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

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The "Out-of-Control" Child on the Autism Spectrum

Moms and dads often ask how to deal with and help the high functioning autistic youngster that seems to be out of control. How do you control or manage the kid that intimidates, hits, punches and seems to enjoy torturing their siblings? What do you do with the kid that argues, is defiant, and refuses to participate or follow directions can be difficult to live with and can create disharmony within the household?

CLICK HERE for the full article...

Aspergers and HFA Children with Anger Problems

Many moms and dads recognize that their Aspergers or high functioning autistic (HFA) child has a problem with anger management. They feel their child needs to develop anger management skills, or needs to find some kind of anger management counseling that will help them get along better in life -- in school, at work, with a parent, with siblings, and others. In some cases, professionals may have diagnosed the Aspergers or HFA child with a “conduct disorder”, or “oppositional defiant disorder”.

Types of Anger—

The natural response to fear is to fight it or avoid it. When confronted with fear, animals and humans both go into “fight or flight”, “violence or silence”, or “gun or run”. They engage in the conflict, or they withdraw. Though many moms and dads may equate “child anger management” with the “fight-violence-gun,” uncontrollable rage, parents must also recognize that anger may be “turned inwards” in the “flight-silence-run” mode, which can often times be as dangerous, if not more so, than expressed anger.

Generally, anger falls into three main categories: 1) Fight, 2) Flight, or 3) Pretend to be “Flighting”, while finding indirect ways to Fight. Most children on the autism spectrum who have anger management problems will go to either extreme of fight or flight. They tend to become aggressive, mean, and hostile, or they withdraw into themselves and become extremely silent, silently stubborn, and depressed.

==> How To Prevent Meltdowns and Tantrums In Children With High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's

“The Fighters”: Child Anger Turned to Aggression—

“The fighters” are pretty simple to recognize. They are aggressive. Many times, the characteristics of Aspergers and HFA children with anger management problems are included in the professional diagnosis for “Conduct Disorder” or an “Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)”. Some of the warning signs in the following list are taken from the criteria for professional diagnosis. Others are additional common signs of anger management problems for children that are “fighters”.
  • Destroys property
  • Difficulty accepting a “No” answer
  • Does not follow rules
  • Frequently vocalizes anger
  • Furious temper
  • Has left holes in walls and doors from violent outbursts
  • Initiates fights with others
  • Loud and yelling
  • Makes threats
  • Often demeans or swears directly to parent or others in authority positions
  • Often feels rules are “stupid”, or don’t apply
  • Openly and often defiant of requests
  • Physically cruel to animals
  • Physically cruel to people
  • Seems to have “emotional diarrhea”, and “lets it all out, all the time”
  • Seriously violates rules (at home, in school, or society in general)
  • Uncontrollable fits of rage (usually these “temper tantrums” are used as threats to get their way)

This list does not list every possible warning sign for the “fighters”. The child “Fighters” have anger management problems when the problems are creating an unsafe situation for themselves, for others, or for property around them. If animals and/or people are the focus of the anger and aggression, the problem is extremely critical to address. Aspergers and HFA teenagers who have abused animals or people as kids are at a higher risk of becoming a threat to society than those who have not. Where these warning signs seem to be a part of daily life, intervention is strongly suggested. Intervention can be through anger management counseling, an anger management program, or a program dedicated and experienced in working with special needs children with anger management problems.

“The Flighters”: Child Anger Turned to Passive Responses—

The “Flighters” can also be fairly simple to recognize. They are passive. They do not fight back when confronted. Many of their characteristics may coincide with the diagnosis of depression. Some of these warning signs are taken from the professional diagnosis for depression, and others are taken from learning, observations and experience.
  • Deals with difficult emotions by “cutting” the emotions off
  • Does not engage in much conversation
  • Extremely passive, to the point of getting “walked over” by others
  • Has difficulty expressing emotions
  • Holds anger in, then “blows up” suddenly and violently
  • May blame self unnecessarily
  • May have few friends
  • May punch holes in walls or kick doors, when “the last straw drops”
  • May be seen as a “loner”
  • May simply “go along” with whatever, even when it is a poor decision
  • Physical problems may include upset stomach, muscle aches, backaches, frequent headaches, or other physical symptoms from “holding it in”.
  • Seems “emotionally constipated”
  • Seems depressed
  • Seems to have very little emotion
  • Seems to hold anger in
  • Seems withdrawn
  • Tends to spend a lot of time alone
The “flighters” are in danger of destroying themselves emotionally from within. The “flighters” are like a balloon being constantly blown into, with no release valve. When they explode, their anger may be violent, and may lead to harming themselves, harming others, or destroying property. Internalized anger is potentially as destructive to a child as aggressive anger.

==> How To Prevent Meltdowns and Tantrums In Children With High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's

“The Pretenders”: Child Anger Silently Planning Revenge—

Perhaps the most difficult to detect, the “Pretenders” follow an anger style that seems to be calm on the surface, but is raging, scheming, and planning underneath. They are passive-aggressive. These children do not directly confront the anger as a “Fighter” would do. They will be passive and appear to accept what is said, and then will disregard what is said to do their own thing. They are sneaky. Often, they may be unnoticed. While they are giving a person a hug, they are also stabbing them in the back (so to speak). They lack the courage to be direct, and perfect the skills to be deceitful. They know where the “back door” to revenge is, and will use it often.

They will give the appearance of a “Flighter”. The list of “flighter” characteristics also applies to them. Additional items to look for with “Pretenders” are on the following list.
  • Inconsistency between what is said and what is done
  • May be very good at blaming others
  • May not admit mistakes
  • Often gets caught in lies
  • Sneaky behaviors
  • Tends to avoid direct conflict, while creating problems in other areas
  • Tends to sabotage

These warning signs are a few to look for the “Pretenders”. Aspergers and HFA children who try to manage their anger through the “Pretender” style are as potentially dangerous to others and themselves as the other style. Moms and dads cannot underestimate the “Pretender” style because the danger does not seem to be that of the aggressive “Fighter”.

As has been shown, anger comes in three main styles -- Fighter, Flighter, and Pretender -- and each style has the potential to create big problems for the Aspergers or HFA child, families, and society in general. This post has offered specific warning signs that may indicate if a child on the spectrum has an anger management problem more significant than what is to normally be expected. When necessary, professional and competent intervention is recommended.

==> More parenting strategies for dealing with tantrums and anger control problems can be found here...


More resources for parents of children and teens with High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's:

==> How To Prevent Meltdowns and Tantrums In Children With High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's

==> Parenting System that Significantly Reduces Defiant Behavior in Teens with Aspergers and High-Functioning Autism

==> Launching Adult Children with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism: Guide for Parents Who Want to Promote Self-Reliance

==> Teaching Social Skills and Emotion Management to Children and Teens with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism

==> Parenting Children and Teens with High-Functioning Autism: Comprehensive Handbook

==> Unraveling The Mystery Behind Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism: Audio Book

==> Highly Effective Research-Based Parenting Strategies for Children with Asperger's and High-Functioning Autism

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10 comments:


Anonymous said...

