Having trouble accepting my difficult child - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 27 Old 09-18-2009, 05:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have an extremely emotional and sensitive 4 y/o ds. I am having a hard time with him and his personality. I also feel horribly guilty for not wanting to accept who he is. He has never behaved like a "normal" child or baby. When he was an infant, I wondered why he didn't do basic baby things, like babble happily, reach out his arms to me when he wanted to be picked up, squirm around while sitting on my lap, or play with toys or other things around him. I guess it's hard to explain, but when I see a normal baby, engaged with the world around him, taking everything in while sucking happily on a toy, ds was never like that. He demanded to be held constantly and would stare at people like he was trying to figure them out. He didn't do cute things like suck on his toes and shake rattles. He had zero interest in toys until he was around 2. He just seemed to want to nurse and get into things he wasn't allowed to have. When he learned to walk, at around 15 months (He's hit all of his milestones on the late side), I would try to take him on walks around the neighborhood but it was extremely difficult. He refused to walk on the sidewalk-all he wanted to do was go into people's front yards and try to get into their back yards. Besides that, he just wanted to sit in a disgusting gravel pile and play with the rocks. I've just been getting so upset over these little things lately. When I see a family walking down the street with a toddler who stays on the sidewalk and doesn't scream in indignation when she can't dig through rocks, I feel sad.
Also, ds has always been terrified of other children. He eyes them warily. It doesn't matter how old they are. If we are at the playground and an 18 month old is toddling along on the jungle gym, ds flees towards me. DS seems to be unteachable. It is useless for me or DH to try and show him how to do anything, because he screams and says he can't do it. It could be something ridiculously easy like pulling up his underwear, or drawing a letter. That's his typical reaction when we ask him to do something he either doesn't want to do, or doesn't think he can do: He screams his head off in rage. He is also extraordinarily bossy. He screams in rage whenever I sing (he hates when I even hum a little tune), he physically pushes DH and me apart whenever we touch each other (he is getting better about this, since he is punished now when he does it) and has an absolute meltdown if we don't let him open the door whenever we go somewhere. Thing like this make me so furious, because I feel controlled by my child. DS was constantly sick for the first 3 years of his life. Nothing that he was hospitalized for, but many colds that lasted a month at a time, bronchitis, and ear infections. We learned that he is sensitive to 26 different foods, and his health drastically improved when we changed his diet. I recently tried the GAPS diet, to heal his digestive tract, but it proved too difficult since he is so terribly stubborn and refuses to even CONSIDER tasting a vegetable of any kind. Also, I am afraid that our neighbors think that we are abusing ds. If we are playing outside, catch, for instance, and ds gets a tiny bit hurt, like the ball hurts his finger, he will scream at the top of his lungs that I (or dh) hurt him, and why did we throw the ball so hard, why did we hurt him, etc. My nail accidentally brushed against him when I was dressing him (he refuses to even try to dress himself) and he started shrieking that I hurt him, and why did I scratch him. The thing that bothers me the most is his absolute refusal to have anything to do with other children. The only interaction he has ever had with another child is when a boy came up to him one day and asked him what he was playing with. DS responded "A truck." I was absolutely elated. Other than that, if we are at the park, he has to find a deserted place to play, and if another child comes along, he panics and grabs my hand, forcefully yanking me and begging that we go to another spot. I am sorry to say that I am resorting to bribery and punishments. I recently bribed him to sit with the other kids during story time instead of sitting on my lap, and now I make him sit with the other kids every time. He's only a couple inches in front of me, on the mat, but that's STILL too much for him. During story time, he just sits there stone-faced and refuses to take part in any of it. DS is going to start school next year, and I just assume that I will have a very frustrated teacher informing me that my son needs intensive therapy and is not welcome back at school until he is really ready. I mean, he's probably just going to sit there in terror, and scream whenever he is asked to do anything.
I was recently diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome. I am a total social loser and I don't have any friends. I don't want my ds to be like me. I've taken him to see a psychiatrist, and she didn't think ds showed signs of Asperger's. She is not an expert on autism, but she said he is still too young to know whether his problems with other kids are due to a disorder or just the fact that he is developing more slowly socially. I am aware that this is a dark and depressing rant, but please know that it comes from a place of great frustration. I know that I eventually have to accept him for who he is and stop wishing that he would be different, but my own issues are getting in the way. I had so hope to have a "normal" child, since I'm such an eccentric oddball. It's not that ds doesn't have wonderful traits, too. He can be quite delightful and is very affectionate. He has a memory like a steel trap and is intelligent. Anyway, since I don't have any friends, I hope to find some commiseration and advice from some moms on here. Does anyone have a kid like this, or do any of you have a kid that you sometimes have a hard time accepting? Also, does my kid seem typical enough, and am I just overreacting?

