In FairyLand, there is a program that helps coordinate services such as respite care, behavior therapy, parenting classes, housekeeping and marriage therapy. In some cases this program helps pay for services temporarily if there is an urgent and critical need. Princess’s family has been participating for about a month with this program – trying to help the entire family as a whole and specifically help those in the family who are at greatest need of behavioral therapy. It was during our second meeting that the Queen got the phone call:
“Please come pick Princess up from school immediately.”
Lets back-track two hours to get the story straight.
Princess got to the horse drawn carriage with a snarl, a snide comment, and a few things thrown and kicked out of the way. Unfortunately the Queen had forgotten to warn her that a large Kitty Cat was to ride shotgun. When she got to the carriage she realized she was going to have to sit ~shudder~ in the back! In Princess’ mind, when someone takes the front seat, she always gets to sit in the seat directly behind. Unfortunately, this is her little sister with Autism’s seat. The Queen arrived just as Princess forcefully grabbed little sister and was physically removing her from the seat and shoving her out of the carriage as well! The Queen was able to separate them at some point between the crying, the screaming and the bloodshed. She relegated Princess to the rear seat – ALL the way in the BACK of the carriage. Princess would hurt people if she passed by them in an enclosed space such as the carriage, so the Queen told her to hop in through the very back of the carriage. What’s worse than sitting in the WAY back of the 15 passenger carriage? The humiliation of having to go in through the rear doors while everyone in the kingdom watches!
In the time it took to drive a quarter of the way over the river and through the woods littlest sisters Fairy Pre-School, Princess had thrown both shoes, her sandwich, a few pencils, a notebook, a water bottle and finally her cookies (mmm…school snack) at the Queen. The cookies flew up and busted to pieces on the windshield (they were swept up and pitched out the window – never to be seen again).
By the time Princess arrived at school she was silently fuming. Sir Knight came out and calmly requested that Princess go to the office if she could not be in control of her anger as a sort of self-imposed quiet time. She reluctantly got out of the carriage and went to spend some time in (somewhat) quiet meditation.
Fast forward two hours. The Queen is in the middle of the meeting with three therapists, an Autism and behavior specialist, a giant and the Fairy Godmother. She is speaking about the psychiatrist who believes Princess’s anxieties and rage are simply by-products of her ADHD. The words are hanging in the air as if in a speech bubble when the phone rings. It is the school explaining that Princess got angry during class, threw a magic wand (which hit a student and turned him into a frog), kicked a throne across the room and stormed out of class. The principal told her in no uncertain terms that Princesses were never allowed to behave that way. The Queen is to come pick her up immediately and she may return tomorrow, provided that her behavior is more appropriate.
Now, this story does have a happy ending. Princess, her school, the Queen and family are all doing much better thanks to Princess taking a new medication the Queen lovingly refers to as *the magic pill* that seems to be helping with Princess’s uncontrollable rage, anxiety, and frustrations. Her school and classmates are happier because the joyful Princess is back; gone is the Princess excelling in tantrums explosive enough to destroy the kingdom. The Queen is happier because there is peace in the home, and what family doesn’t thrive in times of peace?
Overall, 63% of the parents said *this magic pill* was very beneficial for their child, 20% said it helped their child a little, 6% said it had no effect, and 11% said their child’s behavior was worse. Although 89% of the children were taking *the magic pill* for hyperactivity, other problems, including aggression, tantrums, anxiety, and sleep disturbances, were common and were somewhat improved. Hagerman et al. 1995