    I have a question, is a child with asperger's able to kill an animal, such as a cat????
    he was asked if it bothered him and he laughed and said, it made it little sister cry. And would they do these things because of jealousy of the sibling?
    Thank you for your response.

Anonymous said...

    if this were my child I would bring him in to his psychologist. I don't think its typical for any child of any ability to be harming animals...without a proper evaluation there is no way anyone here can answer this question...we would all be speculating. Ask a professional.

Anonymous said...

    RUN to a professional, and if you don't think you found the right one for your child and family, keep looking. Abuse to animals is very serious, and often does not stop there. At this point, you might not know if your child did this out of frustration, anger, etc, or if he enjoys watching reactions (without any real malintent). Whatever the case, intervention is needed ASAP. If you are truly unsure he did it, you are at least acknowledging the possibility, so please don't get scared and back off. Even if he is not the culprit here, his reaction to the situation is not one you should be comfortable with. Blessings and good luck.

Anonymous said...

    I agree with the above comments. I have an Asperger's son who has plenty of anger/aggressiveness issues, but he is always kind and loving to animals. He also gets very irritated with his younger siblings but is never cruel (he might yell at them, etc. if they are "bugging" him). I can't imagine him purposely doing something to make someone cry (unintentionally maybe). I think your child might have something going on besides Asperger's. Early intervention can help--I'd get started quickly!

Anonymous said...

    I certainly wouldn't call this typical aspie behavior... I agree with Megan, RUN to a professional.

    Anonymous said...

    I found that although my daughter does not appear to connect with people emotionally, inherently she displays a lot of compassion for others. It might be an “Aspie like” trait to say something to a person unwittingly hurting the person’s feelings however I also found that strong emotional responses such as crying, laughing or yelling make an immediate impression on my daughter. If your son is displaying pleasure in seeing such a negative response that is something entirely different. Trait’s of Asperger’s is that the person does not identify with others feelings and/or does not know how to respond. Your son had a pleasurable response. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

    cruelty to animals is a MAJOR red flag, part of the homicidal triad. RUN to a psychologist!!!
 
Anonymous said...

    Did any of you even read the article that proceeds the comments? Hostility toward animals is a common problem with Aspie's, especially those who are "fighters". If you have an Aspie child, you should already be seeing a professional, so that's not the issue. The issue is understanding -- REALLY understanding -- the challenges your child is facing so that you can help him respond appropriately. To the OP: Whether your child killed the cat or not doesn't have to be determined. If he is a Pretender, he may pretend he did it even if he didn't. If he is a Fighter, maybe he did. Whatever. The point now is to give him every possible advantage by educating yourself and then teaching him HOW to better respond to his complex emotions. He doesn't feel or think the way you feel or think; don't expect him to. Ever. But DO expect him to LEARN appropriate, safe modes of expression. It takes time, patience, and persistence. In the meantime, don't add pets to your household. Your child needs CONSTANT supervision, and may always need it. My son turned 21 today, and I still spend 99% of my time "dealing" with the issues that result from being the parent of an Aspie. It's a commitment unlike anything you could ever even imagine, so buck up, educate yourself, and get down to the hard job of teaching this child what he needs to learn to survive in our cruel world. And DON'T rely on message boards as your source of information. Rely on the experts.

   Anonymous said...

    I actually am the one with AS and I was just looking at websites to better understand myself and my behaviors especially when I was little. I am a girl with AS who is now in her teenage years but when I was younger I was defiantly both a "fighter" and a " pretender". I still am in some ways but I have found that my temper is getting better as I am getting older.

    Anonymous said...

    I have a 15 year old with aspirers and lately he has been very fascinated with poronography. He ordered over $500 with of porno on his cell phone ( which has since been taken away) and ordered $600 of porno movies on my tv. Last night we got home and he had tries to rent another porno and he I told him no that is no acceptable and he hit me in the cheat very hard and left a bruise. I don't know what to do for him.

Aspergers Children Who Are Physically Abused

Question

My asperger son is almost 16. He doesn't live with me. He's told me on numerous occasions that he's being physically abused. When I've reported it, they either accuse me of coaching him, or accuse him of lying, or of not being able to get him to focus enough to report the abuse. Years ago I did get one report of abuse substantiated, (because of bruises) however, nothing was done about it, and my son is still ignored. If someone could please help me to get help for my son, or just help my son, I would greatly appreciated it. I love him, and I want him to be safe and happy. He doesn't deserve abuse just because he isn't like other kids.

Answer

In the USA, an estimated 906,000 kids are victims of abuse & neglect every year, making abuse as common as it is shocking. Whether the abuse is physical, emotional, sexual, or neglect, the scars can be deep and long-lasting, often leading to future abuse. You can learn the signs and symptoms of abuse and help break the cycle, finding out where to get help for the kids and their caregivers.

Facts about abuse and neglect—

How could anyone abuse a defenseless child? Most of us can’t imagine what would make an adult abuse a child. The worse the behavior is, the more unimaginable it seems. Yet sadly, abuse is much more common than you might think. Abuse cuts across social classes and all ethnicities. And the abuse overwhelmingly is at the hands of those who are supposed to be protecting the child- the parents.

What is abuse?

Abuse happens in many different ways, but the result is the same- serious physical or emotional harm. Physical or sexual abuse may be the most striking types of abuse, since they often unfortunately leave physical evidence behind. However, emotional abuse and neglect are serious types of abuse that are often more subtle and difficult to spot. Child neglect is the most common type of abuse.

How can abuse happen?

There are many complicated factors that lead to abuse. Risk factors for abuse include:
  • Alcohol or drug abuse. Alcohol and drug abuse lead to serious lapses in judgment. They can interfere with impulse control making emotional and physical abuse more likely. Due to impairment caused by being intoxicated, alcohol and drug abuse frequently lead to child neglect.
  • Domestic violence. Witnessing domestic violence in the home, as well as the chaos and instability that is the result, is emotional abuse to a child. Frequently domestic violence will escalate to physical violence against the child as well.
  • History of abuse. Unfortunately, the patterns we learn in childhood are often what we use as parents. Without treatment and insight, sadly, the cycle of abuse often continues.
  • Stress and lack of support. Parenting can be a very time intensive, difficult job. Moms and dads caring for kids without support from family, friends or the community can be under a lot of stress. Teen parents often struggle with the maturity and patience needed to be a parent. Caring for a child with a disability, special needs or difficult behaviors is also a challenge. Caregivers who are under financial or relationship stress are at risk as well.

The lasting effects of abuse—

All types of abuse and neglect leave lasting scars. Some of these scars might be physical, but emotional scarring has long lasting effects throughout life, damaging a child’s sense of self and ability to have healthy relationships.

You can make a difference—

One of the most painful effects of abuse is its tendency to repeat itself. One of every three abused or neglected kids will grow up to become an abusive parent. You may be reluctant to interfere in someone’s family, but you can make a huge difference in a child’s life if you do. The earlier abused kids get help, the greater chance they have to heal from their abuse and not perpetuate the cycle.

