Cliff Notes on Boo and the Autism thing

Boo was diagnosed with infantile autism and PDD NOS right before his third birthday in late 1994. He was also diagnosed with possible hearing loss, oppositional-defiant disorder, late developing boy syndrome and its variant, crazy competitive mother needs a life disorder, but none of those held water over the long run, did they, Ms. Harvard-Educated Pediatrician?


After four years of intensive and slap-dash ABA and other minor interventions (gfcf diet, FastForward, eeg biofeedback, a number of meds, auditory training,what else? I'm sure I've mislaid something), his diagnosis was changed to "moderate to severe language learning disability" by a pediatric neuropsychologist specializing in autism.

A change in diagnosis should not suggest no residua of autism. While he had no stimming or perseveration, his language and social delays were considerable; his gains were slow and hard-won. His deficits in these areas still scared me.

At eleven, his gains began to accelerate, for reasons that aren't entirely clear. (typical adolescent frontal-lobe development? years of good intervention paying off? the intervention of Mother Theresa?)

Now in high school, he's a normal freshman, receiving minimal assistance (1-2 hours a week) at school with complex reading assignments. Because of this assistance and minor oddities in prosody, I don't consider him completely indistinguishable from his peers. I'm a hardass that way. I do consider him a miracle - he has friends, he skateboards, rows, and skis, he plays in a jazz band, and he's the happiest and most loving teenager I know. And yes, I consider him recovered. I am an unabashed curebie.

Anyway, it was quite a trip and I'm still unpacking. And so, the blog.

And in case no one has said it lately, thanks, Catherine Maurice.

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