*Encouragement is the best medicine to give someone. If I were to pick any gift to have in helping others, that would be the one*

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Reasons to Decrease Homework for Aspergers

Chaz relaxing at Grandma's house
You know, sometimes I think homework can be an overkill.  My son wasn't coming home till 4pm every day from school.  Then he had to do homework for up to an hour.  He had about an hour of playtime till dinner, then chores, then reading time, then bedtime.  An hour of playtime is not a lot for a kid in the elementary years.  Add Aspergers in the mix and you can get some meltdowns.  It was in the middle of the school year that I finally told Chaz not to worry about his homework.  He's gone 9 hours a day as it is so I knew he was in serious need of downtime to unwind and be refreshed for the next day.  I had to tell the school when they called that it was no longer going to be expected of him.  I've known some parents to get it written into their child's IEP plan so that is definitely my aim.  Does it affect his grades?  I'm sure it does some.  Instead of being an A+ student, he now gets A's and B's.  Is that a good trade?  I'll take it.  Less meltdowns, less stress, happier Chaz, peaceful house.  I've seen such a huge change in Chaz since taking away that added stress.  I figure that if they have my kids for 9 hours a day and can't get in enough teaching time, then that's something they need to work on.  No, I don't think the answer is taking away playtime where kids run off their energy.  Of course I trust his teachers and principal.  They are great people.  But I'm Chaz's mom and ultimately responsible for his well being all together.

One day I had enough when I was seeing meltdowns increasing since he was getting more homework.  Then I noticed how little of unwinding time he had.  I know some might feel it's an extreme approach but seeing Chaz maintain good grades and be a lot more relaxed was definitely worth it.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Reason's for Aspergers Meltdowns

Question: Hey Asperger moms, do any of your kids who have Aspergers have meltdowns easily or get frustrated easily over little things?

Answer: BIG TIME. It gets less with age but still happens. Because of Chaz, I've learned to talk really calm when he gets upset. If I match his anxiety, it doesn't help at all.  When around other kids, it's best to take them to a different area and help them calm down.  It's difficult for Aspergers kids to calm themselves down.  Imagine a tight ball that needs unwinding.  Also, when they get their hopes up about something. They take a yes or maybe as ABSOLUTE.  Yesterday Chaz's friend told him he would probably come over to our house by 4pm.  Chaz started pacing by 1pm and constantly watched the cloth.  4pm came and went and Chaz broke down.  He cried and cried.  I felt so bad for him and held him in my arms talking calmly to him.  Besides promises, because of their sensory overload at times, it can make them have meltdowns easier.  From the feel of their clothes, to the sounds around them, it can cause meltdowns  A good book to read is Sensitive Sam because it explains this exact issue.  When it gets too noisy I can see panic in Chaz's eyes at times.  I make sure to keep his earmuffs on me at all times whether it's at the mall, big events, or even just in our family van.  Most of all, when your child does have meltdowns, don't match their anxiety because it doesn't help the situation  Remember that they can't help it and need someone to help calm them back down.  We've taught Chaz to use his words instead of his body to hit.  It's better to say "I'm angry!" then to go and hit a sibling or kick a toy.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Taylor's Story: What is it Like Being on the Autism Spectrum?

This movie is really powerful in helping someone understand Aspergers Syndrome.  At age 2, Taylor was diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum.  At age 17 she is a top student, athlete, and creative artist.  What is interesting to me is how she got there.  Someone had to step in and intervene.  Her mom sought interventions in Taylor's early years.

She gives her own experiences and examples such as:

1. Troubles with communicating
2. How's I'm different today
3. Tactile sensitivities
4. Sudden sounds
5. Associations
6. The great disconnect
7. Advice to parents from an Aspergers
8. Explains negative behavior in Aspergers kids
9. Stresses the importance of opening doors while your kid is young.
10. What she likes about her life with Aspergers

Taylor just wants people to know there is hope.  Start helping them when they are young.  Check out the video and let me know what you think!  :)

You can visit her website HERE.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Understanding Aspergers Weaknesses and Finding Solutions

I have a 5 year old son recently diagnosed with Aspergers as well as ADHD. Is there anyone out there who has this and can tell me ANYTHING about how to approach him, understand his thought process, or anything else you can think of?  Thank you! I want to be the best mom to him, but because I had no clue what was going on with him, I fear I haven't. I just want to be the mom he needs me to be. Thanks again. ♥

