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I have two sons and when I was pregnant with my second son, my older son was diagnosed with ADHD. He’d been having a lot of what everybody else would term difficulties. The day-to-day operations of getting dressed, eating, brushing teeth, etc, he needed somebody full-time to follow him around and prompt him on everything he was required to do to get ready for the day. At school, he was rolling around on the floor and had a lot of kind of classic symptoms of autism and/or other diagnoses. He either wasn’t completing his school work during class or just not starting it at all.

We brought him up completely natural¸ organic, healthy lifestyle. No sugar, he wouldn’t watch TV, he wasn’t immunized, he loved a plant based diet. We had a lot of different modalities that we were using with him and it got to a point where he was coming home and asking to die. He just didn’t want to be here at all. So, we chose to try medication. We were at the end of our rope and there was nothing else that was available for us at that time, so we tried for 2 years on different medications. That was a complete other set of nightmares that added to everything.

He started having rages. Yelling and throwing himself around and trying to get his hands on anything he could break or destroy. He was totally out of control. When the rages passed he would be so sorry and confused. He didn’t understand what was going on and why he did it. My son is not violent and had never been before taking these medications. This was behaviour that was so out of character that I knew the medications were not working to add to his quality of life. He didn’t have friends when he was on these medications; he couldn’t interact with others, didn’t know how to laugh and was very unhappy. He was getting more work done at school and the teachers didn’t have to supervise him so much but did his grades improve? No.

And then, fortunately, I had a conversation with my Dad. I told him that nothing was working for my son and he said, “Well, you need to get in contact with Gary Douglas and make an appointment with him.” And so I looked up Gary online and thought; “Oh my god, he’s going to be $400 an hour. I can’t call him every 2-3 days when everything just goes completely mental and breaks down at home.” Then I saw that there was a class we could take. So, my son and I went out to Vancouver. We completed an Access Bars class and that was instantly amazing. Within 2 weeks of running his bars and continuing to run his bars, he jumped in the car after school and said to me “I have my happy back, mom” and I just remember crying all the way home. Before this he would get in the car and be angry. He would not talk no matter what I said to him. It was just such a huge difference and he hasn’t gone backwards.

His tutors and his teachers have mentioned that he has a sense of self that not many children have. He has a sense of himself, has a sense of humor, he’s a happy kid. He’s different, but he’s so okay with being different. And we use the tools every day with him. And if we hadn’t, I don’t know where we would be. It’s just been amazing, absolutely amazing.

In the mid-90s, when Gary Douglas was offering classes in New Zealand and Australia, my Dad went to his classes. And I didn’t know at the time, I was travelling around New Zealand at the time and I can recall him using some of the tools and the questions with me. When I mentioned Dad to Gary he remembered him, and that was cool. Now I get to share tools and questions with my Dad.

When Gary says that once you start using the tools of Access it changes your family, it really changes your family. Like my dad attended classes in the 90’s and it changed me without Dad ever POC and PODing me or telling me what he was doing. Now it’s third generation. My kids are using it on me.

~ Louise Derksen , Contributing Author

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