My son was just diagnosed with Nonverbal Learning Disorder. Tips and advice for coping please!
August 27, 2012 7:36 PM Subscribe
My 12 year old son was just diagnosed with Nonverbal Learning Disorder. Please help me to not catastrophize.
posted by anonymous to Education (11 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
My 12 year old son, previously diagnosed with ADHD, had a very tough time with the transition last year from elementary to middle school. His grades dropped dramatically, he complained about going to school, became more withdrawn, and started throwing tantrums. We had been taking him to a therapist for these issues but were not making any progress. She suggested a neuropsychological evaluation and we just received the news on Friday that he has Nonverbal Learning Disorder. I am overwhelmed and panicking.
He has a lot of the hallmarks of the disorder - difficulty with executive functioning, transitions, dysgraphia, fine motor issues, anxious, fear of new situations, etc. He was doing okay socially until last year, but after transitioning to middle school he just didn't seem to connect with any new friends. Reading about the disorder online has me in a complete panic. There is a lot of information out there on this and much of the outlook seems bleak to me - social isolation, inability to hold down a job as an adult, depression, suicide risk... the list goes on. My husband and I are requesting an IEP meeting, but the neuropsych written report won't be available for about 4 more weeks. We don't know if the district will require testing by someone of their choice (we paid privately for the eval), and if so, how long this whole process will take. I'm not even sure what type of accomodations to look for since we don't have the recommendations yet, but school starts in a week and given the way it came to a close last year, I am worried about setting him up for failure.
We've explained the results of the exam to our son, but he's 12 and doesn't completely understand what it means. He doesn't like change and his only concern right now is that things don't change at school (even though he struggled so much last year.)
Sorry this is a rambling question, but I guess what I want to know from other parents/people familiar with the disorder is:
How did you cope with the diagnosis?
What impact has it had long-term on you/your child?
How do you stay rational when all of the information presented looks so daunting?
Thanks. We are in Massachusetts.