I think I had to keep telling myself over and over, “There’s no harm in trying therapy”. It was my way of convincing myself to move forward. I had in my hand the opinions of experts that my son had delays. It was now my job to decide what to do. Thus my new mantra, “Whats the harm?”
One of the services of the CDSA is to assist in finding a therapist. E was being referred for development therapy and speech. While I saw speech as an immediate need, I would have to wait. In order to rule out a physical problem with speech, E would need his hearing checked. The CDSA offered this screening, but we had to get scheduled, and that had a bit of a wait. Meanwhile, I did have to choose a developmental therapist.
The CDSA only assists with finding a therapist. They take your time availability and then send it out to area providers. Then your CDSA coordinator sends you an email with the those who are interested in taking you on as a client. Sometimes you get detailed biographies and credentials, but some provide very little information. I had a very hefty list of developmental therapist available.
I felt lost in a sea of credentials I didn’t understand. Some lauded their ability to work with autism, but there wasn’t evidence E even had autism. I did look for those who had gone further in their education and for those with experience in language delays. That narrowed the list to about five.
Next, we took to the community. Well the electronic kind at least. My husband and I scoured the web and posted on work community boards seeking a recommendation. Lucky for us, we got one. We decided to try a woman name Sheila. She was a former teacher of foreign language turned developmental therapist. I was not sure how a therapist works with a mute child, but I was willing to try. What harm could it do?
I must interject to this story the financial aspect of all of this. The CDSA offers their assistance for free. Screenings are also free if done through the CDSA. (If your child is 3 and above this is done by the county school system) However therapy is not free. The CDSA does assist families in low income, and has a sliding pay scale. So you might qualify for 90% assistance, 10% assistance, or if you make enough, the bill is your responsibility. The other good thing is that some therapies are picked up by your insurance company. One therapy not covered by most major insurance companies, developmental therapy.
Another thing to keep in mind, is at any time during this process, I could step away. There was no one pressuring me or making me send my son to developmental therapy. The ball was always in my court. Thus, it was decided that Ms.Sheila would begin to give E therapy once a week in my house. The poor dog would be jealous.