How It All Began
A number of years ago I was studying the book Allergy Antidotes™: Advanced Procedures Manual by Sandra Radomski. She devotes an entire section of the book to her work in clearing substance sensitivities with kids who have been diagnosed on the autism spectrum.
Her results were fascinating.
One of my client’s sons was diagnosed on the autism spectrum. I called him to explain what I was learning and asked if he wanted to give it a try. He was skeptical, but was willing.
The results were unexpected (and atypical) to say the least. Within two weeks we saw radical changes. Over the course of two months he went from needing one-on-one attention to being able to go through the school day with no extra assistance.
I was amazed by the results. I decided to throw myself in to learning as much as I could about the autism spectrum and the families that live with it.
What I Learned
When I started to educate myself about ASD I thought I was going to be learning about what was going on inside of kids’ bodies and how I might be able to help, but I learned so much more. I learned:
1) ASD is still very mysterious.
No two kids who are on the spectrum are alike. They each have their own cocktail of symptoms and what makes it even more complicated is that each symptom does not have only one cause. It is not a one-to-one cause-to-symptom relationship. It is a many-to-many relationship. Each cause can have many different symptoms and each symptom can have many different causes.
You can see how this can cause great frustration and anxiety for parents and care providers. A successful treatment that works for one child is not necessarily going to work for another child. There is no way of knowing what is going to work and what is not.
2) Parents of ASD are so amazing!
The first autism conference I attended I was blown away! There was a question and answer panel with a microbiologist. There were questions that parents were asking that I am sure many high school biology teachers wouldn’t understand what was being asked, much less have any idea what the answer would be.
Parents of ASD have to:
- Know human biology and biochemistry (at a graduate level).
- Know how to navigate school systems that have inadequate information and little experience in knowing how to help their kids.
- Advocate to insurance companies that often times just want to medicate their kid’s behavior and not deal with the root causes.
- Advocate to doctors who are overwhelmed with their patient load and don’t have time to keep up on the latest research about ASD.
- Defend their kids (and their own parenting skills) to friends, family, and total strangers. [In my online research I found a comment from someone who said the reason kids have ASD is because they are not disciplined enough when they are young and then proceeded to quote the Bible to support their point. It is despicable what some people say].
- Provide (in many cases) 24/7 care for their children.
3) Because of their deep love for their kids, parents of ASD kids do a poor job of taking care of themselves.
It makes so much sense. I talk to parents of ASD kids all the time. I know they don’t love their children any more than other parents, but because of the reality of their lives they are given profound opportunities to show and live-out that love.
Sometimes they feel alone. Sometimes they feel responsible. Sometimes they just ache for their kids. Sometimes they feel guilty because their other kids are not getting the attention they need.
This doesn’t cause them to give up. This causes them to try harder and to give more.
This leaves them little time or energy to care for themselves and when they do take a moment for themselves they often feel guilty for taking care of themselves. They think, “How dare I do something for myself when my child is suffering so much.”
This is not a healthy way to live, but like I said, these choices and beliefs are rooted in their love for their kids.
4) There are very few (read: no) resources for parents to take care of themselves.
After recognizing the facts in lesson number 3 I decided to see what resources were available for parents to do self-care. In the summer of 2008 I spent 20 hours doing online research to find resources that were geared towards the parents of special needs children to help them to do self-care.
I found nothing. I am not making an overstatement for drama. That is exactly what I found. NOTHING!
What This Means
These lessons have shaped the way I resource parents of ASD kids. I provide two types of resources.
First, I provide resources for parents to care for themselves. There is a perfect analogy to explain the importance of this. It is an analogy that many professionals in the people-helping fields use. The reason the analogy is over-used is because it is true. When you are on a flight they always tell you to put on your oxygen mask before you help someone else. You can’t help someone else breathe unless you are breathing. It is hard for a parent of an ASD child to provide the best possible care for their children if they are not first taking care of themselves.
Second, I provide resources to aid the work of parents and the child’s treatment team.
Many of these resources are available free of charge here on the site. All the current free resources can be found with the Austism (ASD) tag. If you are interested in these resources I encourage you to sign up for the newsletter to insure you will be notified when new resources are added to the site.
I also work one-on-one with families. Because of my disposition of wanting to provide care for both the child and the parents I have created a special introductory program.
- 1 hour of work creating the initial surrogate protocol for the parent(s) to do for their child. This typically includes 30 minutes for protocol creation and 30 minutes of training the parents on how to use the protocol (the regular session rate is $175).
- 3 sessions of one-on-one with the parent working on the stress, frustration, and the physical consequences of these emotions (3 sessions @ $125.00 each, which is a 29% discount).
If you have any questions about tapping, ASD, and/or the services I provide please feel free to contact me.