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Ask Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH Your Ow...
Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 251
Experience:  Over 15 years of experience as a substance abuse therapist. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker
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I have been diagnosed with bipolar type II, adhd mild, avoidance

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I have been diagnosed with bipolar type II, adhd mild, avoidance behavoir, sleep apnea, and resless legs syndrom, also severe depression. lastly a reading disorder 3rd grade level, with passive aggressive behavoir. One specialist's, one therapist, one psychologist belive this to be mostly true. Additionally, with low averages in CAPD ranges from: audiotory/visual deficits, and visuospatial skills, just to name a few. I'm confused about what are my next steps in my life that I need to do to fix all these problems. I knew that I had most of these problems most of my life, but I did not have a "name " for them, now I do. Your professional opinion, where do I need to go and get the help I need,etc...
Thank you for using JustAnswer! I'm really sorry to hear all of this you are going through. Your situation is unique but the problem of 'not knowing where to start' is very common. It sounds like there is so much going on that your feeling overwhelmed. Usually with situations like these you will need to begin by prioritizing which issues are the most important to deal with first. For example, If sleeping is the most pressing issue right now, I would say focus completely on the issue related to sleeping with the cognitive therapist or even with a sleep specialist for a c-pap machine for the apnea to help with the sleeping. Once this issue is somewhat improved move on to the next issue that is the most pressing or troublesome in your life. Prioritizing and dealing with one thing at a time will help you feel less overwhelmed and that all of these problems are more manageable.

So to summarize, I would suggest sitting down and making a list of all of the problems you are experiencing right now in your life. I would then suggest going through the list and prioritizing which issues need to be dealt with first. Choose the issue based on a rating scale of sorts that can let you know which is the most detrimental to your overall well-being. Choose that one and work on it until another issue seems more pressing.

I hope this answer helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions or if you need clarification of this answer.

Take care,
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Hello, kym, I do not know what lcsw, csac, etc. means. Please tell me. Also, already on a cpap machine. I need to know if I should be getting further help with an auiologist/pathlogist. I understand about the prioritizing method. What I need from you is what do you think is my next step. I really do not know what an audiologist does, or how a speech pathologists has to do with me. I need you to tell me if I'm on the right tract with disability? And would I even qualify for it. My fears are: Qualifying for disability, getting rehabilitated at my age, and the costs in doing that (Retired Military) Basically, who do I need to see next. One thing is, I also have problems with communicating my thoughts? please be patient with me?
Hi again,
Thanks for these questions. LCSW stands for Licensed Clinical Social Worker. CSAC stands for Certified Substance Abuse Counselor. An audiologist would be seen for someone that has hearing problems. A speech pathologist would evaluate speech and language problems. I am guessing, not really sure, that someone has referred you to them because you have either a speech or hearing problem and that either of these is effecting your ability to communicate with people or it could have something to do with your learning disability. Since you said, I have trouble communicating my thoughts, I'm guessing that is why you have been referred.
I would suggest, continuing with the disability application and process. While you are waiting for approval continue following the recommendations of the specialists already treating you. Having the disability in place would give you room to work on the rehabilitation efforts through the VA or the department of rehabilitative services. If you improve through the rehabilitation and therapy you may not need the disability anymore. I would see the audiologist and the speech pathologist to see if they are able to identify any thing they can do to help with your communication problems. I would also take the advice about seeing a cognitive therapist because they could help with the sleep but also with the communication problems. After seeing all of these people you will have more information about which way to go next.

To summarize:
I would continue with the disability.

Schedule with and see the audiologist and speech pathologist. See what they recommend.

Schedule with the cognitive therapist.

After or while waiting for the results from these professionals explore options with VA or Department of Rehabilitation Services for help.

All of these services should be at low cost to you if you use the VA and the Dept. of rehabilitative services. You may even be able to have the audiologist and speech pathologist evaluation as part of your disability application process.

I think you are on the right track. I believe all of these steps will lead you to a clearer path. I hope this answer helps. Please let me know if you need clarification.

Take care,

Edited by Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH on 1/2/2010 at 4:43 AM EST
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