A Mother Reports On The Impact Of An Autism Profile

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The Impact of an Autism Profile: A Mother’s Account.

The below is a first hand account from a mother about her experience of getting an autism profile for her son and the impact this has had on both of them. This account was written spontaneously.

Hi, my name is Laura.. I just wanted to share my personal experience with Elizabeth and Aspiedent:

From my son being about 8 months old I knew something wasn’t right. After years of going back and forth to the GP, speech and language, paediatrician etc (I’m sure most of you know the drill) we were discharged and told ‘he’ll grow out of it’. I fought and fought because I just knew and we eventually got him assessed.

In 2021 he finally got a diagnosis of ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) and DCD (Developmental Coordination Disorder). At the time, I was so relieved thinking that he would get the help and support he needed in school but that didn’t happen as they didn’t see his struggles (he masks very well)

At home though, I saw his mental health deteriorate further and further, to the point he didn’t want to do the things he enjoyed anymore and just becoming more and more reserved.

After paying for some private counselling for him, it turned out all his anxieties were school based but school said there were no issues and ‘he was happy in school’ My son would also tell the teachers that as well as he ‘likes to please’ but then he would constantly stim after school and then shut down and cry himself to sleep every night and beg me not to send him.

I felt terrible forcing him into school and seeing him go from a ‘bubbly, excitable, carefree child’ into an ‘anxious, depressed and scared’ child.

I joined lots off support groups including ‘Zigzag Leeds’ and they were amazing for advice and support. I had applied for an EHCP at the time, but that was rejected because my son is ‘academically doing well’ and ‘behaves well in school’ so posted on the group for some advice on where to turn to next and I started chatting to a lovely lady who recommended ‘Aspiedent’ where she had gone to in desperate need for help for her daughter.

She said the lady who assessed her daughter was amazing and it had changed so much for them both and also her understanding of her daughter so I looked on the website and gave them a call!

I spoke to Dr Elizabeth Guest (the owner of Aspiedent) and she explained what she did. She basically unpicks the person based on their strengths/struggles/likes and dislikes using previous reports and assessments. She can then pick up processing problems etc and find out where their main issues lie. She would then do an in-depth report/profile (it sounded exactly what he/we needed)

My only reservation was the cost - even though the price she charged me is well below what she should be charging. Anyway, a long story short I rang my parents and they agreed to pay for it.

I sent all my son’s assessment reports and a background of where he struggles and went to see her for a face to face assessment.

When we arrived, Elizabeth introduced herself and spent time with my son with a puzzle and we had a chat about him (not being too negative as she already knew all this) which I liked because I don’t like him hearing everything negative. We try to focus more on his strengths.

After 15 minutes, Elizabeth said ‘I think I know what’s going on here!!’ She then asked my son if he saw things in shapes and colour? My son stood up and shouted “Yes!! My Mum’s purple”! and got really excited. He then went over to the board she had up and drew all his emotions in colour and his numbers in shapes and colours and explained how he worked things out. I was so overwhelmed (I nearly cried) I couldn’t believe I never knew any of this that was going on in his head!!

It turns out it is a condition called synaesthesia and affects everything in his day to day life. Elizabeth did a huge in depth report and now everything finally makes sense and my son can explain how he feels.

We discovered that mainstream school is too much for him due to the sensory overload from his ASD and Synaesthesia so he is now being assessed for an EHCP and now we can find him somewhere he can thrive. There are lots of other things in the report that will help him with his daily struggles but that was the biggest thing to come out of it.

I will never forget that day I got to know my son and now our bond is even better .. he can tell me (and school) how he feels based on the colours he sees and we now know the triggers of his behaviours and how he sees things. I really dread to think where we would be now had I not been that day.

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