My family doesn't believe me.

Danielle - posted on 12/19/2011 ( 53 moms have responded )

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Hello,
I am just wondering if anyone has had issues with your family accepting Autism as a diagnosis?

My son is three years old, and we are on a a variety of wait lists to get him evaluated for Autism, as well as any other feasible options to be the cause of his behaviors.

At three years old, he is over a year and a half behind in his vocabulary. He doesn't interact with other children. He doesn't play with his toys correctly ( he will carry them around, but rarely imagination play). He gets obsessed over odd items (like pop bottle lids, garbage, ect). He has trouble with personal space ( often when he meets new people he will throw himself to the floor and tantrum.. Even if they just say "hi" to him. Other times, we will be in public and he will try to sit on random strangers laps).
He will sometimes sneak off, and I've found him sitting in his closet, or in the basement. He has lined up his toys, and will throw a tantrum if they are moved even an inch. He also has troubles in switching from one focus to another ( like going form coloring to play-doh).

I have confided in my family with my concerns, and they think I am overreacting. They keep telling me that he is just spoilt, and he needs better discipline. He gets time out when he acts out, or is throwing tantrums. They think that I need to spank him, and have even said that he needs to "fear me".

They are never around, and NEVER help, or offer to watch him for a break. Obviously, knowing how they feel about his behaviour issues, I wouldn't feel comfortable leaving him with them.

It is just upsetting because I feel like they don't understand what happens each day, and they don't realize that he is not a standard three year old.
Every time I mention it, they roll their eyes and tell me to "Stop", "I don't agree with you", "There is nothing wrong with your kid", and I always feel invalidated.

Has anyone else dealt with unsupportive families?
What did you say? Did they still act the same after a diagnosis? How did you make them realize?

I feel like they blame me for his behavior because they think he is just a brat. My sister has even said that 'I shouldn't put all my hope on a diagnosis because if its negative that could only imply its, (his outbursts and delays), my fault.'

We have gotten a range of tests already done: Ears checked, speech pathologist, sensory therapist. He also attends pre-k, as a part of an outreach program the government pays for delayed, and emotional sensitive children.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 12/20/2011

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Not with kids and autism/adhd, but with hubby and disability!



It's infuriating, no matter which end it is, too! I finally realized that I wouldn't get support from any of our family members, with the exception of my MIL. Once I realized that, I quit sharing updates with anyone but her. She's helpful, and supportive, and not judgemental.



Like the other ladies have said: Quit giving them updates. Quit mentioning your son at all, other than "He's doing well" and leave it at that. Even if he isn't, they don't need to have more ammo to make you feel worse with.



After you've gotten the tests done, and the results back, if he's diagnosed as autistic, then you find a supportive group of people and move forward. If the result is negative, keep looking! Many things can cause different behavioral patterns.



Give your family time. Once they realize that you're not just crying for attention, or wanting more for your son than others have, they will (hopefully) come around, and be a good support resource.







If they don't, then they will never realize the simple joy of interacting with your son, and that is NOT his fault. It's their loss.



Geez, does your sister even HAVE kids? What an insensitive twit!



I'm sorry, it just really bothers me that families in this day and age cannot find some small shred of support for their own family members! Sore subject for me, I guess.



At any rate, find a support system that works for you. Friends are a good start. And we're here, too :-)

Kris - posted on 12/21/2011

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First off.... Take a deep breath. Each child is different in their own way. I have 5 children ages 13, 9, 8, 5, and 4.

My 5 year old was diagnosed High Functioning Autistic with PDD (Pervasive developmental disorder.) 3 years ago. He has tantrums, isn't learning certain things, is obsessed with certain colors, or shapes, movies or items in the house.

We have learned to change our parenting and not try and change the people around us. They won't change! I used to be the parent that would make comments to people at the store who had children out of control. Then, I discovered that I have one of those children. Talk about an eye-opener for me. Now, I voice up to those same type of parents who I USED to be and tell them that I pray they never have a child who has Autism.

My son is AMAZING. And we as a family have learned not to do certain things that will set him off. He has also learned to make sure that he focuses better. FOCUS - that is a word that we use a lot in our house. We have relearned to be better parents and now, my family and my husbands family (who still struggle with understanding) are finally getting a grasp that they will just have to deal with our parenting because this is OUR child!

There are certain stores that we do not go into because the lights effect him. We avoid perfume counters. Stores with 2 doors to enter or exit are no longer used. There are certain stores with certain tiles on the floor in different colors that we avoid. He wears ear muffs places and carries a weighted backpack.

Time-outs will not always work to help with the tantrums... maybe just remove his from the situation instead. Maybe his closet is his happy spot. My son like to rock in his booster seat with ear muffs on while reading.

I was a spanker until my son, who doesn't always understand WHAT spanking is and WHY it is happening.

