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      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   06/04/2017

      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   Depression and other mental health difficulties are common amongst people on the autistic spectrum and their carers.   People who are affected by general mental health difficulties are encouraged to receive and share information, support and advice with other forum members, though it is important to point out that this exchange of information is generally based on personal experience and opinions, and is not a substitute for professional medical help.   There is a list of sources of mental health support here: <a href="http://www.asd-forum.org.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=18801" target="_blank">Mental Health Resources link</a>   People may experience a more serious crisis with their mental health and need urgent medical assistance and advice. However well intentioned, this is not an area of support that the forum can or should be attempting to offer and we would urge members who are feeling at risk of self-harm or suicide to contact either their own GP/health centre, or if out of hours contact NHS Direct on 0845 4647 or to call emergency services 999.   We want to reassure members that they have our full support in offering and seeking advice and information on general mental health issues. Members asking for information in order to help a person in their care are seeking to empower both themselves and those they represent, and we would naturally welcome any such dialogue on the forum.   However, any posts which are deemed to contain inference of personal intent to self-harm and/or suicide will be removed from the forum and that person will be contacted via the pm system with advice on where to seek appropriate help.   In addition to the post being removed, if a forum member is deemed to indicate an immediate risk to themselves, and are unable to be contacted via the pm system, the moderating team will take steps to ensure that person's safety. This may involve breaking previous confidentiality agreements and/or contacting the emergency services on that person's behalf.   Sometimes posts referring to self-harm do not indicate an immediate risk, but they may contain material which others find inappropriate or distressing. This type of post will also be removed from the public forum at the moderator's/administrator's discretion, considering the forum user base as a whole.   If any member receives a PM indicating an immediate risk and is not in a position (or does not want) to intervene, they should forward the PM to the moderating team, who will deal with the disclosure in accordance with the above guidelines.   We trust all members will appreciate the reasoning behind these guidelines, and our intention to urge any member struggling with suicidal feelings to seek and receive approproiate support from trained and experienced professional resources.   The forum guidelines have been updated to reflect the above.   Regards,   The mod/admin team

krystaltps

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  1. (teachers dont teach you anything)

    Ohhhh, this is a tricky one. I am a parent of a child with AS first and foremost, then I am a teacher of children with complex needs (including autistic children). I like to think I am good at being both a parent and a SEN teacher. I can totally see where Mumble is coming from - as the title of the post immediately caught my attention and "got my back up". I feel very strongly about general "teacher-bashing" too, Mumble. However, I do agree with Andrea on some accounts, as I lived through a year with my son when he had an absolutely appalling teacher... when I felt very angry - I still struggle to even speak to her when I meet her at in-service days, etc. But I think Karen makes a very valid point in that Andrea hasn't been posting long, and I'm sure no offence was meant to the "good guys" in our profession. I'm also sure I probably made some unintentional generalisations when I started posting - I very nearly did it last week in reference to hospital office staff... then edited my post to correct my generalisation.
  2. I posted about this about a year ago, after I'd been to see a Tony Attwood talk. C was born with a normal-sized head, but by 8wks, he was referred to a paed to investigate his abnormally large head circumference. By 4 months, his measurements were off the scale and he had developed a marked head-lag due to being unable to hold up his head as a result of the sheer size and weight of it. By 2yrs, his head circumference was bigger than mine. He also still has a very noticeable ridge down the centre. R had to come out the "emergency exit" as his head was too big to come out the usual route at birth. His head circumference has always been slightly smaller than C's, but he also has plagiocephaly (flat at the back on the right-hand side). Although R isn't dx as being on the spectrum, as he gets older, his AS traits are becoming much more apparent (as he spends less time with his totally NT twin sister, who has always been his role-model for social behaviour). Interestingly, R's EEG (he has epilepsy) showed abnormal activity focalised in the right parietal lobe (where his head is flat). His MRI also showed structural abnormalities of the right frontal lobe (which ties in with Flora's post). Also, we have noticed that after a bad night of seizures, R's behaviour is distinctly more ASD-ish, and he has long episodes of echolalia and palalalia the following day. I have no doubt, with regard to my two boys, that head size, shape, and brain structure are all related to AS and ASD traits.
  3. MRI scan.

