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ASD: A New Perspective

RDIconnect

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ASD: A New Perspective
17 MIN2018 OCT 5
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In the latest episode of RDIconnect’s podcast series, ASD: A New Perspective, Dr. Rachelle Sheely, co-founder of the RDI Model talks about HOPE for your children with autism using examples of children who have gone through the RDI program.Subscribe on iTunes hereFull TranscriptDr. Sheely: I had an experience last Saturday and I’ve been thinking about it a lot and I thought it might be something we could talk about today. So I thought I’d throw it out too. Anyway, last Saturday I was meeting with a young man I’ve been meeting with, actually for two years, I meet with his parents and I meet with him because he’s an older teenager. The first thing that he ever said to me when he came in was, “You know I fired my last therapist and you could be next.” So he was not happy about being there. Kat Lee: Okay, there you go. Dr. Sheely: And I felt like saying, “Well I hope so,” But anyway a very, very involved kid, a lot going on, a lot of things to manage. But this last Saturday, he’s going into high school with no support, he’s really doing well and he came up on his own with six things he’s accomplished. What I liked about the conversation was that these six things show a self-reflection, they show the hard work he’s done, they actually kind of document the guiding relationship he had with his parents. So, anyway, I didn’t know if that was something you’d be interested in talking about today. Kat Lee: Oh, of course, yes, I know we’ll all love to hear, yes. Dr. Sheely: So how should we get started?Kat Lee: I think just talking about him and his experiences and what he shared with you and kind of how you looked at those experiences and then how other people can think of about those vis-a-vis their own children or themselves in case of other students in his situation. Dr. Sheely: Well Katherine one of the things that I wanted to talk to you about today was a young man where I’m feeling the work that he’s been doing with himself and what the parents have been doing with him have led to some really incredible insights. He’s 15 years old, when I started seeing him he was just 13, or almost 13, and he was a very involved young man. Involved not only with things that were going on the spectrum but with some seizures and some other indicators of incredible anxiety. So the work that we did was a combination of work with both the parent and with this young man. Where he used to have meltdowns over throwing flowers away because he couldn’t stand the change, the meltdown would last for 20 minutes or longer and he would be thinking about it a week later. Or the soccer ball got kicked over the fence and what if the neighbor’s dog slobbered on it. He just couldn’t get past it, literally these meltdowns that went on and on. He just couldn’t rectify them, so when I think about someone who is really successful I think about this family because the parents did the hard work every single day. In the beginning, the work was really hard. He did the hard work too, he wanted to do it. He didn’t have much hope but I think he wanted to do it. Dr. Sheely: So he went from a small private school with just a few children when I met him to a pretty big middle school. The parents did go to school, they did support him and he had some teachers that he could talk to. He never had help in the classroom but he did have some support from various staff members at the school. A lot of bullying, a lot of things like that. Every day when he got out of the car, his dad said to him, “Who’s my favorite, son?,” and he would say, “I am.” And his dad would say, “Who loves you more than anybody in the world? “You do dad.” And then his dad would say, “And who always has your back?” He’d say, “You have my back.” Every day, there was this conversation he