Your best bet is to avoid the situation of the family until you get a grasp on your child and their behavior. He will be able to sense the tension and that maybe part of the "set-off" that he is having. Maybe there is a food allergy or a vitamin deficiency. My son takes kids double dose of Melaluca vitamins for Kids plus a B12 supplement. We avoid bleached wheat (and now grind our own) and he has blood sugar issues as well so we keep protein snacks around all of the time!

Amanda - posted on 12/19/2011

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My 3 yr old has behavioural issues that I am in the process of dealing with (I'm not delaing with autism but maybe ADHD)
Anyway my in laws have been giving me grief because I went and sort help from my doctor and various specialists.
They told me the same as your family', that there's nothing wrong with my son, that it's all down to the way I parent him and my lack of parenting skills and that I'm the one who needs to seek professional help.
They don't mind him during the day, they never offer me a break or extra help or support me when I have bad days.
I stopped telling them anything. If they asked how the kids were I would say fine and left it at that, gave them need to know info only.

Since the last specialist when he confirmed in front of my husband that it's not my fault and he does have issues that need addressing and my concerns are valid they have backed off.

At first they stopped talking to me, they didn't phone, we didn't see them. Now we have a plan of action to dealing with him they have just recently started calling a few times a week again and we have seen them 3 weekends on the trot.

It's not your fault at all and to answer your question, my in laws have been more supportive since the last appointment and have accepted that I needed to do what I have with my son.
Give them time, if they want to help you son they need to be on the same page as you

Liz - posted on 12/27/2011

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I'm 22 with possible aspergers and when I mentioned it to my friends they rolled their eyes and said what ever. Its just a thing people for some reason dont accept. Go with your feeling because if it is you can catch it early and he can live a normal life but if you dont and you find out later then it maybe too late. My friend is autistic and by the time they found out he was 15 and there wasn't much they could do so he struggles on life trying his best. To your family stuff them if their going to say that yet not help then why talk to them about it. Find friend you can confide in and try and find some one who can watch your little one.

Louise - posted on 12/20/2011

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I dealt with the same situation. Luckily my first born had made me look like the perfect mom, I did everything the same with my second son and experienced severe behavioral issues that were later diagnosed as ADHD BiPolar and OCD. My family would say (before diagnosis) what he needs is a good spanking! Then after the diagnosis they scoffed. When meds helped give him the tools he needed to control himself he was the sweetest child. It took a while before family began to ask what brought on the positive changes. When I told them about the meds they would comment that he was over medicated because no child is that sweet. Years have passed and he is an 11 year old boy that has his struggles but is thriving. The family doesn't ask and I don't tell. Every once in a while I get a "remember when...." story. I have many friends in the autism community and regardless of your child's diagnoses- you can find support there. Parents with children that have challenges to overcome to become successful in society are likely the only people who will understand what you're going through.

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De-anne - posted on 10/23/2012

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I have a 3 year old girl. Not with the same problems. When I read what you wrote of his behaviour, I immediately thought something was up with him. A child shouldn't fear a parent. I don't think it is right for them to say he should fear you. I really hope you get the help you need. I can understand how you feel. I may not be able to offer some advice.All the best.I am sure things will work out in the end.

Sabrina - posted on 10/23/2012

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Stay tough for your child. Just do the best you can with him. Ignore your family. You have to do that at times for your own and children's sake. I have gone through this with my own family and still do at times! And I'm 46 now. It hurts and very hard to deal with when your family won't just be supportive and keep their opinions to themselves. Trust you!!



Keep studying and does not sound like you need to spank him!! I am a believer in spankings but to a point. I give other options first then threaten it then go through with it if the child pushes it. But your child sounds like he just needs love and guidance.



You are doing real well. And it is good for a parent to see the child's places to work on in life. Then you can be there for them.



Like I said, hang tough and believe in yourself and brush off the family's thorns. ;)

Mitzi - posted on 10/23/2012

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moms you know best how your children are to grow even if you don't know get help by all means you are childrens best advocate keep fighting for them

Mitzi - posted on 10/23/2012

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hi mom I know it's hard for a family or even a parent teacher think that their child having issues or needing extra help I tell you to go with your gut feeling and get some help for your child in for you so you know how they have some other skills to raise your unique child and if you have family support after that great if not build your own support system. you're a great mom just keep on going you can do it

Terrie - posted on 10/23/2012

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My son is 12 and Autistic but you just described him to a T. We did not have family support in the beginning. Everyone thought our son needed a good spanking. He was diagnosed with PDD-NOS at age 2 and then at age six he was diagnosed with mild to moderate Autism. He has always been behind in language. Plus he has shown all the other signs your son shows. I would not dought it if your son is diagnosed with Autism too. Anyway, it takes time for family to come around. Usually it happens when they are older and either show how much progress they made through therapy or older and if the therapy did not help much then they say the difference between them and children their on age. However at age three it is hard for the untrained eye to see the difference from a delayed child with Autistic tendencies and the typical child need a firm hand. Also some of yoir family see exactly what you are talking about but they dont want to because they are in denial.

