Another new person :)

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Persephone, May 29, 2011.

  1. Persephone

    Persephone New Member

    Hello everyone! :)

    After reaching new levels of frustration this afternoon I went on google looking for support groups as living in a small town means that local support groups are nonexistent, and I found this site. It is nice to know that even though I may feel alone, I really am not. To start off, my name is Stephanie. I am 33 almost 34 years old and have been married to a wonderful man for almost 11 years years. I am a stay at home mom to 2 usually great boys who are 10 and 3 years old. I am also a full time college student.
    My oldest son is our special needs child. He did not speak until he was 5 years old, his previous doctors were more concerned about his lack of immunizations than the fact that he was not speaking. After several changes in doctors, we moved to a new town and found a doctor that was actually willing to listen to us and make the necessary referrals to get our son into speech therapy. Shortly after he started speech, we noticed other behavior issues and took him to get an evaluation done. After a month and a half of testing he was given the diagnosis of Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified and ODD. We were told that basically our son fit somewhere on the autism spectrum but they were not entirely sure where as he does not fit any real descriptors. My husband and I think he has Aspergers as a lot of his issues are related to social skills. My son also ADHD type behaviors and some obsessive tendencies when it comes to things he likes to talk about or think about. There is also no disagreement with the ODD diagnosis as he is defiant with almost everything we tell him as parents.
    I am pretty much at the end of my rope. There is nothing really "typical" about our son, and what seems to work in the books, does not work for him. We have tried time-outs and he will sit in his chair and for the entire duration of his time out will yell (I do not think he even has a normal volume setting)"moooomy! mooooommmmy!". After hearing that nonstop for even 2 minutes it starts to get on my nerves, after his whole 10 minutes have passed I am about ready to tear out my hair. We have tried totally removing him and putting him into a quiet room. He will either open his door and come out every 30 seconds or less, or he will pound on the door like he has been locked in and will yell for either myself or his dad. When talking to him about what he did that we did not like he will smile at us, smirk, or look like he is trying to not laugh. He also thinks it is quite funny when his younger brother gets in trouble and will purposefully try to get him into trouble as well. He will smile or straight out laugh about it. A perfect example would be earlier today I caught my youngest throwing large rocks at our front door. He got his warning and eventually was put into time-out. My oldest thought this was amusing. When the 3yr old's time-out was over he went back outside. I stood next to the window out of their sight to see and hear what was going on and I saw my 10 yr old hand his brother a rock and told him to throw it at him and he would run towards the house. The youngest said no but was easily persuaded to take the rock and throw it. I came out of the house and both kids knew they were in trouble. The 3yr old said "sowwy mommy" and the oldest was trying not to laugh. I put the oldest in his room where he started to cry and then began to yell my name over and over. He repeatedly asked when he could come out and asked me over and over why he was put into his room. 10 minutes later after not responding to my name or answering his questions I went in for an apology and to explain why he was put into his room even through I had already explained earlier. After my last explanation, he began to ask me again why he was put into his room, and several variations of the "what would happen if...". It was like he just didn't care, he just wanted to talk for the sake of talking.
    I do not think that anything I do in form of "punishment" gets through to this child. He only acts like this at home. I asked his teacher, his aide, and even the special education teacher about his behavior at school and they all give me glowing reports about how sweet and kind he is. He does get easily distracted at school and can sometimes will act up, but they all have said that he was easily re-directed and that the issue never lasted very long. He told me once that they reason he will listen at school but changes his entire disposition at home is because we are mean. When asked what he meant by mean, he said because we put him in time-out and because we take away his privilege of playing video games.
    We have tried rewards for good behavior, but now he expects them all the time, regardless of his behavior. He will throw an almighty fit if he does not get what he considers to be the right number of good behavior stars at the end of the day. The fits and tantrums will become even worse if his youngest brother earns all his stars but he does not. We have also tried an allowance system and all it has gotten us is him demanding more and more money - and he will also ask other people to give him money if he does something nice. Like he asked my mom for a dollar after he went out into their yard and picked up all the sticks that had fallen from the trees during the previous night's wind storm. He was not asked to do this, he did it on his own - but he still expected payment for it.

