A bit of background so that maybe you all can help me help her. We met in a hospital-taught childbirth class and after all the babies we born we did a "reunion". I didn't have many mama friends yet (I'm the youngest in my group of friends to have kids) so I would occasionally do playgroups with all the stay at home parents from the class. As they grew I started making friends with more similar views/styles (I was the only one who didn't circ, CIO, wean at 6-9 mos, etc) and started hanging with them less and less. Particularly now that our kids are old enough to be "disciplined" (they're 20-22 mos) our parenting differences are blatant and hard to ignore when we're together (you know... other parents giving time outs, shaming, etc).
But... aside from what I view as child abuse (the biting), I also think her ds might have autism, in some form. Disclaimer: I don't know much about autism, so correct me if I'm wrong, but of the descriptions I've heard, he fits in more than one way. He has no words at almost 2 years, and even though she took signing classes from a young age, he never picked up a single sign. He just claps his hands violently whenever he wants something and is easily and very often frustrated. He never interacts in any way with the other kids, while they're all at least parallel playing and sometimes even "sharing" toys. He just enters a room, finds one thing and focuses entirely on that one thing until he leaves, usually in a tantrum. Every week they come to an open gym type thing with tons of toys and ride toys and every week he goes straight for the play mower and pushes it around, in his own little world, for the entire 1.5 hours. Even the kids seem to know that he's different, as they all pretty much are oblivious to his presence. And he uses his mom's hands sometimes (like grabs her hands and claps them together), which I know I've heard is a sign... In short, something just doesn't seem right (and maybe bad parenting is enough of a cause). Anyways, what I'm wondering is: should I do anything to help this poor kid who if not needing some early intervention for possible autism at least needs to be protected from being biten by his own mother, or should I just totally sever ties. She's never been particularly responsive to suggestions and never really asks for input they way most moms do when they're having a parenting struggle about something. What would you do?