Connor Achieves Success through Day Treatment
Nowadays Connor runs out the door excited to be going to school. A year ago he might have wedged himself in a corner, screamed, kicked, hit or bit his mom, Kathleen, as she tried to get him ready. Once at school, altercations with teachers and fellow students inevitably would erupt, and his mother would have to leave work and take him home.
Last month Connor, age 6, graduated from LifeWorks NW’s Children’s Day Treatment program, an intensive, individualized treatment and special education program for children aged 3 to 10 with moderate to severe behavioral and social challenges. Connor struggles with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), bi-polar disorder and speech delay, which cause aggressive behavior and low-impulse control.
“These teachers have the training, the medical background and the understanding to work with kids whose brains are wired differently. They know Connor is not acting out on purpose, that he is not trying to make life difficult. Instead of getting involved in a power struggle, they try to look at things from Connor’s point of view. They hold him close, help him talk it through. They‘ve taught him to self-regulate, to be self-aware.
“Connor is not fixed,” Kathleen said. “He still needs medication and will for the rest of his life. However, a year ago, our 5-year-old daughter could not have friends over, and now she can. Our goal, of course, is for Connor to one day be in a typical classroom amongst his peers. We have a lot of work ahead of us, but we are well on our way.”