My thoughts: 
I'm so glad you wrote me because I have the perfect resource for you that I've found really helpful.  Since posting it, so many have wrote me and commented on how they loved it's simplicity.  It's actually called "Explaining Aspergers to Your Child" but it's a list of how to recognize Aspergers.  This list also told me his sensitivities and so I could recognize them when I see it.  Sometimes when AS kids act out, while others may see a naughty kid, we know it also could be sensory overload.  When Chaz would break down I would just hold him to me, cover his ears with my arms and tell him everything is going to be okay over and over again till he calmed down.  Think of a really tight ball that needs to be unwound.  I could feel his body loosen up as he relaxed.  I also learned to ignore the looks when out in public.  I can't walk around saying over and over "Oh, my son is freaking out because he has Aspergers."  I learned to not worry so much what others think.    

For example:
  • may be sensitive to touch or loud noise
If you know that he is sensitive to sound, maybe investing in a good pair of earmuffs that can be carried in your purse for when he needs it will help.  The earmuffs I show on the left are the exact ones I have for my daughter and they also have a blue version for boys.  I can't believe how wonderful these are and they have never broken with excessive use.
  • often do not like changes in school, work, and home life routines
His teacher was able to create a visual schedule for Chaz to cross off as each activity was finished in the classroom. It listed subjects, lunch, recess, more subjects, etc.  They were in order so Chaz always knew what to expect next.  He loves his routine and it really helped to find a teacher that would be willing to accommodate that.

Anyway, here is the whole list.  I think it will really help.  I know you know what Aspergers is but this list will also help know his weaknesses.  Knowing what they struggle with can help us find solutions.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Aspergers Kids Longing for Acceptance

My son came home excitedly last week and showed me a note from the special needs director.

Chaz said, "Oh mom, can I please be in the class with Mr. D next year?  It's a class with kids of all ages and I really want to go."

I was confused about what class he's talking about.  Then it dawned on me that he's talking about being in a special needs class.  My heart sank.

Charles (left) with his brother and dad
He's done so well in a regular classroom and getting A's and B's.  Why on earth would he need to go back to a special needs classroom?  Why is this teacher talking to him about it when I've heard nothing about it first? That last time he was in a special needs room he regressed big time.  Aspergers kids can sometimes copy the behavior of other kids.  When Chaz is around younger kids, he acts younger.  When he's around kids his age or older he acts more mature.  This could affect his learning.  If he's getting good grades, why does he need to get extra help?  Of course there are different levels of special needs rooms and this sounds higher functioning than the one he was in before.

I brought Chaz with me on an errand to talk about it some more without the other kids around.  I asked him:

"Chaz, why do you want to be in this special needs classroom when you're doing so well in a regular classroom?"

He said:"Mom, because the kids in the special needs room love me and I love them."

Then I realized it was about acceptance.  He may be getting good grades in his classroom but he has very little friends if any at all.  He said that whenever he passes the special needs room, the kids are all excited to see him.  This wasn't about the grades, it was about the need for friends and acceptance.

I have a lot to think about.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

When Dad Has Hard Time Accepting Aspergers Diagnosis

How do I convince her father that it is okay she has this diagnosis?  It doesn't change who she is, it just helps us understand her.

My Thoughts:
My husband was really, really sad when he found out. He just pictured a harsh future but now he sees it was the best thing we could ever do. Feel free to share experiences from others to him.  Because we helped Chaz back when he first started school, because of the interventions, he is now a well behaved, straight A student. He has his down times but for the most part you would be shocked how far he's come. I've even written about his early days on my blog and how incredibly hard it was. By you helping your daughter now, you're giving her a better future. Hugs. I totally understand where you're at. 

Did you Know?
When children are uncomfortable with the fabric, seams, or style of their clothing, they can act out and become frustrated or stressed.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

When Was Asperger's Syndrome Discovered?

Every wonder where the term Asperger or Asperger's Syndrome came from?  I've been asked this question recently.  Although I knew it was from a Doctor, I thought it'd be neat to do some research of my own.

