Towards the beginning of this month (around the 12th) we received word via email that both of our ABA therapists would no longer be working with Tony. Their primary reason was that they felt like his behavior towards them was unreasonable, and uncontrollable, and were somewhat threatened by it. We understood that they were probably just out of their league in dealing with a special needs child, and we parted ways.

I need to make note of the fact that since Tony’s original diagnosis in July/August 2005 of severe Autism, he has come a long way in terms of development and behavior. Most people who now meet Tony (our recent camping trip bears this out) find him nearly indistinguishable from other kiddos his age. He has his own peculiarities, but his behavior is far less extreme than ANY of the other Autistic kiddos in Charleston that our other trained professionals deal with.

We were originally alarmed by what our ABA girls had written…but then decided that perhaps their aspirations to work with special needs children were unrealistic, since Tony represents the very best and easiest of this segment to work with.

We will be transitioning Tony’s ABA program shortly, and are also looking into other PCA providers for him after he turns three next month. For now, Marlaina is managing Tony’s day with great success, and he still has his sessions with Speech and OT. We have noticed that Tony is now picking up words and language skills that we haven’t worked on with him, and judge that he is probably now learning through his own interaction with his environment. This is a tremendous leap forward for any Autistic child…and gives us a decent window into his academic potential with regards mainstreaming him into a traditional school setting.

So, for now, we have Tony 24/7 and are just dealing with him on our own. We hope to change that soon with his recent acceptance to Chesterbrook Academy. We’ll be sending him to school for partial days…in the mornings…starting soon. We’ll see how that goes. His Speech Path (beloved Jill) is certain that Tony needs more social skills and interaction with his peers, and this is the best route for him.

We agree 100%.

In the future, look for more posts and pictures from me (Anton-Daddio) as we continue to chart what life is like, Being Tony.