My 3 year old was diagnosed with ASD a few months back. He'd stopped speaking at 18 months. Every other milestone was reached so we thought it was a speech issue. Told to wait for ST until he was 2 and a half. Noted sensory hyper stimulation at 2. Suspected SPD. GP concurred and felt an assessment was necessary.
Our GP referred us to a pediatrician, he was assessed by a speech therapist and the paediatrician (the latter actually sat at the table and spoke to me during the assessment) for about 40 minutes and the verdict was delivered - ASD with global developmental delay.
My first response wasn't devastation but confusion. I'd had my money on Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD). I asked her if she was sure.
"Well, we're never sure because the spectrum is so diverse but I am putting ASD as your child's primary diagnosis," was her response.
I went to a teacher friend who had Special Ed experience. She deciphered the report and I learned that the secondary diagnosis was the delay. They'd put him two years behind.
I immediately disagreed with this. So did teacher friend.
Thankfully, so did my GP.
But hey, you get funding, I was told. So I went and got it. To be honest, it came in fast. I then started the long road to organising resources. Dofferent story....laborious, long waits...Finally found OT and ST. Put him in child care. Took to that like a duck to water.
Then the comments started. He doesn't look autistic. He's just eccentric. It's easy to play the system for more funding isn't it. Why can't he speak? Well he's autistic so he'll need one on one care. Because of his disorder we'll need to see if we can get extra funding before we accept your enrollment. Gee, he's so affectionate and bright..I didn't think he was autistic (that comment illustrates stereotypes in action, not my refusal to accept).
People can be so cruel. So empty headed. So limited in their thinking.
I didn't cry when he was diagnosed. I got angry. It was blood I wanted to shed, not tears.
I queried the veracity of the report. Shut up and just take the funding, I was told. You need to accept this, said another. Why? Why MUST I accept this when what I read in the report doesn't match what I'm seeing on the ground? Shhhh, you're fully funded, peeps would kill for that.
Really? Are we that kind of a society?
I saw the thread Not Coping With Diagnosis and I thought, true, not coping with mine either but in a different way. I am royally ****ed off. With the diagnosis and an industry that capitalises on it.
So this is my version of not coping very well. I'm the Clayton's Got It So Together Woman*. The woman you are when you're not really that woman at all.
(*to those who don't know Clayton's, because I'm old and you're not, Google the iconic ad)