Physical abuse: Warning signs and how to help—

Many physically abusive parents and caregivers insist that their actions are simply forms of discipline, ways to make kids learn to behave. But there’s a big difference between giving an unmanageable youngster a swat on the backside and twisting the child’s arm until it breaks. Physical abuse can include striking a youngster with the hand, fist, or foot or with an object, burning, shaking, pushing, or throwing a child; pinching or biting the child, pulling a youngster by the hair or cutting off a child’s air. Another form of abuse involving babies is shaken baby syndrome, in which a frustrated caregiver shakes a baby roughly to make the baby stop crying, causing brain damage that often leads to severe neurological problems and even death.

Warning signs of physical abuse—
  • Behavioral signs. Other times, signs of physical abuse may be more subtle. The youngster may be fearful, shy away from touch or appear to be afraid to go home. A child’s clothing may be inappropriate for the weather, such as heavy, long sleeved pants and shirts on hot days.
  • Caregiver signs. Physically abusive caregivers may display anger management issues and excessive need for control. Their explanation of the injury might not ring true, or may be different from an older child’s description of the injury.
  • Physical signs. Sometimes physical abuse has clear warning signs, such as unexplained bruises, welts, or cuts. While all kids will take a tumble now and then, look for age-inappropriate injuries, injuries that appear to have a pattern such as marks from a hand or belt, or a pattern of severe injuries.

Is physical punishment the same as physical abuse?

Physical punishment, the use of physical force with the intent of inflicting bodily pain, but not injury, for the purpose of correction or control, used to be a very common form of discipline. Most of us know it as spanking or paddling. Many of us may feel we were spanked as kids without damage to body or psyche. The widespread use of physical punishment, however, doesn’t necessarily make it a good idea. The level of force used by an angry or frustrated parent can easily get out of hand and lead to injury. Even if it doesn’t, what a youngster learns from being hit as punishment is less about why conduct is right or wrong than about behaving well — or hiding bad behavior — out of fear of being hit.

Emotional abuse—

“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me”. This old saying could not be farther from the truth. Emotional abuse may seem invisible. However, because emotional abuse involves behavior that interferes with a child’s mental health or social development, the effects can be extremely damaging and may even leave deeper lifelong psychological scars than physical abuse.

Emotional abuse takes many forms, in words and in actions.

Words. Examples of how words can hurt include constant belittling, shaming, and humiliating a child, calling names and making negative comparisons to others, or constantly telling a youngster he or she is “no good," "worthless," "bad," or "a mistake." How the words are spoken can be terrifying to a youngster as well, such as yelling, threatening, or bullying.

Actions. Basic food and shelter may be provided, but withholding love and affection can have devastating effects on a child. Examples include ignoring or rejecting a child, giving him or her the silent treatment. Another strong component of emotional abuse is exposing the youngster to inappropriate situations or behavior. Especially damaging is witnessing acts that cause a feeling of helplessness and horror, such as in domestic violence or watching another sibling or pet be abused.

Signs of emotional abuse—

Behavioral signs. Since emotional abuse does not leave concrete marks, the effects may be harder to detect. Is the youngster excessively shy, fearful or afraid of doing something wrong? Behavioral extremes may also be a clue. A youngster may be constantly trying to parent other kids for example, or on the opposite side exhibit antisocial behavior such as uncontrolled aggression. Look for inappropriate age behaviors as well, such as an older youngster exhibiting behaviors more commonly found in younger kids.

Caregiver signs. Does a caregiver seem unusually harsh and critical of a child, belittling and shaming him or her in front of others? Has the caregiver shown anger or issues with control in other areas? A caregiver may also seem strangely unconcerned with a child’s welfare or performance. Keep in mind that there might not be immediate caregiver signs. Tragically, many emotionally abusive caregivers can present a kind outside face to the world, making the abuse of the youngster all the more confusing and scary.

Sexual abuse—

Sexual abuse, defined as any sexual act between an adult and a child, has components of both physical and emotional abuse. Sexual abuse can be physical, such as inappropriate fondling, touching and actual sexual penetration. It can also be emotionally abusive, as in cases where a youngster is forced to undress or exposing a youngster to adult sexuality. Aside from the physical damage that sexual abuse can cause, the emotional component is powerful and far reaching. The layer of shame that accompanies sexual abuse makes the behavior doubly traumatizing. While news stories of sexual predators are scary, what is even more frightening is that the adult who sexually abuses a youngster or adolescent is usually someone the youngster knows and is supposed to trust: a relative, childcare provider, family friend, neighbor, teacher, coach, or clergy member. Kids may worry that others won’t believe them and will be angry with them if they tell. They may believe that the abuse is their fault, and the shame is devastating and can cause lifelong effects.

Signs of sexual abuse—
  • Behavioral signs. Does the youngster display knowledge or interest in sexual acts inappropriate to his or her age, or even seductive behavior? A youngster might appear to avoid another person, or display unusual behavior- either being very aggressive or very passive. Older kids might resort to destructive behaviors to take away the pain, such as alcohol or drug abuse, self-mutilation, or suicide attempts.
  • Caregiver signs. The caregiver may seem to be unusually controlling and protective of the child, limiting contact with other kids and adults. Again, as with other types of abuse, sometimes the caregiver does not give outward signs of concern. This does not mean the youngster is lying or exaggerating.
  • Physical signs. A youngster may have trouble sitting or standing, or have stained, bloody or torn underclothes. Swelling, bruises, or bleeding in the genital area is a red flag. An STD or pregnancy, especially under the age of 14, is a strong cause of concern.

Sexual abuse: The online risk—

Kids who use the Internet are also vulnerable to Internet predators. Among the warning signs of online sexual abuse are these:
  • You find pornography on your child's computer.
  • Your youngster becomes withdrawn from the family.
  • Your youngster receives phone calls or mail from people you don't know, or makes calls to numbers that you don’t recognize.
  • Your youngster spends large amounts of time online, especially at night, and may turn the computer monitor off or quickly change the screen on the monitor when you come into the room.

Child neglect—

Child neglect is the most frequent form of abuse. Neglect is a pattern of failing to provide for a child's basic needs, endangering a child’s physical and psychological well-being. Child neglect is not always deliberate. Sometimes, a caregiver becomes physically or mentally unable to care for a child, such as in untreated depression or anxiety. Other times, alcohol or drug abuse may seriously impair judgment and the ability to keep a youngster safe. The end result, however, is a youngster who is not getting their physical and/or emotional needs met.

