My Child has autism and laughs at other children when they fall down or miss the ball in sports

Clare - posted on 02/20/2015 ( 5 moms have responded )

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I have a child with autism, and he is always in trouble at school for laughing at others, however i was lead to believe that a child with Autism cannot help this as they do not understand there emotions or others, so therefore i think the school should be trying to educate him not punish him, as it is something he cannot help and needs help to understand others and himself, equally so i feel the school should be preparing the other children to accept people with differences am i wrong to expect this of the school. My Son is becoming very confused as he cannot see what he is doing is wrong which is causing him to be very withdrawn.

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Sharon - posted on 02/20/2015

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my son used to laugh when another child/person got hurt..... you just have to explain over and over that its not a nice thing to do and asking if they are ok is much better..... then reward him with lots of praise and enthusiasm when he manages to show even a small amount of empathy..... it does take longer than with children that aren't on the ASD spectrum but its not impossible and although I don't agree with 'punishment' for him laughing at others hurt, you MUST make it very clear that you do not approve of him laughing....and get the school to work with you.... consistency from both sides.... its your responsibility as well as theirs
my son (has micro deletion 15Q11.2, social communication disorder, PPS) is now a very caring child so there is hope always.... xx

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 02/20/2015

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YOU have to work with him, to explain emotional cues, empathy, etc. Autistic children can successfully integrate, with the right teaching. Yes, it takes a bit longer, but you have to be the one willing to work on it.

He IS being rude, and right now, he doesn't understand that, nor does he understand why he's in trouble. You need to consistently explain to him how his actions are perceived, and how this particular trait can hurt the feelings of others. He'll understand that, because he does understand when HIS feelings are hurt.

Now, the school needs to be on the same page, and enforcing the same teaching. Rather than punishment, his aide needs to be explaining to him "Johnny, when someone falls down it hurts their body, and when you laugh at that, it hurts their feelings. Can you see that Susie is upset? Can you help me ask her if she's ok?" (for example)

It almost sounds as if, on the one hand, you understand that, but on the other, you're angry because your kid is being punished...when the issue is something that is crossing the home/school boundary and needs to be addressed appropriately on both sides.

Clare - posted on 02/20/2015

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Hi

I understand that, however children with Autism do not understand what is rude and what is acceptable they have no social q they do not understand happy, sad,angry funny, in themselves let alone others, I think that punishing them for it is wrong as they do not get why they are being punished, however working with them to explain how others feel when they do that will reinforce emotions, after all you cannot punish my daughter just because she is in a wheelchair as it is not something she can help, equally so my son has no emotions or understanding of them, due to his autism and only by working with a child who has these issues is how you will resolve it. surely this is the way to go with children as reacting in an angry way to negative behaviour will only reinforce negativity

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