High functioning Asperger

Jyn - posted on 09/10/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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I've become more and more frusterated with my son, who just turned 7 this past July. Please bear with my long post...



He wasn't ready for preschool, to begin with. He could care less about letters and numbers or how to spell his name- all he cared about were dinosaurs, fish and sharks. That was his whole life.

We enrolled him into Kindergarten and after a few weeks his teacher met with me and told me that Danny really wasn't working out. He was struggling, but just didn't know it.



Holding him back and putting him into pre-school was a tough decision. I think had it not been for the fact his brother who is 13 mos younger wasn't able to go into pre-school because his birthday fell 3 days after the deadline- I might have fought it tooth and nail. I didn't want both boys in the same class! He did fine in pre-school and then moved onto Kindergarten the next year.

I met with his teacher a few times regarding Daniel's behavior and she was just as frusterated with the need to micro-manage him throughout the day.

"I would say to myself, well ok this is typical for a kindergartener but then I had to remind myself- Danny is going to be 7 this year!" she said to me one day. She had to spell out what she wanted him to do or else he would be semi-lost. "Daniel, I need you to take your food and walk over to the blue circle and sit down to eat your food." she would have to say when all it took for the other kids was simple commands since they had been doing it all year.

Also, he would become obsessed with his artistic letters. When he would have to write his name he would get caught up on drawing each letter and spend 15 minutes on his name alone- he is an incredible artist! But again, to get him going on what he needs to do is tough.



He was in speech therapy in school because of speech impediments that made it very hard to understand him, but apparently they said he is making improvements.



This summer was the hardest Ive had with him. We have a rule here that no one leaves the house property without asking permission- period. We have a drainage area surrounded by tree-lings bushes and a short cyclone fence. It's for water run-off and not for kids to be playing in.



He is so obsessed with what we call the 'pond' that he literally cannot hold himself back from going there. The frogs live there, he finds snakes and praying mantises and dragonflies there. But the stagnant water ALSO has caused many rashes to form up and down his legs and arms.



Although he is 7 and we live in a medium income newer development cul-de-sac and have VERY anal retentive neighbors who have already called Child protective services because of suspicions that were not founded (we have 6 kiddos now and they have 0). We can't afford ANYTHING to happen to have the police called for any reason and they view our kids playing out of our yard without us as being 'neglect' (please, I can't roll my eyes any harder).



But this summer, despite knowing the rules and remembering how traumatic it was to have CPS come into our house and interrogate us, he sneaks out to the pond area. I gather him, reprimand him, and ground him- it doesn't do anything. Five minutes after I let him out of grounding, he's sneaking back out.

Guys- he did this 2 weeks IN A ROW. I just about pulled my hair out. I have a newborn and a normal 7 year old should not be having such severe issues following instructions!! The rest of my kids, including my 3 1/2 yr old and 6 yr old follows instructions beautifully. Danny literally has no perception of consequences. He will take it and then just keep doing the wrong thing, over and over and over. Put him in time out- he'll stay there for an hour without arguing. Take away his toys- he doesnt care, he has a vivid imagination. I felt horrible having to ground him and take away everything for 2 weeks straight... he asked one day out of those 2 weeks to play outside, which he promptly was praised for and was allowed to do.



He's very very picky with his food- can't stand certain foods no matter what and is a stick because of it. He literally wont eat if he doesnt like it. He randomly pees in things on things, in the corner or on the rug and when I ask WHY he just gives me some excuse that, "He wanted to hear the pee on the carpet". If I ask him "DO we pee on the carpet?" He says, "No." and can tell me where we pee. His room smells like urine now, I have no idea all the places he's peed in there and I find random concentrated urine behind bins in the closet, etc.



He walked and talked late and he is in the 5th percentile for his height and weight, and has been his whole life. His cousin has autism and is the same age, was born here also and my husband's brother is VERY OCD and on medication. Should we consider getting him tested for HFA?



We considered it last year but dropped it after he seemed to be catching up in school...

Thank you SO MUCH for any help or links or insight you can give me.

