Intro - DS with anxiety diagnosis — The Bump
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Intro - DS with anxiety diagnosis

Hi everyone - I have lurked here for a while, knowing that something about my 3.5 year old DS1 was different since he was about 15-18 months old.  He just always has a rough time transitioning and engaging in new experiences or activities, which was easy to previously be confused about what was the terrible twos, and what wasn't.  He has delayed speech, and is very anxious all the time, needing our reassurance over and over on everyday activities. He is a happy boy when he has our attention,  but really becomes unhappy and lashes out when we participate in a new activity, go to a new friend's house, or have friends over, and our attention is diverted.  He hates/refuses to take pictures, which makes me insane.  Christmas was a doozy, and I'm trying my best to keep my patience.  He was in EI for speech from right after 2 years old to just before 3, and has placed out of speech services now. We just initiated another IU eval, due to his preschool teacher's recommendation, and we just received the eval results back 3 days ago with an "Emotion Disturbance: Anxiety" diagnosis.  We're now waiting to have his IEP meeting after the new year.  I am looking forward to helping him.   I really struggle with him - how to discipline, how to approach new situations with him, and how to help him overall.  I love him to pieces, but I'm also at the end of my rope a lot of the time, and feeling like wherever we go, he's "that kid", and he ,makes a lot of things that should be fun stressful and exhausting.  Sorry for the vent.  Thanks for listening :)  Anyone else have similar issues?
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Re: Intro - DS with anxiety diagnosis

  • Yes. Similar issues, but we don't have a diagnosis yet. We started seeing a therapist but haven't had enough sessions yet to figure out what's up. He does have SPD and is in OT but I feel like there is more going on and anxiety runs in my family.
  • bethann3181bethann3181
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    edited December 2013
    Hi Auntie - thanks for your follow up and questions!  I contacted a Developmental Ped (I also live outside of Philadelphia, and we're going through CHOP) back in September, and we were told it's a year wait.  Which is fine - by that time he'll be 4.5, and have been receiving services for his anxiety for several months, so maybe it will be easier to pinpoint any other issues.  Both times he was evaluated by the EI and IU teams, ASD has been ruled out.  I guess it could still present itself later though.  

    He is a good eater, and always was (he used to eat anything, and has gotten a little bit pickier since he was about 2.5, but nothing that doesn't seem normal for that age).  He's fine with any types of clothing, nothing like that seems to bother or affect him.  He is bothered by loud noises, and always has been.  I can totally relate to the post above about hand dryers in public places.  He used to cover his ears when we'd run the blender, vacuum, or hair dryer.  He has gotten better about all of those things, but we were out today, and in the bathroom they had the Xelorator hand dryers, and we had to use paper towels instead.  

    Can I ask how ASD presented itself in your DS?  I struggle sometimes when I listen to symptoms of ASD - some of them seem like normal "kid" things.  I still struggle with the with my DS - I have a hard time differentiating if he's been goofy and quirky, or if something is a symptom of a larger issue.
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  • Oh, also DS is hit or miss with friends/peers.  He has always preferred adults, but since he started preschool in Sept, he is more interested in playing with kids his age.  He's also been playing more and more with his 21 month old brother too, which is really nice.  However, he is still pretty hesitant in a new setting, or with new peers.  He doesn't seek them out unless they show interest in doing what he's interested in doing.
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  • BrewtowngrlBrewtowngrl
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    edited December 2013
    DS has SPD, ADHD/ADD and anxiety.  As Auntie said anxiety really seams to lead.  We had to prepare him for days for big outings.  Not knowing better we took the kids to Disney World when he was 4.  He just could not handle it.  DS went to private OT and it made a world of difference for both him and I.  I needed the education on how to handle situations as well as DS.  So many places don't include the parents enough and it drives me crazy.  I was in every session unless I was aggravating that situation.  

    We were denied an IEP through the school system.  Their reasoning was not valid and I could still challenge it, but I am glad we are going with a 504 at this point.  Having an IEP for a child with mainly emotional/behavioral  issues can be a challenge when trying to get into classes down the road.  DS wears noise cancelling headphones in the lunch room because it is too loud.  He can opt out of assemblies because there are too many people.  

    Discipline is so hard.  We have a chill out area.  It has a tent, a big pillow and a few non destructive activities he can do.  His OT went over the rules for chill out.  If I would have given the rules it would have never flown with him.  Once he is over his behavior we can talk about it or just move on. 

    DS did start meds this summer, but I don't know how that works with a child with a single Dx.  DS was miserable and even told us he didn't like his behavior, but couldn't help it.  I think that was more of his ADHD/ADD.  
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  • edited December 2013
    Oh, also DS is hit or miss with friends/peers.  He has always preferred adults, but since he started preschool in Sept, he is more interested in playing with kids his age.  He's also been playing more and more with his 21 month old brother too, which is really nice.  However, he is still pretty hesitant in a new setting, or with new peers.  He doesn't seek them out unless they show interest in doing what he's interested in doing.

    This sounds exactly like my dd with asd. She loves playing with her brother, prefers adults, likes same age peers that are very familiar, but will only join in highly preferred play activities with new peers/in new environments. Really the only signs of autism my kid has is struggles socially, language delayed, and has repetitive movements in the form of self stimulating behavior. Otherwise she has zero "typical" signs of autism. She speaks in words to communicate, no echolalia, uses pronouns properly, answers yes/no questions. She pretend plays and plays with toys in a variety of ways which she is always expanding on--none of the scripted play or obsession with the parts typical in autism. She is social with me and frequently initiates play or social games and is receptive when I come over and join in her play. She's affectionate (and not just on her own terms--she's receptive when others initiate) with preferred people, easygoing, and has no difficulties at home with transitions or changes in routine.
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