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    Anxiety...

    Hi!

    We have been struggling with my son for years and finally, today at our regular Peds appointment we may have some "answers". I walked in expecting her to just hand out "ADHD". However, she said she does not believe it is ADHD (he actually has beautiful handwriting and she said kids with ADHD don't have good handwriting - I'm wondering if that is a pretty hard fact?).

    She believes all of his struggles come from "just" anxiety. I am not sure why I am struggling with this. I definitely thought something was off with him. (she even mentioned that in our near 7 years together that she has always noticed a difference in him between my girls) We talked about his sensory struggles, food issues, sleep struggles, tantrums, etc. She is recommending a low dose of Zoloft, and possibly ABA therapy. (her staff is investigating how to make this happen). Has anyone ever been able to do this without an autism diagnosis? She thinks he needs more than "just OT" and thought this might be the best combination to help him. (she did also mention possibly counseling)

    I also feel like people are opposed to ABA, but I'm not sure why. I'd love to hear any pros and cons.

    I feel like I am looking for "advice" but I'm not even sure at this point what I need. I was really not prepared for the conversation we had.

    I am feeling weird about having him in SC2 now. I suspect he actually has above average intelligence, but it is a struggle every day to do school. Also, If I give him a list of CVC words, he is not reading them with 100% accuracy. (we have been working on them all summer) He still mixes up b and d. Am I shortchanging him? I do feel SC2 will benefit him, but I don't want to let "my" anxiety hold him back either. I own both SC2 and MP1, so, the struggle is real.
    Last edited by howiecram; 08-07-2018, 10:29 AM.
    Christine

    (2022/2023)
    DD1 8/23/09 -Mix of MP 6/7
    DS2 9/1/11 - Mix of SC 7/8 and SC 9/10 (R&S 5, FFL)
    DD3 2/9/13 -SC 5/6

    Previous Years
    DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4, Mix of MP3/4, Mix MP5/6
    DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, AAR/Storytime Treasures), CLE Math, Mix of MP3/4, MP5 (literature mix of SC 7/8/MP5)
    DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK, AAR), MP1, MP2

    #2
    Re: Anxiety...

    Does anyone have any idea what is causing the anxiety? My son had severe anxiety. It was so severe as an infant and toddler that he lived in a state of constant anxiety, was mute, and would become catatonic when stressed. His was caused by trauma (the trauma of going from his foster family to our family). We saw it happen before our eyes, but we didn't know what we were seeing. The trauma caused primitive reflexes (especially Fear Paralysis and Moro) to re-emerge. Traditional medicine wanted to treat the symptoms (anxiety and mutism) without addressing the root cause. He was completely healed of his anxiety through Neurodevelopmental Therapy and Reflex Integration Therapy. That is not to say that is your child's issue at all or that either of these therapies would work for your child. My point is only that finding out the reason for our son's anxiety was key to treating it. Instead of putting a Band-Aid on it and only treating symptoms, we treated the root issue. I'm not anti-traditional medicine (I'm an RN, and we see traditional doctors). However, it can be vary narrow in focus and treatment...often wanting to throw meds at things instead of getting to the root of them. I'm also not saying that meds are bad or never necessary, because they often are. But, I wanted to explore all our options before putting my son on meds. If we had just explored traditional medicine, he would likely have been placed on meds as an infant and would probably still be on said meds. But, he was cured and is anxiety free without the use of any meds. I'm sorry that I cannot be of more help. I just wanted to relate our experience with anxiety and addressing the cause of it in case it was even a tiny bit helpful.
    Cheryl, mom to:

    ds 26, graduated
    ds 25, graduated
    dd 11th Grade
    dd 8th Grade
    ds 6th Grade

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Anxiety...

      Hi, Christine. Is she a developmental pediatrician? Did she rule out ADHD, and if so, how? Other than his nice handwriting, which you have worked on more than most who bring children to her office, did she mention anything else that led her to think he does not have ADHD?

      Anxiety, Zoloft, and ABA -- Interesting!

      Some are opposed to ABA philosophically because it has behaviorist roots. Others oppose it when it is presented as a cure-all. But some find it beneficial, if handled correctly and with a proper understanding that the child is a human being and not a mere Pavlovian response. In such circumstances, the incremental approach to analyzing behavior can be useful. What triggers it? What are we doing to make it worse? How might we respond better or, best of all, prevent it? Taken as one part of the approach, and with someone who is likeminded with you, this might be something you would find very practical. If insurance covers and you have time to explore, this could be a good time in his life to try. You do not need to commit to extraordinary amounts of time. You could say that you might like to explore it as a possibility and evaluate as you go.

