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    #247209 - 05/29/20 11:14 PM Pathalogical Demand Avoidance
    MumOfThree Offline

    Registered: 04/07/11
    Posts: 1694
    Loc: Australia
    So twice in the last fortnight two different people I know have mentioned PDA (Pathological Demand Avoidance). Which I had never heard of before. Doing some reading it's possible that this is a better explanation of one of our children than anything else I have ever come across.

    I found this transcript particularly interesting:

    Searching the board I haven't found any meaningful discussion of this condition, I am wondering if anyone has done any research, considered it for their child? Has any thoughts?

    Edited by MumOfThree (05/30/20 04:05 AM)

    #247210 - 05/30/20 09:51 AM Re: Pathalogical Demand Avoidance [Re: MumOfThree]
    pinewood1 Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 01/25/19
    Posts: 41
    Most people in the ASD community don't put much stock in different "types" of ASD anymore, because there isn't really a lot of evidence that said subtypes are meaningful and people can move between them throughout their lifespan. (What the person in the transcript says about autistic subtypes is not accurate; ASD-1 is not the same as the old Asperger's diagnosis.)

    I agree with the person in the transcript that PDA is an overpathologizing and prejudicial name for this profile, and that describing it as masked autism is more accurate. (The DSM-5 allows for autism to be diagnosed in masked cases, actually: it says that the symptoms can be masked by learned strategies.)

    Here's a description of what masking autism is like by someone in the community.

    #247211 - 05/31/20 02:10 AM Re: Pathalogical Demand Avoidance [Re: MumOfThree]
    MumOfThree Offline

    Registered: 04/07/11
    Posts: 1694
    Loc: Australia
    Pinewood we are pretty well versed with Autism in our family, having more than one person on the spectrum, and very well versed with masking, having had to go to great lengths to clarify one of those diagnoses.

    From my reading about PDA, which is far more extensive than just the article I linked to, it does seem that there is some argument about whether part of ASD is where this really fits. I didn't say much in my initial post, but PDA doesn't really gel with ASD for me... This seems much more logically to be a very specific expression of anxiety, which may or may not co-occur with ASD.

    The person I am thinking of really doesn't fit ASD, and the question has been asked more than once. Nor does any current diagnosis, or other ideas that have been explored, fit this part of their profile... They do have Demand Avoidance in SPADES, though not with violence. Possibly the absence of violence is because most of the recommended strategies are how we already parent. One of the two people I mention bringing this to my attention had been given a flier for teachers with strategies for teachers on how to speak to a child with PDA and my first response was "How bizarre to recommend those things as strategies, that's just how we communicate in general (or try to)."

    Edited by MumOfThree (05/31/20 02:11 AM)


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