Special Needs

ASD Intro.

Hello! Wanted to introduce myself since I've been lurking for a month. I have a two-year-old son who was just diagnosed with ASD.

The earliest signs were hyperlexia (kid was picking letters and numbers off signs at fourteen months), memorizing and reciting his books, an obsession with wheels, and poor eye contact. The M-CHAT at eighteen months didn't raise flags because "sometimes" he does XYZ. We figured we just had a really smart kid until we realized ~90% of his speech is echolalia, immediate and delayed. I called SLPs who referred me to our pedi who in turn sent us to the developmental clinics at the local hospitals. After filling out the various packets outlining for us just how many ways our kiddo isn't typical, we received his ASD diagnosis from the neurologist at the autism center the day before he turned two. I was relieved when she looked at me in the first five minutes of his assessment and said, "You're right to be here." The diagnosis was confirmed two weeks later by a developmental pedi and a psychologist at the local children's hospital. ADOS Toddler came back in the moderate to severe range.

The various docs are recommending 25-30 hours of ABA a week, 1:1 SLT for pragmatics, OT for sensory integration, and a social skills group. We still haven't met with EI, although our assessment is next week. We never called before his neuro eval because he ostensibly wasn't delayed. Now we're scrambling to catch up with a confirmed diagnosis in hand. I'm scared they're going to come up extremely short on hours or deny him speech outright because he's verbal and we're going to have to fill the gap somehow. I'm more than ready to get started.

Thank you for reading. 
Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
11/10/10 The Kid

Re: ASD Intro.

  • Thank you for the welcome and the feedback, auntie! 

    Some of his echolalia is functional. "Hi, sweet cheeks. Do you have a dirty diaper?" he'll ask me. Well, no. I don't. But thanks for the heads up, kiddo. Much of the speech isn't functional, however, and I'm not sure how the behaviorists and the speech therapists strike a balance between discouraging non-functional scripts (book recitations) while using his considerable rote capability to teach him useful speech. It's going to be difficult to see them try to quash certain expressions of his memory when we view it as one of his best assets. 

    I'm at home with him, so I'll be with him for all of the sessions. I'm looking forward to learning the techniques the different therapists have to offer. Special education preschool through our district is a year off, when he turns three. I've already lined up intake appointments to interview a couple of specialty service ABA/floor time providers with the EI social worker's blessing since we have our diagnosis. I have more phone calls to make before our sit down to try to suss out who has the ability to provide the most hours. EI cautioned at our initial meeting that they don't want to rush the kid at first, preferring to limit him to a couple of hours a day. The psych told us he can take and requires a lot more, that it's easier to throttle back hours than it is to add them. My sleep is suffering until we get through that evaluation and hammer out the IFSP.


    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
    11/10/10 The Kid
  • Welcome. My DD1 was dx'd with autism at three. We had the hyperlexic tendencies and lots of echolalia as well. Hers is pretty functional, for the most part -- so until she starts repeating a phrase, or she says the same thing under the same circumstances several times, or she changes a phrase but always uses the same inflection she heard in a movie, a lot of people don't recognize it. 

    It sounds like you're really on top of things, that's great! We're a very supportive group over here with a significant number of kiddos on the spectrum. 


    DD1, 1/5/2008 ~~~ DD2, 3/17/2010
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  • Thanks, lite-bright. I look forward to getting to know the group better. BK2 steered me over here and I'm glad she did. 

    This whole thing has moved extremely fast. Keeping busy helps me hold it together. 
    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
    11/10/10 The Kid
  • Hi and welcome! Wow, your DS sounds almost exactly like my DD! The good news for you is he is only 2. DD was 3 when we got the dx. So that is good! DD is very verbal but mostly it is scripting. When she came back as severe speech delay (1 percentile) we were shocked. 

    Sounds like you are on track. There is lots of great advice here. Welcome and good luck!

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