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#2 of 27 Old 09-18-2009, 06:10 PM
 
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I do know what you mean about being depressed seeing happy babies. Ds wasn't exactly unhappy but he was very high needs, wanting to be held constantly as an infant, only sleeping while being held, nursing constantly, etc. Retrospectively, I think a fair bit of it was sensory issues with him. He was very sensitive to sound and I think he used nursing and physical contact to help block that out while he was sleeping. He had a crazy sensitive startle reflex and, again, used physical contact to deal with that. He'd even startle while sleeping and nursing when I ever so quietly turned the page of the book I was reading. He didn't like me humming or singing, either.

Age 4 was the absolute worst. That was when he got really opinionated about everything, extra picky about food, etc. He didn't dress himself at that age, either.

I didn't really realize how sensitive he was until he was about 3. Someone on here posted this site about highly sensitive people. There is a little quiz you can take to see where your ds is on their scale. www.hsperson.com

I think my ds got a 13, the low end of highly sensitive. Some people find therapy helpful. We didn't go that route but things are much much better now with him being more mature and not needing as much sleep. He always did much better when he wasn't tired or hungry. Really, I think he just needed to be babied a few more years.

There is a lot of crossover with these parenting books that use terms like "highly sensitive" and "spirited". And there are a lot of similarities between gifted kids and kids with other special needs. Not knowing your child, I couldn't even hazard a guess. I just did a lot of reading and took what fit.

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#3 of 27 Old 09-18-2009, 06:44 PM
 
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Whew mama, that's a lot on your plate. Listen, when ds1 was a toddler, I let him roam into someone's front yard for a tiny bit of time to look around during our neighborhood walks. And it's funny, one neighbor had a huge gravel driveway that ds loooved. I just let him sit there and play and we became friendly with those neighbors. They didn't mind and of course if they did we wouldn't be hanging around there. We lived in an apt. so I figured of course ds1 would be curious and even though I didn't always feel completely comfortable walking into that gravel area, we never stayed for long. I think that's pretty typical, the curiosity.

My ds1 is pretty sensitive too, sounds like yours is as well. Loud noises, big groups, some foods, clothing, etc. He does do well at a playschool, it's small group. We stopped doing storytime and other group classes b/c he wouldn't sit still so I don't have advice there. Our preschool director said kids are usually, by this time, playing and initiating play with other kids but my ds just sort of started doing it now at 4, but she was emphasizing not to worry...

The world is a loud place and it's hard for sensitive people. I wish you so much luck! Mary

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#4 of 27 Old 09-18-2009, 07:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much for the reassuring replies I'm sure that ds has some sensory issues. When he was an infant, I couldn't bring him among large groups of people because he would become inconsolable until we left. I tried to take him to a Christmas party when he was 5 months old, and I ended up sitting in the back room with him the entire time because he couldn't tolerate being around the other people. I am already so socially isolated that that was difficult for me-when I DID get up the nerve to socialize, my kid would scream and insist that we leave
maryeb, I think that's cool that you let your ds wander into other's yards and met people that way. My problem is my Asperger's: I have very little understanding of what is socially acceptable in certain situations. I just prefer to avoid it altogether, since I had images of angry homeowners and barking dogs chasing us down the street.
The whole situation is becoming so hard on me because I SAH, and ds is so incredible attached to me. I am getting so angry and frustrated with his difficult behavior, and I don't have any outlet for any of my problems with him. I've spent the past month fervently wishing that I had forced him into school this year so that I wouldn't have to deal with him during the day He can really be quite fun, but he's also extremely active, very sensitive, very loud, and very demanding.

