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Archive for October, 2012

We are so excited to announce that we will be speaking at SXSW in Austin, TX in March, 2013. We will be part of the interactive conference under the Diversity and Emerging Markets topics.

Thanks go out to the Autism Society of Greater Austin (Fran Kennedy and Ann Hart) for thinking about and supporting the proposal.

We will be speaking about Apps for Autism. If any of you are app developers and would like for us to consider including your app in our presentation, please contact us for information that we will need in order to be able to do that.

We will be covering:

  • apps that support communication
  • apps that support language development
  • apps that support academic development such as reading, writing, spelling, and math
  • apps that teach and/or support social skills development
  • apps that teach and/or support fine motor development

Hope to see you there!

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I came across this news piece over the weekend.

adult-picky-eater-will-only-consume-three-kinds-of-food.html

While no one asked me for my opinion, I’m certainly going to provide it.

Medical Assessment

First, this woman needs a complete medical work up. I would be willing to bet that she has anemia and bone density issues. Having low cholesterol is simply not good enough.

GI Workup

The TV journalist did not mention this but I would also want to know this woman’s GI habits. Is she constipated? Does she have diarrhea? Are there bouts of these? Additionally, does she experience acid reflux? If not now, did she as a child?

Nutritional Evaluation

Marla needs to see a nutritionist or dietician. Chances are, Marla is also deficient in important minerals like zinc. Research has shown that zinc deficiencies can result in altered taste and smells.

Does Marla have any food allergies? or Food sensitivities? I would be willing to bet she is sensitive to Gluten and Dairy (and possibly potato). This should be evaluated.

Treatment

Once the assessments have been completed, Marla needs to start some good behavior therapy. She needs to learn to associate good things with all the foods that she is currently scared to eat. We currently use the iPad with various applications, games, and movies. However, she may need something a little more powerful.

All of the foods that she is currently eating need to be stopped immediately and completely. The foods she is eating cause cravings which prevent her from wanting other foods. When she stops eating those foods, she will be able to tolerate and appreciate new foods.

Withdrawals

However, when Marla stops eating those same 3 foods, she is more than likely going to experience extreme withdrawal symptoms (much like those experienced by drug addicted individuals). We have written about this before and we have experienced it with several of our client.s

I wish  the best to Marla and her counselor and I hope that they get these issues resolved for her.

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Hi and welcome to Ask Missy Mondays where I respond to a question from readers. Today’s question came a couple of weeks ago but it took me a while to research the answer. You see one of my best friends passed away after a long battle with colon cancer. You can read more about her story here.

As if her passing were not enough, she leaves behind the most precious 3 year old. How do you tell a 3-year-old child that their parent has died?

Very. Carefully.

And With Honesty.

And Considering religious beliefs.

My heart breaks for Dawn’s Dad. My heart breaks for Dawn’s daughter. My heart breaks for Terri and Steve who will eventually adopt Ava and care for her for the rest of her life.

To assist, I found a few resources for the family.

I Miss You

I Miss You: A First Look at Death Book, is authored by Pat Thomas who happens to be a counselor.  It’s written for younger children. So it may be perfect for Dawn’s daughter. You can read more about it here.

Help Me Say Goodbye

Help Me Say Goodbye might also be helpful. However, Dawn and her family are deeply religious. The activities in the book are not directly tied to God, Jesus, and life in Heaven. So some pages may need to be skipped. Alternatively, adults could get purchase the book and then duplicate the activities that may help Dawn’s daughter (e.g., draw a picture of you and mommy together when mommy was alive). You can read more about it here.

The Invisible String

I found this book while  looking for other resources. The Invisible String is not religious but it is a simply story about love and people who you love. You can read more about it here.

 Samantha Jane’s Missing Smile

Samantha Jane’s Missing Smile. This is a story about death. However, in this book, the Dad dies. It may or may not be good for Dawn’s daughter because it is about a Dad but it may help her relate emotionally. You can read more about this book here.

Other Possibilities

I came across two other possibilities. However, without reading them, it is difficult to know if they will be appropriate. One is called, Where are You (available here) and the other is called “What’s Heaven” by Maria Shriver (available here).

Telling a child that she has lost her only parent must be one of the most difficult situations ever. Surround the child with love and listen with your ears and your eyes.

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