Heidi - posted on 10/23/2012

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My 10 year old nephew was diagnosed several years ago, and my mother still doesn't accept his diagnosis. I won't go into details, but it's hard on my sister. My advice is to reach out to those who are supportive and don't talk about it with those who aren't. I know that's not easy. It hurts when you know things aren't "normal" and you can't confide in those your are closest to or just lean on them for support.



Maybe you could find some sort of support group, either locally or on line, for parents in your situation. Sometimes it makes all the difference to find someone, ANYONE, who understands what you are dealing with.

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I understand where you are coming from. I had this with my youngest. She is not autistic, but we think she might have verbal dyspraxia. When she was two she hardly said a word and what she did say was garbled. I talked to friends and family about my worries but most said she was fine and that her brother must be talking for her. Still, I managed to get her assessed by a speech therapist and the therapist did say she had a delay. I had good friends say to me that I was wrong for taking her to a speech therapist and that she was too little and there was nothing wrong. Some days I wanted to cry because I thought everyone saw me as overreacting.



My daughter is now four. Her speech has improved a lot although she still is unclear and struggles with most of her consonant sounds. Most of my friends agree that she needs help, but everyone, including the teachers, keep saying how much she has improved. I just worry that will mean that they think she doesn't need help any more. Until my daughter can speak as clearly as my son, she will need help in my eyes. I just wish everyone else saw it that way.

Courtney - posted on 10/22/2012

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My oldest was diagnosed with Autism at 3yo, and i had the exact same issue with my mom. BUT he is 8yo now, and honestly, I think it was a misdiagnosis. He's currently being tested for dyslexia. It runs in my family, and believe it or not, dyslexia is FAR more than just reading letters mixed up. He definitely presented as Autistic, though. (thus, the diagnosis and years of treatment). He literally JUST got out of speech therapy last week.

Dawn - posted on 10/22/2012

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I am going through something similar but opposite. My inlaws think my 7 year old son is autistic, however we could tell he wasn't and even put him through tests twice, once at 4 years old and just recently, to appease them. The diagnosis is that he has anxiety and needs speech help in school. Otherwise he is normal. He just doesn't care for my inlaws because they treat him differently because of their belief. Even though we have written proof, they still think we are ignoring the problem. It's very frustrating. Grandparents are supposed to love their grandchildren unconditionally. It hurts when they are unsupportive.

Brenda - posted on 01/30/2012

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My husband did not believe there were any problems with our youngest, but i began worrying about autism when he was about 18mos and began the assessment process with my husband thinking i was an idiot. You learn where to get the support u need, and to let go of forcing an understanding (time will always tell--it's not like autism disappears!!!) In the 50's children with symptoms on the spectrum were thought to be the direct result of "refridgerator mother" syndrome----a cold and neglectful parenting style. This type of unenlightened thinking has no more use than many of the other treasures from the 50's --say like a kotex pad the size of a used diaper strapped to your body with a belt (seemed like the most up to date thinking on period maintenance, stylish even, reliable for sure right???? (cuz the tv says so...) Just imagine THAT diagnosis coming from the dr. who supposedly is up on the latest developments in medicine and ailments, and he IS saying YOU CAUSED THIS. That thinking is only a generation past us. Alot of us 30-somethings are dealing with practitioners, friends, and family who may believe it is simply a disipline issue, or the result of certain, or inconsistent parenting techniques. Through observation and time people may gain more of an understanding, and maybe abit of our job as these kids' parents and #1 advocates is to educate others and hope for their support, but more importantly seek out those who are already waiting with education and support for you. Labels, Schmabels, doesn't matter what diagnosis you have or don't, as long as whatever symptoms are present are assessed and addressed appropriately---Label brings some kind of closure for some, and certainly the insurance co's love labels, but we as parents need to know that the label does not dictate treatment, addressing symptoms does. Sorry to ramble, it's my first night/morning on circle of moms and i may be abit fiesty.

Michelle - posted on 01/29/2012

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My son was diagnosed when he was 5. I had just given birth to my 3rd child. I can tell you that it hasn't been easy and my mum always said that there was nothing wrong with my son. After all this time, she finally agrees that he needs his medication (ADHD). He has a double diagnosis, but he's my best friend now. He's 10 and I wouldn't trade him for any other child. My ex-in-laws never accepted my son's dissability. Result: every time he's with his dad and his nan calls, he picks up the phone and puts it down again. He doesn't want to talk to her. But we accepted him for how he is. And it's like i said, he's my best friend. He's the only one who gets a chance to hug me (apart from my husband). And at the moment, he's also playing football, and he's good at it. He's a defense player and i'm really, really proud of him. He's my beautiful boy.

