C.K. asks from Savannah, GA on February 22, 2008
Help with Tourettes
I took my son to the doc this week and the doc believes he may have touettes. I am a little shocked but after researching and speaking with the doc it all makes sense. Of course my husband doesn't wanna talk about it. Does anyone else have a child with the same problems?
M.N. answers from Atlanta on February 24, 2008
Tourettes is an alarming diagnosis, in part because of what's not known...we create more fear when we're in the first throes of discovery. But for sure, you're not alone. Continue reaching out. Unfortunately men usually lag way behind women when it comes to childcare issues, especially disturbing issues.
There is a national Tourettes Association, with a local chapter in Atlanta. Tourettes may be considered a learning disability depending on the severity of symptoms, so another source is the Learning Disability Association of Georgia.
I'm an editor of a local magazine called Kids Enabled (www.kidsenabled.com). We have a resources listing in the back of the magazine, and on line for professionals in the atlanta area who work with students/children like your son. You can pick up free issues of the quarterly magazine at Whole Foods, or you can subscribe for about $9/yr.
There is a terrific book called Taming the Tiger, written by Sherry Pruitt, an Atlantan and mother of two boys (now men) with Tourettes. It's an excellent source of information.
Your husband will have to come around in his own time, but don't let that hold you back. You'll learn how to handle your new situation, and be a wonderful mother.
Attention is the natural prayer of the soul.
N. Malebranche, 16th c. French Philosopher
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E.G. answers from Atlanta on February 23, 2008
My sister's almost 16-year old son was diagnosed with Tourette's Syndrome several years ago. With the proper treatment and medication, it has all but vanished. Today, this kid is a freshman in high school, is an amazing gymnast, currently (I think) studying Tai Kwon Do, and is otherwise doing quite well.
Of course getting a diagnosis like this is going to throw both you and your husband for a major loop. But there is all kinds of support out there for your entire family.
A documentary you might want to look up is "I have Tourette's -- Tourette's doesn't have me". The title pretty much describes what these kids think of themselves, each of them afflicted with Tourette's Syndrome. They all have friends. They all have exceptional gifts. They all are thriving. Check it out.
Good luck C.!
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N.G. answers from Atlanta on February 23, 2008
I am a Child Advocate, volunteer only. I was trained by the PLSP program at the Georgia Advocacy Office. Leslie Lipson is the attorney that runs this group of Volunteer Advoacates. You can contact Leslie at ###-###-#### or if you drop me an email about the age of you son and what school district you are in I will see if anyone with Touettes experience is in your area and available. I am a business owner and have 2 kids, one with Special Ed needs. I would love to be a listening ear and offer support. My email is ____@____.com or my number is ###-###-####. Ask for N.. I have seen lots of sucess stories and I have had to help my husband and several other dad's get their head around the special needs of their kids. Do not do this alone. We need to support each other.
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D.T. answers from Atlanta on February 23, 2008
I don't have any children with Tourettes, but my mother-in-law had 3, possibly 4 (one wasn't diagnosed, but she strongly felt he had it too) boys with Tourettes. There wasn't as much support when she was raising the boys and had to do a lot of digging and discovering on her own. Because of this, she has started many area chapters to help others deal with this and has been part of many studies. I couldn't begin to tell you all she knows in how this can affect you and ways that might help you to deal with it. She's not here in Georgia, but she would love to talk to you if you want. Let me know and I'll get you her number. The one thing she loves to do now is help others going through similar situations since she did so much on her own then. Anyway, just throwing that out there if your interested. My thought is, it couldn't hurt!
H.W. answers from Atlanta on February 23, 2008
I totally agree with what Mimi said.
Watch your child closely if you are vaccinating see if your child gets worse with every vaccine. TO me it sounds like a side effect of a vaccine...
Also video tape and record your child so you have proof of the before and after, if your child gets worse, stop and think about it and look into not vaccinating for a while to let your child detox and help him build his immune system naturally.
Don't be too quick to drug your child if that is what is reccommend by the doctor to deal with the tourettss and read all of the side effecnts and warnings for EVERYTHING, Drugs and vaccines included, remember you and you alone are responsible for your childs health. And you and you alone with the consequences of your actions and what you approve, not your doctor... Please note everytime you allow a vaccine you sign a waiver of your rights to keep the doctor and pharmacuitcal company off the hook should something happen...
A.N. answers from Atlanta on February 23, 2008
My son does not have tourettes but he is Autistic and we as a family have been through allot because of it.
My husband was in denial for along time; and he still has issues that I think he will never resolve; but give yours time to get a little more adjusted to the thought of a child with a special need.
Fine support groups and you start going and he will too; once he sees that you are dealing with it.
Have a good dr for your son; and have meetings with his teachers and any other support teams that you have.
Do not make excuses for your husband; he has to deal with this in his own time and on his own terms. You handle what you have to and he will eventually.
M.S. answers from Atlanta on February 23, 2008
I took my daughter to a specialist when she was about 8 years old. She had eye and head movements, but the doctor didn't want to call it Tourettes because she did not have the vocal outbursts that go along with it (but she did develop noises later). He said that there are medications, but that she will be better off not going on them unless it gets worse. He also said that she will either outgrow it by around age 14 or it will continue. It seems to get worse when she experiences anxiety, such as being in a public place. Other students at school have made fun of her, others have asked what is wrong with her, but fortunately she has a few close friends who understand. She is now 11 and a half, and we are seeing much improvement over earlier years, so we have high hopes that she is outgrowing it. We have always been careful to try to ignore it and not bring attention to her ticks. I don't know if that has helped.
H.H. answers from Savannah on February 23, 2008
I also have a son with Tourette. His is a medicine induced form. He takes meds for ADHA and it brings on 3 different ticks. Finding out something like this about you child is difficult, but not knowing is worse than knowing. There is medication that will help with this if it becomes to much for him to handle. My dr did not want to prescribe meds until he absolutely needs it. Stand strong with your husband. It is hard for men to see that there is something wrong with their son. You are the mom and you do know what is best. Dad will come around. Hope I was able to help