Sunday, 30 November 2014

"Don't take them! It's not going to go well"

We have been making our yearly rounds at the optometrist and most recently it was our youngest 2 children's turns.  The boys are 3 and 4 years old and unfortunately, are very complex with their multiple diagnosis, including extreme sensory issues.  There was a huge voice in my head saying "don't take them!!!! It's not going to go well!!!" But there was also another voice saying "what if there is a vision problem that's causing some of the issues".  So I listened to the second voice and made an appointment warning the receptionist about my "Monsters"and she assured me that they could handle them and they would test them as best as they could.

Both boys have been into the office on a few occasions when siblings have been tested which was a great help at getting them into the office.  Both boys walked nicely into the waiting room and played nicely with the toys...hmm maybe this will be okay.  We brought their adult brother with us too help in the waiting room while I was in the office with the other child.

The assistant came and asked "who would like to be first looking into her machine for a tree".  The youngest and most willing eagerly went and lasted 30 seconds before he had enough of that.  The assistant then asked for the next child, (and he was having none of that) that's when the screaming and head banging started.  She quickly said that they don't have to do that test and he was able to calm down.

Next it was time for the actual eye exam with the optometrist and I do have to say she tried.  The first child was patient for exactly 3 minutes but her flashing lights in his eyes HURTS him and he doesn't have the vocabulary to explain this so he cries, screams, kicks and hits.  Not being able to finish the exam and seeing an astigmatism in the one eye he is being referred to an ophthalmologist.  It was then time for the 2nd child who really did not want to even enter the exam room after his brother had more than warned him with all the screaming.  I had him in my arms, just inside the exam room door, trying to help him get comfortable with the surroundings and he was holding a small toy train when the optometrist comes at him, without warning, with her light that upset his brother so much.  Hurt and upset he throws the very small train and it breaks her specialty eye exam mirror as he continues screaming and wailing.  The optometrist then says she doesn't think she should do anymore and the ophthalmologist might be a better option.


  1. Try to come up with a signal so they can tell you if it hurts, is overwhelming, or they just need a short break/diversion.

  2. That's a great idea that we will try when the kids are at a level too understand this.

  3. Not sure if it would be available to you, and you have WAY more kids than I and I am sure you have looked into this..... But we have a Pediatric Eye doc, and they are set up for every child and their needs that you could think of..... Any in your area??? Otherwise, hey you tried and so did they, hopefully next time is better....