DoDmerb DQ

Discussion in 'DoDMERB' started by mailman, Feb 22, 2012.

  1. mailman

    mailman New Member

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    Hey everyone, i've been visiting this site for a few months now and today i registered seeking some help.

    I was just notified this week by DoDmerb that i was disqualified. Reason? "Mental disorder, history" in particular asperger's. HOWEVER! Let me give you guys a little insight first.

    If i'm not mistaken DoDmerb regs say that as long has you haven't taken meds,therapy or any sort of behavioral/mental issue after the age 13 you qualify. Guess what?

    Never taken/been on medication

    Never received nor needed therapy

    Never had any behavioral or significant mental issues. If one investigated one would find that through out my ENTIRE student career(from elementary up until today) one would find i was one of the best behaved students. So getting a waiver should be no problem right? I hope so. But my Det told me they wont pursue a waiver for me(my DQ letter said i can apply for a waiver however) because they believe it would get denied due to a low SAT score. One of my Cadre suggested retaking the SAT[hopfully] boost my score up a bit and then apply for a waiver. While that's very possible i feel that i should contest this DQ and file an appeal if possible. Simply because i have no history of aspergers. "But everyone who has it has a history of it!" well technically speaking i don't. No medical or mental records whatsoever(mental meaning if i required or had therapy which as stated i didn't).

    Simply put i was diagnosed at 4 and well.....raised a nomral child and had a normal life and what mild symptoms i ever had, have dramatically decreased for the past 7-8 years(i do wish to be undiagnosed) . I will admit i did receive extra test time and for a reader to read aloud my questions but i NEVER used either. I always refused and i always finished the tests within the allotted time and in most cases before all the other students. And yes i did pass said tests=p And in 8th grade i was put into a self-contained classroom BUT WAIT LET ME EXPLAIN THAT. I was put in that classroom NOT for reasons related to my aspergers but because i had transferred from a suburban/rural school type to an urban school type. And after a year my parents put me in a self-contained class because they thought i would make more friends. Again they did NOT put me in there because of my aspergers(honestly i hated the fact that i was put in there with a passion, the other kids clearly had behavioral problems and disorders. I did not, i was so different from them and i hated that i was being categorized as such a student). I functioned normally in regular classroom even taking AP and IBO classes in high school.

    So what did i do to take care of my remedial? Got an up to date evaluation. The man who evaluated me put my test scores in the report. Here's how my tests scores went.

    Average
    High average
    Low average
    average
    average
    low average(math, my weakest subject)
    average
    High average(specifically stating excellent for memory and learning skills)
    Average
    average
    Average
    "within normal limits"

    It then goes on to state that "Mr.[me] seemed to have a positive view of himself, he has no reported psychological problems. His response indicate he that he is normal in his assertiveness and friendliness to other people."

    Now the overall report is about 5 pages long. But the report goes on to say that the only traits i continue to exhibit strong interests(meaning i REALLY like the things i'm into),detailed speech and limited voice inflection. Next page it goes on to say a couple things such as "Mr.[me] reported no significant psychological distress or interpersonal difficulties"

    "Taken together Mr.[me] presentation and test results suggest that, although he displays some features of Aspergers disorder, they are relatively mild and do not seem to impair his functioning significantly. Thus, they might be better characterized as PDD-NOS. Mr.[me] is extremely interest in a career in the Air Force, and there is nothing in his cognitive or psychological tests results to suggest that he will be unable to contribute capably. In fact, the regular work with military technology and regimented, disciplined lifestyle may be particularly suited to his personality"

    Now i hope you don't think i'm over obsessive. I'm just very motivated and passionate to get this cleared up as i really wish to serve my country(my reasons for wanting to do ROTC are more than just the butterbars. I have deep personal reasons). But Aspergers has never interfered with my daily life habits.

    I do have a meeting with my det commander tomorrow. Hopefully he can do something for me. But i guess what i'm asking is what are my chances of a waiver? Or if i can appeal should i? If i do appeal how do i prove to DoDmerb that i am capable for service?

    Thanks in advanced!
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2012
  2. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    DODMERB deals in "black and white." There are no degrees of gray - you either "have" or "had" the condition, or you don't. By all of your information, you admit to having it, and your current medical evaluation states the same.

    Thus, their finding of "does not meet" the medical standard, is accurate.