    I just do not know what to do anymore. I feel like a failure as a parent as far as he is concerned. I am not sure how I could have one child that is so hyper, obsessive, and socially unskilled as our 10 year old and then turn around 6.5 years later and have another child that is the complete opposite. Our three year old uses his manners all the time. He loves to laugh, play and give hugs. He is the sweetest little boy, but I also fear that since he does look up to his older brother that there will be some changes to the personality of our youngest. I cannot think of anything else that I can do that will help our oldest catch a clue. How do you reason with someone or try to teach someone that does not give a darn what you have to say? How can you explain to someone about hurting others, like trying to get them into trouble, when they think it is funny? I know what siblings do not always get along, I know that I did not with my younger brothers... but I think that this situation can turn out to be dangerous as there is not impulse control in the 10 year old. There is not thought to consequences or any voice inside this kid's head to tell him to stop, this might hurt you or someone else.
    If anyone can give me some advice or guidance as I try to navigate these incredibly murky waters I would be forever grateful. I just do not know what to do anymore.
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    I was raised as an only child, and my kid is an only child, so I have no experience with handling the sibling issues. How much help is he getting from outside sources? Have you picked up The Explosive Child or Love and Logic series yet?
    *hugs* and hang in there!
  3. keista

    keista New Member

    Welcome, stick around, this is a great place to find support guidance and insights.

    It's often "slow" on weekends, but others will be around to add their 2 cents.

    #1 You are not a failure as a parent. Just having a difficult time navigating parenthood with a difficult child. You're looking for help in all directions, and that alone makes you a GREAT parent. To answer your question as to how you can have two such differnt kids the answer is genetics. I've got 3 kids, all with the same father, each has a different issue, different temperament, different eating habits etc. I did not change my ways between all three of them enough to have caused this - they were born that way.

    Your example story shows a very high level of social manipulation. That kind of thinking is usually what's lacking in ASDs I'd be interested in hearing more specific stories of his "social difficulties". My gut instinct is saying that it's not Asperger's. However, I am not an expert, I have one child with Asperger's, and know several others, and they are ALL DIFFERENT.

    It's great you finally got a Dr who would listen to your concerns. This is often a huge stumbling block, but now that someone is listening, don't stop until you feel the help he is getting is really helping. in my opinion the diagnosis is not as important as the help (therapies, medications, etc) but does play a very important role in getting the right help. by the way is your son on any medication?

    Take some time to create a signature, so everyone can get a brief understanding of your family (also that way there's no need to keep repeating the information in posts) Top right 'Settings' then to the left you'll find 'edit signature'

    Again, welcome and stick around.
  4. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Hi there - welcome!

    I don't know the whole story, of course, but it does sound like he might be somewhere on the spectrum. I'm guessing that he probably gets along with younger children better than his own age? Just a shot in the dark...

    It's not that he does not care, and you're NOT a bad parent. I think - I could be wrong, but - he holds it together as long as he can at school, and comes home and he is more comfortable and WHAM! He loses control. How is he in the mornings before school?

    Hugs... I do understand. All of us do...
  5. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Hi. I have an eighteen year old son who was diagnosed as Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified. I know what you are going through, but I think that perhaps you are expecting your son's motives and reactions to be like other children's and they won't. My son did not really speak until almost five either. I believe Aspergers is without a speech delay. Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified is with a speech delay.

    My son also can manipulate if he likes. However when he does stuff that seems like manipulation, that is often not because he wants to manipulate. It is usually for a reason we could not have guessed. I think he sounds Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).

    My son used to love throwing rocks, although he didn't do it at the windows. He also liked to watch balls going up and down. He could do these things for a long time. Your older son may have been asking his brother to do something that he enjoys looking at. Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids have very strange interests, are sensory seeking, are hard to figure out, and are very misunderstood. Do you know a lot about Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)? Is your son getting interventions at school? He should have an IEP. Have you found a group of kids and parents who live with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)? I found THIS invaluable as a resource. I not only got to meet and see at least one hundred Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) children, but their parents too and we swap stories and ideas.

    Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kid also often do not have the right facial expressions for what is going on. Some speak in a very flat voice even when they are excited. Some always speak in a flat voice. Some get overly stimulated when there is no need. I think getting special help for the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is important for him and for your family. Most likely, he is not going to respond to discipline like a "typical "child because his brain is wired differently. You need somebody to help you figure out what works. I suggest calling your nearest autaism society for a referral. I'm in a small town too, but there is help within an hour's drive. Psychiatric help did not do anything for our son because Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is not a mental illness. It is a neurological difference.

