Hi All: New to the site, found it while checking out IEP protocols. I was sucked in by this statement: "Chances are that if you are a parent that just found our site you probably aren't having a great parenting day." And how. Last night, I actually told the children that I couldn't stand the sounds of their voices anymore and that they needed to go away to the basement or their rooms. I tried very hard to give it that "it's not you, it's me" spin, but you know how it goes sometimes. We have our IEP meeting for Webster in two weeks. This is the meeting where we decide on the plan and put it in place for the first day of school. Forget the point that I've been after them since last January, after we'd gotten the diagnosis of Cerebral dysfunction - neurodevelopmental disorder with limbic dysregulation for our 10 y.o. son. Webster displays symptoms of ADD, AS, BiP, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), and a dozen other behaviors - he's just one big psychiatric stew. The base of the stew is that he's a great, sweet, funny kid, but all those psychiatric veggies in there make for a crowded plate. And now as we approach a new school year, our frustration with the school is so huge, I already have a stomach ache and a headache. I've heard all the war stories of other parents in our district and elsewhere. When parents in our district told me in January not to expect anything in place before the end of the year, I thought "Well, you have no idea how much of a b**ch I can be." To my surprise, that wasn't an effective strategy. In fact, I never got to that point, because you can't yell at the people who have the power to help you, but it is difficult to think of going into this next meeting NOT loaded for bear. There are so many protocols they want to use, so many matrices and state-specific **** they want to go through before we get to the things that will actually HELP Webster. At one point, they scrapped the behavior inventory sheet that his teacher and I had come up with, to switch to "their sheet," which had 80% less information on it, and the 20% that was there evaluated things like "safety" in math class? What? Like not poking himself in the eye with a ruler? There were no parameters for these scales of behavior, and yet at the end of the day he was rewarded or, more often, not rewarded for his daily behavior. Without anyone (parents, teachers, child) knowing what the parameters of any behavioral scale is, WTH? So these are the kinds of "evaluations" they want to go through before anything becomes remotely helpful. Did I mention we had an independent evaluation done last October? Full-on neuropsychologist evaluation, PLUS educational evaluation, outlining strategies for environmental changes, therapy, etc., and yet the school wants their own crack at it. And I get that, I really do, but they finally told us they wanted to do their own evaluation. 3 weeks before school ended for the year. In the meantime, no one understands that every single day is a WHOLE DAY for Webster. He is struggling every day to keep it together, and we are struggling everyday to either watch helplessly, help, or duck (every hour of the day is different). So this endless waiting and waiting and waiting is just plain mean. Complicating things, is that Webster has the IQ of a rocket scientist, scoring 99.9% on many tests. He's been up-leveled since kindergarten, and next year, in 5th grade, he will be going to the jr. high for 7th grade math. Then there are the tests where he scores 1%, on things like short-term memory, non-verbal stuff, etc. So the challenge for the school is to get him to the point where he is learning comfortably now, then be ready on the other side, when he shoots into space. They can figure out how to help kids on one side of the bell-curve and on the other side of the bell-curve, just not on both sides at once. Does it help or hurt that my background is in education? I have a master's in curriculum development and am currently unemployed. The unemployed part is financially way-beyond-inconvenient, but time-wise, it's a god-send. Between dealing with the time Nick needs and the time my dementia-plagued, assisted-living mom needs, I'm tapped out. Unfortunately for the school, the unemployment part also means I have all the time in the world. I have nothing but time to pay attention and foucus on how they are not helping very much or very quickly, and that even when they do help, it is not what I would consider to be adequate or appropriate from an educational standpoint. Not that I'm obsessing on them, but really, I am not good at waiting for something so critical. And how has this year affected the rest of the family? Little 7 y.o. daughter Petunia has, in the past year, gone through a remarkable amount of shifting. First, she was jealous at the amount of time spent on and with Webster, so she was cranky. Then she figured that her bad behavior could catch attention, too, so she was naughty. Then she thought that maybe it was her job to keep her Mommy happy (it's not), so she was a butt-kissing do-gooder. Lately , she is settling into a co-parenting role. She is the BetaMommy. I am of two minds on this, first, that it is not her job to help me parent, and I do want her to take on that responsibility and equality with me. Two - I could really use the help. Not that I'm not getting help from my husband, but he is not home All. Day. Long. like I am with the kids. Webster's therapist suggested to me that I may have PTSD, which means something in the past, not right now, and also trauma which doesn't ring true, but maybe Bulls**t covers it, so I might actually have RNBSSD. Meanwhile, BeauHunk husband has been recognizing certain behaviors (haven't we all?) and is thinking maybe he needs an evaluation. The cat seems to be doing okay. So my question to you, those who have gone before, is: what weapons can I bring to the IEP meeting? Do I need to memorize the code? Do I bring brownies? Do I need to be able to throw down legalistic statistics? Do I wear lots of perfume and a short skirt? Do I weep uncontrollably? How do I go into this meeting calmly without being loaded for bear?