    It is now up to the Army and their medical staff to decide whether or not to grant the waiver, it is out of DODMERB's hands now.
     
  3. Vista123

    Vista123 Member

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    Mailman-
    I am a neuro-developmental therapist on a medical diagnostic team. I diagnose/not diagnose autism, aspergers, obsessive compulsive disorder etc all day long.

    Unfortunately, given your age-you are coming from a time in the medical field when Aspergers was (and continues to be) over diagnosed to the EXTREME.

    In fact it is likely that Asperger Syndrome will be eliminated from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.This may reverse the drastic increase in Asperger diagnoses that has taken place over the last 10 to 15 years.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/01/opinion/i-had-asperger-syndrome-briefly.html?_r=1

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/01/opinion/aspergers-history-of-over-diagnosis.html

    I am sorry that you are having to deal with the fall out of being an interesting kid. I hope you can navigate this. Feel free to P.M.

    Good Luck
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2012
  4. mailman

    mailman New Member

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    With all do respect its not a medical evaluation and my neuro-evaluation does not diagnose me with aspergers. It merely points out I exhibit a couple mild characteristics.

    Please take no offense to my post. My father went through law shool so pointing out things to the exact detail runs in the family=p Not that it matters since I'm dealing with people who see in black and white=\
     
  5. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    That is the true crux for you. You do not have Det support.

    You stated you intend to stay in AFROTC, and this exam was not for the purpose of applying for the AFA.

    This may be true, but you are incorrect. You had an IEP in school, that is why you were given extra testing time and a reader. The IEP was based on a diagnosis. You had to at one point sit down with the GC and a school psychologist. I worked in the education system for 5 yrs in 3 different states, all of them followed this procedure. From there they decide if you need an IEP. For you, they agreed that you needed an IEP. Hence, you have a record.

    Waivers are not given because of a high scoring SAT, they are given because the DQ would not impact the mission. Some DQ's are hard lines.

    All of this being stated, let's go back to point 1. The CC will not support you. I could be nice and sweet and blow smoke up your arse, or honest. I prefer honesty.

    You want to serve in the AF, but the way AFROTC works is you must attend SFT to be commissioned. The selection board includes your SAT scores and CC rec, @ 50% of the entire score.

    As I read your post, you have issues here on both sides. The CC will not support you, and you admit a low SAT.

    I think you need to address every aspect simultaneously, and your peer was correct take the SAT again, not for a waiver purpose, but for SFT selection.
     
  6. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    My response is not directed at the original poster. And I'm not giving any advise. And my opinion is simply as a parent.

    Opinion: If one of my kids did something, was treated for something, broke a bone, etc... prior to age 5, and at no time EVER did it have an affect on their life after that age, I sure in hell wouldn't be claiming it on an application unless it was specifically being asked about. Just like when you are asked if you "Illegally" used drugs or alcohol. I sure wouldn't put something down about drinking wine with dinner at a family christmas dinner. I guess it would be like telling the police of all the times you were speeding, running a red light, etc... but was never caught.

    I am not condoning lying. On the contrary. I am saying that if you consider such a thing to be insignificant and irrelevant, then you probably shouldn't have brought it up in the first place. And again, I am NOT directly responding to the original poster. For all I know, the asperger's diagnosis was in your medical records and your doctor put it down. I'm simply saying that when people fill out certain forms, documents, applications, etc... look at what the REAL MEANING and purpose is of the question, and answer accordingly with relevance. If specific questions are asked, then answer them specifically with relevance. Again; a general OPINION about general application medical questions. Not responding directly to the OP.
     
  7. Vista123

    Vista123 Member

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    Mailman,
    I want to agree with Pima on this.

    Like I Pm'd you unless you have stellar stats the likelihood of getting a waiver is slim. People just dont understand this diagnosis and the fact that this over identification can damage children, adolescents and adults.

    If your objective is to be an officer in the military than you are already well on your path-congratulations! continue on this path. whether you actually have a disorder or not may be challenged. whether that disorder will/or will not affect you ability to participate in a service academy may be challenged. However, unless your stats are very good they will not BE challenged.

    As an adolescent it-is-what-it-is is very difficult to understand or appreciate, but your situation may fall under this category.

