Our Autism Story – Day 3 – “What is ABA?”
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) “is a scientific discipline concerned with analyzing the principles of learning and behavioral control, developing usable methods from these principles, and systematically applying these methods to change behavior of social significance.”
So, what the heck does that mean?!!! Here’s what it means for us… Brahm typically has therapists with him from about 8:30 in the morning to 7:00 at night. One of the main goals of ABA is behavior modification. I always draw the analogy to training a dog (I know…that sounds awful, right?!!). Brahm’s therapists work with him on reinforcing good behaviors and having consequences for bad behaviors – sounds simple, but in practice it’s a circus. Brahm is literally getting pushed to his limit, so often (VERY often), he is screaming, yelling, and melting down. Brahm’s therapists also work with him on some of his other delays (intellectual, gross motor, fine motor, potty training, speech, activities of daily living), which can include riding a bike, dancing / jumping / throwing a ball, practicing drawing lines / shapes, practicing letter recognition, bathing, dressing, etc.
Brahm’s therapists are the most wonderful ladies! They are in the trenches everyday with him, take abuses most people shouldn’t, get nowhere near the pay they should, and for some reason, they keep coming back. We consider them part of our family and are beyond lucky to have them!
P.S. – Huge shout out to our amazing neighbors in Hawthorne Hill! We moved to the neighborhood three years ago. With all of the 20-something female therapists constantly coming and going and the screaming and other sounds coming out of our house, we had to seem like a strange cross between a brothel and a circus. Thank you for accepting us and all of our craziness!