    I agree with Karen - if you had not explained your concerns and J did not lie still for the duration of the scan, they would be even more annoyed. Being annoyed is what some hospital office staff do best, anyway (in my experience)... so don't worry. R had an MRI when he was 5 yrs, and because of his age a general anaesthetic was arranged, and as we stay on an island, they had booked him into the ward to stay overnight. We were very lucky in that there was a cancellation for after R's slot, so they thought they'd try him first without GA as they had plenty of time incase it failed and they needed to use GA afterall. Amazingly, he fell asleep - he'd been starved in preparation for GA, and we'd gotten the earliest ferry off the island - 6.30am... no wonder he was so exausted really. So he lay like a little mouse for the full 50 mins (his was a brain scan). I doubt you and J will get so lucky (the staff were amazed when they came back into the room afterwards to find R asleep, apparently it's unheard of!), but they can give older children mild sedatives instead of GA - perhaps you could ask about that.
  4. Flying with AS child

    This is a useful topic for me at the moment - were taking our lot to Florida in July and C has never flown before. He's obsessed with Pokemon games on his DS, and he'll be taking his PSP too. So, the combination of these two should help keep him amused.... but I'm worried his anxiety levels will hit the roof. He's already stressing about flying, especially for such a long time and over so much ocean. He's into statistics and is reeling off airline disaster stats (much to the upset of the twinkles). According to his psych, it's all he's talking about during their sessions. I'm seriously thinking about asking for a mild sedative or something for the flight... has anyone else ever been prescribed something for while they are flying?
  5. YES!!! It was as if he just didn't have the patience... he seemed to know what it was all about, and fussed to get latched on, but wanted it to happen instantly. He would end up screaming and going rigid... and I would end up feeling such a failure. I tried to explain to the midwife that it wasn't working, but she said to just keep trying - even though she had spent hours trying to latch him on for me... By the end of the second week, he'd lost 25% of his birth weight, and we admitted defeat. I expressed for as long as I could, then moved him onto formula. I blamed myself because he was my first. The experience was so awful that I didn't even attempt it with my twinkles. Interesting thread, this one.... I hadn't even thought it may have been related to his AS. Funny though, he was a nightmare to feed once he was weaned: when he wasn't insisting on doing it for himself and ending up feeding his eye and blaming me, DH was having to perform a cabaret act behind me to distract him from the evil task of eating... And all meals had to start with pureed carrot or he wasn't eating anything at all. Then he gave up milk entirely at 7 months but refused to drink water or juice.... I ended up feeding him watery fruit purees for fluid and custard for calcium. Looking back, it's amazing he grew at all, lol.
  6. Melatonin - Urgent!!!

    Hi, we split the capsules open too. It's not that C can't or wont swallow them, it's that he's too impatient to wait an hour before they work. He gets two capsules (4mg) dissolved into fruit juice each school night and he's asleep 10-30 minutes later (depending on how active his mind is and how relaxed he is after taking them). When he first started, one capsule was sufficient - so I think it probably had such a fast effect on your DS because he's never had melatonin before, so his system is more sensitive to it - apparently size and body weight isn't much of a factor. Word of warning - try to give him one or two nights a week without the melatonin, as his body will get used to it and he'll need bigger doses. It's amazing how quickly this can happen. We take C off them entirely during school holidays, and over the course of a school term he goes from 1, to 2 capsules and then right near the end of the term he's needing 3 - and that's with weekend breaks.
  7. new words

    Oh, I like this thread - this is C's speciality. He has been playing with words since he was 3 years old. All of his words are fantastic, and have become regular parts of family vocabulary. Spotten - applied to the twinkles, meaning spoiled rotten Bumpop - flatulence Pokeynut - an insult, as in "You are a Pokeynut" Underbelly - one's bottom Construnctions - the bit in the box of chocolates that tells you what flavour they all are He also uses old-fashioned words such as pataloons (meaning his underpants). There are loads more, I just can't remember them all at the moment.
  8. Autism support dogs