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Judi - posted on 09/10/2009

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I would strongly urge you to get your son tested. My 11 year old daughter was diagnosed last year with Aspergers. I wish I had gotten her help sooner as it could have prevented alot of headaches,heartaches,and undue punishments on her. She didn't act out quite as severe as it sounds your son is but she did have some of the same reactions or lack there of I should say. Example: You could punish her and she wouldn't care. I remember once I literally took EVERYTHING out of her room but her bed. No toys,nothing at all to play with and that child could have cared less. I was baffled! She has ALWAYS been a picky eater. At 6 months old she wouldn't eat baby food and never did. As a toddler and young child she ate only pizza and spaghetti--every single day of her life! Dr's told me that some kids were just picky eaters and she would out grow it. But with her it was different. It was like the textures of the foods would make her projectile vomit. It was horrible for a while. Anyways,long story short I took her to the pediatrician who referred us to psychologist. After a few sessions with her she recommended to have her tested for Autism due to my daughters lack of ability to make eye contact,inability to answer a question that required her to make a decision,and her emotional being. We went through all the testing and got the diagnosis of Aspergers. Since the diagnosis we are able to adjust to her needs and things go a lot smoother. We do have her on medication which has totally worked wonders for her. The school last year told me that they have never seen medication work so well for changing a child. What they mean by that is she has opened up more socially,she has gone from failing grades to making straight A's for the first time ever in her life! I hope you are able to find the answers that you need. If you need/want Im here to listen,offer advice,or swap stories!

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Lisa - posted on 09/20/2017

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Everything you said sounds just like what I'm dealing with and same age. I'm 46 and have adult children as well. This journey has been a rough one but I don't mind I just wish I knew how to deal with ceetain issues. Shopping is a nightmare. Does not listen to me with hardly anything. Wanders off. Touches breaks on accident. Yells out and runs off. Can't sit still. Its exhausting.

Lisa - posted on 09/20/2017

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Everything you said sounds just like what I'm dealing with and same age. I'm 46 and have adult children as well. This journey has been a rough one but I don't mind I just wish I knew how to deal with ceetain issues. Shopping is a nightmare. Does not listen to me with hardly anything. Wanders off. Touches breaks on accident. Yells out and runs off. Can't sit still. Its exhausting.

Michelle - posted on 09/12/2009

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You are not alone. My son is now 13 and your story sounds errily familiar. It is very frustrating. My son still struggles to this day. It isn't as bad as it was. He is in speech class and has been pulled out of class to attend a class that teaches kids how to be social and acceptable behaviors. I am looking into seeing about some socialization clinics outside the school. The school can only do so much. Meeting with teachers, principals, and specail education dept regularly is a must, but things can still fall through the cracks. BTW my son isn't on any medication. That was a personal choiced though. Good luck!

[deleted account]

Your letter touched my heart! It is hard to believe that our 24 year old was ever where you are right now. He is currently serving a service mission for our LDS church at a guest ranch in central Washington State and doing extremely well. Back to your concerns. First and foremost you need to understand that his behavior is still about making choices. Having clear consequences for inappropriate behavior is very helpful. For example...if he pees anywhere but in the toilet or outside on a tree (he is a boy after all) then in addition to having to clean up the mess he has made he has to do another chore...like scrubbing the bathroom. Also you will need to ferret out where he has peed in his room and have him assist in cleaning and sanitizing his room. Then he will need to understand that he will be responsible for his room and if he makes a mess by peeing in it then he will have to clean it and clean other rooms as well because he is RESPONSIBLE.lYes I know he is only 7 but he can do this.

As far as leaving the house...do you ever take him to the pond that he is so fasinated with? It can be hard with lots of kids...we have 8 and he is our 4th and our second son. It is hard to be consistent with consequences but the rewards are AWESOME! I read a book called You and Your ADD Child and this was the most helpful book for us. (We have 3 ADHD boys, an ADD girl and our Aspbergers boy).

In addition to specific consequences, you need to have specific rewards too. Like if he does what he is told in a timely manner then he might get to stay up later that night.