Some of the information I found is from the Wikipedia and you can see full page HERE.

Asperger performing a psychological
test on a child at the University Pediatric
Clinic, Vienna,c. 1940.
Hans Asperger published a definition of Asperger syndrome in 1944 that was nearly identical with the definition that a Russian neurologist Ssucharewa (Груня Ефимовна Сухарева, born 1891) had published already in 1926. (Interesting)    Hans Asperger identified in four boys a pattern of behavior and abilities that he called "autistic psychopathy". The pattern included
  • a lack of empathy 
  • little ability to form friendships 
  • one-sided conversations 
  • intense absorption in a special interest 
  • clumsy movements 

Asperger called children with AS "little professors" because of their ability to talk about their favorite subject in great detail. It is commonly said that the paper was based on only four boys. However, Dr. Günter Krämer, of Zürich, who knew Asperger, states that it "was based on investigations of more than 400 children."

Asperger was convinced that many of the children he identified as having autistic symptoms would use their special talents in adulthood. He followed one, Fritz V., into adulthood. Fritz V. became a professor of astronomy and solved an error in Newton’s work he originally noticed as a child. Asperger’s positive outlook contrasts strikingly with Leo Kanner's description of autism, of which Asperger's syndrome is often considered to be a high-functioning form. In his 1944 paper, as Dr. Uta Frith translated it from the German in 1991, Asperger wrote:

We are convinced, then, that autistic people have their place in the organism of the social community. They fulfil their role well, perhaps better than anyone else could, and we are talking of people who as children had the greatest difficulties and caused untold worries to their care-givers.

Near the end of World War II, Asperger opened a school for children with autistic psychopathy, with Sister Victorine Zak. The school was bombed towards the end of the war, Sister Victorine was killed, the school was destroyed and much of Asperger's early work was lost.

As a child, Asperger himself appeared to have exhibited features of the condition subsequently named after him. He was described as a lonely and remote child, who had difficulty making friends. He was talented in language; in particular he was interested in the Austrian poet Franz Grillparzer, whose poetry he would frequently quote to his uninterested classmates. He also liked to quote himself and often referred to himself from a third-person perspective.

Did you know?
Asperger's birthday, February 18, was declared International Asperger's Day by Aspergers Services Australia and is observed by various autism-related organizations.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Help! My Son Refuses to Get His First Hair Cut!


Not able to get his haircut yet!!! 6 1/2 yr old. I went over all details, he agreed, as soon as we got in the building he ran back out the door! Came back in, held him, we saw a 10yo n 1yo get a haircut. He agreed again, sat on chair, when they put cape, pulled off n ran out again!! I plan going back to sit n observe for several days. Any suggestions?

My Thoughts:

Since it's his first haircut, ask him of something that he's really, really wanted for some time.  You might even buy it first to show him.  Tell him that the prize is his if he gets his hair "trimmed".  Some kids are scared of the word "hairCUT" because when they think of "cut" they think of pain.  If he is scared of the sound of a shaver you  might even get him some earplugs for his first time.  Then sit next to him holding his hand and tell him he's doing great.  If he is absolutely terrified to enter a salon, there are some companies that will come to you so he can have his hair trimmed in the comfort of his own home.  Also, it helps to stick with the same person that trimmed his hair each time because of the trust that is built.  I hope this helps for his first time!  There are also some really fun hair salons for kids that you might find in your area!  Like Snip Its for kids.

What are your ideas?  Would love to hear!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Autistic Man has Trouble with the National Anthem

But Then Something Amazing Happens

Doesn't this video touch your heart?  Instead of making fun of someone for making a mistake or being nervous, it's so much better to lift them up like this amazing crowd did.  Wouldn't it have been neat to be there?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

One Way to Prevent Meltdowns

I was visiting a friend's blog (pay a visit if you like!) and reading about the importance of sleep.  I'm surprised I've touched so little on this topic.  Especially since this is a huge issue with Chaz.  I have talked about how hard it is for him to sleep and some solutions.

How much do kids need to sleep?