      From the beginning here, too, we have heard that your son is a sensitive child -- sensitive to foods, sleep issues, schedule changes -- so if you trust your pediatrician you might see where her recommendations lead.

      As you do, consider family history. Any anxious people on either side? As in an earlier post on a related topic, seeing what helps that person (or people) may be helpful for your son. More down time? More "space" between demands? Clear expectations? A lightened workload? More vegetables/greens? More sunshine or outdoor exercise? Ask around or observe extended family for insights. Avoiding caffeine will now be more important than ever. We see this for my son too. Even at 23, if he is very tired before work we might give him a weak cup of green tea, but nothing strong. At his previous work he had access to coffee and lots of sugar, and anxiety abounded. He now says he feels MUCH better avoiding caffeine.


      Whether ADHD, anxiety, or more, your son has already been helped by many of the things you have already discovered! We talked about his need for SC, despite the absence of obvious learning difficulties, and this confirms that, at the very least, there are "differences" that make this need more clear.


      One thing is true, no matter what: Your little guy is adorable, especially when he is all dressed up. I wish everyone could see the photos you post!



      Feel free to share insights as you begin to "wrap your mind around" this new and interesting assessment from your appointment.

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Anxiety...

        How old is your son? And how high-functioning? I’m surprised by an ABA recommendation. That’s something usually suggested for young children (6 and under) and/or very low functioning individuals (though I could be wrong). A better recommendation might be cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), seeing a good counselor, a solid routine, EXERCISE and — in my experience — vitamin supplements.

        I have an anxious Boy in my house, too. You’re not alone.
        “If I should fall even a thousand times a day, a thousand times, with peaceful repentance, I will say immediately, Nunc Coepi, ‘Now, I begin.’.”

        ~Venerable Bruno Lanteri
        ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
        Wonder Boy 14 ... MP5 + R&S Math 6
        Joy Bubble 12 ... MP5 full core
        Cowboy 10 ... MP5 + R&S Math 4
        Sassafras 6 ... MP1
        All … SSPX Catechesis

        Comment


          #5
          Re: Anxiety...

          I don't believe my regular Peds is a "developmental" Peds. She did discuss that there is situational anxiety (a specific incident) that would not be treatable with meds. However, much anxiety is "neuro-chemical" and these situations (where a situation can not be specified/identified) are usually best treated with therapy + meds. (My Peds actually does not like shelling out meds. My older daughter, with ADHD she still does not believe should be on meds).

          1) We definitely have family with anxiety or some other mental illness. As this is a public forum, I will not share all the details, but I just had a conversation with my aunt (father's sister) about some interesting things. On my husband's side most of the boys are on some form of medication. However, their situations are different.

          2) My son does fine in organized classes. I never had to worry about him hitting other children, or being disruptive. (several family members said as early as preschool they were getting phone calls from the teacher about their child's behavior) We did have a small period of time at playgroups where my son would swing his arms and anyone around him would get whacked. (He was 2 at the time). I suspect now that he was over stimulated at the time. Are these called "stemming" behaviors? It was shortly after that that he started OT for the sensory stuff.

          3) He has trouble "stopping" almost anything he is enjoying doing, even with a "warning". He can outlast most adults in some activities. ( I do know hyper focus is a "symptom" of ADHD) Again, this seems different. "I" definitely have that hyper focus problem, but in activities, I can usually stop fairly easily.

          4) The doctor actually believes his sleep issues stem from the anxiety, almost like he is trying to calm himself.

          5) He is aware he is out of control and has been asking for help to calm himself down. She said most kids with ADHD are not even aware enough to be able to ask for this kind of help.

          6) She believes he is "living" on the edge so things that may seem little throw him over the edge, repeatedly. (which is why she thinks the zoloft will help)

          7) I agree with her that "OT" does not seem like enough help, so that is why she was thinking ABA, but I think I will call the office back and what they think about your suggestion, Anita for CBT. At this point, we are willing to try anything. (Anita, he will be 7 on the 1st of Sep)

          (trying to brain dump everything we talked about). Glad to have it here to reference! Glad to have some help to work through this.

          I do believe he needs way more down time than the rest of us. However, how do you do this, when you have other people in the family that do not require this? I've figured out he can handle an hour unstructured playdate. He will still be upset when I say it is time to go, but he just whines like a "normal" kid and it is relatively easy to go. Sometimes I miss this window though. One hour turns to two. (He is almost always fine WHILE at a playdate, so it isn't like he is showing me signs of being overstimulated, thus it is easy to lose track) If that one hour has turned to two though, the tantrum is usually very hard to deal with.

