Hi, this is my first post but I really need help. My daughter is 14 and we've always believed that she was on the spectrum but as she was high functioning and just a little 'quirky' we never realised any benefits to getting a diagnosis. The in June 2016 life started getting really tricky for her. It's a long story and it has been awful. She remains wonderful, gentle and kind a truly gorgeous person but she has suffered terrible problems since entering High School, bullying, loneliness, she was encouraged to kill herself by a 'friend' in messages. We've had police involvement, arguments with school, CAHMS and the education psychologist. They said I had a problem and needed anger management but people were still refusing to do anything because her grades were too high and she hides it so well in public but at home the anxiety was slowly killing her. My baby has now had a breakdown, she's not been in school since June, she can't dress or feed herself, she's completely crippled by anxiety and terrified by even her own sneeze. She's now medicated and not responding on a cocktail of Sertraline, Loraxepam and Resperidone. She has always suffered terrible separation anxiety when away from me and home sickness when we're away together. We've stuck to the same holiday destination for 8 years because she's comfortable there. We've always adapted to her and she's best when she's with me. There is now a lot of pressure to admit her to a specialist unit where they can be more experimental with drugs and offer intensive counselling (she's never responded to counselling in the past). I'm refusing to let her go, I'll do whatever it takes to look after her, I'll take her to day patient appointments, I'll nurse her I'll chop my arm off if it helps but they want her in for an initial 6-8 weeks assessment period when they'll then tell me how long they want to keep her. My gut tells me it would kill her and be the worse thing for her. How would she ever forgive me or me myself. My husband is starting to come round to their way of thinking. School is the issue and I'd happily home school but he doesn't agree. I need some honest advice, am I being unreasonable? Would the best thing to be to let her go? She's not responding to drugs so far. She barely speaks and simply answers 'don't know' to everything. CAHMS says she has strong autistic traits but they're not able to diagnose so they're just treating the anxiety.
Hello Mummy Lion I just wanted to say hello and am very thankful that you have got some very practical replies from other mums in similar situations. My story is much more similar to Spotty Tortoise in that I have suffered with depression and anxiety from an early life which wouldn't have been recognised as such back then Im 55 now. I had more than one breakdown (in teens and twenties)during that time to the extent that I can't remember much about them. I know family say my speech clamped up and became very slow as were my reactions.But over time and with care from my family I did recover sufficiently to carry on with my life. I have been on a series of antidepressants and have had counselling over the years in one form or purpose or another. As we know everyone is an individual but I personally didn't find antidepressants helpful and in some cases made me feel worse and cbt didn't work for me either. And I can't document it but have heard that people with autism can react differently to medication. so it does concern me as others have said that they want to experiment with different drugs. The counselling ranged from awful to excellent and have had a couple of really good intuitive counsellors/psychologists but training and experience are both equally important. Also counselling is exhausting and draining. You actually have to be well enough to have counselling and this doesn't sound the case with your daughter. If you are lucky counselling can be helpful but if you are not it can be very detrimental. I did need to be told what the boundaries were. I did need to know how many sessions there would be ( but they often let me have more). I did have to make sure they allowed for time to wrap the talking up well before the end because if they didn't help me do that then I left with all my thoughts raging about having been disturbed but no one to help me with the aftermath at home and no solutions. And one session a fortnight gave me recovery time between so intensive would really not have suited me at all. So I have had a long gap between my last counselling and now. Previous counsellors have thought I needed long term support but self referring to cmht was unpleasant so not letting myself have too high expectations. I can't offer you the experience of a parent, or that of someone working in hospitals. But I can be another person on here adding to the support and advice already given. The other thing I would suggest is that if you can, you too need to find someone to talk to or write a journal , just so that you can let off steam ( as on here) because you need to stay as well as you can in these circumstances. Stand your ground if you can and don't bow to pressure if it doesn't feel right.