My friend’s son was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) when he was 2. When my friend’s son, Evan, was still little he never spoke a word and never interacted much with anybody but his toys. I chose the group patients who has a child that is autistic because one of my close friends has a child of her own that is autistic. I wanted to learn more of what my friend had to endure and the challenges she had to persevere having an autistic child. I grew up around Evan and I took care of him most of the time when he was still little. His attention span was very limited and he barely talked to anybody. The first couple years Evan never spoke and he was always quite. At first mostly everyone in the family thought he was a late bloomer and that he probably won’t start talking until later on. One day I came out from my room and I saw Evan lining up his animal toys in a straight line following each other. When one of his sisters knocked out the toys Evan reacted and started throwing a tantrum. During that time I thought that was normal for children of his age but then I started noticing that his behaviour is not normal from the other children I have seen before. Evan wouldn’t give me any eye contact when I was trying to speak with him. I had to hold his face to make him look at me for a second just to get his attention. He wouldn’t want to leave the house unless he has the specific toy he was attached to. His father was in denial when his wife brought up that they should have Evan tested for Autism Spectrum Disorder. Eventually, he agreed to have him tested. After couple of tests Evan was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. It took a while for my friend to accept Evan’s Diagnosis and to have specialist try to help work on his speech and behaviour.
According to The Regents of the University of Colorado (2013), “Autisim Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is a group of developmental disabilities that can cause significant social, communication and behavioral challenges that range from mild to serious” (Looking closely at autism from a cultural perspective). It basically just means that Autism symptoms can be different from child to child and that the severity of the condition varies. Autism has just been discovered recently and there is still a lot to discover about this disorder. The Autism Society (n.d.) website explained that symptoms of autism can vary from child to child and should be evaluated by a special team consisting of neurologist, psychologist, developmental pediatrician, speech/language therapist, learning consultant, or other professionals knowledgeable of autism. Every year the ratio of kids diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder is increasing. According to the CDC (2013), “1 in 88 children is born with autism in the United States and 1 in 54 is boys” (Data and Statistics). Children who are autistic that are communicating don’t show much of body language or facial expressions. It is hard to have a conversation with autistic children because their attention span is limited (Carbone, 2010).
The bias some people have about parents with autistic children is that they think that the mother and father are not doing their duty of raising their child right. Their kids are spoiled that’s why they’re acting that way. Dealing with patients that have autistic children you really need to pay attention to both the parent and child’s behaviour. The whole picture you need to know about dealing with patients who have autistic children is that most of them are dealing with different stages of grieving. The stages associated with grieving are shock, sadness, anger, denial, loneliness, acceptance and adjustment (Autism Speaks, 2013).
M. Arciaga (personal communication, June 6, 2013) indicated that when she just found out that her child was diagnosed with ASD she was shocked of the diagnosis she received and was not ready to accept it. She…