At a loss re my dd age 9 - ASD traits, but GP thinks she's OK

(9 Posts)
CocktailQueen Thu 24-Jan-13 09:45:23

I have posted about this before, a while ago. My dd has showsn various ASD traits for years. My dss aged 19 has AS, and I'm pretty sure my BIL has undiagnosed AS. Anyway, dd, when she was little - always preferred to be with adults, v poor eye contact, poor social skills.

Fast forward to school - she was always quiet, but at the top of her class, classed as G&T at reading, maths and sport. But outside school, poor social skills, no imagination (got an ELC princess palace for Xmas when she was 3/4 - didn't play with it - asked her why not - 'because I don't know how to'. She also has obsessions with odd things.

She's now 9 and her social skills are still poor. She often gets the wrong end of the stick in conversations - e.g. the other day I dropped ds at his class at school and the TA said that they'd get out to play in the snow, but if it carried on snowing, school may shut early, at 2.30. DD was there. She asked me afterwards, 'why would we be getting out to play at 2.30?' She had totally missed the bit about getting home early etc even though she had been standing there listening too. She either seems to be in her own world or ditsy a lot of the time, or things just don't sink in. She doesn't ask questions or tell me things like other children do - her friends are full of chat and what they'e been up to; dd hardly has anything to say. It makes me really sad.

I have read that girls are better than boys at pretending they don't have AS as they copy other people and know what they should do, but dd just isn't as 'on the ball' as other children her age. It's hard to explain. If I ask her to tidy her room, she can't. People with ASD often have difficulties with practical planning - she can't work out where to put things, in what order, so she has piles of books etc everywhere. I have to stay there and tell her what to do, and put things in piles for her and say where they should go.

Walked her to school today and she just stood there near her best friend and didn't go to say hello or anything till I asked if she was going to. It's odd. I took her to the GP about 6 months ago for an assessment but the GP was worse than useless and only had a very rigid idea of what ASD can look like.

I've done the online test with her and she scores quite highly but not enough to be obviously asd - can't remember her actual score.

She's still doing well at school - she has a good memory and concentrates well, and has a small group of friends - but I'm worried about how she will settle in to middle school next year. Is there anywhere else I can refer her to? A psychologist?

The GP thinks I'm being an over-concerned mum, but I KNOW there is something different about her. If she has ASD then I want to be able to help her. Sorry this is so long, but if anyone can suggest anything, I'd be grateful.

Chopstheduck Thu 24-Jan-13 09:49:39

Those traits sound very much like asd to me, ask the GP for a referral to CAMHs, they will meet with you and then can make appropriate referrals.

Do the school have any concerns? You could ask for her to be assessed by an educational psychologist in the school environment.

Chopstheduck Thu 24-Jan-13 09:52:34

oh and have you tried writing everything down? It's hard to describe things sometimes to a dr/paed without sounding vague, but a whole list of traits can sometimes be a lot more helpful.

CocktailQueen Thu 24-Jan-13 10:51:42

Thanks for replying, chops. Do you have children with ASD?

She has no problems with school - enjoys the routine, has just been asked to edit the school paper, gets on well with teachers and other adults - no, school has no concerns. Would I ask the school for an EP to assess her? Or my GP?

Chopstheduck Thu 24-Jan-13 11:09:09

school for the EP.

ds1 is complicated! his dx list is officially -

DCD (Developmental co-ordination disorder),
Hypermobility,
social and communication, speech and language, and sensory processing issues.

He is atypical for asd, so they were looking at a PDD-NOS (Pervasive developmental disorder - not otherwise specified) dx, but his paed left and it was never followed through.

He is a little older than your dd, but a lot of his traits are very similar. As a baby he never seeked out contact, preferred not to be held, was very docile and would just sit for hours. Speech was late, motor skills late.

He often gets the wrong end of the stick, takes people literally. It's taken a lot of work to get him to understand some irony, jokes. He couldn't do imaginative play. Would build lego, what is it Jack? Lego! He has a collection of stuffed meerkats that he thinks are real - it's not true imagination, because they are doing what he wants them to do, and they are meerkats. He couldn't possibly pretend one was a dog, for example, it would blow his mind!

Social skills - one best friend who he is slightly obsessed by, doesn't get the concept of more friends. No common sense, unpredictable.

sensory issues, funny with food, with clothes, used to lick things a lot, doesn't like loud sounds, hated hand driers. Doesn't liek to be held/touched. Does your dd have any sensory issues?

Eye contact is a bit of a red herring sometimes to be honest. DS1 won't look at cameras, wont make eye contact with strangers, but is mostly fine with me and has gone through phases of inappropriate eye contact, staring intensely. He goes to respite, and some of his friends with asd also have excellent eye contact. m

Chopstheduck Thu 24-Jan-13 11:10:10

ds1 has made quite good progress, but he has had input from occupational therapy, and socialising tutoring in school, respite, etc.

Chopstheduck Thu 24-Jan-13 11:11:46

ask school for the EP, and often children with autism do get very good at hiding it at school. DS1 could cover at school, but come out of the school gates and literally collapse in front of me due to sensory overload. I had to pick him up off the pavement and get him to the car.

CocktailQueen Thu 24-Jan-13 11:16:23

DD is fine with food but used to hate loud noises - balloons, hand driers etc. - but she has grown out of that now. A lot of her behaviour was normal toddler/young child behaviour; it was never really obvious. she doesn't mind changes in routine etc. She is very anxious and worries a lot.

She's also v absent minded - took her in to school early this week for recorder and by the time she'd got to her classroom, she'd forgotten that she had recorder, so she was late. Very bizarre- though not sure if ASD or NT!

Thanks for your help smile I'm glad that therapy has helped your ds1.

Arithmeticulous Thu 24-Jan-13 11:38:15

So the GP is refusing to refer you to CAMHS for an assessment? As I understand it, if school asks an EP to assess at school, then they have to pay, so would prefer the GP to refer (if there is any 'doubt' IYSWIM).

Can you try a different GP?

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