HELP FOR PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH ASPERGER'S & HIGH-FUNCTIONING AUTISM

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Aspergers and HFA Kids: How to Have Meltdown-Free Haircuts

So your Aspergers or high-functioning autistic child refuses to let you cut his hair. Even the mention of it causes him to start to meltdown. He’s starting to look like a girl. Are you a bit desperate at this point. Need some advice?

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32 comments:

Anonymous said...

Our Aspie also hated haircuts and it was a huge ordeal every time. We finally came up with the idea to let him pick his haircut out of a book. He loves books and this seemed to work for him. we have also taken him to a kids hair salon the last few times and that helps as well. He can watch a movie or play a video game while they cut his hair. Only problem was he "couldn't" leave until he finished his game level! Wish we had found this place years ago.

Anonymous said...

My son is 7 yrs old and still has problems with hair cuts. We have found that the hair cut places that are just for kids work well. Watching a movie or tv show while his hair is getting cut makes a big difference. Also he Hates when any of the hair gets on him so I stay nearby to help wipe off hair. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

my 7yr old was really great at getting his haircut until some thoughtless hairdresser somehow scratched him on his chest when she was cutting his hair, so for months he'd only allow my mum to cut his hair it was only last week when he was finally happy to walk back into the hairdressers so he got a reward afterwards

Anonymous said...

My son too is not the biggest fan now and use to scream. Just keep re assuring him through with it cause it has to be done. It is something he will have deal with. It gets better over time. My son has come along way and he is 8 now :)

Anonymous said...

To be fair, so what if he looks like a girl - these kids put up with enough prejudice, i was actually really sad when my boys wanted their hair cut. But it cam from each of them. (incidently people still say my youngest looks like a girl, even with short hair) I for one couldn't give a damn what other's opinions are, of the way he looks. I say if he doesn't want it cut, it's up to him!!!

Anonymous said...

Bring him to a kids cutting place where he can sit on a fun animal chair and watch tv. Before hand, discuss with him what reward he would like and while he's getting his hair cut, keep reminding him of his reward. Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

My fourteen year old son in the last year has been okay with haircuts. After trying everything we could think of we decided to just let his hair grow. He thought he had won the battle until the hair started tickling his ears. At that point it was summer and I asked him if he would like to give his dad a haircut with the clippers. He was hesitant because of the noise they made. After a few minutes of watching he decided to take over. After we were finished his dad's haircut his father cut our son's hair with the same clippers. It might not have been the most fashionable haircut but it helped him to start to get over his fear of the clippers and having a haircut.

Anonymous said...

Let him grow it! Why should we assume boys need short hair?

Anonymous said...

Pick your battles! I opted to let my son grow his hair but had rules - it had to be cleaned (what that looks like for his hair type and activities) - it had to be combed at least once per day and again if there was something special (ex picture day or wedding/family event) - OR it was going to be cut. I reminded him, and only twice pulled out the scissors but never had to cut it. It got long. his dad hated it (reward for my son who found that funny) he got called a girl which didn't bother him and he eventually decided to get it cut - when he was ready. HIDDEN VALUES: He had better hygiene in his teen years (YEA!!!) , and was more cooperative over all because he felt a part of decision process.

Anonymous said...

My 8 year old has a problem with the sound of the clippers. We either ask them to cut with scissors only or bring an iPod with ear buds. He also doesn't like the hair all over him, so we just ask that they are extra careful & brush it off often.

Anonymous said...

Let it ride, and look on the bright side, my son wants a red mohawk and a spiked bracelet because he saw a goth dude in a kilt at the gas station and has not forgotten that! But he will go to the bb shop thank God! Like Carol said pick your battles.

Anonymous said...

Our 12 year old always hated haircuts and it was a huge ordeal every time he had to get one. A few years ago I tried letting him look through the books at the shop and he picked out his own hair style and for the first time sit still throughout the entire haircut. We have continued this and he has been so much better. We also tried the kids salon. He got to play a video game while getting a haircut, but then didn't want to leave until he finished his level! You know how that goes!