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#5 of 27 Old 09-18-2009, 07:40 PM
 
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He sounds like he might be on the spectrum as well. Aspergers came to mind as I was reading your post.
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#6 of 27 Old 09-18-2009, 09:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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He sounds like he might be on the spectrum as well. Aspergers came to mind as I was reading your post.
I was convinced that he was on the spectrum, but when I took him to see a psychiatrist, she didn't think ds had enough symptoms, and suggested that he may have sensory issues and that he likely falls into the category of "difficult." The main aspie symptom he has is his refusal to engage with other kids. Although, other aspie kids will engage with other children, they just have strange social habits. I was social and had friends when I was little, but I was in daycare so I had to be. I think I'm just getting tired of seeing if he "grows out of it." He just gets FURIOUS if I even suggest that he talk to another child.

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#7 of 27 Old 09-18-2009, 11:28 PM
 
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I'm sorry mama I don't have much else to say except offering a hug. It's hard for me to navigate the social arena with kids in tow and I'm an extrovert. So I sympathize. I also think lots of people would looove to let someone else take care of their kid during the day so they can catch their breath so take care of yourself, you're not alone in that thought. Mary

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#8 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 01:08 AM
 
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I"m sorry you're feeling so frustrated right now. It does sound very difficult.

I wonder if you can get him evaluated elsewhere-- the development department at the children's hospital, for instance. It sounds to me like your son needs some help overcoming or dealing with some issues, and I think you would also gain insight and tools for helping your son. I know it's hard, but it seems like you need to take some action on your son's behalf.

Best of luck.
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#9 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 01:18 AM
 
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What you said about him being brushed lightly and screaming in pain reminded me of a book I just read called The Out-of-Sync Child. It's about the different varieties of sensory integration/processing disorder and one of the types involves a hyper-sensitivity to stimulus, so that even soft, soothing touches are sometimes interpreted as pain or a threat. One of the other things the authors talked about was how plastic children's brains are while they're young and how an evaluation and occupational therapy can actually help rewire the brain so some of the neurological symptoms are drastically reduced and a child can start to enjoy life a lot more. I'm not a doctor or a therapist, and obviously wouldn't try to make a diagnosis (especially over the internet!), but it sounds like maybe that book would be a good resource just to see if it strikes you as something that could be going on with your kiddo.
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#10 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 11:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I"m sorry you're feeling so frustrated right now. It does sound very difficult.

I wonder if you can get him evaluated elsewhere-- the development department at the children's hospital, for instance. It sounds to me like your son needs some help overcoming or dealing with some issues, and I think you would also gain insight and tools for helping your son. I know it's hard, but it seems like you need to take some action on your son's behalf.

Best of luck.
I had planned on getting him the full-day psych evaluation to check for Asperger's, but ended up deciding against it b/c of the psychologist's reaction. I'm not entirely sure she is that familiar with Asperger's, though. She said that ds makes eye contact fine, and thought that he acted like a pretty normal, if shy, kid. But Aspie kids often ARE fine around adults. He is not full-blown autistic, and I did read that Asperger's often goes totally undetected until kids start school because they have normal realationships with adults. Also, my dh is not supportive on the Aspie thing (with both me and ds). He thinks that it's fine that ds is unusual and we shouldn't try to change him. He also thinks all kids are difficult and obnoxious and that's why he's very reluctant to have another one.
I keep going back and forth deciding if ds has a diagnosable problem. He does't talk about one subject endlessly or have an obsession with any type of interest or object. He doesn't complain about his clothes being uncomfortable, and he doesn't have strange mannerisms, like flapping his hands or spinning. He doesn't have any obsessive routines. He plays with his toys in a variety of ways, makes them talk for each other, and shows plenty of imagination with them. He does typical kid things, like pretending to be a kitty and crawling around the house.
He does other things that cause me to wonder about, though. Is it normal for a four year old to be extremely selfish? I could make a large amount of food for us to share, and ds will get extremely whiny and upset if I don't give him ALL the food. He will even come up to my plate and try to take my food away, even though he has plenty on his. He can be so terribly rude about this-ripping a cup of water away from me or dh, even though the cup is very full. He gets quite anxious and asks "Is there any left in there?" He is extremely particular about his toys. He's gotten much better about this, but when he was younger, he would have a screaming fit if dh or I were walking by one of his toys and stepped on it, or merely touched it. He's very sensitive about his toys and thinks that they get "hurt." DS also refuses to ever say "sorry." He has never apologized for anything. He will, however, have his toys apologize to each other. I don't have any other experience with kids, so I don't know if these are typical behaviors. Since I go back and forth between thinking ds is a typical, if difficult kid, to thinking he has a real problem, I never know what to do. I'm getting more and more annoyed with him and sometimes feel that he's just being awful on purpose, since he sometimes seems normal enough, and some things just don't make sense. Like, why does he shriek at us that we hurt him when we barely touch him, but when he falls and bloodies his knee, he just wipes it off and says "I'm ok."?? Examples like that make me feel that he is just being difficult on purpose somehow. His anger and frustration is always directed at me and dh for ridiculous things.
earthmama369, thanks for the book rec, that's one I haven't heard of!
Sheesh I sure have a lot to say! I really, really appreciate that you mamas have read this stuff and responded. It is so kind

