Special Needs

Where do I go next?

My DS is being evaluated by a speech therapist next week for his lack of communication and strange behavior. I'am almost positive he has ASD, but I'm not sure what to do. He is being evaluated through the Infants and Toddlers program, but from what I'm told, they don't do a lot of therapy. I want him to start therapy asap since I think this would greatly help him. However, I've heard that most doctors won't give an official diagnosis until the age of 2. I just don't see the point in waiting, if he can start receiving help now. Is there a doctor or program I should be looking into?

 Also, something I've noticed about my DS is that he has no sense of personal boundaries. He is always in others kids faces, and just disregards them. Then this morning at story time he ran up to another mother sitting on the floor with her daughter in her lap and hugged her and tried to sit with her. I was so shocked and embarassed. I've noticed before that he has gone up and hugged the back of someone's legs, but I thought maybe he was confused and thought it was me. But I for sure know he wasn't confused today, he looked the lady right in the face. Is this part of ASD?

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Re: Where do I go next?

  • I think it is good you are following your gut and getting him evaluated. I would let EI figure out where his strengths and weaknesses are and go from there. Get as much as they are willing to give you in terms of services.

    I do not know what county you are in (We are in Baltimore City) but keep in mind that they will have an additional 30 days after the evaluation report is recieved by their office to schedule your child for any services. Also, they will not be able to dx your child, so I would feel more comfortable seeing and expert who can look at all areas of delays, vs someone just looking at speech. It will be good to be able to bring the speech evaluation report with you to any doctor you see so make sure you get a copy of it.

    In the mean time, I would think about going to Kennedy Krieger or CHOP(philly) and set up an appoinment with either a developmental pediatrician or psychiatrist. I know KKI has an autism center so if you call there they will be more than happy to point you in the right direction. I would call today because sometimes the wait times for an appointment are 2-3 months out. If it turns out that his behaviors resolve themselves then you can just cancel.

    Feel free to PM me if you have any other questions. We are not dealing with an ASD diagnosis (yet), but Nate does get multiple services through EI. There are also a couple of mommies on here from Maryland who are dealing with ASD and they will def. be able to help you out. Good Luck!

    WAY 2 Cool 4 School

  • Definitely a developmental pedi. If you want therapy beyond what EI will provide, check with your insurance company on what, if anything, is covered and what diagnosis is needed. Even if you don't have an autism dx, you can start assembling some of the therapeutic pieces & parts according to his needs. If he's diagnosed with a speech delay, maybe insurance will cover speech therapy. If you have him eval'd by an occupational therapist and it's determined he has motor delays or sensory issues, maybe they'll pay for OT. 

    And of course you can choose pretty much any therapy if you're paying OOP. 

    As far as the specific behavior you mentioned, I've seen it go either way. DD1 has autism and there are times at say, a holiday party, when she has just climbed into a stranger's lap without saying a word, as if she thinks they're either me or DH. DD2 is (so far) very typical and at our music class, for awhile around 12 months, she would flop herself into other mothers' laps. Last weekend at a BBQ, she went up to the gruffest guy in the room and wanted him to pick her up/sit her on his lap because he had the best view of the fish tank. 

    It's a subtle difference. DD1 seems to do it, IMO, because she's just oblivious to other people at times. DD2 is very aware of people and communicative, but fearless at this age. Personal boundaries are a tricky thing, IMO, because typical kids may not have a good sense of them either, for awhile; autistic kids just have an even harder time.


    DD1, 1/5/2008 ~~~ DD2, 3/17/2010
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