And i have 2 boys and 1 girl. He's the middle one. But i love all my kids to bits, he's still the special one.

He really reads people. And he's the only one who feels my pain (i have a muscle disease, so i have a lot of headaches).



It's like someone here said: go with your instincts. Your family will either accept your child, or not. But they are still special. Just like my little boy.

Kate - posted on 01/24/2012

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Wow, that is so frustrating!! I really feel for you! My mum was very accepting of my son's diagnosis but i don't tell anyone else because I get that reaction too: "Pfff!! He is just a normal child - stop labeling him" ect but - you're right - they don't get to see the melt downs and the obsessive behaviour.

I find it really undermines my confidence as a mum and i need all the confidence i can get. that's why i choose to keep it to myself.

BTW - early diagnosis is essential. my son has come ahead in leaps and bounds because of it

Rachel - posted on 01/23/2012

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Hi. It may help to give them a list of autism traits (especially behavioural) written on a piece of paper from a legitamate website as many people don't know the traits. And explain it's neourilogical. many too are worried about the sigma, so you can tell them the postives of autism and tell them about famous people who were/are autistic eg. newton and einstein!! the previous generation find it very difficult to accept things that are out of the norm, so try to be understanding of this - their generation and the one before that were very quick to sweep it under the carpet. It's learned behaviour so try to be understanding of this as your trying to get your point accross. It is so much better when you have family support. don't give up!

Zee - posted on 01/17/2012

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Like you said, they are not around to see his everyday behaviour and certainly from what you say in this post, nothing in here suggests a discipline issue. Good grief. My suggestion for unsupportive family is to stop talking to them about your concerns. Still interact with them as a family but leave your son's issues out of it. If they persist, then stand your ground. You're the mom and know your kid best. If they are really offensive, then you may want to step back and keep your distance.



The next best thing is to educate yourself and surround yourself with people that ARE supportive. Hopefully your family will come around.



Best to you in getting a diagnosis.

Sarah - posted on 01/14/2012

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There is nothing wrong with wanting a solid answer. If the diagnosis is no then that gives you the ability to find other options for working with your child. Children develope differently so it might just mean that you might have to hold your son back in his school courses or place him in classes where the child to teacher ratio is smaller. You definately have so many options, and don't forget that you can always have a second opinion. One doctor's ruling does not mean that it is law.

Maria - posted on 01/14/2012

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Wow! Same story, different reason. I just did a search for "My family doesn't believe autism" And your post was the first thing I found.



In response to your situation: One of the problems is that everyone has an opinion on parenting. Even people who never had children feel free to weigh in.



As to your child's diagnosis, I would find it difficult to believe that you will not hear "Autism." My sons did many of the same things as did my sisters'. My sisters both have autistic children as well, totaling 6 out of 10 kids for all three of us.



My best advice is to persist. Keep going!



As to your son's "tantrums" (I'll call it acting out his frustrations) one thing you might try is giving him phrases in the situations that frustrate him most as if HE said it. "I'm so mad!" or "It doesn't work!" or "I'm scared of new people." When my one son couldn't express himself, this helped him. The more like his little voice, the better. It sounds funny to other people, but at this point, who really cares about "them." You need to help him feel heard or understood, even if it is only a little bit at a time.



Now to the lack of understanding in my life.



I just had a huge blow-up with one part of my family who just proclaimed that my twin 9 year-olds (both with an autism diagnosis since they were 4) were actually manipulative, devious and had a "serious problem" intentionally hurting animals.



Talk about left field! Here I thought that they understood what was going on with "the boys" as we call them. Instead my sister in law (who also believes that you should make children fear you) made that accusation and followed up stating that we were bad parents for not disciplining our children and implying that that is their only problem. Of course her only evidence that we were bad parents was that we no longer yell at them in her house (we stopped yelling altogether when they were about 3 or 4 when it no longer worked). When we discipline them now at 9, we explain what they did wrong and why it is a problem. If we feel that they understood what they were doing, then they are told of a consequence -- but at OUR house. I will say, it sometimes takes DAYS to find out what really happened, as one of our boys uses his "rolodex of phrases" that sometimes fit the situation and sometimes don't. This time was definitely a "don't."



I was completely blindsided by her comments, finding out that for years she felt I was "using their autism as a crutch." Explaining away their bad behavior instead of yelling at and disciplining them as she would. And she proved in further comments that she had no idea what autism was or how that knowledge would have countered her accusations. (In many ways my boys are innocent as lambs, not understanding other people's motivations or intentions.)



Let's just say that the situation went from bad to worst to laughable as she now is throwing anything she can to get us to respond.



By the way, that has been our response to our situation. But, she continues to reach into her bag of tricks. We keep waiting for her to get the idea that we will not be responding to her.