Warning signs of child neglect—
  • Behavioral signs. Does the youngster seem to be unsupervised? School kids may be frequently late or tardy. The youngster might show troublesome, disruptive behavior or be withdrawn and passive.
  • Caregiver signs. Does the caregiver have problems with drugs or alcohol? While most of us have a little clutter in the home, is the caregiver’s home filthy and unsanitary? Is there adequate food in the house? A caregiver might also show reckless disregard for the child’s safety, letting older kids play unsupervised or leaving a baby unattended. A caregiver might refuse or delay necessary health care for the child.
  • Physical signs. A youngster may consistently be dressed inappropriately for the weather, or have ill-fitting, dirty clothes and shoes. They might appear to have consistently bad hygiene, like appearing very dirty, matted and unwashed hair, or noticeable body odor. Another warning sign is untreated illnesses and physical injuries.

What to do if a youngster reports abuse—

You may feel overwhelmed and confused if a youngster begins talking to you about abuse. It is a difficult subject and hard to accept, and you might not know what to say. The best help you can provide is calm, unconditional support and reassurance. Let your actions speak for you if you are having trouble finding the words. Remember that it is a tremendous act of courage for kids to come forward about abuse. They might have been told specifically not to tell, and may even feel that the abuse is normal. They might feel they are to blame for the abuse. The youngster is looking to you to provide support and help- don’t let him or her down.

Avoid denial and remain calm. A common reaction to news as unpleasant and shocking as abuse is denial. However, if you display denial to a child, or show shock or disgust at what they are saying, the youngster may be afraid to continue and will shut down. As hard as it may be, remain as calm and reassuring as you can.

Don’t interrogate. Let the youngster explain to you in his/her own words what happened, but don’t interrogate the youngster or ask leading questions. This may confuse and fluster the youngster and make it harder for them to continue their story.

Reassure the youngster that they did nothing wrong. It takes a lot for a youngster to come forward about abuse. Reassure him or her that you take what is said seriously, and that it is not the child’s fault.

Reporting abuse and neglect—

Reporting abuse seems so official. Many people are reluctant to get involved in other families’ lives. However, by reporting, you can make a tremendous difference in the life of a youngster and the child’s family, especially if you help stop the abuse early. Early identification and treatment can help mitigate the long-term effects of abuse. If the abuse is stopped and the youngster receives competent treatment, the abused youngster can begin to regain a sense of self-confidence and trust. Some moms and dads may also benefit from support, parent training and anger management.

Reporting abuse: Myths and Facts—
  • I don’t want to interfere in someone else’s family. The effects of abuse are life long, affecting future relationships, self esteem, and sadly putting even more kids at risk of abuse as the cycle continues. Help break the cycle of abuse.
  • It won’t make a difference what I have to say. If you have a gut feeling that something is wrong, it is better to be safe than sorry. Even if you don’t see the whole picture, others may have noticed as well, and a pattern can help identify abuse that might have otherwise slipped through the cracks.
  • They will know it was me who called. Reporting is anonymous. In most states, you do not have to give your name when you report abuse. The abuser cannot find out who made the report of abuse.
  • What if I break up someone’s home? The priority in youngster protective services is keeping kids in the home. A abuse report does not mean a youngster is automatically removed from the home - unless the youngster is clearly in danger. Support such as parenting classes, anger management or other resources may be offered first to parents if safe for the child.

Abuse Hotlines: Where to call to get help or report abuse—

If you suspect a youngster is in immediate danger contact law enforcement as soon as possible.
  • To get help in the U.S., call: 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453) – Childhelp National Abuse Hotline
  • To get help for child sexual abuse, call: 1-888-PREVENT (1-888-773-8368) – Stop It Now
  • 1-800-656-HOPE Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN)

Abuse prevention—

Reducing the incidence of abuse is a matter of intervention and education.

Intervention—

In some cases, as in cases of extreme cruelty, sexual abuse, and severe alcohol and drug abuse, kids are safer away from the caregiver. Not all abusive moms and dads intend harm to their kids, however. Some moms and dads need help to realize that they are hurting their kids, and can work on their problems. Some examples include:
  • Alcohol and drug abuse. Alcohol and drug abusers may be so focused on their addiction that they are hurting their kids without realizing it. Getting appropriate help and support for alcohol and drug abuse can help moms and dads focus back on their kids.
  • Domestic violence. A mother might be trying to do her best to protect her kids from an abusive husband, not realizing that the kids are being emotionally abused even if they are not physically abused. Helping a mother leave an abusive relationship and getting supportive counseling can help stop these kids from being abused.
  • Untreated mental illness. A depressed mother might not be able to respond to her own needs much less her kid’s. A caregiver suffering from emotional trauma may be distant and withdrawn from her kids, or quick to anger without understanding why. Treatment for the caregiver means better care for the kids.

In some cases, you might be able to provide support for parents/caregivers who need help yourself. What if a parent or caregiver comes to you? The key is not to be self-righteous or judgmental, which can alienate caregivers, but offer support and concrete offers of help, such as helping them connect with community resources. If you feel that your safety or the safety of the youngster would be threatened if you try to intervene, leave it to the professionals. You may be able to provide more support later after the initial professional intervention.

Education—

Some caregivers have not learned the skills necessary for good parenting. Teen parents, for example, might have unrealistic expectations about how much care babies need or why toddlers can be so prone to tantrums. Other times, previous societal and cultural expectations of good child raising may not be considered so today. In previous generations and in many cultures, for example, strict physical discipline was considered to be essential in teaching a youngster to behave. Education can greatly help caregivers who need information on raising kids. Parenting classes can not only be effective for teen parents, but for parents who themselves were abused and need to learn new parenting patterns. Education on managing stress and building healthier relationships also helps caregivers.

Kids need education as well to help protect against abuse. They need to know that abuse is never their fault and is never “OK”. Teaching a youngster about inappropriate touch and that they should never keep secrets that make them uncomfortable can help prevent sexual abuse.

For caregivers—

Do you see yourself in some of these descriptions, painful as it may be? Do you feel angry and frustrated and don’t know where to turn? Caring for kids can be very difficult. Don’t go it alone. Ask for help if you need it. If you don’t have a friend or family to turn to, call the abuse hotline, 1-800-4-A-CHILD, yourself. The hotline is also designed to get you support and find resources in the community that can help you.

The Aspergers Comprehensive Handbook

Meltdowns in Students with Aspergers

Strategies for Teachers to Prevent Emotional Outbursts

Aspergers is a form of high functioning autism and can co-exist with other disorders such as ADHD, depression, and anxiety. But mostly, Aspergers affects a youngster’s ability to socialize. Aspergers children have difficulty recognizing facial expressions, sarcasm, and teasing, and struggle to adapt to unexpected changes in routine. Their interests tend to be very narrow, and this can limit their capacity to relate to others.

Due to these struggles, youngsters with Aspergers oftentimes experience anger, fear, sadness, and frustration. There are several effective interventions that can be employed in the classroom to help improve an Aspergers youngster’s learning experience. These can assist the child in feeling more comfortable and decrease anxiety, paving the way for academic achievement.

Make Classroom Rules Clear—

Children with Aspergers thrive on rules, but will often ignore them when they are vague or not meaningful. Educators should detail the most important classroom rules and why they exist. A written list prominently displayed, or a handout of the classroom rules can be very helpful.

