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I started off as a pre-med major, but didn't know that I had ADHD at the time. I was bored out of my skull, even w/a 3.8 GPA. I actually said, "I don't want to spend the rest of my life looking up noses and buttcracks" when I switched majors. 

Well, the Good Lord has a sense of humor, because after I got married, I had some sort of resistance to hormonal birth control and had four kids, all with their unique medical problems--as well as noses and buttcracks, lol. 

I've spent the last twelve years of my life learning more about medicine than I ever thought possible. I was published in a magazine and hired by an author to write about my experiences with my oldest daughter & husband's diagnoses. Every. Single. Day. I have someone write me on FB or Twitter about their own medical issues, because of the stories I've written. That Creative Writing degree was something special. (eye roll) 

So.... My local university and community College have a joint program for a PA and Masters of Public Health... 

(Gah, someone is messaging me about his symptoms RIGHT NOW asking if he should go in for XYZ evaluation!!!)

... And after mulling over this course of action for a couple of weeks, talking to my husband, my closest fitness, and finally my kids,  I'm doing it. I'm not sure which allied program I want to use to get patient care hours, but I'm leaning towards surgical tech, since it has a good salary even if I can't get into the PA program the first time or two around.  (I can't move, since my husband works w/the government, and those four kids of ours have been trucked all over the place with his PhD/postdoc stuff, which is finally over.) 

I'd like to work in emergency, pediatric, or mental health, I just know there's only two mental health residencies for PA's. However, the biggest obstacle to getting people mental health treatment is the patient seeing that their problems actually are mental health problems!! So maybe getting them to an evaluation will be enough. 

 

Anyway, here I go---thanks for having the forum, which I've been lurking over the past two days, more and more certain that this is the best path. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sounds very exciting. You'll finally be trained and licensed to give out medical advice. Careful giving out advice online, I hope you preface it with the fact that you are not a licensed medical professional.  Which magazine were you published in? Sounds like you've learned a lot of great information! 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 1/5/2018 at 5:29 PM, Miaow said:

Sounds very exciting. You'll finally be trained and licensed to give out medical advice. Careful giving out advice online, I hope you preface it with the fact that you are not a licensed medical professional.  Which magazine were you published in? Sounds like you've learned a lot of great information! 

Right, I absolutely don't present myself as "giving out medical advice." I ALWAYS let people know that I'm not a doctor--I'm just a parent who's dealt with four children (and a husband!) with the same condition, and who spent six years learning to identify different symptoms in different contexts, so I could help manage my family's complex care. 

What I do tell people is: 
1) You need to get an evaluation by someone w/ specific training. Here's what to look for. 
2) When you do, you need to use XYZ language, or the provider will miss the seriousness of your condition. 
3) You need to stress how the symptoms impair your functioning in XYZ area of life.
4) You need to understand how prescribing works, because the medication isn't one-size-fits all. Here's the side effects, how they present, and how the medication titration WORKS. Talk to your doctor about all of this. 

Usually, the response I get is, "Holy ***, I had no idea about ANY of this!" 
A year later the person/family contacts me, "Our lives are incredibly better, thank you." 
It's been like this for six years, and basically, I'm just tired of not getting PAID for this knowlege, lol. 

The magazine was ADDitude, an ADHD trade publication. I've been working for/mentored by Gina Pera, an ADHD expert, for the last four years, and I've done a lot of ghostwriting for her blog. My oldest daughter has FIVE comorbidities in addition to ADHD, which led to a LIFETIME of misdiagnoses for her.  :( So, all of my learning had to happen in the school of "actually living out the consequences of bad mental health care." 

Thanks for the encouragement, everyone. <3 

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On 1/5/2018 at 9:36 AM, UGoLong said:

There is a pediatric psych residency at Nationwide Childrens in Columbus, OH.  

And you're never too old! Best wishes!

SERIOUSLY??? Nationwide Childrens had the FIRST providers that were able to connect the dots with my oldest daughter, and gave her a FABULOUS level of care. She was first able to improve on two of her more serious illnesses under their watch. Even if our whole dadgum family had to move there for a year, I WOULD LOVE to have a residency with them. <3 

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 1/17/2018 at 10:52 AM, TrekkieByDay said:

SERIOUSLY??? Nationwide Childrens had the FIRST providers that were able to connect the dots with my oldest daughter, and gave her a FABULOUS level of care. She was first able to improve on two of her more serious illnesses under their watch. Even if our whole dadgum family had to move there for a year, I WOULD LOVE to have a residency with them. <3 

My sister just got her son's ASD diagnosis from Nationwide after years of struggles. I wish we were back in Ohio sometimes as our journey with our Eleven-year-old DD (same age as her cousin actually) took much longer than it should have. 

(Hubs also has a government job.) 

Best of luck of you! (Also, I love ADDitude mag!) 

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