I will say that part of the problem for her is that my boys are rather high-functioning. She believes that THAT is proof that there is nothing wrong with them. Ignorance is still alive and well!



It concerns me enough in general to consider writing a "letter to the editor" of our newspaper. I am concerned that people will begin to have the same disdain for an autism diagnosis as they do an ADD/ADHD diagnosis. Some people believe that it is so over-diagnosed that it is not real. This is a tragedy for both ADD/ADHD and Autism. It is one we must fight with information.



But in the meantime, observe his behavior and try to understand what he is trying to "say" to you without words.

Shaz - posted on 01/07/2012

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ive worked in disabilities and that sounds like autism or at least a form of it to me.....
sounds to me like they are in denial. people tend to be like that when theyve never been around a person with a disability and will either ignore them or call it bad behaviour or etc.
those signs hes exibiting have nothing to do with lack of discipline or bad parenting...
It may be autism or it may be something else there are many different kinds that give similar problems. but its fantastic that you are trying to get him the help he needs now. Diagnosis is just half the battle once you have that you will be able to get him the help he needs....

Danielle - posted on 01/06/2012

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Hey!
Thank you all so much for your understanding, and encouragement.

Luckily, father-in-law is a General Practitioner and him and my mother-in-law agree that he should be checked. They are a big support with our son. They have offered to purchase us a weighted blanket, as well as help cover cost thats needed to get him the help he needs (depending on a diagnosis).

Recently, I sat my mother and sister down and pulled up information on PDD-NOS, and Autism.
I let them read it all through, and then sat with them and pointed out all the symptoms Jack has, and what examples in which he displayed them. I think at the end they had no choice but to admit that a diagnosis may be a possibility.

It helped to be able to talk to them about it, and made me feel a little relieved that they were at least humouring the idea.

Thanks so much ladies!

Bobbi-Jo - posted on 01/03/2012

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I have one person in my family that does not think there is anything different or wrong with my son and she thinks everyone else is the problem and that my son is practicly perfect. It's my mother in law. Anytime my son gets in trouble for something or does something he shouldn't she blames it on everyone else around him. She is in complete denial of his diagnosis (high functioning Autism, bi-polar, ADHD, and sensory intregration disorder). She has even gone as far as to blame his older and younger brother for starting or doing that which he has done. Basically in her eyes he can do no wrong. It has been so bad at times we have had to refuse him being able to go and visit her because of her outright denial. I've all but given up on her and actually no longer speak to her unless absolutely neccessary and my husband talks to her about the kids, etc. It's sad because she only lives an hour away and I would love for them to have a wonderful relationship with her, but it's just not in the cards.

Trish - posted on 01/02/2012

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this is been going on for 100 years. It's a MIRACLE when a family member is supportive.....

Lisa - posted on 12/30/2011

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"All behavior is communication." A child acts the way he does because he is trying to tell you something. Your autistic son may not talk, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have a lot to say (communicate).



My grandson is autistic. He is also sweet, loving, smart and kind.



Autism is a spectrum; if you've met one kid with autism, you've met only one kid with autism. With one out of 70 boys being autistic, you are going to find you are not alone in the boat. Autistic kids can be very different from each other, so you can't generalize. Sometimes mental retardation accompanies autism, but other autistic kids are exceptionally bright.



We were very fortunate to have gotten an early diagnosis. People said, "Why do you want to put a label on him?" We wanted to know what was going on, so we could get him the help he needed to be a happy, well-functioning person. Much help is available from the state or school system, but to get it, you must first have a diagnosis.



Early intervention is essential for kids with autism and other developmental delays; the sooner they receive help, the better they (and their parents and other family) can learn how to deal with their condition.



Our grandson had been blessed with wonderful therapists and the most amazing people at his Montessori preschool. He has gone from a child who had regressed in speech to one who talks and talks. He used to communicate only by screaming or scratching; now he is happy and has friends to play with. He is very bright and with the progress I've seen, I expect him to read earlier than his older brother did. He loves to go to Cub Scouts with his older brother and cousins, where he is welcomed and included, even though he is too young to be an actual Scout yet.



Some of his relatives have been very supportive, others have denied there being anything wrong. Don't pound your head against a brick wall by trying to explain things to the ones who won't listen. Talk with those who know and care, including those here and on other sites like www.autismspeaks.org

Babble.com has a list of sites you might want to check out at http://www.babble.com/Baby/baby-developm...



In conclusion: seek professional help for your son, talk with people who know about the problems he's dealing with, and look for support from other areas if your family can't provide it.



God bless you and your son, as well as all those on the Autism spectrum. They have much to teach all of us and we have so much to learn from them.

Melissa - posted on 12/30/2011

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I know how you feel. I have two with autism. My three yr old was just diagnosed in Oct. YOU know what is best for your child. You are around him the most and see him in situations that others dont. Sometimes I think just distancing you and your son from those that arent supportive is best.