Minimize Surprises in the Classroom—

Children on the autism spectrum need structured settings to succeed. They do not like surprises. Things like sudden seating changes or unexpected modifications to the routine could cause anxiety and even meltdowns. Educators should try to provide ample warnings if there is to be a change of plans. For instance, sending a note home to the parents if a seating change is imminent would be beneficial.

A back up plan can be presented to the class in anticipation of schedule changes. When the Friday schedule that usually includes watching an educational film in the afternoon changes if time is short, the teacher should inform the children ahead of time that they will work on free reading or journaling instead, as an example.

Provide Sensory Support—

Many youngsters with Aspergers also experience sensory processing issues. Sensitivity to light, sound, touch, taste, and smells can irritate the youngster, making him more likely to act out or withdraw. Consult the parents to determine what these sensitivities are. Minimizing classroom chaos, noise, and clutter will be a good start.

If possible, get help from an occupational therapist and try to work sensory breaks into the youngster’s school day. Chores such as returning a load of books to the library or even doing a few jumping jacks in the hallway can go a long way in helping the youngster realign and get back to learning.

Promote Supportive Friendships—

If it seems appropriate, educate the class about Aspergers. Develop empathy by making children aware of inappropriate words and bullying behaviors. Highlight the youngster’s strengths in classroom lessons to enable him to find friends with common interests.

If the child with Aspergers seems to be struggling with friendships, group him during classroom activities with those that are more kind and empathetic. At recess or lunch, try assigning a classroom buddy who will be supportive and guide the youngster through those more chaotic times.

Make a Plan for Emotional Outbursts—

Provide a quiet place for the child who has frequent meltdowns. This may be a trip to the bathroom with a classroom aide, or a visit to the school counselor. A written plan for coping in these periods of high stress is critical for an Aspergers child’s success.

Helping youngsters with Aspergers in the classroom is yet another challenge for today’s overburdened educators. However, with insightful monitoring, parental and professional guidance, and creative strategies, a love of school and learning can be fostered in youngsters with Aspergers.

My Aspergers Child: Preventing Emotional Outbursts in Aspergers Children

Aspergers Kids and Homework Challenges

Kids with Aspergers Need Routine and Clarity!

Aspergers (high functioning autism) disrupts a youngster’s ability to recognize social cues, thereby causing social awkwardness. Other characteristics of autism may also be present, such as a lowered tolerance for new situations or sudden transitions, lack of organizational skills, inconsistent energy levels, and high distractibility. All of these can present challenges when attempting to complete homework.

Luckily, there are some basic strategies that moms and dads can undertake to help prevent those dreaded evening meltdowns. The first step is to observe the youngster and see what hinders her from completing her work. This is paramount to planning homework sessions. During these observations, jot down answers to the following about the youngster:

1. Does she fatigue quickly?
2. Is she easily distracted by noise or activity?
3. What frustrates or upsets her?
4. What is her best time of day?

Establish Consistent Time and Place—

After observing the youngster for a few days, establish a consistent time for homework, preferably when she is well fed and at her best. The amount of time she spends on homework nightly will vary by grade level. When homework length begins to increase, she may stay more focused with short breaks. Incorporate these into the schedule and make sure she has enough time to complete assignments without rushing.

It is beneficial to have a special homework location away from the TV, radio, or other distractions. Kids with Aspergers can also be frustrated by clutter, so make sure that the workspace is organized and that all necessary materials for homework are available and easy to find.

Break Down Large Assignments—

Some homework assignments can be overwhelming for kids with Aspergers. Moms and dads will sometimes need to work closely with their youngster to help her get started. Providing one or two examples may be all that is required in some instances. For more complicated work, moms and dads may want to demonstrate how to break it down into smaller steps. This added attention may be needed for each unfamiliar assignment.

Eliminate Vagueness—

Sometimes assignments may be unclear, even to moms and dads. If this happens often, it would be best for moms and dads to communicate with the teacher about their youngster’s needs. Receiving more detailed instructions for upcoming assignments will go a long way to ensuring that homework gets done correctly and without tantrums. The key is to get the information ahead of time so that the youngster with Aspergers can be prepared, not surprised with an unknown.

Incorporate Interests—

A unique quality of kids with Aspergers is that they can develop abnormally intense interests in one or two subjects. Common ones may include weather, sports statistics, or computers. Using a little ingenuity, moms and dads can persuade the youngster to do seemingly unrelated work by integrating her interests.

Kids fascinated by computers may be encouraged to complete writing assignments using an online dictionary, for instance. Kids who have nightly reading requirements could be allowed to choose books that are related to weather, dinosaurs, or other science topics of interest. If the youngster seems to dislike math, create word problems for practicing addition, subtraction, and multiplication using subjects such as baseball or cars.

Kids with Aspergers possess unique skills and can grow to be highly productive, thriving members of society. But, like everyone, they face their own set of challenges along the way. Homework may be one of those challenges. With careful planning however, moms and dads can make this necessary and important chore less worrisome and help to pave their youngster’s way to success.

My Aspergers Child: How to Prevent Meltdowns in Aspergers Children

L-Carnosine: Nutritional Supplement for Aspergers Kids


Double-blind, placebo-controlled study of L-carnosine supplementation in kids with autistic spectrum disorders:

L-Carnosine, a dipeptide, can enhance frontal lobe function or be neuroprotective. It can also correlate with gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-homocarnosine interaction, with possible anticonvulsive effects.

We investigated 31 kids with autistic spectrum disorders in an 8-week, double-blinded study to determine if 800 mg L-carnosine daily would result in observable changes versus placebo. Outcome measures were the Childhood Autism Rating Scale, the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale, the Expressive and Receptive One-Word Picture Vocabulary tests, and Clinical Global Impressions of Change.

Kids on placebo did not show statistically significant changes. After 8 weeks on L-carnosine, kids showed statistically significant improvements on the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale (total score and the Behavior, Socialization, and Communication subscales) and the Receptive One-Word Picture Vocabulary test (all P < .05).

Improved trends were noted on other outcome measures. Although the mechanism of action of L-carnosine is not well understood, it may enhance neurologic function, perhaps in the enterorhinal or temporal cortex.
  

What is L-Carnosine?

L-Carnosine is a naturally occurring dipeptide that consists of alanine and histadine.

Where was L-Carnosine developed and how is it currently being used?

L-Carnosine was developed by a leading U.S. Pediatric Neurologist, and was first utilized in his practice. Found to be beneficial to kids diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Asperger's Syndrome, PDD, ADD, ADHD, Apraxia and Epilepsy, the use of L-Carnosine has steadily grown, and is now benefiting kids throughout the United States as well as other countries.

Is there clinical data indicating that L-Carnosine is effective?

Double-blind and Open-label studies have reported improvements in the following areas:

• Auditory processing
 
• EEG reports
 
• Fine motor skills
 
• Language skills
 
• Seizure frequency
• Socialization
 
• Speech production
 

What benefits should parents expect from L-CARNOSINE in autism spectrum disorders?
 