    Of course some Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) children have co-morbid mental health issues. Often once they are in interventions for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), they greatly improve their behaviors.

    I hope this helps a little. Let us know how things are going.
  6. Persephone

    Persephone New Member

    I just added my signature so hopefully that will help (hopefully it shows for you guys, it's not showing for me). :) We do have our oldest (I think I am going to have to think of special names for my boys for this forum lol) on medication. He is on 27mg of Concerta that he takes in the morning before school and 10mg of Ritalin that he takes in the afternoon while he is at school so he can still maintain some level of concentration while at school and at home for homework but not be medicated the entire day. I do not give him the Concerta during the weekends or on summer break unless I know he will need it, like at family get-togethers or something similar.
    My husband and I think it is Aspergers because he does not entirely fit the Autism diagnosis... but then again he doesn't entirely fit Aspegers either. lol He has no social etiquette, he is awkward, and considered "annoying" by other kids, especially their parents, and previously by former teachers. He also talks in questions. He doesn't make statements, but will ask different questions about what he learned or what happened to him in school. He is not obsessed about ordering things in his room, his room looks like a tornado hit it most of the time. He will, however, find a topic and obsessively talk about it. For example, he found out about volcanoes in school and thats all he wanted to talk about and read about for months. For a long time he like to talk about guns, knives, and the police - that phase made us very nervous because we had (and still don't have) no idea where he got any of the information he was talking about.
    He is super smart, at our last parent-teacher conference his test scores showed him at the top level of his grade or above grade level period. If you tell him something once, he will remember it forever and will bring it up years later. It seems that most of his difficulties are in the social arena - interacting with his classmates, adults, people of authority. We have him in group therapy to help him with his social skills and to learn self control. We tried individual therapy which didn't seem to work all that well, I am not sure if this was because he didn't need it or if the therapist didn't want to deal with him... which wouldn't be the first time that happened to him. He was taken out of kindergarten and put back into preschool because his kindergarten teacher couldn't (or wouldn't) work with him. He was put back into kindergarten the last 2 weeks of the school year so he could "graduate". When it came time for him to start the school year in the 1st grade we had switched schools and got him a lot of the help he didn't have before. He has been on an IEP since the 1st grade and with a full time one-on-one aide; he also goes into the Special Education classroom once a day, but this school tries very hard to keep him integrated into his normal classroom.

    We are at the point where we just tell people he is autistic. While people still do not understand autism, they have even less understanding of what Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified, odd, or aspergers is. Autism is at least something they have heard before and so it seems to make dealing with our oldest a lot easier... well maybe not easier, but they are slightly less likely to expect him to be "normal".
    Last edited: May 29, 2011
  7. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Just want to add my welcome. Sorry, lol, but your signature didn't come through. on the other hand I'm cooking hamburgers and can't post much today. Hang in. This is a lucky day for found a new nice family! DDD
  8. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Just a note, somewhere there is a thing you select to always show your signature. If you can't find it... Under the reply box is a check box that's labeled "Show your signature".
  9. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    A defining feature of Asperger's is a lack of language delays.
  10. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Sounds like you're doing all you can.

    I have heard that shortly Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified and Aspergers will be called Autistic Spectrum Disorder. Maybe ADHD too. My son is also high functioning and I almost laughed at some of what you said about your son because it was so much like mine. He gets on his favorite topic and that's all he wants to discuss or hear about. He is bright...not as bright as your son, but he gets good grades. What we are seeing now, at eighteen, is how far behind he is as far as people skills and life skills and, trust me, he has had help all of his life. So we are going to keep at him.

    We found that, at least with our son, ADHD medication made him hyper and aggressive so he is medication free.

    Stick around and keep us updated :)
  11. keista

    keista New Member

    I stand corrected. First, by MidwestMom's take on the situation. As I was reading it, yeah, the bells were going off reminding me that what looks like one type of behavior (in this case, social manipulation) through the filter of autism is the child seeking a desirable behavior, and that it only "looks" like the first thing. I've had no frame of reference to this specific type of behavior so I didn't see it. Sorry.

    Your second post most certainly describes a child on the Autism Spectrum.

    Going by MidwestMom's perspective of the rock throwing, maybe it's not so much throwing rocks, but the noise they make hitting the door. Maybe set up a "target practice" where he can safely throw rocks at stuff (old doors, trash cans, etc), make different noises, and work on gross motor skils at the same time (at 15 my son still "throws like a girl") I've had much success redirecting "bad" behaviors like this once I figured out what son's true motivation was. I've had failures, too, but more successes.

