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Jane Alison Sherwin's honest and uplifting account provides insight into the challenges of bringing up a child with Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA). After years of misdiagnosis, Jane's daughter, Mollie, was diagnosed with PDA at the age of seven, and we follow her experiences pre and post diagnosis to age 10 as she attends school, interacts with the outside world and approaches adolescence. Throughout, Jane provides commentary on her daughter's behaviour and the impact it has on her family, explaining the 'why' of PDA traits, including the need for control, meltdowns, obsessive behaviour and sensory issues. She reveals the strategies that have worked for Mollie and provides essential advice and information on obtaining a diagnosis and raising awareness of PDA. The book also includes an interview with Mollie. Full of advice and support, and with a focus on understanding the child and how he or she sees the world, this book will be of immeasurable value to the parents and families of children with PDA as well as the professionals working with them, particularly teachers and teaching assistants, SEN co-ordinators, psychologists, outreach workers and social workers.
This beautifully illustrated guide helps young people with Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA) to understand their diagnosis, develop self-awareness and implement their own personalised problem-solving strategies. Written in consultation with young people with PDA and their families, this book recognises the importance of handing control back to the young person, and that there is no one-size-fits-all PDA profile. Readers are encouraged to engage throughout with interactive writing, doodling and checklist exercises to explore their own particular characteristics, strengths and challenges. Me and My PDA is sensitively tailored to the needs and experiences of young people (aged 10+) with PDA. The guide is designed to grow with the reader, and can be used for many years as the young person develops and changes - making it invaluable to PDA-diagnosed individuals and their families.
Educational environments can present challenges for children with Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA), who require different strategies than children with a more straightforward presentation of autism, and schools frequently find themselves struggling to meet their complex needs. In this guide PDA experts Ruth Fidler and Phil Christie outline effective strategies for supporting pupils with PDA in education settings. Including a useful overview of PDA, this book outlines the impact of this diagnostic profile on learning, and explains why Collaborative Approaches to Learning is such a successful method for supporting pupils with PDA. It shows how teaching professionals can get started with this approach, with advice for implementing key strategies to overcome common challenges. The book also includes information on creating PDA-friendly learning environments, helping pupils to develop long-term social and emotional resilience. With handy downloadable resources, valuable information on supporting the wellbeing of adults who work with children with PDA, this is an essential resource for teaching and support staff in mainstream and special education schools.
"To think of PDA as merely involving demand avoidance is to me akin to thinking of tigers as merely having stripes." This book is a unique window into adult Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA), exploring the diversity of distinct PDA traits through the voices of over 70 people living with and affected by the condition. Sally Cat, an adult with PDA, has successfully captured the essence of a popular online support group in book form, making the valuable insights available to a wider audience, and creating a much-needed resource for individuals and professionals. Candid discussions cover issues ranging from overload and meltdowns, to work, relationships and parenting. This is a fascinating and sometimes very moving read.
Diagnosed with Pathological Demand Avoidance (PDA) in his teenage years, Harry Thompson looks back with wit and humour at the ups and downs of family and romantic relationships, school, work and mental health, as well as his teenage struggle with drugs and alcohol. By embracing neurodiversity and emphasising that autistic people are not flawed human beings, Thompson demonstrates that some merely need to take the "scenic route" in order to flourish and reach their full potential. The memoir brings to life Harry's past experiences and feelings, from his torrid time at school to the peaceful and meaningful moments when he is alone with a book, writing or creating YouTube videos. Eloquent and insightful, The PDA Paradox will bring readers to shock, laughter and tears through its overwhelming honesty. It is a turbulent memoir, but it ends with hope and a positive outlook to the future.
Elaine Halligan’s My Child’s Different: The lessons learned from one family’s struggle to unlock their son’s potential explores the enabling role that parents can play in getting the best out of children who are seen as ‘different’ or ‘difficult’. Foreword by Dr Laura Markham. Society favours children, and adults, who conform. The notion that our children may be shunned for being ‘different’ breaks our hearts, but there is plenty we can do to help such children develop into thriving, resilient adults. In My Child’s Different Elaine shares the true story of her son Sam, who by the age of seven had been excluded from three schools and was later labelled with a whole host of conditions – ranging from autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) to pathological demand avoidance (PDA), before finally being diagnosed with dyslexia. He had become ‘the Alphabet Kid’. His family never gave up on him, however ... Drawing lessons from Sam’s transformational journey from difficult child to budding entrepreneur, My Child’s Different offers encouragement to parents who may be concerned about what the future might hold, and demonstrates how – with the right support and positive parenting skills – their children can grow up to surprise and delight them. The book chronicles Sam’s journey from birth to adulthood, allowing readers to spot past and present patterns that may be comparable with their own children’s experiences, and provides pragmatic parenting advice that will be of benefit to any parent whose children – who may or may not have a diagnosed learning difficulty – struggle with life educationally or socially. Elaine writes with warmth and compassion as she revisits the challenges faced, the obstacles overcome and the key interventions that helped instil in Sam a sense of self-belief, a drive to succeed and an emotional intelligence beyond his years. Interspersed throughout the narrative are the reflections and insights of parenting expert Melissa Hood, who illustrates the key concepts from Sam’s story and shares practical positive parenting techniques to help parents better connect with their children. Also included are contributions from Sam himself – providing an additional, uniquely rich perspective that will help deepen parents’ understanding of their children’s feelings and emotions. Suitable for parents, educators and anyone who works with children, My Child’s Different is a celebration of all the unique qualities that those who are different bring to society. Chapters include: 1. Us, and Our Blue-Eyed Boy (The Calm Before the Storm); 2. I’m Sure It’ll All Be Fine (Pre-School); 3. Naughty, Stupid Little Child (Primary School); 4. There Has to Be Another Way (Out of School); 5. This Changes Everything (Back to School); 6. Revealing the Diamond (Secondary School); 7. Moving On Up (Sixth Form); 8. Anything Is Possible (Adulthood).

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