Thursday, October 22, 2009

psychiatry and the kids

Yesterday we had an appointment with his psychiatrist for our autistic son, but we had to cancel it.
He wasn't well and I was clearly ill.

It didn't matter a lot, because I already scheduled an appointment for the beginning of november.

Today I dragged myself out of bed and got my third son and his dad in the bus in time. Don't ask me how.

My son would receive the diagnosis whether he has autism or not.
His father took a day off especially for this.

We had to wait half an hour before we were called.
And then his father and I were seated behind the one way screen and son didn't receive his diagnosis, but was interviewed again.
I knew he was hard to diagnose, I still know.

I would diagnose him with ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorder and developmental delay. Possible even obsessive compulsive disorder.

It was fun to see a diagnostic session the way I've learned it, and the way I've taught it.
I could use the tape for first year students to score what kinds of questions were asked, and, alas, to point out where things went wrong.

To me a daignostic session is all about the expression of the client. Allowing him to tell as much as possible without me witholding the client or without adding value to what is said.

When my son told he was sad because his brother went to live at his own apartment, it was asked where he went to.
"To the other side of the bridge."
"Oh but that is soo far...."

In my teaching time I would have pointed this out as lack of respect for the feelings of the client, especially because the psychiatrist went on with a few other sentences that way, and my student would have to do the interview again.
Now I was just mom, watching the professor make the mistakes. And I felt sad for my son that he feels so deep about his brother leaving home.

Yesterday we had a talk about it.
He misses doing things together, just walking to him and exchange a few words, the small talk in the kitchen.
All he has left at home is a classic autistic brother who does nothing else than complaining 90% of the time and his 5 year younger sisters.

The longer the interview lasted to more clear it was we wouldn't get the diagnosis.
After an hour there wasn't even time to sit together, but in the hallway we decided to get the prescriptions from our family physician, and we were told the diagnosis would be send to us.
It was indeed very hard to come to a final diagnosis.

Another morning spend with something that wasn't worthwhile.
When we would have been called that they only needed our son he could have gone there by himself.
When they would have talked to us about the problems with the diagnosis, I could have helped them.

Well, I still feel a bit nauseated and I have to decide whether to take the regular flu shot tomorrow or next week.

I won't take the shot for the mexican flu, even though I'm part of the risk groups.


  1. It sounds like you're having a really frustrating time with these "experts"! Oh and I don't blame you not taking the H1N1 vaccine, I'm not either and I'm not having my son have it, he's in one of the risk groups too. I've heard some really scary things about it, don't know about where you are but here in the US the vaccine was pushed through the approval process with no safety testing whatsoever, and one of the manufacturers is using an additive (referred to as an "adjuvant") that was denied approval by the FDA because it's not considered safe. Personally I think a lot of the fear over H1N1 is media hype and pressure from the companies manufacturing the vaccine. It's been reported here that some hospitals aren't even bothering to test for the virus any more, they're classifying all respiratory illnesses that come in as swine flu! I think that's pretty stupid, it just inflates the reported spread of it and gets people more scared.

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