Anonymous said...

My son, 10 years, ASD, has never gone to the hair salon, I have always cut it. I finally figured out how to do it without a lot of moving, and carrying on. I put him in front of computer, or handed him an ipod to focus on. It still can take a lot of convincing, and he has to come to it himself, but it works now. And, I am getting pretty good at it.

Anonymous said...

My son, 10 years, ASD, has never gone to the hair salon, I have always cut it. I finally figured out how to do it without a lot of moving, and carrying on. I put him in front of computer, or handed him an ipod to focus on. It still can take a lot of convincing, and he has to come to it himself, but it works now. And, I am getting pretty good at it.

Anonymous said...

Let it ride, and look on the bright side, my son wants a red mohawk and a spiked bracelet because he saw a goth dude in a kilt at the gas station and has not forgotten that! But he will go to the bb shop thank God! Like Carol said pick your battles.

Anonymous said...

My 11yr old has always had a problem with hair cuts. So I bought clippers and cut his hair myself do that we could stop when need be. My 6 yr old who doesn't have asbergers doesn't like hair cuts either. My brother knows how to cut hair now do he usually does it and he's the uncle so he understands his nephew and is very patient. There is a lot of crying, getting out of the chair, stomping, yelling about having hair on him and in his mouth. I tried rewards and once we start it goes out the window with him he doesn't care about rewards anymore. Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

Give him the clippers and let him do a small portion himself. My son was the same way. It'd take 5 people to hold him for a haircut. After I let him try it himself we've never had another issue.

Anonymous said...

I have a daughter with aspergers & while on a course I was speaking 2 a lady who had a child with autism, her child had the same problem, over the course of a few weeks she introduced a social sorry about going to the hairdressers & what would happen & that the hair will grow back, also she found her child was worried they would be 'losing apart of them self's' she told her child a story about what would happen to the hair (her story was the birds take it to make nests for baby chicks) in the weeks she introduced the social story she also let her child go to the hairdressers & watch her get her hair cut a couple of times to see the process & to explore the shop until they were comfortable with it, it took time but now that child is happy to get a hair cut.
4 hours ago · Like

Anonymous said...

Yep we have had difficulties at times too. Im just letting him grow it atm...its winter anyway....and hes happy.

Anonymous said...

I hate to admit that I just bribed my 11 year old with McDonald's to get his cut the other day.

Anonymous said...

My son, 10 years, ASD, has never gone to the hair salon, I have always cut it. I finally figured out how to do it without a lot of moving, and carrying on. I put him in front of computer, or handed him an ipod to focus on. It still can take a lot of convincing, and he has to come to it himself, but it works now. And, I am getting pretty good at it.

Anonymous said...

My son was like this for a while. I had to take him to the kids haircut places that charge >a lot< for them to give him toys to keep him busy while he is there. He's gotten better though and now I am taking him to the regular places. I just warn them ahead of time that he is aspergers and they usually give me someone who is very experienced with kids. He fidgets a lot still and I have had to walk him through it a bit.

Anonymous said...

My 13 year old hates hair cuts too. He has Albert Eintsein hair. At some point I had to let him start making his own decision about haircuts. So long as he showers and washes it I am fine??? I just don't want to see it down to his waist.

Anonymous said...

My 12 yr old has a mullet ... His choice.... He used to freak if he could pull it with his fingers and I was always buzzing it. Now he likes the feeling of it long... And he has beautiful curls and can pull off the look... I told him the back can stay long as long as it is clean and I tiddy up the front once a month for him... Being a hairdresser myself really helped ....I am the only one who has ever cut his hair.... I have so many other battles with all 3 of my kids that I have learned what ones are important to fight and what ones aren't.

Anonymous said...

Social stories and experience. Start with a story about a boy getting a haircut. You may have to read it together a few times before he is ready. Then take him to watch someone he loves and trusts get a haircut and let him experience it up close, watching. It might take a bit.

