Pushing for social skills group.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Shari, Aug 18, 2008.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    difficult child 2 saw the behavior therapist this morning. He was sick at the last appointment, so I updated her on recent events. I told her I didn't think the psychiatrist was willing to dismiss the possiblity of a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) diagnosis, despite the neuropsyche report. She jumped in quite quickly and agreed, neither was she willing to dismiss it. The neuropsyche evaluation is very research based and very "in the box" oriented - she says difficult child can function "in the box", but if they saw him outside that clinic, she thinks even they would change their minds. She just sees too much. She, again, really wished we could get him into a social skills group. She feels he would benefit and greatly needs it.
    I am sick and tired of being bounced around between these people. The psychiatric and BT have ideas to try (social skills group, language therapy) that are not being tried because DevPed doesn't agree, and her office happens to be in the building where these services would be offered. I came a hair'd width from parking my butt in her waiting room this morning and demanding either a valid reason why we can't try it, or to try it.
    Better judgement stopped me, but I am placing calls now asking for written letters from BT, psyche, and the in-home, individually. I don't think I will have any trouble getting them. Then I plan to schedule an appointment with DevPed and give her the letters and say "let's talk".
    I'm dangling dangerously close to the frayed ends of my rope, and my son needs help. difficult child's bio dad lives in a barn besides his mom and dad's house. His mom and dad take care of him. He is employed right now, but he has not stayed at the same job for more than 5 months in the past 5 years. He's spent most of the time unemployed. He is on probation right now for felony assault charges - this is his 5th offense.
    difficult child 1 just came back on his leave. He's been in trouble in the military for alcohol already. He came back and married a girl he hasn't seen in 3 years. Initially he wanted more money when he got deployed. Then he thought she was preg with some other guy's kid. He lost his wallet and cell phone in the airport on the way cause he was smashed and beligerant going thru security and forgot them after he got searched. They got married and he slammed a 27 ounce double-alcohol margarita, then drove to his new wife's apartment, stopping by the liquor store on the way, in the middle if a crowd heading to a big-name concert in town, also, that night (aka LOTS O' POLICE). Open containers all the way. He forgot the marriage license when he left.
    I will not settle for "he'll grow out of this" and I guess I'm gettin' p*ssed, and maybe its time.
    So, any advice or suggestions appreciated. I won't go in guns a blazin', but I guess I am prepared to argue this matter at this point.
  2. Loving Abbey 2

    Loving Abbey 2 Not really a Newbie

    Have you asked the school for the social skills group? School is where most socialization happens so with the right SW or therapist it can be very effective.
  3. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    They don't have anything. We're a very small district.
  4. OpenWindow

    OpenWindow Active Member

    Our school didn't have a social skills group, but we discussed it in one of his IEP meetings and we were able to arrange with the counselor to go into the classroom and teach social skills to the whole class. They did it about once a week, and started out only in difficult child's class. It went so well, they expanded it to all the classes in that grade the next year. Not as good as a real social skills group, but good in other ways for difficult child and it also helped the other kids in his class understand him a little better, without singling him out.

    You can borrow my armor when you go in to DevPed and argue for her to at least try it. Hopefully, letters from the other professionals will do the trick.

  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I think that you are wise to realize weegfg won't "grow out of it" and that it is time to push for the social skills group. Is the dev pediatrician the person who runs the social skills group? Is it funded by insurance or any medicare children's insurance? IF this is the case, and the other professionals put Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified or other autism spectrum diagnosis on their billing sheets and dev pediatrician keeps him out because HE doesn't think so, then he could, maybe lose the medicare approval if you push it? Just out on a limb, but autism and autistic spectrum disorders are the "hot topic" children's medical disorder. So maybe push this, with letters from the other docs working with you, to the state level??

    Does your state have an autism advocacy group? My backwards state has one at the state level - I only know because they called me for info on Aspergers. This group says it is a push on the FED level that got them funded on the state level. Use this against the dev pediatrician, or get the other docs to organize a different social skills group?

    I know our fairly largish town/small city does not have any social skills groups. We have guidance offered as a class in teh schools, but NO social skills groups offered by any therapist or other professional in town. so you are not alone. But push your other docs to get one going. The benefits, billings wise, are huge for them.

    I am sorry difficult child 1 went ahead with the marriage. I doubt the military will go ahead and pay on the higher level - or if they do and then with-in a certain # of years difficult child 1 gets a divorce, he has to pay back the extra. Or it used to be this way. If difficult child 1 is thrown out of the military, will he come to his dads/grandparents, or to your home, or is there a plan at all? Have you thought about how that would impact your other kids?? YOU???

    The military does have a lot of resources for alcoholism, is that part of what you think is going on with difficult child 1? Any idea if it is partially a result of self-medicating for another issue? What would your best guess be?

    Whatever happens, it is clear you love ALL the kids a lot. They are lucky to have you, so take care of YOU for them.

  6. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    We do have an advocacy group at the state level. I have not contacted them, but I will put that on the list. One of wee difficult child's former Occupational Therapist (OT)'s may be starting a social skills group, too, I just found out. Until then, tho, I'm pushing DevPed. The problem is that she works in the building where they recently built the "autism center". Any happenings there will be under her nose, so to speak. I beleive wee difficult child still has either a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) or Aspergers diagnosis from the psyche or BT - we'll push that issue if we need to.

    Yes, difficult child 1 got married. I was there, with smiles and bells on, and I pray it works, but... His behavior didn't just scream success to me. Time will tell. If he does end up having to come back home, he is welcome here, but there will be strict rules, and he knows this. Part of those rules may involve medication/treatment, just depends on the time/situation. As for the alcohol, my "best guess" is part of it is to boost his self esteem, part of it is self medicating, and part of it is, in my best guess, his gene pool. He's substantially part Native American, his bio mom is an alcoholic and drug addict, his bio dad does not addict to substances, but to things like sex and gambling - not sure what its called, but he's described as an "addictive personality" - plus whatever else his dad has going on - narcissism is suspected. So yes, there is a plan. It will have to be tweaked to fit the time and circumstances, but it won't be a "play it by ear when you get here" kinda thing. I'm not counting him out yet, but I don't think we can call it success yet, either. He's been in a year, has been on suicide watch at least once, in trouble for self-mutilating at least once, and in trouble with alcohol. I pray if he actually gets a house off the base, that it doesn't immediately go south.