My 13 year old daughter has just been diagnosed with HFA/ Aspergers.
Whilst pleased to have a diagnosis, am not really sure what to do next. Diagnosis done privately so have full report which is helpful. Obviously need to set up meeting with school and share the recommendations but we have some questions and uncertainties and would really welcome advice or experience from others. Daughter is fairly self-aware, expert at masking and refusing assistance. She is at a selective school, but now struggling as studies become more independent and inference-driven. Immediate questions are:
1. Do we share the report with her in its entirety? It is 17 pages long. Or summarise in simplified language. She really enjoyed the assessment process and felt able to confide in the specialist about her social anxieties (which was delighted about). Do we use the correct terms or just refer to problems with social interaction?
2. The report recommends a peer at school as a "mentor"/ helper to assist with social interaction and fitting in. It is a girls school and knowing teenage girls I am concerned about this. Am worried about whether this would isolate her among her peers - girls can be v mean f they sense weakness
3. Do we tell her v bright younger brother?
4 She is in GCSE Option Choosing period. Currently she is not performing well at school. Homework is not completed and she does not know how to learn - it seems to me. But she has the most amazing memory. Do we allow her present selective school a period to take on board specialists recommendations and change/ adapt / support teaching style for her or should we be moving her to a less academic school? I am concerned as transition and change has been highlighted as a big issue for her so not keen to move her, nor to leave her in an environment where her Head of year (knowing that she was going for assessments said t me "She just needs to GROW UP!"
Any other insights gratefully received
Post-diagnosis can be a very nervous time for any parent, but we're here to help you. In this link you can find information on the effects on your family, getting some practical support as well as telling your child about their diagnosis.
If you have any other questions, or wanted some advice, you may like to contact our Autism Helpline team. They can provide you with information and advice on your issue. You can call them on 0808 800 4104 (Monday to Thursday 10am to 4pm, Friday 9am to 3pm).Please note that the Helpline is experiencing a high volume of calls and it may take a couple of attempts before you get through to speak to an advisor.
I hope this helps,