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends school-age children get 10-11 hours of sleep each night and that kids ages 5 to 12 need 10 to 11 hours of sleep each night. The quality of sleep is as important as the quantity, playing its essential role in nervous system development.  Each child is unique and individual variation occurs. When I was teaching, I always felt sorry for the students who seemed too tired at school because they were less mentally alert, more inattentive, unable to concentrate,  easily distracted and often the ones with a short temper getting them into trouble with peers.
Children should have a sufficient amount and quality of sleep to grow, develop, and function well.  With our busy lives and, in many cases two working parents, naps are missed, bedtimes are late, mornings start earlier and nights are hectic with getting everything done to start the next day. Naps play a large role in the healthy sleep of children and should be planned for each day. You may also be surprised to find that a well-rested child is easier to put to bed.
Need more convincing? A study group found that children with higher IQs — in every age group studied — slept longer. 

Of course this is important for any kid and that's why we have them in bed by 8:30pm every night.  I wasn't raised that way because my parents were very involved in ministries at church.  We were late nighters and I got used to it but I do remember many times having a hard time concentrating in school because I was so tired.  I was also extremely hyperactive and  most teachers groaned when they found out I was on their classroom list each year.  I still have a hard time sitting down for long.  :)  It benefits me now though because I need that energy.  But I also make sure I get 8-9 hours of sleep every night.

Imagine for a kid how much more sleep is important.  I do notice there are a lot less meltdowns.  Just because Chaz is 10 years old doesn't mean he doesn't have meltdowns anymore.  He very  much does and is emotionally immature compared to his classmates.  He's even 1 year older than all of them since I held him back a year.  

I've said before in previous posts that Chaz has a hard time falling asleep and is known to lie away for over an hour.  A musician came to the rescue and offered to send me a relaxing CD that he had put together.  He has great reviews from other parents of Aspergers kids as well.  Since having this cd, the time it takes for him to fall asleep is getting shorter.

By the way, I've had to borrow it a few times as well because the music is just so relaxing and beautiful to play in the house.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

An Aspergers Child Gave Me My Wings

I talked with Chaz's bus driver yesterday and he is just really hating the bus. The kids all beg him for his ear muffs and he gets pressured out of them.  Cheryl goes out of her way to bring a DVD player for Chaz so he can keep occupied on the bus.  She is just amazing and we're so grateful for her.  She's always keeps communication with me so we can figure out what will work for him.

Back when we got a new bus driver, I was dealing with a lot with Chaz.  Yes, we had now found a great school but now Chaz was getting kicked off the bus again.  The bus is incredibly loud and Chaz would go haywire.  Even hanging out of the window, crawling under the seats, screaming at the top of his lungs while covering his ears.  When a new bus driver pulled up one day I thought, "Oh great, I have to start all over explaining things."

Till I saw her wings.  She was my driver with angel wings.  All I had to say was "Chaz has Aspergers Syndrome" and her response was "So do 2 of my sons."

What?? I know my mouth dropped open.  She assured me she understood and would work with him.  Since then she has done whatever it takes to protect him, keep him happy, all while bringing him home safely.

What do I mean when I say angel wings?  When someone goes out of their way to work with your Aspergers child, keep communication with you, stays positive, and has results....they are like a guardian angel.  Chaz flourishes because of angels like these.

Seriously, I've thought of having those shirts made that have angel wings printed on the back and something that says,

 "An Aspergers child gave me my wings."

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day with a Special Message!

My mom and I
To all you moms of Aspergers kids I just want to give a special shout out.

Happy Mother's Day!!!

It's already a huge job being a mother.  But you guys are special because you are moms to kids that at times can require a special kind of love and need an extra dose of patience.  You go out of your way to meet their needs and search for ways to help them and enrich their lives.  It goes beyond diapers changing, feeding, and providing clothing.  The hours you spend meeting with teachers, doctors, the principal, dealing with family that may not understand, etc.

You are a special mom that deserves a special shout out.  I know because I've been there.  The questions, tears, uncertainty, and the constant searching for answers.  I have an Aspergers son that has taught me a special kind love and patience I never knew was needed.  Not only did I become a mom 10 years ago but I had no idea the journey I was about to embark on.  That journey I love to share with you.  In the process, I've been able to meet some pretty special moms out there.

Happy Mother's Day to all you Aspergers Moms out there!!!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Advocating for Your Aspergers Kid

Chaz (standing) with his younger brother Ryan
Chaz has gone through several school sadly because we couldn't find teachers that would work with him.

