Brooklyn Letters presents a multidisciplinary parent-friendly lecture on Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), early childhood through the adolescence years. Dr. Lindsay Whitman, neuropsychologist, Dr. Carolyn Kessler, child psychologist, Dr. Blythe Grossberg, learning specialist and author of Asperger’s Rules, and Craig Selinger, speech language therapist, will present the changing diagnostic criteria of ASD, understanding the ASD assessment process, including how neuropsychological testing can aid with diagnosis and delineate how to best support a child with ASD, how to help children on the autism spectrum best work in school, and how the speech language therapist helps facilitate the child’s and adolescent’s social thinking and communication. Q&A will follow the one-hour lecture, and audience participation will be encouraged. Dr. Grossberg’s book Asperger’s Rules!: How to Make Sense of School and Friends will be raffled off for free to several audience members.
When: February 7th, 2013, Thursday, 7:15-9pm
Where: Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture, 53 Prospect Park West, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Cost: $25 per person or $40 per couple
To reserve a spot, please email Craig at email@example.com.
Dear Parents, Patients, and Colleagues,
I feel compelled to address a very important issue with all of you. Over the past few years, a substance called K2 or Spice has emerged as synthetic, “legal” THC-like compound. It is a combination of unregulated synthetic chemicals often mixed with a very floral scented herbal concoction and sold as a “legal” form of marijuana (however it does not contain active THC).
Teens seem to be attracted to it because 1. it does not show up on drug tests, 2. is apparently easy to get and legal- kids do not have to feel like they are lying to their parents when asked if they are smoking weed (because technically they are not), and 3. people can get very high from smoking it and it is relatively inexpensive.
I have now seen three cases in my own practice of very serious psychiatric side effects that came from using this drug, including severe anxiety, agitated and aggressive behavior, and a general sense of mental instability. There have been reports all over the country of similar effects in users and there is concern that frequent users of the substance can develop physical addiction. It is still largely unstudied and unregulated. There is also concern that it is related to several sudden cardiac deaths.
I am highly concerned that teens think that K2 (or whatever the current name of the day is) is a safe “herbal” and benign drug and thus do not consider it “using drugs” or “smoking,” etc.
This is a relatively new problem and much overlooked. But, I now hear that it easy to buy in the city- even at local delis. I think we must really talk to the kids openly and directly about it.
Direct and honest communication about drug and alcohol use is difficult for many families (primarily because kids have a difficult time being honest about their use- they do not want their social activities or freedom to be limited). But continued efforts to keep the dialogue open is so important as substance use is incredibly prevalent in most of the social lives of the NYC teens that I see in my practice.
Thanks for reading this. Please educate your kids about this issue, as I will during our visits. More information can be found online.
As always, it is a pleasure and privilege to care for you and your children.
Kari Groff, MD
Kari Groff, MD is a child and adult psychiatrist practicing in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Kari is an expert in psychopharmacology, and offers a holistic and wellness-centered approach to treatment. Her practice includes pharmacologic management of post-partum and pregnancy mood issues, ADHD, anxiety disorders, depression and bipolar disorder. She completed her fellowship in Child and Adolescent psychiatry at the NYU Child Study Center. Prior to moving to New York, she trained at the esteemed Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Groff is also a violinist and children’s songwriter. Her experience with children inspired her to create an album dedicated to understanding feelings and emotions as well to celebrate the amazing courage that kids show despite many challenging times. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 646-469-9209.
Tags: aggressive behavior, alcohol abuse, anxiety, Brooklyn Letters, cardiac deaths, Communication, drug, drug use, herbal drug, K2, legal, marijuana, mental instability, physical addiction, psychiatric side effects, Spice, THC
Minimize the problem:
• As much as possible, do not encourage your kids to side with you over their other parent. Empathize with them, help them problem solve if it feels appropriate. But remember, your child does not have the option of divorce from their parent. They need to find ways to deal with their other parent in a way that will work for them for the rest of their lives. Therefore, do not allow your children to polarize the two of you in this way. Neither you nor your ex are perfect and your child needs to learn how to have the best possible relationship with both of you that they can. Sometimes it helps to stop for a minute and remember that there was a reason you married this person in the first place, and no matter how far away that seems at this point, your children are still hanging onto those positive qualities. It is in their best interest to have as close of a bond with both of you as possible, despite whatever long list of imperfections have now presented themselves in your ex. If you don’t feel that you can be a somewhat neutral source of support for your child when it comes to issues with their other parent, find them someone else to talk to.