    PIMA-though an IEP is based on a diagnosis developed by an assessment by a developmental pediatrician, psychologist, psychiatrist etc, that does not mean that the diagnosis is correct or that an IEP is indeed needed. You may be 'allowed' many adaptions based on an IEP but you do not have to access them. and that diagnosis may be wrong. pure-and simple. I often say that I can find a dysfunction in ANYONE-and everyone would BENEFIT from adaptions. There is a difference between benefit and need..
     
  8. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Vista,

    I am not disagreeing with you, especially regarding Aspergers. When we went through the process yrs ago, if you said Asperger's nobody knew what that meant. Now, it is almost as if, they are a boy, and have social issues, wham you have Aspergers.

    I think any parent who has an "aspy" child can immediately see it in other children. They have some very unique aspects that they all share, both mental and physical. You can chime them off and see the parent of a 9 yo just keep nodding their head going, yep, has that, yep, that too, yep, yep, yep.

    Interestingly enough in Bullet's family on one side, all of his cousins have a male child that is either autistic, or aspy. None of the cousins knew of the diagnosis for the other kids, except the autistic child. Aspy had back a decade ago a negative connotation as a highly functioning autistic child. I preferred to always say our DS has social ADD. People viewed the word ADD differently than autism.

    CC, I understand your POV, but this is different than the doc saying at 4 you broke your collar bone, and you are fit now. This diagnosis as vista stated includes multiple docs. You just don't get diagnoses Aspy by one doc. It is multiple docs with each conducting their own tests. It than goes to the school, and with the results from these docs, they determine the course of action, which will now be placed in your permanent school transcript. So for the OP, he has it not only medically in his files, but also in his academic files.

    Again, I agree with Vista, it is being over diagnosed these days, but I think 10 yrs ago, it was very new and when he was diagnosed it was a unique diagnosis. I also think because of some of the points that they use to determine an aspy, he was way too young to be diagnosed.

    For example, a couple of the physical questions to diagnose Aspy, regard things that all 4 yr olds have. Bed wetting and sensitivity to noise. Gross fine motor skills too. Mental ones are being advanced in Math, but does not "get" personal space or not everything is meant literally. For example if you tell a 4 yr old they can have it when the cow jumps over the moon, they will watch the moon every night for that cow. An 8 yo knows that means nope, it ain't happening.

    It is not uncommon for a 4 yo to get upset by loud noises, but for Aspy's it is a nightmare to be in a room with 30 people and music going. It is sensory overload.

    IMPO, Aspy should not be a medical DQ, many people with Aspy will learn how to work the world for their needs. It does not require drugs. They will never grow out of it, but they will be able to work with it. Like I said before it is a social ADD.
     
  9. Vista123

    Vista123 Member

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    This is such an off topic conversation but going through this application process has made me rethink some of how I do my job.

    Our medical diagnostic team recently was faced with the dilemma of diagnosing a 2 1/2 year old with anxiety disorder. (now I have to say I have tested over 5,000 infants, toddlers and children and this is EXTREMELY rare to be even possibly considering this diagnosis for this age). It did flash through my brain that diagnosing this now will take away opportunities later. what if this child ended up wanting to go to a service academy 15 years from now. It's especially disconcerting when you know that much of this is treatable (not curable) so in affect the behaviors that caused that diagnosis can be eliminated -but the diagnosis will be there forever in some sort of paper trail.

    One side note- when my younger son (not the one applying now) was in second grade he fell through a hayloft and broke his calcaneus. The treatment plan by the orthopedist was to surgically reset with a pin in place. I refused and insisted on bone manipulation and serial casting. When explaining my rational I wanted to make sure that he had all options/choices/ opportunities in place when he was older and a pin may eliminate some of those options.

    The problem with a diagnosing a child with Aspergers is that the only real benefit is educational services that he (statistically more males) may receive. It should be that instead of a heavy handed diagnosis we should be able to formulate adaptions based on needs rather than a label.

    BTW-I do see the irony in that I complain about labeling but it is my job to label.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
  10. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Vista,

    I don't think we are going off topic too much. I say that because we both agree Aspergers has become more prominent regarding diagnosis with this generation. Due to that fact alone, there will be more and more posters that may have this issue.

    I still believe Asperger's is a disorder, and I still believe many are mis-diagnosed, as a fail safe. Like I stated a 4 yo IMPO should never be diagnosed with this, basically due to the reason that they might just be developmentally delayed.

    In the OP's case it may be worthwhile to visit someone like you and have it re-visited to see if it was not the correct diagnosis.

