How to Get Through a Blood Test Without a Meltdown 
by Marcia Hinds – Megan and Ryan’s Mom


When we first started biomedical treatments I wasn’t sure how to do the blood draws that were essential to diagnose the issues with my son’s immune function. If you click on this link from the Autism Research Institute ( you can watch a video with your child that will help prepare them.

In my book, I KNOW YOU’RE IN THERE, I said you never negotiate with terrorists (especially if they happen to be my son and their name is Ryan). But blood tests are the one exception to this rule.

Before the first few blood tests Ryan and I practiced. We role played everything that would happen at the lab. We used our doctor kit, and took turns being Ryan and the technician who took his blood. When it was my turn to take Ryan’s blood, I pinched his arm to show him how the prick of the needle felt and that it really didn’t hurt.

Now here’s where the negotiating with terrorists exception comes in. Before the first few blood tests, I took Ryan to Target and let him pick out one of the cars he loved. That Hot Wheels car sat on our kitchen counter in plain view so he could see it for days. He knew if he sat very still on my lap during the blood draw, the car was his. The bribe also included his favorite Chicken McNuggets lunch at McDonald’s as soon as the test was over.

The sad part is that since we did these tests so often, it wasn’t long before we didn’t need the bribes. Ryan just put out his arm out when he sat in my lap.

Before the medical treatment I had no clue that the reason God made blood tests was to catch any issues that a medication could cause before any real damage was done. Reading about the side effects of medications that were life-changing for Ryan terrified me. But in time I realized if my son was going to have a shot at life, there was some risk involved.

My son is now an aerospace engineer and living a “typical” and happy life, but he is still dependent on some meds like the antivirals, antifungals, and Leucovorin to keep his immune system working properly.

Some kids can get off them when their immune systems start to function better, but as of yet, my son isn’t one of them. Ryan is now 29 and has been on most of these meds in one form or another since he was 4. The best part is the prescriptions continue to help Ryan lead a “normal” life. And in 25 years none these medications ever showed to be problematic on his blood tests.


NOTE FROM MARCIA HINDS – Megan and Ryan’s mom:

Ryan became an aerospace engineer, and what I wanted most for him actually happened.  He is happy and has friends. Ryan’s recovery wasn’t miraculous, but the result of receiving proper medical treatment combined with behavioral, and educational interventions. To preview my book, “I Know You’re In There – winning our war against autism”go to Amazon or my website

Contact info for Marcia:

Phone: 805 497-8202   Email: or
There is more info to help on my website.

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