• Do not vent your own frustrations about your ex to your child. There are many other appropriate people to discuss your own ongoing feelings of anger and frustration about your ex with. Your child is not one of those people.
• Although you may be angry at your ex, DO find ways to be on the same team. You owe it to your children to maintain communication with your ex in some way, shape, or form, and maintain consistent rules and expectations for your kids at both houses. If you cannot communicate on the phone without fighting, try texting or emailing. If you still cannot communicate, seek help. Therapy is a great way to show children that even though you no longer live under one roof, you are all still a family and are willing to do what it takes to make the family work in a way that benefits the children without getting back together.
*Remember that you don’t have to be alone and out of social resources to seek professional help. Sometimes a therapist can be a great non-biased ear for you, your ex, and your children to vent to during this difficult time.
Susannah Gersten is a Brooklyn based psychotherapist with experience in mental health as well as community based counseling services in Park Slope, making her invaluable in building relationships with the schools and other services in the area. In her private practice, Susannah offers play therapy with young children as well as behavior management, behavior plans and other techniques that involve both children and their family. She also offers couples and family psychotherapy, in order to help the parents and family address any underlying concerns in the family system. She runs an equine assisted psychotherapy group for middle-school aged children out of Kensington stables to address anxiety, shyness and depression.
My name is Craig Selinger, and I am a speech language pathologist, also known as a speech therapist, who lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Starting in September, I will work full-time in the area; no more back and forth Manhattan commuting. My services include child speech, language, and feeding therapy and language remediation, e.g. reading and writing.
I am very excited to launch Brooklyn Letters! Seven months of steady work on the website and now it is live. Brooklyn Letters will be a dynamic forum: updated blogs, articles, and resources. We want to create services based upon your needs. Here are some future ideas/plans:
Dr. Annette Hernandez and I will soon be adding more professionals to our team.
Every member of the Brooklyn Letters team will contribute to our interdisciplinary blog. Check-in monthly for new entries.
Other ideas about the blog:
1) Contacting professors/researchers to make research more accessible to the public.
2) Extending our interdisciplinary blog to other pediatric professionals in the New York City area. If you would like to contribute to our blog, please email me your name, phone number, area of expertise, and the topic you would like to write about. I am limiting blog entries to one page and one per month. Each month will have a different professional contributor.
Did I miss an important resource? Please email me the link, and I will consider adding it.
We have a FREE Brooklyn (Park Slope and nearby neighborhoods) private business and local pediatric professional (for those offering unique services) directory.
If you are interested in small group services (3 children) please fill out this form and email it back to me. I teach language learning, literacy, and social skills to small groups. Creating these groups is cumbersome due to the difficultly coordinating schedules and matching learning needs. My goal is to organize compatible small learning groups.
If you are a pediatric professional interested in home-based services in the Park Slope and/or and nearby communities, please email me your résumé.
How can we improve this site? Email me your ideas.
I am very excited to see how Brooklyn Letters will help contribute to Brooklyn, and watch it help parents from around the world learn more about their child’s development.
Many thanks to Brent and Teresa (my amazing website designers), Amy Way (photographer), the families that allowed me to be photographed with their children, Evan, Noreen, Chino, and Maryam. It was a team effort and I appreciate everyone’s important contributions and endeavors!
We are now offering speech, language, and feeding services/therapy in Bay Ridge, Dyker Park and Dyker Heights, and Bensonhurst! If you are interested in Kristi, a speech language pathologist, coming to your home, contact Craig at firstname.lastname@example.org
We will be expanding our speech, language, and literacy services to your home in Queens- Sunnyside, Woodside, Long Island City, Astoria, and we will be expanding our speech and language services to your home in Williamsburg, Greenpoint, Bushwick.
We welcome Emily Harms, M.S. CCC-SLP- a speech language pathologist that comes to your Manhattan home. She travels to Gramercy Park, Midtown, Murray Hill, Flatiron District, Chelsea, Nolita, Soho, Greenwich Village, West Village, Battery Park City, Financial District, Lower East Side, East Village, Williamsburg
Please contact Craig for more information email@example.com
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Craig Selinger is a pediatric speech language therapist with a private practice in Park Slope, Brooklyn. He works with babies and pre-adolescents with speech, language, feeding delays and difficulties. In addition, he provides specialize tutoring services (reading, writing, speaking, and listening) for struggling learners and those with unique differences. His speech, language, literacy, and feeding team travels to your home and your child’s school throughout Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, 347-394-3485, www.brooklynlearning.com.
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© Brooklyn Letters 2013