Terri - posted on 12/30/2011

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I can see that you are concerned that he may have some autism spectrum that you may want to look into being Dx as early intervention has the best outcome.
First off; love your child whatever his Dx is and get the tools to help. "Punishing" him for who is is sounds like a reaction to the situation but not necessarily in the best interest of the child to deal with what is going on in your childs head and spirit. Love your child/ love yourself. If you need help to come to terms with whatever the reality is and stress of parenting, that is a secondary issue but also a priority and helpful to yourself and your child and whomever is in your circle of friends and family.
My daughter banged her head for 1.5 years and remember freaking out and as a Single Mother felt so helpless and had a very little support system. There are some online chats that help vent and hear others in the same situation, which is helpful if your family are not there to listen. Meanwhile get an evaluation and there are plenty of resources for early intervention. Ask your pediatrician where to start. Enjoy your child, they grow up so fast!

Vanessa - posted on 12/29/2011

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Focus your energy on your child who is having issues, not negative family members. In my oponion it sounds like your son might have ODD & a form of autism. It is a myth that children with ADHD are delayed- more so it is a label. They suggested putting my son is special ed. classes only due to the fact that he is ADHD, I said no way his I.Q. is abovt average and his grades were 85 and above. Even if you child is diagnoised with whatever he has, try not to label him. Trust me society will do that enough. Education is power, most people do not take the time to learn what they can about a delay or a form of disability. You said your son's speech is 1+ years behind & he was 3 years old that right there is proof that their is something off.
BY LAW each state has guidelines as far as a time line that THE STATE MUST evaluate & get the results back to you in. If you have not written a formal letter requesting your son be evaluated do so & get the letter stamped with a date. PA has a 60 day guideline- guess what it took 156 days to get my son's evaluation. And the only reason I got it was b/c I went to my town's school board meeting & waited until open mic at the end and stated how many days ago there were suppose to get the results back- got the letter eval. the next day in the mail. A mother knows best, dont let family get you more stressed or upset. I hope this helps.

Ruthie - posted on 12/27/2011

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Danielle in reading all of the wonderful replies that you've received, it is wonderful to know that you have people out here that care and understand, don't you think?

You follow your heart on what is best for your little one. If anyone knows their child best...it's their Mommy.

My 3 year old Precious Grandson was diagnosed with slight autism, after having cranial surgery, but I will say that he is the Best Child ever. He is Our Gift from God, just like your little one. Have him diagnosed and whatever the results are then take the bull by the horns and help him every step of the way. Reach out to others that are willing to listen, care and work with you.

Unfortunately, there's families out there that aren't willing to accept anything different. Let them know that you have everything under control and if they want to be a positive part of things that need to be done....then it's wonderful..if not..then don't exhaust yourself in trying to get them to understand, because they are going to believe what they want and you really don't have time for it.

We are here for you and your little one, Danielle. Big hugs to you both.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 12/24/2011

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Also, if it does end up that he is autistic, it would really help to have your family their to listen to the doctor about the diagnosis. Sometimes, if it is coming directly from a medical professional, it helps put things into perspective.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 12/24/2011

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I would give them literature on what autism is. Some people go into denial about things like this. They don't want to think anything is truly wrong, so they blame the way you parent. If you can, give them the literature, and leave it alone until you have your diagnosis. Ask them for help and support, but no more criticisms. That you are having a tough time, and you need your family behind you, not mocking you. That if it IS autism, you will all work with him together, and if it is not, you will go a different route.

Family support is vital for any success with child rearing. I am so sorry you are going through this with your family, but I honestly believe they are in denial that something could be wrong. Good luck on the testing, and let us know what happens.

Beth - posted on 12/23/2011

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Ignore your insensitive family and go with your gut feelings. Your Doctor knows best, he won't say he is autistic if he is not. Look for a support group to talk with about this. Search for others experiencing what you are. Best wishes for your little boy.

THERESA - posted on 12/23/2011

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I think you are feeling like nobody CARES.
You are having to be "the brave one" and it's a shame you have to go thru this ALONE!

Lorene - posted on 12/22/2011

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You are your childs advocat you as the parent should know your child better than anyone. I say this because I notice some delays with my child. Family told me all these things I should or should not do. But non of them were there to see or experienced what i have with my child. So i had testing done and after 3 years he is finally about to get the help he needs. I think that you should find a support group in your area. So that you can help each other.

Jennifer - posted on 12/21/2011

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I would simply stop mentioning it to them...if all it does is cause you stress, lean on those who are there for support and don't worry about what to say to others unless they ask of his well being. HUGSSSSSSS to you

Carol - posted on 12/21/2011

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Either tell them "STOP" as Christy suggested or just happily say, "He's fine, thank you."