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#11 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 11:54 AM
 
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Yes to the being hurt at a touch and "i'm ok!" with more serious tumbles. I think some is ds wants to assess his injury and not have people hovering or, God forbid, touching the injury (like cleaning or putting on a bandaid). But it could also be the "Out of Sync " stuff of gentle touches being more bothersome than hard ones.

Another book I liked was Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnosis of Gifted Children and Adults. So many of my ds's difficult attributes correspond with typical characteristics of gifted kids. Sometimes being gifted masks other issues and sometimes they get labeled as something else when it is being gifted that is the root issue. Some gifted kids are very asynchronous, for instance emotionally or socially behind same age peers and advanced academically. Or some other mix of advanced and delayed. What I like about the book is that it describes all of the typical child diagnoses and what the indicators are for them. Then it goes on to list the contraindications, what things mean a child doesn't have Aspergers, ADHD, Bipolar, etc even if they superficially seem to.

http://www.amazon.com/Misdiagnosis-D.../dp/0910707677

The thing with kids behavior is it isn't WHAT they do, it's WHY they do it that is important. And that is darn tricky to figure out at times.

If you think the gifted label fits even remotely you might want to find a therapist who is more specialized/experienced with gifted kids. I don't have any personal experience with therapy but I've heard people say that that has made a big difference.

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#12 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 01:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oooh, thanks for the other book suggestion. I am going to investigate that title on Amazon. I'm just a little wary of the "gifted" label. I would love it if ds proved to have intellectual gifts, but I am so egalitarian that I shy away from wanting to categorize some kids as more intelligent than others (I feel it's a way of saying one kid is "better" than the other.) I know that's not really true. I have a high IQ and I certainly do not feel any better than anyone else. My mother was anti the whole gifted label thing and refused to put me in the advanced class, and I guess that way of thinking really stuck with me. Your suggestion is one I hadn't considered, thank you for mentioning it and I will look into it!

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#13 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 01:50 PM
 
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Sorry to throw another book at you, but a psychologist friend loaned me 'Nurture by Nature' - it's the Myers Brigs personality typing used for kids, so you can understand why they are the the way they are, then it gives ideas around parenting your specific type of child. I found it helpful.
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#14 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 02:06 PM
 
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(I feel it's a way of saying one kid is "better" than the other.) I know that's not really true.
It's more like a different kind of special need with its own set of difficulties... It's not that I've ever had my ds tested and it really doesn't come up since we are unschooling. But all the difficult characteristics just explain my ds so well.

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#15 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 10:04 PM
 
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She said that ds makes eye contact fine, and thought that he acted like a pretty normal, if shy, kid. But Aspie kids often ARE fine around adults.
Ugh... you can't diagnose Asperger's based on eye contact alone. It's much more complex than that! Only someone who's well versed in the area can tell.

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Also, my dh is not supportive on the Aspie thing (with both me and ds). He thinks that it's fine that ds is unusual and we shouldn't try to change him. He also thinks all kids are difficult and obnoxious and that's why he's very reluctant to have another one.
Diagnosis isn't about changing your son - it can be about finding out about how he works and thinks so you can best parent him.

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I'm getting more and more annoyed with him and sometimes feel that he's just being awful on purpose, since he sometimes seems normal enough, and some things just don't make sense.
This for me, would push me for diagnosis. He may just be a highly sensitive, perfectionist child. He may be on the autism spectrum (it's a spectrum for a reason - there's a wide variety).

