I finally took the Lego Master to the local children’s hospital for an eval. I’ve been concerned about his anxiety level for a while, and when I saw him starting with some OCD-type behaviors last fall, I decided to see if I could get some help. Not because I don’t know how to help him cope with anxiety, but because he usually will not allow me to make any suggestions to him about what he might do. If it comes from my lips, it’s verboten. He needs to believe it’s his idea before he can do anything. This gets olds really fast, but after 8 years of dealing with it, well, it’s to be expected now. No use expecting a fish to fly.
First I took him to see his doctor. Now I like this doc about as much as I’m going to like any conventional doctor, but after 35 years of working with kids, you’d think he’d be a little more understanding that some kids are just wired differently, not just jerks. But his suggestion was more discipline. He even suggested homeschooling him was a “failure” because LM has such trouble controlling himself sometimes. I beg to differ. How many 9 year olds do you know that teach themselves “Google Sketch” in 2 days? My solution is usually more understanding and strategies. So I was firm about a referral. Of course he steered us in the wrong direction and I ended up at the unit that deals with kids on the spectrum. Okay, more phone tag and explaining myself over and over. *sigh* FINALLY we ended up in the peds neurological unit with an appt. in 7 weeks. They asked for a summary from the doc and I ignored them.
The day of the appt. Lego Master was scared and excited. But he controlled himself well and the NP offered me some interesting insight into his behavior. She felt that most of what is happening with him…. lack of cooperation, explosions, refusing to ride in the car, freaking out over little things, not controlling himself, etc is really all stemming from anxiety and OCD. She said his NO NO NO NO is really a compulsive behavior. Not unlike washing his hands a million times. He feels compelled to be oppositional as a way to control his anxiety. Okay. I totally get this. I have know this for a long time. No is his way of controlling his world. But I never really thought to look at it through the lens of OCD and an anxiety disorder. Humph.
She recommended a combination of Cognitive Behavior Therapy and meds. I rejected SSRIs as a first choice based on his fathers strange and intense reactions to SSRIs. We’ll try something less risky first.
Oh, and the NP gave him some “Buckyballs” to play with. Tiny super magnetized balls. And he promptly made a pyramid with them! That’s my Lego Master!