Anonymous said...

My 11 yr aspergers boy says bribe him with ice cream as he is having his hair cut.

Anonymous said...

I bought clippers and learned to cut my son's hair myself. It is still difficult for him at 6 yrs. old but he muscles through it for a special treat like fresh cookies or a sucker.
22 hours ago · Like

Anonymous said...

I have exactly the same for my 4yr old. I got clippers (which he hates) but I have asked if he would like to do it himself (I obviously watch and make sure his hair is cut nicely) and the last time he eventually had a few go's and that seemed to help a little bit. Its still horrendous anytime we need to cut his hair. I am considering growing it because that means one less anxiety he has to cope with.

Anonymous said...

I just want to say, just keep trying if you can. Go back to the same haircutting place so that it is a familiar place, and go to the same hair dresser so she is familiar. I agree with the bribing. My son would tell you that it works too because it gives them something else to think about instead of thinking of the hair cut (he is 12 now). Also, social stories are a MUST for the younger ones!! We read them over and over and I made sure to explain exactly what would happen, why, and what happened to the hair. My son was freaked out because he thought they were cutting off part of his body when they cut off his hair. He has come a long way!

crystal pugh said...

I've been a kids stylist since 1993...currently i have my own business going into schools and homes in VA doing family haircuts. A large % of my clients have at least one child on the spectrum. When calling a salon or kids salon ask for someone who specifically knows how to deal with kids with sensory disorders. Don't assume that all kids stylist know(believe me, i mangaged 2 childrens salons and it's amazing how many non kid people worked for the companys). Good luck to you all and if anyone wants to ask questions or if in Northern VA have a home haircut visit my email is youthsalonspugh@yahoo.com
my site is down right now but it will be up again soon www.YouthSalons.com

S. Ricklefs said...

Why do you want him to cut his hair?
Everybody has his own personal image and we parents need to accompany and escort our children to grow up. They are not our own, only our kids. :)
It doesn't hurt anybody, so why?
The Autist ( and everybody in this world) is different anyway, so let him express himself!
My boy wanted his hair growing, when he was so little as your son was.
It was difficult, cause I couldn't use a hairslide, you can use if you have a girl, but somehow it worked out, and after it was long enough, it also looked very nice.
Then, there came a time, he wanted to get his hair real short, with styling gel.
I was watching all these kids at school, everybody had different haircuts, longer, shorter, with or without gel. So, why not?
You can't please people anyway!
I regret, that I didn't listen to him, when he was three years old and told me that he wants to have long hair and let it first happen, when he was already sixth year old.
My Boy is my boy, no matter what people think. He is first place!
Now, he is nearly 18 years old, he had different styles in the meantime and now letting it grow again.
Everybody is searching his own image, who he is and his own way, so let him try and help him, I would say.
My best wishes <3

S. Ricklefs said...

Why do you want him to cut his hair?
Everybody has his own personal image and we parents need to accompany and escort our children to grow up. They are not our own, only our kids. :)
It doesn't hurt anybody, so why?
The Autist ( and everybody in this world) is different anyway, so let him express himself!
My boy wanted his hair growing, when he was so little as your son was.
It was difficult, cause I couldn't use a hairslide, you can use if you have a girl, but somehow it worked out, and after it was long enough, it also looked very nice.
Then, there came a time, he wanted to get his hair real short, with styling gel.
I was watching all these kids at school, everybody had different haircuts, longer, shorter, with or without gel. So, why not?
You can't please people anyway!
I regret, that I didn't listen to him, when he was three years old and told me that he wants to have long hair and let it first happen, when he was already sixth year old.
My Boy is my boy, no matter what people think. He is first place!
Now, he is nearly 18 years old, he had different styles in the meantime and now letting it grow again.
Everybody is searching his own image, who he is and his own way, so let him try and help him, I would say.
My best wishes <3

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