You clearly need help in parenting him. It's not admitting defeat to reach out for help. He IS a difficult child from what you've written. Knowing what's going with him may help YOU more than him.

Adding another book to your ever-growing reading list:
The Challenging Child by Stanley Greenspan. I love this book because it focuses on connection. I'd start with the chapter on the Highly Sensitive Child.

Getting back to assessment. My criteria for assessment is when the child's behavior is "keeping me up at night". We had ds assessed for sensory issues, and I'm glad that we did. The occupational therapist caught things that I'd never notice (vestibular insecurity and motor planning issues), but once she pointed them out, it made all sorts of sense. The work the OT did really helped us understand how ds works and it helped ds be more comfortable in his own body.

We're currently having ds assessed again for some other issues (mainly anxiety and weird hand movements/eye rolling). My suspicion is either Aspergers (unlikely, given how he plays with other kids, but you never know), or Tourette Syndrome. Again, it's not that I want to change who my son is, but I can't parent him the way he needs to be parented without more info. For example, what should I do when he starts to twist his hair so that it falls out? How to stop that so that he doesn't go bald and feel bad?

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#16 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 11:34 PM
 
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Here's the Misdiagnosis book with preview on google books:
http://books.google.com/books?id=lWl...gifted&f=false

I also like When The Labels Don't Fit:
http://books.google.com/books?id=kPt...age&q=&f=false

The Eides book (The Mislabeled Child) is good as well, and here's their blog:
http://eideneurolearningblog.blogspot.com/

Unfortunately, all of the titles look negative and labely, but when you start digging around to try to find the mix that is your kid, a differential diagnosis or clearer understanding may emerge. I have a "difficult" or "complicated" kid who almost meets the criteria for a number of things. It's hard to navigate the system (whether EI, school or social domains) when there's no simple, pre-packaged diagnosis.

Another interesting avenue is Executive Functioning:

http://books.google.com/books?id=DmU...nction&f=false

http://books.google.com/books?id=J5M...age&q=&f=false

http://books.google.com/books?id=Xo-...q=adam+cox&lr=

http://books.google.com/books?id=pXf...unprepared&lr=

And of course, sensory processing disorder (SPD or SID):
http://books.google.com/books?lr=&q=...ssing+disorder

I have read all of the above (ok, not all of the SPD books, but probably 10 of them ), and they're so informative. I'm an info junkie, but I've found I've needed to be well versed in emerging science/theories/ideas as I advocate for my son and try to navigate us through the system and life in general.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#17 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 11:36 PM
 
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Ugh... you can't diagnose Asperger's based on eye contact alone. It's much more complex than that! Only someone who's well versed in the area can tell.



Diagnosis isn't about changing your son - it can be about finding out about how he works and thinks so you can best parent him.



This for me, would push me for diagnosis. He may just be a highly sensitive, perfectionist child. He may be on the autism spectrum (it's a spectrum for a reason - there's a wide variety).

You clearly need help in parenting him. It's not admitting defeat to reach out for help. He IS a difficult child from what you've written. Knowing what's going with him may help YOU more than him.

Adding another book to your ever-growing reading list:
The Challenging Child by Stanley Greenspan. I love this book because it focuses on connection. I'd start with the chapter on the Highly Sensitive Child.

Getting back to assessment. My criteria for assessment is when the child's behavior is "keeping me up at night". We had ds assessed for sensory issues, and I'm glad that we did. The occupational therapist caught things that I'd never notice (vestibular insecurity and motor planning issues), but once she pointed them out, it made all sorts of sense. The work the OT did really helped us understand how ds works and it helped ds be more comfortable in his own body.

We're currently having ds assessed again for some other issues (mainly anxiety and weird hand movements/eye rolling). My suspicion is either Aspergers (unlikely, given how he plays with other kids, but you never know), or Tourette Syndrome. Again, it's not that I want to change who my son is, but I can't parent him the way he needs to be parented without more info. For example, what should I do when he starts to twist his hair so that it falls out? How to stop that so that he doesn't go bald and feel bad?
I totally agree. DS is complicated and the world misunderstands him. I'm translating for him/others while he learns more adaptive skills.

