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.
You'd never know about his struggles from just looking at him, would you?
Stay tuned for Part Two.... :)