Although not a cure, L-CARNOSINE may improve receptive language, auditory processing, socialization, awareness of surroundings, and even help fine motor planning and expressive language when compared to placebo. Improvements are usually seen between 1-8 weeks of starting on L-Carnosine.

How can L-CARNOSINE help with epilepsy?
 

The exact mechanism is unknown, but in open label studies and clinical experiences, L-CARNOSINE has improved some EEG abnormalities and frequency of myoclonic and generalized seizures. L-CARNOSINE has also helped cognitive development in severe epileptics even when EEG or seizure frequency was unchanged. Remember that L-CARNOSINE is only a dietary supplement and not a drug used to treat epilepsy.

What if my youngster is Diabetic?

L-Carnosine is designed to be tolerated by Diabetics, and is compatible with the Ketogenic diet and gluten-casein free diets. It is recommended that you consult with your youngster's physician prior to administering L-Carnosine.

What if my youngster has allergies, sensitivities to certain foods or has been instructed by a physician to avoid specific ingredients?

L-Carnosine contains no yeast, wheat gluten, milk/dairy products, corn, sodium, sugar, starch, artificial coloring, preservatives, flavoring or carbohydrates.

Does L-Carnosine require a medical prescription?

L-Carnosine does not require a prescription; however, it is recommended that you consult with your youngster's physician prior to administering this or any dietary supplement.

What is the recommended dosage for the intake of L-Carnosine?

As a dietary supplement, take 1-2 capsules daily or as directed by a physician. Clinical research in autism spectrum disorders shows that 2 capsules twice daily is an effective dosage. Always consult a knowledgeable physician when using a dietary supplement.

Is L-Carnosine palatable for kids?

L-Carnosine is tasteless and odorless. If preferred, L-Carnosine capsules may be opened and their contents mixed directly into foods and beverages. However, do not mix into very high temperature foods. For example, you can mix the L-CARNOSINE into scrambled eggs once they have cooled off, but do not mix into the eggs while still cooking.

Does L-CARNOSINE have to be given with food?

L-CARNOSINE can be given with or without food.

What are the most common side effects of L-CARNOSINE?

No reports of harmful physical side effects from L-CARNOSINE have been received to date. Background research of prior animal and human experience, plus in over 1000 kids on L-Carnosine since June of 2001, have not shown any adverse liver, blood, kidney, or central nervous system side effects. Behaviorally, too high a dose may over stimulate some patients' frontal lobes which can cause increased irritability, hyperactivity, or insomnia. This has been noted in already manic or hyperactive autistic patients.

What about using L-CARNOSINE with other dietary supplements or drugs?

Supplements: To our knowledge, no other dietary supplements have been studied in a double-blind placebo-controlled manner. Fish Oil, High dose B6, Magnesium, or probiotic or mega vitamin therapies are all unproven. Some high dose vitamins may make kids hyperactive, which may confuse parents if L-CARNOSINE is added.

Drugs: L-CARNOSINE does not appear to alter valproic acid levels. We have not had reports of adverse effects with stimulants, anti-psychotic or SSRI medications. Acetyl-choline esterase inhibitors may over stimulate in combination with L-CARNOSINE, but no physically adverse interactions have been reported. Acetaminophen, Ibuprofen, and antibiotics are not contra indicated to the best of our knowledge.

Diets: L-CARNOSINE is designed to be tolerated by Diabetics, and is compatible with the ketogenic diet and gluten-casein free diets.

How long does L-CARNOSINE last?

No pharmacokinetic studies have been done to date to determine the half-life of L-Carnosine.

Should usage be interrupted or discontinued during school holidays, vacations, or periodically during the year?

No, it is not necessary nor do we recommend interrupting or discontinuing the usage of L-Carnosine during school vacations, holidays or periodically unless recommended by a physician.

Where can I find the right medication to help his Asperger’s, not cure it?

Question

Where can I find the right medication to help his Asperger’s, not cure it?

Answer

Asperger’s Syndrome (high-functioning autism) is not something with a cure. There are no medications that can make Asperger’s go away. Many children with Asperger’s benefit from social skills training and cognitive behavioral therapy. In addition, many children can benefit from medications for symptoms related to the syndrome. Many children with Asperger’s suffer from anxiety or depression. Some suffer from hyper-activity or attention deficit disorder. Some children with Asperger’s suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Medications designed to alleviate those symptoms are available for children with Asperger’s. Working with your doctor to understand the symptoms your child suffers from is the first step. Once those symptoms are understood, it is important to then talk with your doctor about which medications might be available to treat those symptoms in your child.

A variety of medications are often available for some of the symptoms of Asperger’s syndrome. For example, many different drugs are available for ADD. If your child suffers from ADD, your doctor will decide which medication and what dose is right for your child. Your child will need to try the medication to see how it affects him. During that trial period, you’ll need to watch your child carefully to see how he reacts. If he reacts well and tolerates the medicine, and the medicine alleviates the symptoms, your child will continue on with the medication.

If your child tries a medicine and suffers from side affects or if the medicine doesn’t help alleviate the symptoms, you’ll need to consult the doctor about changing the medication. This process could be a long one. It is not unheard of to try three or four different medications and dosages to find the medication that is right for your child.

Be sure that you understand the benefits and the possible drawbacks and side affects of any medications you give your child. Also, try to understand how the medicine can work in concert with behavioral therapy in helping your child manage the symptoms of Asperger’s. Be sure to tell the doctor about any herbal medicines or other supplements your child might be taking. Supplements can often have harmful interactions with medicines, or they can render the medicines ineffective.

My Aspergers Child: How to Prevent Meltdowns

Raising an Aspergers Child: Tips for Home and School


"Our son has just been diagnosed with asperger syndrome (high functioning). Even though we thought he might have it, it was still a shock. This is all new to us... not sure what path to take at this point. Any tips to get us started on this journey? Thanks!"

You can best serve your youngster by learning about Aspergers (high functioning autism) and providing a supportive and loving home environment. Remember that your youngster, just like every other youngster, has his or her own strengths and weaknesses and needs as much support, patience, and understanding as you can give.

Educating yourself about the condition and knowing what to expect is an important part of helping your youngster succeed outside of home and develop independence. Learn about Aspergers by talking to your doctor or contacting Asperger's organizations. This will reduce your and your family members' stress and help your youngster succeed.

The following are some suggestions on how to help your youngster who has Aspergers. Some of the ideas will be helpful, and some may not work for you. Flexibility, creativity, and a willingness to continue to learn will all help you as you raise your youngster.

General strategies for success:

• Be aware that background noises, such as a clock ticking or the hum of fluorescent lighting, may be distracting to your youngster.

• Kids with Aspergers benefit from daily routines for meals, homework, and bedtime. They also like specific rules, and consistent expectations mean less stress and confusion for them.

• Kids with Aspergers often mature more slowly. Don't always expect them to "act their age."

• Many children with Aspergers do best with verbal (rather than nonverbal) teaching and assignments. A direct, concise, and straightforward manner is also helpful.

