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Showing posts from August, 2010

Article: A School Example - Kaelan's Bad Day.

Here's something that used to be on my now-retired Family blog. Normally I keep my blogs quite separate but I think this instance is relevant here.

In this case, it's an article about my eldest son Kaelan's bad day at school. Kaelan is about three weeks shy of being 10. He has Aspergers Syndrome, Non-Verbal Learning Disorder (NVLD) and ADHD-Inattentive.
School is a real struggle for him both in social and academic terms because although people with aspergers often have social but not academic issues, the NVLD and ADHD-i components ensure that he has both.
I don't have any sage advice for his bad day. It's not his school's fault - they really are a good and caring school. It's not his fault either. In both incidents, a child with better communication skills could probably have understood and communicated the problems to reduce the impact.
I guess, it's just a good example of how things can spiral out of control much more quickly for children with di…

Book Review: "The Uncharted Path: My Journey with Late-Diagnosed Autism" by Rachel B. Cohen-Rottenberg

I read the uncharted path a little while ago and wrote the review but forgot to publish it. (sorry Rachel!). I wanted to go back and talk about some specifics but first I'll publish the original review.
The uncharted path is an autism biography like none I've ever read. Unlike similar books, Rachel's main journey takes place during adulthood. The book certainly covers Rachel's childhood but it's clear that the main changes occurred much later in her life. This allows for much more mature reasoning processes and as a result, the decisions she makes carry greater significance.
More than any other book I've read, "The Uncharted Path" takes the reader out of their comfortable world and puts them right behind the eyeballs of a woman awakening to her place on the autism spectrum.
The book fleshes out many of the less obvious aspects of the female side of autism. In one section, there are somewhat ambiguous quotes from Professor Tony Attwood alongside re…

Article: Medical Treatment for Aspergers

Just drawing your attention to a lengthy article on www.myaspergerschild.com about medicating children with aspergers.
Medical Treatment for Aspergers http://www.myaspergerschild.com/2010/08/medical-treatment-for-aspergers.html
The article is pro-medication and it initially had me quite worried because there's really no proven medication which is effective against aspergers - only against the symptoms.
Eventually after a lot of waffle - important waffle - the article suggests that;
"focusing on target symptoms provides a crucial framework for care. Knowing manifestations of symptoms and characterizing their distribution and behavior in that patient is most important."
In other words medicate according to the symptoms rather than the label. This is mostly common sense.
It's the final paragraph that seems to me to be a little "bittersweet";
Pharmacotherapy is not the ultimate treatment for ASPERGERS but it has a definite place. Medication can be a critical element …

Book Review: Aspergers in Pink by Julie Clark

This review is for "Aspergers in Pink: A Mother and Daughter Guidebook for Raising (or being) a Girl with Aspergers" by Julie Clark
First Impressions It's funny but although the phrase to "not judge a book by its cover" isn't meant to be taken literally, I do still find myself applying that kind of judgement - and most frequently to books. Whenever I pick up a book, particularly a non-fiction book, I tend to formulate some idea of what I expect to get out of it.
In the case of "Aspergers in Pink" my expectations were significantly skewed by the long title. I guess that my original thought was that here was a chance to familiarise myself with the elusive "female aspie". In that sense, I think that the title is misleading because the book doesn't really bring a whole heap of "female-specific" information to the table.
At the end of the book, I'm still no closer to finding out if my wife displays "female aspie" t…

Getting Tripped up with Language

It's funny but I usually don't feel like I get tripped up taking language and expressions literally. Not the way classic aspies do anyway.
I'm generally clear about my expressions when I use them both in real life and on this blog. If I decide to use one:
for example; "beat around the bush", I'll usually enclose it in inverted commas.
Even when talking, if I use an expression, I'll either use a different inflection or I'll draw virtual inverted commas as I use it.
So yeah, I like to think that I'm immune to expression problems.
Even so, I've had my share of bad ones most notably my "bring a plate" cringeworthy example. I don't think I'll ever recover from that. It was very, very embarrassing. Then of course, there's the time I asked someone how badly they needed to use a toilet because ours was "only for emergencies". My wife, of course loves to remind me of the time I changed a tyre by throwing the old one away…

FTF: Post 7: Emotional Acceptance by Cat Lichtenbelt

This month's First Things First article is by Cat Lichtenbelt. Cat writes at http://www.sensoryflow.com/.
The article is called "Emotional Acceptance" and it can be found on Hartley Steiner's blog.
Cat's article is written from the heart. She walks us through the various emotional stages she passed through on her particular journey. It's interesting because these aren't textbook stages. They're not the usual "grief cycle" stages. They're much more personal.
It's strange because my own personal stages have never included anger. If anything I'm too calm and too detached. Perhaps that's my aspergers speaking? My wife is the opposite though and the frustration of school meetings and homework issues really gets to her.
It's hard for me to show empathy when the same things which don't provoke much of a reaction from me affect her so badly.
I guess it's a bit like that movie... "Meet Joe Black" where Brad P…