i have a 4yr lod son with autism, all day he is on the go. he wakes at 5am and does not go down till 7pm i have 2yr old twins and begining to find life unbearable please tell me whay i can do,,,,,,he does not talk and grunts ,makes odd noises.
I presume he is in a special needs nursery?
Do you have a Statement of Special Educational Needs? If not you need to get one.
There are a couple of things you can do if you are in the UK.
Firstly you can contact the National Autistic Society for some advice from them. They have helplines, parent to parent lines, educational helplines, educational tribunal supports.
You can also contact your local education authority and get the telephone number of the Parent Partnership in your area. They can help you work through the process of anything related to your child. They can go with you to meetings and take notes on what is said. They can advise you on IEPs (individual education plans) to ensure that school is doing them correctly.
You can contact Umbrella through Social Services and they can come and assess you to match you to a volunteer who will come and spend time with your son once every 2-3 weeks so that you can do other stuff.
As he is not talking at all yet, I would advise you also ask Social Services to come and do a caregivers assessment to see if they can help you at all.
Do you have a partner or family that can take the load sometimes?
I would also recommend you find a local Parent Support Group, especially if it is one that has a social side to it so that the children can get together and do their thing. Usually this involves meeting somewhere so that the children can go into a soft play type of environment.
You have got 3 children under 4. I think you need to start shouting for any help and support that is available. It will get better, but in the meantime you need to make sure you stay healthy and sane.
Hopefully, through the above you will find some useful information and practical support.
thank you very much.x. i will use your info, he is being statemented as we speak i am very concerned about his futureand safety. i find it hard to mix with other people and tend to keepp myself to myself. i did shout out for help, that is how i got him diagnosed so soon this is all to much for me and i feel as though i want to die, i do not have any family who i would trust with him, only my older daughter but she has to have her life,i am feeling very withdrawn again and want to be happy for my family.........i am exhausted very exhausted.thank you again.x
As you are in the statementing process, please make sure you contact the national autistic society for their advice BEFORE you agree the final statement. Do you have a copy of the Code of Practice that accompanies the Statement? In the CoP it tells you everything that should be in the Statement. The LEA will try to keep stuff out, because the Statement is a legal document and everything in it HAS to be provided BY LAW. The Statement should not contain words like 'significantly more help', or 'regular speech therapy', or 'reviewed at regular intervals' etc. The CoP says that Statements have to be specific and quantify and specify in terms of staffing arrangements and hours of provision.
I had an Educational Tribunal for my son on 27th January, and we got everything we were asking for.
My son is mainstream in an Enhanced Resource school that has experience and expertise in autism. His particular class is mainly children with learning difficulties or on the autistic spectrum. An example of the level of provision he has in his statement is:
"XXXX will receive a minimum of 6 hours direct Speech and Language Therapy each term from a fully qualified and experienced Speech and Language Therapist, reviewed in line with the SEN Annual Review process. This equates to approximately twelve 30 minute sessions per term to be delivered weekly or as agreed with Yiannis’ parents and school staff in order to best meet Yiannis’ changing needs.
XXXXX’s Speech & Language Therapist will compile a speech and language therapy programme to be delivered by a Teaching Assistant throughout the week on a daily basis, with the Speech and Language Therapist adjusting the programme as required following the speech and language therapy session that she has delivered. This session will be observed by a Teaching Assistant who will be delivering the programme throughout the rest of the week.
In addition to direct therapy the Speech and Language Therapist will do the following:
• Observe XXXXX's functional communication outside of therapy sessions;
• Liaise with school staff and parents;
• Be invited to attend the Annual Review and provide an updating report beforehand;
• Write notes, reports and treatment programmes;
• Contribute towards the MEP targets.
This should take approximately 9 hours per term.
XXXXX's Speech and Language Therapy support will focus on the following areas:
• Speech - through auditory discrimination
• Extending Yiannis’ Semantic development
• Developing his understanding of different sentence structures
• Extending narrative skills.
• Developing his Verbal Reasoning
• Developing his phonological awareness skills
• Social communication skills
XXXXX will attend a weekly social communication skills group which will be planned with advice from a Speech and Language Therapist. Such a programme should be extended to include developing Yiannis’ range of communication acts as well as the above areas. It is vital that Yiannis is helped to use language to initiate play with his peers. Developing the use of scripts to help Yiannis know how to use language appropriately for this situation and other social situations is recommended.
The Speech and Language Therapist will need to work closely with parents, school staff and the multi-agency team to ensure skills are embedded in the curriculum and generalised across settings. It is recommended that a framework such as SCERTS (Social Communication, Emotional Regulation and Transactional Support), Prizant et al 2006, is used to ensure all Yiannis’ needs within his diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder are met and prioritized appropriately.
And that is just part of a 10 page document. If you feel that that is more specific and indepth than what they are proposing to put in the Statement for your son, then if you send me a PM with your email address I will send you a copy of the whole document, so that you have an idea of what it should entail.
Your son sounds more severe than mine, so his level of provision should be greater.
You need the Statement to be specific so that if the school is not doing what it should do you can take them to a tribunal. If everything is general, you will never be able to prove they aren't sticking to it. You also need it specific so that you can see whether a specified level of provision is having an effect. If it isn't then the provision needs to be greater.
Please follow through the avenues I suggested. The NAS and Social Services in particular. If you feel you are starting with depression, then I would visit the doctor. You might need medication for a while, but it won't last for ever and things will get better. This is just a very hard time and you are physically and mentally exhausted.
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