His first school was a traditional academy.  He was kicked out after 2 days because he bit his teacher and kicked another the next day.

His second school was the one that alerted me to get him tested for Aspergers.  Since we were getting a house built quite far from there, we knew we weren't going to stay there long.  In fact, they requested he attend a certain school that could help him.  It was a self contained classroom.  It was THE WORST year we ever experienced.  The teacher insisted that I get him on meds and said Aspergers doesn't exist.  They called me almost every day about behavior issues and when they have to call, you are then required to come in and sign a paper.  I came in an awful lot that year.  I was shocked by behaviors that I didn't see at home such as swearing and throwing tables and chairs in the classroom.  Often he was pinned on the floor by workers.

(Chaz is sitting next to me as I write and he said "Oh my gosh, I did that?" He's gotta a big smile on his face reading over my shoulder. He doesn't have memory of any of this.)

The third school is where I met the angel teacher.  She saw the weariness in my eyes and assured me that she worked with Aspergers kids for 3 years in New York.  For the first time I felt some hope.  I felt like weeping in her arms.  She didn't call me every day to come into the school. She helped my son go from rolling on the floor to sitting calmly in his chair.  Sigh.  She's my angel and I'm forever grateful to her.  Unfortunately once he was out of her grade and she left the school, our experience turned sour.  

I homeschooled him for a year and he did really well. We were not able to find any schools with high ratings around our new house that was built. 

I was excited when I finally discovered one next to me that was hidden. It had high ratings so we thought we'd give it a try. I enrolled Chaz with my 2 other boys.  I was ecstatic that is was only a couple of blocks away from our house.  It soon turned sour when I discovered that Chaz was getting bullied very badly and the teacher was no different.  I had a bad feeling of the place after a few months and I was treated by the staff as if I had no rights to ask any questions.  I asked to visit his classroom and they said I had to make an appointment for 3 weeks in advance.  Chaz's behavior regressed since being in this school and I was back to where we started.  He was not learning and was getting bruises from throwing his body around.  Then the school decided to call CPS on us without ever asking us any questions.  3 months of investigations later, the state immensely apologized and said the school did not follow procedure.  They apologized over and over and said we had a great family and that they could offer us services because of everything they put us through.  I said "no thank you".  I wanted to just forget about all of it.  It was a very scary time for us.  To top it all off, we did not find out till the end of the year that Chaz did not get to sit in on the classroom.  His desk was placed out in the hallway every single day and was forced to just listen to his teacher rather than be a part of the group. I was horrified!  A year of school and this was hidden from me. My son never told me but that explained why he was being called a freak and kids refused to play with him.  My heart was utterly broken for my son.  

Once again I pulled him out and homeschooled him.  I would rather keep him at home than make him go through that ever again.  His self esteem was at an all time low and he threatened to hurt himself constantly.  He was crying a lot.  After a year of homeschooling, his confidence built back up, it was time to start looking for a school that would work with him and he was in need of an updated IEP plan.  

A friend alerted me to a Charter school that wasn't very close but a very good school.  THIS TIME, with bad experiences under my belt, I was gonna be the one to ask them questions.  I asked for a meeting with them.  I asked them what they could do for my son.  After all, he is on an IEP plan and they would be getting extra funding. I knew they were in need of enrollments since they were a charter school.  I told them that if they could work with me, communicate with me, have meetings on progress for Chaz, that I would enroll 4 of my children there.  The teachers were my angels.  I told the teacher it would be tough at first and that Chaz is gonna test her.  He given a teacher that was willing to learn.  It was a rough start as she had never worked with an Aspergers kid. But she would call me on a daily basis if needed and ask questions.  She was wonderful.  I could tell at times she was overwhelmed but she never gave up on my son.

AND...I had finally learned how to advocate for my Aspergers son.  Enough was enough and it took till he was 9 years old to figure that out.  I wish in the beginning I knew what I know now but it's never too late.  I didn't know of Aspergers groups or websites.  I just read and read and read to learn as much as possible.  Experiences taught me the most.  