Food will come. Ours would not eat a potato unless it was a french fry, and hated pie. Now he loves potatoes and loves pie. Time is your friend in this area. We did make sure that one bite of everything was taken and that was a challenge but it was the same rule for everyone in the house.

Good luck to you.

Barb

Heidi - posted on 09/11/2009

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Hi Jyn. My son is 8 and very similar to your son. He loves animals and talks about them non-stop. We have also had problems in the past with him wandering off, etc. He was diagnosed with autism when he was in kindergarten and is now is 3rd grade and doing well. He has an aide at school who helps keep him on task and explains things in a simpler way to help him understand. He is not on any meds and he has improved A LOT in the past few years. I would definately get your son tested and also read books and do research on autism/aspergers to learn about how you can help him.

Jyn - posted on 09/11/2009

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Well, I WILL NOT tolerate disrespect- period. It's one thing to disobey, another thing to abuse me or others. Im lucky Ive taught my kids from the ground up- you dont call me names or hit me or do anything to abuse me or other people in any way.

The blatent disregard is my number one pet peeve. I have always been a firm believer that discipline is NOT payback. I don't discipline out of anger at the behavior rather than because the behavior need correction to help them be good people when they grow up.

These are all things I explain to all of my children.

The reason I question whether or not IM GOING INSANE or if he really has an issue is because if I ask him what the right thing to do is- he can answer.
"Danny- what do we do when we have to go potty?" "Use the toilette."
"Danny, what do we do when we want to go outside?" "Um...ask."
And when I inquire as why he didnt choose to do that, he either gives me some hock-a-nanny excuse or says, "I don't know."

If I ask him why he went outside without asking after we JUST GOT THROUGH being grounded all day and even discussed it afterwards he says in a tiny voice, "But, I just wanted to go see the baby snakes because they like me and they wont bite me mama..."

He enjoys playing by himself and can usually be found by himself in the bushes looking for bugs. He cannot help himself to grab a spider as we walk down the sidewalk into a restaurant, or to turn over rocks and mess with the dusty dirt when we get out of the car in the parking lot at the grocery store.

I was the textbook example of ADHD as a kid. I was on Ritalin, Wellbutrin, Adderall- you name it and I know I was probably more frusterating for my parents. But Daniel is not only obsessive over things, he is spacey and nonchalant about misbehaving. He can make eye contact but seems to look sot of through you or just.. not 'get it'.

My husband doesn't know what to think- he says that he was the same way as a kid. I don't know what to think, but I agree- I should get him tested. I just really worry about doctors who are so quick to get your kids on medication.

"Oh yes, yes, yes, it shows your child is ADHD, OCD, has bi-polar tendencies minoring in aspergers...."

Thank you for your responses! Today is only day 3 of school, Im going to email his teacher and request a meeting to try and monitor his behavior. He has been becoming more unmanageable over the summer- and gets sent out of bible study every Sunday pretty regularly (bible study is a lot of horseplay too- they're very active so it's just blatent disregard of rules and not following them).

I found a pee spot in his bedroom again this morning. He literally walked 2 steps from his bed and peed. He knows how to use the restroom, even in the middle of the night- so this all is very un-nerving.

Michele - posted on 09/11/2009

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You may want to call me because my son is seven and we are having the same issues with not caring about consequences. Nothing has worked and I have worked night and day on behavior therapy for one year. He is high fuctioning aspergers with tics and anxiety. Mornings and ransitions to go places are awful. He is disobediant and rude and disrepectful all the time. I try to stay calm and low tone and not show emotions when I am so upset. he calls me names, kicks holes in walls on timeout, and spits and hits. herapist say to use positive affirmaion and low tomes and lots of touch and verbal praise. Hard to do when he is kicking my new car or breaking my valuables. My son is good at school and they don't see the behaviors. This is good but they then say it must be a parenting issue. My other kids are good but are picking up on his bad mouthing off and saying shut up and stupid. It affects us all. I am in the process of getting the right behaviorist into the house and psychologist who gets Aspergers. private me and we can exchange numbers! I did have him tested and he was Aspergers but first diagnosed with Tourettes and ADHD and OCD and now Aspergers. He also has encopresis and poops on things and I have found urine stains also.

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