The other thing to consider, and something I didn't realize until last year sometime (at about 6), is that his age mates were accelerating past him at quite a rate - faster than in preschool, and preschool age is a time of greater acceptance of quirkiness.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#18 of 27 Old 09-19-2009, 11:56 PM
 
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#19 of 27 Old 09-20-2009, 12:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, so much to comment on and sooo many awesome books to look into!!
Cascadian, I'd love to check out the Meyer's Briggs book. I recall testing myself when I was younger, and again more recently, and I am amazed at how accurate that test is.
LynnS6, I agree completely with what you said about a diagnosis helping my son and not trying to change him. I have explained that to dh. When I started bringing up my concerns about ds and wanting to take him in for evaluation, dh got irritated because he thought the doctor would try to push some sort of medication on ds. He is afraid that we will be stigmatizing ds and making him feel as if there is something wrong with him. There is a parent/child therapy group that I'm thinking of attending. It's for parents with difficult kids, but I'm not so sure about it. All of the kids are put in a room together, and most of the kids are there because they were kicked out of preschool for hitting and/or other disruptive behavior. I spoke to another mother who did this group but took her son out of because of the behavior of the other kids. DS is extremely sensitve and would be terribly upset if another child were to be rough with him, so I may decide not to do this group. I suppose I should just push for him to get the full evaluation? The psychiatrist made me feel as though it wouldn't be worth it b/c ds is still so young and not showing enough of the textbook symptoms.
joensally, I will be up late tonight checking out all those book links! Thank you!

Me bfinfant.gifDP caffix.gif one silly 5 year old  boy blahblah.gif and a brand new babyboy.gifcd.gif  signcirc1.gifgoorganic.jpg
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#20 of 27 Old 09-20-2009, 12:30 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I LOVE my local library! They had almost all of the books that have been suggested.
I've read several books pertaining to the "Highly Sensitive" label, and that has not really fit ds. Time to check into other avenues of explanation, such as SPD, which sounds pretty likely.
I'm so thankful for all the advice. I often think, "Well, is there actually anything wrong with my son, or is it just me? Maybe he just needs to grow up some more and then he'll function better." But when I look back at all of the various things I've found odd about him, it seems pretty unlikely that he'll just grow out of it.

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#21 of 27 Old 09-20-2009, 12:33 AM
 
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Both of my kids are on the spectrum. The oldest can be described as very difficult. My suggestion would be to look for a proper diagnosis and approach it accordingly. Our lives have improved by knowing how to deal with autism and what works. Also my son has just started social skills training to help him learn how to navigate social situations.

I also think it might be a good idea to seek out some other adult Aspies so you can talk to someone about your own difficulties.

Misty, mama to my nurslings William(11/4/02) and Parker(7/13/04).
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#22 of 27 Old 10-02-2009, 02:38 AM
 
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My son has a strange obsession about food too. He is always asking for food, even if he just ate. Whatever is on his plate or whatever he perceives to be his, he is very possessive of. He will share it (if he doesn't want it) but it has to be his idea. If someone takes it, it's not fun.

Here's another example: we went to a ball game and got a footlong subway sandwich for my son and his cousin to split. My son flew off the handle, because the sandwich was cut in to two parts. He kept saying "glue it back together, glue it back together!" , in between sobbing hysterically. I think what set him off was that even though it was divided in two parts it only had one wrapping around both parts, so he perceived the whole package to be his, and when it was unwrapped, and then on top of that cut! oh the horrors,right? I t's actually not that he could eat that much in one sitting, or that he even wanted that much, I don't think. Anyway he had a complete melt down. I was horrified. I had to take him outside and he layed down on the dirty floor crying about his sandwich, and crying in baby talk. This kid has an awesome vocab but when upset is reduced to practically babbling. Finally he decided to wrap the half of it up in the wrapping, then unwrap it?!!? Apparently that was enough for him to trick his mind into thinking he was getting "one whole sandwich" , individually wrapped.

I know, it's very strange. I guess my point is that I can comisserate with you. I am having a really tough time parenting my son too.

Now that he has started kindergarten we are seeing all kinds of behaviors in the classroom- sitting in corner alone, flicking lights on/off, water on, running out of the class, shouting etc. and he is being assessed for Asperger's and SPD. I would strongly suggest going ahead with your plan to get him evaluated further. If he does end up with a diagnosis, maybe you can move forward with a plan on how to best deal with his behavior. That's my hope anyway for my son.