          It has been a hard summer. He was injured twice. The second one is requiring several additional appointments. (He fell off a scooter and banged his chin. When he banged his chin, he cracked 3 teeth. We just has oral surgery last Friday to remove them. (they are baby teeth). He will be 11ish before new teeth come in, but because of the space, a spacer has to be put in place so other teeth do not grow in the space. This will require several changes as he grows. He needs a filling on one of the crack teeth. My husband broke his ankle. He is home most of the day (he goes in a sorts the mail, then comes home until he is cleared). (shouldn't this actually be a blessing??? - it's been really hard to find a rhythm!!)
          Christine

          (2022/2023)
          DD1 8/23/09 -Mix of MP 6/7
          DS2 9/1/11 - Mix of SC 7/8 and SC 9/10 (R&S 5, FFL)
          DD3 2/9/13 -SC 5/6

          Previous Years
          DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4, Mix of MP3/4, Mix MP5/6
          DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, AAR/Storytime Treasures), CLE Math, Mix of MP3/4, MP5 (literature mix of SC 7/8/MP5)
          DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK, AAR), MP1, MP2

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Anxiety...

            Feel free to talk to me about vitamin supplements. I have a hard time ordering/buying them because I feel like the ingredient list alone in some makes me think...hmmmmmmm????

            So, what vitamin, and specifically which brand (and where to order) to people like to use ?
            Christine

            (2022/2023)
            DD1 8/23/09 -Mix of MP 6/7
            DS2 9/1/11 - Mix of SC 7/8 and SC 9/10 (R&S 5, FFL)
            DD3 2/9/13 -SC 5/6

            Previous Years
            DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4, Mix of MP3/4, Mix MP5/6
            DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, AAR/Storytime Treasures), CLE Math, Mix of MP3/4, MP5 (literature mix of SC 7/8/MP5)
            DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK, AAR), MP1, MP2

            Comment


              #7
              Re: Anxiety...

              Originally posted by howiecram View Post
              I don't believe my regular Peds is a "developmental" Peds. She did discuss that there is situational anxiety (a specific incident) that would not be treatable with meds. However, much anxiety is "neuro-chemical" and these situations (where a situation can not be specified/identified) are usually best treated with therapy + meds. (My Peds actually does not like shelling out meds. My older daughter, with ADHD she still does not believe should be on meds).

              1) We definitely have family with anxiety or some other mental illness. As this is a public forum, I will not share all the details, but I just had a conversation with my aunt (father's sister) about some interesting things. On my husband's side most of the boys are on some form of medication. However, their situations are different.

              2) My son does fine in organized classes. I never had to worry about him hitting other children, or being disruptive. (several family members said as early as preschool they were getting phone calls from the teacher about their child's behavior) We did have a small period of time at playgroups where my son would swing his arms and anyone around him would get whacked. (He was 2 at the time). I suspect now that he was over stimulated at the time. Are these called "stemming" behaviors? It was shortly after that that he started OT for the sensory stuff.

              3) He has trouble "stopping" almost anything he is enjoying doing, even with a "warning". He can outlast most adults in some activities. ( I do know hyper focus is a "symptom" of ADHD) Again, this seems different. "I" definitely have that hyper focus problem, but in activities, I can usually stop fairly easily.

              4) The doctor actually believes his sleep issues stem from the anxiety, almost like he is trying to calm himself.

              5) He is aware he is out of control and has been asking for help to calm himself down. She said most kids with ADHD are not even aware enough to be able to ask for this kind of help.

              6) She believes he is "living" on the edge so things that may seem little throw him over the edge, repeatedly. (which is why she thinks the zoloft will help)

              7) I agree with her that "OT" does not seem like enough help, so that is why she was thinking ABA, but I think I will call the office back and what they think about your suggestion, Anita for CBT. At this point, we are willing to try anything. (Anita, he will be 7 on the 1st of Sep)

              (trying to brain dump everything we talked about). Glad to have it here to reference! Glad to have some help to work through this.

              I do believe he needs way more down time than the rest of us. However, how do you do this, when you have other people in the family that do not require this? I've figured out he can handle an hour unstructured playdate. He will still be upset when I say it is time to go, but he just whines like a "normal" kid and it is relatively easy to go. Sometimes I miss this window though. One hour turns to two. (He is almost always fine WHILE at a playdate, so it isn't like he is showing me signs of being overstimulated, thus it is easy to lose track) If that one hour has turned to two though, the tantrum is usually very hard to deal with.