    And your signature is now coming through.
  12. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Heh, actually Sonic was fascinated watching any object go up in the air and fall down. For him it was not the noise, but the action. In her son's case, it could be the noise. These kids are such puzzles, nobody can figure them out just by reading about When Sonic had been a toddler his loved to turn the light on and off and could stare at the light forever. He was fascinated by something that most kids would be bored to death doing. He did outgrow that, but has other little things he likes to do, but his life and mine have greatly improved. He's a very good young adult, but will need help in adulthood. And that's ok. He's a happy young man :) Honestly, a sweeter young man doesn't exist, in spite of his early start and differences in viewing life.

    There is hope.
  13. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Welcome, Persephone (love the Greek mythology reference!).

    I have often said that autism doesn't just run in our family, it gallops (homage to Cary Grant in "Arsenic and Old Lace"). So when I say that your post is familiar in so many ways, please believe me!

    Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids are all capable of being very different. The underlying issues are -


    social issues

    splinter skills (often)

    repetitive behaviours (including facets of echolalia, pressured speech, perseverative speech and behaviours).

    ADHD symptoms are also common and increasingly, I believe they are part of the whole gamut.

    Now, that list above is not always present all the time. But they go THROUGH this at some stage and come through it and leave it behind, with varying levels of success over time. For example, difficult child 3 used to have echolalia, but was otherwise non-verbal. He now as a uni-level vocabulary. As for behaviour - he has learnt over time by copying the behaviours of those around him. So if I punished him, he copied tis and tried to punish me the same way. He had no concept of adult vs child. In his mind, however the adults in his world behaved towards him, was the way he was meant to behave in turn. If you hit a kid like this, they learn to hit. If you scold a kid like this, they learn to scold. And they are very, very good at copying you. They get into habits of behaviour really, really fast. I once stopped at the shop for an ice cream one day on the way back from the beach. After that, difficult child 3 expected ice cream every time and felt it was unfair and a break with tradition to not get ice cream each time we headed home from the beach.

    Splinter skills - we just had a repeat neuropsychologist assessment done on difficult child 3. His splinter skills span the spectrum. His worst score was 1st percentile. His best was 99th. Both really extreme. We know that his real IQ (whatever it may be) cannot be determined with a wide disparity, but whatever it is, it will be closer to the high score than the low, because you can't get an artificially high score with good testing.

    We can't diagnose on this site, but I can say that diagnosing on the autism spectrum is still inexact. MidWestMom & I each have a son who was given a different diagnosis to begin with.
    Diagnosis, as far as it has related to us, has been as follows:

    Asperger's is for the spectrum kids who did not have language delay.

    Autism is the label for spectrum kids who DID have language delay, even if they are now within normal range for language.
    Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified seems to be a category of "somewhere on the spectrum, but with some interesting variations" and is very subjective. Often a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified diagnosis will change later on, either entirely away from autism, or to one of the above two.

    Hyperlexia (still not well recognised) seems to me to be a subset of both Asperger's and autism - it is a form of high-functioning autism, in my opinion. It is interesting - a child who is often an early reader, but obsessed with letters and/or numbers to the exclusion of everything else. PLUS difficulty in understanding what they read. So for example, before he was 3 years old difficult child 3 could pick up a newspaper or Bible and read it aloud, fluently. But he was not able to converse. Really bizarre, but it gave us some clues as to what to do.

    My own (unqualified) opinion is that your son is a likely fit for high-functioning autism. I do not feel Asperger's is correct, because the language delay excludes it. Some experts do not worry about the history of language delay; instead, they look at how the child is now and make the diagnosis on that. difficult child 3, for example, often is described as Asperger's by teachers, school counsellors or doctors when they meet him, because he is clearly very intelligent and able to manage linguistically. Now. However, because he has a HISTORY of language delay, the autism label still stands and always will.

    Now to prognosis - some people view Asperger's as a less severe form of autism. it is not, necessarily. difficult child 3 has a friend who also had language delay and a diagnosis of autism. However, he has been managing at school without any support. His parents didn't want him labelled and because the boy is able to do well enough, they have been able to get away with it. I believe the boy is also hyperlexic, because he learned to talk the same way difficult child 3 did - by learning to read. This friend scores as "mild" in Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) testing. difficult child 3 scores "moderate". difficult child 1 scores as moderate, and has other issues (inability to mentally multi-task) that give him a poorer prognosis, even though he never had language delay and therefore has a diagnosis of Asperger's. difficult child 1's best friend is also Aspie, and a lot more severe. I personally feel that difficult child 3, my autistic son, has more potential to succeed socially and in the workforce than his Aspie older brother.