Hang in there, and I'll try to do the same LOL.

Mama to my spirited J, and L, my homebirth: baby especially DTaP, MMR (family vax injuries)
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#23 of 27 Old 10-02-2009, 04:16 AM
 
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MommaMoo hugs to you!! Mothering can be so challenging for all of us and you certainly are being challenged more than most! I do not have a child with these issues but I have four close friends who all have a child with autism or asperger's. Two were diagnosed early and had intensive therapy which really helped. Also they were able to connect with other parents dealing with similar issues and one organization also had automatic counseling for the parents because of the stress marriages are often under in these circumstances. I do recommend you see a doctor who is an expert and the full-day evaluation sounds like a wise move. As a parent your gut-instinct is your guide. Don't rest until your questions are answered to your satisfaction.
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#24 of 27 Old 10-02-2009, 12:15 PM
 
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I have a spectrum child too who has always been a bit "different". When playing outside with the neighborhood kids, he would rather pull leaves off the bushes, play with rocks, or mulch at the playground. He does not like crowds, places with too much activity (although that has gotten easier for him to tolerate as he has gotten older), and certain textures/feelings. Like your son, he was "later" walking (16 months), VERY attached to mama, wary of other kids, would throw fits if things did not go his way (still has some issues with that, but again, getting better with age and maturity), very perfectionistic (as in, don't want to try it unless I can do it perfect) so took longer to learn to do things, particular about how his toys are arranged too (little sister better leave his stuff alone!), and not conversational. For us, we skipped the professional evaluation and went with the public school (he qualified for special needs preschool and now is in first grade mainstreamed, with some pullout for reading and writing where he is a bit behind, and also pursued private speech and occupational therapy evaluations. He gets speech at school, and OT through a private clinic. OT has done wonders for him as far as helping him adapt to his sensory issues, and gross and fine motor skills. Some of the things like doing buttons, writing, etc., he would get angry if Mom tried to help, but with the OT, he cooperates and has learned a LOT! 3-4 was a tough age in a lot of ways for him too...potty training (ugh!), throwing fits, leaving the room or running off with little notice, picky eating, having to have things just so or else, plus me trying to divide my attention between his needs and a baby sister.

So, for us, getting help through the school system, private OT and gymnastics once a week, and just general growing and maturity has made life a LOT easier in the past year or two. I saw a HUGE leap in growth/maturity at around age 5 for him. He actually talks with me now, can function well in school (and enjoys it!), will sometimes even approach other kids rather than ignore them, is more tolerant of things that used to really bother him, and is a lot of fun to be around and do things with. So there IS hope!

Jill stillheart.gif Chris (7/96), mommy to 3 sweet redheads: jumpers.gif Matthew autismribbon.gif (12/02), Michelle (8/05) and Marissa (1/10). Nursing since 2002.
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#25 of 27 Old 10-02-2009, 01:36 PM
 
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s mama lots of them !

namaste.gif Practicing medicine Mama to four beautiful children 
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#26 of 27 Old 10-02-2009, 02:04 PM
 
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I've totally been there. DS is 'normal' enough that a lot of things could be passed off as quirks but when enough of them add up, it gets overwhelming. DS was diagnosed by a developmental paediatrician when he was 5. This was after other people who saw him thought that he couldn't be on the autism spectrum because he made good eye contact and interacted well with them. We have never even had the idea of drugs mentioned to us. The main thing that the diagnosis did was open up more services and resources for us.

Gillian - Wife to an amazing DH, Mother to 4 wonderful kiddos . . . and now another on the way.
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#27 of 27 Old 10-02-2009, 03:24 PM
 
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Mama, I don't have anything to offer about diagnosis, etc., but I just wanted to offer a hug.

My son is sensitive & my IRL friends got together & tried to convince me he was autistic after he wouldn't look one of them in the eye when she spoke to him. (She is a spanking/yelling parent, and she terrified him when he was two, so naturally he must be autistic, right?) It's hard when you feel like people are judging your child.

Take good care of yourself. You sound like a great attached mom.

Mama to A 8/05 and S 11/06
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