However, she has little energy, she insists she is still sleepy after 12 hours of sleep and will sob until you put her back to bed. She hates changing out of her pajamas, if you just let her hang in her bed she will literally stay there contentedly for hours. she will not or cannot follow any direction that she did not already want to do. So if her toy falls and you ask her to pick it up she will not unless she wants to pick it up even if she desperately wants it (usually this means in her mind it it's someone else's job to pick it up) it will end in sad tears. That said she almost never has a tantrum unless it it's about changing out of her pajamas or because she wants to go to bed.
They started potty training and have found that she can tell you pretty reliably when she needs to go but hates the potty, wants to stands up and if the stars haven't all assigned for her to want to go she can hold it for at least 6 hours (while being adequately hydrated no less). If during this time she asks for a diaper, you can say yes, let's go but unless you lead her to the changing table it will never occur to her to lead you there or get a diaper.
There is a small handful of people she enjoys being with but she HATES big groups. If you have the misfortune of meeting her with a big group she will forever dislike you. They have really struggled with family events and the like because of this, it is well past the point of being shy.
Lastly, she is really small, doesn't eat much but most alarming will pretty much never ask for food or drink. Her mom said it has been less than five times that she has ever asked for something. It isn't a house where they are always eating, breakfast and lunch are at the same time daily and dinner fluctuates a little but the only snack is if dinner is going to be late.
It truly seems like this little girl is depressed at times but she does snap out of it and became cheerful and animated sometimes too. The pediatrician seems to think things are fine but I think describing it can sometimes just come off as "easy kid, lucky parents." Any suggestions on what the next steps should be or what other things they should watch for or look into?
I was wondering about deficiencies. I have to take an iron supplement, and she is acting how I feel when I don't take it - exhausted and grumpy.
but everything has pros and cons
These were my thoughts as well. The not being hungry or thirsty might be related, but some of the things you described sound a bit like Sensory Processing Disorder.
It doesn't sound like a developmental delay, it sounds more like low muscle tone, sensory issues and nutrient deficiencies (which can contribute to sensory issues). My DS2 has a low appetite and tires easily, but he's been doing better since I started him on a liquid multivitamin + lemon-flavored cod liver oil. The problem with low energy is that it's a vicious cycle - low activity means less muscle tone, less appetite and even less desire for exercise in the long run, and less exercise means heightened sensory issues. I give my DS2 a period of vigorous activity followed by a period of rest (I steer him toward books or Legos, but I also allow TV), a nutrient-dense snack, then more activity. He eats more and exercises more with this type of cycle. I know of 2 books that could be very helpful to your friend - "The Out of Sync Child Has Fun" by Carol Kranowitz and "The Challenging Child" by Stanley Greenspan. Dr. Greenspan points out that the low energy kids are actually the most difficult personality type because it takes so much more effort to get them engaged, and they remain engaged for shorter periods of time than typical kids.
She needs to get some labs done to make sure that there isn't something else going on.....diabetes or leukemia or anemia would be my main concern. Most of the other things sound like my dd at 3 years old, just very stubborn.
Melanie- Mama to my super hero daughter bravely battling brain cancer. www.fightformaddie.com and expecting 1/13!!!!