    Generally, the brighter the kid, the more they learn to adapt to a semblance of normality, and the better their long-term prognosis. difficult child 3 was not able to be told about his autism diagnosis until he was 8 years old. Later in the year he said to me, "You know - I think I'm getting better at pretending to be normal." We explained about autism to him, by comparing it to computer operating systems. When the printout comes off the computer, you can't tell whether the text document was written up and formatted on a Mac or a easy child. The same document could be done on either type of computer and it could look identical. But the operating instructions to the computer will be very different for a Mac, as for a easy child. And some people have Mac brans while others have easy child brains. Both are good, but they need to be given instructions in the right way in order to function at their best.

    Some autistics are withdrawn; some are highly social. difficult child 1 is the former, difficult child 3 is the latter. But the social problems in autism do NOT mean that the person is always withdrawn. Just not fully comprehending social issues and often inappropriate. For example, easy child 2/difficult child 2 would want lots of cuddles from me and choose to give me random hugs often at the wrong time. I could be chopping herbs (and risk cutting myself) and she would grab me for a hug. Or I could be talking to someone official at the door, and I would get grabbed for a hug. If I rejected her, she would be very upset and hurt. She was very tactile, seeking out certain textures and fondling them (still does). She found creative ways to hide this in more appropriate acceptable behaviours. Even now she is nearly 25 and married, I still sometimes get a random, "Love you, Mummy," and a delightful hug. She's not underfoot any more, so I value what I get! I have seen her snuggle on the sofa with her best friend, both girls entwined in a cuddle. Nothing sexual about it, just both getting comfort from a prolonged hug. An interesting measure of this - Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) people often do like hugs but they need to have some control over when and how much.

    Now to your son's behaviour issues - a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid (aka autism in whatever form) needs to be handled a different way, than the way we normally would discipline a child (successfully). What works well in most cases, is disastrous in these kids. The school is obviously doing something right, and you're obviously doing something wrong. You cannot make this kid adapt to your methods, it's clearly not working. One of the hallmarks of these kids generally is a lack of adaptability. So you need to be the one to change. This does not mean you're a bad parent, just that your parenting techniques, whatever they are, good or bad, are not working for this child and are in fact adding to the problems. Of course you are not doing this on purpose, but it is still an issue, BECAUSE your child learns by copying authority figures, and also because your child is far less adaptable than we expect kids to be.

    Your child is far less able to change, but you are the adult and you are more adaptable. So you have to be the hero here, even if you feel he is being disrespectful. Watch him, observe him, not the times when you are clashing and try to see if you can work out what he is thinking, where this behaviour comes from. When I did this, I quickly realised that the behaviour I thought was disrespect (and needing discipline) was simply my child talking to me the way I talked to him. Actually, the first kid I had trouble with this way was my daughter, easy child 2/difficult child 2. difficult child 1 was always well-behaved, passive in fact. He learned to cope simply by zoning out at school. So the teachers all said he was well-behaved, but not completing his work.

    School is more structured than home, plus there are a lot of other kids to copy, the classroom behaviour is very sheep-like - flock mentality. At home your son is more free to be an individual, only he doesn't really know how to be.

    Do try and get your hands on "The Explosive Child" by Ross Greene. It will help you understand the ODD side of things (and I do not believe in ODD as a stand-alone disorder, I believe it is something induced in our children by behaviours our children are exposed to/discipline methods that are a bad fit). If the ODD has been caused/aggravated by your trying to be strict and controlling, then you need to change direction. It seems paradoxical, but what can happen when you try to really clamp down on these kids, is it becomes a power struggle as they try to assert control for themselves, in conflict with you. You need to find a way to let him have control, in areas where it doesn't matter to you, so he will let you have control where it does matter.

    To simplify - you need to become your child's facilitator and support, rather than your child's obstacle. In his mind, I mean. Right now he says you're mean, when in your mind you're just doing what parents are expected to do. But right now what he feels is important and needs to be taken on board.

    There is a way. Once you find it, you will see the really great kid that the school values.

