Musings on Living with Mental Disability

[slightly expanded from my social media post] The light is fading... My brain isn't working well lately. As someone with life-long depression and decades of chronic pain and fatigue, I regularly go through ups and downs of mental functioning (separate from mood), as I have for many years. I know the cycle, but the downs… Continue reading Musings on Living with Mental Disability

Behavior Modification: Use Sparingly and With Caution

In both cases, a preteen client was being physically violent. However, the two situations required very different responses. In one case, a behaviorist approach worked well for everyone involved, including the client. In the other, it would have been catastrophic, especially for the client.

And yet again, ABA: what’s wrong with it, and what can be changed

Some thoughts that keep floating around in my mind lately, particularly in response to conversations I see on social media: I’ve said some positive things in the past about certain versions and applications of ABA. While I’m not retracting those statements, I feel I need to point out a few things. 1. Apparently, I have… Continue reading And yet again, ABA: what’s wrong with it, and what can be changed

Open Letter to ABA Folks: On the Word “No.”

If you have not done so, please read the introduction to this letter series before continuing: Overview of this letter: Section 1: About the word "no" and why it is important Section 2: Observed ABA practices in teaching "no" and why they are problematic Section 3: Brief recap of section 2 Section 4: Practical… Continue reading Open Letter to ABA Folks: On the Word “No.”

An Open Letter to ABA Folks: Introduction

Dear ABA therapists and technicians, I've met a good number of you over the years. The majority of you love the kids you work with, and want to do well by them. So, for the sake of those children, please listen to some critiques of your methods. Before I start: 1) I do not categorically… Continue reading An Open Letter to ABA Folks: Introduction

Furthur nuances of ABA-based therapies

I've been seeing a lot of discussion online lately about ABA-based therapies.* Can these therapies ever be done right? How can you tell when a therapy is damaging even though it is play-based, uses no aversives, and doesn't seem unpleasant for the child undergoing it? Are stressful therapies ok in small doses? Most people, including… Continue reading Furthur nuances of ABA-based therapies