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Autism diagnostic in France

(9 Posts)
tb Tue 18-Sep-12 17:02:17

We've just had our dossier validated for our dd who is nearly 15. I was wondering if anyone else has obtained a diagnostic in France.

We think she has pda (pathological demand avoidance), rather than classic autism, which I think they will classify as part of ted.

BriocheDoree Tue 18-Sep-12 18:26:22

Yes, when DD was much younger but prefer to discuss offline (mainly because I'm not on the site much these days). Email me brioche 90 @ gmail . com (without the spaces, obviously).

aliciaflorrick Tue 18-Sep-12 18:32:32

Yes for DS, but he was in CP when diagnosed. I can say the lead up to diagnosis was an absolute nightmare and very, very stressful, I had to jump through loads of hoops. Also, for DS they just call it Autism, whereas I think in the UK he would either be aspergers or HFA.

However, once the diagnosis was in place the support he and I have had has been amazing. I would say try and get school on side, my directrice was extremely supportive and she was the one who pushed to get DS all the extra aid he needed. In fact, DS has been funded for so much assistance that he doesn't have the time to take some of it up.

tb Tue 18-Sep-12 19:44:52

Thanks for your replies.

Basically, as with most cases of pda - if that's what it is, the outbursts/explosions/panic attacks occur at home where she feels safe, and not at school.

Had they been at school, we feel that we would have been taken much more seriously long before now, whether by Camhs in the UK or CMPP in France. As it is, we've just been accused of being crap parents, and told we should apply limits.

The college she was at (she's just started at lycée) filled in the forms, bot basically wrote 'n/a' across the lot.

She was admitted to hospital in 6ieme as she was so anxious, but this was poo-pooed by the assistante sociale at college as just being par for the course. So, it seemed that she didn't want to get involved.

aliciaflorrick Wed 19-Sep-12 09:08:55

To make you feel better, they've told me DS' autism was down to my bad parenting, and to be honest they made me feel like shit for a long time, even now I go and have quarterly visits with the psychologist and it's all about my parenting style and decisions I've made.

Good luck, is there an approachable educational pyschologist you can contact either through school or external bodies. I found once you've got them on side then that's when things start to happen.

I hope your DD gets some help - I've found that the pastoral care in colleges is absolutely dreadful, I'm dreading my DS moving up without some kind of support system already in place.

Bonsoir Mon 24-Sep-12 18:29:49

Sorry to read of your DD's difficulties, tb. Have you suspected that she is on the autistic spectrum for a long time?

I agree with other posters that France is a tough place to have a diagnosis of autism and that parents are often blamed for their children's problems. Good luck.

tb Wed 26-Sep-12 20:30:13

Bonsoir, no we didn't. We've been pulling our hair our for about the last 10 years or so. For a while, we thought it was perhaps something like ODD, but it was after coming across a thread on here that we found out about pda, which seemed a much better 'fit'.

We talked to dd about it - after our assistante sociale told us in no certain terms that we were useless as parents (in front of dd). She looked it up herself on the internet, and recognised herself. Later, she told us that she'd always though that there was a problem, and would recognise it when she found out about it. Doesn't explain why she never said anything along those lines during all the endless Camhs appointments, though.

Bonsoir Wed 26-Sep-12 20:39:54

How awful that the assistante sociale said that to you, let alone in front of your DD. French assistantes sociales are very poorly trained (I have a French friend who has an association which tries to train assistantes sociales in rehabilitation of sex offenders, and she has an awful lot to say about the huge waste of taxpayers' money on undertrained, underqualified assitantes sociales...).

Do you have any English HCPs in your area? I have been in France for 20 years and lived in other countries before that, but I have come to the conclusion that nothing beats HCPs (especially the talking kind - GPs, psychologists, speech therapists etc) from your own culture? I know a lovely English GP in Paris if you thought that might help as a starting point.

tb Fri 28-Sep-12 11:43:46

Bonsoir thank you for that offer, but we're about 500km away from Paris. Our GP has been good, and is ready to talk to dd whenever she wants to, the problem being that she doesn't <tears hair out in frustration> The possible problem we have is that now she is nearly 15, some of the things will be put down to 'her age'. Grrr.

We didn't think of her as being on the spectrum before, as she, or used to, loves to talk to people and get them to respond. Now, I wonder if it's part of her 'manipulation' which is something at which she's an expert. She's always seen herself as an equal to dh and me, which I'd sort of put down to being an only child, although as one myself, I always knew my place. There is also the complete lack of empathy. Recently she's told us that she'd started to notice that other people felt remorse, and she doesn't - makes it a bit pointless demanding apologies, but may explain why they don't seem to prevent the same thing happening 5 minutes later - rudeness, door slamming, swearing etc etc.

Having not been around babies, I just thought that her passivity was 'normal' and that I was lucky having a 'good' baby! She had 2 naps a day until 3, and was still having one at nearly 4 in the afternoon, as well as a good 10 or 11 hours a night. Her sitting/crawling/walking were all about 3 months behind what used to be considered normal, and she wasn't speaking at 2, although when she started a couple of months later, you couldn't find the off switch.

As part of the dossier we sent to our cra, we also sent a google translation of the pda page on the uk's national autism site. They offered to have an English speaker there when the evaluation is done. Don't think that dd will need it, but it would be useful, especially for dh. Speaking to them, they do seem pretty open - unlike the psychiatrist from the centre de guidance infantile who said that she was up to date and hadn't heard of pda - the research was first published in 1988, so don't think she really wanted to know.

We'll see - it's quite a long way off.

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