Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) son tested: FINALLY at grade level

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by MidwestMom, Feb 16, 2007.

  1. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I guess all those years of interventions paid off!!! His reading skills, including comprehension, are at grade level as are his math skills. This was a kid they told us had an IQ of 75 and would always be behind. I think all those medications created cognitive dulling in him. Some kids NEED medications--I'm not knocking them at all--but he didn't and, once off of them, he took off in every way. His Special Education teacher was beaming when she told me the results. We have an IEP coming up with plans for more mainstreaming. I can't believe this is the same kid who had been on thirteen different medications and was misdiagnosed with ADHD and bipolar. The teacher also told me he's friendly at school (a first) and that he talks almost too much. Yeah, he still has Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)--it never goes away--but it can sure improve. Just checking in to give others hope. Also, be certain that your ADHD or bipolar kid doesn't really have Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). See a neuropsychologist. Have a good day :smile:
  2. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    MWM, thanks for sharing your good news. Way To Go, Lucas (and you, of course)!!!
  3. KateM

    KateM Member

    That is great news, Midwest Mom! :bravo:
  4. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Way To Go!difficult child. I am so glad for your son MWM. It's wonderful that he is at grade level. It can only progress from here. :bravo:
  5. TexasTornado

    TexasTornado New Member

    This is wonderful to hear!!!!
    Your post has given me hope for my difficult child-Im dealing with similar issues with the IQ-and your post lifted me up today.
    Its so nice to hear how other difficult children are progressing and doing so well:)
    Way to go Lucas!!!
  6. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    I am very glad for you and your son... what a nice achievement for all of you. It is great to know hard work does do some good. (((BRAVO)))
  7. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    Awesome! :bravo:
  8. amy4129

    amy4129 New Member

    Way To Go!!!!!
    So nice to read a great update.
  9. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    :bravo:Fantastic news!
  10. jannie

    jannie trying to survive....

    Great News !!!! :bravo:
  11. Janna

    Janna New Member

    That's great, MWM.

    I think the interventions are important, too, with any type of disorder. Even though Dylan's mild on the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) thing, his learning was severely halted through the last couple of years because of that and the BiPolar (BP). The emotional support classroom has helped him alot with learning how to behave in the classroom and school. Although, I'm really pushing for him to mainstream, still a little early, but I think he can do it. I knew Lucas could, too!!!

    Good for you both!

  12. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Awesome news! Thanks for sharing!
  13. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    That's really good news. How old was he when he scored 75? I think difficult child 3's first test (when he was 4) scored that low, or lower. They never told us the score.

    The thing is, I've said it before and I'll keep on saying it - IQ tests are not intended to measure kids who are very different. Really high scores and really low scores are likely to be inaccurate. And with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids, especially when it's not well managed (especially when they're younger) it's too easy for the testing procedure to simply not be able to accurately measure their true ability. I remember difficult child 3 was also failed on problem solving (mazes) when he STILL has trouble holding a pencil. They score a fail for each time the pencil mark crosses a line - and for difficult child 3, he hasn't got the coordination to not cross a line accidentally. But he DOES know how to solve a maze really well. He just can't draw! And drawing is not an IQ thing (clearly- because his last score, equally meaningless in my opinion, was 145. And he STILL can't draw!).

    Kids with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) are often very bright, but they learn in different ways. If they are permitted to have access to what they need in order to learn, they will do well. If they are forced to learn in the same way as everyone else they often do badly and their needs go unrecognised.

    You recognised what he needed and fought to make sure he had access to it. That is exactly what these kids need - Warrior Mums like us!

