I went along to the verbal behaviour seminar yesterday and while a lot of it was quite out of my grasp, it was a very interesting day.Although parents and grandparents and other relatives were free to take part, it REALLY was geared towards professionals.
The two things I really took away from this session were a) we really need to try VB and ABA with Emily and it's data and results driven (as opposed to whatEVER they're doing at school. The second thing I took away was I really HATE autism. I hate what it's done to Emily, I hate that we HAVE to have seminars like this to even start the journey to understand our kids, I hate what it's potentially going to limit her life to be like.
It makes me feel even worse with all the people posting on Facebook about how they love their child as they are and wouldn't change them. I have to say, if Em was neuro-normal, I can't imagine she'd be as energetic as she was. I'd take a slower child any day, if it meant she was neuro-normal.
I didn't know anything about VB or ABA until I went to this class - and that was probably not a good thing, as a lot of stuff went over my head - not being a professional and all. What I did learn was the entire field is based on research by B.F. Skinner and, while his tome is quite difficult to read, the last 50 years or so have produced some good literature and some good protocols to combat autism.
I know I shouldn't get my hopes up, but I did come away from the day thinking that we might be able to reach Em a little more than we currently do. I guess that's what keeps you going in the end - hope.