Is my child highly sensitive, or is it something more? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 04-28-2008, 07:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi everyone,
I've just had what feels like my millionth frustrating moment due to my 4 yo DD's behaviour. When she was 2, I bought and read the "The Highly Sensitive Child" book and decided to honor her sensitivity. But how would I know if there was more to her that that? I thought by now things like social interaction with other children and adults would begin to smooth out.

A little about her behaviour that has me coming to ask for advice: She just finally stopped having fits at restaurants when they come out and sing the Happy Birthday song to patrons. She runs screaming when any child has a noisy or motorized toy (even at familiar houses and familiar friends). She tells my DH and I to stop laughing all the time. (We aren't laughing at her, just laughing in happy conversation.) She is very afraid of animals, especially dogs, no matter what size. She has a very big problem with people in her space, such as at Inflateable Wonderland or the playground. I stopped taking her to playgroups because she would only sit on my lap and not play with the other children. She said they were too noisy. Any activity where there are other children often ends in tears. And I hate to admit it, but I'm left embarrassed and having to explain that she is extremely sensitive and trying to diffuse other's bad feelings left from my DD's behavior.

I appreciate very much any insight that anyone has to offer, including links, etc.
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#2 of 3 Old 04-28-2008, 09:56 PM
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I'm sorry you are having such a rough time. I would look into sensory issues. It sounds like she may have issues with sounds.

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#3 of 3 Old 04-28-2008, 10:37 PM
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What strikes me is that in all of those situations she's got to be feeling really uncomfortable and bad. It sounds like whatever this is it is getting in the way of her doing some things she may want to do. I don't see what is gained from calling this "highly sensitive" instead of getting it treated. If you want to get treatment I'd start with taking her to the pediatrician to ask about two things - an occupational therapy evaluation for sensory integration dysfunction. And, possibly now or in the future going to see a psychologist to talk about anxiety or possibly Asperger's if that seems like it might fit. This is a really helpful book.

And, this:
Even if you think it is primarily sensory I encourage you to read this book because it is really easy for parents to unintentionally reinforce anxiety by avoiding experiences.
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