              It has been a hard summer. He was injured twice. The second one is requiring several additional appointments. (He fell off a scooter and banged his chin. When he banged his chin, he cracked 3 teeth. We just has oral surgery last Friday to remove them. (they are baby teeth). He will be 11ish before new teeth come in, but because of the space, a spacer has to be put in place so other teeth do not grow in the space. This will require several changes as he grows. He needs a filling on one of the crack teeth. My husband broke his ankle. He is home most of the day (he goes in a sorts the mail, then comes home until he is cleared). (shouldn't this actually be a blessing??? - it's been really hard to find a rhythm!!)

              This all sounds well-thought-out and reasonable. As for having your husband home, yes, even just having one more talking-walking person in the house 24/7 can add to feeling a little unsettled, but the spontaneity of having Dad around can also be good. (If everyone were on vacation, it might be more of a blessing. Trying to find a consistent rhythm without "scheduling" your husband can be difficult!) It sounds as if he will be healed and back to work soon.

              Clearly none of us can or should diagnose from here, but we're with you as you weigh options. A nearby friend attempted ABA (autism/anxiety/OCD, male age 9) and found some tips helpful, others annoying, but she said she would have always wondered if she hadn't explored it. In their case, family history was evident too, so medical intervention was helpful along with twice-daily outings and restructuring their days. She found gardening to be especially relaxing for her son and a good, healthy hobby for both of them. She and her husband tag-team the other children, because some like to be out-and-about far more. Sometimes they take small Mom-children vacations and Dad-children vacations while the other stays back with the child who has autism/anxiety/OCD, and other times they all go. When they all go, they know ahead of time that it will be low-key, but they all make the effort as a family.


              As you think about everything, it can all become information-overload, so if you have to go romp in the park or jump in the pool, play with your little boy, and think about it later, that's okay.

              When you're ready to make a plan, just be as sensible as you can. You're a good analyzer, so I know you will serve him well!

              Comment


                #8
                Re: Anxiety...

                My youngest has autism and severe anxiety. He has above average intelligence, but fits very well into SC. He needs the extra practice and multi-sensory activities and the explicit social skills in SC. I think he'll be able to go at the one year pace when he hits 5-6, but looking at it, it will still fit him better than MP 3rd grade. It is a hard thing to accept for a bright kid, but it is what it is.

                We have never done ABA, although it is possible even at his age. Ome of my reasons for being wary is having read accounts of terrible ABA therapy written by autistic adults. The other thing is the invasive nature of it. The thought of someone coming into my house constantly, judging me and my kids is enough to make me say no to it. I know most people wouldn't be worried about that, but however much I talk online, we are intensely private people when it comes to our home and in-person life. Very few people are invited in, and the thought of a therapist that might rotate to a new person every few months is too much.

                We do take him to OT, speech, PT, a developmental ophthalmologist, a developmental pediatrician, his regular pediatrician, and a psychologist who does CBT with him.

                The CBT has been incredibly effective. They moved him from being in a panic attack from glimpsing a baby doll to touching them and not caring if they are in the room. He can sleep with the lights turned out now. Needles are a THING still, but it really does work.

                He takes a low dose of Zoloft. He's been on it for about 2 years now. I would like him to be off it someday, but it really does knock the edges off for him. Before it he couldn't adequately participate in the therapy to get anything out of it.

                Good luck with your boy!
                Miah - married to Warcabbage, 3 boys, BS in social work, AS in Electrical Engineering Technology

                Evulcarrot - 18, freshman in college, Medical Technology , mild autism
                Battlebroccoli - 17, lives with grandma, attends a special high school program part time
                Doomsprout - 10, highly verbal moderate autism, anxiety, motor delays, sensory processing issues - SC 4 with R&S 4

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: Anxiety...

                  I have two with anxiety. In both cases, nothing really "caused" it. It is coming from their own biological make-ups. A low dose of Zoloft and OT made a HUGE difference for one of them. The other didn't need OT. These are also my two with ADD-type symptoms. No hyperactivity, but lots of inattentiveness, etc. They both also display low levels of OCD.

                  I've never heard of ABA being used for anxiety. That's interesting.
                  Gina
                  Honored & Blessed to be teaching my children at home
                  (since 2001)

                  DS-sophomore in college
                  DD-soon-to-be college freshman!
                  DD-9
                  DS-8

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: Anxiety...

