Michael and Sean entered high school yesterday.  Both boys seemed pretty good with the idea of returning to school.  Sean, in particular, seemed rather enthusiastic about having additional structure in his life.  In fact, both boys had “an amazing morning” on their first day.  Not too surprising, as both boys try very hard to please.

But…

Then came lunch time and Sean had to walk past a couple hundred loud happy kids enjoying their first luncheon of the school year.  And that’s when Sean had a meltdown.  I can only imagine how his brain must have short circuited and how his anxiety level increased with every step he took.  From there, it was full out restrain time, including the assistance of his personal aide and one of the high school football coaches.  For a kid who only weighs 128 pounds soaking wet, Sean is amazingly strong.  I guess that’s what adrenaline will do for you.

Anyway, the call came from the nurse around 1:10pm alerting us that there had been “an incident” as Sean was walking past the lunch room.  To the school’s credit, they didn’t try to merely sweep this under the carpet.  Instead, they plan a successive approximation strategy where Sean will slowly but surely be reintroduced to the same lunch time situation.  Susan and I are very much in agreement with this plan as Sean will need to work on his coping skills if he’s going to find a fulfilling vocational work experience when he reaches adulthood.

Being a typical dad, I spent yesterday afternoon searching the Internet trying to fix the problem by looking at anti-anxiety drugs for an autistic teenager.  Of course, there is no panacea.  Drugs like Xanax and Zoloft come complete with multiple side effects and long term addictive consequences.

So today, I wait for the phone to not ring.  It’s only 12:33pm.  The next hour is going to move very slowly.

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