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gamble
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12 Sep 2011, 11:57 am

My son is 12 1/2 and I am trying to learn AS. He was finally diagnosed age 11. I'm finding that his school, his peers, law enforcement does not understand Aspergers. I'm considering a medical id bracelet but reading these posts most people don't feel it is a good idea. Why? I don't want to make my son feel disabled but the school and law enforcement have handled him exactly opposite of what they should be doing. Last week he tried to retreat - exactly what I've been trying to teach him- from the playground after being hit by a ball (very sensative to touch by people or items but not material. Has acted very aggressive in the past when a situation upsets him and we have been working on ways to handle it before he gets physical or meltsdown.) He went into the cafeteria and sat down by himself away from everyone. The after school worker began to approach him immediatley trying to tell him it was an accident no one deliberately meant to hurt him with the ball. He kept expressing his need to be alone but she did not listen. She then went and got all the kids he was playing with they surrounded him and began apologizing which made it ten times worse. He then ran outside to get away and the workers called the front office and principal and teachers began chasing him, tackled him, held him down carried him to the office etc. I was called and when I arrived he was in total shutdown (on a chair in the corner of the room with his back facing everyone rolling around sobbing saying taking me home, take me home crying for his father that is in another state and that he hasn't seen in years). To me he just wanted to be as far away from that situation as possible. They had checked his medical file and mysteriously his diagnosis wasn't in his file. The fact I had went in had a meeting with the school guidance office all of his teachers etc explaining AS, not in file!! !! I applied for a 504 plan at school last year and was denied. (He is on meds for the ADHD components which help him tremendously with the structured portion of his day and his ability to focus.) I feel like they didn't believe me because they don't see him outside the structured environment and they do not spend one on one time talking with him to see how he thinks or interprets. I bet he will be getting a 504 plan now. Anyways the four people in the room with him when I arrived new nothing about an aspergers child. So even if they seen that diagnosis in his file they wouldn't have known what to do. I decided to type a list of information up for the school for his file but what about other situations. I can't go everywhere with him at all times. He is becoming a teen and I am so concerned. Besides school what about paramedics, law enforcement, etc? Articles that I have read state that bracelets are looked at way before necklaces or wallet info might be. I am trying to teach him what to say so they understand his need for space and not to touch him but it is going to take some time before he will articulate it to someone correctly and effectively. He currently yells- please just leave me alone and waves his arms around. I know I have to spend more time teaching him the appropriate words to use hand motions to use etc. when a meltdown is starting. Once he is in full meltdown he won't speak or begins to scream very profane language. It has only been a year since he was diagnosed and I need to learn to much. I don''t want him tasered or arrested because they don't understand him.

I looked for answers as to what was wrong for years and have been told everything - nothing was wrong with him, he was spoiled, he was a brat, he had ODD, he had ADHD, he was crazy, he was evil, etc. His diagnosis now is Aspergers with ADHD tendacies, PTSD and depression. I wish I had his diagnosis years ago. He is almost 13 and we have just begun.

Medical bracelet for
now???



annotated_alice
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14 Sep 2011, 5:04 pm

I don't see a problem with medic alert bracelets for autism/aspergers. My sons have medic alert bracelets primarily because of their anaphylactic allergies, but they also say aspergers on them. The bracelets will work in an emergency situation to quickly communicate to doctors/paramedics/police what the person's medical needs are. Very helpful if they were ever hurt or in trouble and couldn't communicate.

However in the situation you described with the school, I'm not sure a medic alert would help in any way?

And also, welcome to WP! :)



momsparky
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14 Sep 2011, 5:08 pm

I'm so sorry, gamble - we had a similar situation; DS had a 504 and a diagnosis, but it wasn't taken seriously by the school until they had to put him on suicide watch. He'd previously been violent, but had not hurt anyone seriously, and it was random enough that it got ignored.

There's a thread on the subject of ways to inform the authorities here: http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt143958.html



lovelyboy
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15 Sep 2011, 3:33 am

This is a very upsetting and sad situation and experience!

I'm SO sorry that you and your son had to go through this! HUGS

I also think that a bracelet wouldn't work in the situation you explained, BUT I do think that it could be helpfull in emergencies!

Would it be possible to contact your Autism assosiation and maybe ask them (after you have spoken to the school) to come and give some inservice training at the school....

My son was wearing a bracelet for allergies....and what I did notice, was that it does remind staff and adults and even other children, that he needs to be treated in a different way (I mean this in a possitive way).....It's like a visual reminder!

Oh...the other thing I wanted to mention.....my son was also highly irritable, meltdowns, exct. He has been on strong dosage antidepressants for almost 3 months now and there is a HUGE improvement!! !! ! Maybe this could help?

Please let us know how things are going!


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Little dd has ADHD with loving personality and addores his older brother! Little dude diagnosed with SID and APD.
Oldest son, 10 yrs old, diagnosed with AS and anxiety and OCD traids


zette
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15 Sep 2011, 7:27 am

I have read of business cards your son could carry with him that he could hand to someone like the person in the cafeteria. It might say something like, "I have an autism disorder and may be unable to talk right now. I need quiet and privacy to calm myself. If this appears to be an emergency, please contact xxx."



DW_a_mom
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15 Sep 2011, 1:18 pm

Many of Wrong Planets adult members carry cards of the type Zette mentioned. I think there is a company on-line that sells them. The ones I've heard of say something like "I'm autistic and having a meltdown. Please do not attempt to talk to or comfort me.". Googling it I've found some very detailed versions designed for the police and hospitals, but those may be more than you want right now.

I think cards are a better solution because

A) They don't advertise the Autism until necessary, and
B) They tell people what to do.

Most people with ASD can think outside the meltdown long enough to pull out and hand over the card.


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Mom to an amazing AS son, who recently graduated from the university (plus an also amazing non-AS daughter). Most likely part of the "Broader Autism Phenotype" (some traits).