                    This is the place my peds is looking into regarding the integrated therapy.

                    https://www.hopebridge.com/
                    Christine

                    (2022/2023)
                    DD1 8/23/09 -Mix of MP 6/7
                    DS2 9/1/11 - Mix of SC 7/8 and SC 9/10 (R&S 5, FFL)
                    DD3 2/9/13 -SC 5/6

                    Previous Years
                    DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4, Mix of MP3/4, Mix MP5/6
                    DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, AAR/Storytime Treasures), CLE Math, Mix of MP3/4, MP5 (literature mix of SC 7/8/MP5)
                    DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK, AAR), MP1, MP2

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: Anxiety...

                      Originally posted by howiecram View Post
                      Feel free to talk to me about vitamin supplements. I have a hard time ordering/buying them because I feel like the ingredient list alone in some makes me think...hmmmmmmm????

                      So, what vitamin, and specifically which brand (and where to order) to people like to use ?
                      Go to this thread:https://forum.memoriapress.com/showt...aluation/page2 and peruse the info — particularly Cheryl’s defense of and experience with supplements. This is my original “prescription” from Winston’s doctor:

                      He “prescribed” Inositol (anxiety), Omega 3/EPA-DHA (focus, brain development, and mood stability) and Zinc (attention, sensory issues). He also suggested I research MTHfR, the mechanism responsible for B-vitamins’ methylation. Supposedly, if this mal or under functions, depression commonly results. (This may explain why depression and anxiety run in families.) Again: hmm. I’m intrigued.
                      1/2 teaspoon Inositol, dissolved in water, morning and evening
                      https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0013OUKPC?ref=yo_pop_ma_swf
                      One caplet of fish oil (1000 mg) with EPA/DHA, once a day.
                      https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M3YIMSK?ref=yo_pop_ma_swf
                      30 mg zinc once a day
                      EZ Melts Zinc for Immune Support https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00VXE7MSA?ref=yo_pop_ma_swf
                      Regular (vegan) multivitamin, once daily
                      VegLife Vegan Kids Multiple Berry. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LZGPPWS?ref=yo_pop_ma_swf

                      My son is 10 and weighs a little over 100lbs. Inositol can be dosed much higher, too. 1/2 t twice daily is fairly low. I feel safe to say the supplements have helped a fair amount.
                      Last edited by Anita; 08-07-2018, 05:45 PM.
                      “If I should fall even a thousand times a day, a thousand times, with peaceful repentance, I will say immediately, Nunc Coepi, ‘Now, I begin.’.”

                      ~Venerable Bruno Lanteri
                      ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
                      Wonder Boy 14 ... MP5 + R&S Math 6
                      Joy Bubble 12 ... MP5 full core
                      Cowboy 10 ... MP5 + R&S Math 4
                      Sassafras 6 ... MP1
                      All … SSPX Catechesis

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: Anxiety...

                        Christine,

                        We have used ABA for my son, it has been really useful. Even though we don’t see our ABA program supervisor anymore I still use these practices as needed.

                        You mentioned that there were some specific things causing anxiety...I imagine that ABA might be a way to overcome these.

                        Here’s some examples of how ABA has helped us over the years:
                        - When my son was 4 we could not go to the shops without a meltdown. I forget if we were using sunnies and earmuffs too at this point...but his therapy was to go to the shops every single day. Even if it was just to walk in and walk out. I kept a bag of little lollies, cut up marshmallows or little bits of chocolate in the top of the stroller and gave him rewards for walking nicely by the stroller. We built up so that a couple of months later he was able to stand in line with my husband in a crowded shop.
                        - Using tokens to reward when doing lessons. We don’t do this now, but when we did level B I used a token chart where he needed to get 8 lawnmower tokens to get a little lolly or a puzzle piece or sticker. The lawnmower tokens were rewarding in themselves and gave extra help to stay focused.
                        - When I’ve been working on my son’s diet I’ve been using these techniques too. A little sip of water then you can have your milk. Now he’s drinking half a little cup of water and often says he doesn’t need the milk anymore. Trying new foods: instead of making him have for instance a small piece of meat or vegetable (I can do this now without him vomiting etc) I started with touch it to your lips then give a piece of pasta (what he wanted to eat) touch it to your tongue, give a piece of pasta, take a tiny bite etc etc

                        The thing I’ve realised about ABA is that it’s a lot of figuring out how to break things down to make learning easier. It can feel funny when it’s the basic training in my first example. We had been training our dog before doing ABA. It felt weird that many of the principles were the same. I can see how it could be demeaning, but it can also help a person break through obstacles that are preventing them from living more fully. My son’s therapist would say she liked to use ABA on herself!

