…The Bad, and the Ugly

Usually I don’t write when I’m angry and frustrated, but I am beyond myself today.  I know that after the fire, the plains will be washed clean by cleansing rain in the form of tears and I will let go of this moment. It will eventually become nothing more than a grain of dirt washed away into the ocean and nearly forgotten about.


We all have our run ins with good doctors, bad doctors, and the ugly. Today fell somewhere in between all three for different reasons. Of course, it’s the bad and the ugly that have me frustrated beyond all means, angry for not being heard, and ready for tears with a little lost hope.

This morning, I attended a feedback appointment with the boys’ psychiatrist to discuss Seamus’ evaluation (recommended by another physician to rule out an anxiety and separation disorder based on how Sea scored himself). Fortunately, he has no concerns with either of those and does not recommend treatment and/or medication at this point in time – the good.

The bad and the ugly.

The conversation divulged towards discussing both of the boys, how they are doing at home, their relationship with their father, and the psychiatrist’s “diagnoses” for both boys. Sea isn’t on the spectrum, I get that. He may have some spectrum-like behaviors, but doesn’t qualify for a diagnosis. Great! Wonderful news! Wes, on the other hand, was placed on the spectrum by two other doctors, three different therapists, and was considered “borderline” by this doctor at the last appointment. Today, this doctor said that Wesley is non-symptomatic of having an ASD – that he is a bit off, a bit rigid, and a bit quirky. What?!

So, we’re disregarding the inability to empathize with others except a few people he is extremely close to, we’re disregarding the use of repetitive phrases, we’re disregarding the lack of eye contact, the hyperfocus on Sci-fy/Fantasy/Mythology, the inability to identify his own feelings and emotions (except for anger), the complete loss of ability to use the skills and intellect he has during an emotional/challenging situation, the difficulties he has in social situations, the hypersensitivity and feeling of being overwhelmed in social situations his peers have no problem with (which you can read on his face!), his difficulty and lack of pragmatic skills, in turn-taking during conversations, etc???!!!

This doctor argued that the evaluations Wes has been given have looked at a snapshot of his life at a particular point in time and isn’t accurate. Well, I have to say the same of his evaluation – the couple of hours he spent “evaluating” Wesley was a snapshot of his life at a particular point in time and isn’t accurate. It doesn’t catch him at his best, nor does it catch him at his worst. To completely discount what a parent observes, what other doctors and therapists have observed, is infuriating and incredibly frustrating. And, it makes me feel that I have lost a little bit of hope, that I’ve lost a step in being able to do the absolute best for and provide the best services possible to continue to support Wesley’s growth and development.

There are other reasons why this falls into the bad and the ugly that I won’t get into details on, but I will say that I am ONE WOMAN. ONE. JUST ONE. I am a single mom of not one, but two children that I am busting my fanny raising in the best way possible, that I have made sacrifices for and have delayed what I want to do with my life until they have reached a point where they are stable and steady enough for me to move forward on my path a bit more. It is not my responsibility to solve other people’s relationships with the boys, it’s not. I’ve been there, done and tried that, and did nothing but waste my time and the boys’ time. I am not super woman, or maybe I am a super woman, but I will not take the time and effort to repair something that I did not break, that I did not contribute to its demise. I WILL take the time and effort to foster whatever positive relationships they have that are directly related to their time spent with me and I will and do take the time and effort to get them the help and services they need to stay on par with, or move towards being on par with, their peers. I will and do take the effort each and every day to mirror, to teach, and to guide so that they learn, so that scripting becomes as easy and familiar as the back of their hand when they’re upset, not just when they’re calm, so that Wes and Sea laugh and smile each and every day.

So, to the bad and the ugly side of this particular doctor, when you see what I see, when you hear what I hear, when you do what I do, when you listen, truly listen to what I say, to what I see and hear every day, I will consider your opinion regarding diagnoses. Until then, thank you for supporting me in not wanting to medicate either child and, so long.

Up next, the Good…

This entry was posted in advocacy, autism spectrum disorders, family, parenting, writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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