I have one nephew who wanders. My sisters house is locked up, big time, because of this. He will literally leave the house for no apparent reason (well, he has one, we just do not know it)
My other nephew who is autistic does not wander - but he does run. He will take off almost in a "chase me" type game. He does not have a sense of danger when he does this - he once took off at a subway station….Overall, though, he is less scary than his older brother - at least you know when he has taken off.
Both kids require a ratio of 1:1 in public.
Transition times are the worst - and it can be quite bad when other adults are around, or acting as caregivers. The reason it is bad when other adults are around is :
1. People assume someone else is watching the child
2. Caregivers do not understand that they really have to watch the child. The subway incident was largely my fault. No flames, anyone, I tell this story so people can understand that caregivers, even those who love the child and are reasonably knowledgable about autism, do not always "get it". I was at the subway with a bunch of family members, including my autistic nephews. I had been charged with holding the hand of "the runner". I thought I could let it go for a second while I put my ticket through the turnstyle, thought my sister was being over-protective (sorry, sis, and how I have learned…….) and he bolted under the turnstyle. My husband literally dodged under a turnstyle and caught him.
2. more people=more chaos.
Edited by kathymuggle - 1/2/13 at 8:41am