Bonnie - posted on 12/21/2011

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hello, i am not saying disown the family ,and also like so many people or should i say woman with inlaws,sometimes they should take a step back and look at the situation a little better, it is about the child not trying to be always right and making him choose between you and his family ,i have been around and yes inlaws can be a pain,,,but daughter inlaws can be worse,stop the net picking and you all work together and older people believe in spanking,but that is your job to make sure they know how you feel about spanking,i have been babysitting for 40 years ,and there is a love tap to get there attention,but there is no good reason to spank a child ;i dont care who you are ,if you think that go take some parenting courses ,love will fix all ,omg they are children ,gods little angels,for god sakes be happy and love them,nanny

Kathy - posted on 12/21/2011

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Hang in there! I knew my son had some different behaviors early on, but I did not get the autism diagnosis (PDD-NOS) until 3rd grade. His dad and my mother-in-law think I am nuts and that I just spoiled him. I left his dad when my son was 5 (also had a 2 year old and 5 month old at the time). Life was hard... the tantrums and other issues that comes with an autistic child, and he was not diagnosed so I had no idea what was going on, and I had 2 younger ones still in diapers and was a newly single mom... and the dad was (still is) a jerk. The good news is, my son is now 20 (dad is still a jerk and still thinks that all Daniel's issues are totally my fault because I babied him) and in community college! He still has his struggles, but with early intervention, he has been very successful. My family (not the dad's side) is amazed with the mature young adult he is today. In summary -- do what you know is the right thing to do... go with you instincts. If you feel there is something not quite right, keep seeking answers. Regardless of a diagnosis of autism, you treat the behavior or issue. You help him learn the behaviors that he does not pick up on instintively due to the autism... work with him, ignore them and do what you feel in your heart to be the right thing. I did and I am very proud of where my son is today. It is hard, but the payoff is huge! Good luck!

Valencia - posted on 12/21/2011

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I say go with your instincts. Keep him in the educational programs. Keep notes on his behaviors. Have the test done at the appropriate time dr.s say. Give him a lot of love. I knew something was wrong with my daughter when she was in the 2 nd grade. I had her tested for everything and placed her in special educational programs. Her cognitive test were low but not low enough to get all the help needed. My family thought I was over reacting for having test done an for observing the behavior. Now my daughter is 19 with bi-polar n psychosis. My family now listens.

Bonnie - posted on 12/21/2011

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hi danielle,well to start off with it does sound like you are the only one in your family with a brain and saying that i would be very careful what you do until you figure out what is wrong it could be anything from allergys to autism so do what you have been doing and have lots of patience he is only 3 he has lots of time to catch up,and donot leave him with anybody that thinks he needs to be spanked that is a sad ,that people these days still want to spank kids with all the new things we have like time out,,just keep up the good work and stay as far away from your family as possilbe ,take care and good luck,god bless you ,nanny

Connie - posted on 12/21/2011

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WOW....I say follow your own intuition...a mother's instinct is never wrong!....Shame on your family for not listening and being supportive.

Elizabeth - posted on 12/21/2011

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ditto on everyone's answers!!! But i urge a little perspective on behalf of those who love your son but do not understand. I have seen that from grandparents of autistic kiddos and even from the parents themselves. Autism can feel like a defeating diagnosis to so many people that they will stay in denial as long as they can rather than accept it. They are not necessarily uncaring, but are so clueless as to how to handle an autistic child that they want to blame behavior on anything that might be fixable.

By all means try to weed out possibly constructive comments from those that are just stupid, but don't put yourself in a position to be offended and accept that should the autism diagnosis come to pass, that it may still take individuals who love your son some time to accept it. But once they do, I would bet that their tunes will change and that some may find at least a little more ability to be supportive.

to be clear - grandparents and aunts and uncles who truly love your son may warrant some understanding, idiot relatives and friends who just like to be negative do NOT. Do not look to anyone for support who cannot be supportive. find people who can.

Tammy - posted on 12/21/2011

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My son is three and a half and is about the same. But we were told by our doctor that as long as he recognizes that we are speaking and answers back, not to worry. But if you are on the lists to be evaluated, by all means, do it. If they don't want to help, too bad for them. They are the ones losing out.

Tracey - posted on 12/21/2011

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I was one of those "bad" family members when my nephew was young. He wasn't diagnosed until 7, and he was tall and appeared older than his age.



As it turned out for him, part of his problems *were* his parents' fault. He didn't talk until age 3, but that's largely because they were allowing his older sister, 7, to talk for him. Once she quit doing that, he started talking on his own pretty quickly. And that reduced some of his behavior, particularly meltdowns. This was discovered when they took him to a child psychologist who observed their family for a day.



