Tuesday, November 25, 2008

About that...

I realize that I was a little vague in my post about Jack's diagnosis of Asperger's and his starting preschool. So, I will try to be a little more specific this time. :)

We first started noticing that things were "different" about Jack around the time that he turned 2. He screamed a lot when he couldn't effectively communicate and he was a very difficult toddler. He often played by himself and was rarely interested in what other kids were doing. A lot of things just seemed "off." But, we decided to wait until he was 3 to pursue anything - just to see if we were dealing with normal toddler "quirks" or something else.

By the time he was 3, things were getting worse. He has a large vocabulary, but doesn't quite know how to use it correctly. He says things that don't make sense. For instance, I will ask him "Jack, is that a good cookie?" And he will say, "Did you wait for the bus today?" Almost everything he responds with is a question. He has a very difficult time answering questions. If someone asks him "What is your favorite color/cartoon/toy?" He has no idea what to say back to them. He has a lot of sensory problems. He hates trying new things. We have to listen to/watch the same songs and movies over and over and over and over again. If we try to introduce something new to the mix, we encounter huge tantrums and fights.

Why haven't I mentioned anything on the blog? Well, I like to keep things somewhat light on the blog. A lot of family reads the blog and I don't want to take up a lot of time venting about problems we're having with Jack and what a difficult child he is. Plus, people have a lot of opinions about Autism and "labeling." We've encountered several negative attitudes about Jack going through evaluations and being put in preschool. So, I try to be careful about who we talk to and what we share. This is a time when we need encouragement, not criticism.

To an adult that doesn't spend much time with Jack, he appears to be a pretty normal kid. He laughs and is silly and says a lot of words. He is very comfortable around adults. He says "hi" and smiles. But, if you spend some good quality time with him, you can see that some things just don't "click" with him. So, we're working on that. School has been fabulous. He is doing so well and is really enjoying his time there. We've already noticed some progress with his communication...that has been very encouraging.

Sorry if this post is a little choppy. I'm trying to organize my thoughts and put out as much information as I can...but I feel like I'm not doing too well with that! :)

If you'd like more information on Autism/Asperger's, here are some great links...

http://www.autism-society.org/site/PageServer?pagename=life_aspergers

http://www.autismspeaks.org/navigating/index.php

http://maapservices.org/Publications/Stephen_Bauer_Article.asp

1 comment:

Kelly said...

My brother-in-law has Asperger's as well as some other mental health issues. It's a very hard thing for people who aren't around all of the time to understand. It's good to see that school is helping Jack.