Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Yesterday we had a run away scare...

Yesterday I was at home feeling not too good from some tests that I am going through due to some stomach issues. I was in bed, and I got a call. I saw that it was from the hospital that our son is staying at. I was so happy I was going to get to talk to him, yet, I was in for a shock.

The counselor on the other end introduced herself and said that Taylor was a runaway from the hospital. My HEART SUNK! I am about 70 or so miles from there, so I couldn't run outside and just look for him. She said that he had been in a good place all morning, but when he had gone to school there on the grounds, someone or something and had made him mad and he ran out of the building. My heart just hurt. The hospital is in an area that isn't really a bad area, but it is very unfamiliar to us since we don't live there and that scared us a lot. There is also a high school near by and there are always kids out there so I was afraid if Taylor would run to one of them that would happen to be in the wrong crowd. I was afraid he would be hit by a car, as it is on a very busy street. I was afraid, as it was cold and he had no coat on. I immediately called my husband, and we were just in pure shock! We were helpless to say the least!!! They had called the police and they were there scouring the area. I started thinking and called them back. Taylor will hide under bushes if he is afraid... they needed to know that. I relayed that message.
About an hour or so later, the call came in that they had found Taylor. He was on the property, down at his garden on site. That made me feel such a relief. They were trying to talk him back to the unit. They promised to have him call me when he reached there. Not too long afterwards, the call came in. It was Taylor, and you could hear the disappointment in his voice. I told him that we had been so worried. In his mind, there was nothing wrong with what he had done as he had stayed on campus. He doesn't understand the worry or concern. I told him that I hoped he could get to the place where he could talk about things like that with the staff instead of running. I told him how PROUD I was to have him make such a good choice of not leaving campus as that would have been so dangerous. He was just speaking to me in Uh-huh, and uh-uh answers. What had lead him to his meltdown was there was a stereo in the classroom. He was either trying to adjust the volume or the channel and the worker told him it was not his to touch, and that he needed to ask permission. He took the cue wrong (very normal for him or Asperger's kids) and saw it as a threat or a challenge. Instead of posturing, which he does from time to time.... he just decided to run!

Which, leads me to the Autism Tip of the Day: We need to pass laws and insist that our police force take educational training on people with disorders. We have had to deal with the police on many occasions when Taylor is a run away. Many of them get very cocky with a very know it all attitude on troubled teens. My son is not a troubled teen, he is a young man with a disability. I am not saying this for my son's protection but for anyone's protection that has a disability. We have had parenting lectures again and again from the police, which might work on a normal child without disabilities, but they don't work on someone with autism. We have been told to hold our son down with physical force, which will get the situation so out of control that someone would get hurt. They need to know facts about disorders and not give out poor information for people that don't have the resources to find the answers. They need to be equipped with support in the area for disabilities. We, believe it or not, had one officer tell us that Taylor is always so nice and such a good kid, he just didn't understand it.... DUH!!!! You don't live with it, you haven't been trained. He went on to tell us that he almost tased Taylor with a Taser Gun to *TEACH HIM A LESSON*! Is this serving and protecting the community or is this being an ASS? We have had one tell us that Gordon must be the step dad and this is the reason for the outburst. We have had them tell us to put him into a hospital that they saw a lot of success rate.... it was a drug and alcohol hospital. It is so ridiculous the info they have. Again that hospital may be good for a kid on drugs or alcohol, but put Taylor in a not good place. We, the community must make sure that people with disabilities are being treated as so. We, the parents of these young people with disabilities must also teach our kids that they need to tell the officers their name, their telephone number and that they have Asperger's which is a form of Autism, otherwise the police won't know.

On the flip side, we have had three of four officers returning Taylor from run away status that are very kind and really tried diligently.

Tomorrow's subject is also about laws of harboring a runaway, and what we as a community needs to do about that, especially when the runaway has a disability.

1 comment:

Didi said...

WHEW I am SO glad they found him and that he made the good choice to stay on the campus. Colin isn't a 'runner' but sometimes we get our communication mixed up and can't find him where we expect to for one reason or another. Then we have to try to 'think like Colin' and figure out where he would go next. Sometimes that is difficult because his mind doesn't work the same way ours does. It sure is scary!