After many years of trying to persuade the relevant people to please consider the evidence we were putting before them in terms of his behaviours and obvious anxieties, we've finally got a diagnosis of autism/Asperger's for Buster. He's nearly twenty!
What does this mean for him? Well, very little now. He's living in a small home which is probably as good as any institution's going to be. Probably nothing will change there because the behaviours which have now been given a name were already there and are for the most part (I think/hope!) responded to appropriately.
But how much help might've been available in his early years? The local authority has a dedicated ASD team - maybe they all do.
How lovely to have been able to ask for advice on different issues.
How great to have been able to join a support group.
How wonderful to have been able to use a name for Buster's condition rather than people around thinking he was just miscellaneously strange.
How great it would've been to be able to explain better to Sweetie the reasons for his rages, the fact that he couldn't control his responses, the way his mind might be working. How different might their relationship have been?
Sounds like I think life would've been hunkydory if we'd only known! Not really tho' - life's not easy with any child with disabilities, and many with autism are farther along the spectrum than Buster. But with a bit more knowledge and support we could've done a better job so this morning I just felt like indulging in a few 'if only's.