I try not to talk too much about this on the blog because well, I am wary of my daughter’s future, so I have already made a note on my calender to delete all these posts at a future point in time.
And so, if you’re a regular reader you’ll know about the issues we’ve had with Chloe. We strongly suspect Aspergers and I strongly suspect she suffers with some form of hyperactivity. Both of these issues, on a scale, rank fairly low, but throughout Chloe’s life they just keep causing problems. We can have a couple of weeks go past where we think we are imagining everything, followed by the month from hell with her.
A really brief run down of events to date in very basic form.
Social issues and bullying lead to my insistence that it wasn’t because other children were horrible (although actually some of them were), but that Chloe was unable to manage her relationships, and there was something about her that unwittingly making her a target for childhood banter. There were lots of issues that lead to us moving her to another school, but also to the involvement of an Educational Psychologist.
Chloe has been much better in nearly all areas of school life since we moved her, there’s no doubt it was the right move, there are still issues, but still, school is much better.
The Educational Psychologist did an observation of her at school and said in basic terms that she had seen signs of emotional and social issues but that they were being managed well by the school. Further discussion seemed to imply that she did agree that it was likely Aspergers, but as she was managing well at school, and the school were managing her well, that there was no further intervention needed by her at this time.
I have stayed closely in touch with the teacher and the School’s Special Educational Needs Officer (SENCO) and issues have been raised that are individually minor, but together, to me, raise a bigger concern. More on that later.
Meantime, Chloe’s behaviour at home has been appalling, stress levels are frequently sky high for everyone in the house. Let me be clear, Chloe is not a naughty child, but she is full of energy and so unable to settle to anything, ever (although as mentioned before, once in a blue moon she sits and does something for 15 minutes) but her energy levels are sky high. She hops around on the spot, and when like this is prone to irritating behaviour and spontaneous bursts of energy, which usually involve dive bombing her sister or trying to engage someone in an activity they don’t want to do. Combine this behaviour with an inability to take no for an answer and a total lack of empathy and life gets difficult.
I’m not even going to go into the panic attack aspects of life or other complications.
School holidays are my worst nightmare, I get incredibly stressed as it’s just not possible to keep her occupied all day, every day, her behaviour slips, she upsets her sister, won’t say sorry, it’s a circle that repeats itself over and over, all day. So I went to the school and asked for help.
They hooked us up with a Family Support Worker. Although she’s done some valuable work with Chloe on a one to one basis at school (which has helped us to see a bit more of what’s going on in that bright little mind), I feel the work she has been doing with us at home has been entirely useless. She refuses to accept what I’m saying about anything, glossing over it and suggesting rewards and taking her out to burn off some energy… well of course we’ve tried those things. In fact one of our worst periods ever was on holiday last year, out all day and every day… the behaviour was through the roof.
We’re in a calm ish patch at the moment…but I think I’m so used to the stress now some of it barely registers, we took the kids to the cinema yesterday, for two hours beforehand Chloe was absolutely out of control… we ended up shouting, she ended up crying and saying she couldn’t help getting over excited, I felt guilty because I know she can’t…. its not much fun really.
And so, having spoken to the School SENCO and the School Nurse, they have two suggestions, the first being that it’s time to get the GP involved, and secondly to have a round table with all professionals involved. I missed out much of the detail, but today Chloe’s teacher called me in and said she’d spotted a behaviour she thought would be worth mentioning to other professionals involved, which is great, but being the central point, the person who knows all the details from all the different professionals, becomes like juggling, trying to recall which professional said what, and what I need to tell all the others, and what I’ve already told them, it all gets a bit much at times so the round table meeting sounds helpful…
But the GP aspect I’m not so sure about. We need help with her for sure, I don’t want her childhood to consist solely of us moaning at her to try and calm down, or leave her sister alone, or whatever it is, but don’t get me wrong, the Aspergers side of her clearly doesn’t get affected by this sort of thing, but it really does upset me.
But if we take the GP path what then? Diagnosis has it’s benefits of course… least of all, just knowing, just having an answer, that would undeniably feel good. Of course, it may mean we get some more support that will actually help us.
But then she’s labelled for the rest of her life. Her teacher says that because she’s so capable, she will never need one to one help in the classroom so no one need ever know…but I don’t know, I have had others suggest we really shouldn’t.
And if she is hyperactive… would we want to medicate… no I’m not sure we do!
Really I don’t expect anyone to answer and tell me what to do, I’m just getting it out of my system by writing it down really but I’d love to hear from parents going through similar, because it feels like a constant battle and has done for years now. I don’t know where all this is going to end, or how it’s all going to end, or if she’ll grow out of the worst of it all, as I say, sometimes things are all completely normal (whatever that is)!