- collect a range of tasks typically done in today’s Toronto homes and offices;
- these tasks are divided into categories i.e. those which can be done by those with borderline IQ, mild, moderate and severe IQ
- the tasks can also be arranged by the different cognitive functions needed to do them
- the clients be informed the tasks within their capacities based on the assessment.
7. I believe that booster sessions of feedbacks should be done a few times. It would be ideal if the assessor or someone talks to the client about a week and a month and a few months after the feedback and discover how much information from the feedback has been retained. If at least a little practical information has been retained and he client is acting on it, indicates that the feedbadck has been useful. However if the client has no changes in his behaviour or plans even after feedback, it means that
(1) I have tried to educate client ABC over many sessions about her developmental disability and tried to get her to set more realistic goals for herself. She continues to be in denial and is registering for a writing course to become a writer. There are four other possible pressures contributing to her denial of DD:(a) her parents, (b)her siblings , (c)her boy-friend,(d) her own lack of insight or denial. Her parents constantly urge her to 'do better' so that she can have a job, a house, a car, a career like her older sister and like 'other people'. Her parents and siblings themselves are in denial about her disability despite the psychologist explaining to them about her cognitive assessment results. The parents are immigrants with the typical immigrant dreams of success for their children. Her boy-friend does not know she is developmentally disabled and he urges her to study well and aspire for a 'better job' with a 'higher' income & become 'successful' and give up her current job i.e. waiting tables at a coffee shop, which is within her capacity. Her boy-friend wants her to get into college and later get a better job which is impossible for her level of intelligence. This person has been 'studying' for the last 4-5 years and getting nowhere. Being from a well-to-do family, she has not faced any financial difficulties due to her choices. The years past which could be used to learn a skill within her capacity or get work experience have been used to attend a college where she's learning nothing. But she is having a good time with her friends there and she's not unhappy. This is one positive aspect of this case.
(3)The client GHI is moderately delayed and in her mid 30s. She does not ask a question to be repeated if she does not understand. Instead she says, " I don't want to talk about it' or 'I am not interested' or some such thing. She also shows anger and annoyance during conversations when she does not understand. The person talking to her gets the impression that she's upset. They never suspect that she has not understood the conversation and they also don't realize that she will not admit that she's not understood. She covers up her lack of understanding with a show of anger and disinterest.
(4)Some parents of developmentally disabled and autistic (and other disabilities) too are in denial or ignorance about their child's disabilities. This leads to poor choices, lack of judgement and this can lead to negative consequences such as financial losses, delay in getting the right help, etc.
I have seen a parent of a mildly autistic young lady refuse to accept the daughter's autism. The autistic child was put in a school with typical children which made it difficult both for the child and the teachers. She was sent to tutors for extra coaching in the evenings. When the parent finally accepted that her daughter is different and got the autism diagnosis and relevant help, the daughter was 23 years old. The mother went into depression and had a breakdown after this late diagnosis of her daughter and start of treatment. When denial is let go and acceptance starts, depression is possible but this depression can be treated. But the daughter who would have learnt a lot more if she had gone to a special school for the last 12 years, the time is lost forever.
I have seen another parent of a moderately developmentally disabled daughter refuse to let her daughter work in 'cleaning' jobs as she firmly believed her daughter is capable of doing more than cleaning, such as being a receptionist. Despite detailed explaining of her daughter's cognitive test results which indicated moderate developmental delay, the mother believed her daughter should be doing 'higher' jobs. Despite explaining the multi-tasking, presence of mind and people skills needed to work as a receptionist, the mother refused to believe that her daughter lacks the capacity for the job. She believed that the receptionist has to answer phones and her daughter could do that.
Denial and or Ignorance about Developmental Disability is the problem in the above mentioned cases. Both clients and their family members could have this denial or ignorance about the disability.
I strongly believe that unless this denial/ignorance is dealt with FIRST, it is difficult to succeed working with them. Denial and ignorance about the disability means that they are not planning with full information but are making major decisions with a huge piece of vital and relevant information missing. Making decisions with missing information is bound to lead to erroneous choices and decisions.