                        My son’s psychologist was giving him some CBT activities for kids when we were seeing her and they have been amazing. But trying them with my 8yo daughter, not at all helpful! She will not participate. My husband hates CBT too and she is so much like him. He’s quite amazed it works for Jonathan. Me, I can’t stand deep breathing exercises and didn’t manage to teach that one very effectively!

                        Anxiety is so awful, I hope you find a great therapist who can help your son quickly.
                        Sarah

                        Aussies from Sydney, Australia
                        Miriam 10yo
                        Jonathan 8yo
                        Elissa 5yo
                        Thomas 2yo
                        Caleb 2 months

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: Anxiety...

                          Originally posted by sarahandrew View Post
                          Christine,

                          We have used ABA for my son, it has been really useful. Even though we don’t see our ABA program supervisor anymore I still use these practices as needed.

                          You mentioned that there were some specific things causing anxiety...I imagine that ABA might be a way to overcome these.

                          Here’s some examples of how ABA has helped us over the years:
                          - When my son was 4 we could not go to the shops without a meltdown. I forget if we were using sunnies and earmuffs too at this point...but his therapy was to go to the shops every single day. Even if it was just to walk in and walk out. I kept a bag of little lollies, cut up marshmallows or little bits of chocolate in the top of the stroller and gave him rewards for walking nicely by the stroller. We built up so that a couple of months later he was able to stand in line with my husband in a crowded shop.
                          - Using tokens to reward when doing lessons. We don’t do this now, but when we did level B I used a token chart where he needed to get 8 lawnmower tokens to get a little lolly or a puzzle piece or sticker. The lawnmower tokens were rewarding in themselves and gave extra help to stay focused.
                          - When I’ve been working on my son’s diet I’ve been using these techniques too. A little sip of water then you can have your milk. Now he’s drinking half a little cup of water and often says he doesn’t need the milk anymore. Trying new foods: instead of making him have for instance a small piece of meat or vegetable (I can do this now without him vomiting etc) I started with touch it to your lips then give a piece of pasta (what he wanted to eat) touch it to your tongue, give a piece of pasta, take a tiny bite etc etc

                          The thing I’ve realised about ABA is that it’s a lot of figuring out how to break things down to make learning easier. It can feel funny when it’s the basic training in my first example. We had been training our dog before doing ABA. It felt weird that many of the principles were the same. I can see how it could be demeaning, but it can also help a person break through obstacles that are preventing them from living more fully. My son’s therapist would say she liked to use ABA on herself!

                          My son’s psychologist was giving him some CBT activities for kids when we were seeing her and they have been amazing. But trying them with my 8yo daughter, not at all helpful! She will not participate. My husband hates CBT too and she is so much like him. He’s quite amazed it works for Jonathan. Me, I can’t stand deep breathing exercises and didn’t manage to teach that one very effectively!

                          Anxiety is so awful, I hope you find a great therapist who can help your son quickly.
                          Yes! I think this is exactly what we need. I still will not forget how painful it was for him to get dressed. It took 10 solid weeks, of tantrums everyday before he would do it. I now look back and think “if only I broke it down for him” we could have avoided this tantrum! It seemed ridiculous at the time, but now......

                          The food example is also the kind of thing we need as well. When he was 14 months old, we had to cut out peanuts, soy, dairy, eggs, gluten, corn. This is a sensitive time for feeding and he already showed signs of sensory issues with food. I found “baby led weaning” because he would not eat baby food. I was talking to a friend earlier that I also think he/we missed that when he was an infant he did not mouth things like most babies do. I just thought “oh he is an easy baby”. I did not realize at the time this was actually a red flag. I have a picture of him in the sandbox at 9 months, proud that he did not eat the sand, or even try!

                          Thank you!
                          Christine

                          (2022/2023)
                          DD1 8/23/09 -Mix of MP 6/7
                          DS2 9/1/11 - Mix of SC 7/8 and SC 9/10 (R&S 5, FFL)
                          DD3 2/9/13 -SC 5/6

                          Previous Years
                          DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4, Mix of MP3/4, Mix MP5/6
                          DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, AAR/Storytime Treasures), CLE Math, Mix of MP3/4, MP5 (literature mix of SC 7/8/MP5)
                          DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK, AAR), MP1, MP2

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Re: Anxiety...

