Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Our Experience with ABA Therapy

I love this picture... it's pure happiness. Poppy (my father-in-law) built the kids a swingset just before we found out about JD's diagnosis and I swear it's the best place to go when any of us are feeling down. It helps me remember that he's just like any other little boy and his smile always makes me feel better!
The last month has been tough. We started JD in therapy in early April, focusing on ABA which is short for Applied Behavior Analysis. It's a type of behavior therapy that is based on the science of Skinner. For the month of April he went twice a week for 2 hours a day. I can say that it was truly painful to watch, but it has the most "scientifically proven" success for autism therapy. Three weeks in and I couldn't watch anymore. JD spent at least 60% of the time crying on the floor or in a chair. It's part of the program - trying to stop the unwanted behaviors from happening) but my gut told me there has to be a better way.
For nights I researched alternatives and it was such a hard decision to take him out, but we did. I am sure ABA has helped MANY people out there and if you do any research on the internet you'll find just that. Many people say it has changed the lives of their children. I just couldn't do it - at least not yet.

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