I’ve had this post drafted for almost two weeks. I needed to let it rest before I could say the nurse acquiesced.

Your two psychologist that gave the diagnosis and recommendations are licensed in the state of Colorado after further followup.

Yay! Our outside agency’s findings will be included in Elliot’s initial evaluation. That’s great news. And I really wish that were the end of that for me, but, alas, my brain can’t shake it quite yet. Along with all the usual minutia bouncing around inside my head, I’m thinking about the power and faith we put into experts.

We look for experts in all aspects of our lives. We look for it in software departments all the time. We want subject matter experts, domain experts … how do you become an expert? What happens when one of the expert’s core pieces of knowledge is deemed incorrect? Can an expert be fallible and still be an expert? Do we really need experts any longer since we can all go out and google ourselves silly?

I’ll argue there are some experts that cannot afford to be wrong, first responders come to mind. But even medical specialists are suspect as we often ask for a second opinion. We don’t trust our teachers to be experts in child development or appropriate curriculum, it’s set at a state and national level.We don’t trust the chef at the restaurant to cook the meat to it’s best temperature, we inform him what we like.

I look to, and expect, that people in a chosen field are expert (or are growing to become expert) at their craft. When you pass me misinformation, that you yourself did not attempt to corroborate, I can’t accept you as an expert.  This is not to say there isn’t room for not knowing, but when you don’t know, say so.  At the end of the day all we’re left with is our reputation. The person that informed us that our outside agency diagnosis was inadmissible put her reputation on the line after “asking around.” In the same email where she concluded that our psychologists were in fact allowed to diagnose, she stated:

One of the nurses role in the IDEA and /or the IEP is to interrupt the medical information given to the school by outside agencies.

I think she meant “interpret” not “interrupt”. But this further demonstrates the lack of detail our medical expert adheres to. I cannot trust her at face value. Not being able to trust someone that is supposed to be on our team to help find the best solutions for my child is horrible. It’s ruffled my mama lion fur.

4 smart people left their mark:

  1. pamela, 2. February 2011, 15:08

    Sometimes we do a better job parenting and advocating when our mama fur is ruffled. Hang in.
    pamela´s last blog ..whatever- stormcasterMy ComLuv Profile

  2. Kelly O, 4. February 2011, 5:43

    Ultimately, it’s probably a good thing that you don’t trust her at face value. You’re smart and strong and have great instincts. xoxo
    Kelly O´s last blog ..Midmorning snacksMy ComLuv Profile

  3. Abbey, 10. February 2011, 14:46

    Follow your gut and keep asking lots of questions & looking for answers!

    I’m in a school where we see a lot of different levels of autism. (Private, highly academic school) The students are kept mainstream, but a lot of the parents are in complete denial and this completely screws with the child and their ability to learn and grow. It breaks my heart. I just wanted to say how impressed I am that you guys are not only accepting it, but also finding ways to make it better. It’s the best thing you can do and Elliot will be an amazing child, and adult, for it.

    You are strong and you are brave! You can do this!!! And you are doing it well!! I know it seems like a lot, but in the end it is all worth it.

    Thinking of you!!

  4. Catherine, 10. February 2011, 16:32

    Thanks Abbey, that’s very sweet! I can’t imagine being in denial about your kid needing extra services. Those same parents wouldn’t think anything of requesting, nay demanding, extra services if their kid were off the charts bright and not challenged by the school work. Special Ed gets such a bad rap. :( I think for us most of our special ed is going to be OT and social stories.