    I found a really good info site once by Tony Attwood. Look him up, it will cheer you up. Attwood listed the positive qualities of those with Asperger's (it also applies to high-functioning autism).
    Here are a few:



    Honest (they learn over time that lying is not one of their skills!)

    Law-abiding (as long as it is the law as they understand it to be)

    Motivated to focus really intently for a long time on something that interests them.

    Autistic kids feel emotion really keenly, but we don't always recognise their feelings when they express them. A deadpan expressionless face can hide a crying heart. Or a happy one.

    I have seen difficult child 3 with other autistic kids, out on a play-date together. These kids are often very uninhibited about supporting one another and cheering for one another. I remember watching a group of them bowling, and when one of them got a strike, the others all rushed up and hugged him, slapped him on the back and cheered him. They seemed to know when to back off because the hug had lasted long enough, they have learned to recognise each other's cues. These are teens/young adults. Similarly, difficult child 3 has recently started writing stories, but there is a lack of inhibition and self-consciousness in his writing that actually makes him seem more skilled. He writes with the openness of an elementary school child, but with a uni level vocabulary.

    I used to dread ever having an autistic child. But now I have three of them, I love them to pieces and value them just as they are.

    When he was younger, a Scripture teacher (we have optional religious instruction in school, it's "opt-out") came up to me and told me that she had prayed with difficult child 3 that his autism would be healed. I was so angry with her about that - she meant well, but she had no idea what a negative message that was sending difficult child 3 about himself. Also, autism doesn't just 'get better' and I did not want difficult child 3's faith (or otherwise) impaired by a lack of cure materialising. A kid's faith is a precious thing. Autistics either cling to faith, or cling to atheism. Very few of them are apathetic about faith or otherwise.

    I hope this has info for you that you can use. I am glad you're here and hope we can help you.

  14. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Very interesting and informative, Marguerite (the points you make about the adult having to be the one to change is the point I was trying to make, alas surrounded by some misunderstanding :) )
    Persephone, will you be able to have your son assessed or evaluated further? Are you within a good system of healthcare?
  15. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Wow,Marg. You did it again :)

    And how could I forget the hyperlexia? By no means do all Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids have this, but my son was fascinated with numbers and letters from as early as we adopted him (age two). Counting could stop a tantrum. So could saying the alphabet. They tend to love rote learning, but are not as good as explaining subjective expressive language, such as, "Tell us about your vacation."

    A typical child will gush and talk about all he/she did and add "It was so much fun to go on the rollercoaster! My daddy had to hold me tight!" An Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kid may say, "We went to Great America." That's it. The other person will then have to ask, "Did you have fun?" "Yes!" Then "What rides did you go on?" "The new rollercoaster." "Was it scary?" "A little. My dad went with."

    I have had four other kdis and this is like pulling teeth to get info out of him. However, when he is talking about his obession, he does not quiet. He can talk about it non-stop for a looooooooooooooooong

    These kids are terrific and grow into terrific adults :) If they are higher functioning, t hey tend to learn, at various rates, how to act "typical" to a lesser or greater extent. If they are very very high functioning, they may be able to mimic "typical" really well. My son is not in that category, but he does pretty well. by the way, his early speech delay is gone. He is now above average in language and often sounds like a "Little Professor." He likes to use big words!

    My son was diagnosed, in this order: ADHD/ODD (wrong), bipolar disorder (wrong), Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified (right!) and now autistic spectrum disorder (right!). They are actually the same thing. To get services, Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) Disorder will do a better job than either Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified or Aspergers. I was told by the neuropsychologist we went to (a Mayo Clinic guy) that Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified is "atypical autism." These kids tend to be friendlier and present as more social than others on the spectrum..
  16. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Welcome, StephaniePersephone. (I think I met you on another thread here, dreams or something?)

    Anyway, I have to agree with-the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) spectrum guess. And I agree with-this: Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kid also often do not have the right facial expressions for what is going on. Some speak in a very flat voice even when they are excited. Some always speak in a flat voice. Some get overly stimulated when there is no need. I think getting special help for the Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is important for him and for your family. Most likely, he is not going to respond to discipline like a "typical "child because his brain is wired differently.

    Wrong expression. Period.
    So many kids get misdxed in this area because they seem to have antisocial behavior (the diagnosed kind, not as an adjective). My college-age daughter has already come up with-2 addit'l dxes for difficult child based on her meager 2 yrs of school, trying to convince me he's got ASBD (don't know if that's the correct abbrev).