Don't be afraid to stand with confidence in the school for your child.  Yes, they do get extra funding if your child is on an IEP plan so they need to actually work with your child and you.  I've finally learned not to be intimidated.  I know what my son needs.  Since I've learned to do this, Chaz got the teacher he needed, his confidence is soaring, and his grades are excelling.  I realized that all those times before I had been bullied and because I didn't have the knowledge or support I needed.  

But I want you to know that you do have support.  Many of us moms are learning to stand up and and fight for what our kids need.  You are not alone.  If you don't know where to start, feel free to write on our Aspergers Moms wall on Facebook.  You will find that there are many moms that have fought that fight or are going through it right now.  

If you want to learn how to be your child's advocate, here is an excellent article on the topic:

Advocating for Your Aspergers Kid

Friday, May 6, 2011

Weighted Vest Review

Sometimes I so wish I had known about products that can help Aspergers kids way back in the day when Chaz was still throwing tables and chairs in his classroom. This is one of them because I remember him telling me how he just wanted me to hold him and I even remember him trying to explain to me a feeling about floating that made him uncomfortable.  It's not too late to try this but I want to share with you.  They of course sell these in smaller sizes for younger Aspergers kids.

Fun and Function sent me a fur weighted vest for Chaz to try and to also share with you!  Well, I love it.  More importantly, so does Chaz. Chaz has never heard of a weighted vest so when it came in the mail and I pulled it out for him to see, he right away wanted to put it on.That was a relief to me because it means it doesn't make him feel self conscious.  Actually, you would never know the weights were in it just by looking at it.

The funny part is when Chaz put it on.  He said "Wow, I really like the vest but man, why is it so heavy?"  LOL. But he loves it and even asked if he could wear it at night.  He said it just comforted him and made him feel better.  Hmmm...I guess that's where those weighted blankets would come in so I'm gonna look into that next.  Anyway, I wanted to share with you the success of it.  He will be taking it with him to his classroom.

Here is the product info about it.

Calming, soothing, sooo soft and a fashion statement! Our new vest features shoulder and trunk weights on the inside and silky soft navy fur on the outside! So comfortable and fashionable that kids don't want to take them off! The 1/2 pound removable shoulder weights (two included) are perfect for deep therapeutic compression at the shoulder joints, providing proprioception. In addition to the shoulder weights the vest includes two 1/2 pound and four 1/4 pound weights that can be added to the interior vest pockets. Machine washable. Weights included (total 3 lbs). Sized by age. Small-Ages 2-4 (WR3457), Medium-Ages 5-6 (WR3459), Large-Ages 7-9 (WR3461), X-Large Ages 10-12 (WR3603).

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Aspergers Symptoms in Infants, Toddlers, and Older Children

Chaz in blue shirt
Looking back I now see the signs that Chaz had Aspergers.  However,  since he was my first I didn't really see it till I had 2 more sons.  Seeing the difference in behavior made me start to wonder.  Once he started Kindergarten, it was blaringly obvious.  Except for the fact that I never heard of Aspergers.  I knew something was up and that he had ADHD.  It was a school counselor that hesitantly brought it to my attention.  Thank God he put down his worries of offending me and gave me a paper on the signs of Aspergers.  He said it with a kind heart and didn't shove it on me.  

At the time, I was desperate and looking for answers.  Why couldn't my son be like the other kids and sit in his chair?  Why did he roll all over the floor, under the desks, bite his teacher, kick another, and then have to run straight into a door and split his head completely open?  Why was my son kicked out after 2 days of Kindergarten?  Was he that bad?  Was I that bad of a mom?  I should have seen it coming.  The first day I proudly walked into Kindergarten and sat him down, I looked around the classroom.  White walls, round tables.  Ha.  Chaz wasn't gonna stay in this chair.  He looked at me frightened.  I thought, "There is nooo way he's gonna just sit in that chair."  4 schools later, we finally found a teacher that could work with him.  Said she completely understood him and did whatever it took to make school work for him.  She is my angel and if I only knew where she was I would send her flowers, gift cards, presents, give her a hug, send her family Christmas cards.  She is the one that taught me it was okay to ask for what we needed.  It's okay to expect the school to work with Chaz and learn what works.  

Thank you, Ms. Phillips.  Wherever you are, you are my angel.


An article I found:

Aspergers, considered to be a mild form of autism, consists of problems with socializing and communication with others. While the average age of diagnosis of Aspergers in kids is around age 7 to 9, recent research regarding early warnings signs may enable clinicians to diagnosis prior to 12 months.

