Getting Help with “ADHD” and “Autism”

Our son has been diagnosed with “ADHD” and “autism” and has an individualized education plan (IEP). I have found this useful in several ways:

He has adults with him every day who understand that his struggles are not “bad behavior.” Regardless of their framework, he is spared a punitive approach. (The alternative would have been punishment-and-reward “behavior modification,” which we knew would be confusing and unhelpful.)

It has meant more resources and less targeting by other children. For example, he was getting bullied for being “retarded,” but now he is on a “special education” bus that is much more relaxed and has an additional adult attending to the young people.

It would be great if he could discharge all his chronic distress, but that may not happen before he can get his shoes on at 7:45 on a Tuesday morning. So I like seeing what other people have figured out with children who have similar struggles. It helps me feel like I can make mistakes, change my mind, and try new things, so we don’t just have the same fight over and over, laying in more hurt in the same spot.

It is clear to me that these diagnoses don’t mean that he is not fully intact or intelligent or doesn’t have full access to discharge. We still do RC family work and special time and give him sessions at home. But they have helped me accept him the way he is and discharge on not “fixing” or “saving” him.

Things are loosening up around “neurological difference.” People are pushing against using medical intervention to “cure” those who are diagnosed. While their perspective doesn’t align perfectly with RC theory, it is more human than many others.

Our son’s behavior can be very challenging, and we’re glad to have a team of people helping him navigate the public school system as it gets tighter [less tolerant] and demands more conformity. It’s a contradiction [to distress] to break out of the isolation and shame and know that we have a team who loves him as he is. 


(Present Time 193, October 2018)

Last modified: 2022-12-25 10:17:04+00