    You're going to have to sit down with-your difficult child and go through photos of different expressions, and use your own face, and his face, and a mirror. He's not going to like it, because he will think he's being bossed around. But in some way, he'll like the attention. :)

    by the way, my son's room looks like a tornado hit it. He collects things but has no system. He just wants more and more. Sigh.
  17. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Tornado hit our entire house. difficult child 3 has (I think) the world's most comprehensive collection of Nerf, as well as every possible ballbearing rollercoaster it is possible to build. In our living room! I would like to reclaim the living room but the bedroom is already overloaded. Every so often I drag out what I can reach and assess it for function before I throw it away.

    On the subject of language delay and "He's not got that problem any more, his language is now normal," I urge CAUTION TO ALL!!!
    We have gone into this in minute detail with a gem of a speech pathologist (and very good friend of mine) who is I think also a tad obsessive. But she directed that Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) of hers onto my son's language capabilities and went further than most speech therapists do. What she found makes sense and would be valid for anybody who ever had language delay - you can never reclaim the time your child lost when non-verbal.

    When a baby is learning language, the earlier the better because babies as they grow, are losing brain connections fast. We know that learning two languages from birth is the best way to learn a second language. As babies learn, they form A LOT of mental connections between every item in teir brain. The older a person is when they learn something, the fewer mental connections there are. Repetition carves deeper grooves and puts in a few more connections, but nothing can compete with what a baby's brain can do.

    So if your child was still learning to talk at age 5, while the kid next door was fluent at 18 months, it doesn't matter if they now have the same vocabulary; the kid next door will always be faster to find the right word, will always be faster to make language-based mental connections. There are some things you can do to put a bit more advantage your child's way, but this will be a lifelong frustration for your child to some extent.

    We were given an exercise for difficult child 3 (he was in Year 5 at the time - 10 years old). I will use "apple" as an example.
    Think of "apple". Now give me ten words that relate to "apple". Talk to me about "apple". We have apple trees, I like apple crumble, baked apple, apple trees are fun to climb, you can have red apples and green apples, apples are sweet, the apple flesh is white... you get the idea. But just doing this exercise is putting in more brain pathways. Repetition helps even more. Now do this exercise over and over, with different words. Make a game of it. We used to 'play' this game while driving from place to place. Expect some resistance, especially form a child with a history of language delay, even it is is resolved now, because their fewer pathways mean this task is more difficult.

    Then we were on holidays and saw this little hand-held electronic game "20Q". Check out the website. It is not quite the same as this therapy game, but it does the same sort of job because when you think of "apple" (for example) the game asks questions on a little screen. "Is it animal? Vegetable? Mineral?" and later questions could include, "Is it bigger than a loaf of bread?" Apparently senseless, but this little game works on its own pathways and most of the time 'guesses' what you are thinking of. We found it to be engaging for difficult child 3 as well as an easier way for him to administer his own therapy, as an adjunct.

    When difficult child 3 was assessed for language (we have to have it done to get special provisions for exams in school) our therapist found that his vocabulary is in the superior range, but other aspects of his communication, while within normal range, are towards the bottom end of the range. She said that this is an almost universal finding in any person who had, at some early stage, significant language delay. It is all due to the child being older than most people, when language was being laid down. And as a result, there will always be a huge gulf between what the child could say, and what he does say. It will always take more effort tan for others, to communicate. Which is why, even when they have an amazing vocabulary, they still seem to pick and choose their words EXCEPT when they're talking about their favourite subject. THEN they're off and running (at the mouth!) because they have gone over their favourite subject so much, that those pathways are deeper-grooved and more numerous. They talk non-stop about their favourite topics because they CAN and it is such a joy for them to feel free and to share what they love. Because they are also always a little bit (or more) egocentric, and "What I love, you love too. Or will when I share my passion with you."

    So this is a message to all of us whose child had, at some time, some level of language delay: NEVER take your child's now superior intelligence and language abilities for granted, because the past is always with the child to some extent, and even decades later, a skilled therapist can find the evidence. Because it is there.

  18. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Kiddo has one of those, they're pretty easy to find at Wal-Mart here. She likes to toss it things it doesn't know, like Megalodon. She's learned that she has to be more general and less specific sometimes.
  19. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Instead of Megalodon, try dinosaur.