Wednesday, August 25, 2010

MHRS Services part 2

I guess it seems like I am always complaining. I really don't mean to be. I just want help for my daughter. MHRS is a miserable way to get help. I can see why children, especially teens with Aspergers, end back up in the hosptial.

For the first 30 days you see the psychiatrist once and the nurse practicioner once. That's it. No counseling or anything else.

There is no continuity of care between the hospital and MHRS. The company tells you they are gathering paperwork. PLEASE.

I am a trained advocate. I am in the process of calling the regional director of mental health services to ask her some questions. I can not believe this is really the way it is. What happened to wrap around services?

Related Post


Monday, August 23, 2010

Autism: Long Term Supports In the Year 2000+

Many parents of children with Autism start to wonder at some point what will happen to their children when they are gone. Some families wonder what they can do if they do not have the resources to plan for a trust fund for their child.

Unfortunately state institutions are many times seen as an unsafe choice. There are reports which come out on a regular basis about the poor treatment children with Autism receive in institutions and nursing homes.

Even when families have resources such as trust funds people with disabilities may not be happy. In the long term that is what we as parents want for all of our children. We want them to be happy.

Luckily there are different ways we as parents can plan for our child. Some of those plans may include financial instruments, some may include paid supports, and hopefully some will include non-paid supports.

Although financial resources may seem to be the most important that is not necessarily true. Rules and regulations about financial resources can change. The economy can change as we have seen in recent years. These changes can easily eat up what parents see as an adequate amount of money.

Because of changes in the economy and stresses of an aging population, legislators are more and more being pressured to control costs. This of course means that some of the paid supports that parents are depending on at some point may not be available in years to come. It is tricky to plan in any great way for these changes.

One of the resources families with a child with Autism are looking more and more towards are those unpaid, natural supports. Whether Circles of Support, friends, neighbors, or fellow church and club members the big questions are where do we find them and how do we get them.

This is a critical point in time. Finding those long term supports, learning how to use them, and watching them flourish are more important to family members than ever.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Social Security

I'm up in the night a bit nervous. I am going to start the process tomorrow to apply for the daughter with Aspergers social security (SSI). I suppose I am a bit sad too. Didn't want to need to do this. It will be a good safety net for her. Did I mention I hate forms? Really.


In our state one of the mental health services which is paid for by medicaid is Mental Health Rehabilitation Services or MHRS for short. We had our first appointment with one of the providers today. Sometimes people amuse me.

I have a teenage son. He is 16 just this past month. If you hit him or push him, he will hit you. Of course the daughter with Aspergers and ADHD wants to scream at him, hit him, and/or push him. The intake person told me my house was violent because he would hit her. I responded he would not hit her if she did not scream in his face, hit him, or push him. Although he is always in trouble when he hits, he is being provoked. She even went so far as to suggest he needed MHRS. I refused.

I guess what I am flabbergasted at is that attitude that he must need help. He listens to what I say. He does what I tell him to do. He has never touched me. He does what he is supposed to do. She does none of these things and has made me black and blue.

We obviously need help. She does not have any place to go. The Aspergers is making it difficult. She can always be with me, but we need to learn some new skills. She needs social skills so she doesn't have to scream, hit, or shove. I'm on board with whatever needs to be done.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Autism: Parent/Professional Partnerships for Progress

Many times explanations and techniques to deal with Autism are just as valid now as they were years ago. We are talking about techniques such as facilitated touch mainstreaming, talking typewriters, computers, etc. Many of these Autism Techniques are designed to do one thing, get children with Autism out of there shell.

Typical people believe with some clues from older people with autism that being part of what is going on around them in a larger ways is desired. Unfortunately there are also people who believe that children with autism are only mimicking what they see.

Parents know that their children think and feel. Parents understand this human condition in their children in a more fundamental way than other people might. It is interesting to observe that parents seem to understand that their children steer toward sensory feelings and emotions on some level that is not readily observed by others.

Children with Autism seek out structure in whatever small way they can. The ability to seek structure, take chances, and explore their surroundings are important characteristics to recognize and nurture in our children.

Those characteristics are also important for professionals to recognize. When recognized by everyone it is no leap to recognize that these characteristics are not in line with someone who just stores facts and regurgitates them.

Hopefully we are coming to a time when parents, professionals, and educators are working together to understand that there are many different ways to meet the needs of children with Autism. They all have useful information to bring to the table. There is no one way, but luckily a lot of information to be used.

One of the interesting developments is the use of Vasopressin. Vasopressin is typically used to control water content in people. Although the animal studies are very small when the bodies level of vasopressin is manipulated the animal can show autistic characteristics.

This chemical, not drug, may be the key or open to door to understanding bonding emotions. If a child with autism spontaneously shows affection or emotion it may be because they are producing Vasopressin. This chemical may also be a bridge to reintegrate people with mental illness into their social peer groups.

Another Rough Afternoon

We have had another rough afternoon, screaming and tantruming. I wonder how much the Cymbalta is working. This is the second evening she says she feels like hurting herself. I'm worried and watching her closely.

We have an appointment to do intake for MHRS services Wednesday. I just don't know how much help they will be able to do since we are just starting intake.

Does anyone have any experience with Cymbalta and Aspergers/Autism? I would appreciated hearing about it.