Hi everybody, my name is Matt. After reading questions and answers to Mark Hutten, I was so sad to hear all the problems parents are having. I know I’m only 10 but I decided to interview my parents what they thought about my aspergers and how they helped me so that I could share with you:
Me: When did you first think I was different?
My parents: We noticed when you were about 3 years old, when you decided to stop eating.
Me: What did you do?
My parents: Well we went to the pediatrician who told us this was normal, and not to force you to eat, that you would eat when you decided to. Well that was a mistake still to this day you won’t touch a lot of foods.
Me: What did you think when the psychologist told you I had aspergers?
My parents: We were torn. We were happy in a way that we finally found out why you were acting differently, but sad thinking how can we help you?
Me: I don’t understand?
My parents: Every parent’s first impulse is thinking “what did I do wrong?” When we found out it was aspergers, and it was not our fault, this made us feel a little better. But now knowing that you have Aspergers Syndrome it made us feel helpless thinking how can we help you. Matthew, every parent wants to help his or her child live a happy life.
Me: Is there anything you think helped me get this far?
My parents: Yes. I made sure ever since you started school I asked you four simple questions. Tell me something good, something bad, something happy something sad. This made you talk about your day and we could elaborate on a specific topic, which was most important to you. Now every day we talk about all different topics.
Me: Yes we still do it today, but I call it debriefing now.
Me: How did you get me to try new things?
My parents: The one that best works for you is reward and consequence. Do you remember when you would not ride your bike for the whole summer?
My parents: Well it was not until I purchased a computer game and told you, that you could not play it until you rode your bike. You learned to ride a bike in 2 hours.
Me: Is there anything else you think that helps me?
My parents: Matthew it’s all trial and error. There have been times a strategy may work but the next day fails completely. We find its one step forward and 2 steps back. I get told a lot of the time that I’m a pessimist.
Me: What does that mean?
My parents: It means I look for the worst things in life. I do this to try to look ahead on what problems could arise for you. Everything I try to teach you now is not to learn for today but 2 years from now. I have always tried to teach you some problem solving of situations that may arise as you get older. Hopefully with constant repetition when this time comes, it would have sunk in and you would be ready.
Me: Are you tired of having a son with aspergers?
My parents: If you mean tired as exhausted, there are times, but I get the same exhaustion from telling your brother to pick up his clothes. Matt I’m a mom. I’m tired all the time. It goes with the territory. If you mean am I tired of you… NEVER. I wanted two boys and I was blessed with two wonderful boys, so to that answer no!!!! You are a wonderful son with so many gifts to offer and I love you and will always love you.
My Aspergers Child: Highly Praised Program for Preventing Meltdowns and Tantrums at Home and in the Classroom