    I remember looking into this a couple of years back when I posted looking for advice about getting a dog as a companion for C. The system seems to be really big in the USA. I would recommend a lab as a companion. I have a beagle and a shih-tzu (the latter is my DD's), the beagle having been bought for C as his new friend. It didn't work. Despite the fact that beagles in general are supposed to be very good with children, Buttons is petrified of C because of C's flapping and noise. He starts shivering and growling when C goes near him, and as a result C hates him. BUT... my sis's labs - well, they're a totally different story. They love him, particularly the younger one, they seek him out when my sis brings them round to visit, they simply move calmly out of his way when he's having an outburst. The older one even let us know one night when R was about to start having a seizure: she cried to get out of the room, went upstairs and sat at the foot of his bed... two minutes later, R's seizure began. They really are amazing dogs. I agree with Sue - my sis's labs are from a working strain... they are so much more placid, confident, and easier to train than labs bred for showing.
  9. Eye contact

    Hi all, not been around much lately, have been busy, but thought I'd pop in and ask a question. I was speaking to C's teacher today (he'd had a meltdown during golden-time and she was filling me in on the facts), and she said a really interesting thing about C's eye-contact. He stares at you intently when you are talking to him - it's so intense, it can make you want to look away. This is so true, although I had never really put it into words before, because you are always asked about lack of eye-contact, and I always reply "Oh, C's fine in that respect". But I had never thought about it from the opposite perspective. Does anyone else find this with their ASD kids?
  10. too friendly?

    C isn't touchy-feely (quite the opposite in fact), but he is very outgoing. He is usually (depending on mood) one of the first to approach new people, but he can do so inappropriately, comes across as too intent and unwittingly scares people away. If he decides he really likes you and wants you as a friend, then we have "stalker syndrome" to deal with. He blew his first proper friendship in this way last year and we're hoping he has learned from that. It's a bit of a thought... what will he be like in this respect when he's a teenager and decides he likes a girl . I suppose - why can't you have ASD people who are introverts and are extroverts just like everyone else... I think that's all it boils down to, really.
  11. national curriculum not working for us Highlands

    Hi, can I ask which Local Authority you live in, Sesley? In Scotland, we don't have a National Curriculum - that's one of the beauties of Scottish Education - however it does trust that LA's, schools and teachers "know what they're doing". A good LA will provide access to training for the staff who work with your son, and it should also provide access to experienced and trained educational specialists. In my LA we have Area Network Support Teams (of which I am a teaching member) and each member of the team has a specialist area (i.e. the additional support need in which they specialise). If we come across something new, there is a large CPD (training) budget to cover the cost of training courses. Does your lad have a Support Plan or Co-ordinated Support Plan? It sounds as if he should at the very least have a SP. Is the class-teacher in charge of the SP? All of this is not specific to my LA, other LAs in Scotland will have similar provision. The Additional Support for Learning Act (Scotland) has given you, as a parent, rights... and there are tribunals happening all over Scotland at the moment as parents are exercising these rights. Because where I live is geographically large and mostly rural, we have children in our schools that would be in specialist schools if they lived elsewhere. These children are accomodated in mainstream (with the exception of "my boys", who are not in classes) and their needs are met. That's the important part - the needs being met. If they are not then you have cause for complaint... no matter how hard the teachers are trying, it's the LA that's letting you down by the sound of it. If you need any advice on the ASfL act, or anything else then please PM me.
  12. One word association

    hall (as in at school)
  13. One whole year

    Happy Anniversary, Clare! It is a great place to be, isn't it?
  14. Stress relief

    With C, if it's sensory overload - total peace and quiet, no interuptions until he emerges. If it's general stress and hassle, I like to go for a drive - just me, Graham (that's my car... don't laugh, all my cars have had names) and music... but only when DH is home from the rig (otherwise I'd have to take the kids with me and that would defeat the purpose). Alternatively - Sudoku... relaxes me so much I fall asleep.
  15. Really silly etiquette

    Then there's the loo roll issue! Which way to hang it - one way is seen as correct but I can't remember which one. Personally I like to hang it so the hanging-down bit is nearer the wall... actually it's a bit of a bug-bear with me as I usually "fix" my mum's when I'm round visiting.
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