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On the spectrum

Blended4213's picture

I knew when I met DH that his oldest had ADHD and that BM refused to medicate him. I did not know that he was possibly on the spectrum though, and that DH didn't pursue this diagnosis that was mentioned by the pediatrician because BM was so opposed to it.

Now I don't think he was trying to hide it from me, it more or less came out later like, oh yeah, the doctor mentioned maybe he had this, he couldn't even remember the name. So I'm not trying to blame him for withholding, however, I didn't realize how difficult not only this child would be but also the others. 

Youngest is not as bad but still a challenge, DH is luckily very invested in discipline with him so I think he stands a good chance of continuing to behave better.

Middle SS, I think personally is also on the spectrum. He is advanced in school but behind socially and just doesn't seem to understand common sense, is also odd and not in a good way. He will get into your personal bubble and not seem to notice. He will talk in a very loud robotic voice about random stuff. Especially trying to watch a movie. I am very annoyed by a lot of behaviors both these boys have because they seem to be very focused on themselves and it is difficult to live with. I think DH is in denial that middle SS could be on the spectrum. 

I still feel like DH should be teaching these kids more appropriate social skills, but it's almost as if they just don't get it when he does correct them. I guess I just feel so alone sometimes. I don't want to blame bad behavior on being in the spectrum because not everyone with this has such negative qualities. But I have to keep my mouth shut so much because otherwise I'd be constantly nagging.

My one interaction with middle SS today was him pretty much stepping over me as we were playing a board game on the floor and he came to see his dad, but rather than go around all of us he walked right through us. I should just let it go but it seems so inconsiderate. Maybe he truly doesn't realize and I should feel sorry for him. I'm stuck between not knowing if he even is on the spectrum or just a rude kid who was not taught manners.

justmakingthebest's picture

I will never understand a parent who will stick their head in the sand over a diagnosis vs. just getting the kid the support they need. 

Having that dx has allowed my SS20 to:

  • Graduate
  • Get in with DARS
  • Have a job with a job coach
  • State paid vocational school with additional assistance
  • Counseling support
  • Medication to help him cope with the world around him

What would running from it do? Make us all frustrated with him all the time? Set him up for lifetime of failures because he is wired differently?

Don't get me wrong, I still come here to complain because it is hard to have a grown man in my home that will never live on his own and forgets to shower or wipe his own ass- however, because he has the help he needs from outside support systems that he gets BECAUSE he is Autistic, we make it through. 

Blended4213's picture

I know, it is so frustrating. With older SS, he does have a 504 plan with school but he is just so difficult to live with. He is not doing well academically and is  less emotionally mature than my 6 year older. He will not be living here forever but his plans will be adjusted. No college but more of a trade or something which is fine, he can survive without us but his life will always be a challenge. Even DH gets frustrated with him. When it comes to attitude, how much can you blame on a disability and how much is just the kid misbehaving? From what I know about Aspergers it causes difficulty reading other's emotions and having empathy for others. It's like both kids are just not kind people though and having this diagnosis doesn't cause that, does it? I know others who have it and are socially challenged but very kind people.

The middle one seems even higher on the spectrum. I guess I'm more here to vent about odd behaviors he has that seem very rude to me but DH doesn't seem to mind. I don't want to nag about everything but it's also just hard to live with him. If I knew for sure he had a diagnosis I think I could feel more sympathy and a little less annoyed.

justmakingthebest's picture

Knowing has helped me. It makes me stop and breathe. If my "neuro-typical" kids said or acted in the way that SS does, they would be thrown through a window (joking!). There is no way that they would ever be allowed to get away with some of the things SS says and does. 

I think knowing helps me from getting my feelings hurt as well as my family. For example: When SS announces that we are all to loud and boring and he can't sit in the room with us for another moment -- that would hurt peoples feelings and we would normally get mad at anyone who would say such a thing, however us all knowing SS20, our response is "Ok, that was rude but you can head to your room for a break and quiet time". 

I think when it comes to Autism, it is as much training and educating yourself, family and friends as it is working with them to be in the real world. 

Blended4213's picture

You're right, he isn't doing SS any favors by burying his head in the sand and also not correcting those rude behaviors.

DH did tell me yesterday he's concerned with his SS15 and SS13 both lack ambition and personal responsibility. He's known for awhile SS15 needs reminders but now he's seeing SS13 is also. My bio kids ages 12 and 14 are very self-sufficient, luckily. DH sees this and is disappointed in his sons.


I tried to bring this issue up about SS13 during this conversation, like he is academically gifted but maybe he suffers from something else too behaviorally/mentally. DH almost seemed to get it, but then he mentioned maybe he babies his kids too much. I said, I do agree that kids need to sometimes fail in their own in order to learn and by middle school and high school kids need to be more self-sufficient. 


So there are possibly two issues now, that DH does baby his kids and they both may be on the spectrum. At least DH is open to this and we maybe made some headway with this issue, will see how it turns out.

fightingforpeeace's picture

my youngest son is 19 now. lives on his own. has a girlfriend and a large bank account he earned on his own. he is aspergers. he is socially awkward... intense and moves unusually slowly and prefers to be in the dark, eat bland colored foods, speak slowly and quietly with no swearing or disrespect of others. he rarely speaks. 

he is also a genius!! like emotional gangster style and... physics and space stuff. he was diagnosed at 3. had a special grant that followed him through the eighth grade... allowing for integrating practices throughout his education. all of this while being abandoned by two fathers, one bio the other an adoption. to say he is lucky in his successes is an understatement.

my 2 youngest SS, are untested but follow the patterns of the spectrum. they are 11 and 8. a musical artistic genius and a no joke top 1 percent style tested genius. socially struggling, outbursts, narcissistic and obsessive behaviors. warning signs everywhere. the parents have not gotten them tested fully because they are mean and mad at each other to the point they have gotten kicked out of both mental and health clinics for their children. they are struggling. the children and everyone around them. they suffer from it... with a bitter divorce and mad parents. 

my two nephews are full blown autistic and will require long term care. but both geniuses in their own talents.

as much as we are annoyed, embarrassed, shocked, hurt or otherwise by their behaviors... once they understand, their emotions are deeply affected causing more confusion and more outbursts. it is painful for them too. and it is a struggle to get them to see their abilities to cope and manage. 

with my own son...  he is independent to the T .. by the T ... and for the T of things. guided by a deep connection to Spock and the Vulcan ability to control emotions... a deep desire he chose to conquer as he grew older and wanted to have connections. this Vulcan like ability to cope and managed produced results approved by society, encouraged him to stick to it. he has friends, he found others like him specifically. a girlfriend, again similar to himself. and talks to and connects with those he knows can understand him. awesome right? yes... very much so.  the many years of hard work and counseling and therapies from speech to occupational... paid off. and he is a successful young man. that will go days without talking to me. maybe I hear a full paragraph over a 30 day period. doesn't bring friends or girlfriend over. will help his step brothers... but not engage with me. he loves me. he is good to me. he is absolutely respectful to me and others... but that connection we had when he was young? the way we communicated? in which it is me reading his eyes for reactions to comments or questions and him answering yes or no or maybe. That didn't change. and he needed me less and less. there are some things we can never change within them. and it hurts. but... if worked with and engaged with them and accepting the weird things or painful things and letting go.... the life we can watch them live, can be the most magical and awe inspiring and hopeful thing ever.