    The aspects that I have learned from with my child will be easy to see even now. I will use my child as an example:

    1. Boys...as you stated it is like albinism, it has a higher rate in boys than girls.
    ~ Check
    2. Birth weight. Studies that I have seen show this child usually is a significantly larger birth weight than siblings.
    ~ Check, he weighed 9 lbs 4 oz, and his closest sibling weighed 7 lbs 12. I gained only 29 lbs with him.
    3. Other family members have autism or aspergers.
    ~Check. Bullet's uncle was the not quite right uncle, Dad's side. As I stated every cousin, had a male child with some form. It was if it skipped a generation. All of these cousins were children of a different sibling of his Dad's. Aunt Y had one grandchild. Aunt Z had 1 Aspy, and 1 autistic. We had 1.
    4. Socially they do not get spatial awareness.
    ~ Check. DS had to be taught it is not okay to get up close and in someone's space.
    5. Socially inappropriate
    ~ Check. DS had to be taught that not every comment is funny, and to be aware of others when you say something.
    6. Gross fine motor skills
    ~ Check. DS is 17 and if you ask him to draw, to this day it would look like a 10 yr old did it. Cutting on lines is still not happening.
    7. Mathematically/scientifically/technologically they are smart. Language arts call it a day
    ~ Check. Explain it once to him and he has it, including Physics/Calc. Today I still remind him, you cannot start a sentence with AND or BUT.
    8. Rule follower
    ~ Check. This goes back to the taking everything literal. If you say do it at this time, or don't do it, you will. I like to call it from an educator's perspective...the police officer in the classroom. They will not bend, and you know they will follow your direction to the rule.
    9. Repetitive quirks almost OCD
    ~Check. DS drove me insane when he was a toddler. If his shoe laces were not tied right according to him, there was a hissy fit. I got so fed up, I bought him vans to lower my frustration level. Our family funny story is his pouting rock. We lived in AK for 3 yrs., and would camp almost every weekend over the summer. He would as soon as we got there find his pouting rock...the place he would go when he was upset. People would ask where he is at? We would say on his pouting rock.


    There are also the medical issues:
    1. Bed wetting past the 3-4 yr old marker.
    ~ Check. Before he was diagnosed with Aspergers, we went medical route, and they told us, that because he was such a "big" child, his body was growing faster than his internal organs could keep up with. DS is 6'4, 260 lbs. His brother is 5'10 147 lbs, and sister is 5'2 115 lbs. We accepted this from the urologist. He was taller than his brother (4 yrs older) by the time he was 8. He was taller than his sister by the time he was 2.

    2. Noise sensitivity.
    ~ Check. We would have parties at our home, and find him on the stairs with his fingers in his ears because to him it was too loud. Teachers would tell me when he was in 1st to 3rd grade he would basically melt down in class when the kids got too loud. Thank God for his teachers, because they came to me, and we together decided to tell him, if it gets too loud, ask to go to the bathroom or the water fountain before he got too upset.

    3. Gross skills physically
    ~ Check. They have problems skipping and hand eye coordination. Coordination is not their forte. Again, at 4 that is not an issue, but at 8 it is a signal if they have a funky gate.

    I have to say don't know one Aspy that is on meds. All of them that I know, have learned to work it out for them using the positive attributes to overcome their weaknesses.

    That point being stated, I can get why the AF has a hard line on this disorder. I am proud of how we taught our son how to survive in this world using his own coping skills. However, the AF or any branch can't give a waiver believing every parent taught the cadet how to cope/manage the disorder. They have to assume the worst.

    I know that sounds mean or horrible, but honestly, they look at the forest, not the tree. They have to make sure that they are doing what is best for every one.

    If the OP reads my checklist and says, I had none of these, go to a doc. and get this addressed now. When I say a doc, I mean a specialist to fight it. Not just Dr. Joe Schmoe.

    The AF DQ can be fought. Bullet has stated on this site that months prior to commissioning with a UNT slot from ROTC was DQ'd for scoliosis. AF was firm in this decision. His parents went to a doc that was renown in this field, published in the AMA, in People magazine and had privileges at one of the top hospitals in the nation. He submitted the exam, and he was clear to go. Flew fighters for 20 yrs.

    If he can say, yes, this is me to a tee, than understand you can't fight it because the AF is stating Asperger's is a DQ.

    It is up to him right now, only he can say where he falls within the parameters.
     

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