1. How are you different from other professionals in your approach to the treatment of Autism and other Speech and Language Disorders?
I strive to create goals for the child AND the entire family. I view the family as equal partners on ‘Team Child” and we work together to create and successfully meet goals. I use methodologies from RDI (Relationship Development Intervention) and focus on the building blocks of communication in a mindful progression. My therapy rarely involves rote ‘drills’ and often involves continuous adaptation and growth for the child and family. My goal is for the child to achieve genuine independence driven by intrinsic motivation to succeed.
*For distance clients, we will have to discuss assessment options and packages.
3. For what type of family/ individual is RDI going to work?
RDI will work best for people who are good collaborators and motivated to learn the strategies for themselves before focusing on child goals. RDI is process oriented and becomes a lifestyle!
Some families are too overwhelmed to make the space in their lives for RDI at this point. Feel free to follow my blog and learn about strategies to try at home. However, if you’re looking for a simple technique or traditional 1:1 therapy for your child, other approaches might be a better fit for you.
4. What exactly is RDI and what does it include?
RDI is a parent-focused program for Autism that treats the core deficits of Autism. Current research tells us that despite variation in cause and presentation, the common factor across cases of Autism is the breakdown in the parent-to-child guiding relationship, resulting from abnormalities in the child’s development. RDI works to repair this relationship and get it back on track and strengthen students’ skills in the following areas:
- “Emotional referencing: The ability to learn from the emotional and subjective experiences of others.
- Social coordination: The ability to observe and control behavior to successfully participate in social relationships.
- Declarative language: The ability to use language and non-verbal communication to express curiosity, invite interactions, and share perceptions and feelings with others.
- Flexible thinking: The ability to adapt and alter plans as changing circumstances.
- Relational information processing: The ability to put things into context and solve problems that lack clear cut solutions.
- Foresight and hindsight: The ability to anticipate future possibilities based on past experiences.
5. Does RDI really work?
Please see the “Evidence” page of the website to see a compilation of research.
Apart from the evidence above, my answer is a resounding ‘yes!!’ As long as the family has the resources to utilize the strategies, I have always seen success.
6. What results can I expect?
- Your child will grow in the ability to solve unique problems creatively and flexibly, with increasing levels of independence.
- Your child’s meaningful communication skills will improve. Communication initiated by your child will increase.
- Your child will become more self-aware and able to control his or her own behavior.
- Your child’s “theory of mind” (the ability to appreciate the thoughts and feelings of others) will improve.
- Your child will have an increased sense of self and others, leading to greater self-confidence and improved relationships.
- Your child will be more able to navigate his or her world independently by anticipating and planning for potential problems, and responding more appropriately when unexpected problems arise.
7. May I connect with some of your former clients to see what it’s like to work with you?
Of course! I have several families who have agreed to speak with potential clients. Send me an email telling me a little about yourself and your child so I can reach out to the family that would best be able to answer your questions.
8. How long is the program?
As we say in RDI, “We are here to work ourselves out of a job.” Services will be complete once you are confident in your own ability to guide your child toward his or her full potential.
Most often, programs are 6 months – 2 years.
10. Ok, I’m ready to get started with RDI or Speech Therapy Services, but I have a few more questions. How do I arrange a time to speak with you directly?
Find me on the ‘CONTACT ME’ page to schedule an introductory call. I look forward to speaking with you soon!