No “simple quiz” needed

Simple quiz can help spot developmental delays in kids, study finds | The Autism News .  “ 15 per cent of children have developmental delays that may affect their speech, motor skills, cognition, social skills and emotional states. But only about 30 per cent of children with such delays are diagnosed before they enter school.”

Oh, don’t I wish that my daughter had needed a specially developed “quiz” to detect her autism, if only…

If only she had not lost all her speech…

If only she had maintained her ability to socialize with others…

If only she had not been asked to leave preschool because she walked all over the other children instead of playing with them…

If only she had not developed such severe tantrums…if only the terrible twos had stopped when she turned three…

Now I know that other less severely affected children can seem only slightly “odd”  and might benefit from additional therapies if caught early.  I remember several odd kids in my school; in fact,  I may have been one of them.  Bullied and ostracized, socially awkward, they stand out in the classroom; but, it may be that teachers are too busy now to help them.  Many figure out ways to help themselves, sometimes in less than positive ways.

But it seems to me, in my opinion, truly developmentally delayed children are noticed well before anyone gets around to doing anything to help them. The parents often bring them to several physicians searching for answers and receive reassuring platitudes such as “he’ll grow out of it”.  Why? Because they don’t know how to fix the problem and wish it would go away.

Even if the autism “epidemic” is not real, at least increased awareness is also bringing about increased treatment and acknowledgement of the problem.

Gee…I started this piece feeling resentment about how the mildly affected group have hi-jacked all the limelight and all the funding and now I have come full circle and see that there is a side benefit after all.

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