Tags and Categories: Does Your Child Have “Special Needs”?

It is a drama that is repeated over and over again in every city in the country, sometime between preschool and second grade. A child’s teachers are concerned that the child is not performing up to standard and ask parents to speak with the child’s doctor. Parents reluctantly bring the issue up in the doctor’s office and the doctor speaks directly to the teacher. Suddenly, the acronyms start to flow: does the child have ADHD? What about CAPD? Maybe it’s DDS-NOS? … and all parents think is “Our son is not a label.”

That thought is not only perfectly natural, it is absolutely correct. No child is a label and, in fact, assigning a label to your child will affect the way their life progresses for much of their foreseeable future. The important part for any parent to remember when learning that their child may not be entirely typical is that etiquette can, and in many cases is, a positive change for a child who is really struggling.

An honest story

A man named Michael was kind enough to share his story about his struggle with a son who needed help:

“My name is Michael and I spent a year insisting that my son didn’t have ADHD. I didn’t think ADHD was even real; we’ve heard so many stories about how it’s overdiagnosed and there are so many kids on Adderall and Ritalin or whatever, So how could my son have it? I told his teachers that he was just a kid, a little rambunctious, and that they could deal with it. “

“Then one day, six months throughout the school year, his teacher called us for a meeting and he basically collapsed in front of us. Our son already had an IEP because he had speech delays, and they had used it silently. . IEP for our son seven people to help him every school day. He had a speech therapist, an occupational therapist, a physical therapist, three assistants, and his regular teacher … and he still couldn’t get through most of the days. “

“We were caught off guard, but it’s because we didn’t want to deal with the fact that our son might have problems beyond his speech delays (which he easily overcame in kindergarten). So we started investigating. My mother-in-law is a nutritionist, and she gave us a lot of advice on ADHD and eating. We tried dozens of diets, several different levels of physical intervention … at one point, I’d wake up two hours before school so we could keep up. max. dictionary size in this four-year-old’s backpack and have him run a mile with me before getting on the school bus. Nothing. By the time he got to school, he was uncontrollable again like he was never exhausted. “

“Finally, two years after we first heard the diagnosis, we received a prescription. It took us a few more months to find the right drug at the right level … and literally three months later, our now first grader was pulled from special education and put him in a real class with kids who weren’t problematic. Now he loves school and is getting two grade levels higher in math and reading than his peers. “

“In the end, having our son labeled (openly recognized by everyone involved as someone who needed help, but managed quite a bit once he had it) was the best thing that ever happened to him. I will never regret it.”

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