One boy, age five, with an absolute angelic face and a smile that would brighten the world, came in each morning glowing and happy, but if something or someone upset him this would result in a full blown rage, physical attacks, crying episodes (sobbing actually), laughing really out loud and he was very smart.
I tried every strategy that I had learned since I had graduated in 1990 and previous methods that had worked on other students on how to deescalate, get him back on task, removing him from the classroom and after the the angry tears were gone and a good blowing of the nose, we would try again.
Eventually the parents and him relocated to another city but the following year they returned for a visit. Mom came into the classroom with him, and was very happy actually, to announce that her son had been reassessed with a new diagnosis of bipolar disorder.
Yes, he was now medicated, but he could now function "normally" within a classroom setting, and maintain a pleasant conversation. To me, he looked so comfortable in his skin.
The moral of the story, if you don't think that you or your loved one has received an accurate diagnosis, it is in your right to seek another one!
Seeing a tormented little boy is heartbreaking for all those involved. Get the right diagnosis so they can start a new life and with the hopes they will enjoy it to the fullest!
Laura Marchildon will blog honest and true posts about her real life experiences.