Thursday, December 10, 2009

Meet Ben (Part One)

Developmentally Delayed

Tourette Syndrome

Pervasive Developmental Disorder

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Grand Mal seizures

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

and about three or four other disorders...

Meet Ben. He's 26, and if you haven't already guessed it, Ben has been diagnosed with each of the above syndromes and disorders. His cognitive age is probably around the same as a 7 or 8 year old. Ben is unable to write and his fine motor skills are very minimal. A task as simple as buttoning a shirt would take Ben up to 10 minutes, and even then he would probably give up from pure frustration. Incapable of logical thinking, simple instructions like "you have to look before you can cross" will receive an answer similar to "what do you mean?" from Ben.

Even with high doses of medication, his OCD is so severe that a one minute change in his schedule will send him into behavior related problems, sometimes on a high, aggressive level. Additionally, he will confirm the same thing with someone over and over again. For example, if he is being picked up at 1:30, Ben will make sure whoever is picking him up knows he will be waiting outside at 1:20 to be picked up at 1:30. Not a minute before or after. He often will talk through the situation of being picked up 5-10 times the night before. Same words. Same outcome. OCD overload!

Ben has been having seizures since he was in elementary school. The first landed him a trip to the emergency room in an ambulance to confirm fear- Grand Mal seizure, something in which Ben would continue to struggle, despite multiple medications and doses.

Taken this Thanksgiving
Meet Ben. He's my old brother.

You'd never know about his struggles from just looking at him, would you?

Stay tuned for Part Two.... :)


MannMom3 said...

Wow! He's so cute!

No, you would never know..

Looking forward to reading part 2..

Thanks for sharing Liz!

Sarah said...

You are an outstanding sister to your brother. Remember how quickly Belle warmed up to you this summer? I totally said to my sister, "To me that completely affirms what a wonderful person she is."

Amanda said...

Sounds like you two are lucky to have each other... what an amazing relationship...what an amazing man.


Katrina said...

Liz, I have no doubt you are an amazing sister. I love how proud you are of your family-- you can tell in your pictures--you're always beaming.
I'm looking forward to Part Two. Thanks for introducing all of us to Ben.

Arizona Mamma said...

That is amazing! I mean, seriously you wouldn't know any of that from looking at him. Maybe you will answer in part two, but does anyone know why/how any of this happened? Like was it a trouble pregnancy or anything?