She was 22 months old, non-verbal, and what I would call asocial. There was no eye contact. We had daily breakdowns multiple times per day. We went into therapy not knowing what we needed, not knowing what we were going to get. We knew we needed help.
It was fascinating to us. Someone understood our child better than we did, which was really enlightening. That gives you cause for hope. In a world of her own, it took all of the first few sessions to say I’m witnessing something that “I don’t comprehend. I just don’t understand what I’m working with.” What I learned… was how to be a better parent to a child that needed a different style of parenting. The old ways don’t work with this particular child. There’s a lot of coaching that Ms Stacy offers that honestly we needed desperately and we couldn’t find elsewhere.
Recognition of the world around her (was lacking). I would use the term asocial- she didn’t even acknowledge that there were people in the room, other kids, other adults- literally in her own world. For us… the most dramatic impact…was her recognizing that there were other people in this world. My daughter looking at me for the first time, eye to eye, it’s hard to not be emotional thinking of that moment.
I have a social child now, who sings and wants us to dance together. Therapy… it has fundamentally changed what we have and what we’re working with. Therapy helps us to prepare the external world (and others) for what might trigger an event with (her). One of the largest things that we probably ever learned about was transition. I didn’t even understand what that meant in the beginning (changes throughout our day, disappointments). There are little things we can do everyday to prepare her. The biggest change? She’s become desensitized to all the triggering events. Ninety percent of all the triggering events she had two years ago just don’t exist today so that’s been a huge change for our family.