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Life with neurological disorders can be difficult, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be filled with joy.

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I blog on life with neurological disorders, education, and finding joy in it all by the grace of God. My education degree and times spent in elementary school classrooms has helped me understand how these disorders can affect children as well. 

Note: I am not a doctor, so any advice I give is not to be taken as that from a medical professional. My advice is based on research and personal experience only. Before you change your lifestyle or begin a new management system for your health, please first confer with your personal doctor.


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Living with Tourette Syndrome, OCD tendencies, and anxiety has inspired me to connect with and help others who struggle with neurological disorders.

Here are some blog posts to get you started:

7 comments

  • Melissa Wood on March 18, 2014 at 9:42 pm said:

    Hi Brittany –
    I stumbled upon your blog on accident. My 15 year old son was formally diagnosed with Tourettes last November (although looking back he has had it for a long time). Being fairly new to this diagnosis, I am still trying to educate myself and help my son educate himself and become a self-advocate. I typed in #tourettes on my twitter, and found several tweets by you, which led me to your page. What I would really like to find is some good books for both my husband and I as well as my son, Logan. You mentioned a book called ‘The Front of the Class,’ by Brad Cohen, in one of your posts. Would you recommend this for our son? Do you have any other books you would recommend, even just on an overview that is not to ‘medically’ written. Thanks for any help. I am overwhelmed when I try and search for books. Melissa from NE. :)

    • brittanyfichterwrites@gmail.com on March 19, 2014 at 5:03 am said:

      Hi there, Melissa. You’re definitely in an area that’s somewhat difficult to navigate. The good news is that it’s definitely not impossible. There aren’t as many resources on Tourettes as I would like, but that’s one of the main reasons I started to write and research. You’re very right in wanting your son to learn how to self-advocate (something I’ll be writing a blog on pretty soon, actually). I’m working on that now as an adult, and I wish I had started sooner. As for resources for your son to read, I have a few. I suggest you read the books first, making sure they’re what you consider appropriate for your son (All parents’ views of “appropriate” differ a bit.), and then pass on what you think is right for your son.

      1) “Front of the Class” is an inspiring book, written by a teacher. Most of the book should be just fine. If you’re sensitive to some language, however, you might want to scout that out first. Overall, it’s a fantastic book, starting from the author’s boyhood into adulthood.
      2) “The World’s Strongest Librarian” is also a great story. It’s serious, and yet funny at the same time. The author is LDS, and there is some cursing, I believe, so again, I would read it and see if you think it’s alright for him. Either way, you’ll definitely learn from those books.
      3) Another book, while geared toward younger children, is called, “I can’t Stop! A Story about Tourette Syndrome.” While the reading level is far below the average 15-year-old’s reading level, the story gives a good, basic explanation of what it feels like to have Tourettes. In fact, it’s possibly the best basic book on Tourettes I’ve ever read. You can find my review of the book here.

      There are other books out there on Tourettes, but many of them are self-published, and I haven’t read them. (Depending on the book, self-published might be more difficult to read, as they aren’t required to have spelling, grammar, or readability critiqued.) Again, I would suggest reading any you find before giving them to him.

      Honestly, when I began to accept that I did, in fact, have Tourettes, I ate up every book I could find…which really didn’t account for very much. That’s why I’m currently working on my memoir about life with comorbid disorders. (I have Tourettes, General Anxiety Disorder, and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder tendencies.) I’m so glad you found my site, and I’d love to chat if you ever want to email me. If your son wants to talk to someone, he can always email me, too, as long as it’s okay with you. Here are a few more great resources on Tourettes if you’re interested:

      4) TSA-USA Chapters: The National Tourette Syndrome Association has local chapters all around the country. If your son is interested in meeting with other people with Tourettes, here’s the place where you can look for the chapter nearest you.
      5) Tourette Syndrome for Teens – KidsHealth.org is one of my favorite sites for information on neurological disorders, and what I love is that they have versions of each page for parents, teens, and younger children. The link I gave you will lead to the page about Tourettes for Teens.
      6) If you sign up for my email list, I send out extra resources every week that focus on the information I sent out in the week’s articles. Since I often write on Tourettes, I send out more focused information on Tourettes on those weeks so it doesn’t seem so overwhelming, focusing on just one aspect of the disorder, rather than all of it at once.

      I love getting to know people, so please don’t hesitate to comment or email. Thanks again for stopping by!

  • Melissa Wood on March 19, 2014 at 10:25 pm said:

    Thank you so much for all the fantastic information Brittany. I will certainly check out the books above that you suggested. I would love for him to have someone to talk to that also has Tourettes. When he is in the right frame of mind (15 year old boys can be a little moody), I will talk with him about your blog and let him know it is here. When the conversation is on ‘his terms’ he can be very open about his Tourettes with us, but other times he just says everything is ‘fine.’ I want him to feel comfortable talking about it without him feeling like we ALWAYS want to talk about it. I signed up for your email list as well. Thanks again. Melissa

    • brittanyfichterwrites@gmail.com on March 22, 2014 at 5:43 am said:

      I completely understand. I didn’t want to even talk about my tics until I was in college, and I didn’t fully accept it as part of who I was until I was a junior. It’s a hard thing to feel like you’re broken (Even though Tourettes doens’t mean broken.), like if the world around you knew who you really are, they’d reject you, and sometimes too much pushing can make it feel like people are trying to “fix” you. He’s very blessed to have a family that supports him and cares enough to learn about it, as well as allow him some space to come to terms with it in his own time. And thank you for signing up! I just sent out a short version of my personal story to my new subscribers, and I’m currently working on a Resource Guide to common disorders that I’ll being emailing out links to the PDF version. Email me anytime you want to chat or just vent. I love getting to know people!

  • Rand Collins on October 20, 2014 at 6:32 pm said:

    Hello Brittany-

    Wonderful to find someone with the same conditions as myself – I also have TS, GAD, and OCD tendencies as well as sleep problems. Lexapro really helps with the GAD. Ambien is a wonder drug.

    I’d love to correspond. I live in Duncan, B.C. I’ve gotten a PhD and MD; lived in the US for many years and managed laboratories. Then returned home to Canada where I cannot practice, struggled for some time, and finally went into Health and Safety. Went north for a year and a half; check this out:

    http://throughavintagelens.com/2012/12/wapasu-nights/

    Love my new career. Off for the summer because things are slow in oil and gas; now at 68m am looking for a job teaching or doing safety in a northern mine for the winter.

    Will follow your blog.

    Rand

    • brittanyfichterwrites@gmail.com on July 29, 2015 at 3:48 am said:

      Dear Rand,

      I apologize sincerely for not responding to your comment sooner. I was scrolling along today and realized I hadn’t written you back. All I can plead is (was) pregnancy brain at the time you posted this. I appreciate your feedback and your readership! How have your travels and new career been doing? Let me know when you have a minute!

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