                            I have such a love-hate relationship with ABA. I survived 25 hours a week for almost 2 years. I just couldn't do it anymore. While I loved the company when hubby was out of town for insanely long stretches, really it all came down to my consistency. Set a goal, stick to it, build up to it if trying to do it outright doesn't work, and find the reward or incentive through experimentation. Just be consistent. That is the hardest part. It's all you in the end. DH and I had so many arguments b/c I was home 4 hours in the morning with the therapist as she ripped him away from me and shut him in his room away from me, sobbing and grief-stricken, endlessly showing his little 2-year-old self flashcards he had to touch in order to gain access to me. I was much praised for participating. It ripped my heart out. Sometimes we would go out shopping and he'd scream and cry in the cart while she held my son down and repeated to him in a calm voice, "First quiet mouth, then mom." It was guilt-inducing b/c all of my friends with NT kids said their kids were awful and lost their minds at the grocery store, too, so they just left their kids home. Soon, they pressured me into center-based therapy (even though I held off for a year), and then I found out they were changing his goals we had set together in order to make his 60% or better mastery look way better than it should have been. They lied to me and worked on dumb stuff like "community helpers" identification because he had already mastered it last year. Or, when he was limited verbal and not saying anything at all, they'd ask me how my weekend went, I'd tell them he spontaneously started saying "milk," and they would add milk to his goals, and then brag about how they got him to say all these words. When I asked for the words, they were ALL words I reported that he was already spontaneously saying. When I asked them to work on important words, they said they'd add it, but it never made it into the goals b/c they were busy locking him in a windowless room for 4 hours a day, giving him access to this pretty amazing "sensory gym" for 15 minutes every 2 hours...and most of that was transition time, clean up, taking off shoes, and a few more verbal prompts.

                            Oh my word, I was so livid it pretty much ruined it for me for life. While I enjoyed our early providers who worked in spec. ed schools and were really sweet, he got paired with some wet dishrags after the 1st 6 months. See, when your child is actually pretty advanced or responds well to ABA, they run your child through all the newbies to get their numbers up. It's all about numbers with these insurance companies breathing down their necks for "demonstrable results." They love to tout that they are the only ones who can statistically prove (or show with empirical data) that their approach works. But it's such malarky. They'd talk a big talk about how they are the only approach that can potty train nonverbal kids, get kids with self-harming behaviors to stop and more. But all throughout therapy, they'd only do the big stuff on paper with me tracking the data (exhaustively filling out these ridiculous reports about antecedent behaviors, date, time, how long did it last, what did you do next, how effective was the punishment or whatever---love of heaven). I finally told them that if I had to fill out one of these reports every single time he pulled his sister's hair (it was a big deal at the time--causing so much friction in the family), I would be writing paperwork all day. I literally stopped and bawled my eyes out after the 23rd incident report in half a day. When they returned the next weekday, they told me because I was not able to fill out the paperwork appropriately (all weekend), that they wouldn't be able to accurately address the issue, and I could expect it to continue. I was like, "isn't that your job?" 2 years later he just grew out of it. Nothing ever worked. Once we left ABA, we put him in a normal private school. He had a decent year of picking up on acceptable social and classroom norms. We're doing SC B this year...and it's going pretty well. We had to stop SP and OT for financial reasons, but I loved those. The Lord called us to a season of rest--no therapies at all. I am assiduously working to repair the damage that was done to our family relationship by all that forced separation and denied access to mom. He is generally a delight now. He just has a hard time with failed expectations and broken promises, but he's pretty flexible schedule-wise. If I learned anything from ABA, it is consistency. I do that as best as I can.

                            So....be very, very, very thoughtful about what you expect to get out of ABA. My personal opinion is that classical counseling will get you and your older child a lot closer to a happy family dynamic than ABA. No matter what, be prayerful about what the LORD would have you do. Do NOTHING without passing it by our heavenly Father. The Lord's peace and leading may seem counterintuitive to everything else your doctors recommend, but that is the beauty of obedience. When you step into His will, He gets to bear the burden.
                            Mama of 2, teacher of 3
                            Summer: First Start French I
                            SY 22/23
                            6A, teaching TFL & CC Chreia/Maxim in group, and Koine Greek
                            MP2 w/ R&S Arithmetic 3


                            Completed MPK, MP1, MP2, 3A, 4A, 5A
                            SC B, SC C, SC1 (Phonics/Math), SC2's Writing Book 1

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: Anxiety...

                              This (and other stories like it), plus the sheer cost and time commitment of ABA, are why we never did it with our son. He was nonverbal until age five and used to get such separation anxiety (when I left his room at night for bedtime, for example) that he would often vomit. We just couldn’t stomach the thought of ABA for him. He would have been in far too much distress.

                              The Lord made it all right. <3 Lots of love, good routine and full time mom-ing set the foundation; Simply Classical took it from there!

