submitted by Dr. Maria DiDonato, D.Ed. Psychologist, Achievement & Wellness Center, www.achievewell.net
Judy (not her real name) is an 11-year-old student with autism whose unpredictable impulse controls were challenging to those around her. Her outbursts were sometimes aggressive, causing the adults to have concern for the repercussions from her behaviors.
Behavioral management programs were ineffective in preventing the impulsivity and aggression, which generally seemed unprovoked. The calming strategies she learned were often helpful after the fact. Parents and teachers were searching for something that would help prevent the frequent overreactions.