• Children with Aspergers often have trouble understanding the "big picture" and tend to see part of a situation rather than the whole. That's why they often benefit from a parts-to-whole teaching approach, starting with part of a concept and adding to it to demonstrate encompassing ideas.

• Try to identify stress triggers and avoid them if possible. Prepare your youngster in advance for difficult situations, and teach him or her ways to cope. For example, teach your youngster coping skills for dealing with change or new situations.

• Visual supports, including schedules and other written materials that serve as organizational aids, can be helpful.

Strategies for developing social skills:

• Encourage your youngster to learn how to interact with children and what to do when spoken to, and explain why it is important. Give lots of praise, especially when he or she uses a social skill without prompting.

• Foster involvement with others, especially if your youngster tends to be a loner.

• Help your youngster understand others' feelings by role-playing and watching and discussing human behaviors seen in movies or on television. Provide a model for your youngster by telling him or her about your own feelings and reactions to those feelings.

• Practice activities, such as games or question-and-answer sessions, that call for taking turns or putting yourself in the other person's place.

• Teach your youngster about public and private places, so that he or she learns what is appropriate in both circumstances. For example, hugging may not be appropriate at school but is usually fine at home.

• Teach your youngster how to read and respond appropriately to social cues. Give him or her "stock" phrases to use in various social situations, such as when being introduced. You can also teach your youngster how to interact by role-playing.

• Your youngster may not understand the social norms and rules that come more naturally to other kids. Provide clear explanations of why certain behaviors are expected, and teach rules for those behaviors.

Strategies for school:

• Ask your youngster's teacher to seat your youngster next to classmates who are sensitive to your youngster's special needs. These classmates might also serve as "buddies" during recess, at lunch, and at other times.

• Be aware of and try to protect your youngster from bullying and teasing. Talk to your youngster's teacher or school counselor about educating classmates about Aspergers.

• Encourage your youngster's teacher to include your youngster in classroom activities that emphasize his or her best academic skills, such as reading, vocabulary, and art.

• Orient your youngster to the school setting. Before the school year starts, take time to "walk through" your youngster's daily schedule. You can also use pictures to make your youngster familiar with the new settings before school starts.

• Set up homework routines for your youngster by doing homework at a specific time and place every day. This will help your youngster learn about time management.

• Some kids with Asperger's have poor handwriting. Typing schoolwork on a computer may be one way to make homework easier. Using computers can also help kids improve fine motor skills and organize information. Occupational therapy may also be helpful.

• Use rewards to motivate your youngster. Allow him or her to watch TV or play a favorite video game or give points toward a "special interest" gift when he or she performs well.

• Use visual systems, such as calendars, checklists, and notes, to help define and organize schoolwork.

==> How To Prevent Meltdowns and Tantrums In Children With High-Functioning Autism and Asperger's

Can Asperger's Teens Make It In College?

Question

My son was just diagnosed with aspergers syndrome and i am heartbroken. Will he ever be able to go to college or even make it through HS? He is 13 years old and can’t make friends and has a tough time in school.

Answer

Improving social skills can be an important part of any child's repertoire. Asperger's (high functioning autism), like classic autism, falls on a continuum of symptoms and impairment. Usually, it constitutes an exclusive focus on one area of interest, or one topic, particularly of a non-social nature. The ability to empathize with others and their circumstances could be one area in which social skills get compromised.

Social skills can be improved, and an awareness of social signifiers may make a big difference in your son's experience at college. Sometimes called interpersonal training, the approach consists of two dimensions.

First, a individual is taught to understand communicative cues, and how to send and receive them in a contextually appropriate manner. These cues include smiling, eye contact, nodding to register comprehension, posture, and learning to ask open-ended questions. In addition, learning to disclose opinions, experiences, and feelings in a reciprocal manner with others can immensely improve social skills and social standing.

The second dimension to learning interpersonal skills is gaining emotional insight: managing anxiety, self-criticism, depression, anger, and avoidance in social circumstances.

The first dimension gets most of the attention, but the second dimension is most important. That's because we might learn a "skill," but feel too much anxiety, depression, or critical self-consciousness to implement it.

Remember that the average male teenager may have a lot of social-skill deficits that usually get worked on because of his desire to get along with females. Females develop social skills earlier, on average, and males catch up to become viable companions and boyfriend material. However, the emotional glitches I mentioned above, including anxiety, self-criticism, shame, and depression might be the more important issues to tackle.

By developing emotional muscles, which consists of displaying creative optimism, self-acceptance, and an acceptance of others with whom we disagree, your son can learn some specific social skills. Saying "hi" and smiling to one new person a day will provide immense feedback, as will the task of deepening relationships with real self-disclosure (including taking some appropriate risks) and confidently being himself.

Teaching Social Skills and Emotion Management


COMMENTS:

