Thursday, March 27, 2014

Family History Section

I know I haven't blogged in a while, but not much has been going on lately TS wise. My tics have been on a downswing. They're a little less forceful and less frequent but no major changes really other than the natural waxing and waning of Tourette. I did want to blog about something that happened over spring break though and that I haven't gotten around to blogging about yet. 

Recently my brother who is 17 has been diagnosed with ADHD, mild OCD, and anxiety. He went through neuropsych testing in order to try to get accommodations in school and on standardized testing at the beginning of the school year this year and that's when he was diagnosed. He was very hyperactive as a child and definitely has had ADHD his whole life but has never been officially diagnosed until now. He may have had a preliminary diagnosis of it when he was young, but i'm not 100% sure about that. He's also tried a few ADHD meds over the past few months including Adderall, Ritalin, and Concerta. He didn't like any of them though so now he's on Lexapro which will treat both his ADHD and mild OCD/Anxiety. 

Anyway the real reason I am writing about this is because I found his report from the neuro-psychologist on the kitchen table over spring break. I already knew about the whole process and his diagnoses, as he and my mother have both been very open about it with me, but since i'm interested in neuropschology I figured I would flip though it to see how this kind of report is written. 

While flipping though it, I found the family history section. In the family history section it said "Family history includes Anxiety, OCD, ADHD, and Tourette Syndrome". I was sooo excited! You're probably thinking, Why in the world were you excited to see this? It's the truth, your brother has a sister and a cousin with TS so that means he has TS in his family history. Pretty simple. But no, it's really not that simple. 

For those of you who have been following my blog/ facebook for a while now, you might know why I was so excited about this. Both my mom and dad strongly rejected my Tourette's Syndrome diagnosis when I was first diagnosed and for quite a while afterwards. They insisted that the neurologist was wrong and that the things I do and have been doing all my life that the doctor was no calling tics were just habits or manifestations of my anxiety or nervous nature. They insisted that my tics would go away when I started taking medication for my OCD and anxiety and when they didn't go away they kept on ignoring the diagnosis and insisting that it was not correct.

When I started getting involved with my local Tourette Syndrome Association, Tourette Syndrome Research, and with Camp Twitch and Shout, my parents started to become more accepting, but still in the back of their head they always hold doubts. My mom especially goes back and forth sometimes being more accepting and sometimes being less accepting. Over the past half a year or so though, even though we don't talk about Tourette's very often outside of brief mentions of camp, my research, or a TSA event, she hasn't said anything negative about Tourette's or anything suggesting she believes I don't have it which is a good sign.  

Seeing the family history section of my brother's assessment was an even stronger sign that my mom is finally truthfully reaching an acceptance of the fact that I have Tourette's. The fact that it was there in the family history section means that she told the neuropsycholgist that she has a daughter with Tourette's and/or has family members with Tourette's. This is a huge step for her and one that makes me feel validated and accepted. 

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