Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Keely's Evaluation Results

Christian and I met with the psychologist. We thought we knew what to expect; what we heard surprised us.

FIRST, everything that is wrong with her is NOT due to some circumstance in her life. It is not due to a traumatic incident or what has been going on between Christian and I. It is genetic. These problems surfaced as a toddler... as some of you know, she was always... different. When she was 3, it was hard to really diagnose her with anything because she was so young. So, when she was young, they said "it looks like it will be this and looks like that..." they wouldn't formally diagnose her because she was so young. She DOES NOT have Asperger's Syndrome like they thought. AS kids are not this aware of their feelings and emotions. They are not this aware of what's going on inside them or outside around them. This surprised us the most, but when the psychologist explained everything, it made a lot of sense.

Keely was anxious through the evaluation, sometimes angry, sometimes oppositional. She has a very negative overall perception over life, and a VERY negative perception of me. Her "working memory," where you take in info in the environment and try to figure out what you may or may not already know, is being affected by her emotional problems. The attention problems may not be from ADHD, but instead because she is so focused on her anxiety, negativity and emotional problems. The medication that she was on at the time of testing stays in the body for a longer period of time, so the test was inconclusive (she failed 1 of 3 tests). Basically, her cognitive tests all came back in the average to superior range (that means her brain is working great).

She is 7. A normal 7 year old is usually pretty oblivious to what is going on internally. Oh, not with Keely. She is very aware of her anxiety, depression, strain on her social interactions and behaviours; she is very emotionally distressed and has a very low self concept. A VERY SIGNIFICANT level of depression. She has a pretty significant level of anxiety which she manifests into physical problems (being tired, tummy aches, potty problems, headaches). This anxiety is almost obsessive compulsive. She has to have things in order and if they aren't they stress her out and she dwells on it until it is changed.

She is a highly reactive child. This has been since birth. She has an over reactive central nervous system and gets set off by stimulation. She is very hyper reactive and this leads to a lot of anxiety. A situation to explain this is if someone bumps into you. You and I would see it as, "Oh, we bumped into each other," whereas Keely interprets it as, "This person did it on purpose." She has no rational thought, she thinks purely on emotion.

She also has an attachment disorder. This had been since she was a baby. The core is that she has problems with trust and this results in problems with relationships. As long as things are going okay in her mind, everything is fine. Once something changes (and this is usually a misperception on her part) and it is not her way, all hell breaks loose. She perceives this as being done directly to her as a result of her trust issues. It's a vicious cycle because you never know what is going to set her off.

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