•    Anonymous said… Asperger's, although a struggle, can also be a blessing. Once my son was diagnosed, we finally had our answers which explained his behaviors. It then put us on the right track to help him. He is now 18, graduated from high school, and working full time. The best thing you can do is educate yourself.
•    Anonymous said… Aspies are some of the most successful people..
•    Anonymous said… Bill Gates is known to be an Aspie...
•    Anonymous said… Don't give up hope but also realize there's more to life then going to college. There are training schools.. oh could set out to be a business owner and operator.. my aspie just turned 18 and is a junior,she has plans to become a manicurist.
•    Anonymous said… Hang in there! Remember Aspies have a lot of strengths too. Foster those strengths and teach skills to make up for what does not come naturally. This disorder is not a curse. My 14 year old also had huge problems making and keeping friends. This is the first year that he has found the right circle of friends and it has made the world of difference. College/University will definitely be difficult for him, but with the right supports in place, I'm confident he'll do just fine.
•    Anonymous said… He will be fine. He is just a loner in his own world. My teen is 16 and wants to do everything. This is a strange diagnosis to understand but read and educate yourself. It will help. Each child is different. My son would be an excellent computer geek. Hopefully, it will be a good career.
•    Anonymous said… How did she go 13 years with no clue?? I can't go an hour without knowing my aspie son is up to something, let alone the behaviors and obvious signs.
•    Anonymous said… I have a friend that is sr it manager for a nationwide company with aspergers. My son has aspergers and is 12 and i know he will be fine
•    Anonymous said… I mentor students with asperger's in university, my students are all doing really well, so don't worry, with the right support your son could do anything xx
•    Anonymous said… I think it may be of help to know what state people are expressing concerns in so perhaps local support can be offered and added. Especially with getting help.
•    Anonymous said… It's very common for Aspergers to be diagnosed later. My son was diagnosed at 11. At no point did the post say she had no clue- but sometimes the diagnosis takes time - each Aspergers diagnosis is different - what appears in your child may be different for the next. Support and compassion is what each of us Aspie parents need. No judgement necessary.
•    Anonymous said… many of the worlds best have aspergers. have faith
•    Anonymous said… My 15 y.o has always had trouble forming & keeping friendships. It's still somewhat of an issue but the issue lies with me, not him. For the most part I feel he has people he hangs with & feels comfortable with, I'm just not sure how reciprocal those friendships are. In his eyes though, they are his people. I do believe he will fare better in an adult world though as he is so much more adept at adult conversations. I know in my heart he will be fine, there are times when I think he feels on the outer but to him it is just the norm. He has many connections daily with people & never misses an opportunity to hang out with friends after school. These are important for building his social skills. Don't be heartbroken, there are many positives, you just have to navigate the hard times (& there are plenty but you just go on, for your child, cos they need you!) Look to the future & just be his support network during the teen years.
•    Anonymous said… My aspie son is 17 and in his last year of high school smile emoticon
•    Anonymous said… My husband and his twin brother, age 45, were not diagnosed until they were in their 30s, so they never got help as children or teens. Both now married with kids, did great in college, and have executive level jobs for good companies. So yes, they can definitely succeed. I think a lot of it had to do with my in laws teaching them the mindset that failure is not an option.
•    Anonymous said… My son has Aspergers & is also 13. I have all the hope that he will go to college & be successful!
•    Anonymous said… My son is 10 and we think he has aspergers.
•    Anonymous said… My son is 22, he completed a college course, he makes film's, he passed his driving test first time and he is the best son, would'nt change him for the world x
•    Anonymous said… My son struggled through high school and is doing great in college. 13 is tough enough without having Aspergers on top of things for sure - keep working with him socially and find out what programs the high school offers. My son was on an IEP, which is good and bad. You have to stay on top of the teachers to get them to stick with the IEP. Some teachers are amazing and others not so much. Wishing you and your son all the best.
•    Anonymous said… My son was diagnosed last year at13 and what a difference a year makes!! All the help he now has, has made the most incredible difference. 3 1/2 days at school a week and able to socialise a lot more. A long way to go but with the right help and support I know that he has a very bright and rosy future smile emoticon It's not a death sentence just means they are wired different once you get your head round that its a lot easier smile emoticon x
•    Anonymous said… My son was diagnosed with Aspergers, ADHD, OCD, early onset bipolar disorder etc he graduated 2nd top of his class in college (computing) went onto uni and finished with a 2.1 in Computer Forensics. You bet it's possible!!
•    Anonymous said… Not only go to college, but probably work at one. Go to any lab on any campus at any university, you'll find at least one person on the spectrum there. Trust me. He'll do just fine. Exploit his strengths. Always trust him to know himself better than anyone. Support but don't push. You got this Mama.
•    Anonymous said… Our story is the same and the proper school was key in his progress.
•    Anonymous said… Please don't be heartbroken. Your child will have amazing ability (most likely, several abilities) that will shine through. He may do things "differently" but his mind will blow you away at times. He may be challenging, but, possibly innovative and strong-willed. Our children are not fighting a deadly disease. It's not a diagnosis for a terminal illness. This means they think differently. We just have to find the puzzle pieces to understand. It can be overwhelming...but the community is very supportive. You are not alone, and neither is he. Our children have so many gifts that are waiting to unfold! It's amazing to me, how talented they are, all in their own ways. Keep being his biggest advocate and help others understand, because, more times than not-they probably will not. But that's okay, sometimes, it takes time.
•    Anonymous said… Some very very intelligent well paid professionals have aspergers. He will be absolutely fabulous!!!
•    Anonymous said… Sometimes you know there is a problem but it takes years for professionals to diagnose the problem.
•    Anonymous said… That's crazy to me how they can delay diagnosis for some parents, leaving them at a loss, and give some parents a quick diagnosis. I didn't judge her🙄 I'm just wondering how 13 years passed with no one batting an eye, that's how the post made it seem.
•    Anonymous said… There are some great support colleges and college programs for aspies. Definitely!
•    Anonymous said… There is hope...Einstein was an Aspie, Susan Boyle too. My child was diagnosed at age 7 with ADD and age 12 with Aspergers (high fumctioning) going to grade 10 next year. Get yourself lots of reading, google, get familiar with it in order to 'understand' your child. Strongs!!!!
•    Anonymous said… With God all things are possible...There is hope...
•    Anonymous said… With or without aspergers you get out of life what you put in. Surround him with love support and give him the confidence to know he's different but that it's not a negative. And there's always more than one way to do something and the world is his.
•    Anonymous said… Yes! My son is 22 and a junior in college. He was diagnosed with Asperger's at the age of 14. He had difficulty socially from preschool up until he was a junior in high school. By then, he was in a good school that gave him the academic challenge he needed. With maturation, he was able to start working on social skills. He is still a work in progress, but I am so proud of the obstacles he's overcome. You can feel free to PM me.

Post your comment below...

My child has been rejected by his peers, ridiculed and bullied !!!

Social rejection has devastating effects in many areas of functioning. Because the ASD child tends to internalize how others treat him, rejection damages self-esteem and often causes anxiety and depression. As the child feels worse about himself and becomes more anxious and depressed – he performs worse, socially and intellectually.

Click here to read the full article…

How to Prevent Meltdowns in Children on the Spectrum

Meltdowns are not a pretty sight. They are somewhat like overblown temper tantrums, but unlike tantrums, meltdowns can last anywhere from ten minutes to over an hour. When it starts, the Asperger's or HFA child is totally out-of-control. When it ends, both you and your child are totally exhausted. But... don’t breathe a sigh of relief yet. At the least provocation, for the remainder of that day -- and sometimes into the next - the meltdown can return in full force.

Click here for the full article...

Parenting Defiant Teens on the Spectrum

Although Aspergers [high-functioning autism] is at the milder end of the autism spectrum, the challenges parents face when disciplining a teenager on the spectrum are more difficult than they would be with an average teen. Complicated by defiant behavior, the teen is at risk for even greater difficulties on multiple levels – unless the parents’ disciplinary techniques are tailored to their child's special needs.

Click here to read the full article…

Older Teens and Young Adult Children with ASD Still Living At Home

Your older teenager or young “adult child” isn’t sure what to do, and he is asking you for money every few days. How do you cut the purse strings and teach him to be independent? Parents of teens with ASD face many problems that other parents do not. Time is running out for teaching their adolescent how to become an independent adult. As one mother put it, "There's so little time, yet so much left to do."

Click here to read the full article…

Parenting Children and Teens with High-Functioning Autism

Two traits often found in kids with High-Functioning Autism are “mind-blindness” (i.e., the inability to predict the beliefs and intentions of others) and “alexithymia” (i.e., the inability to identify and interpret emotional signals in others). These two traits reduce the youngster’s ability to empathize with peers. As a result, he or she may be perceived by adults and other children as selfish, insensitive and uncaring.

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to read the full article...

Highly Effective Research-Based Parenting Strategies for Children with Asperger's and HFA

Become an expert in helping your child cope with his or her “out-of-control” emotions, inability to make and keep friends, stress, anger, thinking errors, and resistance to change.

Click here for the full article...

My Aspergers Child - Syndicated Content