  14. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    Thanks, all. Marguarite, Lucas was repeatedly tested at school at 75. I didn't put a whole lot of stock in it because I know that kids that are different do poorly on IQ tests, but because Lucas was so unable to express himself and did so poorly when left alone mainstreamed (two years in Catholic School), I had no idea what he could really do. He WAS behind. The neuropsychologist who tested him for twelve hours and came up with his Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified diagnosis. tested his IQ at 107, which I thought was more accurate. I do think the drugs caused cognitive dulling, at least with Lucas. He'd been on so many, including heavy hitters like Depakote and Lithium, which both seemed to slow him down. When your kid has to take medications, you put up with it--I thought he needed medications. As soon as he combined Special Education with drug weaning, he started picking up quickly. This year I'm getting positives on his socializing too! Look, the kid will never be a social butterfly. He has Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). He'd rather be alone when he's home. In fact, he'll make up "my Mom won't let me play" if somebody comes over. But at least in school he can interact with kids and is not ostracized by his peers. He loves to help his lesser functioning classmates, and is almost mainstreamed. My goal, however, is to keep him on track with his Special Education teacher, even if he only sees her for one period. In the US, at age 14, they start a "life plan" for the child. While I used to think Lucas would need a group home, I now think he can go to tech school (which is Wisconsin's equivalent of Junior College). He'll need supports, but he can probably get a two year degree in maybe auto mechanices (my hub can help--he's a mechanic). If he can't make it, well, he can try. I'm pretty sure he'll still need assisted living in his own apartment because he does need reminders to bathe and change his clothes and has been known to forget the stove is on, etc. That's a big step from where we started out with him as such a non-functional toddler who bit himself and bit us and screamed and couldn't speak. I have to also give kudos to the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) interventions that he got since infancy. He was a foster child at first and, since he was born with drugs in his sysem, they considered him "at risk" and he started intensive interventions right off the bat. Even without an Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) diagnosis., which came later (thirteen medications later...grrrrrr...), he got the right sort of interventions for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). I am very proud of this kid. Yes, he's different. We see this at home, he hides it in public, but he's different in a good way, and he's worked very hard. Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids have so much hope. This is one disorder that can really improve if the professionals diagnose it right and if the child gets interventions. Lucas seemed to "wake up" one I wanted to share, not to brag, but to give others with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids hope. Lucas does NOT have Aspergers, yet he is still doing well. Hugs to all.
  15. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    It's good to look back and see where they've come from, and how far. And this is yet another good argument for NOT expecting inclusion to always be the best way to go - it's still a huge battle for us in Australia. We have welfare and personal rights groups who INSIST that inclusion can be their only aim. One mob I've been talking to never really made that clear. I'd been dealing with them over the school's repeated failure to keep difficult child 3 safe and give him access to the educational material he needed. Then I raised the subject of my Special Education class which I finally managed to get up and running - these people thought I wanted it stopped! They couldn't understand WHY I would push for this sort of segregation. "Because these kids NEED to be segregated, they can't cope with inclusion right now," I answered. "Given time, if integration is appropriate this is the fastest way to get them there appropriately, with it suiting their needs. The only way to integrate kids like this is for EVERY class to be a Special Education class, and our country simply can't afford that."
    They don't understand, they don't want to understand.

    MWM, we've come an amazing distance with difficult child 3 as well. People say to us, "But of course, he's not really autistic, is he? This is Asperger's". But like you, this isn't Asperger's. difficult child 3 scores moderate on the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) scale and had significant language delay. he is still having problems with receptive and expressive language but now it's subtle and mostly confined to aural input/output. Improving amazingly all the time. Now he wants to educate adults who have to teach kids on the spectrum. He asked how he could help them understand what it's like to be autistic. And as he becomes more self-aware, he's taking more control over his problems too. He asked today about medications for anxiety. Frankly, he doesn't do well on most anti-anxiety medications, but it opens the door a bit wider to teaching him some relaxation techniques and getting him back into cognitive behaviour therapy (which an autistic kid shouldn't be able to comprehend).

    Some medications have worked for my kids, but not others. Also, we haven't had the problems you've had with really wrong labels which have done more harm by delaying the real help. We didn't get officially started until pre-school, but we've been working on difficult child 3 for years. We can't afford most interventions, we do a lot of it ourselves. We read up on ABA but no way could we implement it. We've just got into his head and given him what seems to work for him. Nothing more. Lots of photo albums for him, with stories about him including photos. It helped him learn his basic data, so he could always tell a policeman his phone number or address. Our Rain Boy. And he has now watched the end of "Rain Man" and found it very interesting and helpful.

    When I was a kid I read about autism in "Readers Digest". It really concerned me but I was glad it was so rare - I could cope with a blind kid, I thought. I could cope with a deaf child, but there was no way I would ever cope with having an autistic child. Luckily, given the incidence back then, this was not likely. An autistic child would have to be institutionalised, my feelings wouldn't come into it. These kids don't think, they don't feel, they barely exist.

    Oh boy, did they get THAT wrong!

    MWM, it's not only our boys who have come a long way, it's understanding of autism in general.

    There IS hope. Bucketloads of it. Oceans of it. A universe of it. Our autistic kids can do well because we can show them the way. We're all learning - the kids, us, the world. But it's the kids and how well they can do that is leading the way.

    I see ... a future in Information Technology. Data Analysis. Computer forensics. Lots of things.

  16. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    I definitely think our kids need social skills and life skills as much as arithmetic, and I don't want Lucas to ever be without the continuing reminders of what he needs to do to exist in this world. He may never totally "get" it. I have no fantasy of a cure--he is still different, but he is more able to figure out the world than he used to be. My goal is neither total mainstreaming (what's the point?) or total independence as an adult. I see nothing wrong with assisted living. He is always going to have some trouble understanding certain things that others "get." My particular child would never think to "spread the word" about autism and barely asks questions about it--doesn't seem interested. And in his room, where nobody can see him, he does his Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) thang. I can hear him talking to the the bed as he bounces up and down on it, etc. When he comes out of that room, he acts "typical." He knows how, he just NEEDS to be Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) at times. Yes, he was terribly misdiagnosed. I understand the ADHD because, when he was young, he hung from the rafters. Strangely, he is now very sedate. However, I don't "get" the bipolar diagnosis. The child has no moodswings. He's mellow. He doesn't rage. He's not defiant. I think his strangeness steered the psychiatrist wrong. I believe bipolar is often diagnosed when a child is on the Spectrum. I also, at one time, thought autism meant a hopeless life. It doesn't.