                              Originally posted by enbateau View Post
                              I have such a love-hate relationship with ABA. I survived 25 hours a week for almost 2 years. I just couldn't do it anymore. While I loved the company when hubby was out of town for insanely long stretches, really it all came down to my consistency. Set a goal, stick to it, build up to it if trying to do it outright doesn't work, and find the reward or incentive through experimentation. Just be consistent. That is the hardest part. It's all you in the end. DH and I had so many arguments b/c I was home 4 hours in the morning with the therapist as she ripped him away from me and shut him in his room away from me, sobbing and grief-stricken, endlessly showing his little 2-year-old self flashcards he had to touch in order to gain access to me. I was much praised for participating. It ripped my heart out. Sometimes we would go out shopping and he'd scream and cry in the cart while she held my son down and repeated to him in a calm voice, "First quiet mouth, then mom." It was guilt-inducing b/c all of my friends with NT kids said their kids were awful and lost their minds at the grocery store, too, so they just left their kids home. Soon, they pressured me into center-based therapy (even though I held off for a year), and then I found out they were changing his goals we had set together in order to make his 60% or better mastery look way better than it should have been. They lied to me and worked on dumb stuff like "community helpers" identification because he had already mastered it last year. Or, when he was limited verbal and not saying anything at all, they'd ask me how my weekend went, I'd tell them he spontaneously started saying "milk," and they would add milk to his goals, and then brag about how they got him to say all these words. When I asked for the words, they were ALL words I reported that he was already spontaneously saying. When I asked them to work on important words, they said they'd add it, but it never made it into the goals b/c they were busy locking him in a windowless room for 4 hours a day, giving him access to this pretty amazing "sensory gym" for 15 minutes every 2 hours...and most of that was transition time, clean up, taking off shoes, and a few more verbal prompts.

                              Oh my word, I was so livid it pretty much ruined it for me for life. While I enjoyed our early providers who worked in spec. ed schools and were really sweet, he got paired with some wet dishrags after the 1st 6 months. See, when your child is actually pretty advanced or responds well to ABA, they run your child through all the newbies to get their numbers up. It's all about numbers with these insurance companies breathing down their necks for "demonstrable results." They love to tout that they are the only ones who can statistically prove (or show with empirical data) that their approach works. But it's such malarky. They'd talk a big talk about how they are the only approach that can potty train nonverbal kids, get kids with self-harming behaviors to stop and more. But all throughout therapy, they'd only do the big stuff on paper with me tracking the data (exhaustively filling out these ridiculous reports about antecedent behaviors, date, time, how long did it last, what did you do next, how effective was the punishment or whatever---love of heaven). I finally told them that if I had to fill out one of these reports every single time he pulled his sister's hair (it was a big deal at the time--causing so much friction in the family), I would be writing paperwork all day. I literally stopped and bawled my eyes out after the 23rd incident report in half a day. When they returned the next weekday, they told me because I was not able to fill out the paperwork appropriately (all weekend), that they wouldn't be able to accurately address the issue, and I could expect it to continue. I was like, "isn't that your job?" 2 years later he just grew out of it. Nothing ever worked. Once we left ABA, we put him in a normal private school. He had a decent year of picking up on acceptable social and classroom norms. We're doing SC B this year...and it's going pretty well. We had to stop SP and OT for financial reasons, but I loved those. The Lord called us to a season of rest--no therapies at all. I am assiduously working to repair the damage that was done to our family relationship by all that forced separation and denied access to mom. He is generally a delight now. He just has a hard time with failed expectations and broken promises, but he's pretty flexible schedule-wise. If I learned anything from ABA, it is consistency. I do that as best as I can.

                              So....be very, very, very thoughtful about what you expect to get out of ABA. My personal opinion is that classical counseling will get you and your older child a lot closer to a happy family dynamic than ABA. No matter what, be prayerful about what the LORD would have you do. Do NOTHING without passing it by our heavenly Father. The Lord's peace and leading may seem counterintuitive to everything else your doctors recommend, but that is the beauty of obedience. When you step into His will, He gets to bear the burden.
                              “If I should fall even a thousand times a day, a thousand times, with peaceful repentance, I will say immediately, Nunc Coepi, ‘Now, I begin.’.”

                              ~Venerable Bruno Lanteri
                              ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
                              Wonder Boy 14 ... MP5 + R&S Math 6
                              Joy Bubble 12 ... MP5 full core
                              Cowboy 10 ... MP5 + R&S Math 4
                              Sassafras 6 ... MP1
                              All … SSPX Catechesis

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