It has been a very long time since I posted in here, MDC and PtGC. My son is 5 and has never been tested or in a school situation, I have no idea what his IQ is, and do not know if he is gifted, or if so, how gifted. I do know everyone who meets him comments on how smart he is, and he was obviously 'ahead' at 2 (when he started doing mental addition and subtraction without counting) or when he was speaking very long, grammatically correct sentences with proper tense, conjunctions, adverbs, etc. He was able to skip (alternating arms) while whistling a proper tune at 3.5. But he's 5 now and not really reading (though he knows most of the rules and sounds and *can* spell CVC and silent E words, as well as things like "limit" and other very phonemic words, he generally chooses not to try to read. I am totally fine with that at 5, and do not in the slightest push. His math skills are around 1st grade, I think, like if he has crackers in his hand (not laid out) he might say "Mommy, what is 2 and 2 and 2 and 2, oh, right, what is 4 and 4, oh, I have 8 crackers". Nothing indicative of major mathematical giftedness, but he hasn't had much exposure nor any form of lesson (he's screen-free, no workbooks, no leap pads, etc). He uses words like "shifts" (instead of 'moves') when appropriate but also speaks casually, too (doesn't fit the asperger's type of speech).
I have been on and off researching various disorders to see if any fit him and cannot find one that does, Here are some of his challenges:
He seems to need to control or at least understand EVERYTHING. He wants me to 'pause' the radio (even when it is my station and a song he doesn't seem to care about) when I make a phone call so he doesn't miss anything. He asks what EVERY song is about, picking out specific lines sometimes (again, my songs, not fun kid songs). He MUST be involved in every conversation going on around him, even boring adult ones that have nothing to do with him. He often reacts when we arrive at playdates or new venues with a grimace on his face, negative words--clear and strong dislike and even mild anger (never rage). It has taken me a long time to figure out, but I think it is about things not being HIS way or under his control--i.e. too many variables. He does not like babies or toddlers (except one precocious one who idolizes my son) and is very vocal about it.
We met some friends at a shallow-entry river 'beach' today and he spent the entire time in the parking lot--refused to get his (water-sandal) shoes 'dirty' on the sand/pebbles. He takes off his shirt if it gets even a tiny drip of, well, anything, even water, but at a meal he will wipe his hands (with food on them) on his hair! LOL. He is neither a neatnic nor overly sloppy, but latches onto a particular concern and does not budge a millimeter for months, then moves on to another.
He still uses his body a lot, like to get my attention, hits (lightly, more as a gesture) when angry, but not so much with other people anymore. His aggression is way more in facial expressions and words now. When he is unhappy (and he gets unhappy more than any kid I know) he makes it known--not through rage, aggression, etc like a toddler, but through incessant whining and loud complaining--especially bad when he is hungry, tired or sick, but pretty constant otherwise--and very exasperating and annoying to anyone around him.
The other kids his age seem so laid back and calm to me compared to my son.
Oh, and he annoys other kids like mad, doesn't really seem to even notice them--just barrels over them or ignores them, but is amazing with an attention-giving adult--plenty of eye contact, back-and-forth conversation, though he still likes to control most of the play.
He does not seem to be at all, what is the word, I would say 'afraid' but that is not right... anyway...of adults. He doesn't seem to even recognize authority (as opposed to simply not 'respecting' authority). He is not intimidated by anyone, any rules, etc. He will walk into a building for the first time, filled with adults, and just start opening doors, going behind counters, just because he wants to. The thing I see in other 5 year olds' faces when they talk to me, I have never seen in his face when he talks to other adults. We are strong and firm, but gentle, parents. Plenty of boundaries and expectations, but not disciplinarian. I really think this is a temperament thing--that will one day help him tear down metaphorical walls of some sort. But it is very hard to parent a kid that does not recognize any form of authority!
He has an incredible attention span if something is his idea and he is interested, but also needs to move A LOT. He speaks all day long, rather loudly most of the time, and wants everyone to hear him. He wants me to tell him stories anywhere, anytime, all day long!
And every once in a while he is this calm, quiet, patient, thoughtful child that is sooo easy going--then it's gone again!
I read Misdiagnosis and Dual-Diagnosis... and he did not fit the disorder diagnoses, in my mind, though I think he has some mild anxiety. I convince myself he's just a really intense, probably moderately gifted kid who likes to be in control and someday those qualities will be amazing. But he has a rough day, or week, and I start trying to diagnose again.
Can anyone offer me any thoughts?