An Adventure in Genetics

So, last time I wrote we were on our way to a genetics consultation. That was one doozy of an appointment, not so much because of information gleaned as from handling Javan’s anxiety level while there. One nurse got kicked, my husband was bitten several times, and I had to go to a different room to give the nurse basic information because she couldn’t hear me over my child’s angry yelling. They were very understanding; after all, their office mainly sees children with genetic abnormalities which can also translate to communication and behavior abnormalities, so this wasn’t the first time they’d seen behaviors like this.

The doctor was absolutely amazing with Javan and was able to get him to relax enough to be willingly examined. After a cursory examination, the doctor told us that he didn’t see any physically indicators of a genetic abnormality. He explained that there are sometimes genetic markers present in people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other psychiatric conditions, but that finding those markers would be of little to no benefit in our son’s case. I went on to ask about the specific insights I’d hoped to gain through genetic testing. Would it help the doctors determine the best medicines to try for attaining stability? No. Would it help educators in any way? No. Would it give us a clearer view of his future capabilities or potential limits? No. Would it even help clarify diagnoses? Not likely.

Okay, so we agreed with the doctor that this doesn’t sound likely to be a helpful option.  Still, I have no idea how much it’d cost us out of pocket, so I’m waiting to hear back on that after their office contacts our insurance company. I mean on the super unlikely off-chance that it’s not life-shatteringly expensive, I might try it just for documentation purposes and to satisfy my curiosity. And, although I find it embarrassingly petty of myself, I have to admit there’d be a certain amount of satisfaction in having physical proof of his disorders to combat those few who would say that my son’s problems are nothing more than the effects of poor parenting. I wouldn’t consent to testing solely for that purpose, but it’d make nice icing on the cake. And I really like cake. And icing. Mmmmmmmm. Caaaakkkeeee. What was I saying again? Oh, who cares, let’s have some cake!

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