Just as the proverbial soccer moms spend their lives minivanning kids to practices and games and lessons, parents of children with special needs often feel theyre constantly driving to someones office somewhere to spend an hour in a waiting room while something gets done to their child. When youre constantly running around, it can be hard to stop and take stock -- but every now and then, its good to take a look at where youre going, who youre seeing, what theyre doing and how its going, and see if any changes are called for. Take our Therapy Check-Up and see if things are still running smoothly.
CHECK-UP: The therapistIf you can check more than a few of these, it may be time to think about finding someone else to do your childs therapy.
___ I am not kept informed as to my childs progress.
___ I am uncomfortable talking with my childs therapist.
___ The therapist makes me feel like a child.
___ The therapist does not like to hear suggestions from me.
___ The therapist and I disagree about my childs needs.
___ When the therapist and I disagree, he or she does not take the time to explain his or her point of view, just dismisses mine.
___ The therapist has made negative comments about me, my child or my family.
___ I have heard from others that the therapist has made negative comments about me behind my back.
___ I am afraid to bring up any problems with my childs therapist.
___ Other families whose children work with this therapist have had negative experiences.
___ Ive heard of another professional who might work better with me and my child.
___ My child is not getting the fullest benefits of the therapy because of the therapists lack of experience or availability.
CHECK-UP: The officeIf you can check more than a few of these, you may want to find a therapy provider who offers a better location or set-up.
___ I wish the therapist was in a different location.
___ We spend more time getting to the therapist and getting home than my child spends in therapy.
___ Whatever my child gains from the therapy he or she loses during a long car ride.
___ We spend so much time getting to the office and getting home that other things are left undone.
___ Getting to the office, or parking there, is stressful to me.
___ The office space is not adequate to the full needs of the therapy.
___ There is no comfortable place for parents to wait.
___ Something about the office frightens my child.
___ Something about the office distracts my child.
___ When we have to wait, there is nothing for my child to do.
___ There are other facilities that would be easier for us to get to.
___ There are other facilities that might better suit my childs needs.
CHECK-UP: The therapyIf you can check more than a few of these, you may want to put the therapy on hold for a while and try some other options.
___ The therapy is not what I expected.
___ The therapy is not being conducted the way Id heard it would be.
___ There are things about this therapy that make me uncomfortable.
___ My child hates going to therapy.
___ We have battles getting my child to therapy, or dealing with him or her after.
___ I dont have much faith that this will help my child.
___ The therapys okay, but I dont feel very strongly about it.
___ I dont tell other people about the therapy because Im afraid they wont approve.
___ I dont understand how the therapy works.
___ No one has given me any information about this therapy.
___ Ive read about the therapy, but its too complicated for me to understand.
___ There are other therapies Id like to try, but cant while were doing this one.
CHECK-UP: The resultsIf you can check more than a few of these, you may want to replace the provider, discontinue the therapy, or rethink the best way to reach your goals for your child.
___ My child doesnt seem to be making any progress.
___ Other children seem to be making more dramatic progress than my child is making.
___ There may be a little progress, but not enough to make a difference.
___ The goals being pursued are not meaningful to my childs or our familys life.
___ The results are not what I expected.
___ I never get progress reports, so who knows what the results are?
___ The program never changes, whether its working or not.
___ My child seems to be getting worse.
___ The therapist never asks if Ive seen a difference at home.
___ The therapist never gives me any follow-up to do at home.
___ There are areas Id like to see improvement in that are not being addressed.
___ Im wondering more and more if this is just a waste of time.