But what it seemed like when he was little was that here was this obviously bright boy who was getting thrown out of daycares for biting the caregivers; having tantrums all the time; not listening to adults. And his parents *were* ignoring him, too. The autism diagnosis didn't even occur to anyone, even his parents. They even went to parenting classes, which did help reduce the sibling rivalry they were having. Their other very bright but neurotypical child was mean to her little brother before that.



But once he did have that diagnosis, it completely changed how everyone felt about him, including me. Suddenly a lot of things made sense. Once I understood what his struggles were, I could see how he was trying to work through them. He was getting help at school, too, and his parents went to some classes on how to deal with him and were really on top of it.



His mom told me later that she really wished they'd known earlier, when he was around 3, because so much of those several years could have been different.



Today, he's an honor student in the gifted program at his high school, doing college-level math and AP courses. If you would have told me then that the toddler who couldn't talk, and who screamed and bit people and threw himself on the ground all the time would be in this position, I would not have believed it. The whole family has been very proud of him for years.



Stick to your guns and get him diagnosed. It may turn your family around. If it doesn't, he doesn't need to be around people that disparage him.

[deleted account]

Why do you talk to these people? Just because you are related does not mean you are required to have them in your life. If you were to meet them on the street and have them say these things to you, what would you do? Would you would disregard them and move on? Or would you invite them to dinner to continue pleading your case? Your relatives are poison and they are adding no value to your life. There is no reason you have to include them in your life, or his. Stop calling, stop going to visit. If they call you and ask what's going on, tell them that since they've told you to stop talking about your son, you have decided to honor their wishes, that from now on, anything going on with you is none of their business.

I hope the doctors are able to give you a good diagnosis and the help your son may need.

Meredyth - posted on 12/21/2011

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You were not put on this planet to change anyone, not their mind so stop trying. You need tO focus your energy on your son and you, only. I waisted 15 years trying to please my mom, to me and my sons detriment. I wasted valuable years that I can never get back because I didn't listed to myself about MY child.
You sound like a wonderful mother and NO, there is no reason to hit a kid. I had people tell me the same thing and it is crazy. Good luck and God bless

Joanne - posted on 12/20/2011

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The last thing you need is family members giving you a hard time about something that is already hard. Leave them out of this issue and surround yourself with those who understand and can provide positive support. I do not have an autistic child but have taught children with autism. YOU are your child's advocate. Tell your naysayers to go pound tar and do what YOU need to do for YOUR child. God bless and all will be fine. :)

Jennifer - posted on 12/20/2011

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Find supporting friends or a group and talk to them. Most doctors would have a list of groups for things like this to help the children.



I have a nephew that has autism and is also bipolar so it's not easy for her either. Having someone to talk to will help you deal with any issues you have and maybe you can help others too still learning. However, if your son is anything like my nephew I'm sure he is a very sweet boy and only wants to please you. My nephew cries when he does see you have a bandaid and says sorry you got hurt and tries to make sure you are ok and other things like that. We all know the signs of a fit getting ready to start and we try to control the situation as quickly as possible just to keep peace for him.



Hopefully one day soon your family will realize that he is a great kid and be more active in his life. So sad to say your in laws are the ones missing out. Keep talking with your husband and try to stay on the same page with eachother so things go smoothly. Your son will grow and learn fast soon. Autistic children are very smart and learn quickly. My nephew has a very good memory and can quote you from quite a while back or something that his teacher taught him. He is now 9 years old and he truely loves school and his friends.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 12/20/2011

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Oh, bless you! No matter what, you can come on here and vent, or whatever you need. I bet your sis is younger than you as well...sounds like it from the way she reacts. I know the most difficult thing is remembering NOT to mention anything. The way I figure it, if they don't have the compassion to be supportive, they don't deserve to be kept in the loop.

You and your boy are in my prayers, dear!

Danielle - posted on 12/20/2011

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Thank you all for your responses.

It is always a struggle to talk with them. It is apparent that he is delayed, so it comes up often.



They just assume he is slow.

It is the hardest with my sister, because she doesn't have children ( yet she tries to conceive with whatever boyfriend she has at the time), and is so stubborn. She has her "level 2" in (what I call) babysitting. She is the 'I know better than you' type of person.

Iridescent - posted on 12/19/2011

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Right now, let it go. Find some friends to confide in that are supportive. My family didn't believe me either prior to the official diagnosis for both our autistic kids, but they were somewhat more supportive when they realized we got the "label" to provide therapy to help them, not to get attention and not to harm them. Our oldest is now 12 and is believed to be going into remission! Insane, because when he was diagnosed that had never even been heard of! There is hope. Some people, you'll never be able to make understand and will never accept it. You just have to let those ones go.

Christy - posted on 12/19/2011

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Well as it has been going on anyway, keep him from them and deal with it yourself. Stop talking about your son to them (pertaining to his Autism, that is), and if THEY ask about his behavior, tell them "stop" and "there's nothing here you need to worry about". If they keep pressing, LEAVE. Some people have no clue!

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