Finally! The Right Doctor!

After only one visit to a new pediatric psychiatrist, which are not easy to find in semi-rural areas such as “these parts,” I am convinced that we got the right one! We’ve been seeing one psychiatrist for over a year, and it’s not to say that he was always the wrong doctor for us, but he has quickly become just that. He’s frustrated. He, like every other professional we’ve ever seen about Javan, is stumped. Javan doesn’t “fit” in any typical or even atypical boxes. He’s a little of this, a little of that, and so complex and confusing that even doctors who’ve seen patients since the dawn of creation say they’ve never seen a child quite like this.

Due to recent med changes, Javan has been super unstable and it’s been really difficult for our family to cope with all of this. One day, this psychiatrist (the one we’re ditching) asks me if I think we should put my four year old in the hospital!?!? I said, no, that would completely terrify and traumatize him and I won’t do that while he’s still small enough for me to sit on. Two days later, I kid you not, two, he says in frustration, “Well, we’ve tried some of every kind of medicine available, and nothing has worked. ” (Which isn’t completely true. The Abilify was the best one we found, but it caused TD stuttering.) So, his conclusion was that this must not be a biomedical problem at all, but a behavioral one, and I should consider enforcing stricter consequences. Yeah. No.

After seeing this new doctor (Dr. Fulsom in Tyler, in case you’re looking for one in this area), I am dumbfounded that I stuck with the old one for so long. I had no idea what I was missing! Sure, he was friendly enough, but he didn’t listen well and just threw meds out there with his fingers crossed. I just assumed that that’s what psychiatrists were like! Wrong! Dr. Fulsom sat with us for an hour and a half today and listened. He noticed things about Javan in that amount of time that the other doctor hadn’t noticed in over a year. He wants Javan to see a neurologist in Dallas to rule out seizure activity (scary yes, but something that should have been suggested a long time ago!). He said things like “sensory integration issues” and “applied behavior analysis.” Things that other psychiatrists turn a blind eye to and don’t bother even learning about! He watched Javan and talked with and listened to him and called him “sweetie” even when he was acting like a demon on PMS.

And the best part is, he said we haven’t even begun to exhaust the medications available to us. He did admit that for some kids medicine simply doesn’t work. I told him that I didn’t think the Seroquel was right for Javan, and he changed it! The other doc didn’t even listen! We’re going to stick with the Depakote and add Risperdal. I really knew this was the right doctor for us when he was considerate enough to ask if Javan takes pills yet. Something as simple as that convinced me, because we were forced to teach him how to swallow a pill only after many, many times of the other doctor forgetting to write “liquid” on the prescriptions.

We haven’t found all the answers. We haven’t found the right cocktail of medicines to help our son. But, I think after all this time, we’ve found the right doctor.

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