ASD assessment- advice about my son please :)

Hi everyone! Smile

I haven't written on a forum before so hoepfully I am doing this right Undecided We have a lovely 10 year old boy who has always been very bright, has sepcific interests, e.g trains, minecraft (at the moment is cars, can't go anywhere with out him pointing out makes and models to me!) he has also always struggled to maintain friendships, he doesnt really get invited to parties and things and reccently has been having trouble being teased at school and says to me he feels like theres "something wrong with his personailty" (which breaks my heart) and school have expressed concerns about him fitting in. This has led to me writing on here really because for the last 6 months or so his meltdowns or tantrums at home have got much more frequent, possibly due to being upset over teasing at school or hormones possibly, but they are wearing us out he will scream and throw things, sometimes over unpredictable things i.e the other day his uncle made a joke that he thought he was being serious and teasing him and he just saw red and took over an hour to calm down. Generally at school he doesnt have these tantrums, his teacher describes him as 'quirky' and says his knowledge of science is incredible but he went on a school trip reccenty for two nights and she said he just kept on lashing out whenevr 'he didnt get his own way' and told her that he doesnt have any friends. Anyway to cut a long story short on others advice I asked his teacher if she thought it was worth assessing him, she said the paperwork was a lot and it takes so long to do that the best rout was thrugh the GP. My GPthen said that school usually bring an education psycholgist in first and so he was reluctant to refer.  He also said he sounds like he has an 'aspergers type personality' but this could well just be the way that he is and that going down the assessment route may label him and do 'more harm than good'. So we are at a loss really, obviously I dont want him to feel any more differant than he already does but I thought an asssesment may help his understanding of himself and also for us have some support becase these daily tantrums are getting us down, or whether we should leave it for now?

Sorry for rambling on anyway ha if anyone is still reading thanks very much and would so much appreciate any advice, Thanks! Laughing

  • My recommendation would be to go back to the gp or another gp in the practice and insist on a referral.  You need to see either a clinical psych or psychiatrist to get a formal diagnosis.  An ed psych is not qualified to do this.

    I think you need to find out before he starts secondary education.  The transition can be brutal for asd children if strategies are not in place to cater for there needs.

    Don't be fobbed off by your doctor's comments he is not is your shoes or your son's.  If he is diagnosed I would also make a formal complaint as undermining your concerns suggests that he doesn't understand asd and needs educating.

    In my opinion a label as your gp puts it is only negative if used in a negative way.  The positives are that you will have clarity in knowing what you are dealing with, and can educate yourself, your can get support for your child, and when he is older he can enter into relationships where his partner is aware of his behaviours and both can work out strategies to create a happy life together.  Not having a label negates all of these.  

    My son's like their label and are comfortable telling people they have aspergers.  Only once have they been called retard, and understand that remark came from ignorance, so we're not hurt by it.  On the whole people are eager to know more and once explained they are very supportive and welcoming.

  • Hi dollydaydream, your son does sound like he has traits, but the question is, does he have it? I think you have a right to know. Your son sounds a  bit like mine, who is high functioning ASD, especially with the interests, lack of social ability, and taking jokes seriously. I think it's worth getting checked out. We were referred to CAMHS (child adolescent mental health) via the speech therapists who thought my son's behaviour needed assessing. Maybe ask your GP for a referral to CAMHS who will assess him, and if they think he shows enough signs will then send him to a specialist clinic for autism assessment. It's worrying that they're in some way trying to put you off going, for fear of labelling him. Isn't it better to have that label, if indeed it is true, so you can understand him and he can get help, rather than NOT labelling him, and failing to understand his needs? Please push on for an assessment, because you have a right to know if your child is on the spectrum. 

  • thanks so much for your replies and advice Laughing

    I think I will go back next week and see a differant GP, be a bit more pushy and insist on a camhs referral, something is causing his frustrations if nothing else and like you say I am worried about his transition to secondary school if he doesn't recieve support.

    Thank you again x

  • Hi, Our sons school were the ones who asked us if we would like them to monitor our son for 2 weeks and create a written report detailing their findings.  I took this to the GP who then past this to CAMHS.  We have just received a diagnosis privately and are still waiting the actual NHS assessment.  We had to wait 4 months for an initial screening and the 30 minute meeting resulted in them saying they will refer our son for a full NHS assessment.  We received some forms to fill out and my patience wore thin so we went private.  This diagnosis has now been sent to the enrichment team at our sons school.  Our GP recommended we still send the forms back to the NHS as they will do an assessment and this would then allow access to other services through the NHS.   Our son is 17 years old and is veryhigh functional.  We have taken the diagnosis as a family fine and now understand some of the challenges faced.  Give your wonderful son all the love you can.  He needs this and I know how hard this can be for you.  My thoughts are with you.  It will get better.