Aspergers Symptoms in Infants—
Many infants and toddlers exhibit signs or symptoms of Aspergers from time to time; however, this may reflect normal youngster behavior. Failure to meet expected developmental milestones doesn’t necessarily reflect a symptom of Aspergers. With these facts in mind, symptoms of Aspergers may be detected in infancy

Want to read about signs in infants, Toddlers, and older children?  Since I did not write this article, I'd rather refer you to site.  Really good information!

Click here: Aspergers Symptoms in Infants, Toddlers, and Older Children

Pssst, I'm in need of votes.  just by clicking on button you are voting! :D

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Pulling Together

Be the rainbow in someone else's cloud
Who knew facebook could be such a goldmine for connecting and bringing people together that have one something in common?  If you feel you are alone and need other parents to connect with, AspergerMoms is a place where moms can connect that have walked this path ahead of us or are just beginning. Feel free to write and ask any questions. :)

Discussions on AspergerMoms

Would you like to join?  Here are some we are having right now!

1. getting a diagnosis- we were diagnosed so long ago and i don't feel it was comprehensive. Where/who do you go to ( from your 
experiences) for a comprehensive DX?

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2. Once Diagnosed, do you have a case manager? Or is this our role, to keep track, reevaluate therapies?

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3. Anyone else experiencing this...Hard to get services b/c of academic abilities, yet struggling socially in regular( or advanced) classes (middle school)?

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4. I know this is religion, and a hot button topic..but something we are struggling with. The Bar Mitzvah and the year of BarMitzvahs. Everything about it makes my son uncomfortable, yet his is in 5 months and he's been invited to some already. He also can't handle attending any. (we tried) Experiences from the group?

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5.  I'm really having a tough time getting my 8yr old w/ Aspergers to keep his hands OFF everyone. I explain and remind a zillion times a day. Ideas?

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Monday, May 2, 2011

Keeping Promises

Chaz was chosen amongst a few others to represent his school in a field day with other schools.  Wow!  He just couldn't believe it.  I'm so proud of Chaz.  Out of all the kids, my Aspergers son was picked. That means he's been participating well in school and really trying.

It was on Saturday and since Chaz said the bus would be coming by our house to pick him up, I was in no rush Friday night to go to bed early.  In fact, I was having fun doing some research and listening to music.  Before I knew it, it was 4:30am.  I was exhausted but happy to have that quiet time.  We had everything set out for Chaz to get on the bus by 7am.  I wake up in the morning and as I reread the paper, the bus wasn't coming to our house. We were supposed to meet the bus at the school that is kind of far.  Chaz and I had both misunderstood.  Not only that, it was too late to meet the bus.  It already left.  Chaz was in tears and his heart looked so broken.  It was an hour drive away to where the event was held and by the time I could call the coach, the were already signing in.  It was a long drive but I couldn't see letting Chaz down like that.  At this point, I didn't care about the inconvenience.  We told our family of 8 to pack up, we were heading out!  It's not easy getting a big family ready and it takes a bit of time.  Chaz was pacing back and forth the whole time worried he was gonna miss events. I headed out on 2 hours of sleep but just loaded up on some coffee on the way.  By the time we got there, he missed an event but was gonna be there all day so he was very happy to still make it.

Some people would say, "Oh, he's just a kid, he'll get over it." or "They'll be other times."  But it's more than that.  When someone has an achievement and it's thrown down like it doesn't matter, in the future they might think, "What does it matter any way?  It's not important to them.  Why should I try?"

I know it was just a mistake on my part.  But I wanted him to know he's not an inconvenience to me.  When a kid gets their heart set on something, it's hard to get over.


When an Aspergers kid gets their heart set on something and they've been pacing, hand wringing, talking about it almost every waking moment, setting out their clothes 3 days in advance.... can you imagine why there would be a flowing of tears?  When you're constantly mocked, called a freak, have little or no friends... being told you're gonna go and represent your school and you've been chosen out of all the other kids, it's a BIG DEAL.

Seeing him run out on that field and happily go to the first event made my heart smile.  I kept my promise and my boy knows he matters.  I love that boy.

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