Today I took Duncan in to a new doctor for some psychological testing that SSI is making us do. Because he is now 18 and a legal adult, he has to answer the questions all by himself. The doctor told me I was welcome to sit in the room and watch, but that I could not answer any of the questions, or even help Duncan to answer the questions. Well, this oughta be good, I thought to myself as I obediently took my seat in the fake leather chair in the corner.
I was not disappointed.
First question: So Duncan, what disabilities do you have that you feel qualify you for SSI income?
Duncan: (looks at me in desperation, then takes a very long pause) Well, uh, I'm not very good at soccer....
Dr: Do you ever feel you have special powers that other people don't have?
Duncan: Oh yes.
Dr: What kind of special powers do you have?
Duncan: Sometimes I am very afraid when I am home alone that someone will try to break in to my house.
Dr: That is your power?
Dr: Who would try to break into your house? Someone specific or just in general?
Duncan: I'm not really sure.
At another part of the test, the doctor would read two words, and Duncan would have to explain how the two words were alike. The first two words were two and seven.
Duncan: Uh, well, if you take two away from seven you get five.
And then a little later, he surprised both me and the doctor with his next answer.
The two words were denial and acceptance. How are those two words alike?
Duncan, without hesitating: They are both choices.
Wow. That's deep, man. Really deep.
What did not surprise me:
Duncan is really good at adding and subtracting numbers in his head and he does not know who wrote Hamlet.
What did surprise me:
He knows what the equator is and he knows who Martin Luther King Jr. is.
I should have known better than to be surprised by what he knows. Don't let him fool you. There is more to him than meets the eye.
Perhaps my favorite part of the interview though, was at the end when I finally got my chance to fill in the gaps in his medical history. The psychologist looked at the list of medications Duncan takes, which are two anti-depressants and one for anxiety, and then he asks me,
Does his doctor believe he is depressed and anxious?
Well, by golly, my guess would be that yes indeedee she DOES believe he is depressed and anxious, since SHE WAS THE ONE THAT PRESCRIBED THOSE MEDS, YOU DOLT!!
His next question was even better:
Is his doctor comfortable with the diagnosis of high functioning autism?
I don't recall that she and I ever had a discussion about her level of comfort with his diagnosis, but I think it is safe to assume that she is plenty comfortable with it, since SHE is the one that made the diagnosis.
Crazy psychologist anyway.